Social & Industrial History
'A Great Educational Tradition'
A History of Hutchesons' Grammar School
A former headmaster, still deeply involved in Scottish education, Brian Lockhart presents a full history of Hutcheson’s Grammar School in Glasgow, from the foundation of the original Hutcheson’s Hospital in 1641 until recent years when the School has become one of the largest and most academically successful in Scotland. The book includes recollections of pupils from both the Boys’ and Girls’ Schools and biographical listings of former staff and prominent pupils.
Cremation In Modern Scotland
History, Architecture and the Law
Approaching cremation as ‘a form of funeral that opens up deep questions about a people’s way of life, attitude to the past, present and future, and even to a sense of destiny’, the authors of this multidisciplinary study examine the history of burial reform and cremation in Scotland. They also explore the common law of Scotland relating to cremation, and the architectural challenge of providing buildings for disposal, ritual and remembrance.
Holding the Home Front
The Women's Land Army in the First World War
Within days of the start of the First World War there were calls for women to come to the fields, but it would be almost three years before the Women’s Land Army was formally established. Using previously unpublished accounts and photographs, this social history looks at how the movement impacted agriculture at a time of national crisis and examines the rhetoric surrounding it, the political purpose that shaped it and the experiences of those who worked for it.
A 1970s Childhood
From Glam Rock to Happy Days
Organized in categories including School, Holidays, Fashion and Television, this nostalgic compendium takes the reader on a whistle-stop tour of the 1970s. Reminiscing about everything from Chopper bikes, Kojak and kipper ties to power cuts, Green Shield Stamps and the long hot summer of 1976, Derek Tait perfectly captures the zeitgeist of the era.
The Swinging Sixties
An Iconic Decade in Pictures
In this photographic portrait of the 1960s, drawn from the Mirrorpix archive, musicians, models, fashion designers, actors and artists dominate the ‘swinging’ scene; but amid the hair-dos, festivals and flower power, there’s also Bobby Moore kissing the World Cup and the new Concorde being wheeled out to meet its adoring fans.
Christmas at War
Heartwarming True Stories of How Britain Came Together on the Home Front
Gleaned from first-person interviews, diaries and letters, this collection of festive wartime recollections evokes a less materialistic, more stoic world. From memories of resourceful makeshift dinners, handmade presents and carol singing during the black-out to an account of Christmas day in Colditz, the stories range in tone from humorous to heartbreaking.
Cobbled Streets and Penny Sweets
Happy Times and Hardship in Post-War Britain
Born in the 1950s in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Yvonne Young experienced a childhood that was inextricably entwined with her community's lifeblood – the shipbuilding industry. This evocative, sometimes hard-hitting portrait of everyday life in the more deprived part of the city depicts the characters she met and the challenges she faced, tempered with a healthy dose of Geordie humour.
Rebuilding Post-War Britain
Latvian, Lithuanian and Estonian Refugees in Britain, 1946–1951
After the Second World War, 25,000 Latvians, Lithuanians and Estonians, displaced by conflict and invasion, were recruited to fill labour shortages in Britain. Drawing on interviews and documentary sources, Emily Gilbert brings this little-known episode to life, and explains the refugees’ contribution to British society.
Britain's Living Past
A Celebration of Britain's Surviving Traditional Cultural and Working Practices
Beginning, as befits a maritime nation, on a covered slipway where shipwrights continue to build and repair wooden vessels, Anthony Burton describes British traditional crafts, working practices, sports and entertainments that are still very much alive. Photographed in action by Rob Scott, here are rope-makers, wheelwrights, farriers at the Appleby Horse Fair and engineers maintaining the Manx Steam Railway; lace making and caber tossing; and the book ends on a fiery note, with Shetland’s Up Helly Aa festival.
A Family's Story of Courage and Survival on Both Sides of the Berlin Wall
As the Second World War ended and the Soviets seized control of eastern Germany, Hanna, a teacher’s daughter, escaped to the West. Her parents and siblings remained in the East, and the family was separated. Forty years later, as the Berlin Wall was torn down, her daughter Nina, now a US intelligence officer, rediscovered her lost family. In this poignant memoir she tells their remarkable story against the backdrop of events that shaped the world.
1968 in America
Music, Politics, Chaos, Counterculture, and the Shaping of a Generation
First published in the 1980s, this classic account of the impact of the 1960s counter-culture revolution in America focuses on a climactic year of student strikes, civil rights protests and the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy.
