So with that story out of the way I'm free to get back to my longer works in progress.
At the moment I'm checking a few facts- dates of events that cannot be manipulated; such as the date the Treaty of Amiens was actually signed. It's only a background detail but if it was signed later in the year then everything in the story has to be shifted too.
This is where old newspapers come in useful.
Old newspapers are being digitised and added to the British Newspaper Archive each year. It's a partnership between Find My Past and the British Library, their aim is to digitise 40 million newspaper pages "over the next 10 years".
It's possible to search for free, but if you want to access the page and save/print the details there is a charge, but they do have a number of subscription options which is helpful.
I did eventually discover in the Morning Post when the Treaty of Amiens (between the French and the English) was actually signed- 25th March 1802. Admittedly the article was that date the following year, looking back on events, but another article elsewhere confirmed the date too.
So the 25th of next month it will have been 214 years ago, and we can still read the views expressed at that time...
From 1850 onwards there's a lot more available than 1710-1830's, but those early newspapers and sheets that survived would probably be very delicate anyway.
While the annual subscription seems like a lot of money, when compared with the time and cost of travelling to places to scan through film, or maybe even microfiche in some cases, it doesn't start to look too bad for my needs.
As with any research there's the risk of distractions, so I'm limiting myself to an hour or two in the early or late evening, and I bookmark anything relevant in folders in my account, so I can come back to them again.
image courtesy of Naypong & www.freedigitalphotos.net