TH 19-20 T21 Poverty by Lorna Thomas

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 21 – Poverty

In Poverty Lorna Thomas takes us on a journey through the centuries from the middle ages to the early twentieth century.

The talk is illustrated with pictures and diagrams which illustrate Lorna’s words. Please click on an icon below to open the gallery.

In Feudal times….

We learn about the stratification of society in Feudal times. We find, above all the layers the Pope and Church, and then see the layers within a country’s society. There are five distinct layers from Monarch to Serf.

We also learn of the ‘Three Field’ system of crop rotation which includes fallow land. There are also forests, commons, meadows and rivers to consider.

At this time even the poorest in the community were able to grow crops and raise stock to provide food.

The Black Death

In June 1348 the plague entered England, reportedly through the port of Melcombe Regis. It had already devastated parts of Europe. By October it reaches London and when it starts to fade in 1351 it is estimated that up to 50% of the population across Europe has died.

The Peasants Revolt

An enormous change occurs in society following the Black Death. The Feudal system is dying and the aristocracy pass laws to keep the peasants in their place.

A ‘poll tax’ is the final straw, and Wat Tyler and his band of Kentish men march on London.

Agriculture changes…

We learn of the advances in farming, the growth of yeoman farmers and the effect of enclosures. All of the make the traditional small holding of the peasant farmer untenable and we start to see real poverty.

The Industrial Revolution and the growth of cities

The new farms rely on fewer farm workers and so people gravitate towards the cities where new, mechanised, industries need large numbers of low paid people. These cities generate large slums for the poor. Those who cannot work go hungry.

New roads, the building of canals and, later, the railways aid the industrialisation. These make it easier to transport the new goods over long distances. The railways make it possible for the rapid transport of food to all parts of the country.

The workhouse

Many, at this time, see poverty as a ‘disease’ that people have brought upon themselves.

The workhouse is intended to be the last resort, somewhere so unpleasant that people will do anything to avoid it.

The beginnings of social reform

We learn of the reformers of Victorian times. The realisation during the Boer War that an undernourished population leaves the nation vulnerable.

Lorna ends with the reforms of the Liberal Government elected in 1906.

Listen to this podcast for the full story of poverty through ages.

About this podcast:

This podcast is an edited recording of a talk first given to the Farnham u3a World History Group.

The Farnham u3a site is found here.

This podcast is also available through Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox , Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify, Stitcher and Vurbl.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the theme music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham u3a World History Group 2018 – 2021

T19 20 Talk 20 Are all inventions necessary?

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 20 – Are all inventions necessary

In Are all inventions necessary Joanne Watson introduces us to a great number of inventions that, for some, make one wonder about the sanity of the inventors. For others, we must wonder about the users!

To fully appreciate Joanne’s talk you should follow her presentation, accessed below. The images really do bring the talk to life!

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Three serious inventions

We start with the wheel. Possibly one of the most important inventions ever. It certainly makes driving a car more comfortable!

Joanne then moves on to the Autocannon devised by James Puckle in 1716 and the Gatling Gun. Dr Richard Jordan Gatling firmly believed his gun would help stop the bloodshed on the world’s battlefields!

Then we move to the strange….

A mechanism to help you pull on your boots. Then a ventilated Top Hat that stops the misery of the build up of steam.

Other ideas might have a scientific use

An apparatus to define the height of clouds may well be of meteorological importance. Designs for a family fire escape may be important., if you’re at the right window…..

Then we learn about mechanical leeches, an anti garrotting cravat and a corset with expanding busts. We marvel at the ingenuity of the inventors of yester year!

Then we look at the dangerous…

Joanne tells us about the expansion of crinolines. Harmless you may think …. but stand too close to a fire! But then who’d follow a fashion that requires you to use radio active makeup?

Of course the safety regulations were much less in days gone by. Cocaine in your cough pastilles and toothache drops was seen as  normal.

Then inventions that ‘helped’ the world

The first Traffic Lights in Westminster, sadly resulting in a gas explosion. Then something called the telephone, a device described as ‘too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication’ whilst the Post Office said ‘the Americans have need of the telephone, but we do not.  We have plenty of messenger boys’.

In case we think Joanne is getting serious

We learn of an animal trap that relies on a revolver, a lamp that also acts as a vending machine that could be easily defrauded and a mass shaving apparatus in America.

Listen to the full story of these and many more inventions in this podcast.

About this podcast:

This podcast is an edited recording of a talk first given to the Farnham u3a World History Group.

The Farnham u3a site is found here.

This podcast is also available through Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox , Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify, Stitcher and Vurbl.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the theme music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham u3a World History Group 2018 – 2021

TH 19 20 Talk 19 Paris Peace Conference and the Treaty of Versailles

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 19 – The Paris Peace Conference and the Treaty of Versailles

In The Paris Peace Conference and the Treaty of Versailles David Simpson tells us about the delegates and the decisions taken. This talk follows on from David’s talk  on the end of the First World War which you can listen to here.

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The Big Four

Clemenceau, Lloyd George Orlando and Wilson are known at the conference as the Big Four because they are responsible for the major decisions. In reality Clemenceau, Lloyd George and Wilson are the leaders as they all speak English. Orlando needs an interpreter whereas the Italian Foreign minister is fluent in English as his mother was Welsh!

