The Old Scrapbook is an archive of clips, articles, photographs, and postcards about pub history in 1950s England.  Each page delivers fascinating questions and reveals a time just before the world of real ale came under attack from corporate mergers and acquisitions.  This is a world where old traditions were slowly changing, and a post-war world of new technologies was starting to emerge.  The challenge for the reader is to unravel the stories which lie behind each of the scrapbook pages.  To do this we need to consider how we look at such historical sources.

History is often seen by many people as a dry subject, but this book seeks to water the imagination and deliver a sense of intrigue and fascination.  How exactly is it that we interpret a black and white image of Mr and Mrs Miller in The Harringay Arms?  What can old postcards suggest about the purpose of the collector who put the scrapbook together?  Why did this collector create this scrapbook and is there any way we can identify who he or she was?

The strength of all historical enquiry is the questions we ask.  Sometimes we need to allow our creative imagination to realise questions that are not necessarily immediately obvious.  In this book, a pub history mystery, the reader is not just a passive observer but has the opportunity to discover their own solutions to the puzzles and riddles contained in this archive.  Uncovering the past has never been so much fun.


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