Saturday, March 22, 2014

Journal: York Historian Volume 30

York Historian Volume 30 is fresh from the printers!  Bit of a shameless plug, as I have a paper in it, but here's the contents list:

Sylvia Hogarth - A Yorkshire 'bourse de marriage' (as per the cover above)
Sandra Garside-Neville - Trouble at t'mill: the varying fates of the windmills in the Evelyn Collection
Bill Fawcett - The 1948 Plan for York 
Jon Kenny - Investigating the Roman road from Eboracum towards Aldborough, near Hessay and Moor Monkton
Editor - Hugh Murray (1932-2013): A Bibliography
Rosemary Suthill  - Index to York Historian: Volumes 21-30

Copies of York Historian can be obtained from Publications Department, YAYAS, 26 Burtree Avenue, SKELTON, York YO30 1YT

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Thesis: An Analysis of Roman Ceramic Building Material from York and its Immediate Environs

Oh look what I found on the web, to my surprise:

An Analysis of Roman Ceramic Building Material from York and its Immediate Environs
McComish, Jane Mary (2012) An Analysis of Roman Ceramic Building Material from York and its Immediate Environs. MA by research thesis, University of York.

This study comprises the analysis of 8.11 tonnes of Roman tile from York and its immediate hinterland. The tile was recovered from 215 archaeological investigations undertaken by York Archaeological Trust, together with the tile from excavations at Heslington East undertaken by the Department of Archaeology of the University of York. The tile was analysed in terms of the chronological and spatial variations present, the results being examined in relation to three widely debated research themes, namely the nature and speed of Romanization, the role of the Roman army, and the economic relationship of the town to its hinterland. Given that the use of tile was introduced to Britain by the Romans, and that it formed a key element of classical architecture, the speed of its adoption has been used to show that the process of Romanization occurred slowly in the York area, with many of the buildings outside the fortress reflecting state-sponsored building-campaigns, rather than the spontaneous growth of a Romanized town. Tile, in conjunction with Ebor Ware pottery, was produced by the military, primarily to supply its own needs, and the study has shown that the army were by far both the largest producers and consumers of tile in York, with 99 percent of tile stamps being military. Although a civilian tile industry must have existed in York, as a small number of civilian tile stamps are present, this industry clearly failed to develop on any scale, suggesting that there was insufficient demand for tile to support such an industry. The study is accompanied by appendices cataloguing each form of tile, the fabrics and fabric groups present, and the surface markings seen, together with details of the stratigraphic sequences for twenty-one representative sites selected for detailed chronological analysis.

Available for download at:

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Book: Roman Castleford by ...

In the late first century AD an important crossing point of the River Aire was strategically adopted by the Roman army in their campaign against the Brigantiam Celts.  The creation of a fortified site with an attendant settlement, was to establish a Roman presence that endured over 300 years.  As a legacy, Castleford has extraordinary potential for Roman archaeology, and this booklet tell what has been revealed so far.

Roman Castleford by Mitchell Pollington, ISBN 978187045352, £5.00.  Probably available from here, but not currently listed (Feb. 2014).  However, in the column on the left of their screen there's a 'Can't find what you want?' link where you could enquire.
Of course, if the book has managed to get onto this blog in the first place, there's some brick interest, along with some scale armour fragments ...:

Saturday, February 01, 2014

Book: Draining the Cumbrian Landscape by Edward & Stella B Davis

Draining the Cumbrian Landscape by Edward & Stella B Davis:

'During the eighteenth century in what is now Cumbria agriculture was in a depressed state and little draining was being undertaken. What revolutionised land draining was the ‘tile’ manufactured from clay, the very substance which was largely responsible for the problem of waterlogged land. 

Introduced into Cumberland c.1819 by Sir James Graham to drain the Netherby estate, the first clay agricultural drainage-tiles were produced at what became known as Sandysike Brick & Tile Works. Tileries spread throughout Cumberland reaching their peak in the 1850s when about 75 works were producing tiles. A total of 113 tileries and brick & tile-works in Cumberland with nine in Westmorland and possibly eight in Furness & Cartmel were in operation between 1821 and the early 1900s. 

However, as a major industry this was short lived as by the 1920s only nine works remained. This book details the rise and decline of the tile industry in Cumbria and is based on an extensive range of primary, as well as secondary, sources. In a sleeve inside the back cover is a CD containing a 242-page Gazetteer of Sites and Manufacturers, which records details of all located tile-works, with reference to sources, in what is now Cumbria and adjacent counties.

This publication, written as a result of thirteen years work by two local historians, will be of interest to agricultural, industrial and regional historians and also to archaeologists. The Gazetteer of Sites & Manufacturers arranged by parish will prove particularly useful to local historians, and family historians will find the many named tile-workers a valuable source.'  Costs £18.

You can order the publication on line at Books Cumbria. Or see the order form below (copies at CWAAS website):

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Book: Rediscovering Bradford: archaeology in the engine room of Manchester

Thought I had already covered this, but a search of my blog seems to say I haven't!  May be I just photocopied parts of it.  But anyway:

Here's the blurb:

Historically, Bradford was a rural township that lay beyond the eastern fringe of Manchester.  Settlement probably comprised little more than a few cottages scattered around Bradford Old Hall, a moated manor house that was built in the mid 14th century century.  This rich natural resource was the principal reason for the 19th century transformation of Brradford into a key industrial area, known locally as the 'engine room' for Manchester.  This booklet rediscovers the history of Braford, and summarises the findings from archaeological excavations of two important industrial sites: Bradford Colliery; and the famours ironworks of Richard Johnson & Nephew.

Of chief interest for brick fans is the information about the Bradford Colliery Brickworks, and here's a sample:

This is number 4 in the Greater Manchester's Past Revealed series.  The booklet costs £5.00 and the ISBN is 9781907686047.  A search on the Web brought up no details as to how to get hold of the publication, but it was published by Oxford Archaeology North.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Course: Medieval tile making workshop

Medieval tile making workshop: Sunday 11 May 2014

9.30am to 5pm, at Weald & Downland Open Air Museum, West Sussex, UK

A practical day with the opportunity to design your own tiles, or use pre-made patterns, with information on historical aspects of the craft. Each participant can choose four tiles to be fired and sent to them after the course.

The tutor is Karen Slade who has been demonstrating tile making since 1996 and enjoys learning something new about it every year. In her role as Kate Tiler, she demonstrates medieval tile making all around the country, using replica tools and equipment and traditional methods. She is interested in the interpretation and exploration of the hidden meanings of medieval tile designs and images, an understanding of which helps to place them in a historical context.

Fee: £110 per person, to include tuition, tea and coffee.  The museum cafĂ© will be open or you can bring your own packed lunch.

Booking: Click for the booking form

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Castles and Coprolites: Micrograph of the Month: Medieval floors

An interesting post from another blog .... Castles and Coprolites: Micrograph of the Month: Medieval floors: This is the second floor themed micrograph post, you can see examples of Neolithic floors in a post from last year here.