The Century Girls
The Final Word from the Women Who've Lived the Past Hundred Years of British History
First-hand accounts of a century of radical change are recalled here as six women born before 1918 speak candidly about topics including work, family, sex and politics. Coming from diverse economic and cultural backgrounds, their experiences ranged from domestic service to teaching at Cambridge, but taken together they reveal the extent and impact of major events such as suffrage, the Second World War and the opportunities that followed.
Victorians and Edwardians Abroad
The Beginning of the Modern Holiday
The Polytechnic Touring Agency (PTA) was created in 1888 to cater for the growing numbers of lower middle-class people who could for the first time afford to holiday abroad. From the PTA archive at the University of Westminster, this book presents the recollections of those who enjoyed ‘Poly holidays’ before 1914. Illustrated with postcards, photographs and promotional items, it records their train journeys to Paris, Switzerland and Italy, and reveals a penchant for mischievous fun.
Pain and Prejudice
A Call to Arms for Women and Their Bodies
In 2015 Gabrielle Jackson's account of living with endometriosis inspired a worldwide investigation into the disease by The Guardian. Blending personal memoir and polemic, she confronts the ways in which our culture responds to the pain caused by a variety of medical conditions unique to women, revealing how they are frequently let down by the systems that ostensibly exist to help them.
The Justice Women
The Female Presence in the Criminal Justice System 1800–1970
Today we are accustomed to seeing female police officers, barristers and judges, but this only came about through more than a century of struggle. This absorbing book traces the history of the fight for equality and professional status through the lives of pioneering women in the legal system. They include Edith Smith, the first woman police officer to be sworn in, Lilian Wyles, the first female chief inspector, and the remarkable judge Rose Heilbron.
The Extraordinary Story of Britain's First Female Firefighter
Josephine Reynolds was 12 when her family home in west Wales burned down. In 1981, aged 17, she joined the fire service. This memoir tells how she coped in this all-male environment, while dealing with forest fires, escaped zoo animals and unexploded bombs.
Images of the Past: The British Seaside
Drawing on the archives of the Mary Evans Picture Library, this collection of photographs, cartoons, illustrations and ephemera tells the story of the British seaside, looking at how the purpose, traditions and character of coastal resorts have developed since the first sea bathing cure destinations opened in the late 18th century. Each image is captioned and accompanied by explanatory text.
Tales from the Big House: Normanby Hall
400 Years of its History and People
The ancestral seat of the Sheffields (Samantha Cameron's family), the current Normanby Hall was built in the 1820s. This social history records its role in local industry and its use as a military hospital and personnel base in the First and Second World Wars. The tales of the resident family, guests and staff include that of the charismatic Lady Grosvenor, who astonished servants by arriving in a gypsy caravan.
Call the Midwife
A True Story of the East End in the 1950s
The book that sparked the award-winning TV series details Jennifer Worth’s experiences as a young midwife based in a convent amid the chaos of post-war London Docklands. Her true-life stories show how tough conditions were in the East End, especially for women, who often lived in slum accommodation – grateful if they had a cold-water tap – with ten or more children to look after.
The Corner Shop
Shopkeepers, the Sharmas and the Making of Modern Britain
Growing up in a Reading corner shop, the BBC television newsreader Babita Sharma was witness to a changing world and its impact on customers’ lives and opinions as well as the products they bought. In this volume, she links her recollections of shop life with the last fifty years of British history, reflecting on an institution that, despite the creep of supermarkets, online shopping and home delivery, has found a way to evolve and survive.
Voices from the Past
In the full knowledge that hostilities would end at 11am, some units were still sent into battle on the morning of 11th November 1918, and some soldiers were reportedly keen to fire the very last shots. From the first attempts to negotiate a peace to the final battles and the moment of ceasefire itself, this book tells the story of the conclusion of the First World War through contemporary newspaper reports and the words of politicians, military leaders and ordinary soldiers.
In Our Time
Celebrating Twenty Years of Essential Conversation
Between 1998 and 2018, Melvyn Bragg and his co-presenters hosted 815 editions of In Our Time, BBC Radio 4's Thursday morning live discussion, with academics talking on topics in history, science, philosophy, culture and religion. Chosen from the accumulated riches of 20 years, this is an illustrated selection of 50 of the most interesting conversations about subjects as diverse as the 18th-century gin craze, photosynthesis, Confucius, Turner’s The Fighting Temeraire, and the story of Tristan and Iseult.
