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May 22 16

Review: Tracing Your Edinburgh Ancestors

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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Tracing Your Edinburgh AncestorsIf you have Scottish ancestry and begin to trace your family history from that country, then you will rapidly discover that it is quite different in many ways from tracing your forebears elsewhere.

Some years back I began to look into a side of my family that was from Scotland, although at the time I had no idea which part they came from. Quickly, I found, some of their roots were in Midlothian and also in the City of Edinburgh where they appeared to be merchants.

Following them further back in time I found that they were descendants of the lairds of Hope, an estate in the hills to the south of Edinburgh. To my delight, I found the first laird of Hopes marriage in the Scotlandspeople records for Kirk of Halyroodhous (sic), Edinburgh in 4 August 1664. I then discovered a privately published book about the family in the Society of Genealogists Library in London and this gave me a line of ancestors to follow on a visit to Scotland.

 

As I have been thinking about doing more research on this branch of the family I was, therefore, very happy to recently get my hands on the book by Alan Stewart called Tracing Your Edinburgh Ancestors published by Pen & Sword.

I learnt a huge amount about the local history of Edinburgh from this book, as well as discovering where to look for records pertaining to the City and its villages. Alan Stewart combines a great deal of the ancient history of the area as well as modern historical information and the all important genealogical data and where to look for it.

Part one of the book explains the history of Edinburgh from the volcanic activity, that is responsible for its geography, through the Ice Age and the Romans to the setting out of the Old Town and the New Town. From reading this book I now understand the way Edinburgh spread and how it incorporated Leith and the surrounding villages into its borders.

Edinburgh

By Ronnie Macdonald from Chelmsford, United Kingdom (Edinburgh Old Town 2) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

From the second part of the book I was able to build my understanding of the family history records, that can be used to trace ancestors from the area. The explanations of the differences in them, when compared to their English and Welsh counterparts, clarified a great deal for me. Out of the chapters, in part two, I would just like to highlight how useful I found the sections on wills and inheritance records, to make sense of my own research into my Edinburgh folk. Now I understand what a Sasine record was. I had previously seen mentioned, in the privately published family history book I had found in the Society of Genealogist Library, that one of my ancestors, Edmund Hay of Hopes, obtained his lands in 1653 from his father according to a sasine dated that year. Alan Stewart’s book has made it clear what this is and that they have been digitised and are available to view on “virtual volumes” at the National Records of Scotland.

Tracing Your Edinburgh Ancestors by Alan Stewart has much more to recommend it to the researcher of Edinburgh family. It is available as a paperback, a kindle book or an ePub book

Tracing Your Edinburgh Ancestors Tracing Your Edinburgh Ancestors Tracing Your Edinburgh Ancestors
Buy Paperback Buy Kindle Buy ePub book

 

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May 15 16

How Many People Are You Actually Related To?

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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Family tree as a wheel

 

A guest article this week as I found this fascinating…

How Many People Are You Actually Related To?
By Connor Kehl

Most people think of a Family Tree like a triangle. It starts with you and then branches out downward from there, starting with your children and then your grandchildren, and so on. The lesser looked at side is the other direction. Starting from you and moving up. This makes an upside down triangle. There’s you, then your two parents above you, then each of their two parents above them, and so forth. As you keep moving up a generation the number of ancestors, or the number of people it took to create you, doubles. If you know anything about exponential growth, you will realize this number can get very large very quickly.

If you were to go back seven generations (your great-great-great-great-great grandparents) you would have 128 ancestors. This generation would have been in their 20’s in approximately 1800-1825, which means if you traveled to the year 1820 there would be 128 people walking around all making up an equal 1/128th of who you will become in 200 years.

Now let’s go back 12 generations. You would have to say “great” 10 times before saying “grandparents”. These people would be in their 20’s, in about the second half of the 1600’s, and again if you traveled to that time, there would be 4,096 people that make up who you are.

Now if you continue to double your ancestors, eventually you will surpass the world population, which obviously isn’t possible. This is why there is a widest part of your family tree. This part of your family tree happens in about the year 1200, where you are related to almost the entire world population. This means that everyone alive today has many common ancestors from that time.

If you continue to go backwards your family tree begins to get smaller. The reason for this is because hundreds of years ago people didn’t tend to meet as many people in their lives. Transportation wasn’t what it is today and big cities weren’t a thing, so the people in the small village you lived in tended to be your only contact. This would mean that someone could have two ancestors that were very closely related to them. For instance, if two cousins got married (which was far more common back then because of the proximity issue) than their child would only have 6 great-grandparents, instead of 8.

