Play Your Part in City History; New Technology Is Bringing Tyneside's Past to Life. TONY HENDERSON Reports on a Successful Scheme

The Journal (Newcastle, England), November 3, 2012 | Go to article overview

Play Your Part in City History; New Technology Is Bringing Tyneside's Past to Life. TONY HENDERSON Reports on a Successful Scheme


Byline: TONY HENDERSON

THOUSANDS have downloaded a free mobile phone app which reveals stories about real-life historical characters who once worked and lived in Newcastle.

Now people are being asked to come up with creative writing about historical photographs illustrating people and scenes from the Newcastle of the 1800s and 1900s. The photographs will be used in the app, called Hidden Newcastle.

John Coburn, from Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums, said: "Hidden Newcastle is a free app which contains stories about people who lived in the city between the 17th and 19th Centuries. It has already been a huge success.

"Now we want to extend the app to include fascinating historical photography and also some creative writing from people who live in the North East today.

Continued "We want to inspire people with hidden stories from Newcastle's past."

People are invited to submit animaginative caption of 140 characters or less, inspired by one of the photographs. A panel of judges will select the winning captions which will be used in the app. A PS20 fee will also be paid to the writer of each winning caption. The Hidden Newcastle. app is free and has been produced by Tyne and Wear Archives and Museumsand Newcastle. Libraries. It reveals stories about the characters who once lived and worked in the city, from witch-hunters to body snatchers. Each story in the app is linked to the location where it is said to have taken place and people can unlock more stories as they move around the city. To see the photographs and submit a caption for the competition, go to www.hiddenNewcastle. org The deadline for submissions is December 7. The Newversion of Hidden Newcastle. will be launched in January. The app is available for both iPhone and Android and can be downloaded from www.hiddenNewcastle.org Newcastle. has never been short of characters who could have stepped out of a novel. John Coburn said: "We used historical maps, books, photographic archives and newspaper archives to compile the information in the app. "It is easy to forget these tales happened to real people and took place where we stand today. "Using this app you can visit those locations and listen to these fascinating stories on the spot where they took place." Among the characters featured in the app are Black Jackie Johnson, who offered a powder which he claimed made the taker invisible. He made his product by boiling a black cat for three hours on a Sunday. The cat's heart was dried in an oven until it was reduced to a fine powder, which was hidden in a churchyard, and visited each night at midnight for seven consecutive nights. Lieutenant Hobson's job in 1649 was to oversee a witchfinder's activities. …

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