HIGHLIGHTS FROM OUR DATABASE
The Highlights page is a changing showcase for individual documents or items on the website that members of our Study Group pick from time to time as having particular merit, interest or importance. Our choices of highlights are informed by user feedback we receive through the contact page of the website as well as by our own detailed knowledge of the site contents.
Users may already be familiar with the many ways of finding documents and other items of interest on the Ewyas Lacy website. Personal names, places and topics can be searched simply by using the ‘Search’ box at the top of each page. You can also find a great many aids for searches or browsing in each of the main groupings on the home page, not forgetting ‘Quick Links’ for some of the major subject areas.
This Highlights page adds to these resources by pointing directly to a few specific landmark items that in our judgement are significant to the history of Ewyas Lacy and the surrounding area, and may therefore also suggest further fruitful avenues for study. The selections are changed periodically to open new windows into our website.
Our current selection of highlights gives two examples of how you can develop your own themes on the website. You can build up themes from your own search terms or by browsing from the three main portals on the Home Page and subsequent links to a great variety of topic headings. Bear in mind that a list of results from a simple text search does not always provide the broader historical context of contemporary documents and that non-searchable document images in our digital archive may contain much greater depth of detail than can be found by the search engine.
For a theme such as the history of a particular property and its occupants:
- Manorial records and surveys can provide references dating back many centuries
- The 1840s Tithe Map shows the location of properties and names of property holders throughout Ewyas Lacy, parish by parish, in a comprehensive inventory.
- Trade Directories & Gazetteers record the principal people and places in each parish from 1851 to the mid 1900s
- An “agent’s pocket book” of c1864 sets out detailed information, with maps and property holders’ names, for many of the Marquis of Abergavenny’s properties.
- Soon after, in 1866, the auction of a handful of fields in 1866 shows that times were hard, as seven out of eleven lots did not reach the reserve price and were unsold on the day.
- A transcript of the 1901 census gives property names together with name, occupation and other personal information about household members.
- In 1920 the then Marquis sold his holdings in Ewyas Lacy, which are detailed and mapped in the estate sale particulars : for this sale we also have the names of purchasers of over 160 properties and the price paid.
- Property descriptions and sales over recent years can be found in our ELSG sale particulars listings, and show the exponential change in property values in the 21st century.
If your theme is the social history of how local people lived their lives over the centuries, this can be traced from various threads, some in written form and others in our audio archive:
- Pre-configured searches by subject area in the website provide a simple path towards topics and records of potential interest.
- Sad reminders of hardship in the 19th century are recorded in the testimony of paupers to the Poor Law tribunal. These can be accessed from an index to Resettlement Orders from 1840-1850. Other insights on this theme can be found in a paper on “Dore Workhouse in Victorian Times” .
- A vivid memoire of the Longtown Eisteddfod has been transcribed from a tape recording of Muriel Watkin’s recollections.
- Reminiscences from former pupils at Newton school can be accessed via the search term “Memories of my School Days” , which give a vivid picture of school life in the mid 20th century, including the arrival of evacuees during World War 2.
- The Audio Archive gives the voices of local people recounting lifetime memories of the local community as an oral history; their contributions can be found categorised by topic in the index page.