Wednesday, 5 February 2020

Archive run

I'm just back from a short London trip. Basically an archive run. Though I did meet up up with a few people for a beer or two. I'm not going to visit London without a trip to the Royal Oak.

Now the London Metropolitan Archives doesn't open on Fridays, it rules out the most obvious option, which woulg be to fly in Thursday evening and back again on Saturday. Instead, I did Saturday to Monday.

All was going well until Monday morning. When I woke up around 4 AM feeling shit. Not to worry. What's the worst it could be? Yes, there had been loads of people in face masks at Schiphol and Heathrow. But I'm sure it takes the corona virus longer than a day or two to incubate.

Then I remembered: I was innoculated against yellow fever last week. They warned me I might have some flu-like symptoms. Let's hope that's what it is.

Feeling exhausted isn't the best condition for an archive blitz. It involves a lot of standing and snapping. Despite everything, I still managed 600 photos in three hours. Which is about par for the course.

I was there for something quite specific.The later WW II records of Truman's Burton brewery. When I startred writing Truman resipes for my next book, I noticed how much was missing. Too much, really. 1941, 1942, 1944, 1945 and 1946. Especially the first two, as those were the years when the interesting stuff happened.

As I knew I'd have time for more, I opted to get in some research for my book after next. Which consisted of looking at more Truman's records. Lots of fun when you feel like you might vomit or faint at any moment.

I also did a few Whitbread's. Because I noticed I was two away from the full set. But a couple of other records on account of my Birthday Home Brew business. Recently someone asked for a recipe from 1958. I didn't have one for the specific date. So I suggested I could harvest a recipe of twop while in the archive.

Now I just have to transcribe all the information into my spreadsheet.  Which will be a real pleasure, given how lovely Truman brewers; handwriting was. Almost as good as mine.

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