Writer, editor and researcher – mostly about history and work

Family history articles

Here are some articles I wrote for family history magazines on trade union and company records, electoral records and the difficulties of putting modern values on historical prices.

Trade union records (Family History Detective)

People have always joined forces to fight for their rights. The records left by trade unions can tell us much about how they lived their lives

Your Family Tree
January 2006, issue 33



 A fair day’s pay?

How did our ancestors’ wages compare with ours? Mark Crail opens up pay packets from the past

Ancestors (The National Archives)
March 2010, issue 93

Read the article (PDF)



Capital and labour

Londoners have always occupied a unique place at the heart of the trade union movement. Mark Crail uses union records to research labouring Londoners

Ancestors (The National Archives)
London special 2010, issue 92

Read the article (PDF)


Election special

As we prepare to head to the polls, delve into the records to find out who your ancestors voted for, follow their movements and learn about their changing social status

Your Family Tree
May 2010, issue 90

Read the article (PDF)


Company records (Family History Detective)

Could a pile of old share certificates make you the heir to a fortune? Maybe not, but company records can still enrich your family’s history

Your Family Tree
Christmas 2005, issue 32