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North London Fellow Howard Yates has discovered that the RSA holds a letter written by one of his ancestors - thanks to the new Fellows Forum.

North London Fellow Howard Yates has discovered that the RSA holds a letter written by one of his ancestors - thanks to the new Fellows Forum.

As he introduced himself on the Forum, Howard mentioned that his ancestor, William Yates, had won 100 guineas from the Society of Arts in about 1780, for making a map of Lancashire.

Cue Susan Bennett, Hon Sec of the William Shipley Group on RSA History. She posted straight away to clarify that the Society’s “Transactions” showed that William Yates was awarded a Gold Medal.

 The letter

She was able to refer Howard to a paper from the 1960s by JB Harley about William Yates’ work, and shared a picture of the letter of thanks William Yates had written to the Society, which is held in the RSA Archives.

She could even put him in touch with a colleague from the Geological Society who’s currently updating JB Harley’s work for a joint symposium with Susan’s group in November.

Howard Yates commented, “It’s very exciting to see a letter written over 200 years ago by an ancestor!”

All Fellows can join the Fellows Forum: simply register at http://fellowsforum.thersa.org using your Fellowship number. Who knows what connections you might uncover?

 

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