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Digital Subscriptions > Family Tree > Family Tree April 2018 > A history of houses in miniature

A history of houses in miniature

When researching our ancestors’ daily lives the detail is all-important. Here Sadie Brownexplores a creative way to add a new dimension to family history, exploring and remembering their homes in miniature


Research & recreate the homes of your forebears

Overall view of the The Priory

Seeing how our ancestors skillfully built such solid, architecturally detailed homes in an age where the technology afforded to today’s architects and builders was unimaginable never fails to amaze and inspire. Standing in the shade of an old house on a sunny day and you find yourself quite literally standing in the shadow of history.

Crosthwaite Cottage, created in miniature by Peter and Kate Kelsall of Herdwick Landscapes, allows us to follow the journey of one family home as it evolves across more than a century through three models. From a humble cottage at the beginning of the 18th century, with a box bed of the day and a steep ladder leading to additional sleeping accommodation in the cramped loft, the proportions of the house alter dramatically by 1750. By this point, there’s a front door in addition to the existing side entrance, the walls have been raised and a new stone staircase wends its way up to two bedrooms. There’s also an annex built onto the rear of the cottage, housing a buttery.

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What is it that you're yearning to discover about your family history? Just thinking of starting to do your family tree? We can help (see our beginner tips this issue). Looking to stretch your learning? Check out our Academy pages to get practical experience to improve your research knowledge and skills. Or just want a spot of ancestor-hunting inspiration and a great read (our reader stories are cracking!)? You've come to the right place. These are just a few of the genealogy gems to be found within the pages of Family Tree - enjoy!