Documenting our Past
Your Life in Documents
When each of us is born our births are entered into a birth register. You may also be listed in a baptism record if you were christened. When we marry it is entered into a marriage register. When we die a death certificate is produced and when we are buried or cremated our name may be entered into a Burial Record.
Every 10 years the government asks us to fill in a form about who lives in our house - all the forms from all the households in Britain make up a Census.
Where you live will make up part of a Map of your local area which is always changing.
Your telephone number is probably listed in the phonebook. In the 19th Century, before telephones were in common use, trade directories had details of the names and jobs of people living in each street.
You or your school may have been in the local newspaper.
Archives and Local Studies libraries may have many photographs of local places and people. Photographs of your street, school or family may one day end up there.
Archives and Local Studies libraries don’t just collect general information about the local area; they collect the written history of the people who live there, including you!