Author Archives: victoriadraper24

From Gunpowder to Fire Engines: The Role of the Cannonier in looking after Norwich’s seventeenth-century fire Fighting Equipment

Today, the Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service protects Norwich, along with the rest of the county, using dozens of emergency vehicles and a range of advanced equipment. In the seventeenth century (when most buildings were made of wood) the technology … Continue reading

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‘It was a dreadful sight to see!’ Descriptions of the Crimean War

‘It was a dreadful sight to see! Both to my left and right men were cut away from me. I thought it would be my turn every minute but, thank God I have escaped as yet.’ These words were written … Continue reading

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‘I suppose you think that I am shot’: Problems writing home from the Crimean War.

‘I suppose that you think that I am shot since you have not heard from me for so long but thank God I am not yet but I have had some near escapes.’ These are the words of Private Thomas … Continue reading

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A military wedding at Great Yarmouth and a mutiny

For couples where the groom was serving in the military, time could be of the essence to marry before his regiment moved on, or ship sailed again and many military occupations are represented in marriage licence bonds.  This is particularly … Continue reading

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The Mackenzie family of Scotland and a Norfolk romance

The unusual survival of some letters, found with the marriage licence bond for Henry Bathurst and Frances Mackenzie, 14 July 1807, give us a rare insight into a mother in Scotland eagerly awaiting news of her daughter’s marriage in the … Continue reading

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Tales of the Great and the Not So Good

Marriage licences were often favoured by families of high social class since they allowed the couple privacy, ability to choose their parish of marriage and were faster to arrange than banns.  The marriage licence could also be a status symbol … Continue reading

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Did your ancestors marry by licence?

If you are researching your family tree and have come across an entry in a parish register which notes that your ancestors married by licence, then marriage licence bonds can be a valuable resource.  Although they do not include marriages … Continue reading

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Memories of Christmas from a German Prisoner of War

Soon after the Second World War ended German POWs were released across the country. Over 100 prisoners were released from Mousehold Camp based in Norwich. One such prisoner was Hans Dittrich who was interviewed shortly before release. Dittrich obviously appreciated … Continue reading

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