It has been great to see over the last couple of the months the library start to be utilised by many of our visitors for their own research. We have had family history researchers, recipe researchers, local village history researchers and industrial archaeology researchers to name a few.
The new space has allowed me, as a Skills for the Future Library and Archive trainee to ensure that the potential use of the library for research has been exploited at events. The research area is used to display samples of information that can be found by researchers within the library and archive:
At the ‘Workhouse Experience’ event, items were displayed that had been discovered in and around the workhouse (including pieces of building archaeology, household wares and toys), and placed alongside transcribed documents about the workhouse and the inmates.
At the ‘History Alive’ event we concentrated on material relating to the early beginnings of the workhouse; spinning records, the original Act of Parliament and dietary requirements for the inmates.
For the Garden Show being held on the 30th June 2013, we will display copies of garden catalogues, tool catalogues, books on gardening during the war, education books on gardening that came from local village schools and anything else we feel will be of interest to researchers.
It is great to have the time during these events to help people with their research and share information.
If you, or your organisation, are interested in using any of our resources in your research, or have any queries on family, local, agricultural, object or workhouse history or have your own stories or histories that you wish to share, then please do not hesitate to contact us. You do not have to wait for an event, you can contact us to make an appointment via email at www.museums.norfolk.gov.uk/gressenhall
Helen Bainbridge, Museum Archive and Library Trainee