Register of Electors and York Directory Information

Register of Electors and York Directory Information

Last Saturday I spent a couple of hours (and £3) in York Reference Library gathering more information about the occupants of the houses over the war period. I was surprised to see the library was so packed with people on such a sunny day, it seems Facebook is preferable to sunshine for many of the under 30’s.

I spent as little time as I had to to find out who lived where through the war years and there wasn’t as much information as I’d really have liked. I had information from the 1911 census, which was taken on Sunday April 2nd that year, so as electoral lists are usually put together the previous year I reckoned that I should start with the list for 1912-13. I photographed the information from that year, the 1913-1914 and the 1914-1915 lists, then there was a gap in the lists to 1918, 1919 and 1920 as there were no published electoral lists for the years 1916 and 1917.

Next I had a look to see if there were any street directories for the years between 1911 and 1920, these can be useful to identify occupants but like the electoral lists they tend to be about a year out of date when they are published. I found a Kelly’s directory for the North and East Ridings of Yorkshire which included the City of York and also the 1920 City year book and business directory, both of these had street directories so I photographed the information for the three streets that I’m covering.

The last thing  I wanted to see was the absent voters list, to find out what year it covered. There were actually three absent voters lists for 1918, 1919 and 1920-1924, the information I already had was from 1918 and checking the 1919 list for the streets showed the same information, however the 1920-1924 list contained only one entry for the 3 streets; Wiliam Pattinson Banyard of 20 Upper Price Street.

I should now have a fairly good idea of who lived in each house between 1911 and 1920 so the only thing left to do is enter all the information for each of the houses. As I write I’ve got as far as the 1918 list of electors which has proven really useful as it came after the Representation of the People Act of 1918 which enfranchised all men over the age of 21 and also some women over the age of 30. This has provided the names of some wives of people who moved into houses after the 1911 census so that should help identify the families on the 1911 census.

As soon as I’ve finished the dull job of entering all this information I can get on with the interesting bit which is the research!

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