T.W. Thompson Collection (Gypsy and Traveller related tales and research material)

Scope and Content

Manuscript and research notes made by T. W Thompson of tales recounted by Gypsies and Travellers and information gathered during these encounters, (notes on language, customs, familial connections, biographical and genealogical details).

Mainly referencing English Gypsy Traveller families of Gray, Smith, Lee, Lock, Young and Boswell. Also includes but is not limited to some references to Lovell, Heron and Woods families.

Split into two notebook series.

Items individually listed.

Access Information

Access to this material is unrestricted.

Users are advised that items within this collection may include terms that would now be considered unacceptable. These original terms (titles/references) have however been included in the catalogue descriptions. We are fully aware that these terms are unacceptable and potentially offensive but we have kept them in to preserve historical accuracy and provide social and historical context to these items as they are part of the story that the archive tells. These terms do not reflect the views or opinions of the University or its staff and we apologise for any offence that their use may cause.

Notes on terminology and spellings
Please note that there may be differences in the terms used to describe the particular communities represented in this collection, many of which have changed over time and may continue to change.
At the time this catalogue was created (2016/17) there are many definitions that identify different cultural and ethnic groups with their varied histories, traditions and associations with a travelling life.
These can include but are not limited to those that have been recognised in UK law as ethnic groups; English and Welsh (Romany) Gypsies, Irish and Scottish Travellers; and non-ethnic groups that consider themselves distinct even if these have not been recognised in UK law, e.g. New Travellers, Showmen and Bargees. Outside of the UK 'Gypsy' may also be considered offensive and 'Roma' is often used instead as the universally preferred term although this term also represents a wide range of distinct groups, (e.g. Sinti, Manouche).
It is our intention to respectfully and (where possible) accurately refer to these different communities in the catalogue. For this reason we ask you to note the following with regards to the descriptions in this catalogue that have been based on these current definitions:
1) As many of these definitions have only come into being since the collection was created/1st catalogued, please be aware that original descriptions may not accurately reflect the group to which it refers, (e.g. the word 'Gypsy,' may have been used to describe those now recognised as Irish Travellers/Roma). Therefore it is worth searching under various terms, e.g. 'Romany' and 'Traveller,' to broaden the scope of search results as well as using the alternative historical spellings, 'Gipsy,' 'Gipsie,' or 'Romani.'
2) Where no original description exists and it is not possible to properly identify a distinct group they will be described as "Gypsy Traveller" (within UK setting), "Roma" for those living/recently originating outside the UK or "Gypsy, Traveller, Roma " for origin/locations unknown. References to any non - ethnic groups will similarly be capitalised to respectfully acknowledge all groups.

Material in this collection is in copyright. Photocopies or digital images can only be supplied by the Library for research or private study within the terms of copyright legislation. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain the copyright holder's permission to reproduce for any other purpose. Guidance is available on tracing copyright status and ownership.