Local Studies books and pamphlets have now been added to the online library catalogue, click onto the Catalogue link above.
Following 3 years of hard work by staff and volunteers the main card catalogue for Local Studies is available online.However if you are looking for photographs, maps, newspaper indexing or family history resources please ask staff to help you use the card catalogues when you visit.
Thread Mill and Dam, Darlington by S. Fothergill
If you like this painting call in to the Centre for Local Studies to see other framed paintings and images on display around the walls.
Post House Wynd, Darlington by H.S. (attributed to)
We have no information about this artist. If you have further details, please contact us.
If you find this painting interesting why not call in to the Centre for Local Studies and see the other framed items on display around the walls.
Brigham's Bookshop, Coniscliffe Road
by S. Clark
James Atkinson by an unknown artist
James Atkinson, Oriental Scholar and Artist, born at Darlington, 1780, died in London, 1852. This painting was presented to this Library in 1893 and shows Atkinson in his uniform as surgeon in the army.
North Lodge Park Pond and Boat House, 1899
by P.P. Norman
On this page we will feature some of our most useful and interesting items of stock.
Some items you will be familiar with, others we hope to introduce you to!
Edward Pease Public Library, Crown Street, with bust of Edward Pease and Portrait of the first Librarian, Frank Burgoyne, Entrance of the Town Hall & Coniscliffe Road
by W. Walker Hodgson
This painting by W. Walker Hodgson who resided in Darlington for a while was given to the Library with the complements of Thomas Wood & Sons, November 1909
Call into the Centre for Local Studies during September to see the original painting hanging on the wall.
Charter of Incorporation of the Borough of Darlington and The County Borough of Darlington Official Handbook
Another bumper month with two books!
Although one is no more than a fragile pamphlet, it is a copy of the Charter of Incorporation of the Borough of Darlington. The other book is The County Borough of Darlington Official Handbook for 1967, which is an interesting look at the town in that year, the Centenary of the Charter of Incorporation. There are descriptions of new housing, schools, shops and businesses and adverts for businesses you may remember. The book also celebrated the Centenary of the Charter of Incorporation 1867-1967 and includes information about the Mayor’s Chain and the Ceremonial Mace.
September 2017 is the 150th Anniversary of the Charter of Incorporation of the Borough of Darlington. The Charter, which was was granted by Queen Victoria on 13th September 1867 enhanced the political prestige of the town by enabling Darlington to be democratically self - governed. The Charter meant that Darlington ratepayers could now elect a council and have a voice in local politics.
Darlington‘s first council election was held in December 1867 and eighteen town councillors were voted into office. The town had been divided into six wards by the Charter and each ward could elect three councillors.
The first Mayor was Henry Pease, son of Joseph. Joseph Pease had been nominated for the role, but owing to his age and infirmity, he declined the office.
The first elected Member of Parliament for Darlington was Edmund Backhouse.
The books will be on display in the Centre for Local Studies throughout September along with a small display.
A History of The Denes, Darlington by Chris Lloyd, & Memories of The Denes, Darlington, Celebrating this beautiful urban resource as told by those who know and love The Denes
both published in 2012
These companion volumes tell the history and celebrate the memories of people who used The Denes for play, walking and other leisure activities from its earliest days to recent times. The books are an easy very readable mix of history, clear informative maps, photographs and lively memories and stories.
There is detailed information about the Denes street names at the back of Chris Lloyd's book with sections on Late - Victorian Statesmen and Canadian streets, and a wonderful fold out plan of the different Denes such as Sheddy Dene, Footie Dene and Paddly Dene in the people’s stories volume, to which the contributors refer when telling their stories.
The books are always available in the Centre for Local Studies. There are also lending copies in both Cockerton Library and Crown Street.
