SALVATION ARMY RECORDS The Salvation Army’s International Heritage Centre ( salvationarmy.org. uk/international- heritage- centre) holds a rich collection of material about the history and life of the movement. If your ancestor was a member of the clergy (an ‘officer’), records may be available relating to training and their career. Complete service records are more common for officers retiring after 1941 as documents before that were destroyed during the Second World War.
Very few records have survived for members (‘soldiers’). Soldiers’ Rolls still exist for some corps, but you would need to know the name of the corps that your ancestor attended before contacting the Centre.
Material is also available for the Salvation Army’s rescue homes for women, maternity homes, and mother and baby homes. In addition, there are some records for adoptions arranged through The Salvation Army (18851963). Most records relating to individuals are closed for 75 years, while some of the social work records are closed for 100 years. NEWSPAPERS You can find out more about the Salvation Army’s activities in the area your ancestors lived by looking at newspapers. Many British Library national and local newspapers can be viewed and searched online at britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk (also available through findmypast. co.uk). Alternatively, if your local library subscribes to the 19th Century British Library Newspapers resource, you may be able to access it for free at home. Read William Booth’s seminal work to find out more about his ideas for welfare in Victorian Britain. You can borrow it from your library or download the Kindle edition from Amazon for free at amzn. to/1JO3VIH. Another download source can be found at archive.org.