From the Archives Blog

From the Archives allows us in the Humanist Library and Archives to share some of our wonderful items and our learning with you!

It also includes entries from the former A2R (Alternatives to Religion) blog, a collaborative project between Conway Hall and Bishopsgate Institute which sparked exploration of some of the ways people have tried to make sense of the world and live together ethically without the need for faith in a God or gods. The key themes linking this broad movement are Freethought, Ethics, Humanism, Rationalism and Secularism. Material for these entries came from the British Humanist Association, The National Secular Society and Conway Hall Ethical Society. Posts were written by archivists, Nicky Hilton and Carl Harrison.

Click here to download the Victorian Blogging Special Edition of the Ethical Record. To celebrate all the work that has gone into our National Lottery Heritage Funded project, Victorian Blogging, we have produced a special edition of our Ethical Record journal, which can be read here. This issue brings together many…

16 August 2019 marks 200 years since the attack on over 60,000 peaceful pro-democracy protesters that has become known as the Peterloo Massacre. This event, a landmark in British political history, took place in the area of Manchester known today as St Peter’s Square. Against a backdrop of growing unrest…

This blog comes from our volunteer, Cami Garcia, who selected Rev. James Cranbrook’s pamphlet ‘Human Depravity’ as a highlight of our nineteenth-century pamphlet collection. Little biographical information about Rev. Cranbrook is available, but his title of Reverend, combined with the content of this pamphlet and his decision to publish his…

While cataloguing Ralph Waldo Emerson’s 10-volume complete works (Riverside edition) I discovered a handwritten letter stuck with sellotape to the front of vol.7 Conduct of Life, a collection of miscellaneous essays. The letter, dated Concord June 1907 (or possibly 1909), is from Emerson’s son, Edward Waldo Emerson (1844-1930), a physician,…

View The Emerson Bust

Fri, 3rd May, 2019

This blog comes from our volunteer, Selina Packard, who selected the theme of atheism as a highlight of our nineteenth-century pamphlet collection. In this blog, Selina discusses different attitudes to atheism in the nineteenth century and today, with reference to a few pamphlets now available to read online. These pamphlets…

This blog comes from our volunteer, Cami Garcia, who selected Austin Holyoake’s neo-Malthusian pamphlet ‘Large or small families? On which side lies the balance of comfort?’ as a highlight of our nineteenth-century pamphlet collection. Austin Holyoake, brother of secularist and co-operator George Jacob Holyoake, was a radical printer and publisher…

As part of our Heritage Lottery Funded pamphlet digitisation project, we have had our collection of nineteenth-century pamphlets conserved in order for them to be robust enough for the digitisation process and to ensure their long-term preservation. This work has been completed by the Postal Museum conservation studio, who have…

Today marks 70 years since the United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Paris on 10th December 1948.  Human rights are the basic rights and freedoms that belong to every person in the world, regardless of where you are from, what you believe or how you live…

Through July and August we ran a series of three creative writing workshops led by creative writing practitioner Michelle Crowther, as part of the Heritage Lottery funded Victorian Blogging project. Six pamphlets were chosen to provide inspiration for participants to write their own poems or short stories and some of the participants have kindly…

Through July and August we ran a series of three creative writing workshops led by creative writing practitioner Michelle Crowther, as part of the Heritage Lottery funded Victorian Blogging project. Six pamphlets were chosen to provide inspiration for participants to write their own poems or short stories and some of the participants have kindly…

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