History Matters

Thoughts, opinions and commentary on all things historical.

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Sheppard’s Warning

A thief who had been dead for more than a century caused a moral panic in the theatres of Victorian London. 

Meeting an Urgent Need

The First World War threw widows and their brothers-in-law together, but their marriages were considered incestuous. 

A Radical Pocket Book

A miniature Emancipation Proclamation helped to recruit Black soldiers during the Civil War.

Roosevelt’s Southern Connection

Was the US president ‘dealing with the devil’ in his relationships with segregationist politicians or was his ‘the art of the possible’?

Stakhanovite Shopping

Even the retail sector became part of the second Five Year Plan imposed on the Soviet Union by Stalin.  

All By Myself

Solitude was treated with suspicion in the Middle Ages. For most people it has only been a possibility in recent times.

The Politics of Pancakes

In England, Shrove Tuesday has not just symbolised feasting, fasting and family, but riot and rebellion, too.