• Audio contentA podcast about confessions from the Star Chamber, one of the highest Tudor law courts.

    Tudor trials: Confessions from the Star Chamber

    Medieval records specialist Euan Roger gives us a taste of the kinds of disputes dealt with by the Star Chamber, one of the highest Tudor courts. The tens of thousands of Star Chamber records kept at The National Archives reveal…

  • Audio contentFlorence Maybrick 1889 (catalogue reference COPY 1/397)

    Did she kill him? Addiction, adultery and arsenic in Victorian Britain

    Florence Chandler was in her early 20s when she married much older James Maybrick, a Liverpool cotton broker, in 1881. Eight years later, tensions seethed. James was addicted to arsenic. Both were unfaithful. When James died suddenly, Florence was arrested…

  • Audio contentLucy Worsley

    Writer of the month: A very British murder

    A Very British Murder is Lucy Worsley’s account of a national obsession – a tale of dark deeds and guilty pleasures. Lucy Worsley is Chief Curator at Historic Royal Palaces, the independent charity which opens up The Tower of London,…

  • Audio contentjohn-reginald-christie-ho-291-228

    John Reginald Christie: a study in sources, The National Archives and beyond

    This talk examines and evaluates the sources for the study of the life and crimes of a notorious serial killer, including records held in The National Archives. It will also be useful for anyone interested in similar felons and for…

  • Audio contentExcursion Train ABC, 1874, cat. ref. COPY 1/26(373)

    Researching Mr Briggs’ Hat: an account of Britain’s first railway murder

    The 1864 murder of Thomas Briggs in his first-class railway carriage is investigated through documents in The National Archives, The US National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), newspapers and other resources. The overwhelming reaction to this event tells us about…

  • Audio contentMEPO3-61(2)-Murder-of-Francis-Kent,-aged-4,-by-Constance-Emilie-Kent-1860

    Constance Emily Kent: nightdresses, breast flannels and child murder

    In the summer of 1860, in a well-to-do country house in sleepy Road Hill, Wiltshire, a little boy was snatched from his nursemaid’s bedroom while she was sleeping, and brutally murdered. The resulting investigation threw open the private domestic life…

  • Audio contentcopy1-29-214-gravediggers-at-the-grave-of-john-mitchell-ireland-1875

    Burial clubs – the unfriendly societies

    Friendly Societies were popular in the 19th Century, and were regulated by law.  Audrey Collins reveals how, surprisingly, burial clubs, which offered a form of life insurance, didn’t always fall into this category. And they provided many incentives to commit…

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