‘Deeds not Words’ – Forgotten Birmingham Suffragettes and Suffragists

‘Deeds not Words’ – Forgotten Birmingham Suffragettes and Suffragists

The importance of Birmingham and the West Midlands in the story of women’s struggle for the vote has long been forgotten.

Now West Midlands History have turned a spotlight on the stories of the women who as suffragists devoted their lives to the cause and the suffragettes whose militant acts resulted in imprisonment and, often, force-feeding.

Dr Nicola Gauld highlights the importance of their struggle and discusses more in her important new book ‘Words and Deeds: Birmingham Suffragists and Suffragettes 1832-1918’


River Tame: Hidden history of Birmingham’s industrial river

Hidden away below Spaghetti Junction is the River Tame – the major river of the West Midlands conurbation.

Flowing from Oldbury through the Black Country and into Birmingham, some of the greatest industrial names of the region flourished along its banks. It was here that the blue bricks that typify much of the Black Country were made and munitions’ workers made bombs in the First World War; while today Jaguar, the car manufacurer, is found on a site where Spitfires were built in the Second World War.

Join historian Jenni Dixon as she guides Mike Gibbs of History West Midlands along the mysterious course of the River Tame as it crosses the region.


James Keir (1735-1820)

James Keir (1735-1820) Industrial Pioneer and Lunar Man
Among the ‘Forgotten’ players of the Industrial Revolution in the West Midlands stands James Keir. Keir was a fascinating figure – A true Renaissance man – much of whose life remains undiscovered. Today he is primarily remembered as a chemist and industrialist, but Keir was also a pioneering author, translator, geologist, metallurgist and army captain.
Researcher Kristen Schranz describes how after working at Soho Manufactory with Boulton and Watt, Keir developed the Tipton Chemical Works and the Tividale Colliery.
Read more about this industrial pioneer and innovative thinker at https://www.historywm.com/articles/james-keir-1735-1820-a-renaissance-man-of-the-industrial-revolution

Regency Birmingham – A history in maps of the 18th Century

In these two articles John Townley writes about the insights into the growth of Birmingham in the late 18th Century at a time when the population of the town expanded from about 42,000 in 1779 to more than 52,000 less than a decade later.

​Using these maps he shows how the town absorbed the surrounding fields, new streets were added, and canals were dug.