Wednesday, 30 October 2013

1921 Canadian census now searchable on Ancestry

The 1921 census for Canada is now fully searchable online at Ancestry (www.ancestry.co.uk) via its Worldwide subscription.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Remembering 1916 conference

From PRONI (www.proni.gov.uk):

Remembering 1916: Challenges for Today
Monday 25th November 9.00 to 1.30pm in the MAC, Theatre Upstairs, 10 Exchange Street West, Belfast BT1 2NJ

The half day conference will focus on how we remember the critical events of the Easter Rising, the Battle of the Somme and the First World War which have shaped national identities in Britain, Ireland, and Northern Ireland. Web link http://www.community-relations.org.uk/fs/doc/decade-miscellaneous/1916_Conference_notification.pdf
The conference will be chaired by William Crawley broadcaster and commentator. The speakers will place these events in their historical contexts and in the broader contexts of Britain and Ireland, and consider the challenges they pose today.

How the commemoration of these events has contributed to the formation of national identities will be explored in the context of Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland. Specifically speakers will examine how we change our views on remembering by exploring how the Easter Rising was commemorated in 1966 and how the commemoration of the First World War has changed over time. There will be opportunities through question and answer sessions to explore how open we are now to remembering these critical events in the present changed contexts. Finally the conference will consider how in the light of recent developments in commemoration between Britain and Ireland, the challenge of contemporary commemoration.

The conference is being organised by the Community Relations Council and Heritage Lottery Fund as part of their joint work in exploring the decade of anniversaries in the context of the principles for remembering in public space. It is aimed at those involved in policy development, those influencing, planning and/ or organising events and programmes in relation to the decade of anniversaries, culture and heritage and community organisations, media, representatives from the political spheres and academic life interested in identity and in how events are remembered in contested or post conflict societies.

There is no cost for the conference but early booking is recommended. The finalised programme will be circulated in advance of the conference. In order to book a place, please return the attached by 13th November giving, name, organisation and contact details to tgibson@nicrc.org.uk
Once your booking is confirmed you will receive an email to this effect.

(With thanks to Gavin McMahon)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

FindmyPast digitising English and Welsh school registers

The UK FindmyPast site (www.findmypast.co.uk) has announced that it has started work on a two year project to digitise over a million English and Welsh school registers from 1870-1914, including the records of many Industrial Schools in that period. The project is being carried out in partnership with the Archives and Records Association.

The full story is at http://blog.findmypast.co.uk/2013/10/millions-of-school-records-to-be-published-online-for-the-first-time/

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Welsh WW1 National Book of Remembrance to be digitised

The Welsh National Book of Remembrance for the First World War is to be digitised, whilst Cardiff's Temple of Peace, where the book is held, is to be improved, thanks to a £1 million funding package from the Heritage Lottery Fund. 48 war memorials are also to be revived in Powys in a separate funding package.

For the full story on these and other Welsh HLF projects linked to the First World War, visit www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/wales-national-book-remembrance-first-6245397

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

ScotlandsPeople at 50+ show in Glasgow

ScotlandsPeople (www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk) will be present at The 50+ show in Glasgow's SECC from 7th-9th November 2013, offering free advice to those seeking help with ancestral research. From the ScotlandsPeople website:

"...if you register on the 50+ website before Thursday 7 November, you can gain free admission to the show (thereby saving yourself a tenner). Registration is free and only takes a minute or so - just click the registration link in the top right corner of the 50+ homepage to reach the registration page."

The event is open to people of any age, not just those over 50. Further details about the show are at http://www.50plusshow.com/glasgow/glasgow.htm

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Progress on Great Parchment Book site

All of the original images for The Great Parchment Book, as well as enhanced images for two thirds of the content, have now been added to the project website at www.greatparchmentbook.org. From the site:

The Great Parchment Book of the Honourable The Irish Society is a major survey, compiled in 1639 by a Commission instituted under the Great Seal by Charles I, of all those estates in Derry managed by the City of London through the Irish Society and the City of London livery companies. It represents a hugely important source for the City of London’s role in the Protestant colonisation and administration of Ulster. Damaged as the result of a fire at Guildhall in 1786, it has been unavailable to researchers for over 200 years. However, the manuscript has remained part of the City of London’s collections held at London Metropolitan Archives (LMA reference CLA/049/EM/02/018.)

The project update, from October 18th, can be read at www.greatparchmentbook.org/2013/10/18/spot-the-difference/.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

TNA podcast - the Battle of Flodden

The latest podcast from the National Archives at Kew is entitled The Battle of Flodden, a recording of a 35 minute account of the battle and its significance by Sean Cunningham.

To listen, visit http://media.nationalarchives.gov.uk/index.php/the-battle-of-flodden/ or download for free from iTunes.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

TNA User Advisory Group seeks new members

The National Archives at Kew (www.nationalarchives.gov.uk) is looking for four new members to join its User Advisory Group. From the TNA postr:

This year we are particularly interested to hear from users who feel they could effectively represent one or more of the following user groups:
  • online users
  • independent researchers
  • users with insights into accessibility, diversity and inclusion

For further details visit www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/news/881.htm. The closing date for expressions of interest is 8 November 2013.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Scottish Genealogy Network - 2nd CPD day report

I had the great pleasure yesterday to give a talk on Irish research at our second Scottish Genealogy Network CPD Day at the University of Stirling Management Centre at Bridge of Allan. There were plenty of other talks and discussions also, at what turned out to be an even busier event than our first one in April - we had 18 attendees back then, yesterday we had an unbelievable 27! On an organisational level, a new development is that the SGN also now has its first group secretary, a position that Emma Maxwell of Maxwell Genealogy in the Borders has graciously offered to take up for the next few months.

For a full write up on the event, and for more on the SGN itself, please read the group's blog post at http://scottishgenealogynetwork.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/second-scottish-genealogy-network-cpd.html - there are big plans for the next few months!

The Scottish Genealogy Network is a networking group that meets on a monthly basis. There is no joining fee and no memb
ership criteria other than that members must work professionally within the Scottish genealogical industry, whether as a professional researcher, archivist, librarian, course tutor or an associated discipline. If that sounds like you, please do get in touch!


Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

London probate service moves

The Principal Probate Registry searchroom in London has moved from First Avenue House, to the Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand. Audrey Collins has blogged an update on this at http://thefamilyrecorder.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/where-are-wills-searching-for-searchroom.html - it seems that the search room terminals will not be up and running for a couple of weeks, but postal enquiries will not be affected.

I first heard of this a couple of days ago from the LinkedIn based UK Professional Researchers in Genealogy, Family & Local History LinkedIn group, thanks to a post from Diana Bouglas (of Geoff Swinfield Genealogical Services). I've not ever visited the service in London, and in the conversation Diana mentioned two computer services available at the facility - Willfinder and Probateman. Querying whether these were names for some kind of genealogical superheroes (!), I asked Diana to clarify what they both did exactly. I was informed that Willfinder has incomplete coverage back to about 1920 (apparently it's about 80% complete, at an optimistic guess), whereas Probateman covers every grant issued from 1996. Diana also mentioned that there is currently no other way of finding post-1996 grants outside the Leeds postal service. useful to know if I ever manage to get along to the unit! Incidentally this is for England and Wales only (Scottish wills are at the NRS in Edinburgh, and Northern Irish at PRONI)

(With thanks to both Audrey and Diana)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Scottish 1920 Valuation Rolls to go online

From the National Records of Scotland (www.nrscotland.gov.uk):

Scottish Property Valuation Rolls for 1920 Go Online

‘Homes fit for heroes’? New historical records offer a fascinating snapshot of Scottish society in the wake of the First World War

The names and addresses of more than 2.6 million people living in Scotland during the post-WW1 period will be published online at 10am on Monday 28 October, as records of Scottish properties in 1920 are released on ScotlandsPeople.gov.uk, the government’s family history website.

Comprising over 76,000 digital images taken from 169 volumes, these new records - known as Valuation Rolls - cover every type of property in Scotland that was assessed as having a rateable value in 1920. As the records contain details for the owners and occupiers of properties, they will offer genealogists and historians fresh insight into Scottish society in 1920.

Each Valuation Roll entry on the website is fully searchable by name and address, with the records listing the names of owners, tenants and occupiers of each property - in many cases occupations are also included. As the Rolls include all types of property, from castles and mansions to crofts and tenements, in turn, the records also include people from across the whole social spectrum.

The Rolls also reveal some fascinating trends in Scotland’s social history at this time, such as the building of the first council housing estate, and the growth of urban allotments and gardens cultivated by working-class gardeners to achieve self-sufficiency. The Rolls also reveal the widespread disposal of land by owners who faced new tax and other burdens from 1918 onwards, and the opportunities for tenant farmers to buy their own farms.

Researchers at the National Records of Scotland have also been spotting celebrities (and family ancestors of famous people) in the records, and have highlighted entries for Muriel Spark’s father, Sir William Burrell, Sir Harry Lauder, Sir Matt Busby, Bill Shankly, Samuel Peploe and the great-grandparents of The Proclaimers. The researchers have even found a quirky entry for a cottage in Dunblane, named for a poem by Robert Tannahill, the contemporary of Burns.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs in the Scottish Government, said:
“ScotlandsPeople is a wonderful resource that enables Scots, those of Scottish descent and anyone with an interest in Scotland to discover more about our nation’s fascinating family and social history. The release of the Valuation Rolls for 1920 strengthens the digital tapestry of Scotland’s story that is available through Scotland’s national archive.”

Tim Ellis, Registrar General and Keeper of the Records of Scotland, said:
“The release of the Valuation Rolls for 1920 will be of enormous help for family and local history research, enabling people to discover ancestors and where and how they were living almost a decade after the Census of 1911. The newly-available records are part of the commitment by the National Records of Scotland to improve our service to the public and provide researchers with the resources that they need.”

Annelies van den Belt, the CEO of DC Thomson Family History (formerly known as brightsolid online publishing), who enable the ScotlandsPeople website on behalf of the National Records of Scotland, said:

“We’re very pleased to add this fourth set of Valuation Roll indexes and images to the ScotlandsPeople website – bringing the current total of index entries on the website to over 94 million. These new records will complement the 1895, 1905 and 1915 Valuation Rolls, which have been published over the past 20 months, and will also help family historians who are looking to fill in gaps after the 1911 Census.”

The 1920 Valuation Rolls will be available on the ScotlandsPeople website (www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk), at the ScotlandsPeople Centre in Edinburgh, and at local family history centres in Glasgow, Kilmarnock, Hawick and Inverness.

(With thanks to Grant Millar)

NB: For further details on the valuation rolls and other land and property based records for Scottish family history research, my book Discover Scottish land Records may help - it can be purchased as an ebook from Gen e-Books at http://www.gen-ebooks.com/ or in print from Gould Genealogy at http://www.gould.com.au/Discover-Scottish-Land-Records-p/utp0283.htm.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Friday, 25 October 2013

More North Yorkshire burials on DeceasedOnline

From Deceased Online (www.deceasedonline.com)

Records for four more cemeteries in Redcar & Cleveland

The collection of burial records for Redcar & Cleveland, North Yorkshire on www.deceasedonline.com has been completed with the inclusion of four more cemeteries.

Loftus (1875 - 2010)
Redcar (1874 - 2010)
Saltburn (1899 - 2010)
Skelton (1875 - 2010)

The records available comprise scans of burial registers, details of each grave including other occupants, and cemetery maps indicating the section locations for graves for all 8 cemeteries in the collection

This week’s blog features more details on the four cemeteries added.

(With thanks to Deceased Online)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

SAFHS adds pre-1841 population lists inventory online

The Scottish Association of Family History Societies (www.safhs.org.uk) has added another online database to its website, entitled Inventory of Published pre-1841 Population Listings. From the site:

This Inventory contains published pre-1841 Population Lists in the following main formats:
  • Censuses 1801 – 1831, mainly containing similar information to the 1841 census
  • Poll Tax Records, mainly 17th century, containing Heads of Households and in some cases other family members
  • Hearth Tax Records, similar to the Poll Tax Records
  • Heads of Families, lists of Heads of Families in the parish, included if known is a fairly complete list of families
  • Examination Lists, adults and older children in the parish examined on their knowledge of the scriptures
  • Visitation Lists, as Examination Lists
  • List of Inhabitants, included where considered a fairly complete list of the people living in the parish or area
  • Population Lists, known to be a complete list, as far as can be confirmed, of those resident in the parish

As with the Burial Grounds inventory added a few days back (see http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/safhs-inventory-of-scottish-graveyards.html), the population lists themselves are not hosted on the site, merely the publication details - nevertheless a highly useful research aid. The inventory is directly accessible at http://safhs.org.uk/populationlists.asp.

