Eyewitness Accounts series - eg
London's Great Plague by Samuel Pepys,
Battles of the Crimean War by William H Russell
and Diary of a Nursing Sister, by Anon.

Above: They Saw it Happen - a series of books featuring eyewitness accounts of famous historical events.
Barbara Rowland collection

Aspects of Local History Series - eg
Memories of the Cornish Fishing Industry
and Memories of the Staffordshire Potteries

Medieval history
Time Travellers' Guide to Medieval England by Dr Ian Mortimer

Elizabethan history
Time Travellers' Guide to Elizabethan England by Dr Ian Mortimer

Victorian history
Mayhew's London by Henry Mayhew
Kilvert's Diary 1870-1879 by Robert Francis Kilvert
Ashburton in Late Victorian Days  by Prof. John Satterly, published in the Transactions of the Devonshire Association vol 84, 1952


Project Gutenberg. Over 56,000 free eBooks. Search or browse through the catalogue.

A Vision of Britain through Time. Has statistics, censuses, historical maps and more.

Over 500 programmes on iPlayer Radio from Melvyn Bragg's In Our Time series. Eg The Black Death, The Gin Craze, The Great Exhibition of 1851.

The British Library Listening Project

The Listening Project is an audio archive of conversations recorded by the BBC. People are invited to share an intimate conversation with a close friend or relative, to be recorded and broadcast (in edited form) by the BBC and curated and archived in full by the British Library. These one-to-one conversations, lasting up to an hour and taking a topic of the speakers' choice, collectively form a picture of our lives and relationships today.

BBC World Service Witness. 'The story of our times told by the people who were there.' 10 minute episodes, in collections African History, Scientific History, World War 1, World War 2, Black History, Women in History, Indian History, the Vietnam War and more.

British Pathe News


'a digital collection of thousands of wonderful pictures, stories, letters, sounds and movies from across the past'

Medieval history
The Paston Letters

The British Library

'Find out about social history in the Middle Ages by exploring illuminated manuscripts and articles revealing the everyday lives of people across the social spectrum.'                                                     Features, articles, books, videos etc. about medieval life.

Discover Your Ancestors, produced as a yearly print magazine and in a monthly online format, is basically aimed at those starting out with family history research. However, as the publishers say, '
Pervading the stories and expertly authored articles is the underlying theme of exploring social history – how our ancestors lived their lives.'

BBC History Magazine
Both recommended by Aryanna Japhayel

19th Century periodicals
                                                                Places to Visit

V & A Museum of Childhood, Bethnal Green, London

Lists of local museums



                                                              Specific Topics
                                                                    At War

Letters from the Trenches, A Soldier of the Great War by Bill Lamin
Dorothea's War, the Diary of a First World War Nurse, by Richard Crewdson
Mass observation - We are at War, by Simon Garfield
Mass observation - Private Battles, by Simon Garfield
Mass observation - Our Hidden Lives, by Simon Garfield
Nella Last's War, the 2nd World War diaries of Housewife, 49, ed by Richard Broad and Suzie Fleming
The View from the Corner Shop: the Diary of a Yorkshire Shop Assistant in Wartime, by Kathleen Hey, ed by Robert Malcolmson and Patricia Malcolmson
Landgirl by Anne Hall - her 6 years in the Women's Land Army
Home Guard manual  - a reprint of the actual manual of 1941
The Children Who Built Victorian Britain. In 3 parts

Children in the Care of the Children's Society, 1881-1981

Bastardy and Baby Farming in Victorian England

6000 Children's books online, free to read

Were Those the Days? (A Victorian Education), by H C Barnard
A London Child of the 1870s by M V Hughes
Our Baby for Mothers and Nurses, a reprint of an Edwardian baby manual, by Mrs J Langton Hewer
How We Played, Games from Childhood Past, by Caroline Goodfellow
A Wiltshire Childhood by Ida Gandy
An Oxford Childhood, Pride of the Morning, by Phyl Surman
A Birmingham Boyhood, 1923-40, by Eric Armstrong

Right: Autobiography of Christopher Robin Milne
Barbara Rowland collection
Book recommended to the group by Barbara Rowland

