HIST (the Historian's Interactive Statistical Toolkit) provides an introduction to quantitative analysis and is designed to assist users who require an insight into the application of statistics in history or related disciplines. It is not a statistical package; it is a CAL (computer-aided learning) package which is intended to facilitate use of quantitative methods which can include statistical routines in spreadsheets, database management systems and specialist statistical packages.

HIST was designed by Peter Wardley of UWE.

HIST can be accessed through Windows Explorer by double-clicking on the application file in the HIST folder of the Resources section of the CD-ROM. Access can be simplified by copying the files to your hard disk and placing a shortcut to the software on your desktop.


Hot Spots and pop up windows

Many articles contain hotspots in the form of emboldened and underlined text. When you click on the text a new browser window appears in front of the main text giving new information or showing illustrations. Ensure that you close each window. If, instead, you click back on the main window the hotspot window will disappear behind it and you will not be able to open a new window until you have closed the first one. To do this minimise the main window to show the window behind and close it by clicking on the x in the top right hand corner.



Some articles contain the following icons to assist with accessing additional information or images.

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Idealist is a database management system which is capable of handling large text fields. It has been used to compile a number of the datasets on this CD-ROM, and read-only version of the software is included in zipped files with each of the Datasets in the 'Idealist' folder within the 'Dataset's folder of the Resources file.
NOTE: Idealist is PC only and will not run on a MAC system.

For a brief description of the possibilities of Idealist for the historian, see Spencer Jordan's article "Idealist for Windows 3.0" in History and Computing, Volume 7 (1995), pp. 156-160

Idealist was formerly owned by Blackwell Scientific Ltd who issued the licence which has enabled its use here. The software is now the property of Bekon Marketing Ltd who can be contacted at


Microsoft Excel

Most of the datasets on this CD-ROM are presented as Microsoft Excel spreadsheet files. If you do not have this software you can download a copy of the Microsoft Excel Viewer free from Microsoft's website at


Microsoft Word

A number of files in the Resources section of this CD-ROM are in Microsoft Word format. If you do not have this software you can download a copy of the Microsoft Word Viewer free from Microsoft's website at



To be able to view the QuickTime movies in the Introduction and the Bristol Records Office article you will need to have the QuickTime plug in installed in your browser and have a minimum of 64MB of RAM. The plug in is available from