Podcast Episode 17: The Mold Riots of 1869

The town of Mold in northeast Wales has its own fascinating history dating back to the 11th century reign of William Rufus, but became infamous for its riots in the summer of 1869. Friction between Welsh coal miners and a particularly abusive English mine manager would result in military interference would leave several dead bodies […]

Podcast Episode 16: The Andover Workhouse Scandal

England in the early 19th century was rife with bad harvests, disease, and poverty.  Parliament developed the concept of workhouses to assist the poor, by providing them with housing and meaningful work to do.  This plan met with varying levels of success, but was mostly disastrous.  Worst of all was the Andover Workhouse in […]

Podcast Episode 15: The Suez Canal

The Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean and Red Seas through Egypt and thus provides a quicker shipping route from west to east, was inaugurated in an elaborate, weeks-long ceremony in November of 1869. It was promoted not only as an engineering wonder, but as a means by which permanent international peace and harmony would […]

Podcast Episode 14: Prison Hulks

Imagine the most pestilent, disease-ridden, rat-infested prison in 19th century Great Britain.  Now drop those conditions into a harbor and you have a prison hulk.  Only used for about a century, these floating dens of misery were responsible for countless prisoner deaths.

Podcast Episode 13: The Crystal Palace Exhibition

Opened on May 1, 1851, by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, the Great Exhibition was the first of the World’s Fair exhibitions of culture and industry. Albert, the Prince Consort, was a major force behind the exhibition, which contained some 100,000 objects, by nearly 14,000 contributors. Britain occupied half the display space inside with […]

Behind the Scenes at The Queen is Not Amused

Many of my readers have asked about my brother, who co-hosts my podcast, The Queen is Not Amused. So that you can get to know more about him and how we work together, I’ve asked him to write a blog post to answer the many questions you’ve had about the behind-the-scenes activities on the podcast. […]

Podcast Episode 12: The Crimean War

The causes of the Crimean War (1853-1856) were complicated, as they usually are.  During the years leading up to the war, France, Russia and Britain were all competing for influence in the Middle East, particularly with Turkey.  In addition, Russia was angry with Turkey over the maltreatment of Orthodox Christians in the Ottoman Empire. […]

Podcast Episode 11: Sidney & Elizabeth Herbert

In the 1850’s Sidney & Elizabeth Herbert were the political power couple of their time.  Sidney was the Secretary of War during the Crimean War, and Elizabeth was his ardent supporter.  Together, they brought forward a young nurse named Florence Nightingale to rescue the Crimean debacle, and the course of nursing was changed forever. […]

Podcast Episode 10: The Exeter Theatre Royal Fire

 

Perhaps the most disastrous theatre fire in Britain’s history occurred in 1887 when Exeter’s Theatre Royal—built to replace another theatre that had burned down just two years earlier—burnt down during an evening performance.  Around 200 people were killed and about 100 children were orphaned. Many of the victims were from the city’s poorer […]

Podcast Episode 9: When Albert Met Victoria

Albert and Victoria are renowned as one of the greatest royal love matches in history.  But was it really love at first sight?  And was their relationship—despite the nine children the couple produced—always one of great harmony and joy?  This podcast examines the 21-year marriage of the queen and her prince consort.

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