Bromsgrove Messenger newspaper now online

Bromsgrove Messenger

The Bromsgrove branch of the Birmingham & Midlands Society for Genealogy & Heraldry have digitised their local paper the Bromsgrove Messenger and uploaded the images onto their website. The time period covered is 1860 – 1937. The newspaper hasn’t been indexed, so must be browsed page by page.

What a valuable resource for those with family from this area and all due to the labours of one man Martin Stephens who is a member of the Bromsgrove branch of the BMSHG.

Definitely a Genealogy Saint !

The Gentleman’s Magazine

The Gentleman's Magazine

No I haven’t been browsing the top shelf of my local newsagents (!), I have just finished reading a good article in the January Who Do You Think You Are? magazine about this publication which started life in 1731 and ceased publication in 1922. The idea of the magazine was to produce a monthly digest of news, commentary and, of great interest to genealogists, announcements of births, marriages and deaths, appointments and promotion amongst the clergy and armed forces.

The magazine was aimed at the upper classes and that is who features amongst the bmd’s and appointments so don’t expect to find your ag lab or small farmer much amongst the pages unless they committed some frightful crime in which case they may be given considerable attention!

I have used the Gentleman’s Magazine with regard to various of my ancestral families and had some good results.

The magazine is available at several places on the internet, not all of them seem to have complete runs so a surname search of each might be a good idea. Be aware that these magazines will have been indexed using OCRclip_image002[4] and that isn’t always 100% reliable. The magazine has had indexes published over the years which are more reliable and they can be found online.

Wikipedia offers a good overview of the magazine’s history and is well worth reading before you embark on searching the publication.

Those with subscriptions or free 14 day trials at Ancestry can find magazine excerpts 1731 – 1868 in their databases. The Bodleian Library at Oxford offers a number of historic journals including The Gentleman’s Magazine online.

Google Books has a good selection and some of the indexes, offers 618 results on a search for Gentleman’s magazine, I see that some entries on the front page of results directs you to Google Books, but there are other entries from alternative sources.

The Hathi Trust, which I had never heard of before, has all the volumes 1736 – 1849 and the indexes, they are scanned and online. This seemed to be the best source. I think I shall have to return to the Hathi Trust website and spend some time seeing what is there as it looks as if it has great possibilities as a genealogical resource.’s_Magazine’s+magazine

Scottish Broadsheets Online


Scottish BroadsheetsGreat background material at this website for those with Scottish ancestors. The website states……..

In the centuries before there were newspapers and 24-hour news channels, the general public had to rely on street literature to find out what was going on. The most popular form of this for nearly 300 years was ‘broadsides’ – the tabloids of their day. Sometimes pinned up on walls in houses and ale-houses, these single sheets carried public notices, news, speeches and songs that could be read (or sung) aloud.

The National Library of Scotland’s online collection of nearly 1,800 broadsides lets you see for yourself what ‘the word on the street’ was in Scotland between 1650 and 1910. Crime, politics, romance, emigration, humour, tragedy, royalty and superstitions – all these and more are here.

Each broadside comes with a detailed commentary and most also have a full transcription of the text, plus a downloadable PDF facsimile. You can search by keyword, browse by title or browse by subject.

Take a look, and discover what fascinated our ancestors!