Category Archives: Death Records

TheGenealogist Launches over 282,000 Parish Records, plus 43,000 New War Memorial Records

 

New records to search from TheGenealogist

The Genealogist has added to the millions of its UK Parish Records collection with over 282,000 new records from Essex, Cumberland and Norfolk making it easier to find your ancestors’ baptisms, marriages and burials in these fully searchable records covering ancient parishes. Some of the records go back as far as 1672.

Also released are another 43,000 new war memorial records.

The new release of War Memorial records means there are now over 350,0War Memorials on TheGenealogist00 searchable records. This latest release includes war memorials from London, along with further English counties including Cumbria, Berkshire, Warwickshire and Suffolk. The collection also stretches across the globe to encompass new War Memorials situated in Perth, Australia and the Province of Saskatchewan in Canada. Fully searchable by name, researchers can read transcriptions and see images of the dedications that commemorate soldiers who have fallen in the Boer War, WW1 and various other conflicts.

 

 

 

example of a war memorialIn amongst these newly published War Memorial records are those from St John’s Church in Bassenthwaite, Cumbria. This is a fascinating WW1 roll with men who died or served and includes information such as that for Louis Willis Bell who died in Rouen as a result of poison gassing. Another notable entry is that for Isaac Hall. This soldier enlisted in January 1915 in 7th Border Regiment and was discharged on the 21st March 1917, because of wounds resulting in the loss of his left leg.

 

 

 

 

Example of Parish Records on TheGenealogist:

Parish Records can sometimes unearth fascinating stories

We are all aware that parish records give us those all important dates and names for our ancestors – but in some cases they reveal interesting stories as well. When a vicar, or parish clerk, feels the person they are entering in the register needs an extra explanation, over and above the date and name of the person, then some fascinating historical details can emerge for researchers to read.

As an excellent example of this we can look in the parish records for All Saints Church, in Maldon, Essex. Here we find the burial of one Edward Bright in the year 1750. Edward, a Tallow Chandler and Grocer, who died when he was in his late twenties, had an unusual claim to fame.

The entry in the parish register on TheGenealogist reveals that he was an extremely large man, weighing 42 stone (588 pounds) and was in fact believed to be the fattest man in England at the time.

The Fat Man of Maldon

Edward Bright by David Ogborne http://www.itsaboutmaldon.co.uk/edwardbright/) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The notes for his burial on the 12 November 1750 in the parish register explain that Edward had to be buried in a special coffin as he was so large. To remove the casket from his room above his shop, special provisions were needed requiring structural modifications to the wall and stairs to aid his final journey to All Saints.

Having arrived at church on a carriage, more unusual procedures were used to get the deceased to his final resting place. Edward’s coffin would have been far too heavy to be borne by pallbearers up the aisle to rest before the congregation during the funeral service. Also it would have severely taxed the muscles of those men who would have normally lowered it manually into the grave. The logistics, in this case, needed rollers to be used to slide the coffin up to a brickwork vault and then a triangle and pulleys were used to lower poor Edward into his grave.

The parish register entry did, however, not just dwell on the problems of burying a man of such large proportions. It went on to also record a number of positive attributes that Edward Bright had – so giving us a picture of the man that he was. We can see that he was well thought of by the vicar and community of this 18th century Essex parish. The register tells us that he was: “… A Very Honest Tradesman. A Facetious Companion, Comely In His Person, Affable In His Temper, A Kind Husband, A Tender Father & Valuable Friend.”

Burial record from parish record on TheGenealogist

As we have seen here, sometimes a parish register can give you so much more than just the date that your ancestor was baptised, married or buried.

https://www.thegenealogist.co.uk/featuredarticles/2017/the-fat-man-of-maldon-436/

Millions of New Parish Records added to TheGenealogist

TheGenealogist has made millions of new Hampshire Parish Records available on its site.

