In April 1962, Miss Joan Sinar was appointed as the first County Archivist for Derbyshire. In the 55 years since this landmark was reached, whilst much has changed at the Record Office the basic principle of preserving Derbyshire’s archival heritage and providing access to it has remained constant. However, 1962 may not have been the true beginning of Derbyshire’s archive service.
On Monday 14 August, join us to find out more about the history of the Record Office and record keeping in Derbyshire. There will also be a display of original archives illustrating the development of the Derbyshire’s archival heritage, and a unique opportunity for a behind the scenes tour.
Monday 14th August 2017
Cost: £10 (including light refreshments)
Booking essential. Please register via the link to the right, or call 01629 538347
Would you like to help look after Derbyshire’s rich history? Through our Adopt a Piece of History scheme you can adopt any item from our collections, in the knowledge that your contribution will directly support our work to keep Derbyshire’s history safe for the future.
If you’re looking for a truly unique gift, why not let someone else adopt a piece of history? Whether they love sport, art, gardening or trains, there is something in our collections they would be proud to help look after too. And with different options and prices, this could be just the surprise you’ve been looking for.
Adopt a piece of history for £20
Choose an item from the list of favourites on our blog and get a personalised e-certificate. Our favourites include suggestions for keen ramblers, bakers, dancers, engineers and many more.
Adopt a unique piece of history for £35
Choose your own favourite from our collections to make a truly personal gift. You might want to adopt the parish register that shows the marriage of two of your ancestors, a map of the area they grew up in or that document that made all the hours of searching worthwhile.
Become a part of Derbyshire’s history for £100
To celebrate a special occasion or commemorate a loved one, choose your own favourite from our collections and tell us why it’s important to you. The recipient’s name and adoption details will be entered into our official Register of Adopters and be kept as part of the archive for ever. Your adoption will also be visible on our online catalogue and the recipient will receive a special invitation to our annual Open Day to visit their adoptee.
You can see all the details about the scheme and fill in an order form on our Adopt a Piece of History page. And do take a look at the other pages on our Support Us tab, which give details about our volunteering opportunities.
Thursday 5th May saw the start of our latest ‘What’s in the Wall?’ exhibitions. Running (or should I say pedalling?) until the 30th July, ‘Have bike, will travel’ is a comprehensive collection of items from our Local Studies and Archives, ranging from the late 19th century to the present day. Many of the photographs are courtesy of Picture the Past
Bicycle related photos, maps, magazines, drawings and diaries are all there, along with a large dose of nostalgia, from the early days of the penny farthing, the bicycle as an essential form of transport, to the cycling proficiency test and 80s BMXing!
This exhibition will coincide with the Aviva Women’s Tour which has a whole stage in Derbyshire on Friday 17th June (it will go up Bank Road in Matlock, definitely worth watching!) It will also coincide with the Eroica Britannia – a 3 day festival held in Bakewell from Friday 17th June – Sunday 19th June, which ends on the Sunday with over 4,000 riders taking part in a vintage bike ride.
Come and take a journey with us through the history of Derbyshire cycling. The display is in our Reception area and we are based on New Street, Matlock – parallel with Bank Road (if you don’t know the road, come and take a look at the steep gradient the women will have to climb on the Derbyshire stage of the Women’s Tour!)
Directions are here and we are open Monday to Friday 9.30am – 5.00pm and Saturdays 9.30am – 1pm. We have cycle parking as well as car parking. Our other forthcoming events can be found here
Not many doors left now…
Derbyshire Archaeological Journal, Vol. 1 (1879) – available in Book Room 1
Published in January 1879, the first volume of the Derbyshire Archaeological Journal included
- an article on the ‘Inscription on the Font at Chelmorton’, by C. S. Greaves, Q.C., M.A.;
- two articles by J. Charles Cox on ‘The Registers, and Churchwardens’ and Constables’ Accounts of the Parish of Repton’ and ‘The “Mortuary Chapels” of Lichfield Cathedral’;
- ‘An Account of the Ring of Bells now in the Tower of the Church of All Saints, Derby’ – now better known the Cathedral;
- ‘A List of the “Alehouses, Innes, and Tavernes” in Derbyshire in the Year 1557’, by W. H. Hart, F.S.A.
- an article by Rev. J. Magens Mello, M.A., F.G.S. on ‘Palaeolithic Man at Creswell’.
The first page of the first article to appear in the journal
First page of the Derbyshire Archaelogical Journal, Jan 1879
The full run of “DAJ” in Book Room 1
The most recent volume (number 134) now available at the Record Office was published in 2014 and includes articles such as ‘Prehistoric Rock Art, Dobb Edge, Baslow’, by John Barnatt; ‘Archaeological Investigations at Bakewell Churchyard and Hassop Road Roundabout, Derbyshire’, by Alvaro Mora-Ottomano and ‘A Hardwick Scandal of the early seventeenth century: William Cavendish, Lady Arbella Stuart, and the Case of Margaret Chatterton’, by Timothy Raylor.
The Society itself was ‘founded in 1878 as an archaeological and natural history society to foster and encourage interest in the past life and natural history of the county. Though natural history has been taken over by other societies, the Society has widened its archaeological and historical work in response to new needs’ – extracted from Derbyshire Archaeological Journal Vol 134 (2014).
The Society’s extensive Reference Library is stored at Derby Central Library, and a large collection is preserved here at the Record Office (ref: D369). The collection includes the Society’s Council and committee minutes from 1874; accounts 1927-1981; correspondence, 1885-1958; archaeological reports and plans 1940s-1960s; publications, 1950s -1970s, and miscellaneous title deeds and a large number and variety of papers, prints, maps and photographs.
More information about the Society is available on their website – www.derbyshireas.org.uk
DRO visitors will have seen our latest vitrine wall exhibition, A Sense of Place, focusing on the Local Studies Library’s Local Authors collection. Inspired by a booklet published by former local studies librarian Ruth Gordon, we highlight Derbyshire-connected writers from Erasmus Darwin to Richmal Crompton to Stephen Booth, and the varied depictions in print of the Derbyshire landscape (both rural and industrial) and historic Derbyshire events.
Our county also provided inspiration for settings in such novels as Pride and Prejudice and Adam Bede, and the backdrop to a short story featuring Sherlock Holmes. Did you know that cricket fan and Marylebone Cricket Club player Sir Arthur Conan Doyle may have amalgamated the names of wicket-keeper Mordecai Sherwin and Derbyshire bowler Frank Shacklock for his famous character, and that Sherlock’s brother’s name was perhaps inspired by another Derbyshire bowler, William Mycroft? All three played in the match between Derbyshire and the MCC, reported on in the Derby Mercury, 17 June 1885.
A Sense of Place runs until Saturday 22nd November.