My initial interest in Jomo Kenyatta, first President of Kenya, was inspired by his links with my family during the Second World War. I knew he had spent most of the war years working as a farm labourer at our family business in West Sussex. I remember my grandfather telling me years ago that he had Kenyatta over to lunch on a number of occasions, when they discussed politics, among other things. I don’t expect they always agreed on everything, but my grandfather had obviously found him to be an interesting and intelligent man, and he was intrigued enough to find out what he had to say for himself. In fact, Kenyatta gave him a booklet he had recently written,called ‘My People of Kikuyu’ and he wrote inside the front cover: ‘To AG Linfield. With best wishes, Jomo Kenyatta. 17-4-42’ (Fig.1). Continue reading
I have recently embarked on a major research project into the history of the Worthing Glasshouse Industry. Started by the pioneer growers such as George Beer in the 1870s, who built the first large commercial glasshouses, the industry flourished in the town and became the main glasshouse growing centre in the country. The industry was important to the local economy for over 70 years, until it gradually declined as the expanding town absorbed all the old nurseries in its relentless growth. By the 1960s, the vast majority had closed. I am very lucky that David Abbott, official historian of the West Sussex Growers Association, has joined me in the project and we recently held an exhibition of some of our ‘discoveries’ at Worthing Library (5- 19 March 2011). Continue reading
The Lin(d)field One Name Group would like to contact any descendants of Robert Linfield who emigrated to Twillingate from Marnhull, Dorset in 1793. We have a lot of information about the descendants, but are still seeking clues as to the English origins of the family.
I am trying to contact anyone with connections to this couple who married in 1727 in Bath, Somerset, England. We believe that Robert may have been born in about 1707 in Trull, Somerset, but cannot find where he came from. Any information gratefully received. We can supply fairly complete data on his descendants.
Every family has its ‘black sheep’, the wayward individual who doesn’t quite fit in, the person who has done bad things, who may have brought shame and embarrassment to his or her family. They are fairly rare in reality, on average appearing only once in every three generations. They may be completely ostracised by their families and cast out, or shown a modicum of restrained toleration – but everyone knows who they are.
One such individual, whom I have touched upon previously in an early Longshot article, was Emily Frances Linfield. She caused untold embarrassment to her family, mainly through her habitual drunkenness, and was even accused of murder when her elderly mother died after a fall. This article explores her life in more detail and updates her story in the light of more recent information. Continue reading
Set up by the Royal British Legion, the new website ‘Every Man Remembered‘ has been set up to honour and commemorate every single man and woman who died in the Great War fighting for Britain and the Empire. It is a really fantastic idea, and as a One Name Family History Society, I feel it is essential we should commemorate everyone from the Lin(d)field families who lost their lives. Donations can also be made to the Legion in memory of an individual. Continue reading
With all the First World War centenary commemorations well under way, I wanted to tell everyone about a new website: ‘The Great War – West Sussex‘.
Financed with a lottery grant, this has been a joint project between the West Sussex Library Service and the West Sussex Record Office, who appealed for volunteers to research case studies on various topics of the war or on a particular serviceman or woman. Far more people came forward than expected – 150 rather than the estimated 80 or so – but the end result is a fantastic learning resource that I can thoroughly recommend. Continue reading
Another of the various items we have acquired through Internet trading sites, is a page from The Sketch. This was an illustrated weekly newspaper, mainly covering the aristocracy and high society. It was published from 1893 until 1959 by the same organisation that produced the Illustrated London News – itself another valuable source of articles for local and family history. It carried regular features on royalty and the aristocracy, theatre, cinema and the arts and was always well illustrated with photographs. Continue reading