TheGenealogist logo

  • Released in partnership with the Hampshire Genealogical Society there are over 2.1 million new fully searchable records of individuals released online for the first time
  • With these records those searching for ancestors from Hampshire can discover almost 1.8 million people recorded within the baptisms from this area in the south of England as far back as 1538 up to 1751
  • Family researchers can also discover the details of over 212,000 individuals from marriages between 1538 and 1753 and nearly 143,800 people listed in the burials of Hampshire from 1838 to 1865

Hampshire Genealogical Society worked with TheGenealogist to publish their records online, making 2,135,878 individuals from baptism, marriage and burial records fully searchable. Dolina Clarke, Chairman of Hampshire Genealogical Society said:

“The Hampshire Genealogical Society have decided to put the remaining data from their parish register indexes for Hampshire, which are not already on line, with FHS-Online and TheGenealogist (S & N). We looked at various different online sites and felt that S & N were able to offer us a very fair deal. Furthermore they are a British company with whom we have had a very good relationship for over 20 years.”

Dolina Clarke, Chairman HGS www.hgs-familyhistory.com

Mark Bayley, Head of Online Development at TheGenealogist, welcomed Hampshire Genealogical Society to the growing number family history societies on both TheGenealogist and FHS-Online saying: “We’re delighted that HGS chose to publish their records through TheGenealogist and FHS-Online. This release adds to the ever expanding collection of parish records on both websites. These partnerships help societies boost their funds whilst bringing their records to a much wider audience, through online publication.”

This release joins TheGenealogist’s already published Hampshire parish records, sourced from the Phillimore Registers, and soon we will also be adding further transcriptions that will fill in any gaps to provide an even more comprehensive coverage of this important county.

If your society is interested in publishing records online, please contact Mark Bayley on 01722 717002 or see fhs-online.co.uk/about.php


 

Example: The last Briton to die in a duel on English soil.

James Alexander Seton was the last British person to be killed in a duel on English soil and he is buried in his family’s vault at St Mary’s Fordingbridge, Hampshire.

st-marys-fordingbridgeSt Mary’s, Fordingbridge, Hampshire from the Image Archive on TheGenealogist.

During the early 1840s James Seton, and his wife Susannah, rented some rooms in Southsea on the outskirts of Portsmouth, Hampshire. Seton was a man of means, inheriting wealth, and so had no need to work. The son of a Colonel, he had spent a brief spell in the Army as a junior cavalry officer though his short career never found him being promoted any higher than the rank of cornet. The Setons were of Scottish ancestry, their forebears being descended from the Earls of Dunfermline and Seton’s grandfather was Vice-Admiral James Seton, governor of St Vincent in the Caribbean.

In May 1845 James Seton met Isabella Hawkey, whom he set about pursuing even though he was a married man. She was the wife of Lieutenant Henry Hawkey, an officer in the Royal Marines. When the coast was clear, and her husband was away, Seton began paying visits to Isabella at her lodgings bearing gifts. Lt. Hawkey began to hear the rumours of this and forbade his wife from seeing Seton again. On 19 May 1845, however, there was a ball held in the King’s Rooms, Southsea, which the Hawkeys as well as James Seton attended. When Isabella danced with Seton this caused a quarrel in which Lt. Hawkey called Seton a “blaggard and a scoundrel”. Having been insulted by this, Seton decided to challenge the Royal Marine Officer to a duel. The next evening, on the beach at Browndown near Gosport and after the seconds had measured out fifteen paces, the duelists took their pistols and fired. James Seton’s shot missed his opponent; Henry Hawkey’s pistol was half-cocked and failed to fire. Under the rules of dueling, that could have been an honourable end to it but Lieutenant Hawkey insisted on a second exchange of shots and this time Seton fell when he was struck by a bullet entering his lower abdomen.