(With thanks to Bruce Bishop)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

London from 400 years ago - brought to life

This is an amazing effort: a virtual reconstruction of the city of London from 400 years ago, before the Great Fire. It's the work of second year students at De Montfort University's Pudding Lane Productions. The video starts with a few pre-visualisation paintings - then gets interesting!



(YouTube link is at http://youtu.be/SPY-hr-8-M0)

The full story is at http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2013-10-24-check-out-this-brilliant-virtual-version-of-17th-century-london-before-the-great-fire.

(With thanks to Melanie Backe-Hansen via Facebook)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

More on Lost Cousins Genealogy in the Sunshine event

The latest Lost Couins newsletter carries an update on the Portugal based Genealogy in the Sunshine course event being run by Peter Calver from March 15th-22nd, which I announced yesterday that I will be speaking at (see http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/genealogy-in-sunshine.html). The newsletter is accessible at http://www.lostcousins.com/newsletters/lateoct13news.htm and includes an interview by Peter with Stephen Molyneaux, author of The Marriage Certificate.

(With thanks to Peter)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

The Genealogist - new photo archive

From The Genealogist (www.thegenealogist.co.uk):

Image Archive provides a window into the past
TheGenealogist is the first family history website to launch a dedicated ‘Image Archive’ that allows you to view both 3D and standard images. These historical pictures allow you to relive the past through the eyes of your ancestors. The standard images are free for everyone to search and view and cover the period from 1850 to 1940. See www.TheGenealogist.co.uk/ImageArchive

We all want to know more about the lives our ancestors led. Adding a picture to the family story is the perfect complement to any research. The Image Archive allows anyone to search and view images of towns, landmarks, churches, resorts, occupations and military campaigns. They also include images of social interest showing how your ancestors could have led their lives. You may even be able to find the church were your ancestor was baptised or married.

Diamond subscribers to TheGenealogist will be able to view and download the images in a high resolution format for extra clarity.

The Image Archive is fully searchable and is divided up into sections to allow you to find relevant images of interest, quickly and easily. You can search by Keyword or Title. All the images are tagged and rated for quality to further assist the researcher.

The Third Dimension
Hundreds of the images are available in stunning 3D to really bring the past to life!

With scenes of the hustle and bustle of ‘Market Day’ to the drama of war, there’s a selection to view as both 3D moving images and as 3D ‘Red blue’ images.

Many other scenes are available in a standard format to view, with images not only from the British Isles but also internationally, with scenes ranging from Aldershot to Zanzibar.

Nigel Bayley, Managing Director of TheGenealogist comments: “This is an exciting development for TheGenealogist. To provide the first designated archive to help people understand the lives of their ancestors and find images to use in their family history. With a number of images available in stunning 3D, it really draws you into a forgotten age.”

(With thanks to David Osborne)


Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Pen and Sword books - Christmas discount offer

Publisher Pen and Sword has announced a discount offer to help those wishing to get ahead of the rush for Christmas.

The discount code ENSC15 will provide 15% off any book's RRP when ordered through the company's website at www.pen-and-sword.co.uk

Amongst the books available for your Christmas delectation are the company's "Tracing Your..." family history range, which includes my latest book Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet, and its predecessor, Tracing Your Family History on the Internet. (And there are one or two other offerings from yours truly on their way!)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Genealogy in the Sunshine

Peter Calver from Lost Cousins (www.lostcousins.com) is organising a genealogy course event in Portugal from Saturday 15th - Saturday 22nd March entitled Genealogy in the Sunshine.

First proposed in June of this year (see http://www.lostcousins.com/newsletters/latejun13news.htm#Algarve) the event is now confirmed as definitely going ahead, with five days of workshops taking place at Rocha Brava, a collection of villas and apartments on the Algarve. Yours truly has just agreed to be one of the speakers there, with several others soon to be confirmed. It's going to be warm, sunny, informative - and above all, a lot of fun!

Initially announced to Lost Cousins members, there are still a few spaces available - so if you fancy a week away from British weather in March for something a tad more hospitable in Portugal, drop Peter a line as soon as possible at peter@lostcousins.com.

For further details on the event, consult the following recent Lost Cousins newsletters:

http://lostcousins.com/newsletters/jul13news.htm#Sunshine
http://www.lostcousins.com/newsletters/latesep13news.htm#GinSunshine
http://lostcousins.com/newsletters/oct13news.htm#GenealogyintheSunshine

NB: Peter is co-ordinating the course side of things but attendees will be asked to make their own way there and to book their own accommodation (to avoid hefty travel agent fees). Peter will provide full details on how to do so though.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

British Genes site redesign

Hi everyone, just a wee note to explain the slight redesign to the blog. I received an email yesterday from a reader that the text was difficult to read on a mobile device because of the template image in the background of the blog - something I didn't initially twig because text is set against a white panel on the Blogger template, which was then set against the image. However, this was the second time I had been informed of this by a reader as a problem, and on further investigation this seemed to be an issue primarily with some Android based devices (I have an iPad and a PC where this had never been an issue, and hence why I did not notice it before). The simplest thing was to just remove the background template, and I've since been told that this has made a marked improvement on legibility. Apologies for anyone else who may have had this problem in the past.

Don't forget that you can also subscribe to a daily email feed of news stories from this blog, by simply heading to the left side of the blog to the Subscribe via email box - easy peasy!

One other minor change is that I have slightly renamed the blog from British GENES to The British GENES Blog. Bottom line is that this was done simply to make the title of the page look a bit better! However, there is also a more fundamental message here - you don't want to be reading any aul' British GENES blog, you want to be reading THE British GENES blog!

