Family history is predominantly about people, but to look at those people without taking into account the place where they lived would lead to a very narrow view. So much more can be understood about our ancestors by studying the place they lived, the people they lived with, how they worked and how they played.
The one place study is a hybrid of family history and local history, rather than considering just one family line, the whole community is studied. Like family history the emphasis is on people, but in a one place study the common link between them is place rather than just family ties.
November saw the launch of the new One Place Studies website, which is administered by Alex Coles (who must have a time machine to find the time for many projects she is involved in).
The website appears to have two distinct functions, to provide information on which one place studies are being undertaken (in the form of an index) and resources for those undertaking a one place study (in the form of articles and a discussion forum).
The index provides a list of all the studies and is dominated by England (not that I’m complaining). Selecting a county will take you to a map showing all the one place studies in that county, plus neighbouring counties.
One place studiers (is that the right name?) seem to be a little shy about using the discussion forum or perhaps they are just too busy. The resources are an interesting selection of articles on the ins and outs of one place studies. Well worth a read even if you are not engaged in a one place study or considering one. I look forward to reading more in the future.
The website is well designed and has some great content, which has brought me another stage closer to launching my own one place study.