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Posted by andrew west on Dec 1st, 2011Wonderful historical research Chris. My father's close friend, who we called an uncle, was born in Bermondsy in the forst decade of 1900 and his tales of growing up in East London parallel your own findings on Charlie's life. As a londoner myself I find your work very appealing.
Posted by chris on Dec 20th, 2011Thanks Andrew. Always good to hear from people with common interests. I'm still researching Charlie, mainly now concentrating on his experiences in the First World War. Had a great trip to France in October, trying to 'follow in his footsteps' in the area of the Battle of Cambrai (November 1917). I must get around to loading up more of his diary on the website. I've been side-tracked onto publicity for the book I wrote about Charlie's grandfather, George Clarke ('The Chieftain'). If you are interested in Victorian London you may well enjoy that as well (subtle hint!).
Posted by chris on Mar 7th, 2012Have just 'cleaned up' the Guestbook', but don't let the blank space put you off leaving a comment or question. For the most up-to-date information on my research please visit my Home page and my Blog. Cheers, Chris Payne
Posted by admin on Apr 2nd, 2012Anyone interested in dating old photographs has the option of a number of books and websites that can be helpful. Thanks to my cousin, Mike, I've recently inherited a number of 'new' family photographs including a substantial number of my great-grandmother, Clara Smith (nee Stanbridge). Clara seems to have enjoyed being in front of a camera and I have photos of her (most of which can be dated with reasonable accuracy) taken between 1883 and 1940 which I have now assembled into a small chronological photo-gallery. If you are interested to see the styles of clothing worn during that era, or are simply interested in looking at old photographs, please go to http://chrispaynebooks.com/index.php?cID=269
Posted by chris on Apr 6th, 2012I have just added an edited version of an interview about 'The Chieftain' to this website. It can be accessed via the Home Page and the True Crime Page.
Posted by chris on Apr 8th, 2012Anyone interested in researching individuals who served in the First World War might be interested in my most recent blog post on 'War Diaries', posted today.
Posted by Bonnie MacBird on Apr 9th, 2012Fascinating, informative site. Enjoyed your well documented research, and the historical photos as well. I will check out your book, The Chieftain!
Posted by chris on Apr 11th, 2012Today's new addition to the website is a podcast narrative of the Preface to The Chieftain. This provides the opportunity for you to hear more detail about the background to the book. Links to the podcast can be found on the Home and True Crime pages
Posted by chris on Apr 11th, 2012Glad you enjoyed the site, Bonnie. Am always updating and adding to it so please come back! 'The Chieftain' is available internationally through Amazon and a number of other online booksellers, as well as from bookshops.
Posted by chris on Apr 25th, 2012A new blog post on the subject of reviews and features on 'The Chieftain', is now available at 'My Blog'.
Posted by chris on May 9th, 2012Were the Victorian Scotland Yard detectives bumbling, incompetent and uninteresting, as sometimes portrayed in fiction? Think again! Read my latest blog posting at http://chrispaynebooks.com/blog/!
Posted by chris on May 19th, 2012Three new video-podcasts dealing with some of the experiences of a conscripted British soldier during the First World War have now been posted at http://chrispaynebooks.com/index.php?cID=283
Posted by Chris Payne on Jul 16th, 2012See my latest blog post about significant moments in history that occurred in the week beginning 16 July (in 1870 and 1918), seen through the eyes of Chief Inspector George Clarke ('The Chieftain') and Private Charlie Payne
Posted by Robert Bartlett on Aug 2nd, 2012http://surreyconstabularyhistorysociety.weebly.com/index.html
I have not yet bought a copy of The Chieftain but will
Thought you might find my site interesting
Have you any research of cases that spilled over into the Surrey Constabulary area?