If there are any other issues affecting legibility, please let me know, and I can have a look.

Anyway, on with the news...!

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

The Charter Towns of Ulster 400 - talk

From PRONI (www.proni.gov.uk):

Dr William Roulston will give a lecture entitled ‘The Charter Towns of Ulster 400’ at 1.00pm on Thursday 31 October 2013 in PRONI. The lecture will mark the visit to PRONI of the travelling exhibition on the Charter towns. Please Email proni@dcalni.gov.uk if you would like to reserve a place for this lecture.

(With thanks to Gavin McMahon)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Foreign Office hoarding historic files in secret archive

There was an interesting article in the Guardian newspaper last Friday, accusing the Foreign Office of hoarding more than a million historic files at a facility in Buckinghamshire. Many of the documents apparently date back to the 19th century. According to the article they "document in fine detail British foreign relations throughout two world wars, the cold war, withdrawal from empire and entry into the common market". The article states that under the Public Records Acts, they should have been transferred to the National Archives at Kew and made public after 30 years. The full article is at www.theguardian.com/politics/2013/oct/18/foreign-office-historic-files-secret-archive.

The Guardian has previously disclosed that over 66,000 Ministry of Defence files are also being held at a warehouse in Derbyshire, some from Northern Ireland - that article is at www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/oct/06/ministry-of-defence-files-archive.

Amongst the Foreign Office files believed to be held in Buckinghamshire are:

Files on Rhodesia
Files about KGB spies Guy Burgess and Donald Maclean
Files on Hong Kong
Nazi persecution case files
The United States
Cold war files
Papers on The treaty of Paris, which concluded the Crimean War (1856)

The full inventory of Foreign Office files held in Buckinghamshire is listed at https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/36037/archive-inventory.pdf.

Of specific interest to the family history community will be a vaguely described collection in Bay 22 of the facility: "Birth, death and marriage registers" - a collection taking up 20.88 metres of shelf space.

From where?

Someone at the Foreign Office not only has some explaining to do, but it looks like some kind of plan is in place to get these documents to the National Archives asap, which now has a mammoth task ahead to work out what to do with it all.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Wanted - new Lord Lyon King of Arms

David Sellar, the current Lord Lyon King of Arms, is to retire in December after 5 years in post at the Court of the Lord Lyon (www.lyon-court.com), the main administrative body for heraldic law in Scotland, which has slightly more legal oomph than its English counterpart as it is considered part of the civil law of Scotland. You steal someone's coat of arms in Scotland, they'll 'ave ye!

The Scottish Courts are currently advertising for a replacement at www.scotcourts.gov.uk/news/all-news/2013/10/18/the-office-of-lord-lyon-king-of-arms-vacancy.

For more on the story visit www.bletherskite.net/2013/10/21/situations-vacant-lord-lyon-king-of-arms/.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Plymouth History Centre proposed relocation plans

A note from Maureen Selley, chair of the Devon FHS:

British GENES readers with west country interests may be interested in the latest news concerning the proposed Plymouth History Centre and the plans to relocate Plymouth & West Devon Record Office from its present unsuitable site to a more appropriate position within the city.

The latest news is on www.plymouth.gov.uk/homepage/creativityandculture/historycentre.htm with the comment:

We are asking the public to offer ideas and suggestions to build our new exciting historic and cultural centre.

There is also the opportunity to complete an online survey - closing date 29th October 2013.

(With thanks to Maureen)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

ScotlandsPeople computer system now available in Inverness

The ScotlandsPeople computer system, as used at the ScotlandsPeople Centre in Edinburgh (and different to the online site), is now accessible in Inverness at Highland Archives (www.highlandarchives.org.uk), on Bught Road.

From Janet Baker, Education and Outreach Co-ordinator at High Life Highland, Highland Archive Service:

Just a quick email to let you know that we now have available here the ScotlandsPeople service which people usually have to go to the ScotlandsPeople Centre in Edinburgh to access. The cost is the same, £15 per day, hours 10am-4.30 pm Monday to Friday. There are four PCs with ScotlandsPeople, three are bookable in advance and one is a drop-in PC. Contact details to book – 01463 256400 or email inverness.registrars@highland.gov.uk

This now means that the ScotlandsPeople system can be accessed at Edinburgh (ScotlandsPeople Centre: Mon-Fri), Glasgow (Glasgow Genealogy Centre: Mon-Fri), Hawick (Heritage Hub: Thurs and Fri only), Kilmarnock (Burns Monument Centre: Mon-Sat), Inverness (Highland Archives: Mon-Fri), and I think also in Ayr (tbc).

Spreading access to the system across the country has been one of the best genealogy initiatives in Scotland in recent years - here's hoping it continues to become available in other parts of the country in due course.

(With thanks to Lorna Kinnaird on the Scottish Genealogy Network members page on LinkedIn)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

South African Ancestry24 site bought by Ancestry.com

American blogger Dick Eastman is reporting that the US based Ancestry.com has purchased four million records from the former South African website Ancestry24 (http://ancestry24.com), which ceased operation earlier this year.

The full announcement on the Ancestry24 site states:

ANCESTRY.COM PURCHASES FAMILY HISTORY RECORDS FROM MEDIA24

Ancestry.com, the world’s largest online family history resource, has acquired over four million South African records from Ancestry24, the South African family history website.

Ancestry.com intends to make the records available to members in the future, adding to the company’s existing 12 billion records that already help millions of people worldwide discover, preserve and share their family history.

Anyone looking to find out more information about the records should visit http://www.ancestry.com/ancestry24, as Ancestry24.co.za is officially closed as at 22 Oct 2013.

(With thanks to Dick Eastman)

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Unlock the Past Australian talks tour - open for booking

Next February I will be taking part in the fourth Unlock the Past Genealogy Cruise around Southern Australia, but in addition to the cruise I will also be taking part in a parallel talks tour at various venues from Brisbane to Perth, alongside Thomas MacEntee from the United States, also on the cruise. Unlock the Past has now uploaded details of the venues for these sessions and is now taking bookings for each.

