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Genealogy Blog

16 December 2013

£100,000 Funds for Northern Ireland World War I Projects

Grants totalling £100,000 are being awarded to projects to help Northern Ireland communities explore their links to the First World War. The money from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) will support five new heritage projects.

The projects aim to help communities better understand the First World War period and other events that impacted on both local life and the world stage. Among them are projects in Newry and Mourne, Ballymoney and Tandragee.

Source & Full Story

12 December 2013

Historical Texts in Turkey's National Library Sold For Paper Value

More than 140 tons of historical texts were sold to second-hand booksellers for their paper value by Turkey’s National Library. The historical pieces were bought by booksellers and collectors, who then allegedly sold the texts to auctioneers at high prices.

Culture and Tourism Minister Ömer Çelik said they would clamp down on the corruption in the National Library on Dec. 7 via his Twitter account.

Source & Full Story

Haiti Quake Destroyed or Damaged 60 Years of Archives

The huge, deadly earthquake that pulverized Haiti in 2010 also caused destruction or heavy damage to 60 years of public records, the country's director of National Archives said Wednesday.

The nation lacked an inventory, so what exactly was lost is in doubt, but "I can say that there were enormous losses," said Jean-Wilfrid Bertrand at an international gathering of Francophone archives experts being held in Haiti. "More than 60 years of archives are badly stored, damaged or lost," Bertrand said. "After the earthquake, the situation got worse."

Source & Full Story

11 December 2013

US Archives To Showcase Magna Carta in New Gallery

The only original copy of the Magna Carta in the United States is the centerpiece of a new museum gallery at the National Archives, tracing the evolution of rights and freedoms through present day.

On Wednesday, the archives will open its new "Records of Rights" permanent exhibit in an expanded museum space on the National Mall. Philanthropist David Rubenstein donated $13.5 million to fund the project, along with funds from Congress. Rubenstein also is loaning the 1297 copy of Magna Carta to the archives.

Source & Full Story

5 December 2013

The Revolver JRR Tolkien Carried With Him In The Trenches of WWI Is Going On Display For The First Time

During the dark days of the First World War, 2nd Lieutenant JRR Tolkien kept his revolver close to him at all times as he fought to survive the front-line trenches.

Now the precious gun is going on display for the first time, helping Lord of the Rings fans connect with the history that helped shape the author's writing. The Webley MK VI was given to Tolkien who joined the 11th Battalion of the Lancashire Fusiliers in June 1916.

Source & Full Story

2 December 2013

'Sacred World War I Soil' From Flanders Field Brought To London For a New Memorial Garden To Mark 100th Anniversary of Horrific Conflict

Soil from the First World War battlefields of Flanders was today blessed and added to a memorial garden which will mark next year's 100th anniversary of the start of the conflict.

Seventy bags arrived in London yesterday and were taken by gun carriage from HMS Belfast to Wellington Barracks, where the Flanders Field Memorial Garden is being created. On the way the carriage passed national landmarks such as St Paul's Cathedral and Buckingham Palace.

Source & Full Story

20 November 2013

Transcript of Nuremberg Trials Coverage From World War II Donated To US Holocaust Museum

A one-time U.S. Army reporter during World War II donated a never-before-published transcript of radio coverage of the Nuremberg war crimes trials of Nazi leaders to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum on Tuesday — 68 years to the day after he began reporting on the landmark military tribunal.

Harold Burson covered the trials in 1945 and 1946 for the American Forces Network on the radio. He wrote extensive scripts for on-air announcers who were broadcasting to U.S. soldiers in Europe and to the English-speaking population in Germany during the first Nuremberg trial.

Source & Full Story

Biola University, California, USA: Library Archives Mold Free And Open To Students

The library archives are open for use after being closed for nearly two months due to the presence of non-toxic mold. The archives were made available on Nov. 14, said Sue Whitehead, interim co-director of the library.

The situation was initially investigated by Healthy Buildings, whose experts tested the mold and determined that it was not toxic. Healthy Buildings also installed data loggers in the archive room to get hourly readings on the temperature and moisture in the room, said Beverly Cain, assistant director of facilities management.

