Going by the book


I had to scan it quickly before it decomposed. I think this bookseller had a mask and pistol… but here it is: Men of Aldridge, published in 1957 and written by Jim Gould.

After the subject was broached here a few weeks ago by reader Brian Edwards, I resolved to find a copy of Jim Gould’s 1957 book ‘Men of Aldridge’, in order to read it for myself – which I finally managed to do last week.

The copy I bought – battered, falling apart – cost a fair amount, and I think with the rarity of the work and the unlikelihood of it being issued again, I’ve decided to scan it and make it available here on the blog for readers to peruse.

At 140 odd pages, it’s too big to do in one go, so here’s the first half consisting of chapters I to VIII dealing with the early history of Aldridge and it’s people.

I have read the whole book, but I’m not going to comment on the contents because I want to see what you readers think and I’d rather not lead the witnesses, so to speak… Suffice it to say Jim Gould was clearly a man of no little talent and charisma, and I pay tribute to an interesting, engaging and fascinating work.

Please, feel free to download the PDF at the link below, and have a good read. I shall make the remainder available at some point next week, so you can read the whole thing. It’s been straightened and is searchable for text.

Men of Aldridge Part one Chapters I-VIII PDF format 23.8 megabytes

This is a fascinating book and I recommend it to anyone interested not only in Aldridge and it’s local history, but in Jim Gould too.

Please feel free to comment, and let me know what you spot – there’s even a reference or two in there to early Brownhills! Go for it – post your thoughts here, or mail me – BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com. Cheers.

A gallery of the first 20 pages is below – click on any image to see the full size scan.

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4 Responses to Going by the book

  1. Clive says:

    Thanks for the download Bob.

  2. paul says:

    Great stuff Bob thanks for this !

  3. Geoffrey Boulton says:

    Well done Bob. Jim did do a second edition which came out in paperback.
    In 1960 I wrote a University dissertation on the 20th Century History of Aldridge UDC and how it was influenced by its neighbouring big neighbours. There is a copy in the Walsall Local History Library.
    Why is there no through bus from Aldridge to Cannock now ? The old Harper’s route finishes at Brownhills West now ! I remember being taken on it to get kitted out at Bradbury’s in Brownhills. When did it close ? Mr. Bradbury was a big “chapel man”.
    Geoff. Boulton.

  4. MSC says:

    Jim Gould was my History teacher at Shelfield secondary school . I left in 1961 .He did a lot of work on the Roman Baths dig at Wall . Just after Muckley Corner jct A461 & A5 . Off A5 entrance into Wall village .

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