Picture of the GRO in Southport

Using BMD indices for England and Wales

Process, Records

I've been doing some research over the past few months that makes extensive use of the new indices recently published by the GRO of their birth and death registers for England and Wales. There are techniques available now that were not available without them.

27 Sep 2017
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 A postcard view of the British ocean liner "RMS Andania" of the Cunard Line

Wrights across the Pond

Wright, Records

One of the pleasures of revisiting my family history research is taking the time to fill in details I previously skipped over, either because I didn't know enough to do the research competently or the relevant records weren't available online and I couldn't/can't visit the archives in the USA...

16 Jan 2017
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Promotional still from the 1938 film The Lady Vanishes,

The Lady Vanishes

Process, Records, Wright

Anyone who has been researching their family history for any length of time will recognise the problem: you find a woman in a census with her parents but after that she falls completely out of sight.  In England and Wales, I find it a particular challenge for women born in the last part of the...

2 Nov 2016
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Image of trees

Why online trees are useful; or Which Margaret Ellen Roberts?

Records, Roberts

I'm a firm believer in putting the complete results of my research online, and hope that others will do the same.  This is one reason why: finding my maternal grandmother's birth was not straightforward, and took nearly 9 years. And it was an online tree that provided the final piece of evidence...

3 Oct 2016
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image: drawing board

Back to the drawing board

Records, Mistakes, Jones

Reviewing and redocumenting my family history efforts to date has thrown up a few extra tidbits of information but no major errors... until today.  

I was preparing to enter the death certificate for my grandfather Thomas Jones (mentioned...

28 Sep 2016
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Finding a needle in a haystack

Records, Jones

I've been blessed with very common surnames in my family — my grandparents were named Wright and Brookes and Jones and Roberts. But the most challenging recent line so far is my maternal grandfather's: he was Tom Jones son of Thomas Jones son of Thomas Jones, and all born or living (yes, you've...

27 Sep 2016
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Shakespeare's will

Take any will with a pinch of salt


I've just been reviewing my mother's will and have been given a salutory reminder that any historical will that I find may be a very misleading document!

My mother's circumstances changed drastically between making her will in 1979 and dying in 1987, with the result that none...

2 Sep 2016
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