The Women's Army Auxiliary Corps in France, 1917–1921
Women Urgently Wanted
Documenting the experiences of the WAACs who served in France, this study follows the women from enrolment to demobilization, notes the part they played in the Spring Offensive of 1918 and the Armistice, and analyses how the army, the general public and the press viewed them.
Miss Muriel Matters
The Fearless Suffragist who Fought for Equality
Muriel Matters (1877–1969), ‘that daring Australian girl’ who chained herself to a grille in Parliament and demanded votes for women, dedicated her life to campaigning for social reform. This biography reveals the lengths the former actress and executive of the Women’s Freedom League went to for causes including prison reform, Montessori schools and help for the poor. Her direct action ranged from attending demonstrations to boarding an airship in 1909 to drop leaflets onto Edward VII’s carriage.
Same Sex Love 1700–1957
A History and Research Guide
This first history of gay relationships aimed specifically at family historians offers valuable insights into the lives of those who found themselves on the wrong side of the law. Empathetic and well researched, it records the ways in which gay men and women lived, from the Mollies and Sapphists of Georgian England to those affected by the Wolfenden Report of 1957, and offers research tips for genealogists.
Britain's Best-Known Brand
As Britain’s longest-reigning monarch, the Queen is seen by many as a calm, reassuring presence in an era of restless change. This book looks at the institute she represents, explaining the machinery that sustains the monarchy: its constitutional role, its leadership of the Church of England and its finances, and speculates on its future, and the pressures that will face an heir to the throne. Slightly off-mint.
How the Bicycle Reinvented Modern Britain
The perfection of the safety bicycle in the late 19th century did not just provide a more secure, comfortable ride for enthusiasts, it opened up cycling to everyone: cheap travel for the working classes, the means for city dwellers to visit the countryside and liberation from the home for women. This social history explores the profound effects the bicycle had on British society in the early 20th century.
Spangles, Tiddlywinks and The Clitheroe Kid
Childhood in the 1950s was very different from what it is today. With no video games and few televisions, children played conkers, climbed trees, constructed go-karts and built dens on bomb sites. This book recaptures that lost era, bringing to life the experiences of home and school, childhood illnesses, simple toys, sweets, comics, films and music of the period, along with games such as 'It' and 'Knock Down Ginger'.
Captain Cuttle's Mailbag
History, Folklore and Victorian Pedantry from the Pages of 'Notes and Queries'
The weekly issues of Notes and Queries were the Victorian equivalent of today’s online forums, a vital research tool for ‘literary men, artists, antiquaries, genealogists, etc.’ This selection from the magazine’s First Series (1849–55) covers such varied topics as bookselling, curious wills and epitaphs, the voracity of the hedgehog – and the English habit of ‘profane swearing’.
Ancestors on the Move
A History of Overseas Travel
Many families owe their present location to travel, whether emigration to the USA, transportation to Australia or migration from the Caribbean. This book charts the main sea routes, describes conditions on board ship, and details the records researchers can consult to trace their ancestors’ journey.
Tracing Your Ancestors Through Letters and Personal Writings
A Guide for Family Historians
Family papers and annotated books can reveal much more about their writers than might appear at first glance, offering an insight into their social status, health and character. Ruth Symes, a genealogical expert, looks at a variety of unpublished writings, from letters and diaries to postcards, poems and signatures, and explains how to get as much information as possible from each source.
A Revolution of Feeling
The Decade that Forged the Modern Mind
In the 1790s Britain experienced what Edmund Burke called ‘a revolution in sentiments’: Hewitt shows how the French Revolution inspired British radicals to incorporate raw emotion into reformist ideals concerning sex, education, commerce and medicine. However, while this had enduring political effects, the aspirations of Enlightenment figures including Samuel Coleridge, William Godwin, Mary Wollstonecraft and Thomas Wedgwood went unfulfilled as the ensuing Terror led to political crackdowns in Britain.
Cracked Eggs and Chicken Soup
Memories of an East End Childhood Between the Wars
Norman Jacobs’s portrait of East End life in the 1920s and 1930s is based on conversations with his father. Isaac's great affection for the area and its diverse population becomes clear as he recalls their hardships – the overcrowding, the unemployment and the hunger – and their simple pleasures – the music hall, the two-valve radio and the first Wembley Cup Final.
Waiting for War
Against the backdrop of the blitzkrieg on Poland and the disastrous Norway campaign, Britain waited tensely for an invasion that never came. Drawing on unpublished letters, this narrative history presents the stories of ordinary people as the lights went out, theatres closed, food and petrol were rationed and thousands of women and children were evacuated. While the hard-hitting measures caused morale to plunge, there was still humour to be found in the absurdities of the ‘Phoney War’.
