Transatlantic Ties: A Juneteenth voyage to Ghana

By Jo McConville, Project Archivist Please be aware that this post covers topics that may be distressing. The original 18th century documents discussed here also contain archaic racial language and terminology which is now considered unacceptable. "Black Unity Juneteenth Celebration" by dsgetch is licensed under CC BY 2.0 If you’re reading this on Saturday (19th),…

Transatlantic Ties: January 2021 Update – Inaugurations, MPs and Presidents

By Jo McConville, Project Archivist "United States Capitol, Washington, D. C." by Boston Public Library is licensed under CC BY 2.0 The day finally arrives for Joe Biden’s inauguration as 46th president of the United States, following an extraordinary few months of controversy and division since his election victory in early November, culminating in the…

Thanksgiving: A Transatlantic Ties update

By Jo McConville, Transatlantic Ties project archivist. You can read more on the TT project here. For a long time, I didn’t really ‘get’ Thanksgiving. Perhaps not so surprising, given that it’s such a distinctively American holiday which doesn’t register on our British calendars. My main exposure to it came during my 1990s Friends obsession,…

Transatlantic Ties: An Introduction

By Jo McConville, Heritage Project Manager: Transatlantic Ties Followers of this blog and WSRO news will almost certainly be familiar with the story of the Sussex Declaration (if not, click this link to see our previous blog posts on this great record), the rare contemporary copy of the American Declaration of Independence housed at the…

The ‘Sussex Declaration’ of Independence held at West Sussex Record Office

Many of our followers will recall the news last year of the 'Sussex Declaration', an early copy of the US Declaration of Independence, and the only other ceremonial copy of the Declaration known to exist besides the signed 1776 copy now displayed at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. Although the manuscript has been catalogued and stored here at West Sussex Record…

Sussex and the US: Closer than you think

In the final instalment of our American-themed blogs to celebrate Independence Day, we are looking at the many and varied connections between famous faces in America’s history and the county of Sussex. Founded in the 17th and 18th centuries, thirteen British colonies on the east coast of North America declared independence in 1776 and formed the United States of…

Chichester’s Admiral: Sir George Murray and the American War of Independence

Continuing our week of themed blog posts focussing on West Sussex links with America, today’s focus is on Royal Naval Officer (later Vice-Admiral) Sir George Murray, a Chichester local who saw service throughout the American War of Independence, as well as the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. A few days prior to the signing of…

The US Declaration of Independence and West Sussex Record Office

Many of you may have read about the ‘Sussex Declaration’ in the past few months. You may have heard about the record on the radio, you may have even seen it broadcast to millions on morning television! The story behind how this parchment copy of the US Declaration of Independence ended up in Chichester is…