Military Historian and Author STEPHEN BULL
Publications 3
Lord Derby, Lancashire's highest-ranked nobleman and its principal royalist, once offered the opinion that the English civil wars had been a 'general plague of madness'. Complex and bedevilling, the earl defied anyone to tell the complete story of 'so foolish, so wicked, so lasting a war'. Yet attempting to chronicle and to explain the events is both fascinating and hugely important. Nationally and at the county level the impact and significance of the wars can hardly be over-stated: the conflict involved our ancestors fighting one another, on and off, for a period of nine years; almost every part of Lancashire witnessed warfare of some kind at one time or another, and several towns in particular saw bloody sieges and at least one episode characterised as a massacre.Nationally the wars resulted in the execution of the king; in 1651 the Earl of Derby himself was executed in Bolton in large measure because he had taken a leading part in the so-called massacre in that town in 1644. In the early months of the civil wars many could barely distinguish what it was that divided people in 'this war without an enemy', as the royalist William Waller famously wrote; yet by the end of it parliament had abolished monarchy itself and created the only republic in over a millennium of England's history.
During the bloody war in the Far East many thousands of Allied troops fell into the hands of the Japanese. Prime Minister Tojo promised that none would be pampered, and so it was, with 16,000 perishing on the Burma-Thailand Railway alone. Yet the story of the PoW is also one of resilience and creativity in adversity. Among the Lancashire men who were captured were a surprising number of gifted artists, who set out to prove that walls do not a prison make, nor iron bars a cage. Despite a woeful lack of materials, they created a permanent record of the realities of daily life in the camps, revealing through their work just how resourceful and indomitable the human spirit can be. With the help of old comrades, other museums, and collectors, Lancashire County Museums has published Nor Iron Bars to mark the sixtieth anniversary of the end of the Second World War, and to pay tribute to the remarkable contribution made by Lancashire veterans.
The County of Lancashire - and the City of Lancaster in particular - have a richer archaeological heritage than is often appreciated. This was most dramatically demonstrated in November 2005 with the discovery of a massive stone bearing the image of a triumphant horseman and his fallen foe. This was without doubt one of the most significant finds of recent years. But who was the horseman, could the many fragments ever be satisfactorily be reassembled, and what did this stunning object mean for our history? To hope to answer these questions, and to put this artefact where it might be enjoyed by Lancastrians and visitors alike, would take the co-operative efforts of numerous museums, four universities, and the enthusiastic support of local people. This richly illustrated volume represents a first attempt - by archaeologists, classical historians, conservators and curators - to tell the stone's story, and in doing so to unravel some of the mysteries surrounding Insus, son of Vodullus.
The elite infantry Stosstruppen (or 'stormtroops') of the German army won significant victories on the battlefields of the Western Front and in Italy too, often against the odds. In their search for tactical progress, the Stosstruppen effectively invented modern infantry tactics, and time and again proved their bravery on the battlefield. Germany's tanks in World War II were accompanied by a new type of soldier, the world's first fully mechanized infantrymen, or panzergrenadiers, popularly known as "stormtroopers." Interesting full page photographs are combined with colorful drawings to make this a Great book. The text is rich with first hand accounts of events, and Have alot of quotes from original training manuals which make it a really special book. This fully illustrated account of the uniforms, equipment and tactics of the panzergrenadiers, both Army and Waffen-SS, also includes a bibliography and a world directory of museums and interest groups.
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