The Underground Railroad
A Selection of Authentic Narratives
William Still (1821–1902) was the son of a fugitive slave and an activist in the Philadelphia Anti-Slavery Society and Vigilance Committee, aiding escaping slaves. Published in 1872, his famous book tells the stories of the African Americans who used the ‘Underground Railroad’ network of ‘conductors’ in their bid for freedom. Abridged.
What the Suffragists Did Next
How the Fight for Women's Rights Went On
The suffragists of the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS) - as distinct from the suffragettes - did not disband in 1917 when the vote was given to some women. Although franchise had been their primary goal, they had other aims for women. This book looks at the lives of eight suffragists and how they continued the struggle for equality in various fields, among them Eleanor Lodge in higher education, Ellen Wilkinson in Socialist politics and Dr Isabel Emslie Hutton in medicine.
Vintage Posters from RoSPA's Archive
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) has been helping people recognize risk since the increase in road traffic and traffic accidents during the First World War. Drawing on a recently discovered archive of artwork, this book looks back at how public information posters – dealing with safety at work and at home as well as on the roads – used slogans and colourful graphics to keep people safe in the period between the 1920s and the 1960s.
Famous Brand Names and Their Origins
From Bovril and Vaseline to Cluedo and John Lewis, our homes and high streets are full of products and companies with famous names, just as they were in the past. This history explains the origins of many of the best-known brands, with facts, period advertising and nostalgic images of the original versions of everyday household favourites.
Making Monte Carlo
A History of Speculation and Spectacle
Monaco was an obscure, impoverished principality until, in 1855, it legalized gambling, and Monte Carlo was born. Blending research, storytelling and scandal, this account describes how princes, profiteers and press agents created the first modern casino resort, how it flourished in the belle époque and how, after the First World War, it was reinvented for the Jazz Age. Its cast of characters includes Karl and Harpo Marx, Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Picasso and Cole Porter.
The Fraternity of the Estranged
The Fight for Homosexual Rights in England, 1891–1908
Against the background of the 1885 Act that criminalized male homosexuality and led to the imprisonment of Oscar Wilde, two young scholars, Edward Carpenter and John Addington Symonds, began writing and campaigning for the rights of gay men. Drawing on primary sources, this book explores their pioneering ideas, the personal cost to themselves, and their connection with Havelock Ellis, whose Sexual Inversion (1897) became the first English study of homosexuality.
The Dandy at Dusk
Taste and Melancholy in the Twentieth Century
Dispelling the notion that dandyism can be defined as an extravagance of dress, and seeing it more as an art form, this social history explores its relationship to modernity and issues of identity. Through profiles of six 20th-century dandies, including the Duke of Windsor, Quentin Crisp and the film director Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Philip Mann shows how their dedication to style is linked intrinsically to their aesthetic values and attitudes.
The Reformation Experience
Living Through the Turbulent 16th Century
Histories of the Reformation have tended to concentrate on its major events and its most important figures, but this book follows a more recent trend by paying closer attention to ordinary people’s thoughts and lives. With a focus on the experience of individuals and communities in England, Ives considers how much the period’s divisive religious changes affected their beliefs, loyalties and behaviour.
City of Light, City of Poison
Murder, Magic, and the First Police Chief of Paris
In 1667 the lawyer Nicolas de La Reynie was appointed by Louis XIV as the first lieutenant general of Paris, with far-reaching powers to combat the city’s filth, violence and organized crime. Based on court transcripts and La Reynie’s extensive notes, this account of his work describes not only projects for installing street lighting and cleaning pavements but also his shocking discovery of a cabal of poisoners, witches and renegade priests whose malign influence reached deep into the Sun King’s court.
To Our Brothers
Memorials to a Lost Generation in British Schools
In the years after the First World War, Britain’s public schools, in common with thousands of communities across the country, erected memorials honouring their war dead. Ranging from wooden crosses returned from makeshift graves near the battlefields to new buildings, and including panels listing the dead, stained glass windows, statues and books of remembrance, the memorials in 49 schools are surveyed in this handsome, illustrated volume, with details of each school’s way of remembering its fallen old boys and masters.
The Forgotten Suffragettes
The long struggle for women's suffrage involved thousands of campaigners and activists from every walk of life. While some protested peacefully, others, exasperated with the government's indifference to their demands, burned down football stadiums or refused to pay their taxes. This compendium tells the stories of 48 lesser-known figures in the movement including the arsonist Edith Rigby, the Irish nationalist Mary Hayden and the Communist Ellen Wilkinson.