There are many others at the conference

Over 30 countries send representatives to the conference, however, the losers are not represented.

Sergei Sazonov, the Tsarist Foreign Minister from 1910 to 1916, represents Russia, because there is a civil war in Russia and the Communist government isn’t invited.

T E Lawrence is there to argue in vain for the Arab cause whilst the Japanese seek equal rights and territories. Even Ho Chi Minh is there!

These minor powers attend a weekly plenary session and they have 52 committees. They discuss issues such as prisoners of war, international aviation, undersea cables and the responsibility for the war.

The Peace Treaties

We have all heard of the Treaty of Versailles. The conference results in five different treaties because there is one for each loser!

  • Versailles with Germany signed on 28th June 1919.
  • St Germain with Austria signed on 10th September 1919
  • Neuilly with Bulgaria signed on 27th November 1919
  • Trianon with Hungary signed on 4th June 1920
  • Sevres with Turkey signed on 10th August 1920
What does the conference deliver?
  • The establishment of the League of Nations.
  • The five peace treaties with the defeated nations.
  • The awarding of German and Ottoman possessions as mandates.
  • Reparations and the war guilt clause imposed on Germany.
  • Drawing of new national boundaries attempting to reflect the forces of nationalism.

Listen to the full story in this podcast.

Please note: there are parts where the sound is of variable quality because of line issues.

Copyright and the graphics accompanying this podcast

Unfortunately it has not been possible to include some of the graphics that accompanied the original talk because of copyright issues.

About this podcast:

This podcast is an edited recording of a talk first given to the Farnham u3a World History Group.

The Farnham u3a site is found here.

This podcast is also available through Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox , Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify, Stitcher and Vurbl.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the theme music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham u3a World History Group 2018 – 2021

T18 19-20 The End of World War 1

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 18 – The End of World War 1

In The End of World War 1 David Simpson introduces us to the key people and events of 1918.

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The Road to Peace

The war continued until 11 a.m. because the Allied armies wanted to make sure that they were in a position of strength. They fear that the German army might restart hostilities.

That morning, at a minute to 11, Sergeant Henry N Gunter of the US Army was one of the last people to die. David tells us of the story of his single handed action.

From retreat to victory

The spring offensive of 1918 was a success for the German army. They gained ground and, because of this, Ferdinand Foch and Douglas Haig, the Allied generals, retaliated with the ‘100 day’ offensive. The battlefield mathematics now strongly favour the Allies because of the arrival of the American army.

The 8th August 1918 is ‘the black day in the history of the German Army’ according to Erich Ludendorff, General der Infanterie, because of the advances made by the Allies.

The Fourteen Points

We learn of Woodrow Wilson’s Fourteen Points for Peace. ‘The World must be made safe for democracy. Its peace must be planted upon…political liberty’ – April 1917.

Step by step the Allies gain ground

We hear of the collapse of Austro-Hungary, Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire. The collapse of these countries isolates the German Empire and its people.

Germany becomes a republic

We hear of the mutiny in the fleet at Wilhelmshaven, the activities of Communist agitators, the collapse of the monarchy and, following this, the declaration of a republic.

Armistice

David tells us about the Armistice, taking effect at the ‘Eleventh hour of the Eleventh day of the Eleventh month’. One side feels that ‘the terms …offered were breath-taking in their brutality’, however, US General Pershing says ‘what I dread is that Germany will not know that she is licked’.

Listen to the full story in this podcast.

Please note: there are parts where the sound quality is l

Copyright and the graphics accompanying this podcast

Unfortunately it has not been possible to include some of the graphics that accompanied the original talk because of copyright issues.

About this podcast:

This podcast is an edited recording of a talk first given to the Farnham u3a World History Group.

The Farnham u3a site is found here.

This podcast is also available through Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox , Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify, Stitcher and Vurbl.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the theme music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham u3a World History Group 2018 – 2021

The perplexing history of colour

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 17 – The perplexing history of colour

In The perplexing history of colour as prompted by Gladstone’s analysis of Homer, to give the talk its full title, Alan Freeland tells us about how colours have been described through the ages.

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The use of colour words in English

Alan starts with four  examples – White, Red, Black, and Blue. Pedantsmight often question if we were using the right colour words.

Purely on colour grounds then shouldn’t:

  • White wine  be yellow wine?
  • Red Cabbage be  mauve or purple cabbage?
  • Black Cherries be Red Cherries?
  • And the British sky is often grey rather than blue..

Alan warns us to be aware of the way we name the colour of things because it often isn’t as straight forward  as it  would first appear!

Colour naming survey

Before this talk members were sent a colour spectrum  and asked to answer some questions from their perspective. The answers were varied but there was a distinct difference between the ladies and gentlemen.

Gladstone and Homer

In 1858, aged 49, Gladstone had already been Chancellor of the Exchequer, but not yet Prime Minister. He was the an opposition MP representing Oxford University which, until 1950, sent two MPs to parliament.

