PCC Will of Anne Slack 1843 PROB 11/ 1977
Researchers and writers use documents from The National Archives a lot. You will find references to these documents in the footnotes of many a scholarly volume, and we even have a guide to Citing documents in The National Archives.
But some of the documents we hold are fakes or forgeries, and sometimes the fact that they are fakes is what makes them interesting.
Census returns are full of useful information for genealogists, local historians and other researchers. But some of the most interesting entries are the ones where the householders supplied more information than was asked for, or made comments of some kind.
In 1911 the suffragettes all over Britain organised a boycott of the census, with varying degrees of success. Many of them refused to fill in the census schedule, or wrote messages of protest on the paper. When this census was released, these comments naturally attracted a great deal of attention, but the suffragettes were not the only people who used the census schedule to make their views known.
One of my colleagues came across this wonderful example of a political protest in 1911, but not from a sufragette. It came from James Casey, marine store dealer, who lived with his wife and four children in three rooms in Battenberg Road, Richmond. He filled in all the information required of him, but added ‘and to hell with John Burns the traitor to the British working man’.
RG 14/3593 Schedule 111