Blog20 Feb 2013
We’ve just launched our latest groundbreaking collection: over half a million historical records of criminals and their victims.
Today marks the culmination of our two-year project to scan and transcribe original records from The National Archives. We’ve made the records available online for the first time, and findmypast.co.uk is the only place you can view these fascinating documents.
The Crime, Prisons & Punishment records will be crucial to your research as they contain information about your ancestors that isn’t available in other records. They really give you a sense of what kind of person your ancestor was and you could even find a photo of them!
We’re launching our collection with records for the period 1817-1931. We’ll add new records in the coming months to bring the total to more than 2.5 million records for the period 1770-1934.
On the right is a record from the collection – click on the image for a larger version.
The record tells the story of charwoman Charlotte Smith, also known as Elizabeth Smith. Charlotte was convicted of being a habitual drunkard in 1903 and sentenced to one month of hard labour.
As well as two photos, the record also provides a detailed physical description: Charlotte was 5ft 5 inches tall with a stout build, fresh complexion, oval face, dark brown hair and blue eyes. She had a slightly pug nose and scars over left eyebrow, right cheek, right side of neck, left side of lower lip and palm of left hand.
It’s time to find how many criminal ancestors are in your family tree…