He researched and wrote a three volume, 700 page book on Homer and the Homeric Age. Alan admits to us that he has not read Gladstone’s book. He hasn’t even started it. Apparently few who start to read the book ever get beyond volume 1.

Tucked away in Volume 3 is a chapter called Homer’s perception and  use of colour.  Some people must have read this far, because this chapter has caused 150 years of heated academic debate and division.

This talk is about this story.

Gladstone thoroughly analysed Homer’s work from many angles. He notes  very little use of colour in Homer’s writings. The use  implies a very different perception of the world compared to today. He argues that Homer and the ancient Greeks saw a world much closer to black and white than our full colour view of the world.

Listen to the full story in this podcast.

Copyright and the graphics accompanying this podcast

Unfortunately it has not been possible to include some of the graphics that accompanied the original talk. Where possible similar substitutes have been included, however Berlin and Kay’s Basic Colour terms graphics are under copyright.

Follow these links are for material that cannot be published here:

  • The crayola-fication of the world: How we gave colo(u)rs names, and it messed with our brains can be found here.

  • Linguistic relativity and the colour naming debate can be found here.
  • Colo(u)r Naming Across Languages – original paper – click here.
  • World Colo(u)r Survey colour naming reveals universal motifs and their within-language diversity – click here.

About this podcast:

This podcast is an edited recording of a talk first given to the Farnham u3a World History Group.

The Farnham u3a site is found here.

This podcast is also available through Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox , Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify, Stitcher and Vurbl.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the theme music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham u3a World History Group 2018 – 2021

Britain post 1945

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 16 – Britain post 1945

In Britain post 1945 Michael A’Bear tells us about the how Britain evolved in the period between 1945 and the late 1960s. The talk focuses on the changing political landscape and its results.

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Beveridge and the Labour Landslide

Britain post 1945 starts with the report published by William Beveridge in November 1942. The foundations of the Welfare State stem from this report. The post-war Labour government implemented many of the proposals.

Although Britain was virtually bankrupt after the war and rationing expanded, the Labour government brought in social reforms including the National Health Service. They also nationalised industries including the mines and the railways.

Attlee’s administration also started to give independence to parts of the Empire although the partition of the Indian sub-continent resulted in a great deal of violence.

Attlee returned with a reduced majority in the 1950 election.

Churchill returns

Winston Churchill led the Conservative party to victory in the 1951 General Election. Michael tells us that Anthony Eden expected to take over early in the administration but Churchill seemed reluctant to step down.

Eden became Prime Minister in April 1955 and was victorious in the May 1955 election.

Suez

The leader of Egypt, Gamal Abdel Nasser nationalised the Suez Canal in 1956. The British and French governments misread the signals from the US and invaded the area around the canal. Eden snatched defeat from the jaws of victory and this led to Harold Macmillan replacing him.

You’ve never had it so good

Harold Macmillan moved into 10 Downing Street in January 1957. Macmillan created an image of calm and style. The cartoonist Vicky, in the Evening Standard, dubbed him Supermac. Intended as mockery it backfired and Macmillan relished the image.

Macmillan was skilled in foreign relations and was a supporter of decolonisation. He spent much of his time of international issues.

Macmillan won the 1959 General Election with an increase in his majority. This was possibly the high point of his administration.

The economy declined and the balance of payments were in a dire state and Macmillan was losing popularity. Because of this Macmillan fired eight ministers, including the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in his 1962 reshuffle. It is known as the knight of the long knives; because of this the Liberal MP Jeremy Thorpe said ‘greater love hath no man than this, than to lay down his friends for his life’.

The beginning of the end for Supermac.

Out with the old, in with the new

Michael then takes us through the Conservative leadership contest in 1963. Macmillan resigned as he had been diagnosed with prostrate cancer. The grandees of the party selected Alec Douglas Home as his successor. There was a year until the next Election.

Harold Wilson and the Labour party won the election of October 1964 with a small majority.

The 1960s – if you remember them you weren’t there

The talk concludes with a discussion of the Wilson administrations. These took place in a rapidly changing environment with youth coming to the fore. We end in 1968, one of the most revolutionary years since 1848. There was even violence in Grosvenor Square!

About this podcast:

The Farnham u3a site is found here.

This podcast is also available through the Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the theme music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham u3a World History Group 2021

Remedies of Days Past

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 15 – Remedies of Days Past

In Remedies of Days Past Lorna Thomas tells us about the remedies and supplements that her mother used. This is a talk full of the traditional cures that many of us will remember! The talk starts with hand washing, something that came back into vogue in 2020.

Virol

Lorna continues by telling us of a rather delightful food supplement called Virol. According to the advertising this was a supplement that was essential for all children. Fortunately most children who were fed it were not aware of the ingredients.

Horlicks

The talk continues with a beverage used by many at bedtime. We hear the story of this famous beverage introduced by the Horlick brothers in 1873.

The brand was independent until 1969 when the Beecham Group acquired the company. They then became part of GSK. Today Aimia Foods owns the UK business is owned by and Unilever the Indian part.

Liquorice and Senna Pods

We learn about the importance of these two naturally occurring plants in keeping people healthy.

Germolene and Savlon

These two antiseptic creams have been around for a long time. They are both in everyday use today.