Suffering from his wounds, the wounded man was taken by boat to Portsmouth where he was operated on by the eminent London surgeon Robert Liston. The surgery at first appeared to go well, but then infection set in and Seton quickly went downhill. He died of his injuries on 2nd June 1845 and was buried eight days later. His funeral procession through the town saw most of the shops closing in respect and he was laid to rest in a tomb outside the east front of the church next to his father. A search finds his burial on the 10th June 1845 in the Hampshire records on TheGenealogist.

james-alexander-seton-burial-10-june-1845

TheGenealogist are launching over 220 million US records

This press announcement is from TheGenealogist:

We are expanding our international records with the release of:

  • 90 million Social Security Death records 1935-2014
  • 1940 Census Images containing 132 million records with searchable transcripts linked to the Enumeration Maps
  • Irish immigration records for 604,596 persons arriving in New York 1846-1851

Many people hit a brick wall where an ancestor seems to disappear from all the records in the U.K. It could be that they have gone abroad for a period or emigrated for good. If your elusive ancestor went to the United States of America, TheGenealogist’s expanded international records can help.

 

Social Security Death Records

The U.S. Social Security Death Index is a database of over 90 million death records. These give information of those who died from 1936 whose death has been reported to the Social Security Administration.

The data includes: Given name and surname; Date of birth; Month and year of death (or full date of death for accounts active in 2000 or later); Social Security number; State or territory where the Social Security number was issued; Last place of residence while the person was alive (ZIP code).

 

1940 Census

The American census is searchable by first name, surname, age, state, county, street address and place of birth (allowing us to find Brits enumerated in the American census). The records give details of over 132 million individuals with a transcription along with the actual image of the schedule. Where available, the record is also linked to the Enumeration Index Map for the area so that you can see exactly which street your ancestor lived on. Our transcripts also have the added benefit of street addresses included, allowing you to search for a street rather than an individual.

The 1940 Census transcripts on TheGenealogist are not the same as those found elsewhere online; apart from the linked maps and street addresses, we have also audited the images discovering many that haven’t been transcribed previously elsewhere. These are also being added to our records.

US 1940 census with maps

 

We believe that experienced researchers will welcome this release, knowing that having alternative transcripts to those already available gives the family historian a better chance of finding people whose names have been difficult to read or have contained errors in the other databases.

 

New York Immigration Records

The New York Port Arrival 1846-1851 series gives the family historian access to useful information about immigrants from Ireland to the United States during the era of the Irish Potato Famine, identifying 604,596 persons who arrived in the Port of New York and giving the name of the ships on which they arrived. Approximately 70 percent of the passengers listed were natives of Ireland, with the rest being nationals of 32 countries that included Canada, Brazil, Saint Croix, Russia, Morocco, the United States and various European countries. Information contained in these records include name, age, town of last residence, destination, passenger arrival date, and codes for the passenger’s gender, occupation, literacy, native country, transit status, travel compartment, passenger port of embarkation, and the identification number for the ship manifest.

 

These new records join TheGenealogist’s growing collection of other U.S.A. data sets such as the WWII PoW records, Early Settlers and Emigrants to America, Passenger Lists, American Wills, Almanacs and Directories.

Nuneaton & North Warwickshire FHS worked with TheGenealogist to put records online

TheGenealogist logo

Press Release from TheGenealogist.

TheGenealogist adds to its growing collection of Parish Records with the release of those for Nuneaton & North Warwickshire.

  • Released in partnership with the Nuneaton & North Warwickshire Family History Society there are over 454,000 new fully searchable records of individuals
  • Allowing the researcher to discover more than 300,000 people recorded within the baptisms from this area in the heart of England
  • Family historians can also discover the details of over 90,000 individuals from marriages and nearly 60,0000 people listed in the burials of Nuneaton & North Warwickshire

Nuneaton & North Warwickshire FHS worked with TheGenealogist to publish their records online for the first time, making 454,525 individuals from baptism, marriage and burial records fully searchable.

