Thursday, May 3, 2012

The London Gazette

A Treasure Trove of Historical Information

Britain’s oldest continuously-published newspaper has recorded significant political events, the everyday working of government, and, to some extent, the lives of ordinary everyday people since the plague of 1665 drove King Charles II from London. 
 The London Gazette is available online for free and the majority is key word searchable.

By the early eighteenth Century the Admiralty and War Office published despatches in the Gazette and submitted details of the appointments and promotions of their officers, a process known as “being gazetted”.  
In 1712 an “Act to Relieve Insolvent Debtors” required publication of insolvency announcements.
The Gazette continued to grow, the railway building boom of 1845, legislation on Patents and Company Law in the 1850s and 1860s, and from 1870 notice of civil service recruitment and examinations contributed to the publication. Civil service notices continued through the first half of the twentieth century and included bodies such as the post office.
Below I found a reference to our Cassingham relative:


In 1899 a Naturalization Act resulted in the publication of lists of those granted British citizenship and in 1925 the Trustee Act picked up pre-existing practice by specifying certain legal privileges for executors giving notice of deceased’s estates in the Gazette. Notices of this type provide family historians with a rich trail of information.

For more information about the London Gazette visit us at, a special search facility is available for beginners at or use advanced search
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