15/02/2017 Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Tips on using the National Railway Museum archive to search for railway worker ancestors

e0433ba2-9b2c-4630-ba1d-e78277fa9da2

The National Railway Museum (NRM) can help to bring your ancestor’s work on the railway to life. NRM archivist, Alison Kay, shows you how to get the best from these very special collections.

The National Railway Museum has many published guides and resources in its library that can help anyone researching railway ancestors.

Search the catalogue

Before visiting the archive, we recommend some reconnaissance on our library catalogue – typing in ‘family history’ will bring up our full selection of titles.

Join the Family Tree community  
Follow us on facebook
Follow us on twitter
Sign up for our free e-newsletter
Discover Family Tree magazine

Visit the archive

On visiting Search Engine (the National Railway Museum’s library and archive centre), you can read up on the history of the railway company your ancestor worked for; listen to oral history recordings from people doing similar jobs; see photos of the location where they worked; and hold tools similar to those they handled.

Search Engine is usually open Wednesdays to Saturdays, 10am to 5.45pm.

Popular collections to study

Find clues in staff magazines, for those companies that produced them, of the major railway companies of the 20th century, and get an insight into what life was like working on the railways.

Research railway workers killed in the war in NRM’s online database of over 20,000 railwaymen who died in the First World War – our volunteers add information and photographs every week. 

Consult the official accident reports, find examples of certificates and books presented to staff, and explore the family and organisational archives that we hold as well as collections of large industrial works.

Whatever role your ancestor worked in on the railways, you will find something in the NRM collections to link with your past.

National Railway Museum, Leeman Road, York YO26 4XJ; tel: 0844 815 3139; website.

Find out more about tracing your railway ancestors in the March issue of Family Tree magazine, available in print and digital editions.

 

 

 

 

 

(Image © Nilfanion)

Back to News

15/02/2017 Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Recent Updates

The royal train of Tsar Nicholas I

The royal train of Tsar Nicholas I gives us a unique insight into how the Romanovs travelled, taking their ...


Make merry in the month of May

This May Day, village greens up and down the country will be given over to fairs and festivities. Caroline ...


Village WW1 project remembers a lost generation

Discover a new village project to remember and honour 61 of its menfolk who died in the First World War, to ...


Tracing circus ancestors: Q&A with genealogist & book author Steve Ward

As we mark 250 years of the modern circus, learn about the life of the British man credited with 'inventing' ...


Other News

New project will see contemporary artworks installed among the ancient ruins of Herculaneum and Pompeii

Over the next year, two Roman houses - the House of the Beautiful Courtyard at Herculaneum and the House of ...


In the Footsteps of Malins

Ross Barnwell tells us about his upcoming short film entitled 'Beaumont-Hamel' out this July ...


Regent's Park to host pop-up World War I sorting office

Visitors are invited to make a free trip to an ‘interactive’ pop-up WW1 mail sorting office in London's ...


Volunteer opportunities at the Society of Genealogists

The Society of Genealogists has released details of a number of volunteer roles, based either at the ...