So if you think about it, if you are a descendant from that many people, odds are somewhere up your family tree is a king or queen or someone really cool and important. If anyone tries to brag to you that they are somehow related to King Henry VIII or something, you can just tell them that you probably are too. He just might be your 19th cousin or something ridiculous like that.

If you like this article, want to read more articles like this, want to learn some interesting things, or just like random facts, check out Connor’s website – http://www.possiblyusefulinfo.com

Or his favourite/favorite page: http://www.possiblyusefulinfo.com/interesting-things.html

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Connor_Kehl/2157335
http://EzineArticles.com/?How-Many-People-Are-You-Actually-Related-To?&id=9108290

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Find your elusive ancestors in the online and offline records. Discover where to look and what records sets to use in the English/Welsh family history course from The Family History Researcher Academy.

You can take advantage of a Special Offer Trial of just £1 for a month!

You’ll receive 4 modules plus bonus content by going to: http://www.familyhistoryresearcher.com/trialoffer/

 

OR to pay in US dollars simply Click this link:

http://www.familyhistoryresearcher.com/specialoffer

(Normal monthly subscription: £9.95 per month(or $14.00). Course length: 52 weekly downloadable tutorials to do at your own pace. You are free to cancel at any time.)

One month trial of the Family History Researcher Academy English/Welsh course

Click the Image to take a trial for only £1

May 8 16

English/Welsh Family History Course

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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The Family History Researcher Academy revises its popular course to celebrate its 3rd birthday!

Family History Researcher AcademyBack in May 2013 Nick Thorne launched his English/Welsh family history course online to help people with ancestors from this part of the world find their family in the records.

He saw that many family history researchers would benefit from a set of accessible guides.

Tutorials that would show the student how to master the many record collections and the various resources that are out there.

With the extra knowledge gained, from this course, many could easily discover their English/Welsh ancestors, both on and offline.

English/Welsh family history course on tablet computer

Nick, has researched family trees for private clients, worked on various projects for one of the leading British genealogical research websites, and is also a regular writer in Discover Your Ancestors Bookazine and its sister monthly online periodical. He writes case-study articles, published in several of the monthly British family history magazines, which reveal the best way to make the most of the records sets on a top data subscription site.

 

His English/Welsh Family History course has had tremendous feedback, from those who bought the training consisting of 52 weekly lessons that are delivered by email for the students to complete at their own pace. The modules explore the different resources, data sets and documents that reveal more about English or Welsh ancestry and allow the reader to become a much better informed researcher. Written from a practical point of view, with various lessons contributed by professional genealogists, online data experts and by Nick himself, it has been revised for 2016.

 

The English/Welsh Family History course has had tremendous feedback

 

Nick Thorne said: “Three years ago I took much of the knowledge that I myself had learned and began writing tutorials to help others. I soon found that people were very appreciative and eager to discover more and so the Family History Researcher Academy course was born.

The tutorials help you to understand where to look for records and introduce you to the collections or archives that you may have overlooked.”

Examples of unsolicited testimonials received and reproduced with the senders permission:

I am finding the course very useful, even though I have being doing family history for many years.” Kind regards, H.Stephens.

I would like to thank you for the resources, which I have received weekly, they are very interesting and informative, also a big thank you for the brilliant customer service .” P.Beilby.

Hi Nick. Thank you very much for this series. I have learnt such a lot and it has increased my knowledge considerably.” A.Vallis.

The lessons are very good and I would recommend them to anyone” M.Lynn.

You communicate in an understandable way! Just wanted to thank you for the 52 very interesting lessons. I have them all indexed and saved and will refer back on a regular basis. I very much enjoyed the snippets of social history around the subject, this is so important when doing your own history.” P.Martin.

 

Topics covered in the 12 months include:

  • The census collections

  • The Parish records

  • The Parish Chest

  • Dade Registers

  • County Record offices and the valuable treasures they contain

  • Nonconformist

  • Religious records

  • Clandestine marriages

  • City and Town Directories

  • Census substitutes

  • Apprentices

  • Professionals

  • Army

  • Royal Navy

  • RAF

  • Merchant Navy

  • Illegitimacy

  • The Workhouse

  • Poor Law

  • Death records

  • Burial

  • Wills

  • Rural ancestors

  • Bankrupts

  • Black sheep

  • Genetics and DNA

  • Occupations

  • Maps and Charts

  • The National Archives

  • Other depositories

  • Family Search Centres

  • Passports

  • Manorial records

  • Newspapers

  • and more!