Menus, Munitions and Keeping the Peace
The Home Front Diaries of Gabrielle West 1914–1917
Gabrielle West worked variously as a Red Cross volunteer, a cook and a police officer during the First World War. Her diary entries, now part of the Imperial War Museum archives, note the discrimination she encountered as a woman in a position of responsibility, and the dangers posed by the Zeppelin raids over London. They paint a lively picture of her experience of the British Home Front and are illustrated with her drawings and family photographs.
Experiences of Charity
Examining the experience of charity and the complex motivations that prompted charitable endeavour in the period c.1100 to 1650, this volume of 13 essays includes case studies relating to England, France and the Low Countries. The topics under discussion include charity towards lepers; bequests for the poor in 15th-century Norwich wills; monastic poor relief in late medieval England; and Huguenot charity in London.
A Woman Looking at Men Looking at Women
Essays on Art, Sex, and the Mind
Drawing on her belief that the arts and sciences need not be considered as separate, or gendered, award-winning novelist Siri Hustvedt investigates how such perceptions were formed. With an interdisciplinary approach, she invites readers to question the assumptions that shape our world and our responses to it.
All Quiet on the Home Front
An Oral History of Life in Britain During the First World War
First published in 2003, this oral history used interviews with 100 people then in their late nineties, who had lived through the First World War, not as combatants, but as children and young adults on the home front. Their words, along with letters, diary entries and the authors’ linking narrative, offer an unusual view of the war, from fears of the Kaiser’s ambition in the years before its outbreak, to the jubilation, readjustment and mourning following the Armistice.
A Series of Original Portraits and Character Etchings
Previously a surgeon-barber, John Kay (1742–1826) set up shop as a portrait etcher in Edinburgh in 1785. Published in 1837–8 and commonly called Edinburgh Portraits, this work presents, in no particular order, around 300 of Kay's etchings of people from all walks of Edinburgh life, with 'biographical' sketches and 'illustrative anecdotes' by James Paterson. These volumes are facsimiles of the first edition. Limited edition of 600. Slipcased.
The Conquest of Death
Violence and the Birth of the Modern English State
‘By the seventeenth century the detection, conviction, and punishment of illegitimate lethal violence were firmly and irrevocably tied to the central government.’ Matthew Lockwood’s study shows how definitions of legitimate and illegitimate violence were negotiated in coroners’ courts from the late 15th century and gradually gave government the power to enforce a monopoly of violence – a basic prerequisite of a modern state.
The Lengthening War
The Great War Diary of Mabel Goode
Having lived in Germany for a time before the outbreak of the First World War, middle-aged, middle-class diarist Mabel Goode knew 'the enemy nation' as many Britons did not, which adds an extra dimension to her contemporary account of the years 1914–1916. She records enrolment, rationing, the collapse of domestic service and the growth of war work, the Zeppelin attacks over Yorkshire, the ever-mounting casualty lists and a growing disillusionment with a lengthening conflict.
Struggle or Starve
Working-Class Unity in Belfast's 1932 Outdoor Relief Riots
Northern Ireland’s economy was decimated in the late 1920s, with unemployment rising to 40 per cent and those out of work forced to sign on for Outdoor Relief, a pittance given in return for manual labour. Mitchell gives a complete account of ‘relief’ programmes in the North, the reaction of the unemployed in the Outdoor Relief Strike and the ensuing riots – a show of working-class unity in a city usually associated with sectarian violence.
Victorians in Camera
The World of 19th Century Studio Photography
Whether it was an expensive daguerreotype, a piece of studio trickery, or a carte de visite, the Victorians were fascinated by photography, and by portraits in particular. Using contemporary texts and images, Robert Pols describes the experience of the 19th-century photographic studio from the subjects’ point of view, exploring why and how they chose a photographer, pose or style, and their uses for the finished products.
Harry's Last Stand
How the World My Generation Built is Falling Down, and What We Can Do to Save It
Born in Yorkshire in 1923 and brought up in poverty, Harry Leslie Smith was a survivor of the Great Depression, an RAF veteran of the Second World War and now an activist for the preservation of social democracy and author of Guardian articles online. Part autobiography, part commentary on contemporary society, this is his passionate account of 'how the world my generation built is falling down, and what we can do to save it'.
