Courtship

It is an interesting question when you ask a couple how they met. Did they get together through mutual friends, or perhaps through a shared hobby? Maybe they met at university, or bumped into one another in the pub. For younger couples, a dating website may have provided the introduction. I like asking this question…

Why You Should Join a Family History Society

Introduction I recently wrote a post entitled, Top Ten Tips for Tracing Your Ancestors pre-1837. One of my main recommendations was to join a family history society. Some readers may be thinking that family history societies surely belong to an earlier era, when the genealogy landscape was very different. Research then had to be conducted…

Top Ten Tips to Finding your Ancestors pre-1837

(c) Paintings Collection; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation Introduction Even if you have only limited expertise or experience, it is often possible to trace your family history back to the early years of the Victorian period without too much difficulty. Speeding through the records of General Registration and census you can make rapid progress.…

Ancestors who were Deaf

Previously, in Ancestors who were Blind, I looked at how our blind ancestors might have lived with their disability, specifically looking at the life of my husband's ancestor, Hannah Lilian Woodcock. In this article, I will be looking at ancestors who were deaf, illustrated by the life of my deaf relative, Maria Batchelor (1827-1903). At…

Ancestors who were Blind

Some members of your family tree may be fairly anonymous to you because you haven't really researched their lives, even though you know something significant about them. For example, in my family tree I have two female relatives, Hannah and Maria, who had disabilities. Hannah was blind and Maria was deaf, probably both from early…

The Pair of Boots

You never know when a secret, long buried in the past, will come to light. As a result of the indexing of record sources, you can stumble across information about an ancestor that you would never have looked for ordinarily. This happened to me one day when a new, tantalising, green leaf on Ancestry appeared…

A Noble Legacy

On the broad plateau of the chalk downs of North Wiltshire, you will find the handsome church of All Saints, Yatesbury. Yatesbury, a tiny village of around 150 souls today, lies just north of the current A4 road that runs between Calne and Marlborough. If you decide to pay a visit, and wonder through the…

Special Relationships

When you consider the most important relationships in your life, no doubt some of your closest friends come to mind, perhaps even a certain best friend. It's ironic then that as family historians, we may know all about an ancestor's cousins, (some of whom they perhaps never met, or didn't get on with at all),…

Who was Thomas?

After getting over the shock of discovering that his family had emigrated to America in 1849, leaving him behind, [see Left Behind], my quest to discover the identity of George Thomas Powell continued. I had solved the mystery concerning the apparent disappearance of his parents, (William) Benjamin and Mary Powell, but that still didn't change…