“The officers of Nuneaton & North Warwickshire Family History Society are delighted to be working with The Genealogist to bring their collection of baptism, marriage and burial transcriptions for north Warwickshire online…” John Parton (Chairman)

With some of the surviving records reaching back into the 1700s this is an excellent resource for family historians to use for discovering Nuneaton & North Warwickshire ancestors.

The records are also available on TheGenealogist’s Society website FHS-Online.co.uk where societies get 100% of the income.

This new initiative will provide for those researchers preferring online access, while allowing us to continue offering the data on CD.  NNWFHS members have opportunity to take out an enhanced subscription which includes access to the data.” John Parton (Chairman)

This is an ongoing project with the society working on transcribing many more records.

“We’re delighted to welcome NNWFHS to both TheGenealogist and FHS-Online. This release adds to the growing collection of parish records on both websites. These partnerships help societies boost their funds whilst bringing their records to a much wider audience, through online publication.” Mark Bayley (Head of Online Development)

If your society is interested in publishing records online, please contact Mark Bayley on 01722 717002 or see fhs-online.co.uk/about.php

 ####

Examples from Nuneaton & North Warwickshire Parish records

In these records can be found the famous novelist, poet, journalist and translator George Eliot, under her real name of Mary Anne Evans. She was born in Nuneaton and baptised at Chilvers Coton All Saints church in 1819 – she used the pen name of George Eliot in order to be taken more seriously as a writer.

For the settings of the stories, Mary drew on her Warwickshire childhood. Chilvers Coton became Shepperton. Shepperton Church is described in great detail in The Sad Fortunes of the Reverend Amos Barton, and is recognisably that of Chilvers Coton.

Nuneaton Chilvers Coton

Also to be found in these records are members of her family that she used as inspiration for some of her characters. For example the record for her sister Christiana Evans, baptised in 1814, contains a relevant note by the society that reveals: Sister of George Eliot. Christiana, ‘Chrissie’ as she was known to her family, was the original of: “Celia” in ‘Middlemarch’ & “Lucy Deane” in ‘The Mill on the Floss’.

If we search for Mary Anne’s brother, Isaac Pearson Evans who was born in 1816, there is a note which tells us that he was the brother of George Eliot and that he was the basis of Tom Tulliver in “The Mill on the Floss”.

Another person to be found in these records is a Henry Harper, born 1830, whose mother Anne has the note: Anne Harper – daughter of Rev. Bernard Gilpin and Mrs Ebdell (“Mr Gilfil” and “Caterina”) and was the son of “Mr Farquhar – the secondary squire of the parish” in “Scenes of Clerical Life” by George Eliot.

Additionally there is Isabell Adolphine Gwyther born in 1834 and Edward James Wilson Gwyther born in 1837, who share a mention that reveals: The Rev J Gwyther was Curate of Coton. He and his wife were the originals of “Amos & Milly Barton” in ‘Scenes of Clerical Life’ by George Eliot, “Milly Barton” was the mother of six young children.

Using these records you would also be able to find the death in 1836 of Christiana Evans, the writer’s mother.

Norfolk Parish Registers released by TheGenealogist

TheGenealogist logo

TheGenealogist completes Norfolk Parish Records

  • Over 6.23 million new searchable Norfolk Parish Records released in partnership with the Norfolk Record Office
  • This final tranche includes over 5.95 million records for Norfolk
  • Plus more than 276,000 records relating to the boundary areas of Suffolk
  • Adding to the 3.6 million individuals already released earlier

TheGenealogist has successfully completed a project to release over 9.8 million fully searchable records for the registers of baptisms, marriages, marriage banns and burials for Norfolk with images of the original registers.

It is now easier than ever to research Norfolk ancestors in the parish registers of this Eastern English county. With some of the surviving records reaching back as far as the early 1500s, this is a fantastically rich resource for family historians to use for discovering Norfolk ancestors.

Released in partnership with The Norfolk Record Office, the registers of baptisms, marriages, burials and banns of marriage cover the majority of parishes in the Diocese of Norwich. This also includes a number of Suffolk parishes in and near Lowestoft that make up the deanery of Lothingland. Also covered by this release are the parishes in the deanery of Fincham and Feltwell that were part of the Diocese of Ely in south-west Norfolk.

