Event details

Friday 6 September

11am to 12.30pm

£50 per person, includes parking and admission to the house and garden

The Chatsworth Archive contains many letters, diaries, mementos and artefacts that provide an insight into childhood and parenthood through the ages.

This event, led by our Archive and Library team, offers a rare opportunity to delve into the archive and get up close to some fascinating examples from the Chatsworth collection, including Devonshire family memories captured in photographs, school exercise books and reports, letters penned by and to children, and personal keepsakes.

There are also diaries and accounts of the Penrhos schoolgirls evacuated to Chatsworth during World War II.

You’ll gain insights into the lives of governesses and nannies entrusted with the care of elite families' children, and explore the often poignant childhood letters and diaries that form part of the Chatsworth archive.

Highlights include:

  • A lock of Duchess Georgiana's hair, cut when she was 13-years old
  • A letter written by Duchess Georgiana in her own blood to her 2 year old son (6th Duke) while she was in exile
  • Letters to Duchess Georgiana from her Nanny reporting on the progress of her children
  • An early 17th century exercise book belonging to the future 3rd Earl of Devonshire
  • A journal belonging to Blanche Cavendish, Countess of Burlington, recording the life of her eldest son, Can, who tragically died aged 2 years old (1832-4) and a small painting of him

Meeting Place and Time

Please arrive at the house entrance (North Gates) by 10.50am.


This event takes place in the Chatsworth Library and the Collections Study Room. Unfortunately due to the delicate nature of the historic carpet in the library, it is not suitable for wheelchairs or pushchairs.

Please wear flat shoes with soft soles – you may not be allowed access to the library if wearing block heeled or stiletto shoes. If you have any questions about accessibility please contact education@chatsworth.org.

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With so much to see, do, and explore in the Peak District, it's a shame to only come for the day, so why not stay a little longer? Our country cottages, shepherd's huts, hotels, and inns are the perfect base for exploring all that Chatsworth, Derbyshire, and the Peak District have to offer. Find out more.

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