Would you like to enter to win a copy of ‘UK Timeline for Family Historians’, worth £9? Leave a comment at the bottom of this blog, and you’ll automatically be placed into the draw to win. Should your name be chosen, we’ll contact you directly to get an address to send it to. Written and self-published by friends and keen family historians Neil Bertram and Angela Smith, the former an experienced publisher and history undergraduate, the latter a Doctor of Combined Historical Studies, the book spans the years from 1066 to 2011 and provides a clear list of dates, events and resources available for those researching that period.
Looking through it, it’s not so much that this book contains information that can’t easily be found elsewhere, it’s just that it draws the threads handily together into one easily-flicked-through guide. There are three columns, the far one at the edge of each page covering ‘Monarchy, State and Church’, including names, dates and extra information pertinent to the nation (e.g. ‘Treaty of Versailles signed in 1919’ or ‘1558, England loses possession of Calais’). The middle column lists ‘Socio-cultural’ information’ (e.g. ‘1851, Australian gold rush begins’ or ‘1485, Battle of Bosworth’). Meanwhile, the main column lists events pertinent to family historians where there may be some traceable record (e.g. ‘1933, refugees from Nazi Germany begin to arrive: some in transit for the US; many settle in the UK… Matrimonial Causes Act broadens ground of divorce, extended to Northern Ireland in 1939’). The information in the book can either be searched by leafing through the text to a particular date, or via a handy subject index at the back.
Right, without cheating I’m going to pick a random date; let’s go for… 1859. Apparently in this year medical registers began, there was a Diphtheria epidemic, and the Anglesey Ship Disaster happened; as well, I have learned that this is when Henry Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston, took office as Prime Minister, to rule until 1865. One more go… 1941. In this year a National Census ought to have been taken, but didn’t happen because of World War Two. America joined the war and there were thousands of liaisons between US Servicemen and British women. Eventually as many as 100,000 ‘GI babies’ were born, and as many marriages took place as women went to America after the war. The UK population was 48.2 million, and that year the Blitz over Swansea took place, Special Air Service was formed, and the first Canadian soldiers arrived in the UK.
If any of this sounds like your cup of tea, leave your comment now to enter for the prize draw! Alternatively, you can buy the book direct from Amazon (who charge £9 and add P&P), or get it for the same price including free P&P within the UK from the authors’ own website: http://www.thebookforge.org.uk/publications.html.