Lies, Damned Lies and Family History- A One-hour Lecture on 16 March

We have all heard family tales about illustrious ancestors or simply tales of our forebears. Some of these tales are to hide dark secrets, but mostly they are just stories of the family's past. In this talk,  I will look at some of the stories I have been told about my ancestors and the ways I have researched them. Some turned out to be lies and damned lies and some were true, or at least partially true. Some stories turned out to be sad and other hilarious, but all of them were worth researching!

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Book of the Month - My Ancestors were Coal Miners

By David Tonks

Fifty years ago Britain was reliant on coal for its energy needs. Across the country, over a million Brits worked as miners, risking injury and often their lives to extract this “black gold” from the earth. These robust people were admired by many for their courage and physical durability, and though feared by some for their political strength, they helped shape the national identity for generations.  

This book by David Tonks, who was brought up in an East Durham colliery village, will help you discover the world in which your mining ancestors lived—a world that, perhaps, is more complex and fascinating that you might imagine. In addition to detailing the social history of the miners, the book establishes which records are available and how to access them.

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