Homecoming of the Quest for the Lost Lord Keeper

I just love a dramatic breakthrough.  And a month before my recent trip to the UK, the Quest for the Lost Lord Keeper had a couple of them – so it seemed high time to throw a “coming out” party for the Quest!

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Final Day in London…

We could have used another week on this trip, but I don’t know where I’d have gotten the energy for it! We were down to our last full day in London (Friday) and then it was back to the colonies the next.  As the sun came up, it was hard to see how any day could hope to compete with the day before – but this day was a fighter!  It started with a “before hours” escorted visit to inspect and photograph the massive Norris Monument (normally not approachable by the public) in Westminster Abbey. This was followed by a tour of Richard Lane’s boyhood school, the Westminster School, which is still in business.  Then, we were off to the National Archives in Kew to spend the afternoon going through a long list of documents I’d reserved for viewing. Among these were three original letters to and from Richard Lane in exile during the last few months of his life…

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One of the most interesting days of my life….

There are days you will remember always. This was one of them!

Yesterday was quite a day.  You’d have heard about it last night, but I was simply too tired to do anything but have a glass of wine, savor a bit of chocolate and wonder at the day I’d just had.  Just because you put a lot of work into something doesn’t mean its going to lead somewhere interesting.  Nor does it mean that it will be well received, let alone be referred to as “scholarly”…

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Report from Oxford and Northampton

We’ve been on the ground in England for a few days now.  Although I wanted to spend a few minutes writing a quick report before now, this is the first chance we’ve had.  I’m exhausted, but its been a great trip so far.   To be sure, we’ve had a couple of disappointments, but also some major wins!

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A Few Bold Predictions!

I’ve done about all I can to be ready.  Its been four months of steady preparation, with the last month feeling a lot like a cattle drive! I have requested several dozen 400 year old documents for viewing in five different archives, have planned stops at around a dozen historic sites (including 4 churches), have arranged around a dozen appointments, will be giving three presentations and have arranged three happy hours / mixers.  Now, its time to finish packing, relax, and settle into the reality that not everything is going to go my way.

But there are some very interesting possibilities twinkling on the other side of that long plan ride!   This  seems like a good time to go on the record with a few predictions that just might work out…

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Announcement! The Public Debut of “The Quest for the Lost Lord Keeper” !

This is going to be a very big year for “the Quest”!  There has been a breakthrough – a dramatic one – which I will be writing about once I am back from my trip to the UK.  I always knew there would be a “right time” to start taking this story public, and I’ve decided that time is now.  While I am in the UK, I will be giving two talks in Jersey, and will also be presenting my research into the historic “Trial of Strafford” painting at Westminster in London.  Finally, a week after I return home, I will present the U.S. debut of the “Quest for the Lost Lord Keeper” at the beautiful Cherokee Castle in Sedalia.

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“Da Vinci Code” Style Forensics: Symbols and Secrets Lurking Within the Pages of an Ancient Law Book (Part II)

I was surprised when the staff at the Middle Temple Archives office introduced me to the obscure craft of papermaking, and the hidden signatures that lie within the pages of old books…

In Part I of this article, we discussed the forensics of book structure, paper types and how to spot various restoration and repair techniques when authenticating an ancient book.  In this article, we step into the world within the paper itself, identifying the craftsman’s watermarks in the pages of my copy of Lane’s Reports, and attempting to “fingerprint” the sheets within that book to the specific screen mould each sheet was produced from.  I believe it possible to extend this analysis to “reverse engineer” the original screen moulds used to make each sheet of paper within my book… Continue reading ““Da Vinci Code” Style Forensics: Symbols and Secrets Lurking Within the Pages of an Ancient Law Book (Part II)”