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Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine - - AROUND BRITAIN -

opened in 1925 and over the years has em­ployed hun­dreds of thou­sands of lo­cal peo­ple, and was one of 46 coal mines in Not­ting­hamshire in the early 1960s. Ruth says: “Re­lated min­ing col­lec­tions are sub­stan­tial, rang­ing from col­liery ledgers so large it takes two peo­ple to carry them, to This month there are four com­plete prod­ucts to­gether worth £49. Th­ese in­clude a col­lec­tion of tran­scribed 17th-cen­tury reg­is­ters from 24 parishes, the Not­ting­ham Date Book, a late Vic­to­rian direc­tory cov­er­ing both Not­ting­hamshire and Der­byshire (worth £17) and Ab­stracts of Not­ting­hamshire Mar­riages. This source was pub­lished in 1935 and con­tains ab­stracts of mar­riage li­cences at the Archdea­con’s Court (1701-1753) and ab­stracts of Mar­riage Bonds and Al­le­ga­tions at South­well (1755-1853). hous­ing schemes at Blid­worth and Cot­grave col­lieries, to the payslips of War­sop’s col­liery deputy.”

An­other col­lec­tion re­lates to Thomas Ce­cil Howitt, an ar­chi­tect who af­ter the First World War de­vel­oped thou­sands of lo­cal au­thor­ity hous­ing schemes in Not­ting­ham. This lit­tle-used mma­te­rial in­cludes con­tracts that ccon­tain de­tails of in­di­vid­u­als who wworked on the con­struc­tion projects, pplus there is a large num­ber of ppho­tographs “in­clud­ing one of cchil­dren play­ing in the middle of aan empty road named Mid­dle­ton BBoule­vard. Lo­cals will know thhat road to­day as a three-lane ccar­riage­way that forms part of thhe city’s ring road,” says Ruth.

Not­ting­hamshire Ar­chives holds a great many fam­ily and es­tate ccol­lec­tions, in­clud­ing ti­tle deeds, reen­tals and leases, sur­veys and vval­u­a­tions, maps and plans and ees­tate/house­hold ac­counts and ccor­re­spon­dence. Some of the laanded fam­i­lies in­clude the Belper (SStrutt) fam­ily of Kingston on SSoar, the Edge fam­ily of Strel­ley aand the Sav­ile fam­ily of Ruf­ford. RRuth says: “Es­tate col­lec­tions are not usu­ally the first port of call for fam­ily his­to­ri­ans. But if your great grand­fa­ther worked on the Ed­win­stowe por­tion of the Ruf­ford es­tate, we can tell you how much he earned in De­cem­ber 1837.”

Ruth says that now the re­fur­bish­ment is com­plete they are turn­ing their at­ten­tion to other ar­eas, such as sup­port­ing lo­cal his­tory groups seek­ing fund­ing to de­velop his­tor­i­cal projects. They are now work­ing with groups in Ed­win­stowe, Ever­ton and the Not­ting­hamshire Deaf So­ci­ety. They also hope to re­de­velop the web­site over the next year, and while there are no firm plans as yet for whole­sale digi­ti­sa­tion, they are ‘look­ing closely’ at the county’s parish and elec­toral reg­is­ters. “Many peo­ple through­out the world have an in­ter­est in Not­ting­hamshire’s her­itage,” says Ruth, “and they are just as vi­tal a part of our au­di­ence as those who are able to visit us in per­son.” If you are un­able to visit the ar­chives, there are strong lo­cal stud­ies col­lec­tions through­out the county’s li­brary net­work in­clud­ing Mans­field, Work­sop, Not­ting­ham and Ne­wark.

Other sig­nif­i­cant re­sources re­side at the Manuscripts and Spe­cial Col­lec­tions Depart­ment at the Univer­sity of Not­ting­ham. Its most heav­ily used ge­nealog­i­cal col­lec­tion is the bonds and al­le­ga­tions for mar­riage li­cences granted by the Archdea­conry Court of Not­ting­ham from 1594 to 1884, which can sup­ple­ment in­for­ma­tion pro­vided in the parish reg­is­ters at Not­ting­hamshire Ar­chives. It also looks af­ter reg­is­ters of sev­eral non­con­formist churches and a num­ber of prom­i­nent Not­ting­hamshire fam­i­lies and es­tates. Plus, if you’re re­search­ing your an­ces­tor’s em­ploy­ment and work­ing life, there are im­por­tant col­lec­tions of lo­cal trade union records, re­lat­ing to hosiery and to­bacco work­ers, plus the Amal­ga­mated So­ci­ety of Op­er­a­tive Lace Mak­ers and Aux­il­iary Work­ers (1851-1973), which in­clude mem­ber­ship reg­is­ters.

Chil­dren in the 1940s play on what is now the cen­tral reser­va­tion of Mid­dle­ton Boule­vard, Not­ting­hamshire

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