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Thursday, 21 April 2011

Old documents and museum research

If you fancy the idea of working with old documents, here are a few of the museum's current research projects that you may like to try your hand at!

Deeds & Indentures: The Research Team has access to a large number of parchment documents from the 19th century relating to local farming. These are large, difficult to handle and do not lend themselves to copying. Two people usually work on these: they are read, and a précis produced for our databases. If you fancy history in the raw, come and work on these!

Legal documents: Hillman and Bond were a firm of solicitors in Broad Street, Lyme Regis from the end of the 19th century to the end of World War 2. We have been given over 30 volumes of their Copy Letter Books, which will give us an insight into the life of a solicitor and his clients during that period. The main solicitor is Harold John Ramsbotham, and we have already written a short biography partly based on these records, which will soon appear on the museum’s website.

Transcription: We have decided to transcribe information from original documents of census returns, trade directories, burial and parish records to our museum computers. This will provide databases where information can be accessed quickly. We have begun with the Borough burial records!

[Many thanks to Rikey Austin of Alice's Bear Shop, who originally produced these sketches for the recent Industrial Lyme exhibition.]

For more information (or if you would like to get involved yourself) please see Research at Lyme Regis on the main website.

1 comment:

literarylyme said...

Amazing stuff - especally re farming history,