Our Blog

Present Arms!

21 January 2021

Imagine a highly virulent virus, of unknown origin, which was killing thousands of people young and old.  And, the only way to stop it sweeping though communities and save inhabitants was to develop a vaccine and inoculate the population.  The government would no doubt need to establish a vaccination policy and in fact make it compulsory.

Alternative Facts

06 December 2020

"You're saying it's a falsehood and Sean Spicer, our press secretary, gave alternative facts to that" (Kellyanne Conway, 22 Jan 2017). But it isn't just presidential inaugurations which give rise to "Alternative Facts", we may find our own family research produces more than one picture of the story.

Put that light out!

02 November 2020

If you know anything about the Second World War on the home front, you will know about the blackout. You have probably heard the catchphrase "Put that light out!", but what if you didn't?

Deaths at Scutari Hospital

24 October 2020

What became of those ancestors who just disappear from the records? Perhaps they died in a foreign field. Thousands died in the Crimea campaign of 1854-56 the considerable majority from illness rather than action. Could your lost ancestor be one of them?

Schrodinger's Mother-in-law

14 October 2020

What links a thought experiment created to illustrate a concept in quantum physics and the 1939 index? You have possibly heard of Schrodinger's Cat, but what about Schrodinger's Mother-in-Law?

Message from the Chairman

20 August 2020

I have watched the development of the website over many months and marvelled at the vast collection of archival material which we have assembled for the use of the family historians who will visit it. The commitment and ingenuity of many volunteers have combined to deliver a resource which I hope will become essential to thousands of researchers tracing Ancestors hailing from Manchester and further afield.

Family History in the Time of Coronavirus

31 July 2020

Imagine. It is 1995 and the world is facing a coronavirus pandemic. The country is locking down. You will be confined to your home for weeks. How are you going to spend your time? Well, not researching your family history for a start. Record offices and local studies libraries have closed and will remain closed for months.