Transcription Tuesday 2020: West Midlands Police Records

By Guest, 17 January 2020 - 10:36am

Corinne Brazier of the West Midlands Police Museum explains how you can help transcribe 19th century police records

The records provide a detailed account of West Midlands policemen's careers
The records provide a detailed account of West Midlands' policemen's careers (Credit: Ancestry)

This is one of four projects that we are supporting as part of our fourth annual Transcription Tuesday event on Tuesday 4 February 2020. Click here to learn about the other three projects.

 

The records held by the West Midlands Police Museum offer a fascinating insight into policing and social history all the way back to the 1830s.

With over £125m in recent budget cuts, the force could never justify spending money on digitising and indexing its historic records and without an index, many of them cannot not be searched or utilised fully.

Enter Ancestry: the company's offer to scan vast portions of our historic records in return for sharing some of them for free on the Ancestry World Archives Project was an offer too good to refuse.

The indexing of these records is a vital part of completing the puzzle that will unlock these records to allow us to trace individuals for genealogy enquiries and further our knowledge of policing throughout the 19th century.

The records comprise various sets of personnel records and prisoner mugshots.

The personnel records range from an early index of the first officers to patrol the streets of Birmingham in 1839, to a more comprehensive one page summary used from about 1900 up to the early 1970s, which contains a huge amount of data for each officer: including where they were from, early occupation, marriage details, height, hair and eye colour, posting history, medical history and promotions.

These records allow us to tell the story of policing in Birmingham from its inception, giving us the nationalities of the early officers and showing the social dynamics of the force.

They show what kind of injuries officers suffered on duty and sadly, how often they would die whilst serving - either through injury, illness, old age or simply exhaustion from the demands of the job.

Information about the project and how to get started is available on the World Archives Project.

Note that you will need to download Keying Tool 2.0, the free transcription software, onto your computer.

You will also need to be an Ancestry user or register for a free guest account.

Once you have downloaded the software, you will use it to view the records.

There are three main types: Register, Record and Page 2.

You will need to enter key details on each police officer, including their name, date of birth, and dates of joining and leaving the police.

Get full instructions on transcribing the West Midlands Police records

 

 

 

Get all the latest Transcription Tuesday news and updates with our free email newsletter:

Transcription Tuesday 2020: Stobs Camp prisoner records
previous news Article
Transcription Tuesday 2020: Royal Navy First World War Lives at Sea
next news Article
Transcription Tuesday 2020: Stobs Camp prisoner records
previous news Article
Transcription Tuesday 2020: Royal Navy First World War Lives at Sea
next news Article
We use cookies to improve your experience of our website. Cookies perform functions like recognising you each time you visit and delivering advertising messages that are relevant to you. Read more here