Using the Search Facilities

  • As with Google, the search input will accept multiple words or phrases.
  • Each word or phrase, separated by a space, will be treated as a distinct search term. The records returned will contain all the search terms submitted.
  • Phrases should be enclosed by double or single quotation marks (e.g. "House of Fraser" or 'Army & Navy').
  • The wildcard character * can be used with single terms, but not within phrases. For example, furn* will find 'furniture' and 'furnishings'.
  • The search engine uses a 'stopword' list, meaning small common words are automatically ignored. So the inclusion of small words like 'the', 'be', 'are' and 'and' should be avoided unless they form part of a phrase.
  • Search terms are treated as case insensitive.
  • Words containing accented characters are treated as distinct within the index and the accented character will need to be included in the search input to find the same word in the record.

The House of Fraser archive consists of records in five collections:

Series, companies, people, activities and functions. When viewing the search results, any returned results will be divided into separate collections. Clicking on a collection's tab will reveal the search results for the selected collection.

The search results can be additionally filtered by specifying a date range. It should be pointed out that the relevant date within each record is also expressed as a date range in the majority of cases, so results will be returned whenever the specified date range overlaps with the date range covered by the record. In some cases this can be quite large, a hundred years or more, so these records will tend to be returned even when a smaller date range has been specified. Some of the series records are dated to a single year, and these will also be returned where the record's year falls within a specified range of dates.

The results returned by searches use 'keywords in context' (KWIC) outputting. This displays each search term (highlighted in yellow) surrounded by a short section of text on either side of the term from where it is located in the record. Each KWIC result is grouped by record and there may be several search results per record. Click on the Record ID in the top left of the returned record to view the complete record. The record page also highlights your selected search terms.