By Ceri Houlbrook, University of Hertfordshire
People fear what they don’t understand. But what you don’t understand is often determined by the period you live in, and so for every generation this may well be something different.
Accessing the fears and anxieties of people living in the past is no easy feat. There are very few historical sources that can give us direct insight into the types of things that worried, daunted, and frightened people. Hospital records are one of those few. And so, to gain some understanding of what people feared a century ago, I delved into the case-books of Lancaster Moor Hospital (pictured above), currently held in the Lancashire Archives.