 

 

Examples of famous people to be found in these records include:

Edith Cavell, the First World War Nurse executed by the Germans for treason was born in the South Norfolk village of Swardeston. Her baptism can be found in the register of Swardeston for February 1866 where her father was the vicar and performed the christening ceremony. With a single click family historians can see an image of the actual entry in the parish register.

Edith Cavell baptism 4 Feb 1866 in Norfolk Parish recordsEdith Cavell’s baptism record in the Norfolk Parish Registers on TheGenealogist

Likewise, Horatio Nelson – who would grow up to become perhaps Britain’s best known naval hero of all time – was also baptised by his clergyman father. In Nelson’s case it was in the the village of Burnham Thorpe on the North Norfolk coast in 1758.

Norfolk Parish Records: Horatio Nelson's baptism on TheGenealogistHoratio Nelson’s baptism 1758 in the Norfolk Parish Records on TheGenealogist

Another British seafaring hero, whose baptism can be found in the Norfolk parish records on TheGenealogist, is Henry George Blogg. He would grow up to become known as the “Greatest of the Lifeboatmen” and be highly decorated. In his case, however, it was not his father that baptised him. His entry in the register reveals a less than auspicious entry of this Norfolk hero into the world – the vicar wrote in the parish register of Cromer that Henry was “base born”. Blogg, however, became a skilled seaman and a lifeboatman. For the many rescues, that he took part in as the coxswain of the Cromer lifeboat, he was awarded the gold medal of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution no less than three times and also the RNLI silver medal four times. He was also honoured with the George Cross from the King, the British Empire Medal, and a series of other awards.

Norfolk Parish Registers on TheGenealogist: Henry Blogg baptism 1876Norfolk Parish Registers on TheGenealogist: Record of Henry Blogg’s baptism 1876

Five years after his birth, Henry’s mother, Ellen Blogg, married a fisherman called John Davies. It was this stepfather that taught Henry how to fish and the skills that he needed to be a highly competent seafarer. The marriage banns for Henry’s mother and stepfather can be found in the Banns book for the parish, within the new records on TheGenealogist. Their actual marriage can also be found recorded in the parish register for Cromer included in this new release.

Banns of Marriage - Norfolk Parish Records on TheGenealogistBanns of Marriage records from the Norfolk Parish Registers on TheGenealogist

To search for your Norfolk ancestors go now to: TheGenealogist

New Registrar General for England and Wales

Mark Thomson, Director General of Her Majesty’s Passport Office, has been formally appointed as head of the General Register Office for England and Wales (GRO).

Mr Thomson, who is also Director General of Her Majesty’s Passport Office and sits on the executive management board of the Home Office, becomes the 21st Registrar General since the civil registration of births, deaths and marriages began in England and Wales in 1837.

His appointment to act as head of the General Register Office (GRO), formally agreed by the Queen, has been made following the departure of the previous Registrar General, Paul Pugh, who has taken up a new role outside HM Passport Office.

Registrar General Mark Thomson said:

The General Register Office is a very important part of the services provided by Her Majesty’s Passport Office and I am honoured to be appointed Registrar General.

I look forward to continuing my work with colleagues in GRO on modernising the registration systems and to ensure our customers receive the best, most efficient service possible.

The GRO oversees registration services to the public, including the registration of civil marriage, civil partnerships, births, deaths, stillbirths and adoptions.

It is the Registrar General’s responsibility to make the regulations that govern registrars and the registration processes. He is also required by law to create a free search index of registration records available to the public and to issue certificates on request.

For more information about the Registrar General and the GRO, visit the organisation page of Her Majesty’s Passport Office.

 

Godhelmians have their own ancestor website

At last week’s Who Do You Think You Are? Live in among the talks, family history societies, genealogy suppliers and data providers were a delegation from a town council from Surrey that obviously values its history and genealogy.

