Typescript copies of 'George: the early days', and 'The Story of Wallingwells', by Nina Slingsby Smith. Undated, c. 1989

Scope and Content

The collection comprises copies of two typed manuscripts written by Nina Slingsby Smith.

The first (MS 498/1) is a copy of the original manuscript of 'George: the early days', first written as part of 'George: Memoirs of a Gentleman's Gentleman' but published separately in 1990. It describes the childhood of George Slingsby, who grew up in Retford, Nottinghamshire. Details are given of Retford before 1900; schooldays; the 'big freeze' in Retford in the winter of 1895; celebrations and holidays including Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee, Empire Day and Christmas; agricultural work; Retford characters; poaching; and George's first employment at Rufford Abbey.

The second (MS 498/2) is 'The Story of Wallingwells'. It describes the history and inhabitants of Wallingwells Hall, in the parish of Carlton in Lindrick near Worksop in Nottinghamshire, which was a nunnery until its dissolution in the 1530s, and then a private home, owned by the White family from 1699 to 1928. This article is unpublished.

Administrative / Biographical History

George Slingsby (1887-1967) spent the first part of his working life in service, beginning as a garden boy and hall boy at Rufford Abbey, Nottinghamshire. He then worked as a footman at Burnham Beeches, Buckinghamshire and Welbeck Abbey, Nottinghamshire; as a butler to the Foljamb family at Osberton Hall, Nottinghamshire; as a first footman back at Rufford; and finally as valet to Sir Frederick Orr Lewis of Enfield, Middlesex. He left service in 1916 after surviving the sinking of the 'Lusitania'.

Nina Slingsby Smith, George's daughter, has published two biographical accounts of her father's life in service, published as 'George: Memoirs of a Gentleman's Gentleman' (London: Jonathan Cape, 1984) and 'George: the early days' (Worksop: Milepost Publications, 1990).


No archival arrangement has been necessary.

Conditions Governing Access

Accessible to all readers.

Other Finding Aids

This description is the only finding aid available for the collection. Copyright on the description belongs to the University of Nottingham.

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements


Conditions Governing Use

Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the Keeper of Manuscripts and Special Collections (email mss-library@nottingham.ac.uk).

Reprographic copies can be supplied for educational use and private study purposes only, depending on access status and the condition of the documents.

Custodial History

The papers were acquired by the University of Nottingham's Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections in July 1989.


Nina Slingsby Smith, 'George: Memoirs of a Gentleman's Gentleman' (London: Jonathan Cape, 1984)Nina Slingsby Smith, 'George: the early days' (Worksop: Milepost Publications, 1990)