Black Country Museum

Golly, where does the time go?  I can’t believe it’s 2 weeks since my visit to the West Midlands, where the Black Country Museum is based.    It’s called the Black Country in that area because of all the mines and industry which abounded in the 19th century. 

This is the house which my great great great grandparents, Benjamin and Elizabeth Meredith, lived in in the latter half of the 1800s.  It is called the Tilted Cottage because of the effects of the subsidence caused by mining in the area!   Apparently the Museum took great care to rebuild it that way when they moved it brick by brick to its new home.

Tilted cottage, Black Country Museum

Benjamin was a bricklayer but I don’t know if he built this house.  Most of my other ancestors were coal miners, potters and farmers, though the butt filers listed on several of the census returns amused the kids!  Typical male teenage humour…

The main part of the museum consisted of a reconstructed village – here are the ‘back to back’ terraced houses typical of a lot of Victorian workers’ buildings.    They are two houses put together only one room wide.  I used to live in a terraced house till I was 11 and it felt strangely familiar, although it wasn’t a ‘back to back’ type.  Click on the link if you are unclear what I mean – I was a bit vague about it and looked it up on Wikipedia!

back to back houses

I liked it because you could wander around all the back gardens and yards and see exactly what was there, the washrooms and coal houses and chicken coops…

The museum also links up with the canal system and going down there I saw these geese with their goslings:

geese and gloslings

It reminded me of the train journey up there, where the train driver stopped for some geese and their young family who were crossing the railway track!

This was the view from my cafe table when I was eating my lunch:

Black Country Museum

You could also go down a mine but I passed on that as I’ve been down several already and preferred to stay in the warm sunny outdoors!

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8 Responses to Black Country Museum

  1. Jennifer Rose June 15, 2009 at 1:31 pm #

    looks like a great place to visit 🙂 really interesting that they rebuilt a lot of those buildings to be exactly as they were when moved

  2. Brianna June 15, 2009 at 3:28 pm #

    That is SO COOL that you can go back to a place where your great great great grandparents lived. And turned into a museum, at that! This is really aamzing, thanks for sharing!

  3. Dominic June 15, 2009 at 5:10 pm #

    I went yesterday and it is so cool. The mine is easily the best

  4. Valeri June 16, 2009 at 1:42 pm #

    Great pictures Liz. Makes me want to visit! Val

  5. Jean Levert Hood June 18, 2009 at 2:57 pm #

    So interesting, Liz, and love the geese!!

  6. Shelley June 20, 2009 at 9:28 am #

    My ancestors came from the West Midlands and I’d love to go there too sometime!

  7. CAHRLES June 21, 2009 at 3:48 pm #

    Not worth the long journey. would much rather go to Alton Towers

  8. Joyce June 24, 2009 at 4:26 pm #

    You can’t be allowed to get away with talking about the Black Country Museum without mentioning the fish and chips!
    They are wonderful – well worth the queuing one has to do to get them.

    The peg rugs are worth seeing too – interesting how they’ve become fashionable now.