Memories of a Rascal's 1950s Childhood
With a turbulent home life, the young Peter Stockley found adventure and a sense of belonging with his gang, ‘the Scallywags’, in 1950s Liverpool. Their joyful but sometimes dangerous escapades, including exploring bombed-out houses and swimming in rat-infested canals, shaped the rest of his life and he recounts with nostalgia and humour some of his adventures. Slightly off-mint.
Deeds Not Words
The Story of Women's Rights, Then and Now
The suffragette descendant and activist Helen Pankhurst records the changes in the lives of women since 1918 – the year in which, with certain caveats, those over the age of 30 won the right to vote in national elections. In the context of themes including politics, money, identity, violence, culture and social norms, she celebrates landmark successes and little-known victories, and considers how far women still have to go to achieve true equality. Slightly off-mint.
Dress Like a Woman
Working Women and What They Wore
Although women started to enter employment en masse in the early 20th century, it was not until the 1970s that they began to exercise a modicum of autonomy over what they wore at work. Accompanied by introductory essays by fashion journalist Vanessa Friedman and New York Times. bestselling author Roxane Gay, the 240 photographs in this volume depict the changes in women’s clothing in the workplace over the last hundred years.
How have gay men and women lived, loved, and coped with prejudice through the ages? This chronological survey ranges from two men of ancient Egypt to the Cuban writer and dissident Reinaldo Arenas (1943–1990), taking in such celebrated figures as Sappho, Michelangelo and Oscar Wilde. With 128 illustrations, 56 in colour, it presents a rich tapestry of gay life from the unknowable relationships of the distant past to the frankest affirmations of modern sexuality. Slightly off-mint.
Childhood and Death in Victorian England
Sarah Seaton surveys the hazards of childhood in an age when childbirth was fraught with danger, child labour was exploited, there was no adequate protection against disease, and little, if any social support for the poor. As well as these daunting obstacles to health and happiness, the book describes cases of child murder, infanticide and concealment of birth, and explains the often desperate circumstances in which such crimes were committed.
Lifting the Lid on Women's Lives
This social history examines the lives of late 19th- and early 20th-century women at home and at work through the changing appearance of the buttons that decorated and fastened their clothes. Lynn Knight explores the role of these accessories as emblems of security, identity and independence and explains how each example represents an era or a vanished way of life, from Victorian mourning attire to Biba’s large statement buttons of the 1970s.
St George and the Dragons
The Making of English Identity
Michael Collins investigates how a Near Eastern martyr became England’s patron saint and an icon of English culture. He takes a wide-ranging look at the historical figure, along with legends about him, and considers his influence on English history, culture and institutions. Finally, Collins asks what the relevance and role of St George might be in the secular, multicultural England of both today and tomorrow.
Your Country Needs You
The Secret History of the Propaganda Poster
Alfred Leete’s iconic image of Lord Kitchener pointing over the slogan ‘Your Country Needs You’ is a design classic which was widely imitated, for instance in the American designer James Montgomery Flagg’s Uncle Sam poster. James Taylor explores its influence on the propaganda posters of Allied countries in the First World War and beyond, while arguing that, since it originated as a magazine cover and postcard, its direct effect on enlistment was smaller than is commonly believed.
Some Sunny Day
A Nurse. A Soldier. A Wartime Love Story
When Madge stepped onto a troop ship headed for Burma in 1944, she knew that life as a military nurse would be challenging. In this memoir, written with the aid of journalist Robert Blair, she recalls her experiences, humorous as well as difficult; the friends she shared them with; and how, amid the trauma and tragedy, she also found true love.
White Boots and Miniskirts
A True Story of Life in the Swinging Sixties
From the author of Bombsites and Lollipops, this is a memoir of the Swinging Sixties, recounting how Jacky grew up as a free-spirited, hedonistic girl in search of adventure and independence. The decade’s music, fashion and culture has become iconic, but this is a more personal look at a world of souped-up Minis, conmen, typewriters, bed-hopping, tragic romances, flat-sharing, Soviet spies and the smoke-filled pubs of Fleet Street. Slightly off-mint.
Growing Up in the Not-So-Friendly 'Baby Boomer' Years
Looking back to children’s education, play, home life and health in the 1950s, Simon Webb paints a realistic picture of childhood, often at odds with baby boomers’ own memories of those years. Using documented evidence and examples, he discusses topics including sexual abuse, juvenile crime, playground hazards, and fears about the new media of television and comics in the post-war decade, arguing that children’s lives today are far safer, healthier and happier.