The venues are:

Sat 1 Feb – Brisbane seminar
9am-4.30pm at Broncos Leagues Club, Fulcher Road, Red Hill

Mon 3 Feb – Canberra seminar
9am-4.30pm at the Hellenic Club, Matilda Street, Woden

Thu 6 Feb – Melbourne seminar
10am-5pm at the Celtic Club, 316-320 Queen Street, Melbourne

Sat 8 Feb – Adelaide seminar
10am-4pm at North Adelaide Football Club, Function Room, Menzies Crescent, Prospect

Tue 11 Feb – Hobart seminar
9am-3.30pm at the Philip Smith Centre, 2 Edward St, Glebe

Thu 13 Feb – Sydney seminar
10am-5pm at Parramatta RSL, Corner Macquarie and O’Connell Streets, Parramatta

Sat 15 Feb – Perth seminar
9am-4.30pm at the State Library of WA, 25 Francis Street, Perth Cultural Centre, Perth

The PRE-BOOKED prices are as follows:
- $39.50 – full day
- $29.50 – half day (morning or afternoon)

The PAY ON THE DAY prices are as follows:
- $60.00 – full day
- $40.00 – half day

For further details, or to book, please visit http://www.unlockthepast.com.au/events/chris-paton-and-thomas-macentee-downunder

With my professional genealogy hat on I will say that each day's programme (still to be finalised) will provide a range of useful topics and expertise to hopefully inform your ancestral research endeavours. With my Ulsterman hat on, I'll also add that it should equally be good craic - we'll hopefully see you there!

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

New GRO Ireland website - classic of civil service design

The General Register Office in the Republic of Ireland has moved to a new website platform, located at www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/General-Register-Office.aspx. It's a true classic of civil service design, but does not seem to offer anything new that the previous site did - the certificate/photocopies ordering site, with the relevant application forms, is now at www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/Apply-for-Certificates.aspx. The previous GRO site link at www.groireland.ie now redirects to the new platform.

Note that the Apply for Certificates Online link on the new page does not offer the four Euros photocopies useful for genealogy research, but redirects to the HSE website where you can only apply for full certificates at €20 each, presumably once you have remortgaged your property beforehand to pay for them. As before, use the application forms on the GRO site itself to apply for the photocopies of the entries - by post, or fax.

The word of today is - anticlimax. One day the GRO might learn how to put a payment system on its own site for those only interested in the photocopies provision - surely someone there knows what a Visa or debit card is?! The idea that in 2013 we're still having to post applications or fax them through is laughable. Are the GRO still also using typewriters?!

*Sigh*

For news of forthcoming extended online GRO index provisions being made available via the IrishGenealogy.ie website, see Claire Santry's Back to Our Past report at http://irish-genealogy-news.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/back-to-our-past-2013-part-two.html.

UPDATE: Read John Grenham's blog post on the new search room for the GRO in Dublin, at http://www.irishtimes.com/blogs/irishroots/2013/10/14/the-new-general-register-office-research-room-is-a-disgrace/. The news doesn't get any better...

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Forthcoming Scotland 1750-1850 genealogy course

My next Pharos Tutors (www.pharostutors.com) hosted genealogy course is entitled Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Registers, and commences on November 13th, running for 5 weeks, and priced at £45.99. This is a follow up course, and at a slightly more advanced level, than its predecessor, Scottish Research Online, which ended two weeks ago (and which will be repeated in 2014).

As with the last course, I've just recorded a short video introduction to help provide a flavour of what to expect!



For further details on the course, and/or to sign up, please visit http://pharostutors.com/details.php?coursenumber=302

Once again, I'll hopefully see a few of you there!

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Major Irish databases to launch in time for Christmas

Claire Santry is reporting that the National Archives of Ireland (www.nationalarchives.ie) is planning to upload its 1821-1851 census fragments online by Christmas, along with 1841 and 1851 census search forms used for old age pension applications after 1908 (for a Northern Irish example of how useful these can be visit http://walkingineternity.blogspot.co.uk/2013/08/irish-pension-applications-and-census.html). The archive's Valuation Office field, house, tenure and quarto books, which carry additional information not presented in the published version of Griffith's Valuation (such as years when leases were granted) will also be going online in December or January.

In addition the Irish Genealogy website (www.irishgenealogy.ie) will also shortly be uploading updated statutory BMD indexes from 1845 to the present day, with enhanced details for birth indexes from 1903-1927 included. This was first announced as on the cards in May of this year - for background, see http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/republic-of-irelands-gro-indexes-to-go.html.

For full details of all the developments read Claire's detailed Back to Our Past report at http://irish-genealogy-news.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/back-to-our-past-2013-part-two.html.

(With thanks to Claire Santry)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Bexley Local Studies and Archive Centre - proposed move

North West Kent FHS is reporting that Bexley Council is proposing that it moves Bexley Local Studies and Archive Centre from Bexleyheath to Central Library Bromley. A public consultation on the proposed move is running from 21st October 2013 to 16th December 2013.

For further information visit http://northwestkentfamilyhistorysociety.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/bexley-local-studies-and-archive-centre.html

(With thanks to North West Kent FHS)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Monday, 21 October 2013

SAFHS Inventory of Scottish Graveyards goes online

The Scottish Association of Family History Societies has added its Inventory of Scottish Graveyards to its website at http://safhs.org.uk/burialgrounds.asp

The inventory essentially lists the whereabouts of all known monumental inscriptions collections, both published and unpublished, from information supplied by several family history societies across the country, as previously co-ordinated by the SAFHS Graveyard Working Group. The data available includes information on the location and documentary evidence of burial grounds across the country, with details including OS map grid references, religious denomination, years when burials were first known to commence, the FHSs holding the records and much more, though it does not contain actual inscriptions. As a tool, it is one of the most useful in the Scottish genealogist's toolkit, so this is a great move to place it online.

Previously available in CD format, the last edition (the 2nd) was published in 2008. I'm unclear as to whether this is the data from that publication, or if it has been updated, but will update in due course when I find more. Even if the data is that from the 2008 edition, there are details of some 3500 burial grounds included, which should certainly be able to help most people!


The online presentation arranges the records alphabetically by county, parish and burial ground name(s). Using the search fields above the list you can instantly jump to the area of interest. The database is free to access.

