Introduction by Clinton Davies - Autumn 1988 & Spring 1998.

These pages contain a collection of material compiled by John Morris Jones, former Headmaster of George Dixon Junior School, during the period 1960 - 1980. He wrote over 30 booklets in which he covered almost every district of the City of Birmingham. In many ways they were the first detailed local history studies aimed at the non-historian, and particularly focussed at children.

At the time they were produced typewriters and simple ink duplicators were the major tools; mistakes were hard to remove and maps were even more difficult to reproduce clearly. Since that time individuals and local history groups have added somewhat to JMJ's work but his series still forms a good platform for our young people to start from.

As a school librarian I found them a superb resource but difficult for some pupils to use - hence this effort at improvement. I have made no attempt at editing or corrections except obvious typographical errors, nor at bringing things up-to-date with the latest discoveries and developments.

My aim has simply been to make the document more accessible to young readers - splitting long, hard paragraphs and with my limited cartographic skills to redraw more clearly those maps which did not 'Gestetner' very well.

Thanks are due to Mr Andrew Blizzard (former Schools' Liaison Officer with Birmingham Central Library Local Studies Department) for some copies of original documents.

'The Collection' - click on a title to view the booklet:

Aston Manors
Local Rivers as Sources of Power
Rotton Park
Sparkhill and Greet
Battle of Birmingham
Swanshurst Quarter
Duddeston and Nechells
Birmingham Transport Department
Hall Green
Transport in Birmingham
The Waters of Yardley
Maps of Birmingham
Church End, Yardley
More Maps of Birmingham
Manors of Yardley
Plague, Fire and Civil War
St Bernards RC School
Railways come to Birmingham
Redevelopment and Renewal in Birmingham

The above collection does have some gaps! There are some original booklets that we haven't tracked down yet although we believe that some may have been incorporated into later versions. If you know the whereabouts of, or have a copy of any of the following booklets then we would be really grateful if you could let us know so they can be added to this online version.

Wake Green and Greet Common
Walks in Yardley Wood
Round Dudley Road 1978
All around the Ackers
Birmingham manors and manorial families
George Dixon: the man and the schools 1969
Watermills of the Cole Valley 1963
Elan / Claerwen Waterworks 1977

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