Source & Full Story

14 November 2013

Rare Depiction of Jacobite Heroine Flora MacDonald For Sale at Bonhams Edinburgh

A portrait of Flora MacDonald, a heroine of the Jacobite risings, who helped Bonnie Prince Charlie escape after the Battle of Culloden is to be sold at Bonhams Scottish pictures sale in Edinburgh on Thursday 5 December.

It is estimated at £7,000-10,000. Following his defeat at Culloden on 16 April 1746, Charles Edward Stuart - Bonnie Prince Charlie - fled the field and went into hiding. Pursued by the army of George II, whose claim to the British throne he had challenged, the Prince took refuge on the Hebridean island of Benbecula, which was under the control of the government.

Source & Full Story

6 November 2013

Rescued From Saddam, Iraqi Jewish Archive Finally On Display

In May 2003, just days after American-led coalition forces ousted Saddam Hussein, a group of US soldiers from Mobile Exploitation Team Alpha were searching the headquarters of Saddam’s fearsome intelligence service for signs of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons. Submerged under four feet of water in the building’s basement, they instead happened upon five centuries’ worth of books and documents relating to Baghdad’s erstwhile Jewish community.

The thousands of waterlogged materials were quickly rescued and placed outside, but immediately began accumulating mold in Iraq’s powerful summer heat and humidity.

Source & Full Story

4 November 2013

National Museum of Australia Acquires Earliest Melbourne Cup Trophy

The 1866 Melbourne Cup won by The Barb is the earliest known Melbourne Cup in its original state. First run in 1861, the Melbourne Cup was a cup in name only, with prizes including a gold watch and cash purse.

The first official trophy cup was awarded in 1865. The 1865 trophy was sold by its owner, who reportedly found it unattractive. It was rebranded and presented as the Flemington Hunt Club Cup. The 1866 trophy is therefore the oldest Melbourne Cup in original condition. The National Museum of Australia acquired the 1866 cup in 2012.

Source & Full Story

31 October 2013

National Archives in Washington To Display Trove of Iraqi Jewish Books; Conflict Over To Whom They Belong

The tattered Torah scroll fragments, Bibles and other religious texts found in a flooded Baghdad basement 10 years ago testify to a once-thriving Jewish population that’s all but disappeared from Iraq.

Recovered from the Iraqi intelligence headquarters and shipped to the United States for years of painstaking conservation was a literary trove of more than 2,700 books and tens of thousands of documents that are being digitized and put online. A sample of that treasure is being displayed for the first time this fall at the National Archives in Washington.

Source & Full Story

28 October 2013

Lee Harvey Oswald’s Wedding Band Goes For $108,000 At Auction

Lee Harvey Oswald’s gold wedding band, which he left in a cup on a dresser the morning he assassinated President John F. Kennedy, sold at auction for $108,000 in Boston on Thursday.

The ring was among nearly 300 items linked to the former president, who was shot on Nov. 22, 1963, that were auctioned by RR Auction, The Associated Press reported. The auction house said Oswald’s ring, which has a tiny hammer and sickle engraved on the inside, was sold to a Texas buyer who wished to remain anonymous.

Source & Full Story

22 October 2013

Rare Copy of First Ever Printed British Newspaper Which Includes Article on Bubonic Plague Death Toll Is Up For Sale

A rare copy of the first ever newspaper printed in Britain is to be auctioned nearly 350 years after it came off the press. The Oxford Gazette was published on November 7, 1665, at a time when London was in the grip of the devastating bubonic plague.

It was the first newspaper in the world to be printed in English.The two-page first edition contained an eclectic mix of news including military and naval engagements, debates in the House of Commons and overseas dispatches.

Source & Full Story

21 October 2013

Mata Hari's Netherlands Birthplace Destroyed In Fire

The house in the Netherlands in which exotic dancer and WWI spy Mata Hari was born has been destroyed in a fire. One person was killed by the fire on Saturday evening as it engulfed several buildings in Leeuwarden, about 140km (87 miles) north of Amsterdam.

Local media said the victim was thought to be a 24-year-old man who had lived in a flat in the buildings. Mata Hari was born Margaretha Geertruida Zelle in August 1876, to a shopkeeper and a Javanese mother.

Source & Full Story

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