Bicarbonate of Soda

Baking soda, sodium bicarbonate, has many uses in addition to helping cakes rise. We lean of its uses in cleaning and deodorising as well. A very useful item.

Glycerin, lemon and honey

Another remedy, this time to sooth a sore throat. Today often just hot lemon and honey.

Recycling

Often thought of as a modern activity this was practiced by our parents. I well remember the man who collected salvage from our home. There really is nothing new!

To view the slides accompanying this talk:

Please click on a thumbnail to open the gallery:

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found here.

This podcast is also available through the Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the theme music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

Tales of Christmas Past

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 30 – Tales of Christmas Past

In Tales of Christmas Past Lorna Thomas tells us how the Christmas that people celebrate today has come about. This is a talk full of the traditions of Christmas!

What does Christmas mean to you?

Lorna starts by asking what Christmas means to us, is it a tree with presents underneath it or does it mean the Nativity? She also explains why the 25th of December, in mid-winter, became the date of this Christian celebration.

Lorna then discusses the divide between those who talk about Christmas and and those who prefer Xmas. Apparently this is something that causes a great deal of tension.

St Stephen

We hear how St Stephen became part of Christmas and why his life is celebrated on the 26th December.

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Many of us know this cumulative song with 12 verses, each celebrating gifts from ‘my true love’. I’m sure that few of us know the deep religious significance of these gifts to members of the Catholic church in England during the years of the Reformation.

The true significance of these words will surprise many.

A Christmas Carol

This book has become part of Christmas for many. 35 years ago the Vicar of St Peters in Wrecclesham, Harry Dickens, used to read parts of the book in church on Christmas Eve.

We hear that, of the many films of the book, that both critics and filmgoers consider the 1951 one starring Alastair Sim as Scrooge to be the best version.

St Nicholas

We learn how St Nicholas is celebrated across the world. Today he seems to have merged in many peoples minds with Father Christmas and become Santa Claus.

Holly, Ivy, Mistletoe, Robins and the other traditions

Christmas today is a complex celebration because of the traditions that have grown up over the centuries. Hear the whole of the Christmas story by listening to this podcast.

To view the slides accompanying this talk:

Please click on a thumbnail to open the gallery:

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found here.

This podcast is also available through the Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the introductory music and Storyblocks has licensed Jingle Bells by Velimir Andreev for use as the ‘outro’ music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

Guildford in 1914

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 14 – Guildford in 1914

In Guildford in 1914 Michael A’Bear takes us back to the events in the town at the start of World War One. He tells us that, until close to the outbreak, most people did not expect war.

How we were entertained

He introduces us to some of the people who were keeping us entertained. Charlie Chaplin who had joined the Keystone Studio and was developing his ‘tramp’ persona. George Bernard Shaw’s play Pygmalion opened in London in April 1914 starring Sir Herbert Tree and Mrs. Patrick Campbell.

W G Grace batted for the last time at Eltham Cricket Club on 25th July, aged 66. Brooklands Race track closed during the war and continued in its role as a flying training centre. It also be came a production, testing and supply centre for military aircraft.

As war became apparent

There was a degree of confusion. The situation resulted in conflicting news reports being published. The population became aware of the situation over a relatively short period.

There was some panic shopping and prices of some foodstuffs rose. The main suppliers in the town tried to calm the demand.

The Queens (Royal West Surrey Regiment)

The first battalion was based at Bordon and the third at Stoughton Barracks when war broke out. The second battalion was in Pretoria.

The third (reserve) battalion was also based in Guildford.

Michael tells us about their mobilisation and the reaction of the towsfolk as they marched to the station and set off for war.

Hear the whole story by listening to this podcast.

To view the photographs accompanying this talk:

Please click on a thumbnail to open the gallery:

Warning: there are some sound glitches because this was only the second time we’d used of Zoom for our meetings.

Please note: Some of the views expressed and expressions used in this talk may reflect views common during this period of history and do not reflect those of the speaker, Farnham U3A World History Group or The MrT Podcast Studio.

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found here.

This podcast is also available through the Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

The Alhambra

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 13 – The Alhambra

In The Alhambra Nigel Marriott tells us about the near 800 year rule by the Moors in Spain.

Invasion and conquest

Tariq Ibn Ziyad invaded in 711, leading 10,000 men. They swept Roderic, the Visigoth king, aside, taking eight years to bring most of the Iberian peninsula under Islamic rule.

The remaining Visigoths and Hispano Romans held out in the north because they offered stubborn and organised resistance.

Moorish Forces

Tariq Ibn Ziyad led an army with both Berber Cavalry and Moorish soldiers. These fighters were feared with good reason. They were very experienced and a key to the invasion of the peninsula.

Reconquest

When Ferdinand and Isabella captured Granada in 1492 Muslim rule came to an end. The war, pushing the Muslim forces south, lasted some centuries.

The Golden Century of Islam

The Caliphate of Cordoba lasted  for the 100 years between the accession of Abd-Al-Rahman III in 912 until a civil war led to the sacking of the city in 1013. Cordoba overtook Constantinople as the most prosperous city in the world. The population grew to 500,000.

Cordoba was a pre-eminent centre of learning and study so scholars came from all over. There were many advances in astronomy, chemistry, surgery and other branches of medicine.

