John Beckett
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New approaches
Family history, towns, landscape and other specialisms
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This chapter observes that localities can be studied through various disciplines that are related to local history including family history, urban history and landscape history. These are some of the major disciplines that have come out from under the umbrella. Specialisms such as folklore, related to plough plays and similar community information, could be included in it. Specialist subjects also spin off from local history such as railway and canal history. Consequently, what was once labeled as local history is now a rather different concept. Since it seems as if almost every subject now has its dedicated followers, with their own societies, newsletters and journals, local history is an amalgam of a great many disciplines and specialities working together to uncover the past. Since it involves both professionals and amateurs, dedicated scholars and enthusiasts, it is something of a motley bunch, but collectively they are all contributing to the greater understanding of past local societies.

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