 

The Family History Researcher Academy is offering a Special Offer Trial of just £1 for a month.

Receive 4 modules plus bonus content by going to: http://www.familyhistoryresearcher.com/trialoffer/

(Normal monthly subscription: £9.95 per month. Course length: 52 weekly downloadable tutorials to do at your own pace. You are free to cancel at any time.)

 

One month trial of the Family History Researcher Academy English/Welsh course

                             Click the Image to take a trial for only £1

 

Or if you wish to pay in US dollars then I am currently offering a $1 trail for a month, consisting of four lessons, and then $14 a month for as long as you wish to remain, or until I’ve sent you lesson 52 (which ever is the sooner).

To pay in U.S. Dollars: http://www.familyhistoryresearcher.com/specialoffer/

FamilyHistoryResearcher.com

Click the Image to take a trial for only US$1

May 1 16

Introduction to the Parish Records of England and Wales

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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Family History Researcher English/Welsh course

Parish Records

I was trying to explain, over the phone to a friend this weekend, what parish records were.

My friend’s understanding of family history was more or less at the beginners stage and so I found myself explaining how the parish is the smallest local administrative area in England and Wales even today.

In modern times a parish council looks after a civil parish that can range in size from a large town with a population of around 80,000 to a single village with fewer than a hundred inhabitants and is not connected to the church parish at all.

As confusion between this civil administration and the church parish had, by now, crept into our conversation I had to point there was a difference. The modern parish council was distinct from a parochial church council, which is the executive committee of a Church of England parish. This parochial church council had come out of the old parish vestry committee, which it had replaced in 1921.

Having got those two clear in his mind I then muddied the waters when I explained that this hasn’t always been the case and that at one time the church parish was also the arm of local government!

It is believed that parishes have been in existence from Saxon times (9th century) when they grew up around the Minsters.

For family historians the three most important records, at a parish level, are normally referred to collectively as the Parish Registers. They contain the names of our ancestors’ Baptismal records, Marriage records and their Burials. In England and Wales the parish register system, administered by the Church of England, had been in operation since 1538 and the reign of Henry VIII.

Nelson's birth in Church Register

Older registers will have been written in Latin and so we may need to be able to translate that language. There are various tools on the internet that may help, not the least of which is Google’s translation tool.

Even those later records, which are written in English, can vary tremendously in their readability and the amount, or lack of, information that they provide.

Sadly for family historians, many older parish records have not survived through time and so we cant expect to find full records for each parish that we are researching back to 1538.

With that proviso in place – a surprising number of parish records have endured.

Once a parish register is full it will normally find its way to be housed at the local Diocesan Office (often the County Record Office, but beware when a diocese covers more than one county). To avoid too much wear and tear, on these valuable old books, most have been microfilmed and can be viewed in the record office on microfilm readers and some have made it online at the large subscription sites.

If you want to learn more then I explain more about parish records in a lesson within the Family History Researcher course.

Many people will be aware of the Parish Registers and how useful they are, but not so many of us would be able to name all of the lesser used Parish records that would have found a place within the parish chest in our ancient parish churches.

Here are some other records that could be in the parish chest records for your ancestor’s parish and which I regaled my friend with in our telephone call:

  • The Churchwardens Accounts

  • Glebe Terriers and Tithe Records

  • Charity Accounts (possibly not of a great deal of use to family historians!)

  • Vestry Minutes

  • Petty Constables Accounts

  • Rate Books

  • Various other miscellaneous records

I had to stress to my friend that it is by no means certain that these documents will have survived the ravages of time, but that if they have then the originals should now be stored away safely at the relevant County Record Office for the church in question.

Cheekily, I suggested that he take out a subscription to my 52 weekly tutorial Family History Researcher Course to learn more – especially as he could have the first month for £1 (normal monthly subscription is £9.95 thereafter for the next 11 months. Cancel at any time, no questions asked and no hoops to jump through).

To pay in sterling: http://www.familyhistoryresearcher.com/trialoffer/

FamilyHistoryResearcher.com

I think he thought this was me offering “mates rates”, but actually it is my current offer to everyone. If you wish to pay in US dollars then I am currently offering a $1 trail for a month, consisting of four lessons, and then $14 a month for as long as you wish to remain, or until I’ve sent you lesson 52 which ever is the sooner.

