Skip to main content


Showing posts from September, 2013

Famous Names in St Pancras and Islington Cemetery

Following on from last week's introduction to the vast St Pancras and Islington Cemetery, in today's post I explore some of the well-known people who have been buried here since its opening as Britain's first public cemetery in 1854. Mathilde Blind (1841-1896) was born Mathilde Cohen in Germany but sought refuge in London after her stepfather, Karl Blind was involved in the Baden insurrection of 1848. In England she grew up around European refugees and revolutionaries, including Giuseppe Mazinni. Her brother, Ferdinand, committed suicide after failing to assassinate Otto von Bismark. Her political upbringing manifested itself in her poems, and she frequently tackled the subject of social injustice, including her attack on the Highland Clearances, 'The Heather on Fire'(1886). This monument to Blind (see below) was erected by the industrialist Ludwig Mond and features her likeness along with Greco-Romanesque images now partially obscured by ivy. A close frien

St Pancras and Islington Cemetery

This week, I explore the history of one the largest cemeteries in the UK - St Pancras and Islington Cemetery in North London. St Pancras and Islington Cemetery sits in the London suburb of Finchley. Founded in 1854, the cemetery is now the UK's largest cemetery in terms of numbers of burials with over 800,000 interments. All of these can be seen on the Deceased Online database . The reason why the cemetery is so large is that those buried came from some of the most heavily populated parts of London: St Pancras and Islington. The Ludwig Mond Mausoleum stands in memory of the Mond family of industrialists. Today St Pancras forms part of the London Borough of Camden . In 1854 it covered a large chunk of north London, running from the Gatehouse of Highgate in the north to King's Cross in the south. Islington is St Pancras's neighbour and now stretches from Archway to the City. At the time the Vestry centred around St Mary's Church but, from 1900, Islington would

Examples of Victorian Mourning

Recently, I looked at the etiquette of mourning in the Victorian and Edwardian period, and the influence of Queen Victoria. This week, I examine alternative approaches to the Victorian funeral. Queen Victoria was the head of the Church of England until her death in 1901. Thousands of Victorians followed her example after the death of Prince Albert by arranging elaborate Anglican funerals for their loved ones. Although the Church of England was the official religion, according to the Religious Census of 1851, it was not followed by the majority of the population . Non-conformist forms of Christianity were increasingly popular in the latter half of the 19th century and would have a significant impact on the funeral practices of their adherents. In 1851, non-Anglican Christians included Scottish Presbyterians, Independents, Baptists, Society of Friends, Unitarians, Moravians, Wesleyan Methodists, Calvinistic Methodists, Sandemanians, New Church, Brethren, Roman Catholics, Catholic and

Types of Burial Records

This week's post examines the different types of records you can find in the Deceased Online database. This blog should help you understand the sorts of records we include and some we don't. Primarily, Deceased Online specializes in burial and cremation records and especially statutory records from local councils across the UK. There is no other website which includes these types of records on a national basis. 1. Are all cemetery records held by local authorities? No. Cemeteries in Britain may be owned and managed by councils or may be in the hands of a private or charity organisation. Our database holds information about burial/cremation records and other records held by local authorities along with private cemeteries and crematoria and other records from local and national archives. Most of the burial records currently on our database are held by local councils. These include cemeteries in the following local authorities: Wakefield Metropolitan Borough, West Y