The first issue of what was described as “the Official Bulletin of the North Herts Archaeological Society” first appeared in November 1965. This publication continued to be produced at infrequent intervals under the editorship of John Moss-Eccardt and Paul Palmer, and subsequently of Ian Wright until Number 12 in February 1970.
It was superseded by The Hertfordshire Archaeological Review, later to become Hertfordshire’s Past, as a county-wide newsleter. By the early 1980s, though, it was recognised that this more formal publication did “not serve the… important purpose of keeping our own members generally informed about Society news and activities” and it was relaunched under the editorship of Paul Palmer in October 1982. The editorship subsequently passed to Ian Wright, who continued to produce issues up to Number 17 in March 1988. An attempt to re-establish a Society newsletter was made for one issue in 1991 before Mark Stevenson took up the mantle of editor later in the 1990s before passing it on to Gil Burleigh after 2000.
With the rapid development of Information and Communications Technology in the second half of the 1990s, traditional newsletters like The North Herts Antiquary became something of an anomaly. The circulation of information to members of societies can now be done virtually instantaneously through emails and through websites. We have, though, lost a sense of dialogue and the exchange of ideas in this one-way, top-down flow of information. Any good newsletter should reflect the views and interests not just of editors and committees but of the entire membership of societies.
We are gradually making back issues available through this site as PDF documents as part of the fiftieth anniversary of the Society in 2010. Their interest is mainly historical, although some contain important summaries of work carried out by the Society (and in some cases, these are the only accounts yet available). A new series will be launched later in 2010, with a circulation restricted to members for the first eighteen months after publication. Watch this space for details.