Norfolk’s New Railways: The Arguments For and Against the Introduction of Railways in 19th Century Norfolk

The First Line

The coming of the railways to Norfolk revolutionized many aspects of county life. The first railway from London to Norfolk arrived in the 1840s, when the line was opened via Wymondham and Cambridge and, from 1849, the Great Eastern Railway linked Norwich to London, with shorter journey times.

Continue reading
Posted in Snapshots from the Archive | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Reading from the Archives: Out of the Mouths of Babes

For our next Reading from the Archives session, we have a special Family Friendly theme featuring documents written by children. We have once again delved into our collections to uncover the words of children from the pages of our documents, and bring them to life.

Here is a sneak peek at a couple of the documents we will be looking at during our brand new session.

Around 1855, young Moses Frosdick wrote a two sided letter (NRO, MC 392/10-11, 726X2) to his uncle in his very best joined up handwriting. He opens with a standard formal greeting:

Continue reading
Posted in NRO Research Bloggers | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cures for all!

Just over 2 years since it was first brought to the public’s attention and for most people focus is still very much on COVID 19. In the past two years we have learnt a lot about social distancing, mask wearing, and testing. Science has also brought in vaccines and new treatments. In the days of all of this advancement in medical practices it is interesting to look back at aliments and cures of the past.

In the seventeenth century people were concerned about plague. The Great Plague occurred in London in 1665-6 and spread across the country. But this wasn’t the first epidemic of plague in this century. Previous epidemics had taken place in 1603, 1625 and again in 1636- though in smaller numbers. In Norwich the outbreak of the 1666 plague could be seen in the burials of the parish register of St John Timberhill, among other Norwich parishes (NRO, PD 74/1).

Parish Register of St John Timberhill. PD 74/1
Continue reading
Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

A Sound Archiving Experience by Katie Sarginson

Discover the audio archiving journey of Katie Sarginson, who joined Norfolk Record Office’s Unlocking Our Sound Heritage team in 2021 for a six month internship.

“In September 2021, I was employed by Norfolk Record Office as their Sound Archive Intern for the Unlocking Our Sound Heritage project. Unlocking Our Sound Heritage (UOSH) is a project led by the British Library and supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund with an aim to preserve and provide access to thousands of at-risk sound recordings from across the United Kingdom. After volunteering for the project during my final year at university, I was excited to apply and be accepted as the Sound Archive Intern at NRO – uncovering sound recordings from across the 20th and 21st centuries that were at risk of being lost. 

Continue reading
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

Midshipman’s Log of Robert Horace Walpole 1870-1: The Start of a Life of Adventure

Robert Horace Walpole was born in 1854 and joined the Royal Navy in 1867.  This blog is an account of Walpole’s Midshipman’s log on HMS Bristol from February 1870 to January 1871.  No great adventures are recorded here; the predominant theme is officer training and the ship’s routine duties protecting British interests on the seas.

HMS Bristol was the name ship of the Bristol class of wooden screw frigates, ships that had both steam propulsion and sail.  It was also a training ship for officer cadets such as Walpole.  Captain Wilson was its commanding officer.

Continue reading
Posted in NRO Research Bloggers | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Hidden Stories behind the Asylum Records

Written by Christine Shackell, NRO research blogger

The Thorpe Asylum casebooks held at the Norfolk Record Office give us a snapshot in time of the lives of the patients admitted there. Extending the search to include other records gives us a fuller picture of their lives. This is part of the page relating to George Howman’s admission to hospital on 29 June 1883 when he was 62 years old.

Records of St Andrew’s Hospital, Thorpe St Andrew 1883 NRO, SAH 271/47 case number 185
Continue reading
Posted in NRO Research Bloggers | Tagged , , , , , | 14 Comments

Record Office Recipes

Archives give us a unique insight into the kitchens of our ancestors  We can discover ingredients unfamiliar to our modern taste buds and methods that are no longer used in a modern kitchen.  We can also discover surprisingly familiar ingredients and methods which wouldn’t look out of place in a 21st century cookery book.

The following recipes have been transcribed, the spellings are left in the original form  e.g. flower = flour, where more of an explanation is required this is provided in brackets.  Also note that Y n = then and Y t = that.

Continue reading
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ballgowns and Dinner Invitations

We recently held one of our popular Reading from the Archives events with a very swish title – Ballgowns and Dinner Invitations. Planning for this event was an opportunity to scour the archives using our online catalogue, and find some documents that would give us an insight into what it was like to attend a fancy dinner, a themed ball and discover what one might wear for such an occasion.

Continue reading
Posted in NRO Research Bloggers | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment