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"Wakefield, its History and People", by J.W. Walker, O.B.E., F.S.A. (1934): This book is a detailed history of Wakefield, particularly from the "people" perspective as can be seen from the index of people (see below). There are a total of around 600 pages plus a large number of illustrations and photographs. The book is the Author's "Magnum Opus" and contains pedigrees for Blacker, Bradford, Bunny, Clarke, Gaskell, Haselden, Maude, Milnes, Norton, Peck, Savile, and Wingfield.
The following are available here on line to help you ascertain the contents of the book:
A review of the Book and CD by Dr. Keith Cowlard:
J. W. Walker: Wakefield : Its History and People :
I first encountered Walker ’s book on Wakefield , when working for a PhD. Like many similar historical books on individual towns written by one of its illustrious sons, ‘History and People’ had been privately printed in a limited run in the 1930s and was, even in the 1970s, out of print and hard to find.
The book covers the history of Wakefield and its environs from prehistoric times to the 19 th century in considerable detail and, though obviously of use to anyone with connections to this area of Yorkshire, it also ranges widely over broader national history – with information on such items as the manorial system, landholding and the courts together with more specific entries like the Battle of Wakefield during the Wars of the Roses, the Pilgrimage of Grace and even Robin Hood and the Pinder of Wakefield (one Robert (Robin) Hood and his wife Matilda (Marion)of Wakefield lay claim to the characters).
This CDRom edition from Colin Hinson is a delight that captures the essence of the intensely researched and cogently written 600+ page book through its high quality output in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) format. Unlike my first encounter with Walker , this CDRom text can be searched quickly and easily, and also the Contents and Illustrations lists are all ‘active linked’, enabling instant movement to any sections or illustrations of interest.
Genealogists will love the 2,000+ names in a text which gives copious specific information on individuals from local sources, and the inclusion of many pedigree family charts (not for nothing does the title include ‘Its People’!). There are 100’s of illustrations (photos, maps and drawings) that can easily be copied into paint or other programs using Acrobat’s ‘snapshot’ feature for printing.
The book is accompanied by a series of Yorkshire maps from Colin– a modern topographical map and maps of the historic Wapentakes and Parishes of the county.
In all, a truly delightful CDRom version of a text that will excite the interest of a wide selection of people and interests.
Dr. Keith A Cowlard
University of Greenwich
Monday 24 October 2005
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