Christians and Jews had to pay the Jizya tax to pay for the war in the North in this period of great religious tolerance.

Culture

We learn about some of the amazing buildings built during this period. Stunning and ornate. The use of water and irrigation. Beautiful garden paradises. The Muslim influence has had a great effect on Spanish history and is responsible for many of the amazing sights in Spain.

Hear the whole story by listening to this podcast.

Please note: Some of the views expressed and expressions used in this talk may reflect views common during this period of history and do not reflect those of the speaker, Farnham U3A World History Group or The MrT Podcast Studio.

To view the photographs accompanying this talk:

I have had to omit many of the photographs used in the original talk because of copyright restrictions. I have tried to find substitutes where there are licences allowing their use however in some cases it is not possible to find substitutes.

Please click on a thumbnail to open the gallery:

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found here.

This podcast is also available through the Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

The Great Depression

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 12 – The Great Depression

In The Great Depression Andrew Cole tells us about the period between 1929 and 1939. Whilst much of his talk is about the US he also tells us about the global context.

Please note: this talk is from early March 2020 and is therefore from before the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic fully hit economies.

What was The Great Depression?

We learn that a great deal has been written about this period. There are over 500 non-fiction books, 100+ television documentaries and at least 5,000 papers. Add to that 11,000+ YouTube videos and 24.4 million hits on Google!

It is described as ‘the longest and most severe economic downturn in the history of the industrialised world’.  The result – widespread long-term unemployment, hardship and unrest.

It covers the period from the Wall Street Crash (24th October 1929 – ‘Black Thursday’) to the start of World War Two (1st September 1939).

Causes:

The European economies were fragile. The First World War had been very expensive. The losers, the Central Powers (Germany, Bulgaria, Austria, Hungary and Turkey), had the added burden of reparations.

In the US people believed that the stock market would continue rising. In the US many shares were bought using loans. Some of the financial institutions used sharp practices.

When the market crashed loans were called in resulting in bankruptcies and there were also bank failures. This then affected industry and resulted in lower wages and unemployment.

This reverberated around the world and there was a global recession.

Remedies:

Three US Presidents were in power during the period leading up to and through the depression:

  • Calvin Coolidge. President from August 1923 to March 1929. Presided over much of the ‘roaring Twenties’.
  • Herbert Hoover. President from March 1929 to March 1933. The Peak to Trough era.
  • Franklin D Roosevelt. President from March 1933 to April 1945. The ‘New Deal’ era and World War II.

The US Governments tried a number of stimulus packages. Many of Hoover’s were unsuccessful whereas Roosevelt’s New Deal were more successful. The Roosevelt era also saw the 1933 Homeowner’s Refinancing Act and the 1935 Social Security Act.

The New Deal also had measures to help farmers who had been hit by both Bank failures and the dust storms cause by over cropping.

The Consequences:

Many consequences of The Great Depression have been suggested, amongst them are:

  • The rise of Hitler and World War II
  • A change in public attitudes to risk taking.
  • A greater understanding for the need for regulation although many might question its effectiveness.
  • The role of Governments and Central Banks.

Hear the whole story by listening to this podcast.

Please note: Some of the views expressed and expressions used in this talk reflect views common during this period of history and do not reflect those of the speaker, Farnham U3A World History Group or The MrT Podcast Studio.

To view the photographs accompanying this talk:

These graphics are from the talk. For copyright reasons some of the photographs, recordings, newspaper headlines and cartoons used in the original talk have had to be omitted.

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References:

The list of References for further reading is here.

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found here.

This podcast is also available through the Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

Pax Britannica

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 11 – Pax Britannica

Pax Britannica describes the role of the Royal Navy in the century between 1815 and 1914, where Britain acted as ‘global policeman’

The talk is given by Elizabeth Anson. She has a great personal knowledge of the Royal Navy because she is the daughter of a Rear Admiral. Her father was Flag Officer, Malta when she was born. She was also the wife of Rear Admiral Sir Peter Anson.

A hundred years without a major conflict:

The ‘War of 1812‘ with the United States was the last major naval conflict until World War 1. The war saw the smaller Frigate, HMS Shannon, defeat the US Navy’s refitted Chesapeake off Boston.

Role of the Navy:

For most of the Nineteenth Century the Navy’s role protected British trade. It also enforced the law passed in 1807 that abolished slavery as Naval ships intercepted suspected ‘slavers’.

Britain’s global trading resulted in naval bases being set up across the world. They were critical to the Navy’s global role providing dockyards and resupply points.

The ‘Trincomalee Bell’:

We hear the story of the ‘Trincomalee Bell’, originally presented to Admiral Austen, the brother of Jane Austen. The bell travelled from Naval base to Naval base. The bell was sent to Jane Austen’s home in Chawton after a request by Admiral Peter Anson.

Hear the whole story by listening to this podcast. There is an echo and some electronic buzzing sounds resulting from the PA system.

Please note: Some of the views expressed in this talk reflect views common during this period of history and do not reflect those of the speaker, Farnham U3A World History Group or The MrT Podcast Studio.

