Filed under 19th century history

Launch Date!

Launch Date!

My three books will be released on an unsuspecting (except for you dear readers) public on September 24. If you’re in the Cardiff area you will be welcome at the launch.

The Books are Written!

The Books are Written!

Hello lovely readers! I apologise yet again for my long silence, but it has been productive.  I have now cleared away most of my research books and notes so I am no longer at risk of breaking my neck every time I move around my workroom. I have completed my three books which will be … Continue reading

Me in Tin Type

I hate having my photo taken but the chance of being immortalised in a mid 19th century technology was irresistible. Magical watching the image slowly appear, hair first. The photo is by Gareth Jarvis

Curiosities at Gloucester Folk Museum

Curiosities at Gloucester Folk Museum

Sometimes I find references to items which I really need to see to understand. Fortunately some museums have handling exhibitions which help. This was a Tudor exhibit at the recent doors open day. This is a trencher, a precursor of plates. It’s only a few inches across as they did not have all the food … Continue reading

Still Grieving Lost Children

Still Grieving Lost Children

This is really sad, from Joseph Leech’s Rural Rides, from the churchyard at Keynsham, though the author could have been a bit more diplomatic: My attention was attracted by 2 very antiquated crones, who came hobbling towards me over the graves which, in the course of nature, they ought to have long since filled; both … Continue reading

Paupers Riot 1830

Paupers Riot 1830

Here’s another horror story from Bristol’s past which serves as a warning of where we may be heading. The 1840s was a time of massive social upheaval across Europe, echoing the previous century’s ‘hungry forties’, but the problems were soaring in the 1830s. In Bristol, trade declines, so many workers were reduced to pauperism and … Continue reading

Wellington’s Victory Dinner Service

The Duke of Wellington is one of Britain’s greatest military heroes, but he was also seen as a saviour in Spain and Portugal. In the V&A is this huge dinner set commissioned by these grateful nations, produced 1813-16  

Forth Bridge and Britain’s Decline

Forth Bridge and Britain’s Decline

This is from a piece by Ian Jack who remembered the opening of its predecessor 53 years ago. What has been lost? Odd little things: a quiet pice of shoreline a view, a further erosion of Fife’s separateness – which could be argued is for the good. The argument against the car is a bigger … Continue reading