What is a Victorian Turkish bath,
and why does it need a website?

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Victorian Turkish Baths: their origin, development, and gradual decline

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4: What is the information exchange?

The information exchange is designed to provide a simple means by which people who have information can make it available to those who are seeking it. The process is intended to be a two-way co-operative process.

Because so few local histories include any information about Turkish baths, it is hoped that visitors will check the site's Turkish bath directory to discover whether it includes any establishments in their own area and, if so, whether there is any information which is new to them.

They may also know of Turkish baths whose history is well-known in their locality, but which does not yet appear in the directory.

Most of the Turkish baths so far identified have been found in those local directories which have classified sections.

Unfortunately, such lists are by no means complete, and do not always indicate when a bathing establishment included a Turkish bath. Furthermore, the directories of smaller towns were often without classified sections.

So, inevitably, our own directory is incomplete and probably includes errors which can only be corrected easily from local sources of information, and especially by reference to relevant local newspapers. If you know of Turkish bath establishments which have not been included in our directory, please contact us so that your contributions can be added.

Thank you applause iconThose who have visited the site before will recognise our applause icon. This is our way of saying thank you to those who have written or emailed information, or sent us illustrations which have added to the interest of the site. It is especially helpful to hear of published references to Victorian Turkish baths which have been found while pursuing your own research interests.

If you are willing to help by looking at local resources in your own area, please contact us first as we have much information which has not yet appeared on the site and it would be a pity to duplicate research which has already been done. But there are often areas where there are problems which can almost certainly be more easily resolved by those with a good knowledge of locally available resources.

It goes without saying that any information contributed to the databank will be much appreciated and, of course, appropriately credited.

…and an offer of help

The information exchange is also designed so that local historians who may be seeking information about their own locality, a street within that locality, or a person living or working there, can search the Victorian Turkish Bath Project to see whether there is anything relevant to their own interests.

Even if nothing is found in the site itself, it may be worth contacting us in case there is further information which has not been included, eg, we do not normally include the names of all the shareholders, directors, managers, and patrons of an establishment but limit ourselves to indicating just a few of those connected with it.

A growing number of researchers approach us for information and in a number of instances we have been able to help. Questions answered so far include ones dealing with two National Trust properties, The Balloon Society, Little Dorrit, the Jermyn Street Hammam, the opening dates of Turkish baths in London, oriental style baths in the British Isles, and hydropathic establishments in Scotland. We have also been able to help fill in a few gaps in family histories, provide information on the death of a tattooist, indicate the existence of some Victorian wall tiles, find a Turkish bath which could be hired for a 'hen party', and help in dating an advertising ruler—an eclectic range of questions, not all of which have an immediately obvious connection with Victorian Turkish baths.

While immediate answers are not always possible—internet connections are not always available abroad—a serious attempt is made to answer all appropriate questions as soon as possible.

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Victorian Turkish Baths: their origin, development, and gradual decline

 
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Comments and queries are most welcome and can be sent to: 
malcolm@victorianturkishbath.org
 
The right of Malcolm Shifrin to be identified as the author of this work
has been asserted by him in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988