To view the photographs accompanying this talk:

These pictures are free for use with this podcast. They differ from those shown at the original talk. Please click on a thumbnail to open the gallery:

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found here.

This podcast is also available through the Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

The Amritsar Massacre

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 10 – The Amritsar Massacre and its aftermath

John Hambly tells us about the Amritsar Massacre and its aftermath. Often referred to as the Jallianwala Bagh massacre because that was the area of Amritsar where it took place in.

John starts by setting the scene and telling us about the key players on both sides.

Background:

During the First World War the Indian sub-continent had contributed many soldiers to the British war effort. Because of this there were expectations from the population for increased status.

The Defence of India Act of 1915 limited civil and political liberties. The very unpopular Rowlatt Act followed.

Michael O’Dwyer:

The Lieutenant Governor of the Punjab had been active in the passing of the Defence of India Act because it gave him great powers!

From mid-March 1919 the CID in Amritsar kept a close surveillance of two Gandhian non-violent Indian nationalists. On 10th April 1919, O’Dwyer summoned them, had them arrested and secretly escorted to Dharamasala, at the foot of the Himalayas.

He supported Dyer’s actions in the massacre. Aged 75, he was shot dead, 21 years later, at a meeting in Caxton Hall, Westminster.

Brigadier General Reginald Dyer

The Brigadier General rank was temporary because his substantive rank was Colonel.

He is known as the ‘Butcher of Amritsar’. This is because he gave the order to fire. This resulted in the death of at least 379 people and injuries to over 1,000 more.

Dyer was removed from duty following the massacre and widely condemned in both Britain and India.

The aftermath

Many senior Indians had been pushing for Dominion status (like Canada and Australia) before the massacre. After, many abandoned their loyalty to British rule and became Nationalists who distrusted British rule.

Hear the whole story by listening to this podcast. There is an echo and some electronic buzzing sounds resulting from the PA system.

The are no graphics to accompany this talk.

Please Note: The description of scenes in this talk may be distressing to some people.

The quotations and actions described in this talk represent views held at the time of the Massacre. They do not represent the views of John Hambly, the Farnham U3A World History Group and The MrT Podcast Studio.

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found here.

This podcast is also available through the Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

British Art between the Wars

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 09 – British Art  between the Wars

Peter Duffy tells us about the key contributors to British Art between the Wars. Peter starts by introducing is to Britain before the First World War. He tells us about art at that time,

Artists:

We are introduced to the leading artistic talents of the time.

  • Paul Nash a British surrealist painter and war artist. He was also a photographer, writer and designer of applied art. He was among the most important landscape artists of the time and played a key role in the development of Modernism in English art.

Self portrait woodcut – in the Public Domain

  • by George Charles Beresford, half-plate glass negative, 1913 – In the Public Domain

    Wyndham Lewis was an English writer, painter, and critic. He was a co-founder of the Vorticist art movement and edited the Vorticist literary magazine called Blast.

Posted to the western front as a second lieutenant in the Royal Artillery, he spent much of his time ‘spotting’ in Forward Observation Posts. He registered targets and called down fire from batteries massed around the rim of the Ypres Salient. After the 3rd Battle of Ypres he was appointed as an official war artist for both the Canadian and British governments.

  • We hear about other members of the Vortices Group including:
    • William Roberts,
    • David Bomberg,
    • Eric Wadsworth
    • Jacob Epstein,
    • Jessica Dismorr,
    • C R W Nevinson, all of whom studied at the Slade School of Art. Many of these artists studied under Henry Tonks, an ex surgeon given to sarcasm.
More artists:

Peter then talks about the artists:

  • Stanley Spencer,
  • Mark Gertler,
  • Dora Carrington, and
  • Ben Nicholson.

World War 1:

The war had a great impact on Society and the artists. There was a great difference between those who fought and those who didn’t.

The Bloomsbury Group artists were non-combatants and were conscious of the changes that the war had brought. This led to divergences of opinion.

Many of the artists who were war artists were very far behind the lines others had direct experience of the conflict.

Those who had experience of the front line include Paul Nash, David Bomberg, Wyndham Lewis, William Roberts and David Jones. Jessica Dismorr cared for the wounded.

Hear the whole story by listening to this fascinating podcast.

The are no graphics to accompany this talk:

Copyright restrictions apply to much of the art in the original talk and so it cannot be included on this page. You will find much of it on the Internet on the sites of the owners of the copyright.

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found at Farnham U3A Home Page.

This podcast is also available through the Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

Ataturk – the greatest Nation Builder of modern times

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 08 – Ataturk – the greatest Nation Builder of modern times

Alan Freeland tells us the amazing story of the life of  Ataturk – the greatest Nation Builder of modern times. To call Ataturk a complex person is a great understatement! Alan takes us through the ups and downs of Ataturk’s life.

Everything changed under Ataturk. The name Ataturk means ‘Father of the nation of Turkey’. For many years the major European powers wielded global control. This was the first time a nation stood up to Europe and won.

Section 1:

Alan calls this session ‘historiography’. The dictionary defines this as ‘the study of the writing of history and of written histories’. Alan certainly did a great deal of research for this talk.

