East Yorkshire Lives

The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography is the national record of people who’ve shaped British history, worldwide, from the Romans to the 21st century. The ODNB currently includes the life stories of 60,000 men and women who died in or before 2016.

Kay Kendall

Of these 60,000 people, more than 70 have close ties to East Yorkshire—through families, education, work or residence.

Here you’ll find some famous (and some less familiar) East Yorkshire faces, including the actress Kay Kendall (above) and (below) the jazz trumpeter Kenny Baker, the film director Ken Annakin, and the designer Charles Voysey. Click on the images below to read more.

William Empson Jane Ellen Harrison William Dodsworth

Charles Voysey John of Bridlington Charles Wilson

Kenny Baker Ken Annakin

Who and how? in East Yorkshire

(NB: You'll need to be logged into your library's subscription for these searches.)

How do I search?

The Oxford DNB includes the life stories of more than 60,000 men and women. Online you can search for where they were born, baptized, lived, died or were buried, by date range or location.

  • The advanced search ‘life event’ feature can be used to find people near you—be they men and women baptised in Edinburgh (189), those born in Whitby (28), or those buried in Exeter (133). Used in this way the ODNB is an excellent resource for school projects or family history.
  • Text searching across the Oxford DNB’s 68 million words, you can also make links between people and places: for example, we’ve 102 references to “Clapham Common”, 27 to the “River Trent”, and 51 to “Snowdonia”.

What else does the Oxford DNB offer?

  • Free biography podcast: as well as 60,000 life stories, the ODNB publishes a twice monthly biography podcast featuring some popular entries from the collection. There are now over 250 episodes in the archive. Recent highlights include Diana, princess of Wales, George Orwell, John Lennon, and Bobby Moore.
  • Follow us on Twitter for more historical figures in the news.

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