UPDATE: This is currently the 2008 edition, but each family history society has been asked to provide an update on any new publications produced since then, the details of which will be added to the database. Once this is done the plan is to then update the database every six months or annually.

(With thanks to Bruce Bishop)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Winners of English Heritage Angel Awards 2013

From English Heritage (www.english-heritage.org.uk)

LONDON PUB, LEAD MINE, GOTHIC FOLLY AND LEICESTERSHIRE CHURCH - WINNERS OF THE ENGLISH HERITAGE ANGEL AWARDS 2013

- Andrew Lloyd Webber Awards for Local People who Save Their Heritage–

The winners of the English Heritage Angel Awards, founded by Andrew Lloyd Webber to celebrate the efforts of local people in rescuing their heritage, were announced at a glittering West End show in London today (Monday 21 October, 2013). The annual awards are run by English Heritage and inspired by its Heritage at Risk Register.

Andrew Lloyd Webber, addressing a packed audience of heritage experts and enthusiasts at the Palace Theatre said: “Every year the Angel Awards bring more and more outstanding heritage rescue projects to public attention and I am delighted that through the Angel Awards we can properly celebrate the people involved. This year’s winners have shown courage, tenacity and perseverance and have saved listed buildings and historic ruins from being lost to posterity. Now these places have a future. They will uplift and enlighten all who come across them and will be cherished by their communities for generations to come.”

Paul Martin hosted the show. Andrew Lloyd Webber, George Clarke, “Restoration Man”, Bettany Hughes, award-winning author, historian and broadcaster, and Richard Chartres Bishop of London gave speeches, announced the winners and presented the awards.

Out of a strong field of 17 finalists, the winners were:

Angel Award for the Best Rescue of an Industrial Building or Site
Malcolm and James Nattrass for Low Slit Mine, Bishop Auckland, Co Durham

Angel Award for the Best Rescue of any Heritage building or site
Ivy House Community Pub Limited for the Ivy House Public House, Southwark, London

Angel Award for the Best Repair of a Place of Worship
St James’s Restoration Fund and Parochial Church Council for the Church of St James the Greater, Ab Kettleby, Leicestershire

Angel Award for the Best Craftsmanship Employed on a Heritage Rescue
Vivat Trust / Save Hadlow Tower Action Group for Hadlow Tower, Tonbridge, Kent

Angel Award voted for by English Heritage followers and Telegraph readers
Vivat Trust / Save Hadlow Tower Action Group for Hadlow Tower, Tonbridge, Kent.

Paul Martin said: “A pub, a church, a mine and a tower built for partying – our winners have saved places which say so much about the variety of England’s buildings and the richness of our culture. These places don’t just tell us about the past. The human stories behind their rescues tell us just as much about the present. I’d love to visit all of them – though not in the same day!”

Simon Thurley, Chief Executive of English Heritage, said: “This year we, as a nation, celebrate a hundred years of heritage protection by the government – but the Angels prove again that it is individuals, inspired by their local historic treasures who make all the difference. While we need official bodies to give legal protection to our national heritage, it is ordinary people who more often than not save important historic places that have fallen into neglect and disrepair. I salute all our winners and hope that they will inspire others to follow their brilliant example. ”

Andrew Lloyd Webber chaired the judging panel which comprised Simon Thurley, Chief Executive of English Heritage, Charles Moore of the Telegraph, Bettany Hughes, George Clarke and the Bishop of London.

For more information on the winners see www.english-heritage.org.uk/caring/angel-awards/winners-2013/. Short videos of all 17 of the shortlisted candidates, including the winners, can be seen on the English Heritage website www.english-heritage.org.uk/angelawards and on the English Heritage YouTube channel http://bit.ly/16fCCPW.

The English Heritage Angel Awards are co-funded by the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation. www.andrewlloydwebberfoundation.com and the Telegraph is the media partner. More information about the English Heritage Angel Awards is at www.english-heritage.org.uk/angelawards

(With thanks to Debbie Hickman)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Additional witchcraft conference event at PRONI

From PRONI (www.proni.gov.uk):

The History of Witchcraft, Magic and the Devil in Ireland Conference, 31st October 2013, is now fully booked. However due to popular demand PRONI will rerun this event on 28th November 2013.

Anyone currently on the October reserve list will be automatically added to the November event. Anyone else who would like to attend the November event please contact PRONI. The times, speakers and schedule for the 28th November event will run the exact same as that of the 31st October (see http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/proni-witchcraft-conference-for.html).

(With thanks to Gavin McMahon)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Irish databases searchable via Ancestry

Ancestry (www.ancestry.co.uk) has added three new Irish collections to its site:

Ireland, Guinness Archive Index, 1824-2002
http://search.ancestry.co.uk/search/db.aspx?dbid=9090
Original data: Guinness Storehouse, Dublin, Ireland. http://www.guinness-storehouse.com/en/GenealogySearch.aspx: accessed 15 April 2013.

Ireland, Census, 1901
http://search.ancestry.co.uk/search/db.aspx?dbid=70667
Original data: Census of Ireland 1901/1911. The National Archives of Ireland. http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/search/

Ireland, Census, 1911
http://search.ancestry.co.uk/search/db.aspx?dbid=70564
Original data: Census of Ireland 1901/1911. The National Archives of Ireland. http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/search/

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Podcast on researching a serial killer

The latest podcast from the National Archives at Kew is entitled John Reginald Christie: a study in sources, The National Archives and beyond. It is a 41 minute talk from Dr Jonathan Oates, and can be listened to at http://media.nationalarchives.gov.uk/index.php/john-reginald-christie-a-study-in-sources-the-national-archives-and-beyond/ or downloaded for free from iTunes.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

British Newspaper Archive additions

Recent additions to the British Newspaper Archive (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk):

Alnwick Mercury 1889, 1912
Berkshire Chronicle 1877
Berwickshire News and General Advertiser 1952
Birmingham Daily Gazette. 1877 - 1889
Burnley Express 1944
Burnley Gazette 1876 - 1877, 1885, 1895, 1900
Burnley News., The 1930 - 1931
Daily Herald., The 1926
Liverpool Daily Post 1905
Luton News and Bedfordshire Chronicle., The 1950
Southern Reporter 1918, 1926 - 1927
Surrey Comet, and General Advertiser., The 1879
Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer., The 1868

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Friday, 18 October 2013

North Yorkshire burials and TNA military burial removals

From Deceased Online (www.deceasedonline.com):

Records added for 8 cemeteries in Redcar & Cleveland, North Yorkshire

Redcar & Cleveland is the first council area in North Yorkshire included on www.deceasedonline.com with the addition of all records for 8 cemeteries dating back to 1857.