Below left and below right:
West Country Book No 1 by J C Trewin.
It contains reminiscences of being a boy in Bodmin
Barbara Rowland collection
Book recommended to the group by John Morris
Children's Voices of the Second World War, by Helen Finch
Growing up in the Forties, by Grace Horseman
When the Children Came Home, Stories from Wartime Evacuees, by Julie Summers

A 1960s Childhood by Paul Feeney
The Baby Boomer Generation by Paul Feeney

Crime and Punishment
The Floating Brothel: The Extraordinary True Story of an Eighteenth Century Ship and its Cargo of Female Convicts, by Siân Rees
The Prison Cookbook, by Peter Higginbotham

Health and Disease
Cholera and the Thames
Infectious Diseases in History
Brought to Life, Exploring the Hist
ory of Medicine
Images from Wellcome Trust Ltd.
History of vaccines
History of epidemics

Immigration and Emigration

The Diary of Joseph Sams, an Emigrant in the "Northumberland" 1874
The Governesses, letters from the Colonies 1862-1882 by Patrician Clarke

Shire books - cover a variety of occupations (eg shoemaking, ironmongers, undertakers, sailors etc)
Miss Weeton's Journal of a Governess, by Miss Weeton
The Diary of a Georgian Shopkeeper by Thomas Turner
Victorian Farm by Alex Langlands, Peter Ginn and Ruth Goodman
Below Stairs by Margaret Powell
Climbing the Stairs by Margaret Powell
Pitman's Common Commodities and Industries
Forgotten Women - The Scientists by Zing Tsjeng


The Workhouse by Norman Longmate
The Workhouse Cookbook, by Peter Higginbotham
                The Working Class
The Working Class Movement Library
Rural Life
A Yeoman of Kent: An Account of Richard Hayes, 1725-1790, and of the Village of Cobham in which He Lived and Worked, by Ralph Arnold
Matthew and George Culley, Travel Journals and Letters 1765-1798, by Anne Orde
Cottage Life in a Hertfordshire Village by Edwin Grey

Women's Lives
The English Housewife, by Gervase Markham. Modern edition ed Michael R Best
Mrs Miles's Diary (a wartime journal of a housewife on the Home Front), by Constance Miles, ed S V Partington
Out of the Dolls' House (the story of women in the twentieth century), by Angela Holdsworth
What Every Woman Should Know (fascimile pages from women's lifestyle pages in the Mail, 1930s), by Christopher and Kirsty Hudson
Nella Last in the 1950s, by Patricia and Robert Malcolmson

                          The Home
The Name of the Room, by Tony Rivers

Costume and Fashion
The Habits of Good Society: a Handbook of Etiquette for Ladies and Gentlemen. 1859.
Has sections on dress.
See Hats and Other Clothes for excerpts - Accessed 30-06-2019

History Cookbook. Designed for young people, with recipes to try and podcasts to watch..

A Noble Boke off Cookry, ed. Mrs Alexander Napier,

The Accomplisht Cook, or The Art and Mystery of Cookery, by Robert May 1685

The Receipt Book of Mrs Ann Blencowe, Guy Chapman, London 1925 (originally written in 1694)

The Art of Cookery made Plain and Easy, by Hannah Glasse 1747

Modern Cookery in All Its Branches, by Eliza Acton

Above: The Old Farmer's Almanac Colonial Cookbook, ed. Clarissa M Silitch
Barbara Rowland collection
Above: Indian Cookin', compiled by Herb WalkerBarbara Rowland collection
Above: A Facsimile of "American Cookery" 1796, by Amelia Simmons
Barbara Rowland collection

The Virginia Housewife, or Methodical Cook,  by Mrs Mary Randolph 1836

Mrs Beeton's Household Management

Above: The Rituals of Dinner, by Margaret Visser, 1991
Aryanna Japheyal collection
Above: The Victory Cookbook , by Marguerite Patten
Above right: Post-War Kitchen, by Marguerite Patten

See also: Cookery Books, a sub-menu of Food

Food manufacturers:
Two articles on Foster Clark

The Christmas Chronicles, by Nigel Slater