Headlines from History – The British Newspaper Archive Blog

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Dunkirk Stories

Christopher Nolan’s film Dunkirk is a powerful portrayal of the rescue of  over 330,000 soldiers from the beach at Dunkirk in northern France.  The film pays tribute to the role of the French and British rearguard, the RAF and the little ships all of who played their part in the evacuation. Following the events of a single day the film compresses into two hours the heroism and tragedy of the events of the nine days between 27 May – 4

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High Society in Clare Balding’s Family Tree

This week’s episode of Who Do You Think You Are? featured sports broadcaster Clare Balding.  The episode examined the business success and intimate lives of her ancestors.  Clare explored both her maternal and paternal lines in an episode which brought her into the circles of high society in both England and America. Famous names appeared from almost every document consulted as Clare examined her maternal line.  This line sees Clare connected to the Earls of Derby, a lineage which stretches

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Remembering Jane Austen

Elizabeth Bennet and Mr Darcy

This day marks the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death. During the last two centuries, Jane Austen has become a household name. Austen and her modest-sized collection of works has enjoyed a vibrant presence in both academia and western culture, from quotes on magnets and clothing to movie adaptations and sequels to her novels. Austen’s name is equally as at home in highbrow literary essays and criticism as it is in contemporary periodicals meant for mass consumption, such as the

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Crime and clogging in Craig Revel Horwood’s family

The Clog Dance

This week’s episode of Who Do You Think You Are? took us down under and all over Australia. Craig Revel Horwood was able to learn how his ancestors on both sides of his family came to be in Australia and what activities occupied their days, from mining for gold to clog dancing. Convicts in the family Craig’s family history journey began with his sister’s retelling of their great-great grandfather Moses Horwood being convicted of theft and transported to Australia. While it is

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Migration and Shipping Titles

Emigrant leaving the harbour. The Graphic. October 1891

    The British Newspaper Archives holds a unique collection of newspapers.  Along with local and national papers, you will find a number of speciality titles.   Here are some of the titles we hold that focus on the themes of migration and shipping. The Homeward Mail from India, China, and the East First published on 1 January 1857 by Messrs. Smith, Elder, & Co. this title is a compendium of political, military, and economic news from the East. A predominant part of

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Artistry and Mystery in Charles Dance’s Family Tree

We thought we would have to wait until the autumn for the return of our favourite television series, but Who Do You Think You Are? is already back on our screens!  The first episode of the new season featured Game of Thrones actor Charles Dance.  The episode featured some startling revelations regarding Charles’ father, and a history of artistry in the family.  The episode was a great illustration of how careful research can gently peel away the layers mystery that

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British reaction to America’s Declaration of Independence

American Declaration of Independence, Philadelphia, 1776

Today, millions of Americans are celebrating the 4th of July, America’s Independence Day.  The day commemorates the date that the Continental Congress signed the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia in 1776.  The event was met with celebrations in the colonies, but what did the British think of this declaration?  We will look through The British Newspaper Archive to understand the reaction of the British press to America’s Declaration of Independence. America’s Revolution At the time of the Declaration of Independence, America

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The month of July

With summer well underway and a new month dawning, we take a look at the month of July with the help of The British Newspaper Archive. What events and holidays of significance took place in July? How have our newspapers covered such happenings? Join us as we explore the history and newspaper coverage of Canada Day, the Battle of the Somme, and Independence Day. Canada Day The national holiday celebrates the anniversary of the enactment of the Constitution Act, which

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On this day, 30 June – Yosemite Valley Grant Act

Yosemite Valley

On this day, 30 June, in 1864, American President Abraham Lincoln signed the Yosemite Valley Grant Act.  The Act gave the Yosemite Valley and Mariposa Big Tree Grove to the state of California, ‘upon the express conditions that the premises shall be held for public use, resort, and recreation’.   Today, more than 4 million people visit the site every year, which has become both a national park and World Heritage Site.  We have rambled through the pages of The British Newspaper

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Headlines from History – Sports

Throughout the month of June, The British Newspaper Archive is celebrating its numerous sporting titles.  Today, we are taking a look at some of the sporting headlines from the newspapers during the month of June regarding tennis, racing, and cricket. According to the Illustrated London News, which published an extensive feature about sports as part of its 100th-anniversary edition, since the turn of the century, sports have become an international spectacle and a global passion.     Throughout our lives,

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