To pay in U.S. Dollars: http://www.familyhistoryresearcher.com/specialoffer/

FamilyHistoryResearcher.com

.

Apr 24 16

New Tool to Trace people on TNA’s Discovery Search Engine

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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The National Archives at Kew

The National Archives at Kew

I don’t know if you have seen this? The National Archives have added a new tool onto their Discovery search.

As they say on their blog, since February 2014, they’ve been investigating methods for linking people who appear in their records, to start revealing the connections that tell the real stories of people’s lives.

Two years later the project that they have called, Traces through Time, is at the point where users of the Discovery catalogue can benefit from these efforts.

 

The blog goes on to say: “If, in the last few days, you’ve been researching a person who served in the First World War there’s a chance you’ve noticed our new feature: a section reading ‘other possible matches’. This feature went live just a few days ago at the end of March. If you have already come across it, we hope you liked it.”

 

Screenshot of the new ‘other possible matches’ feature

Screenshot of the new ‘other possible matches’ feature

 

TNA point out that many of us will have made links like this on Discovery while researching our family history. As they say it is relatively easy for us humans to make a decision whether two records relate to the same individual that we have found in the returns from a search on Discovery. People can make a judgement based on the information presented to them. For example if the date of birth is very close for an individual, or if we are lucky enough to be searching for someone with an unusual middle name and spot this in the mix of results.

Naturally the blog raises the question that many of the readers will be asking. Just how can TNA ‘teach’ a computer to make these very human judgements?

Their answer is that their data scientists and statistical experts have identified ways of linking names across records, with the added value of a confidence rating.

Take a look at their blog post Making Connections: tracing people through our collection here.

 

Apr 21 16

Tithe Records and Researching and Locating your Ancestors

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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Or watch on YouTube here.

At the recent Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2016 Nick Thorne spoke to the professional genealogist, author and teacher, Celia Heritage about tithe records for England and Wales and how useful they are for finding your mid-nineteenth century ancestors. If you are trying to flesh out your family tree with forebears from all levels of society at this time then these records are a wonderful resource. While you can see the maps and schedules in record offices up and down the country there is an easier way. It is to search the schedules and maps in the only online national collection at TheGenealogist (requires a Diamond subscription).

Celia Heritage gives a genealogy tutorial on TheGenealogist stand

 

Celia Heritage is the author of a number of family history books including Researching and Locating your Ancestors published by Discover Your Ancestors Publishing.  £9.95 ISBN 978 1 911166 00 9

Researching-and-Locating-Your-Ancestors-by-Celia-Heritage

 

 

 

Compensated affiliate links used above: http://paidforadvertising.co.uk/

Apr 18 16

Laura Berry’s new book Discover Your Ancestors’ Occupations

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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Professional Genealogist Laura Berry

Professional Genealogist Laura Berry.

At the recent family history show, Who Do You Think You Are? Live, I was fortunate enough to be able to catch some of the presentation that Laura Berry gave. As a leading television genealogy researcher she had some great insights to give her audience from her experience with celebrity family trees and how you could use the techniques to find your own ancestors.

Later that day I caught up with Laura on the Discover Your Ancestors stand where she was signing her book:

Discover Your Ancestors’ Occupations.

The publication is aimed at family historians who are intrigued about their ancestor’s work life. It is often among the first details that we learn about an individual from the civil registration certificates and census records and from it we may make assumptions about a person’s social standing, community, financial situation and even their health.

Laura Berry’s book is well written with lots of examples and links to websites. Chapters cover agricultural forebears, Craftsmen, Tradesmen & Merchants; Industry; Professionals; Profit & Loss; Entertainers and going further.

What is the chapter on Profit & Loss about? In that chapter Laura casts her expert eye over collections of records that chart the peaks and troughs in an ancestor’s career whether they were tradespeople, craftsmen and women, in business, mariners, military or labourers.

 

Discover Your Ancestors’ Occupations by Laura Berry
published by Discover Your Ancestors Publishing. ISBN 978 1 911166 02 3 £9.95

Available from www.discoveryourancestors.co.uk

 

Laura Berry’s website is: http://www.lauraberry.co.uk/

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Check out my video interview with Laura Berry:

Or view it on YouTube here.

