Tag Archives | Disability History Month

Too deaf to work on the railway lines?

As part of Disability History Month, our recent blog posts (here and here) have focused on physical disabilities caused by railway work. But what about railway workers who might have had a life-long disability, or a condition which grew progressively worse over time? This might include hearing loss, a topic that’s been relevant in a […]

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Seeing disability in our database

In last week’s Disability History Month blog post, we looked at a case which showed staff with hearing loss were employed by the railway companies. Sometimes this was in roles we wouldn’t expect to find them – in which hearing might have had important implications for safety. In our final Disability History Month post for […]

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Work-caused disability: Frederick Potter, Portsmouth

In last week’s blog, starting our contributions to Disability History Month, we considered where we might see learning disabilities in our project work. This week we return to physical disabilities, by looking at a case of a disability resulting from the work that railway staff were asked to do. It’s also a case local to […]

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Learning disabilities in railway disability history

Earlier this year, we added to our database an additional 17,000 cases of accident to British & Irish railway workers before 1939. Sadly, this means large numbers of people killed and injured. The evidence left behind by their accidents offers us new opportunities to contribute to the important field of disability history. That’s significant year-round, […]

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‘danger may arise in the employment of a man with defective sight’

Continuing our look at both disability in railway service and our forthcoming new dataset, this week our blog focuses on a case in which sight loss probably had a role to play. This is another case from next week’s data release: around 17,000 more cases, investigated by the railway inspectors between 1900-1910 and 1921-1939. Today […]

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‘Slightly deaf’ at Forty Hill

We’ve blogged in the past about disabled staff employed in railway service, including hearing loss, the subject of today’s post. Where it appears in the project database it relates almost exclusively to roles that involved working on the tracks or around moving trains. This might reflect what was investigated by the accident inspectors, or the […]

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Major Keaton Kay 1871–1935

This week’s blog post is another that came about via an enquiry received by the project. Derek, this week’s author, was researching his family history, including a railway staff accident. Whilst we weren’t able to help directly – the date was earlier than our current project coverage, though we are moving backwards deeper into the […]

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On Track for Change – a visitor’s perspective

In this guest post, Louise Bell reflects on her visit to the ‘On Track for Change’ exhibition at Head of Steam, earlier this year. The exhibition took a look at how artificial limbs were made, used and understood on the railways, and included a creative response to the relationships between railways, prostheses and their owners […]

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Robert Johnson – visualising disability

Some months ago I was sent an intriguing image by Robert Kitching of the Bowes Railway (whose guest post will be appearing soon!). The image showed a railwayman, supported by crutches and lacking both legs below the knee. Robert knew we’d be interested, especially since images of the workers involved in accidents are often hard […]

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