Family history should reveal more than facts and dates, lists of names and places it should bring ancestors alive in the context of their times and the surroundings they knew and research into local history records is one of the most rewarding ways of gaining this kind of insight into their world. That is why Jonathan Oatess detailed introduction to these records is such a useful tool for anyone who is trying to piece together a portrait of family members from the past. In a series of concise and informative chapters he looks at the origins and importance of local history from the sixteenth century onwards and at the principal archives national and local, those kept by government, councils, boroughs, museums, parishes, schools and clubs. He also explains how books, photographs and other illustrations, newspapers, maps, directories, and a range of other resources can be accessed and interpreted and how they can help to fill a gap in your knowledge. As well as describing how these records were compiled, he highlights their limitations and the possible pitfalls of using them, and he suggests how they can be combined to build up a picture of an individual, a family and the place and time in which they lived.
The trail that an ancestor leaves through the Victorian period and the twentieth century is relatively easy to follow the records are plentiful, accessible and commonly used. But how do you go back further, into the centuries before the central registration of births, marriages and deaths was introduced in 1837, before the first detailed census records of 1841? How can you trace a family line back through the early modern period and perhaps into the Middle Ages? Jonathan Oatess clearly written new handbook gives you all the background knowledge you need in order to go into this engrossing area of family history research. He starts by describing the administrative, religious and social structures in the medieval and early modern period and shows how these relate to the family historian. Then in a sequence of accessible chapters he describes the variety of sources the researcher can turn to. Church and parish records, the records of the professions and the courts, manorial and property records, tax records, early censuses, lists of loyalty, militia lists, charity records all these can be consulted. He even includes a short guide to the best methods of reading medieval and early modern script.Jonathan Oatess handbook is an essential introduction for anyone who is keen to take their family history research back into the more distant past.
Of all family history sources, death records are probably the least used by researchers. They are, however, frequently the most revealing of records, giving a far greater insight into our ancestors' lives and personalities than those records created during their lifetime.Celia Heritage leads readers through the various types of death records, showing how they can be found, read and interpreted and how to glean as much information as possible from them. In many cases, they can be used as a starting point for developing your family history research into other equally rewarding areas.This highly readable handbook is packed with useful information and helpful research advice. In addition, a thought-provoking final chapter looks into the repercussions of death its effects on the surviving members of the family and the fact that a premature death could sometimes affect the family for generations to come.
This accessible, well-organized, easy-to-use beginners guide to the world of family history is essential reading for anyone who wants to find their way into this fascinating subject. In a series of short, practical chapters Simon Fowler takes readers through all the first steps that will reveal the lives of their ancestors and the world they lived in. He looks at every aspect of research, from finding family papers and interviewing relatives, through exploring websites, archives, newspapers and directories, to all the other sources that can throw a light into the past. In a clear, straightforward way he explains how vital records of births, marriages and deaths can be used as the starting point in a sequence of eye-opening family detective work. Simon Fowlers introduction, which is founded on a career of genealogical research and writing, is an indispensable basic book for anyone entering in the field.
Parish records are essential sources for family and local historians, and Stuart Raymond's handbook is an invaluable guide to them. He explores and explains the fascinating and varied historical and personal information they contain. His is the first thoroughgoing survey of these resources to be published for over three decades. ??In a concise, easy-to-follow text he describes where these important records can be found and demonstrates how they can be used. Records relating to the poor laws, apprentices, the church, tithes, enclosures and charities are all covered. The emphasis throughout is on understanding their original purpose and on revealing how relevant they are for researchers today. ??Compelling insights into individual lives and communities in the past can be gleaned from them, and they are especially useful when they are combined with other major sources, such as the census.??Your Ancestors' Parish Records is an excellent introduction to this key area of family and local history research Ð it is a book that all family and local historians should have on their shelf.
Researching family history has become increasingly popular in recent years. The documents held at the Public Record Office and the Family Records Centre span over 1,000 years and contain a wealth of information for family historians. This revised and expanded sixth edition of the publication provides a guide to using the national archives of England, Wales and the UK. It contains guidance on: using basic family history records, such as the census, wills and records for birth, marriage, death; tracing records regarding migration; researching the background of people from a wide range of professional, religious, social and regional groups; using military and legal records; and using the Public Record Office online catalogue.
Jayne Shrimpton's complete guide to dating, analysing and understanding family photographs is essential reading and reference for anyone undertaking genealogical and local history research. Using over 150 old photographs as examples, she shows how such images can give a direct insight into the past and into the lives of the individuals who are portrayed in them. Almost every family and local historian works with photographs, but often the fascinating historical and personal information that can be gained from them is not fully understood. They are one of the most vivid and memorable ways into the past.This concise but comprehensive guide describes the various types of photograph and explains how they can be dated. It analyses what the clothes and style of dress can tell us about the people in the photographs, their circumstances and background.Sections look at photographs of special occasions baptisms, weddings, funerals - and at photographs taken in wartime, on holiday and at work. There is advice on how to identify the individuals shown and how to find more family photographs through personal connections, archives and the internet - and how to preserve them for future generations.Jayne Shrimpton's handbook is an authoritative, accessible guide to old photographs that no family or local historian can be without.As featured in The Argus.
