Announcements: September 2011

NEW Project and Database

The East India Company at Home, 1757-1857

The website for the eagerly anticipated The East India Company at Home project at the University of Warwick is now live: Over the next few weeks and months the website will be developing a range of bibliographical, online and other resources relevant to research on country houses, the East India Company, and Georgian and Victorian material culture, as well as a project database, and will continue to keep members updated on relevant news and events. You can also join the project by completing an online membership form through their website.

Please stay tuned for a guest blog introducing this initiative by Dr. Kate Smith, postdoctoral fellow on the project.

NEW East India Company gallery at the National Maritime Museum

National Maritime Museum, London

A new permanent gallery on the East India Company opens at the National Maritime Museum this month, exploring the history and continuing relevance of Britain’s trade with Asia.

Seen through the eye of the East India Company, a company that once had a monopoly on all English trade to Asia, the exhibition showcases some of the museum’s collection, including swords, sailors’ journals, and navigational instruments.

[BBC History Magazine website]

To celebrate its opening, the NMM is organising a series of events between October 2011 and February 2012. Please see the Traders Unpacked website for details of these events, and the gallery website for further details on the ‘Traders: the East India Company and Asia’ gallery.


October is Black History Month

For details of news and events around the country, please see the Black History Month website.

Everywhere in Chains Exhibition

Big Pit: National Coal Museum, Blaenafon, Torfaen, Wales

19th September – 25th November, 2011

An exhibition examing the history of slavery in Wales.

See the event website for further details.

Drop-in Session: Black History Month, For King and Country

Imperial War Museum, London

8th – 9th October & 15th – 16th October, 2011

11.00am-12.30pm & 2pm-4pm

Your chance to examine objects from the First World War Collection and learn more of the personal stories of black soldiers who fought for the British Empire on the Western Front and in Palestine.  This session will allow visitors to explore familiar themes relating to this history and examine less visited themes from this global conflict. Free drop-in activity suitable for all ages with parental supervision.

See the event website for further details.

Drop-in Session: Black History Month: Mother Country

Imperial War Museum, London

15th October 2011, 12.30pm-2pm

Stephen Bourne’s book, Mother Country – Britain’s Black Community on the Home Front 1939-45 unearths a ‘hidden history’ of Britain and the Second World War.  Stephen’s illustrated talk will highlight some of the forgotten Britons he features in the book including the community leaders Dr Harold Moody and Learie Constantine.  Also included will be Esther Bruce (Stephen’s adopted aunt), black evacuees, singer Adeladie Hall, bandleader Ken ‘Snakehips’ Johnson (who was killed in an air raid in London), BBC broadcaster Una Marsen, and black senior citizens who Stephen interviewed about the home front in African and the Caribbean. Free talk, no booking required.

See the event website for further details.

BBC History Festival

Various locations, Taunton, Somerset

15th October 2011

Celebrate 2,000 years of history with a day of archive films, re-enctors, heritage displays, talks and activities for al the family.

Family History Fair

Horntye Park Sports Complex, Bohemia Road, Hastings

16th October, 2011, 10am-4.30pm

The Hastings and Rother Family History Society annual fair will include talks by Jayne Shrimpton on ‘Dating & Understanding Family Photographs 1840-1930 From The Family Archive’, Celia Heritage on ‘Newspapers For Family Historians – How To Get The Most From Them’ and Dr Nick Barratt on ‘”State Of The Nation” – How The Entire Sector Has Changed Over The Last 25 Years’. Exhibitors include the Families in British India Society, and may thus be of particular interest to the readers of this blog.

See the event website for further details.

Workshop: My Ancestor Was Irish

Society of Genealogists, 14 Charterhouse Buildings, Goswell Road London EC1M 7BA

15th October 2011, 10.30am

Full day workshop on tracing Irish ancestors with Michael Gandy, Alan Stewart & Else Churchill (£24/£30), booking required.

See the Society for Genealogists events website for further details.

Family History Event: Back to Our Past

Industries Hall, RDS, Dublin, Ireland

21st-23rd October, 2011

Ireland’s only national genealogy and family history event, Back To Our Past, returns to the Royal Dublin Society this October, following the first, hugely successful event last year.

[Family Tree Magazine]

Admission 10 euros; 5 euros for advanced booking.

See event website for further details.

Workshop: Researching ancestors who served in the army in India

The British Library, London

10th November 2011, 2pm – 5pm

Free workshop on tracing members of the Indian armed forces. APAC Reference Services working in tandem with the Families In British India Society (FIBIS) are delighted to present a specialized session looking at biographical sources for military personnel. No previous knowledge of the subject is expected or required. If, therefore, you believe you have European ancestors who served in the Indian sub-continent whether as officers or private soldiers, please book your free place by contacting

See the event website for further details.

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