The Centre for Metropolitan History (CMH), established by the Institute in 1988, is one of the world’s leading centres for the study of the history of London and other metropolises. It specialises in innovative research projects, covering a wide range of periods, themes and problems in metropolitan history, publishing the results and data online and in print. The Centre runs a seminar, and organises workshops and conferences on many different topics in metropolitan and urban history. Staff at the Centre supervise more than a dozen PhD students and are involved in the Institute’s MA programme.
Centre for Metropolitan History
London and the First World War conference (20-21 March 2015)
Registration is now open for this major conference, organised by IWM (Imperial War Museums) in partnership with the CMH, which will explore the ways in which London and its inhabitants were affected by, and involved with the 1914-18 conflict. Plenary speakers are: Adrian Gregory (Pembroke College, Oxford) and Jerry White (Birkbeck, University of London). Panel sessions include: 'Daily life and institutions', 'Enemy aliens', 'Communications and transport', 'Empire view', 'Dissent', 'Air war', and 'Leisure'. For the full programme and booking information, see www.history.ac.uk/london-ww1.
Metropolitan History Seminar
The Metropolitan History Seminar is held on alternate Wednesdays at 5.30 pm in Room 203, 2nd floor, Institute of Historical Research. The seminar is free of charge and open to all. On 21 January Angela McShane (Royal College of Art) will give a paper entitled 'A view from the streets of early modern London; mapping political geographies with illustrated broadside ballads'. The speaker on 4 February will be Professor Roey Sweet (Leicester), on 'Charles Roach Smith and the Illustrations of Roman London (1859)'. The full programme for the spring term is now available at www.history.ac.uk/events/seminars/134.
Previous Metropolitan History seminars are available as podcasts on the IHR Website
People, Property and Charity: The Clothworkers’ Company 1500-1688 (http://www.clothworkersproperty.org/)
Arising from a CMH project, funded by The Clothworkers’ Company, with research carried out by Dr Annaleigh Margey, this website was officially launched on 10 October. It provides the first detailed history of the benefactors, property acquisitions and other bequests of The Clothworkers’ Company in the City of London during the late medieval and early modern periods. Focusing specifically on the properties that came to the company through the bequests of several benefactors, it traces the company’s management of these properties and associated charities. The site provides biographies of the most significant property benefactors, as well as listings of benefactors who bequeathed silver, plate, and monies for charity and entertainment purposes, and histories of the properties granted to the Company.
Records of London's Livery Companies Online (ROLLCO) Project
The ROLLCO database has see two recent updates, which have included freedom and apprenticeship records from the Bowyers', Girdlers', Musicians', Salters', and Tallow Chandlers' Companies, and brings the total number of individuals contained in the database to over 350,000. The database can be searched at londonroll.org. The new records include a number of notable people. To read more about them and the updates, see the the ROLLCO blogs here.
The next ROLLCO update will feature the membership records of the Founders' Company.
Medieval Merchants and Money conference podcasts
Seventeen papers from our highly successful conference held last November in celebration of the work of Professor Jim Bolton (QMUL) are now online as free podcasts. We are very grateful to the speakers who have given permission to make their papers available.
Locating London's Past wins BSECS Prize
We are delighted that Locating London's Past has won the 2014 British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (BSECS) Prize for Digital Resources. This prestigious prize, sponsored by Adam Matthew Digital, is awarded annually to the best resource supporting eighteenth-century studies. Locating London's Past was funded by a grant from the JISC e-content programme 2011, and is a partnership between the CMH, the University of Hertfordshire and the University of Sheffield. Visit the website at: http://www.locatinglondon.org
A number of our publications can still be purchased online from the University of London's bookstore. Bestsellers include: The Religious Houses of London and Middlesex; Guilds, Society & Economy in London 1450-1800 and London in the 1690s: A Social Atlas. Also available are IHR Conference Series volumes: London and Beyond: Essays in Honour of Derek Keene and A History of the French in London: Liberty, Equality, Opportunity
Mobilising London's Housing Histories Conference Podcasts
Papers from the 'Mobilising London's Housing Histories: The Provision of Homes since 1850' conference, held on 27-28 June, are now available as podcasts on History SPOT
Life in the Suburbs Project
Datasets compiled by the ESRC-funded 'Life in the Suburbs: health, domesticity and status in early modern London' project are now available from the UK Data Archive: Study No 7244: Life in the Suburbs: Health, Domesticity and Status in Early Modern London, 1523-1720
Going Underground Conference Podcasts
The majority of papers given at the recent 'Going Underground: Travel Beneath the Metropolis 1863-2013' conference, marking the 150th Anniversary of the London Underground, are now available as podcasts on History SPOT
Book: London and Beyond: Essays in Honour of Derek Keene (ed. Matthew Davies and James A. Galloway)
The third title in the IHR's new conference series, London and Beyond arose from the CMH's 20th Anniversary conference in 2008, at which Derek Keene was guest of honour. Derek was the founding director of the CMH, from 2001 Leverhulme Professor of Comparative Metropolitan History (also based at the Centre) and, before his retirement in 2008, acting director of the IHR. The papers in this festschrift are written by internationally renowned and long-standing colleagues, postgraduate students, or researchers who began their careers under Derek’s guidance. Chapters range from the effect of flooding around the Thames in the middle ages to railways in early 20th-century Paris and London. Buy
Book: Cities into Battlefields (ed. Stefan Goebel and Derek Keene)
Arising from the Centre's 2004 'Metropolitan catastrophes' conference on cities' role in warfare, Ashgate have just published Cities into Battlefields: Metropolitan Scenarios, Experiences and Commemorations of Total War. The volume explores the cultural imprint of military conflict on metropolises world wide in the era of the First and Second World Wars and examines how the emergence of 'total' warfare blurred the boundaries between home and front. With contributions from Susan Grayzel, Peter Stansky, Patrice Higonnet, Eyal Ginio, Maureen Healey, Tim Cole, Antony Beevor, Lisa Yoneyama, Julie Higashi and Jay Winter, it is currently available at the reduced price of £58.50 (normally £65) from the Ashgate website.
