Welcome, fellow genealogists! My blog will teach you about U.S. land records and United Kingdom research. My family has roots in Niagara County, New York; Norfolk, England; and northeast Germany.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Wisdom Wednesday: Pub Research

When I mention ‘publican’ and you think of St. Matthew in the Bible, you may not have spent enough time in British pubs. There the owner of the license or the keeper is called a publican.

If these beloved British institutions are part of your family story, there are many, many places you can turn to online to learn about the history of public houses. One is the ever-present Wikipedia…I never ban it for my students because it gives them an overview and a bibliography: www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pub
Now try these more specific sites:

www.sfowler.force9.co.uk/page_12.htm - a comprehensive page with links to other resources on this website by Simon Fowler. The page has not been updated recently and some of the external links are broken. Nevertheless, he wrote a book in 2009, Researching Brewery and Publican Ancestors (ISBN: 1860061745 / 1-86006-174-5) (Try www.abebooks.com for a good price used.)
I also recommend this site despite the issues I raised because Fowler was an archivist at the Public Record Office for twenty years. After receiving a PhD, he edited the former Family History Monthly, before returning to the National Archives from 2004 -2010 to edit their Ancestors Magazine, now not published either. He is an expert on pubs, breweries, workhouses and the role charities played at the time of WWI. Fowler is a long established writer on family and local history. Check his other publications out on www.amazon.co. From his websites…

www.pubs.com/history.htm - lengthy, comprehensive article. Across the top, you may want to click on the ‘Pub Heritage” tab and choose from its dropdown menu for further information about signs, etiquette or games.

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