Category: World War 2

The siege of Sidney street, Mile end E1 and publicans

I have been researching Sidney street in Mile end today. I received a couple of rather excellent photographs of the 1911 siege of Sidney street when some Latvian anarchists were held siege for seven hours. It is a brilliant way of researching an area, having a story to tell.

What I also like to add to the story is something about the families of the time, in my case the licensees of the Sidney Arms, a beer house at 131 Sidney street; and also the Rising Sun at 131 Sidney street. Both of these buildings were probably demolished in world war two from incendary devices, bombs, doodlebugs etc. In fact they had both stopped trading by this time, and no pubs existed in Sidney street, but this is incidental. I looked at the area on google maps a moment ago, and nearly the entire street has now been rebuilt with modern architecture.

More of interest to me was the licensee Phillip Goldapple who was listed in the 1911 census at the Rising Sun. He was only there for another five years before moving on to the Fountain in Jamaica street; and  it was not until you start researching a particular surname do you find the story of the family for at least the next fifty years in the East end licensing trade. I am almost certainly missing many of the other family members who also had pubs, but the Knave of Clubs , in Bethnal green road, was in the family from at least 1934 to 1964, probably longer.

That’s it really. And there’s lots more detail on the site/s. Another interest I discovered was whilst researching some of the incendiary devices (bombs) dropped on London and this will be another story to tell. There is lots of useful detail online and available to view at London museums and the London Metropolitan archive.

London 1832 & slavery & London Museum

I just remembered something I wanted to share with people, the reason that i am adding the 1832 London street directory.

I visited the London Museum in Docklands a short while back. It was an absolutely amazing day out, and apart from the cost of travel and a few coffees, it was a free day. The Museum charges for nothing; well maybe it does.

I visited three presentations on the day, the Crossrail history – that’s the new Elizabeth train line. I had actually seen most of this on Channel 4 TV programmes. Another exhibition on World War 2 in the blitz, which included a rather excellent, and free, talk by one of the staff / volunteers. And lastly, a brilliant presentation on slavery around the world, and in particular related to the fact that London commerce and all of its wealth probably exists because of the slave trade.

These different presentations were on separate floors in the museum. It is an impressive place, well done.

My research links to all of these periods, as my pub history site is strong up until about 1944 when most of the World War 2 blitz had taken place. And adding a new era in 1832 when street names were often the same, and through renaming over the next century you can start to place some of the early street names .

AND, most importantly, 1832 was two years before slavery was abolished in the UK, per se. It starts to bring this year into perspective. I am proud to be doing this.