Happy International Women’s Day! We have an amazing array of records relating to women’s history here at The National Archives and so what better way to celebrate than to showcase some of our records? There are documents which played a huge part in the establishment of women’s’ rights through to our more puzzling and bizarre records on women’s appearance.
Prompted by the recent debate in the media following Hilary Mantel’s comments on the Duchess of Cambridge, I was particularly interested to see how the image of women, not just female royals, has developed over the course of recent history.
A matter of class?
The National Archives holds a prison record on Lady Constance Lytton (catalogue reference: HO 144/1054/187986), one of the many suffragettes imprisoned whilst campaigning for Votes for Women. Continue reading »
The British Board of Film Censors was established 100 years ago, on 1 January 1913, to censor films “which may be considered in any way opposed to the better feelings of the general public”.
Film poster for '£1,000 Reward' (reference HO 45/10551)
Home Office files in The National Archives record the establishment of the British Board of Film Censors and reveal some instances where the government was concerned about the influence of film and its perceived link to an increase in crime.
The film ‘£1,000 Reward’ by Pathé, which wanted to film an escape from Portland Prison, was subject to consideration by the Home Office following a letter from an official at Portland Prison in which it claimed that “such exhibitions may be detrimental to the good Government and control of the Prison.” The letter from the Home Office on the matter also states that: “There is a risk that prisoners’ friends may be encouraged to traffic with officers in order to furnish them with tobacco, even if with no more serious purpose.”
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With an array of different Christmas puddings now available, you probably didn’t have any problem getting hold of one this year. However, 60 years ago, you might have had a problem getting the ‘correct’ Christmas pudding, files in The National Archives reveal.
Making the Empire Christmas Pudding (catalogue reference CO 956/62)
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