Section 2:

This section sets the scene. Alan talks about the rise and decline of the Ottoman Empire. He also introduces us to the complex culture in Turkey at that time. We learn that although Turkey was an Islamic country other religions were tolerated.

Section 3:

Alan continues by telling us about the complexities of Ataturk’s life. We learn about his focus on modernising Turkey and the lengths that he went to to achieve his aims.

The talk does cover a significant amount of history as this is critical for our understanding of his achievements. Alan touches on the First World War because that was where Ataturk made his reputation.

We hear about the war to achieve independence and how the republic came about.

And finally….

We hear about his relationships with other people. Alan tells us about his marriage to someone who fully understood his mission. We hear of the care she tried to give him because of his heath. Being a strong willed person it was in vain!

Listen to the podcast to find out more!

The are no graphics to accompany this talk
About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found at Farnham U3A Home Page.

This podcast is also available through the Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

Sleepwalking into World War 1

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 06 – Sleepwalking into World War 1

Lorna Thomas tells us the fascinating story about the nations Sleepwalking into World War 1. She starts by telling us about the protagonists.

A time of great Empires, Empires with ambitions to expand. At the same time, some Empires were weakening with states seeking  independence. Because of these factors it was a time of stress, particularly in Europe.

A World War:

Soldiers came from across the Empires of the belligerents. The British forces had soldiers from Canada, India, the West Indies, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa to name a few. The French and German armies were similar.

The Catalyst:

Lorna discusses the issues in the Austro Hungarian Empire and the support it was receiving from Germany.

We hear about Arch Duke Franz Ferdinand’s visit to Sarajevo and are introduced to the principal players. Lorna tells us about the demands made on Serbia following the assassination.

The Alliances:

The key alliances were:

  • The Triple Alliance – Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy, and
  • The Triple Entente – France, Great Britain and Russia. In addition Serbia and Montenegro were allies of Russia.
Overconfidence in the outcome?

Franz Joseph was 83 at the time of Sarajevo. One of his key advisers believed in ‘war, war, war’. In addition Kaiser Wilhelm’s advisers had planned for war in Europe for many years.

Russia had a vast army and promised support to Serbia and Montenegro.

The launching of HMS Dreadnought made many of the world’s navies obsolete.

France had lost territory to Germany in the war of 1870 and resented the defeat.

Germany believed that they would win because if the Triple Entente fought they’d be defeated and if they didn’t, the alliance would collapse.

Fallout in the family?

Queen Victoria, the Grand-mamma of Europe, might have had an influence if she’d been alive because Kaiser Wilhelm, Tsar Nicholas and King George were all close relatives.

Listen to the podcast to find out more!

View the slides that accompany this talk:

Please click on a thumbnail to open the gallery:

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found at Farnham U3A Home Page.

This podcast is also available through the Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

All about Prohibition

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 06 – Prohibition

Joanne Watson tells us about Prohibition. She starts by covering the journey that the US followed to the passing of the Eighteenth Amendment. We then hear about what happened after.

Moral conscience:

There was a flowering of moral conscience after the abolition of slavery. American adults drank an average of 1.7 bottles of 80% proof spirits a week in 1830. That equates to 3.5 bottles of spirits at today’s strength.

Someone commented ‘Americans drink from the crack of dawn to the next crack of dawn’.

The first suggestions of Prohibition came in the 1840s. The US enacted their first laws in 1851.

Alcohol generates taxes

Alcohol taxes came and went in the US. They were applied when the government was short of money.

The road to Prohibition:

The United States started to look at Prohibition from 1896. The Acts that were proposed never got past the Committee Stages.

Canada enacted their laws before the US. In Canada doctors could prescribe alcohol. The were queues of patients before holidays – the prescription? Pints!

‘Lemonade’ Lucy Hayes was the wife of President Rutherford B Hayes. She was an activist and he banned alcohol in the White House.

Carrie Amelia Nation was another active member of the Temperance movement. She used to stand outside bars singing hymns and throwing rocks. Then she graduated to using a hatchet to destroy the bars. She was arrested many times but made money from the sales of replica hatchets.

The British Government enacted licensing restrictions during the First World War. Lloyd George said ‘we are fighting the Germans, the Austrians and the drink and the drink is the deadliest’.

75% of the US States ratified the Eighteenth Amendment by early January 1919.

The law took effect in January 1920 and then the lawlessness began. F Scott Fitzgerald said that ‘during prohibition the parties were bigger, the pace was faster and the morals were looser’.

You’ll need to listen to Joanne to hear the full story.

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found at Farnham U3A Home Page.

This podcast is also available through the Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

Into the Outback (part B)

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 05b – Into the Outback (part B) with Captain Charles Sturt and John McDouall Stuart

Into the Outback (part B) is Michael A’Bear’s talk about the explorers Captain Charles Sturt and John McDouall Stuart. He tells us about their discoveries and the cost to their health.

Captain Charles Sturt:

Charles Sturt comes from the generation before Burke and Wills. He was born in 1795 in Bengal. At the age of 5 he went to England to go to school. He lived with members of his family he had not met before.

He went to Prep school and then on to Harrow. Although Cambridge University beckoned the family finances weren’t enough. He got a commission in the Army instead and served in the Peninsular War.

