Archive

Our Criminal Past

‘Our Criminal Past’ is an interdisciplinary research network of UK-based stakeholders who are working academically and/or professionally in the field of the criminal, legal and penal history of Britain.

The creation of the network was in recognition of the growing importance of ‘our criminal past’, not only to academics but also to archivists, heritage professionals, educationalists and others in the wider community who have an investment in how our criminal past is to be preserved, presented and transmitted. Three inter-related themes have been identified as important areas of cross and multidisciplinary interest in terms of previous, current and future research that have contemporary and cultural significance beyond the academia. These are: Digitisation: Social Media and Crime History; Educating Historians of Crime: Classroom, Archive, Community; and Representing Penal Histories: Displaying and Narrating our Criminal Past.

Our series of network events brought together experts from a range of disciplines, including history, criminology, education, tourism and cultural studies, with archivists and those engaged in an educational and heritage capacity in museums and prisons. The events were a forum for discussion and debate about future strategic research planning and collaborations, the sustainability of research in relation to new technology and funding streams, and the role of individuals, communities and institutions in shaping and preserving our criminal past. Through the sharing of expertise and good practice, we explored ideas that would lead to new projects in the history of crime, thus ‘Caring for the Future’ of the history of crime.

 

Key Contacts

Professor Helen Johnston, University of Hull: h.johnston@hull.ac.uk

Professor Heather Shore, Leeds Beckett University: h.shore@leedsbackett.ac.uk

 

Events

Event 1: Our Criminal Past: Digitisation, Social Media and Crime History, London Metropolitan Archives, 17 May 2013

Event 2: Our Criminal Past: Educating Historians of Crime: Classroom, Archive, Community, Broadcasting Place, Leeds Beckett University, 6 September 2013

Event 3: Our Criminal Past: Representing Penal Histories: Displaying and Narrating the Criminal Past, Galleries of Justice, Nottingham, 31 January 2014

Latest Updates on Twitter

The next event in the Leeds Historical Criminology seminar series takes place at @becketthistory on 19th June. See details and tickets here: https://t.co/aDlmrCj4O7

Researching Criminal Ancestors - Hornsea & District Civic Society - Our Criminal Ancestors - looking forward to this talk on Weds evening. #crimhist https://t.co/ytDqgaGb5S

This week's female convict on display in British prison museums is Phoebe Harris, who was burnt at the stake outside of Newgate prison in 1786 for counterfeiting coins. She is on display in a video at @JusticeMuseum #WomensHistoryMonth #publichistory #museums #crimehistory

Help transcribe prison record of Dennis Corbett convicted of larceny in 1873 at 14 years old #crimehistory #childhist https///criminalcharacters.com/.jpg

Up bright & early to welcome @BBCYork to @RiponMuseums to chat to them about our new exhibition Secrets in the Cellar

Send a little girl named Rose Ann Reilly, aged nine years to St. Joseph’s Industrial School, until she attains the age of sixteen years. She was frequently found begging on the streets of the town at late hours. Northern Whig - Wednesday 06 August 1924

This weekend I got see the new 'Road to Recovery' exhibition by the @wyorksarchives, which focuses on the Stanley Royd Asylum. It was great, and I was struck by how the issue of surveillance dominated the institution's design - v. similar to penal structures.

Fyi @MrsAlghrani @lucie_wade @ourcriminalpast @AnnaLoisMckay https://t.co/DZCVEbu0UQ

trespass in search of game 1891 #Hampshire Observer Mar 3rd @HantsArchives defendants said they were hunting #hedgehogs 🦔🦔🦔Fined 3s each and 7s costs @hedgehogsociety @WildlifeOrphan1 @hedgehogreview @ourcriminalpast @thevicsoc @HantsPolHistory @RuralCrimeTeam @ChrisGPackham