Blog

Black and white photograph of Boris Karloff (left) and James Whale (right) on the set of 1931's Frankenstein. Boris is in full costume as Frankenstein, while Whale is talking to him holding a paintbrush.

Six times sci-fi got a Black Country twist

Mummies, monsters and mayhem abound in this week’s blog! It may surprise you to learn that there are numerous links between classic science fiction and Black Country history! BCLM Researcher Nadia Awal explores six of these fascinating connections, featuring Black Country talent from James Whale to Jane Webb.

The resurrection of Henry Box Brown in Philadelphia, illustration. By Samuel Rowse, 1850.

Five Black Lives in the Black Country

In this week’s blog, BCLM Researcher Simon Briercliffe uncovers the hidden stories of 5 Black lives in the history of the Black Country, going as far back as the 1700s, and discusses the challenges historians face in finding out more about Black lives in the past. From eighteenth-century entrepreneur George Africanus to George Cosens, Britain’s first Black pastor who became minister in Cradley Heath in 1837, Simon uncovers the contributions these incredible individuals made to Black Country history.

“Don’t Pay!” The 1913 Wolverhampton Rent Strike

In 1913 Wolverhampton residents had had enough of poor housing conditions and high rents set by profiteering landlords. With help from reformers they formed the “Tenants Defence League” and went on strike. Resarcher Simon Briercliffe explores this fraught story.

Desi Pubs in the Black Country

As part of South Asian heritage month, in this week’s blog we explore the history of Desi Pubs and their important place in the Black Country’s social story.

Epidemic – Diseases that struck the Black Country

From cholera to diphtheria, epidemics are a tragic feature throughout Black Country history. In our latest blog researcher Nadia Awal explores how these deadly diseases affected local towns, and how health innovations & vaccines helped us to overcome them.