Tracing Your Insolvent Ancestors (Paperback)
A Guide for Family Historians
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Debtors’ prisons are infamous but very little has been written about the records of those confined within them in London or elsewhere in the country. Even less has been written about the trials of those who were often incarcerated following misfortune or mismanagement rather than criminal intent. That is why Paul Blake’s handbook will be so useful for researchers who want to find out about forebears who may have been caught up in the insolvency system.
In a series of information-filled chapters he covers the historical background to the handling of debt and debtors, and bankruptcy and bankrupts. In addition he describes the courts and procedures faced by both creditors and debtors, and the prisons where so many debtors were confined.
Throughout the book details are given of the records that researchers can turn to in order to explore the subject for themselves. Many are held at The National Archives, but others are to be found at local record offices around the country.
Paul Blake’s book will be appreciated by local, social and family historians, as well as those with an interest in debtor crime and punishment, and bankrupts in general.
As featured byFamily Tree, October 2019
As referenced in author article 'The Gazette'WDYTYA? Magazine, August 2019
A practical and expert guide to researching insolvent debtor and bankrupt ancestors, explaining the court system, the punishments available and the arrangements for the imprisonment of debtors and their release.Cumbria FHS
"Whether you are looking at this historical system in terms of local, social or family history this is a book which will help you with your research project."East Yorkshire Family History Society
Experienced genealogist Paul Blake provides here a practical guide to researching insolvents, debtors and bankrupt ancestors and it is packed with details.Bristol & Avon FHS
As featured on The Lost Cousins NewsletterLost Cousins
While also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.38), "Tracing Your Insolvent Ancestors: A Guide for Family Historians" is a unique, impressively informative, and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, and academic library Genealogy instructional reference and resource collections.Midwest Book Review
Read the full review here
Paul Blake’s book will be appreciated by local, social and family historians, as well as those with an interest in debtor crime and punishment, and bankrupts in general.Rosie Amber, Blogger
Read the full review here
The author suggests that the complexity of legislation and the fragmented organisation and disparate nature of surviving documents, may account for the relatively limited use of insolvency records by family historians. However, this wonderfully compiled volume may just open up a path to new research opportunities.Alde Valley Suffolk Family History Group
I am fascinated by the subkect of genealogy, and found this new book from Pen and Sword miost entertaining and informative. We found ancestors in our search who went from being quite wealthy to having nothing, and would have made much use of Paul Blake’s excellent book had it been available to us at the time we were doing our own research.Books Monthly