17th Aug – Volunteer’s Wanted! For research into 1830’s Poor Law

Would you like to research poverty and the lives of the poor in mid-nineteenth century Midlands?

Have you got a few hours to spare each week?

Then why not join the British Association for Local History’s new project to open up the Poor Law Union correspondence held at The National Archives at Kew

As mentioned in a previous article highlighting my work with the National Archives, the British Assiciation for Local History are continuing their efforts to make old, archived documents accessible online to all, but we need help!

From the 1830s parishes were grouped into Poor Law Unions which dealt with claims from people who sought relief in times of need due to unemployment, illness, infirmity etc. The letters the Unions wrote to the Poor Law Commissioners in London tell us about people like:

  • Richard and Mary Sanderford, James and Mary Richards, and Thomas and Hannah Lamb who are given a few meagre shillings when agriculture and the nail trade were so depressed they have no work.
  • Ann Wickwar whose husband has been convicted and transported to Australia. With six of her children, she is removed by Leicester magistrates to the Bromsgrove workhouse. She wants to return to Leicester and thinks that with the help of her three elder children and a small allowance from the guardians, she could keep herself and her family.

This exciting project will involve local groups going through this fascinating correspondence and publicising the results.

  • No experience needed – just lots of enthusiasm!
  • No need to travel to London – work from home!

To find out more about the Bromsgrove Union Group, contacts us or come and meet Paul Carter from the British Association for Local History:

Wednesday 17th August,
Belbroughton Church Hall (2.30 – 4.30 )

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