 

 

Compensated affiliate links used above: http://paidforadvertising.co.uk/

Apr 17 16

If you have a family story to tell then have a book written.

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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At the Who Do You Think You Are? Live show last week I was introduced to a great service from Story Terrace for people who are researching their family history. Story Terrace will take your family story and match you with a writer who will then work with you to make a fabulous hard back book. If you want to add to your family tree a book that includes the stories that you have found in your research, then this may be for you!

As they explained, life is worth writing down as we all have moments that we don’t want to forget. Perhaps it is our childhood memories, our ancestors lives or simply those stories that our parents and grandparents have to tell. Story terrace offers a complete service that allows you to preserve your stories in a beautiful book. They offer to pair you with one of their professional ghost-writers so that together you can create a one-of-a-kind biography.

Check out their website at: www.StoryTerrace.com

 

story terrace

Apr 16 16

Discover Your Ancestors at Who Do You Think You Are? Live

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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Or watch the video on YouTube

While at the NEC for the Who Do You Think You Are? Live show I managed to catch up with Andrew Chapman the editor of the Discover Your Ancestors Bookazines and online periodicals.

Some readers of the publications may have noticed that I am now a regular writer for Discover Your Ancestors, so I make no apology for this being the first of my video interviews from a great three days in Brum!

Read my article in this month’s Discover Your Ancestors periodical on the highest ranking British officer held by the Germans and found in the new online German prisoner of war records released by TheGenealogist .

Purchase a subscription here:

Discover Your Ancestors is a high quality, content rich monthly digital magazine for £1 a month.

Compensated affiliate links used above: http://paidforadvertising.co.uk/

Apr 14 16

Unique Records released by TheGenealogist at WDYTYA? LIVE

by Nick Thorne, The Nosey Genealogist
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TheGenealogist launched 4 unique record sets at the recent Who Do You Think you Are? Live

TheGenealogist team have added some new records to their site that will be of interest to those doing family tree research in Essex, Worcestershire, Surrey and Westmorland.

  • The latest release adds over one million new parish records.
  • New Colour Tithe Maps for Surrey in partnership with Surrey History Center
  • New Colour Tithe Maps for Westmorland in partnership with The National Archives

 

Parish Records

With over 2.5 million Essex Parish Records their latest release makes TheGenealogist the place to go for Essex Research.

Essex Parish Records

Essex Parish Records

The launch of 900,000 new Essex Parish Records transcripts brings the total coverage for that county to over 2.5 million individuals. Spanning the period from 1512 to 2005

These records with our BMDs and Census allow family historians to research ancestors from this eastern part of England with ease.

Also released are over 158,000 Worcestershire Parish Records, bringing Worcestershire’s coverage to over 2 million individuals

Colour Tithe Maps

TheGenealogist.co.uk in conjunction with the Surrey History Centre, has launched the Surrey Colour Tithe Maps.

Westmorland Colour Tithe Maps are published in partnership with The National Archives and is just one of the many counties to be conserved and digitised by TheGenealogist.

Parish of Farnham

Farnham Tithe Map

Many more will be published in the forthcoming months.

 

These releases bring the addition of wonderfully detailed colour tithe maps to complement the online collection of tithe schedules and greyscale maps that have already been so well received by family historians researching where their ancestors lived.

This rich store of land occupation and usage records were created in a massive survey of England and Wales from between 1836 and the early 1850s.

In these early years of the Victorian period, at a time when people were moving from the countryside to the towns, many of the urban areas that we see today as part of cities and towns can be found mapped out as tithable plots. This includes some parts of London and other big cities where cottages and gardens are plotted in the same way as fields and woods are in the countryside.

 

These records are made available online by TheGenealogist in a partnership with The National Archives and several County Record Offices.

 Brief History of Tithes

Tithes were an amount of produce given to the church, originally a tenth, then finally it became a tax on the income from the land. This was paid to the Church of England and to some lay people who owned the rights that had previously been due to the dissolved monasteries. In 1866 the majority of England and Wales was still paying what the government recognised was a discredited tax. Before they could legislate, however, they first had to collect details of what people paid – and so all the owners and occupiers of land subject to tithes were recorded and thus this fantastic resource was created.

To check out these new records head over to www.thegenealogist.co.uk

 

To search for your ancestor’s wills and countless other useful records take a look at TheGenealogist now.

The Genealogist - UK census, BMDs and more online

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