Monthly Archives: March 2015

All for Eleven pounds five shillings

In the middle of March 1899 Caroline Ansell died at Leavesden asylum in Hertfordshire and a post mortem concluded that her death had been caused by Phosphorous poisoning. The Ansell family lived near St Pancras in London. One daughter, Caroline, had been an inmate at Leavesden asylum. Their other daughter, Mary Ann, was employed as […]

Mrs. Pickersgill’s Cremation

The London Letter of the Sheffield Daily Telegraph of Friday 27th March 1885 states that: ‘I am able to state that at the crematory erected near Woking by the Cremation Society of England, the body of a lady was on Wednesday reduced to ashes, in the presence of the representatives of the deceased. The cremation […]

An apology

I’m sorry there has not been a blog on this Sunday. The past 14 days have been quite hectic with the past 7 being a step up from the earlier 7. The coming Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday are keeping up the trend but I shall hopefully get a post out by mid-week and back to the normal Sunday […]

Beatrice Potter visits Joseph Chamberlain, family and a visitor

Have you ever thought what a grand Victorian home would look like?  Well – at the other end of this piece you’ll have an interesting description – but don’t jump to the end just yet. The next 500 or so words paint the background. Back in 2001 I completed an ‘Open University Diploma in Modern […]

Lionel Peter twiss – faster than sound

This week’s blog 12 months ago had a piece about Fairey Aviation and their aircraft including a single-seat Transonic and Supersonic Research Aircraft – the Fairey FD2 that ‘may attain level speeds as high as Mach 1.5 (990 mph at 36,000 feet). Its maiden flight, with ex Royal Navy Lieutenant-Commander Peter Twiss in the cockpit, […]


Richard Hakluyt was an English writer of the late 16th – early 17th centuries who actively promoted the settlement of North America by the English through his many written works. In his writings he often used the word Cafar or Kaffir which translated into infidels or disbelievers. He refers to slaves as Cafari. On early […]