I am happy to get details of your book published in our electronic newsletter that goes out at the end of each month - no cost to you
Posted by Chris Payne on Aug 3rd, 2012Hi Bob. Many thanks for your interest in 'The Chieftain' and hope that you enjoy reading it. I would be most grateful if you could send out details of the book in your electronic newsletter; perhaps you could include a link to the most relevant page of my website which is probably the 'True Crime' page at http://chrispaynebooks.com/publications/true-crime/. You ask if any of the cases in 'The Chieftain' spilled over into the Surrey constabulary area. None immediately come to mind, though I am not entirely sure where the policing boundaries fell in 1876 in the case of the Poisoning of Charles Bravo in Balham (see 'The Chieftain' pages 170-184). Certainly it took 10-12 days before Bravo's death was notified to Scotland Yard. I have never found any information to suggest that another police force was dealing with the issue, but I guess that Surrey might have been the closest. Certainly George Clarke ('The Chieftain') was regularly involved in policing horse racing meetings at Epsom and Sandown Park. He did try to get permission to prosecute some landowners and bookmakers at Epsom for illegal betting (see 'the Chieftain' pages 125-126) but didn't get the necessary Home Office approval. Since I did my research on Clarke a new digitised newspaper database has become available (as you are probably aware) with a lot more local and regional newspapers represented. I have thought of doing further searches on Clarke using that extended database but I haven't yet got around to it as I'm concentrating on research on the First World War for my next book. I do however have some family interest in the Surrey Constabulary, having recently discovered that I had another great-great-grandfather (on my mother's side) in the Surrey Police. His name was Henry Stephen Smith and he was based as a PC at Godstone in the 1871 and 1881 censuses, and at Burstow n 1891 (but retired by 1901). I'll take a more-detailed look at your website for advice on how to find out more, but if you have any 'quick tips' I would be very grateful. His having the surname 'Smith' is not a very helpful factor!
Posted by chris on Sep 28th, 2012Don't forget that you can sign up to receive email notification of my regular blog posts by going to my Blog page and in the right hand column (scroll down a bit) and insert your email address and click 'Subscribe'.
Posted by Chris Payne on Nov 13th, 2012I have now accumulated a number of Blog posts over the last couple of months, dealing with aspects of Victorian police history, and aspects of the Great War. The most recent account, which I posted today is a description of the acquittal of Detective Chief Inspector George Clarke at the end of his trial for corruption at the Old Bailey in 1877. Go to my blog page (via the navigation bar at the top of this webpage) to locate this and many other posts.
Posted by Michael Ryan on Feb 16th, 2013Dear Chris, just by sheer chance I came across a blog of November 28 2011. It concerned a search of Battalion War Diairies at the National Archives at Kew. You were looking for anything that would give some insight about your grandfather's brother-in-law Mike. For a very log time I have been researching my family tree, like many thousand's of others. Amongst this of course was my father's side of the family which involved his time in the force's. I have had help from various people but namely Graham Sacker who is one of the many that produce the Emma Gee magazine that is dedicated to the Machine Gun Corps of WW1. Most strange in my search for my father's army records was the fact that I found all of his three elder brother's but very little of his. I'm starting to ramble a bit now, so I'll say the main reason for getting in touch. The coincidence or sheer chance is that Mike, your grandfather's brother-in-law was in the same MGC the 193rd as my father. When you perused those War Diairies were there any significant names or actions written down or were there more that could be looked at concerning the 193rd Company?
With kind regards Mike Ryan.
Posted by chris on Feb 16th, 2013Hi Mike. Thanks for contacting me. I'm not sure from your message whether you have researched War Diaries before or not. So here goes. The 193 Machine Gun Company war diary (covering the period 1 December 1916 to 28 February 1918, with daily entries) is available at The National Archives, Kew. Its reference number is WO95/2943/3. It does contain a good description of the actions that the Company was involved in (at least in the sections that I needed to look at). If your father was an officer, he may have been mentioned by name from time to time, but if he (like Mike) was one of the 'Other Ranks' it is very unlikely that he would have been mentioned by name unless he was awarded one of the medals for bravery. The war diary will generally tell you the approximate location of the Company on any particular day which always makes a trip to the battlefields more rewarding. Most war diaries will often give quite specific map references that would enable you to find the locations of the Company, or even specific MG teams, quite precisely. You will need access to trench maps to 'translate' these location references. I have found the The National Archives British Trench map Atlas DVD to be very good for that purpose (but it is quite a costly investment). I hope that this response helps. Please contact me again if you think I can help further. Regards, Chris Payne