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Library loans unique historical items for Gallery Oldham exhibition

by University of Bolton Library on 2023-03-16T15:03:07+00:00 in English and Creative Writing, Special Collections | 0 Comments

The Library has loaned items from its Special Collections to Gallery Oldham for their upcoming exhibition “Finding the Funny” on the local author Sam Fitton.

These include original copies of The Red Rose – a hand written magazine circulated among members of the Lancashire Authors’ Association during the first half of the 20th century. The Red Rose contains correspondence and creative works from LAA members, and includes several poems and cartoons by Sam Fitton.

Original copy of the Sam Fitton poem "The Lark Sings High" in The Red Rose

While born in south Cheshire in 1868, Sam Fitton became synonymous with the industrial cotton districts of Lancashire. Drawing on his experience working in the spinning and weaving industries, Fitton became a noted writer of dialect verse. He was also a prolific cartoonist, playwright and musician – specialising in humorous observations on society and the events of his day.

“These publications are a fantastic snapshot of Lancashire life in the early twentieth century” said the Library’s Tim Leonard. “We are delighted that Gallery Oldham will be showcasing them to the public, highlighting the great resources that we have here at the University”.

Photo of LAA members from The Red Rose

The Library’s Special Collections are home to the Lancashire Authors’ Association Collection, a noted archive relating to the history, traditions and dialect of Lancashire. Students from English and Creative Writing have used books from the LAA Collection in their research for the Victorian Bolton project. Other unique historical collections relating to the textile industry and youth and community work are in development at the Library.

You can visit the Sam Fitton exhibition at Gallery Oldham from the 18th March to the 17th June 2023. For more information see their website at   

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