Country House Life
A Century in Photographs
With an engaging commentary and over 250 photographs of the people who lived and worked in houses such as Polesden Lacey, Lacock Abbey and Castle Drogo, this book offers an authentic picture of life in the English country house during its heyday. Drawn from family albums and collections and covering the period from the 1840s to 1945, the photographs record everyday life for the families and staff as well as family celebrations, garden parties, sporting events and the occasional visit by royalty.
The Jamestown Brides
The Untold Story of England's 'Maids for Virginia'
In 1621 the near-bankrupt Virginia Company of London made a profit by shipping across the Atlantic 56 young women who had been hand-picked as brides for the planters of its new colony. Using archival sources including the company’s own records, Potter gives voice to these women, asking why they agreed to make the dangerous journey, how they adapted to their new lives, how they chose their husbands and what happened to them in the end.
Scouse, Choppers and Space Hoppers
Happy Days and Hard Times in Sixties and Seventies Liverpool
In this nostalgic memoir, the comedian Crissy Rock recalls growing up in working-class Liverpool during the 1960s, an era when traditional values of community, family and hard work counted for everything, even as bold changes in culture, fashion and music swept through the city.
In Bed with the Georgians
Sex, Scandal and Satire in the 18th Century
The sex trade flourished openly and profitably in Georgian England, particularly in the area around London’s Covent Garden. This illustrated history considers how the ‘oldest profession’ permeated all classes – from the courtesans who plied their trade within the very highest echelons of society right down to the common prostitutes who walked the streets – and examines how the scene was portrayed by the letter writers, journalists, satirists and caricaturists of the time.
The Country House at War
Fighting the Great War at Home and in the Trenches
Simon Greaves explores the experiences of the men and women who, during the First World War, lived and worked at properties that are now part of the National Trust. Drawing on unpublished letters, diaries and memoirs, and illustrated with period images, the book records how stately homes became military hospitals and training camps, and follows the fate of those who left them to fight in the trenches.
The health benefits of sea-bathing first encouraged people to visit the seafront in the 18th century and even small towns without a port or harbour, like Blackpool, began to develop as resorts. This highly illustrated volume, with historic and contemporary photographs, prints and illustrations, examines the history, geography, economy, architecture, entertainments and future of the British seaside resort.
A Fortunate Man
The Story of a Country Doctor
First published in 1967, this book follows the GP John Sassall as he goes about his rounds in rural Gloucestershire. What emerges, in the words of John Berger and the photographs of Jean Mohr, is a portrait of a community, and of a remarkable man who combined breadth of vision with a deep appreciation of the minutiae of everyday life.
How to Behave Badly in Renaissance Britain
From curses to strategically timed bows that could signal disdain rather than deference, and outright violence exhibited across the social classes, Ruth Goodman explores the language and actions considered rude in the 15th and 16th centuries. With anecdotes and examples from contemporary manuals, court cases and sermons, she demonstrates how unconventional behaviour can reveal as much about society as its norms, whether a subtle faux pas born of ignorance or a defiant snubbing of etiquette.
Scotland and the Sea
The Scottish Dimension in Maritime History
Scotland was at the forefront of Britain’s dominance of international trade in the 19th century: the greatest centre of shipbuilding in the world and the possessor, in Glasgow, of one of the principal ports and centres of industry. This history details these contributions to seaborne business and also describes the part that energetic and well-educated Scottish emigrants have played in encouraging maritime commerce by taking their engineering and entrepreneurial skills to all parts of the world.
An Edwardian Housewife's Companion
A Guide for the Perfect Home
Written from a first person perspective and drawing on contemporary advertisements and photographs, this light-hearted study of the lifestyle of affluent Edwardian women offers insights into their complicated garments, their questionable, even dangerous, health and beauty regimes and their household management, shopping and entertainment habits.
The Art of Dining
A History of Cooking & Eating
From the cavernous kitchens of medieval manors to the relatively sophisticated technology of Victorian houses, this volume draws on the records of National Trust properties to show how cooking and dining habits evolved through the centuries. The book is illustrated with reproductions of paintings from each period and photographs of surviving kitchens, and each chapter includes practical modern adaptations of historical recipes.
Slap and Tickle
The Unusual History of Sex and the People Who Have It
This irreverent guide takes a peek at a perennially fascinating subject. A romp through the biological mechanics and history of human intercourse is spiced up with intimate true stories, public scandals, censorship, sex toys, fetishes, and a concise glossary of filthy language. Eclectic, entertaining and original, it reveals everything you always wanted to know about sex – and quite a few things you probably didn’t. Sexually explicit.