This book is innovative. A plethora of genealogy books primarily assume that family history research is by adults, for adults, marking family history as an ‘adults only’ sphere of life. This book establishes a new dimension in family history research. It is written in the belief that engaging in family history is a venture for all of the present-day family, regardless of age and, sometimes, because of age. To assist those of all ages who venture into this wider domain of family history the book is laden with practical examples. The author has an outstanding educational background with marked national success at all levels, from sole-teacher of a rural school to professorship achievements. At each level he has been noted nationally. His qualifications reflect this lasting commitment to education with imagination and an abiding belief in the potential of families and their children. He is an acknowledged international expert in teams and team leadership. The subject of his Doctor of Philosophy thesis was in this field and his Master of Philosophy thesis, ‘The Singing Word’, was an experiential development of children’s creative writing. He is a lifelong genealogist. This book, assuredly, has new material for families, educators and children. It leads from their research of the family’s yesterdays to depictions of the family’s contemporary setting. It then leads children and adults into factual and creative portrayals of their present lives which will be handed on to future generations as informative elements of past and present family history.
The Black Country in the West Midlands is an important site for family historians. Many researchers, seeking to trace their ancestry back through the generations, will find their trail leads through it. And yet, despite the burgeoning interest in genealogy and the importance of the region in so many life stories, no previous book has provided a guide to the Black Country's history and to the documents and records that family historians can use in their research. In this accessible and informative introduction to the subject, Michael Pearson looks at the history and heritage of the region and gives a graphic insight into the world in which our ancestors lived. He concentrates on the role the Black Country played during the industrial revolution when the development of mining, industry and transport transformed the economic and social life of the area. This was a period when living and working conditions were poor, families were large, children worked from an early age, often in the mines, and life expectancy was less than 20. And it was the era in which the Black Country took on the distinctive identity by which it is known today. As well as retelling the fascinating story of the development of the Black Country, the author introduces the reader to the variety of records that are available for genealogical research, from legal and ecclesiastical archives, birth and death certificates to the records of local government, employers, institutions, clubs, societies and schools.
For over 500 years, between the fourteenth and nineteenth centuries, the Justices of the Peace were the embodiment of government for most of our ancestors. The records they and other county officials kept are invaluable sources for local and family historians, and Stuart Raymond's handbook is the first in-depth guide to them. He shows how and why they were created, what information they contain, and how they can be accessed and used.Justices of the Peace met regularly in Quarter Sessions, judging minor criminal matters, licensing alehouses, paying pensions to maimed soldiers, overseeing roads and bridges, and running gaols and hospitals. They supervised the work of parish constables, highway surveyors, poor law overseers, and other officers. And they kept extensive records of their work, which are invaluable to researchers today. As Stuart Raymond explains, the lord lieutenant, the sheriff, the assize judges, the clerk of the peace, and the coroner, together with a variety of subordinate officials, also played important roles in county government. Most of them left records that give us detailed insights into our ancestors' lives. The wide range of surviving county records deserve to be better known and more widely used, and Stuart Raymond's book is a fascinating introduction to them.
Gill Blanchard's practical and informative handbook will help you to trace your ancestors in the traditional counties of East Anglia Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Essex and it will give you an insight into their lives. As well as guiding the researcher to historical records held in all the relevant archives, she explores the wealth of other resources that add the 'flesh to the bones' of our ancestors' lives. She describes how fascinating information can be discovered about the places they lived in and the important historical events they lived through, and she traces the life stories of notable people from all backgrounds who shaped the regions development over the centuries. Her account highlights the diversity of this part of England but also focuses on its common features and strong sense of identity. It introduces a wide array of research resources that will be revealing for readers who want to find out about their ancestors who lived here.
Almost all of us have a tradesman or craftsman Ð a butcher, baker or candlestick maker Ð somewhere in our ancestry, and Adle Emm's handbook is the perfect guide to finding out about them Ð about their lives, their work and the world they lived in. She introduces the many trades and crafts, looks at their practices and long traditions, and identifies and explains the many sources you can go to in order to discover more about them and their families. ?Chapters cover the guilds, the merchants, shopkeepers, builders, smiths and metalworkers, cordwainers and shoemakers, tailors and dressmakers, coopers, wheelwrights and carriage-makers, and a long list of other trades and crafts. The training and apprenticeships of individuals who worked in these trades and crafts are described, as are their skills and working conditions and the genealogical resources that preserve their history and give an insight into their lives. A chapter covers the general sources that researchers can turn to Ð the National Archives, the census, newspapers, wills, and websites Ð and gives advice on how to use them. ?Adle Emm's introduction will be fascinating reading for anyone who is researching the social or family history of trades and crafts.