Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Alaska Treaty

 On 30 March 1867 US Secretary of State William Henry Seward signed a treaty to buy Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million - less than 2 cents an acre. https://localhistories.galexia.agency/a-brief-history-of-alaska/ 

Friday, 26 March 2021


 I wrote a history of the charming village of Botley in Hampshire https://localhistories.galexia.agency/a-brief-history-of-botley-hampshire/

Wednesday, 24 March 2021

Selling your wife (or husband)

 In the 18th century and 19th-century men sometimes sold their wives. (There were also cases where women sold their husbands). This strange custom arose because poor people could not divorce. (Until 1857 it took an act of parliament to dissolve a marriage so divorce was only possible for the rich). However, the wife had to consent to the sale, and often she was sold to her lover. Selling your husband or wife was not actually legal but in the early 19th century it was tolerated, especially in rural communities. However, divorce became easier after 1857 and the police began to prosecute men who sold their wives. The last known case of a man selling his wife in Britain was in Leeds in 1926. He sold her for £10 (a large amount of money at that time). The woman consented to be sold but the man was prosecuted.

Sunday, 21 March 2021

Thomas Cranmer

 On 21 March 1556 the Thomas Cranmer, Protestant Archbishop of Canterbury was burned to death during the reign of the Catholic Queen Mary https://englishhistory.net/tudor/thomas-cranmer-death/?fbclid=IwAR3Gh9MSbCIVFo2SVEPEj4T-jd_Ts2SZu8r3jMHHZvIR2KnSqi16_pt_XEE

Saturday, 20 March 2021

International Women's Day

 The first International Women’s Day was held on 19 March 1911. A ‘Women’s Day’ was organized by the US Socialist Party in 1908. European Socialists copied the idea and in 1910 it was agreed that an International Women's Day would be held next year. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AKWjIWJzT7Q

Thursday, 18 March 2021

Myths About Corsets

 Most of us have grown up with myths about corsets - they were like instruments of torture, they made women faint etc. This clothes historian says none of it is true, corsets were not dangerous or even uncomfortable. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNwTqanp0Aw

Wednesday, 17 March 2021

Saint Patrick

 According to legend Saint Patrick was captured when he was young and made a slave in Ireland. He escaped back to Britain but eventually returned to Ireland to preach. It's probably not true. It's more likely Patrick was a slave trader himself. https://www.irishcentral.com/roots/history/saint-patrick-slave-trader?fbclid=IwAR3x6HLSaykzwliVIjcwqzld4L7rbVMEyag49EUBQsbH7XnV6kVpClaF4yE

Tuesday, 16 March 2021

Caroline Herschel

 The great astronomer Caroline Herschel was born on 16 March1750. In 1828 The Royal Astronomical Society awarded Caroline the gold medal for science. In 1846 she was given the Prussian Gold Medal for science. www.localhistories.org/caroline.html

Monday, 15 March 2021

The Jersey Martyrs

 I found this video about the horrifying about murder of Protestants on the Island of Jersey in the 16th century. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8HjGBpY8_DQ&list=WL&index=2

Shoe the World

 15 March is National Shoe the World Day. Sadly for many people in the world shoes are a luxury. www.localhistories.org/shoes.html

Saturday, 13 March 2021


 I found an interesting video about oubliettes. An oubliette was a kind of dungeon within a dungeon. It was usually a cell at the bottom of another cell. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRXh7tEjM2s

Thursday, 11 March 2021

Tuesday, 9 March 2021


 Happy birthday Barbie. (She made her debut at a toy fair on 9 March 1959). www.localhistories.org/dolls.html 

Monday, 8 March 2021

Saturday, 6 March 2021

Friday, 5 March 2021

Thursday, 4 March 2021


 Chicago was incorporated as a city on 4 March 1837. Happy birthday Chicago. https://localhistories.galexia.agency/a-history-of-chicago/

Tuesday, 2 March 2021


 Alexander Graham Bell, inventor of the telephone was born on 3 March 1847 www.localhistories.org/bell.html

Monday, 1 March 2021

19th Century Food

 Four years ago I made this video about food in the 19th century https://youtu.be/q97BiiNzwNU