Spen Valley

Spen Valley

Spen Valley Past & Present by Frank Peel

I feel particularly privileged in being asked to write this short review of Spen Valley Past & Present by Frank Peel; I have a relationship to the author through marriage, his daughter Eleanor married Josiah a brother of my Gt. Grandfather Ezra Bruce.

From a topographical point of view, until this volume, there had been little published for the specific area of the Spen valley, Sheard's Batley, Craddock's Birstall and Smith's Morley all delve into the history of those particular areas with only passing references to the valley of the Spen. It wasn't until the publication of this volume by Frank Peel in 1893 that aspects of the area known as the Spen valley were for posterity recorded in print.

This volume suffers a little less from the problem, which unfortunately blights many topographical volumes of the Victorian age; a distinct lack of an adequate index and in extreme cases a complete lack of an index altogether. However, like many of his CD publications, Colin Hinson has produced this CD to be fully machine-searchable, therefore the lack of a comprehensive index in the original volume is rendered somewhat academic as literally any word within the volume can be located with ease. The inclusion of this extremely important search facility demonstrates once again why Colin Hinson is at the forefront of this crusade to provide to the general public, topographical and historical works of rarity.

Many thanks to Colin Hinson of Yorkshire CD Books for sending me a copy of this CD to review...the eBook CD can be obtained from Yorkshire CD Books.

Reviewed by Steven F. Bruce, Yorkshire Family History