The premier resource for tracing your British and Irish ancestors
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British Origins Library

Rare vintage photos, maps and publications depicting British life in the 18th and 19th Centuries.   Preview Image Library

Children's Employment Commission Part II
1842 government publication contains evidence on the employment of children, by interviews with the employers, adult workers and children, relating to the work and life style conditions of the children. An amazing and fascinating insight into conditions of work and peoples' lifestyle in 1842 in their own words.   Read more

Coaching Days and Coaching Ways
by W. Outram Tristram with 214 Illustrations. Published 1893. A very humorous and informative insight into travel in bygone times. A great way to know more about how our ancestors of all periods lived.

Domesday Book for Middlesex
A facsimile of the Domesday Book entries for Middlesex, published 1862. Transcriptions of the Latin entries and their English translations are provided. The translation volume also contains indexes to places and to persons mentioned in the original.   Read more

England & Wales Gazetteer Maps
Published 1895, includes maps of all English and Welsh counties, plus plans of major cities.
The county maps, coloured to show the political divisions, show natural features and the main roads, railways and canals.   Read more

Fairholt's Costumes in England
A history of dress from the very early Britons to the end of the 18th century. What differentiates this book is the second volume which is a glossary including pictures. From this you get a sense of how and why the clothes were worn and where the idea and name came from. Brings to life the realities of dress and therefore the culture of our ancestors.

Pictorial Description of Great Britain & Ireland
Robert Sears, Publisher, New York,1846. Written from an American perspective, the book covers the geology, scenery, people, towns, antiquities, industry and commerce, government, banking, fire insurance, utility supply, and much more, and includes hundreds of illustrations.

Something for Everybody
By John Timbs - 1861 Domestic Arts & Customs
Title page with illustration of Brambletye House. To the reader dated June 1861. Contents, New Year's Day, St Distaff's Day, St Blaze's Day, Palm Sundy, Morris Dance, Domestic Arts and Customs, Medieval Furniture, Milkmaids in London etc., This book has as the title describes "Something for Everybody".

The Universal Pocket Companion 1741
A lovely pocket reference book, in the old type style, including a description of England, places in the world, description of London & Westminster, companies in London, prices of the works of bricklayers, masons & carpenters, Archbishops & Bishops, places at Court with salaries.... and so on.

Wonderful London
Over a thousand photographs covering all aspects of London and London life. Dating from the late 19th and early 20th centuries the photographs provide fascinating detail concerning the London of a century ago.