October 2012 – The British Newspaper Archive Blog

Blog

Halloween Traditions and Superstitions – as Reported in 19th Century Newspapers

Boo! Boo, again! To celebrate “All Hallows’ Eve”, we’ve posted two, fascinating newspaper articles – from 1847 and 1892 – which report on the Halloween superstitions and traditions prevalent in the UK and Ireland during the mind and late 19th Century. In particular, we love the ‘nutty’ tradition of how a maiden can magically discover which of her suitors is ‘the one’ who can provide her with a happy life and marriage. Both of the articles also explain the origins and

Continue Reading

Tags

US Presidential Election of 1884 – Blog #2 by Edmund King

As we approach the end of the 2012 U.S Presidential Election,   predictions say there will be a close contest between Obama and Romney. There have been other narrow victories in the past. There are thousands of newspaper articles for each of the 19th century U.S. Presidential elections. There was a close race in the presidential election of 1884, between Cleveland (Democrat) and Blaine (Republican). Reuter’s Telegrams were often quoted, as in Sheffield Daily Telegraph – Saturday 04 October 1884 (p.5

Continue Reading

Tags

Great flood of London – eight people killed as wave of beer swept through London’s streets

The ‘Evening Standard’ published a news story from the British Newspaper Archive this week about a tragedy that took place in London in October 1814, when 8 people were drowned by a wave of beer in the Tottenham Court Road. We thought that people might like to read this story, so we’ve posted it below. ************************** A huge wave of beer swept through London’s streets almost 200 years ago, killing 8 people including a 3 year old child, records at

Continue Reading

Tags

Charge of the Light Brigade – “An Officer’s Account of the Cavalry Charge at Balaklava”

As the Battle of Balaclava took place in October 1854, we’ve been reading some newspaper stories about this famous episode in the Crimean War. We were especially struck by some of the eye-witness accounts of the battle. In particular, we were fascinated by this account of the Light Brigade’s charge, as described by an officer. The Archive contains 1000s of stories about the Light Brigade and the Battle of Balaclava – with some amazing reports by people who witnessed the

Continue Reading

Tags

Saving Seamen’s Lives – Blog #1 by Edmund King

We are delighted to introduce Edmund King to The BNA blog. Ed was Head of the British Library Newspaper Library and Newspaper Librarian from 1999 until retirement from his role earlier this year. Ed will be writing several guest posts here on The British Newspaper Archive blog in the coming months. We’re really looking forward to reading more. Let’s begin with Ed’s first BNA blog post, recalling the life and work of Robert Stevenson, entitled, ‘Saving seamen’s lives’ . . . 

Continue Reading

Tags

The Death of W.G. Grace – 23 October 1915

William Gilbert Grace, better known as W.G. Grace, died on 23 October 1915. An expert with both bat and ball, Dr Grace was probably the most influential players in the development of cricket, and is generally regarded as one of the greatest players of all time. The Archive contains 1000s of stories about his career as a first class cricketer – he played at the top level for 44 years. Indeed, a quick search for ‘W.G. Grace’ currently returns 3,650

Continue Reading

Tags

Dr Crippen – Found Guilty of Murder on 22 October 1910

Dr Hawley Harvey Crippen (aka Dr Crippen) was found guilty of murder at the Central Criminal Court in the Old Bailey, on 22 October 1910. He was later sentenced to death, and was hanged at Pentonville Prison in London. Famously, Dr Crippen was the first criminal to be arrested thanks to the new invention of wireless telegraphy. As the Crippen case represents a famous episode in criminal history, we’ve posted below two stories that report on the court case and

Continue Reading

Tags

‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ – John Barnes and ‘The Daily Gleaner’ Newspaper

We enjoyed learning about the family history of John Barnes in this week’s episode of ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ The programme highlighted the fascinating life of John’s grandfather, Frank Hill, who played a leading role in Jamaica’s struggle for independence – so the programme was an excellent mix of genealogy and political history. As Frank Hill was a journalist (and playwright), the programme featured dozens of clippings from historical newspapers that were published in Jamaica. Indeed, if you

Continue Reading

Tags

‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ – John Barnes, BBC1, Wednesday 17 October, 21:00

We’re looking forward to learning about the ancestors of John Barnes in tonight’s episode of ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ The listing for the show on the BBC website mentions ‘secret telegrams’ and internment, so we think this will be a very interesting programme, which will shed light on Jamaica’s struggle for independence. Oh, and we’ll be looking out for any historical newspapers that are used in the research on his ancestors. – BBC1, Wednesday 17 October, 21:00. –

Continue Reading

Tags

Oscar Wilde – Born in Dublin on 16 October 1854

Born To Be Wilde! To celebrate the birthday of Oscar Wilde, we’ve posted two stories from 1894 that provide a glimpse of his wit, character and taste in literature. The Archive contains 1000s of interesting stories about Oscar Wilde. In particular, there are 100s of stories about the trial of Oscar Wilde. Indeed, if you do a search on his name, you’ll notice that, in 1895, you’ll notice a massive increase in the number of newspaper reports about Oscar Wilde.

Continue Reading

Tags