'The Blackcountryman' is the society's quarterly magazine. In the 200+ issues published in the past 50 years there have been over 2700 authoritative articles on all aspects of the Black Country by historians, researchers, teachers, students, subject experts and folk with an extraordinary tale to tell.
In addition, some 500 books written during that period on Black Country subjects have been reviewed in the magazine. Books continue to be written and reviewed in the magazine.
The whole 50-volume collection constitutes a unique resource for teachers, students, researches and anyone with a general interest in the Black Country. Several local libraries have complete sets and an index available for reference.
Around 2000 magazines are printed each quarter, each Society member has a copy delivered and there are sales outlets throughout the Black Country. We also publish an electronic version of the magazine, also on subscription. This should appeal to overseas (non-European) members and hopefully those who are partially sighted.
The magazine is non-commercial and nobody receives payment for their articles. This publication is the most important of the Black Country Society.
The 'contents' page of each 96-page A5 magazine lists some 20+ items including details of the programmes of all affiliated groups, often with a profile of a Black Country Personality, around 10 substantial articles, several lighter ones, humour, occasional poetry, correspondence, news and book reviews.
Two national history publications have named 'The Blackcountryman' as a leading magazine in the field of local history.
From 1968 until 1988 the late Harold Parsons was the editor. His 'Portrait of the Black Country', was published (Robert Hale, London 1986) and went to a reprint and a re-issue in paperback form; it was widely recognised as the standard general book on The Black Country.
Stan Hill, Editor from 1988 until October 2001 spent 40 years in the education service, the last 20 of which he was warden of Dudley Teachers' Centre at Himley Hall, where he was involved with teams of teachers introducing local studies in schools.
David Cox then took over as Editor, who has recently completed a PhD in Criminal Justice History after gaining an MA in History from the Open University. David's last issue was the 150th (Summer 2005).
The current Editor, Michael Pearson is a retired Police Officer and holds a BaHons in Criminal Justice and Policing. He also administers the society website. You will notice that enhanced articles from the magazine will appear on the website and the link between web and paper products will become closer.
The Blackcountryman is delivered free to members and is also available from local outlets, or by post for £3.80 (including UK postage + packaging).
Back issues are available by emailing the Editor (see foot of page). Issues from volume 21 upwards are available in paper form, these cost £3.80 per issue including UK post and package. There is a 30p surcharge if you wish to pay via Paypal (email for details of how to pay). There is a discount if you purchase more than one magazine.
If you wish to pay by cheque, please make it payable to 'The Black Country Society' and send it to:
The first 20 years of magazines are now only available electronically; the most cost-effective way of purchasing is to buy the CD-ROM of volumes 1-10 (40 magazines on one CD) or the DVD of volumes 11-20 (another 40 issues on one disk). Work is currently being undertaken to digitise volumes 21-30 of The Blackcountryman.
The digital versions have been created for those who want to start an electronic collection and/or save on bookcase space. Please go to the publications page for purchase details.