01935 429609
Somerset & Dorset
Family History Society


Putting Somerset on the early photographic map

Somerset’s first professional photographer was someone about whom relatively little is known, even amongst photographic historians He was Thomas Sharp (1806-1896), who was born in London, but who lived much of his early life in North Devon This blog post records our efforts to have Sharp recognised as the photographer responsible for a portrait which until now has been credited to Roger Fenton, perhaps the best known early photographer Photograph: Major-General Charles Ashe Windham -...

Somerset Photographers 1839-1939

On 31 August 1844, an advertisement in the Warwick and Warwickshire Advertiser announced that, during the following week at the Bowling Green, Warwick “Master Augustus Gyngell, only eight years of age, the child with the iron nerve, will make his daring and astonishing flight across the Green, from an immense altitude, surrounded with fireworks, as the Spirit Ariel, travelling at the rate of 200 miles an hour” We’ve not found a report which might have verified the height or the speed of...

Family History in Focus – hands on!

Yesterday we had the second of our Family History in Focus events when we were able to be really 'hands-on' and try to apply the criteria for dating and identifying images that we had learned in the first session on 6 September, augmented with more good advice from our two speakers - Mike Bolton and Robin Ansell To enable everyone attending to get the full benefit of their expertise, we had limited the number of participants to 14 and had a full complement on the day Mike started the event...

Member and Guest Blogs Welcome

We welcome guest and member blog posts on any topic with a family history connection and invite you to send your contributions, which should include photo/photos, to the editor Barbara Elsmore