Online mapping resource: Locating London's Past
The Locating London's Past website is now available at: www.locatinglondon.org. The website enables users to map information from a vast array of sources, including trial accounts from the Old Bailey, hearth tax, plague deaths and population data and even archaeological records, on to John Rocque’s 1746 map of London, now fully referenced to modern geographical coordinates. This new resource is the result of a collaborative project, funded by JISC, involving the CMH, the Universities of Sheffield and Hertfordshire, and Museum of London Archaeology (see CMH project page for details).
'The Last of the Jobbers'
‘Big Bang’ in 1986 signalled the end of the historic jobbing system of the London Stock Exchange. Jobbers were market-makers who acted as intermediaries between stockbrokers on the floor of the exchange. Few written records are left of their activities. In 1990 the CMH undertook a series of interviews - predominantly with former jobbers but augmented by those from the point of view of brokers and financial journalists - which now form a rare resource for the history of this distinctive part of the financial life of the City.
The tapes and transcripts of the 42 interviews were originally deposited at the British Library Sound Archive (ref no. C463) for permanent archiving but they are now also available online via the University of London School of Advanced Study’s e-repository, SAS-Space. To access the collection visit http://www.history.ac.uk/projects/jobbing.
CMH working papers volume: Tides and Floods
The five papers in Tides and floods: new research on London and the tidal Thames from the middle ages to the twentieth century (ed. James A. Galloway; CMH Working papers series no. 4) arise from a conference held in October 2009, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council as part of the London and the tidal Thames 1250-1550 research project. Written by archaeologists, historians and historical geographers, they present up-to-date work on the flood threat from the later middle ages to the 20th century, focusing upon the changing political, institutional and economic response to this environmental challenge. Also included is a preliminary report on the medieval tidal mills recently uncovered at Greenwich and Northfleet and an overview of the multi-faceted work of the Thames Discovery Programme. 80pp (illus); price £5 + £2 postage. Order a copy from the IHR Bookshop.
Want to investigate markets and fairs? Take a look at our Gazetteer of Markets and Fairs in England and Wales to 1516 - the first systematic national survey of the establishment and operation of markets and fairs from c.900. It contains entries for 2,400 places and lists details for more than 2,600 markets and nearly 3,000 fairs.
The Centre's register of research in progress on the history of London has just been updated with information on theses completed in 2009, along with some thirty new topics currently being studied. We would like the register to be as comprehensive as possible, so if you are actively researching an aspect of London history and you wish to be added to the list, please email the Centre providing details of your research and indicating whether you are willing for your email address to be included in the entry.
London and Urban news and events
Archives for London seminar series: Celebrating 800 years - Magna Carta and London: ancient liberties and free customs
Thursday 5 February 2015, 6 pm-8.30 pm| London Metropolitan Archives (Huntley Room), 40 Northampton Road, London EC1R 0HB
Director of LMA, Geoff Pick, will be discussing the origins of Magna Carta in 1215, the part Loondon played in its creation and its enduring legacy over the last 800 years. Advance booking is essential. Please contact e: Jeff.Gerhardt@cityoflondon.gov.uk t: 020 7332 3879. Free to AfL members, non-members £5 payable on the door.
The City of London Corporation owns one of the few copies of the Magna Carta in existence today. It is currently on display in the new City of London Heritage Gallery.
The Historical Association lectures and events October 2014-June 2015
New Publication: London's Sailortown, 1600-1800: A Social History of Shadwell and Ratcliff, an early-modern London riverside suburb
by Derek Morris and Ken Cozens
Published December 2014 by The East London History Society; ISBN 978-0-9564779-2-7
The first book to describe this unique area of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century London. Features the rich and the poor, the churches and chapels, the East India Company, Hudson's Bay Company, brewers, coopers, mariners, sailmakers, ship builders, ship chandlers. It also includes extensive indexes to names, places and subjects. Available at £12.60 (plus p&p UK £3.50; Europe £8.35; USA £13.15; Australia £13.90) per copy from Philip Mernick, East London History Society, 42 Campbell Road, London E3 4DT (e: firstname.lastname@example.org; www.eastlondonhistory.org.uk).
Historic Hospital Admissions Records Project (HHARP)
This project provides online access to nearly 120,000 individual admission records between 1852 and 1914 for three London children's hospitals: Great Ormond Street Hospital, the Evelina Hospital and the Alexandra Hospital for Children with Hip Disease, as well as the recently added Royal Glasgow Children's Hospital. Website