After promotion to Captain he volunteered to take command of the guard for a convict ship. He liked Australia and decided to stay.

Sturt became Surveyor General for South Australia. Unfortunately the British Government appointed someone else and he was out of a job! He married and let his wife, and some other women, accompany his expedition to the Murray Darling River.

Sadly he was never a wealthy man and ventures in both Australia and Britain were not a success. He returned to England and died at the age of 74.

John McDouall Stuart:

He was born in Scotland. He arrived in Australia in 1839, aged 24.

Stuart was one of the most successful explorers of Australia. He led the first expedition that crossed the centre of Australia from South to North and returned safely. He showed great care for his men travelling in harsh country and has the reputation that he never lost a man.

The Australian Overland Telegraph Line was constructed along the route he found. This enabled rapid transmission of messages to Britain and the (then) Empire. The main road from Port Augusta, in South Australia, to Darwin, in the Northern Territory, also follows his route. It was named the Stuart Highway in 1942.

After many years of hard conditions, malnutrition, scurvy and other problems he was nearly blind. In April 1864 he left Australia for Britain. He died in London two years later.

Accompanying pictures:

Please click on a thumbnail to open the gallery:

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found at Farnham U3A Home Page.

This podcast is also available through the Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

Burke and Wills – Talk 5a

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 05a – The Burke and Wills Expedition

Michael A’Bear’s talk is about the Burke and Wills Expedition into the Outback of Australia in 1860 to 1861. He tells us of initial success, suspect deeds and disaster!

The plan:

The Royal Society of Victoria organised the expedition. It started from Melbourne. The objective – to cross Australia from South to North to reach the Gulf of Carpentaria.

The distance is 2,000 miles through inhospitable territory. Territory that had not been explored by the settlers before.

Cooper’s Creek:

The advance party reached Cooper’s Creek by early summer. They established a depot camp with stores there. Four men remained at this camp.  They agreed to wait for 4 months. Burke, Wills and two others set off for the Gulf of Carpentaria. It was mid summer with temperatures of 50°C in the shade.

The Gulf of Carpentaria:

They got within sight of the coast but swamps prevented them from reaching it. The weather going north had been hot and dry but on the way back they had tropical monsoons. The party were also desperately short of food.

They shot, and ate, their only horse as well as three camels. They jettisoned equipment because of the reduced number of pack animals. Burke and Gray went down with dysentery and on 17th April Gray died.

Back at Cooper’s Creek:

The party at the base were suffering from scurvy. They waited 18 weeks and were running low on supplies. They buried supplies and left in the morning on 21st April.

That evening, Burke, Wills and King arrived. 9 hours too late!

They rested for a few days. They then set off for Mount Hopeless as there was a cattle station there.

The journey to Mount Hopeless

The journey led to the deaths of Burke and Wills. Six rescue groups went to look for them. King was like a scarecrow when rescued. He went back to Melbourne to recover. He lived for another eleven years, dying at the age of 33.

Accompanying pictures:

Please click on a thumbnail to open the gallery:

About this podcast:

The Farnham U3A site is found at Farnham U3A Home Page.

This podcast is also available through the Apple Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020

Victorian Philanthropy

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 04 – Victorian Philanthropy and its Legacy

Judith Edge’s talk is about Victorian Philanthropy and its Legacy. She introduces us to four different people and one couple.

Joseph Rowntree:

A Quaker and businessman from York. He made his fortune from chocolate and created three Charitable trusts in 1904:

  • The Joseph Rowntree Village Trust to set up and manage the village of New Earswick. The village was built to provide homes for his employees.
  • The Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust. It is a Quaker trust that supports people who address the root causes of conflict and injustice.
  • The Joseph Rowntree Social Services Trust.
Octavia Hill:

We learn that she was an English social reformer. Octavia was concerned with the inhabitants of cities, especially London. She was a major force in the development of social housing.

A believer in self-reliance, this was a feature in the work that she did. She believed in ‘open spaces’ for all and was one of the three founders of the National Trust.

Angela Burdett-Coutts:

She was the daughter of Sir Francis Burdett, 5th Baronet and Sophia, the daughter of banker Thomas Coutts. In 1837 she became one of the wealthiest women in England. She inherited her grandfather’s fortune of around £1.8 million (£160 million in 2019).

She spent much of the rest of her life trying to use her fortune for good works. A great friend of Charles Dickens and the Duke of Wellington she married her American secretary in 1881. She was 67, he was 29! Because she married a foreigner 60% of her income transferred to her sister.

George Peabody:

Many of us have heard of the Peabody Trust. Did we know that he was an American?

George was born in Massachusetts in a town that now bears his name. His family were poor. He went into business and then into banking and moved to London in 1837.

In 1854 he partnered with J S Morgan and after his retirement the company became J P Morgan & Co.

Ada and Alfred Salter:

The talk finishes with the story of this couple who dedicated much of their lives to the people of Bermondsey.

About this podcast:

There are neither photographs nor a presentation available to accompany this podcast.

The Farnham U3A site is found at Farnham U3A Home Page.

This podcast is also available through the Apple Podcasts, Deezer, Podchaser, Spotify and Stitcher ‘apps’.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A World History Group 2020