1610 Map of the Moon (PHA HMC 241/9 f.17)

Chosen by Alison McCann, former member of staff Wednesday 20 July sees the 47th anniversary of the first manned mission to land on the moon. However, West Sussex Record Office has connections to lunar exploration centuries before Neil Armstrong took his famous steps, with a map drawn by a British astronomer in the seventeenth century.…

Manuscript music book of John Walter, Chichester Cathedral, 17th century (Cap/VI/1/1)

  Chosen by Anthony Cane, Chancellor of Chichester Cathedral The Archive of the Cathedral and Diocese of Chichester, dating back over 1200 years, is a rich and varied collection. The action of the Dean and Chapter of Chichester in depositing its archives in the Diocesan Record Office followed the establishment of that Office by the…

Concession map of Sena Sugar Estates in Portuguese East Africa, c1920 (Acc 15353)

Chosen by Rhodri Lewis, former member of staff In 1890, a young British man named John ‘Pitt’ Hornung decided to try his luck at founding a sugar cane plantation on the banks of the Zambesi in Portuguese East Africa. Battling setbacks such as flood, drought and plagues of locusts, Pitt succeeded where others had failed…

The Earliest Known Written Rules of Cricket, 1727 (Goodwood Mss 1884)

Chosen by James Peill, Curator at Goodwood House This thin sheet of heavily-folded paper is probably the single most important document in the Goodwood archive. It is the earliest known written rules of cricket in existence. They were drawn up for matches between the 2nd Duke of Richmond’s XII (instead of the ususal XI) and Mr…

Shippam’s filling room, c.1954 (Shippams 4/9/2)

Chosen by Ellen Butler (nee Reed), former Shippam's employee Shippam’s is perhaps West Sussex’s most famous business. Established in 1751 as provision merchants, by the 1850s the company was known internationally for its sausages and cured meats, all produced in-house. Advances in technology saw the company move into the preserved goods market at the end…

Vote of thanks to Lord Kitchener and others, 1898 (Acc 17902)

Chosen by Lady Kenya Tatton-Brown, depositor Field Marshal Horatio Herbert Kitchener, 1st Earl Kitchener was born on this day in 1850. In 1896 an expedition to the Sudan was announced to combat the Mahdist uprising and my great uncle, Lord Kitchener, was appointed leader. The Nation had been traumatised by the rise of the Mahdi…

Bognor chemist’s prescription book, 1874-1876 (AM944/1)

   Chosen by The Sussex Family History Group This chemist’s prescription book from Bognor was bought by the Record Office using a grant from the Sussex Family History Group in 2015. It records a patient index and ingredients for prescriptions, and not only provides a unique look into the ailments and cures available in the…

780 AD ‘Oslac’ Charter granting land south of Chichester (Cap/I/17)

 Chosen by Caroline Adams, former member of staff This charter grants land somewhere south of Chichester – we’re not sure of its precise location. The grant dates from 780 and is from Oslac, leader or King (styled ‘Dux’ in the charter) of the South Saxons at the time, to the church of St Paul the…