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How to do your own research

If you wanted to find out about Norwich commissioners not already researched by the history detectives, you could consult the Norwich section of the 1821 Land Tax Act which is available online.

Identify a land tax commissioner to research

However, if you want to investigate those named in the Act from other parts of the country, you will need to choose a county or shire from the lists below. Please note places are listed as they appear on the 1821 Land Tax Act, with individual boroughs, cities, towns and other locations given within each county.

Then contact the Parliamentary Archives telling them which particular place you are interested in. They will then be able to provide you with the relevant section of the Act.

County Record Offices

Once you have chosen your commissioner, the relevant town or county record office should be able to assist you. A good starting point is Access to Archives which is part of the UK archives network.

Norfolk Record Office

If you are researching commissioners in Norfolk you can search their online catalogue for records relating to them.

In some instances it may be possible to find collections of family papers on the commissioners you are interested in, for example the history detectives found that the Bolingbroke Collection contained material on the comissioner John Harrison Yallop.

It is also worth looking at records of specific institutions, for example the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital records contained information on one of the commissioners investigated by the history detectives. In the case of Elisha de Hague, the Colman Manuscript Collection, which is an antiquarian collection of material relating to Norfolk, was found to contain the minutes of the Society of United Friars. Basic biographical details may also be found in published reference works and trade directories.

Parliamentary Archives

The online catalogue Portcullis is a good starting point to search for material. Instead of just searching the names of the commissioners, it is possible to search for Acts of Parliament relating to the town or county from which your comissioner is from.

This may reveal a range of Acts passed to implement schemes of public works such as new roads and canals. By using these Acts, it may be possible to identify Private Bill records such as plans and books which contain the names of some of the commissioners.

In some instances you may find that the commissioners were directly involved in the schemes and may be listed as subscribers, in other cases they may have owned or occupied property that would be affected by the proposed works.

In the case of the commissioners investigated by the history detectives they found that it was possible to use books of reference in conjunction with plans to identify property owned by the commissioners.