Sam's Blog


Date Posted: 15/05/2012

I have just re-discovered some great snaps from the filming of Channel4’s feature-length documentary Shackleton. The photographs are taken in the Denmark Strait a narrow body of water between Iceland and Greenland. The sequence of .... Read More

Daily Telegraph ‘Historic Dinner Party’

Date Posted: 09/05/2012

This is the link to my dinner party piece for the Daily Telegraph – in which I was allowed to invite six guests from the entirety of history. Hmmmm. Tricky. In fact it becomes significantly more tricky the more that you think about it. Rather disappointingly they .... Read More

NBC America’s ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’

Date Posted: 07/04/2012

I always think that people who dig really deep into their family history – and I am not talking just a few generations here – are brave. I am not sure that I have it in me. I also enjoy the unresolved feeling of potential. There are vague rumors in our family of .... Read More

BBC History, Tower of London Lecture

Date Posted: 09/03/2012

Come and share an evening at the Tower of London with myself and Saul David as we discuss whether the army or the navy contributed most to Britain’s rise to global pre-eminence. See here for more details and how to book tickets Read More

On Point Radio (American National Public Radio) and Shipwrecks

Date Posted: 20/01/2012

I will be talking about shipwrecks on On Point Radio today from 4-5pm, broadcast from Boston. We will be talking about captains, and their responsibilities…those who chose to stay and those who chose to run. And how can we interpret the wreck .... Read More

NBC America’s ‘Who Do You Think You Are’

Date Posted: 08/01/2012

Exciting stuff! I have just agreed to do some work for Season Three of NBC’s ‘Who Do You Think You Are’, an adaptation of the award-winning hit British television documentary series that leads celebrities on a journey of self-discovery as they unearth their .... Read More

Academy Excellence Awards

Date Posted: 21/12/2011

I am delighted to announce that I have been asked to judge the history entries for this year’s 2012 Academy Excellence Awards. You can find out more about this super initiative here:  and follow on facebook .... Read More

The Kraaken, Giant Sea Worms and a Whirlpool

Date Posted: 22/11/2011

I have just found the following description by the Royal Naval Officer Captain Charles Douglas (the future Rear Admiral) of his search for sea monsters and whirlpools off the coast of Lapland in 1769.This comes from a paper he gave at the Royal Society – after which he .... Read More

A hidden pattern?

Date Posted: 08/11/2011

I was doing some work on Jutland this morning when I realised that it was fought on the 122 anniversary of the Glorious First of June (1794) and also on the 250th anniversary of the start of the Four Days Battle of 1666. And then it became clear that a really surprising .... Read More

Britain’s Oldest Naval Sword

Date Posted: 30/10/2011

Something rather exciting entirely slipped my mind until last night when I woke up in the middle of the night and remembered that, last week, in a quiet house in a leafy Wimbledon avenue, I enjoyed the privilege of wielding (yes wielding) Britain’s oldest known naval .... Read More