Research can be a bit of a hydra — you think you’ve found an answer and it leads to more questions. This was the case for Queer Kernow when we were working to uncover queer criminalisation in Cornwall during the 19th Century. We received a grant from the Cornwall Heritage Trust to visit the National Archives in Kew to explore more of the documents that are kept outside of Cornwall.
It was here that we were able to delve into the story of Ernst Oke and William Davey and their case in 1888 for ‘gross indecency’ after being caught together at the army barracks in Bodmin. To read more about our research into queer criminalisation in Cornwall visit our page on the History blog about them.