Friday, 5 June 2015

Research

Over the past week we have been to both the Northamptonshire and Oxfordshire records offices. How do they compare? Northamptonshire is bright, Oxfordshire darker inside. The toilets are nicer in Northamptonshire whereas the other ones have a strong toilet smell, similar to public toilets after a Saturday night partying!

Oxford however does do proper coffee in carafes, tea, hot chocolate in proper cups but Northamptonshire really falls behind with wishy washy everything from a dispenser.

We had far more luck in Northants but did manage to get what we needed including going further back on all sides. However, as is often the case, we raised just as many questions!

We shall be ploughing through it all this weekend, trying to get the information into its electronic and physical places. Have a good weekend everyone.

9 comments:

  1. I research my family tree.. my late father was from Oxfordshire originally before he moved to Suffolk when he was a youngster. Have never been to the research office there, I've managed to do bits on line but it's not the same as having the original records in your hands.

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    1. Oxfords records rarely appear on line, they are one of the few who don't allow it. All records are online at their records office, only older things are 'real' things you can handle.

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  2. Even though my mum's family (her father's side) have been in England for four generations before me, they originally hail from a small village in Co. Clare, Ireland. We are very fortunate, as my mum's family had lived in the village 'forever', and they're mentioned in the Census of 1659, so they were really easy to trace back. What is really odd is that in every generation the eldest boy has been named either John or James, alternating, even down to my son having James for a middle name. If he and his wife ever have a son, I shall have to remind him of this!
    My mum's family on her mother's side was also fairly easy to trace as they were publicans, originally from Belfast, but in Blaydon, Co. Durham, since the late 1700’s, being mentioned in the census of 1801. It was easy to trace them in Irelend, as publicans are always listed on records, Priests and Publicans!
    My dad knew very little of his family, as both of his parents were only children, and were not close to their families. I tried for a few years to trace them, but it was just impossible. My maiden name is of Norse origin, so we know that somewhere way back in the mists of time, we were Vikings, but that's all!
    Family history becomes addictive, it's very interesting to know exactly where one comes from!

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    1. Very interesting. Did you start with your fathers marriage then birth certificates? Normally you can trace relatively backwards from there but we have hit quite a few brick walls and some at the moment, seem impenetrable.

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    2. When I started with my dad's family, I got as far as his parents marriage certificate, but then hit a wall. Dad had lost both his parents by the time he was sixteen, but knew that his mum had always said her maiden name was 'Howard', yet on the marriage cert her name was 'Jones'! She was Welsh, and had told dad she was brought up on a farm in South Wales, so the odds of tracing her family were virtually zero! I decided to concentrate my efforts on my mum's family instead, which has paid huge dividends!

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    3. Hmm, not previously married?

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    4. Nope, has her listed as a spinster. They were married in his home town, her father was listed as 'Jones' a farmer from Carmarthenshire. The weirdest part though is that her address is the same as his, and they were the only two people listed as living there, maybe they were just ahead of the times and living in 'sin'? I sort of hope they were, it'd be nice to have found a skeleton in the family closet!

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  3. So pleased that you have made some more progress. I visited the records office in Beverley whilst researching J's family for him; it was very old fashioned compared to the one in our home town, but it was lovely to be able to make progress, rule one thing out and confirm others, including ownership of a windmill. The best thing was the discovery of the origins of a very unusual first name that had been used several times down the generations. You would have thought that, added to our unusual surname would have made life easy whilst searching online, but it didn't. The visit to the records office settled quite a few things for us.

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    1. We have some profits - spelt 12 different ways so. Also have quite a few base born and one or two rogues!

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