This week at the Archive we have made available 164,440 new pages to view. We are delighted to welcome two brand new titles to the collection: the Middlesex County Times and the Sunday Independent (Dublin).
We also have significant updates to some of our existing titles, including The People, where added years span 1881 to 1980, and the Penny Illustrated Paper. There are also updates to the Daily Gazette for Middlesbrough and the Yorkshire Evening Press.
This week’s new pages offer rich coverage of the 1880s and 1890s, with the Penny Illustrated Paper featuring a wealth of rare pictorial material. An event which rocked the nation in 1892 was the early death of Prince Albert Victor, the Duke of Clarence, at the age of 28, weeks before he was due to marry Princess May of Teck. He was the eldest son of the Prince of Wales, later Edward VII, and was second in line to the throne. Using these newly added pages, we can trace the news of the Duke’s illness breaking to the announcement of his sudden death.
The Penny Illustrated Paper, published on 16 January 1892, reports on the Duke’s illness. At the time of going to print the Duke was still alive, however he had passed away on 14 January 1892. The paper reports how ‘the Duke of Clarence, in the very midst of the glad betrothal festivities at Sandringham, was struck down, to the general regret of the public, with influenza and pneumonia.’
‘The Duke of Clarence, tall and slender, is not of robust frame and has seemed for a long time past not have enjoyed very good health…Happily, he has youth on his side.’ The paper is hopeful of his survival, and anticipates his wedding to Princess May of Teck on 27 February 1892.
However, on the same day, the Middlesex County Times announces the Duke’s death. He is ‘supposed to have caught a chill when attending the funeral of Prince Victor of Hohenlohe, at Sunninghill.’ The Duke’s last moments are described in harrowing detail, as he ‘was painfully delirious.’ However, ‘he rallied sufficiently to recognise the loving and anxious faces gathered round his bedside,’ which included those of his parents the Prince and Princess of Wales, Prince George (later King George V), and his fiancée Princess May of Teck, who would go on to marry Prince George instead and become Queen Mary.
His funeral was held at St George’s Chapel, Windsor. His grandmother, Queen Victoria, was dissuaded from attending the ceremony, having ‘yielded most unwillingly to the Prince and Princess of Wales’s reiterated entreaties that she would not expose herself to the risk of catching cold on the journey to and from Windsor in this uncertain weather.’ A special funeral ceremony was held at Osborne House for her benefit.
Since the Duke of Clarence’s early death, his character has come under much scrutiny. He has even been suspected of being Jack the Ripper. However, the Penny Illustrated Paper offers a different view, recalling how he won ‘hosts of friends’ whilst studying at Trinity College Cambridge, and that in his ‘various public speeches he evinced that happy knack of saying the right thing in the right way at the right moment.’ His affection for his mother and sisters is also noted as being a ‘one most remarkable feature in the Prince’s character.’
|Middlesex County Times||1866-1868, 1871, 1883-1905, 1907, 1911, 1918-1919|
|Sunday Independent (Dublin)||1994, 1996-1997|
This week we have updated seven of our existing titles.
You can learn more about each of the titles we add to every week by clicking on their names. On each paper’s title page, you can read a FREE sample issue, learn more about our current holdings, and our plans for digitisation.
|The People||1881-1909, 1923-1933, 1950-1976, 1980|
|Newport & Market Drayton Advertiser||1871|
|Yorkshire Evening Press||1911|
|Sunday World (Dublin)||1998-2002|
|Daily Gazette for Middlesbrough||1906, 1911, 1934|
|Penny Illustrated Paper||1875-1880, 1882-1888, 1890-1899|
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