Immediately available are records for 4 locations:

Boosbeck (1931 - 2010)
Brotton (1936 - 2010)
Eston (1863 - 2010)
Guisborough (1873 - 2010)

The records available comprise scans of burial registers, details of each grave and, coming soon, cemetery section maps indicating grave locations

Records for the remaining four cemeteries will be available very soon. For full details, see the database coverage summary.

The location and history of Redcar & Cleveland on the North Yorkshire coast are reflected in many of the burial records such as this mariner's memorial.


The National Archives (TNA), burial ground removals

Following last week's launch of burial ground removals dating back to the 16th century, many users have asked about more details of the TNA records.

All information on the nearly 200 burial grounds are listed by English or Welsh region and then in alphabetical order by county in the database coverage section.

Among the 105,000 records available currently (more will be added next week), those with the highest number of burials include:

Cathay's Cemetery, Cardiff (1828-1992)
Old Cemetery, Gloucester (1800-1973)
Holy Trinity Churchyard, Liverpool (1790-1887)
Bath Street Burial Ground,Walsall (1756-1941)
West Hill Cemetery, Winchester (1826-1970)
Several sites in Manchester and Salford dating from 1508

(With thanks to Richard Gray)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

My Heritage and FamilySearch collaboration

From MyHeritage (www.myheritage.com):

TEL AVIV, Israel & SALT LAKE CITY, Utah--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MyHeritage, the popular online family history network, and FamilySearch.org announced today the signing and commencement of a strategic partnership that forges a new path for the family history industry. Under this multi-year partnership, MyHeritage will provide FamilySearch with access to its powerful technologies and FamilySearch will share billions of global historical records and family tree profiles spanning hundreds of years with MyHeritage. This will help millions of MyHeritage and FamilySearch users discover even more about their family history.

FamilySearch will provide MyHeritage with more than 2 billion records from its global historic record collections and its online Family Tree. These records will be added to SuperSearch, MyHeritage’s search engine for historical records, and will be matched with family trees on MyHeritage using its matching technologies. MyHeritage users will gain access to an unprecedented boost of historical records and family tree profiles, which are key to researching and reconstructing their family histories. This reinforces MyHeritage's position as an international market leader, with gigantic assets of family trees and records, which are the most globally diverse in the industry.

FamilySearch members will benefit from MyHeritage's unique technologies which automate family history discoveries. Smart Matching™ automatically finds connections between user-contributed family trees and Record Matching automatically locates historical records relevant to any person in the family tree. By receiving accurate matches between FamilySearch’s Family Tree profiles and historical record collections, such as birth, death, census, and immigration documents, FamilySearch members will be able to more effectively grow their family trees in size and in depth and add conclusions supported by historical records.

“For more than a hundred years, FamilySearch has been dedicated to working with the world’s archives to preserve their records for future generations” said Gilad Japhet, Founder and CEO of MyHeritage. “Their massive undertaking has made family history more accessible to everyone. This partnership highlights MyHeritage’s technology leadership and our firm commitment to adding historical records on a massive global scale, accelerating our vision of helping families everywhere explore and share their legacy online. We look forward to a fruitful future working hand in hand with our friends at FamilySearch.”

“FamilySearch values collaborative partnerships that enable more people, in more places, to discover their family history” said Dennis Brimhall, CEO of FamilySearch. “MyHeritage is an innovative company that has a fast growing, global online audience. We are excited to commence this partnership which enables FamilySearch to better serve the global family history community.”

(With thanks to Laurence Harris)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Kent History Centre Archives User Group

I've been asked to give the following a quick plug by genealogist Celia Heritage, concerning a new Kent History Centre Archives User Group that has been established - the group also has a Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kent-History-Centre-Archives-User-Group/656597701018361

Our aim is to enhance the interface between the public and archives at the Kent History and Library Centre in Maidstone.

The Kent History Centre User Group has recently been established in order to improve the experience for archives users at the Kent History and Library Centre in Maidstone.

Since the move from the previous archives at the Centre for Kentish Studies many issues have arisen which are inhibiting easy access to information in the archives. At the initial meeting of the group a wish list of changes was established and we hope to work with the management at the Kent History and Library Centre (where the archives is now situated) to improve things for all users of the archives. Among our priorities are the following: the re-introduction of the paper catalogues and indexes into the search room (The online catalogue is far from complete), updating of the archives user guides on the KHLC website, to improve the booking system, to improve training for the staff on the archives reception and search room desks many of whom currently are not familiar with the archival holdings, and to improve the layout of the archives to make it more conducive to study.

(With thanks to Celia)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

SLHF Conference: Trades and Crafts in Scotland, Medieval to Modern

The Scottish Local History Forum's next conference is entitled The Butcher, the Baker and the Candlemaker: Trades and Crafts in Scotland, Medieval to Modern. It runs on Thursday 31 October 2013 at Glasgow Trades Hall - for further details, including details on speakers, visit http://www.slhf.org.

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

DC Thomson Family History and FamilySearch collaboration

From DC Thomson Family History (formerly Brightsolid):

DC Thomson Family History and FamilySearch.org to make billions of records available for people to search

More than 13 million records launched today on findmypast.com

LONDON, England and SALT LAKE CITY, Utah--Annelies van den Belt, the new CEO of DC Thomson Family History, the British-based leader in online family history and owner of findmypast and Genes Reunited, has announced a major new partnership with US-based FamilySearch.org that will give family history enthusiasts access to billions of records online and new technology to collaboratively research their family roots.

DC Thomson Family History, formerly known as brightsolid online publishing, is collaborating with FamilySearch, which has the largest collections of genealogical and historical records in the world, to deliver a wide range of projects including digital preservation, records search, technological development and the means to allow family historians to share their discoveries.

