Spreading the word

It’s been a while since the blog has been up and running but being honest, I have not had the time to spend on it that I would have liked. A change in circumstances now means I do have some time over the summer but I have been busy with other things.

I have now decided to set up a website and facebook page and to start promoting my wares, as it were! All I need to do know is to wait for the enquiries to come in. Why not have a look here. By all means give me any constructive feedback.

In the process it made me think about how our ancestors would have promoted themselves in the past.

ironmongers

(Photo – Knees Ironmongers and Manufacturers in 1911. Photo courtesy of The Trowbridge Museum, The Shires, Court Street, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, BA14 8AT)

Originally traders and craftsmen would have had a very local market…mainly passers by and neighbours so shopfronts would have been very important. Later on in the industrial revolution there would have been more competition and some trades or manufacturers would have been further removed from their target audience. It’s then that we see more use of trade directories.

Leicester University has a great collection of digitised directories here. However, it is a bit tricky to navigate and find what you are looking for. Here is an image of a Kelly’s directory for Kent in 1913.

Kent directory

Obviously Ancestry and FindMyPast have some directories online too. Another rich source is the local County Record Office and I have found there are generally some editions on eBay too!

How much information they offer you that might be useful is variable but a little piece of additional information might help knock down that brick wall or distinguish one possible ancestor from another.

So, like many before me I have put my message out there and will await the business coming in.

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