It would seem that the town of Godalming has launched its own ancestry website at www.godalmingancestry.co.uk and representatives of the town spoke to our writer and handed us a leaflet that interested us so much that we have decided to mention it here.

Perhaps other towns may like to take a leaf from their book and do something similar?

www.godalmingancestry.co.uk
www.godalmingancestry.co.uk website

 

Godalming Ancestry seeks to help you find the right path back to your ancestors, to walk where they walked and see the sights they may have seen. It features a surname check where you can find a selection of common Godhelmian names (our favourite at Family History Social is most definitely: Enticknapp).

If you have Godhelmian ancestry then it is worth a look.

With a records search request form online and a downloadable burial records, this Town Council is to be applauded for drawing together this portal that also links to the Godalming Museum, the Library, parish church of St Peter and St Paul, Surrey History Centre, Exploring Surrey’s Past and the West Surrey Family History Society.

Well done Godalming!

Godalming Ancestry
Godalming Ancestry Website at www.godalmingancestry.co.uk

 

Nelson’s Words

The BBC 2 TV programme: Nelson in His Own Words is on our screens today, or can be seen on the iPlayer for 30 days.

Horatio Nelson was Britain’s greatest naval hero and this programme shows us how he  was also a prolific letter writer. The correspondence reveals that Nelson was a very different and more complex man than the hero that Britain created after his death. Using Nelson’s letters this drama documentary exposes Nelson’s skilful and manipulative use of PR to advance his career, and shows how he was careful in his praise of his rivals – in case they threatened his own prospects. And the letters reveal how his passionate love affair with Lady Emma Hamilton changed his life forever.  The programme stars the highly regarded RSC actor Jonathan Slinger as Nelson.

In a twist, TheGenealogist have a fascinating article on their website that reveals more of Nelsons words but this time as featured in his last will and testament that can be found using their resources. Of particular interest is the codicil that Nelson wrote just before the Battle of Trafalgar “in sight of the combined fleets of France and Spain” that asked the King and Government to provide for his mistress, Lady Emma Hamilton. With the great victory that Nelson delivered, but losing his life in the process, the authorities heaped money and titles on his family while ignoring his very last wishes in the codicil he had written on the day of his death!

2 - The Death of Nelson

Ordering your BMD certificates

For those new to family history research and looking to get hold of copies of birth, marriage or death certificates, it’s important to know how to go about this and to ensure you don’t fall into the trap of paying too much when ordering the certificates.

Ordering a certificate in England & Wales will cost you no more than £9.25 from the General Register Office or GRO, but there are private companies currently charging up to £25 for ordering certificates on your behalf.

Below are a selection of links of where to order birth, death or marriage certificates without paying any surcharges. If you have any other handy tips or links please do let us know!

General Register Office for England and Wales online ordering service current price £9.25

General Register Office for Scotland ordering service

General Register Office for Ireland ordering service current price €20.00 plus postage

General Register Office Northern Ireland ordering service current price £14.00

Isle of Man General Registry ordering service current price £9.50

Completion of BMD Transcription Project

TheGenealogist has now completed transcribing birth, marriage and death records for England and Wales giving a third of a billion fully searchable records. These are also linked into their unique ‘SmartSearch’ facility taking you through a person’s life events.

This release marks the completion of a hugely successful project for TheGenealogist, now providing family historians with fully transcribed BMD records dating back to the start of civil registration in 1837.

What makes this unique is the linked in ‘SmartSearch’ feature, which makes life even easier for the family historian.

Mark Bayley, Head of Online Content, explains: “The transcriptions allow us to harness the full power of ‘SmartSearch’ and allow our users to swiftly jump from one record to the next. It’s now possible to move through your ancestral line with unparalleled speed. No other site makes searching for your ancestors so straightforward.”

There’s more details on the completion of this project at www.TheGenealogist.co.uk