Autumn 2018

Gloucestershire Heritage Hub

A very special occasion!

Earlier this year we were delighted to announce that a document in our collections had been accepted onto UNESCO’s International Memory of the World register- the documentary heritage equivalent of becoming a World Heritage Site. A ceremony marking this and other recent inscriptions was held in London on 19 September.  Archives Development Manager Kate Maisey attended on behalf of Gloucestershire Archives along with Clive Andrews, chair of the Friends of Gloucestershire Archives.

Matthew Lodge, Minister and Ambassador of Gt. Britain and Northern Ireland

to UNESCO with Kate Maisey and Clive Andrews

Our “award- winning” document is an African slave song dating from the height of the Transatlantic slave trade. The song was chanted by enslaved people working in the sugar fields of Barbados and was written down by anti-slave trade campaigner Granville Sharp in the later 18th century.  Sharp’s papers descended through his niece to the Lloyd- Baker family of Hardwicke Court and are now preserved amongst our collections. The slave song was nominated by Barbadian music expert Roger Gibbs who saw a digital image of the song on our website.  

Slave song - Gloucestershire Archive (ref D3949/13/3/27) 

The Memory of the World register currently includes a total of 427 documents and collections coming from all continents and recorded on materials ranging from stone to celluloid, parchment to sound recordings. Other recent additions to the register which were celebrated alongside the slave song included the papers of Sir Isaac Newton, the gospels of Tsar Ivan Alexander and key archival sources relating to Shakespeare.  Starry company indeed!

And/or you could link to some info about it on our website. This includes links to 2 recordings of the song.


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