The Mighty Healer
Thomas Holloway's Victorian Patent Medicine Empire
Selling the ‘cure-alls’ he made by bottling leftover cooking grease in the kitchen of his parents' Cornish pub set Thomas Holloway on the road to becoming one of the richest self-made men in Victorian England. Here the author (a distant cousin) explores the rise and fall of his patent medicine empire and reveals how he used his millions to build the enormous Gothic college that still bears his name.
Through the Keyhole
Sex, Scandal and the Secret Life of the Country House
From around 1760 to the 1830s, stories about the sex lives of the rich and powerful were guaranteed to increase the readership of popular printed literature. Papers were so packed with salacious tales of secret sex that there seemed to be an epidemic of adultery among the aristocracy. This study explores the personal stories of men and women involved in adulterous affairs and compares their accounts of infidelity and its sometimes tragic consequences with the stereotypes of dissolute aristocrats in the popular press.
A Dance Through Time
Images of Western Social Dancing from the Middle Ages to Modern Times
Where depictions of peasant revels may be exuberant and unfettered, the stately codes of formal dance before the modern era created a tension between sobriety and decorum and underlying emotion or sexual tension. This art history curates images of dance from the Bodleian Library and explores their different meanings and themes, including how artists have conveyed the movement of dance technically and the social and historical information that can be gleaned from depictions of dancing, instructional illustrations and satirical sketches.
The Last Shepherds
A Vanishing Way of Life on Britain's Traditional Hill Farms
Shepherds were ubiquitous from pre-biblical times, their occupation a way of life – some even had their own language for counting sheep. Today, among other things, fewer sheep and quad bikes contribute to dwindling shepherd numbers. First published in 2004, this account follows three shepherds through their year, witnessing lambing, haymaking, sheep fairs and the training of a puppy to become a working sheepdog, and describes traditions that have disappeared or are under threat.
The Life of Two Countries, England and Germany, in Many Stories
Two world wars have all but erased the memory that Britain and Germany were once the best of friends. This history charts three centuries of cooperation between allies bonded by blood, religion and culture. Wide-ranging and richly anecdotal, it also recounts the stories of individuals – from the royal family through writers and musicians to ordinary people working abroad – whose lives straddled two nations, and how their loyalties were put to the test after 1914.
A Downstairs History of Britain from the Nineteenth Century to Modern Times
From the large staff running an Edwardian estate to the harried housemaid of a cramped middle-class home, servants were once an integral part of British life. Richly entertaining and impeccably researched, this fascinating history uses letters and diaries to bring to life the day-to-day experience of men and women whose lives were dedicated to providing for their employers’ personal needs and social status, and reflects on why, in a more egalitarian age, we look back on those times with nostalgia. Off-mint.
Voices of the First World War
A crucially important port during the First World War, the city of Liverpool also reflected the domestic political problems of the day with industrial unrest and Irish home rule both pertinent topics for the large working class and Irish populations. Through letters and diaries, this book highlights the experiences and attitudes of people living and working in the city during the period as well as Merseysiders serving abroad.
Holidays in Victorian England
Images of the Past
Margaret B was an ordinary middle-class English girl of the late Victorian era whose family made trips all over southern England. Their visits to places such as Brighton, Broadstairs, Exeter and Ilfracombe were recorded in Margaret's photographs. Accompanied by Thorburn's informative commentary, her pictures of the countryside and seaside, architectural splendours and quaint villages reveal the typical holiday for middle-class Victorians in an England untouched by cars and car parks.
The Trampled Wife
The Scandalous Life of Mary Eleanor Bowes
Mary Eleanor Bowes (1749-1800), direct ancestor of the Queen, was heiress to 'all the wealth of the north', but her life was anything but smooth and sweet. After an unhappy marriage to the 9th Earl of Strathmore, she fell into the cruel hands of an adventurer who resorted to extreme behaviour to get his hands on her money. Derek Parker tells an extraordinary true story of greed, blackmail, duelling, kidnapping and adultery that is more gripping than an historical novel.
Investigating the life of her distant ancestor, a Victorian bobby, Gaynor Haliday found herself researching the world of 19th century policing. Stories of how various police forces were established, the subtle craft of crowd control (including times when cutlasses replaced truncheons), and the myriad laws surrounding prostitution are accompanied by newspaper quotes, police records and photographs to recount how the foundations of modern policing were laid.