Blogs

Portraits of the criminal past

May 26, 2020

A new blog devoted to a fascinating collection of criminal ‘mugshots’ held by Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire Archives has been launched by City Archivist, Phil Astley.

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Cot in a Victorian bedroom

Bastardy before the courts in nineteenth-century Hull

March 16, 2020

Dr Joanne Chilman looks at bastardy cases that came before the courts in Hull during the nineteenth century to reveal the rich history of the women and families involved in these courtroom trials.

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Crime, criminality and the provincial press

March 16, 2020

In his latest blog, Dr Ashley Borrett examines the pages of the provincial press and reveals the ‘voices’ of some of the key players in the crime and criminal justice debates of interwar Hull.

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Working in partnership with the Ripon Museums Trust

March 16, 2020

Professor Helen Johnston and Professor Heather Shore, from the Our Criminal Ancestors project, have been working with the Ripon Museums Trust on a number of projects over the past few years.

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Five women – five families’ search for justice

November 20, 2019

A new book from the team behind hit BBC series Murder, Mystery and My Family features compelling true-crime stories of female killers and their families’ search for justice.

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Exploring female drunkenness in Victorian Lancashire

July 23, 2019

Utilising a range of archival sources, Dr Craig Stafford charts the criminal lives of drunken women in 19th century Lancashire.

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Tracing gang members – the complicated case of Charles ‘Darby’ Sabini

May 14, 2019

With the Peaky Blinders set to return to our screens later this year, Prof Heather Shore takes a look at the complicated lives of one of the families that has featured in the series, the Sabinis.

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graph

Figuring out the past: crime statistics as social history

March 4, 2019

What can crime statistics tell us about the past? Dr Ashley Borrett examines the interwar crime rates for Hull to find out more.

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cover of the Hull and East Riding source guide

WDYTYA? Our Criminal Ancestors in 50 Family History websites to watch in 2019

February 12, 2019

Our Criminal Ancestors features in Who Do You Think You Are? magazine’s 50 websites to watch in 2019.

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Discovering the truth about the lives of Robert Connolly

November 26, 2018

Researcher Eddie Mullan investigates the ‘lives’ of ancestor Robert Connolly, a man who turned out to have a colouful and criminal past.

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bundle of newspapers

Read all about it! Using newspapers in your crime research

September 24, 2018

Dr Ashley Borrett discusses the importance of newspapers when researching the history of crime.

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rows of boxes in an archives

National Archives: Collaboration between the Archive and Higher Education Sectors

July 13, 2018

Our Criminal Ancestors project is featured as a case study in a recent publication from the National Archives.

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Latest Updates on Twitter

The Prison Cell is out now! Answer 1/2 questions to win a free e-book:

2. The ‘Prison Escape’ game uses the cells of which former prison in The Netherlands?
A Norgerhaven
B Breda
C Gevangenpoort

Winning comment picked at random July 17th #prisons https://bit.ly/322OiMP (2/2)

The Prison Cell is out now! Answer 1/2 questions to win a free e-book:

1. In C19th, housing prisoners in individual cells was called the..?

A Separate System
B Silent System
C Lonely System

Winning comment picked at random July 17th #prisons https://bit.ly/322OiMP (1/2)

@OU_Williams @northernhistory @ourcriminalpast @DrewDGray @WelshRaffles @earlypolicing We'd confirm - seems to be wearing an indoor tailcoat and unlikely for a Runner to be armed with a sword in this scenario. @blackpoppies14 has researched the earliest known Met mixed-race officer, Robert Branford, with us 1838-1866:
https://twitter.com/Southwark_News/status/1263560495598129153

@earlypolicing @OU_Williams @northernhistory @ourcriminalpast @DrewDGray @MPSHeritage @WelshRaffles @BritPoliceHist @colpolicemuseum Thomas Latham is noted here. However dates do not coincide.

https://www.blackhistorymonth.org.uk/article/section/bhm-firsts/john-kent-britains-first-black-policeman/

@northernhistory @ourcriminalpast @DrewDGray @MPSHeritage @WelshRaffles @earlypolicing I don't think he's drawn in there as a Runner -- he's getting up from his chair. So it looks like PC Kent of Carlisle Police remains the earliest confirmed (1830s) black constable. There could well be others out there though.

I'm spending today back in the murder files, reading through trial depositions and looking for evidence of detective practice and early CSI techniques. Great to have finally got round to sorting out the data from my last archival visit! I shall report back…😀🔎 #detectives #PhD

The 1810 Bastards Act placed the responsibility for the maintenance of an illegitimate child on the putative father rather than the Parish. Mary Bilham of Carbrooke, Norfolk named Stephen Beeks as the father of her child. Her daughter was baptised in January 1812. #101Documents

2

@victoriansleuth @ourcriminalpast Shouldn't be too difficult to knock up some stocks from a few wooden pallets and some scrap timber, attach some wheels, we're mobile. 🤔😂

I have several 'criminals' in my family tree, who were convicted of theft, poaching, swearing on the highway (!), and keeping a disorderly house 😱 Have you found any criminal ancestors? #AncestryHour

@TheRothOfKhan @PlymCSecResp @CrownhillPolice @PlymASecResp @plymspecial999 @PlymPoliceBSec @PlymouthVPC @CustodyPlymouth @MPSSouthwark @MPSGreenwich @DevonHeritage @HMNBDevonport @NatMuseumRN @theboxplymouth @britainsocean @PlymouthUK2020 @oneplymouth @sarewaddington Fortunately we also have a digitised copy of his divisional ledger entry on M, where he was M341. He'd switched from carman for a haulage company (1911) to labourer by the time he joined the Met, making the transfer to No. 3 (Devonport) Division on 4 July 1917.