Wednesday, 17 August 2011

National Archives to digitise criminal records

The National Archives at Kew is to digitise 3 million English and Welsh criminal and court records, in a new partnership with Brightsolid. From the announcement:

The National Archives' crime, courts and convicts collection is to be transcribed, digitised and published online by brightsolid, following an open tender process.

The collection
Comprising bound volumes and loose papers dating from 1782 onwards, this vast collection includes records from the Home Office, Prison Commission, Metropolitan Police, Central Criminal Court and the Admiralty.

The records will be searchable by name, alias, date of birth, place, offence and sentence. Content such as judges' reports, prison registers, transfer papers and gaolers' reports will also be included.

The project is expected to take a year, with the records available from December 2012. The full announcement is available at I believe a similar project is currently underway through FindmyPast Ireland just now also, so, ummm - Scotland? We had a few baddies also, it would be nice to complete the set!

In the meantime, a useful starting point for criminal activity in Scotland is the National Records of Scotland catalogue at, or local newspapers such as those on the British Library 19th Century Newspapers collection.


1 comment:

Caroline Gurney said...

These records in the National Archives are a fantastic and underused source. I recently obtained copies of a petition against a wrongful conviction, and the judge's report on the case, dating from 1829.