The Kirke Correspondence in the Wrench Collection, 1854-1956

Scope and Content

This small collection consists solely of correspondence, giving a fascinating insight into the life of a soldier during the Crimean War. There are two letters of 1854 from John Henry Kirke to his mother and sisters, written on board ship en route to the Crimea. These are complimented by a volume of typescript letters, and extracts of letters, from Kirke and Edward Mason Wrench compiled in 1956 by the latter's grandson, Edward Gillam Wrench. The letters are all from the Crimea to relatives in England, and range in date from December 1854 through to September 1855.

Administrative / Biographical History

Edward M Wrench was the son of Thomas William Wrench (1805-1875) and Diana Maria Kirke (1810-1876). He served in the Crimea with his cousin and friend, John Henry Kirke, (1833-1892), the son of his mother's brother, William Kirke (1799-1843) who had married Ann White (1807-1874). The marriage of Edward M. Wrench and Annie Kirke (sister of John Henry Kirke) in 1861 further strengthened the link between the Wrench family and the Kirkes of East Markham, Nottinghamshire.

See the fonds entry for the Wrench Collections (Wr-Wre) for more details about the family.


The three items are arranged in date order.

Conditions Governing Access

Accessible to all registered readers.

Other Finding Aids

Copyright in all Finding Aids belongs to the University of Nottingham.

In the Reading Room, King's Meadow Campus:

Typescript Catalogue, 1 p

At the National Register of Archives, London:

Typescript Catalogue, 1 p

On the World Wide Web:

Catalogue available through the website of Manuscripts and Special Collections, Manuscripts Online Catalogue

The typescript catalogue is also available online on the national A2A (Access to Archives) website.

Conditions Governing Use

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

Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult.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

Custodial History

This correspondence forms a sub-fonds of the Wrench family collection and came to the University Library from a member of the Kirke family in 1981.

Related Material

See also the Kirke of East Markham (Ki) collection; the fonds entry for all the Wrench collections (WrWre); and the other sub-fonds and series which make up the Wrench Collections (WrBT, Wr, WrC, WrDX, and Wre).


Geographical Names