England's Vast Industries and Mercantile Marine
A Pictorial Exposition of the Industiral Life of England of the Present Day
Designed, Printed and Published by Messrs. Bemrose & Sons Ltd. London, Derby, Leeds, and Manchester, 1908,
added to library stock 1935
A beautifully produced and unusually colourful book focusing on the Industries in the larger towns and cities of the North East, including Darlington. The book was produced in 1908 to promote the industries in the North East to merchants and importers in places such as France, Russia, Italy, Japan, Argentina, and New South Wales. It was also sent to Chambers of Commerce and British Consuls throughout the world, (for a fuller list see page iii).
There is a good commercial index listing the types of machinery and products manufactured with adverts and a detailed summary of the product, and the same index repeated in French.
The book opens with The Darlington Forge Company, manufacturers of iron, steel forgings and steel castings. It outlines the history of the company, the size and description of its buildings and some of the work it has undertaken such as stern frames, brackets and rudders for steamers for principal mail and passenger lines.
Sections on local companies are interspersed with articles on topics such as North-East England and the North-Eastern Railway, The Tees Ports, Darlington, contributed by Edward Wooler, and The Principal Characteristics of Franco-British Commerce.
Various Darlington companies are featured including Ord and Maddsion whose advert is shown here.
A rhinoceros bone from Brierton, nr. West Hartlepool and a skeleton of elk (Cervus alces) from Neasham, near Darlington by C. T. Trechmann
A fascinating little book about the local finds of these amazing animals in 1938 & 1939. The rhinoceros bone was found in a sand and gravel quarry, the elk in clay and peat cuttings made by the Neasham Brick and Tile Company.
There are photographs and geological descriptions of both.
Come in and read this amazing account.
The Darlington Illustrated Year Book for the Municipal Year, 1903
This was the first and possibly only (Let us know if you have come across later editions) of the Darlington year book, a slim volume with details of Committees, Magistrates, postal information, lists of public buildings, offices, and lists of trades unions. There are tram timetables for North Road and Cockerton, a list of places of divine worship and more unusually the National Telephone Company Limited - a list of Darlington Subscribers with names addresses and their telephone numbers, surely one the first telephone directories for the town.
Every left hand page of the book has adverts for Darlington shops and businesses, so it complements the Local Studies May display. The adverts have information about the company, photographs or drawings of the stock for sale sometimes with prices, or even one or two have photographs of the shop front with proud staff outside. Adverts are always interesting, whether they help with your research or just provide amusement and fascination at the goods on sale.
The Public Catalogue Foundation
Oil Paintings in Public Ownership in County Durham
Published in 2008 this is one of a series of publications covering the whole of the United Kingdom with the intention of creating a record of all of the oil, tempera and acrylic paintings in public ownership.
The County Durham volume includes paintings held here in the Centre for Local Studies and in the Darlington Borough Art Collection, as well as those at Beamish, the Bowes Museum and other locations in County Durham. It provides a wonderful quick reference guide to items held in Darlington and further afield.
Any catalogue has its limitations and of course paintings have been added to the Local Studies collection since this date and therefore do not appear in the catalogue. Sadly the many watercolours and works in other media do not appear either.
Amongst the oils in the Library collection are three portraits of unknown women. If you think you might know who any of them are please do let us know.
Several other volumes of the Public Catalogue Foundation covering other parts of the UK are available in the Reference Library or you can search the full catalogue online at artuk.org
You might enjoy exploring previous books of the month. You can do this below. Just select a title you would like to find out more about and click on the link.
Remember you can come in to the Centre for Local Studies anytime to see the original book. Just call in and ask the staff. They will find the book for you.
If you have used a book in Local Studies which you have found useful or interesting and you think should be featured here, do let us know.
Enjoy finding out more!
Henry Pease - A Short Story of His Life by Mary Pease Explore here
Memories of North Road Locomotive Works Explore here
Biographical and historical notes on bygone Darlington by W.J. Mountford Explore here
The History of the Polam Christmas Tree Explore here
Durham at the Opening of the Twentieth Century and Durham Contemporary Biographies Explore here
Kelly's Directories Explore here
Religion, Business and Society by Anne Orde Explore here
Dodds' Darlington Annual for 1917 Explore here