‘Saints and sinners’ flavour for History Day 2017

Wednesday 27 September 2017

Senate House Library and the Institute of Historical Research Library will give history buffs a thrilling Halloween experience at their fifth History Day on 31 October.

This unique event for undergraduate and postgraduate students, early-career researchers and anyone interested in history, brings together libraries, archives and history organisations from London and beyond. Items relevant to Halloween will be highlighted.

It will culminate in an open fair at Senate House that is an essential one-stop shop for all those interested in historical research.

More than 30 organisations are planning to join this year’s celebration of history, which was first conceived in 2014. They range from the Science Museum and the Royal College of Physicians to the Black Cultural Archives, the Geological Society and the German Historical Institute.  

The day will also include three panel discussions on topics selected to support the research process. The first session will introduce the principles and practices of digital history, while the second will explore the various aspects of discovery in libraries and archives. The final is led by Professor Sarah Churchwell, the School of Advanced Study’s public engagement chair, who will explore public history and how practitioners are communicating history to new audiences.

The event, which is free and open to all, is an opportunity for attendees to question the librarians and archivists responsible for the myriad of rich research collections. As a nod to History Day being held on 31 October, the event blog will highlight collections found in participating libraries and archives that can be described as magical or scary.

‘This will be the biggest history day so far with new organisations from outside London joining libraries and archives who are returning for the fifth time’, explains Jordan Landes, SHL’s research librarian in history.

Anne Welsh, lecturer in library and information studies at University College London, says ‘I’m pleased to be chairing a new panel this year that will give people insights into how they can explore collections using the latest online tools and make the most of catalogues and archival hand lists.'

Panel sessions include:

  • Digital History, 10am, Jane Winters (SAS), Jonathan Blaney (IHR), Judith Siefring (Oxford)
  • Discovery in Libraries and Archives, 11:30am, Anne Welsh (UCL), Christian Algar (British Library), Geoff Browell (KCL), Christopher Hilton (Britten-Pears Foundation), Claudia Mendias (SOAS)
  • Public History, 2:30pm, Sarah Churchwell (SAS), Catherine Fletcher (Swansea),Justin Bengry (Goldsmiths)

History Day 2017 takes place on 31 October in Senate House, Malet Street, London, W1CE 7HU, 10am–4pm. For all enquiries, please contact ihr.library@sas.ac.uk, or 020 7862 8771 for press enquiries. Follow Twitter #histday17.


Notes for editor

  1. The Institute of Historical Research was founded in 1921 and is one of nine institutes that comprise the University of London’s School of Advanced Study. The Institute’s mission is to promote the study of history and an appreciation of the importance of the past among academics and the general public. It offers a wide range of services both onsite and remotely which promote and facilitate excellence in historical research, teaching and scholarship in the UK, by means of its library, events programmes, fellowships, training and publications. It is a leading centre for the creation of digital resources for historians, and promotes the study of London history through its Centre for Metropolitan History and the Victoria County History. Learn more about the Institute of Historical Research at www.history.ac.uk, Twitter: ihr_history, Facebook: InstituteofHistoricalResearch
  2. Senate House Library (SHL) is one of the world’s most significant collections in the arts, humanities and social sciences. With its partner libraries of the institutes of the School of Advanced Study, it provides services to readers from the School of Advanced Study, the colleges of the federal University of London, and from regional, national and international research communities. All are welcome to join the Library. The Library and its collections have been continuously developed since the 1870s. It now holds more than two million printed books, thousands of printed and electronic journals, and the highest proportion of historic collections of any university library in the UK. Learn more about Senate House Library at http://senatehouselibrary.ac.uk/, Twitter: senatehouselib, Facebook: SenateHouseLibrary, Instagram: senatehouselib
  3. The School of Advanced Study (SAS), University of London, is the UK’s national centre for the promotion and support of research in the humanities. SAS and its member institutes offer unparalleled academic opportunities, facilities and stimulation across a wide range of subject areas for the benefit of the national and international scholarly community. In 2015-16, SAS: welcomed 786 research fellows and associates; held 2,007 research dissemination events; received 24.4 million visits to its digital research resources and platforms; and received 194,145 visits to its specialist libraries and collections. The School also leads the UK’s only nationwide festival of the humanities: Being Human. Find out more at http://www.sas.ac.uk or on Twitter at @SASNews.
  4. The University of London is a federal University and is one of the oldest, largest and most diverse universities in the UK. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University is recognised globally as a world leader in Higher Education. Its members are 18 self-governing institutions of outstanding reputation, together with a number of prestigious central academic bodies and activities. Learn more about the University of London at http://www.london.ac.uk