More than 13 million records from FamilySearch.org launched today on findmypast, including major collections of births, marriages and deaths covering America, Australia, and Ireland. Around 600 additional collections, containing millions of records, will follow.

The two organisations have a long history of working together on historical projects, including indexing 132 million records of the 1940 US census and two hundred years of British Army Service Records (Chelsea Pensioners) in a joint digitisation project with The National Archives.

Van den Belt said: “This is fantastic news for our customers all over the world. As a leader in online family history we will be able to offer access to a much wider variety of records dating back hundreds of years and the first batch are ready to search on findmypast. The convenience of searching many treasures from FamilySearch.org along with our own extensive collections will provide rich new insights for our customers.

“This partnership with FamilySearch will accelerate the momentum of our next phase of global growth into new non-English-speaking markets and give more people more access to more records to uncover their family history. This really cements our position as a market leader. ”

“We are excited to work with DC Thomson Family History on a vision we both share,” said Dennis Brimhall, CEO of FamilySearch. “Expanding online access to historical records through this type of collaboration can help millions more people discover and share their family’s history.”

DC Thomson Family History is the British-based leader in online family history, which operates major online sites including findmypast, Genes Reunited and the British Newspaper Archive. It launched in America last year with its findmypast brand.

DC Thomson Family History has a strong record of partnerships with non-profit and public sector organisations such as the British Library and The National Archives among many other major archives and organisations around the world.

(With thanks to Myko Clelland)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Scottish Beyond 2011 - Future of census statistics events

From the NRS:

The Scottish Beyond 2011 - Future of census statistics programme is participating in this years ESRC Festival of Social Science (http://www.esrc.ac.uk/news-and-events/events/festival/festival-events/index.aspx). We are looking forward to running half day events in both Glasgow (7th November afternoon) and Edinburgh (8th November morning) and invite you to attend this free event.

A presentation on Scotland's Census 2011 followed by questions will open the event. Our second session will focus on Beyond 2011 in which we will discuss the Beyond 2011 programme followed by a workshop in which we will focus on the case for small area data.

Both these events are limited in number and so we would encourage you to register as soon as possible to avoid disappointment. Refreshments will be provided for delegates.

If you would like any further information on the Scottish Beyond 2011 programme please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Glasgow event: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/event/5544586006
Edinburgh event: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/event/7719349783

(NB: It looks like the Edinburgh event is already sold out)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.

Forthcoming Society of Genealogists events in London

From the London based Society of Genealogists (www.sog.org.uk):

The following Events will take place at the Society of Genealogists in November. To book a place online, visit our website at: http://www.sog.org.uk/books-courses/events-courses. You can also book by telephone, at the number listed below.

Sat 2 Nov 10:30-13:00 Tying Down your Immigrant Ancestor
A half-day course with Michael Gandy Cost 17.50

Sat 2 Nov 14:00-17:00 Adoption: Tracing your Birth Relatives
Adoption did not become a legal requirement until 1927, and searching for living birth family members or ancestors who were adopted (whether formally or informally) can be tricky. This workshop is designed to help you navigate the difficult path to tracing your birth relatives, please do bring your own queries along.
A half-day workshop with Jeanette King Cost 17.50

Wed 6 Nov 14:00 Tracing your Quaker Ancestors (re-scheduled from 30 Oct)
A one-hour lecture with Michael Gandy Cost 6.00

Mon 11 Nov 10:30-17:00 Genealogy for Librarians & Archivists
The specific aim of this course is to work with those in the field to enhance their knowledge and understanding of genealogy and family history. As appropriate the methods used in this course will include the use of audio-visual materials and group exercises; the active participation of those attending the course will be encouraged and hence places will be limited. The course will be equally suited to staff in libraries and record offices with little experience in the field as well as those who wish to extend their existing knowledge and understanding of the subject.
A full-day course with Else Churchill Cost 60.00

Wed 13 Nov 14:00 My Ancestor Was a Shoemaker
Shoes have been hand made since the time of the Romans. Virtually every community had its own shoemaker, whose trade was handed down from generation to generation. Manufacture on a large scale began in the civil war when they needed boots and shoes. Today shoes are manufactured en-mass or even if only as piece-work factory hands. Learn about the skills, the records and the lives of our shoemaking ancestors.
A one-hour lecture with Ian Waller Cost 6.00

Sat 23 Nov 14:00-17:00 Land Records & Muniments, Deeds, Mortgages & Inquisitions
Family historians cannot undertake ancestral research without recourse to the many and varied records relating to land. From the 1912 Domesday Survey back to the oldest medieval deeds passing enclosure, manorial documents and the use of maps on the way they contain a wealth of detail about people. Very often land records are under-used or completely ignored. Find out what you are missing out on.
A half-day course with Ian Waller Cost 17.50

Wed 27 Nov 14:00 iPhone & iPad for Family History
A one-hour lecture with John Hanson Cost 6.00

Sat 30 Nov 10:30-13:00 Debts, Debtors, Bankrupts & Bigamists
Throughout the 1700s/1800s many people, as today, got badly into debt, some unable to pay them off and often ending in gaol. Records were generated at every level and this course looks at the wealth of family history information they contain by reference to several famous and not so famous cases from all the social classes. It examines the causes and remedies and also looks at the way spouses walked out on those in debt, causing many bigamy cases to result.
A half-day course with Ian Waller Cost 17.50

Sat 30 Nov 14:00-17:00 The British Library Oriental & India Collections
We will look at the records of British India, from the early days of the East India Company in the seventeenth century, are varied and numerous: birth, marriages and deaths; East India Company employees; EIC, British and Indian Armies merchants and traders. Most of the information is to be found at the India Office Library in London, but there is material elsewhere, and increasingly so on the Internet.
A half-day course with Paul Blake Cost 17.50

(With thanks to Lori Weinstein)

Chris

My latest book, Discover Scottish Civil Registration Records, is now available from http://www.gould.com.au (print) and http://www.gen-ebooks.com/unlock-the-past.html (ebook), whilst Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet is available at http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Tracing-Your-Irish-History-on-the-Internet/p/3889/. My next Pharos Scottish course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the OPRs, starts Nov 13th - see http://pharostutors.com.