Learning to see Le Prince

This week on the Secret Library we are delighted to welcome back guest author Irfan Shah, who has previously written for us on Leeds’ contribution to the development of photography. In this article, roughly coinciding with the 130th anniversary of the disappearance of Louis Le Prince (September 16 1890), Irfan shares some exciting news about…

People of Leeds #11: Superintendent Henry Baker and his Fire Books

This week Helen Skilbeck looks at a collection of scrapbooks compiled by Superintendent Henry Baker of Leeds Corporation Fire Brigade, covering the period 1870 – 1896. This article is #11 in our People of Leeds series – short biographies of lesser-known contributors to Leeds’ past.  Deep within the stacks in Leeds Central Library are a collection…

People of Leeds #10: Godfrey Wood, Confectioner

A recent blog post by librarian Helen Skilbeck looked at Godfrey Wood’s Victorian Catering Ledger which shows the events his catering business provided food and services for.  This follow-up post, also by Helen, looks in more detail at Godfrey Wood himself. This article is #10 in our People of Leeds series – short biographies of…

Hathorn, Davey and Company, Limited

This week on the Secret Library we have an article from guest writer Dr Robert Vernon, who explores the Hunslet engineering company, Hathorn, Davey and Company, Limited. Robert will be releasing his new book, A history of Hathorn, Davey and Company, Limited (1872 to 1936)  which will be published later in 2020.  Hathorn, Davey and…

The Glory of Goad Maps

In the blog this week, Librarian Helen Skilbeck looks at some beautiful but underused maps in our collection – Goad maps. This piece forms part of our series of articles exploring resources relevant to family history research.  In the Local and Family History Library there are hundreds of maps – maps of Leeds, maps of…

West Leeds Girls’ High School Jubilee Magazine

This week’s Secret Library Heritage Blog article has been written by Local and Family History’s Josh Flint and will be the first in a new series. This new series will be on treasures from the Local and Family History collection about Armley. This first Armley treasure is the 50th Jubilee of the West Leeds Girls;…

Local History Quiz #9: Leeds Blue Plaques

This week’s local history quiz focuses on the Leeds Civic Trust Blue Plaques of Leeds and is brought to you by librarian Louise Birch.  Most of the answers can be found somewhere on this site or on our photographic archive Leodis, and you can see the full-set of answers at the bottom of the page… Q1. What…

LGBT+ Leeds: A Brief History in Photographs

A heritage project called West Yorkshire Queer Stories recently spent two years interviewing LGBT+ people across the region in order to find out more about local queer history. The result is a new website packed with information and anecdotes reaching back to the 1950s, at wyqs.co.uk. Project worker Ross Horsley has picked out some of…