Monday, 19 September 2011

When a 2 week old child is not a 37 year old woman

So I have my first irrelevant certificate. It was a bit of a long shot, but there we go.

My ancestor, Mary Ballance married into the Pickup family, but died before the 1851 census. I found a Mary Ann Pickup in the correct area that died in 1847 so I decided to order the certificate just in case.

Unfortunately this Pickup is a cousin-in-law (? - I get lost amongst the branches!), but she died aged just two weeks. I notice her name isn't on any ancestry family trees so she is a new addition to the history of that family.

One day I will find more about Mary Ballance, but if anyone thinks they are related to Mary Ann Pickup, daughter of John and Elizabeth from Burton Salmon in Yorkshire let me know and I'll send you the information.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

I know this post was meant to explain my indexing system, but my cards haven't been delivered so no indexing has occurred yet!

Instead I'm doing random searches and I found which appears to be AMAZING!! I've seen it before but assumed (like many things) it was american and of no use to me.

Today I decided to search random ancestors and found their baptism dates! I have looked at some parish records so I know they are correct, so then I decided to look for people that I need information on, and guess what I found? That information!

I'm stunned! Living near London, I'm four hours away from home and the record office I need to visit. While I'm sure I'll still go because looking at the old records is pretty cool, this saves me a lot of time and a lot of confusion, and will hopefully aid my research no end! I definitely recommend it!

I'm also trying to decide whether to buy/use some genealogy software? Preferably it would be free, but can anyone recommend some software I should try out?

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Organisation time!

I'm someone who is a massive fan of organisation so genealogy is a perfect hobby for me as I can split my time between researching and organising!

Today I raided the stationery world and bought index cards, dividers and a box to contain my new system, which consists of index cards and a lever arch folder. Now when I say that, you probably think that's not enough. Well let me explain the whole idea.

At the moment I use Ancestry and their tree to put in all my information. Now ancestry is expensive, so when I return to university next October I probably won't continue the subscription, as the holiday at christmas would be the only time available to do any research.

This means I'm wary of leaving everything on that website should I lose access to the census information, parish records, etc. To combat this I began saving images of the census data for direct relatives, as well as transcribing the info into word. To accompany this I've been writing a document that puts all my research into sentences and adds a bit of flesh and speculation to the dates and places I have discovered.

But again, all of this is on the computer, something which can be quite unfriendly, whether it's as bad as blue screen of death, or something mildly annoying like insisting Heading 3 must be preceded by a page break (this was the irritation that set off my organisation spree).

So while my messy, initial tree will remain on ancestry, and all my documents will be backed up to sites like Dropbox (irritating word file and all), I shall also create an offline, hard copy of my tree, as well as a better, online tree using WikiTree.

My next blog will explain my new system, hopefully with some photos!! Very exciting!

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Good news!

John met his son!

Norman was born April 10th, John died April 25th after 5 days of illness, so they'll have at least been able to spend a few days together.

I had to share the news now I have stopped crying happy tears! :D

In other news, I now have a website that I'm in the process of setting up which will keep me occupied for the rest of today!!

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Certificates and confusion

In the past month I've received four new certificates, with each one being intriguing.

First John Redvers' birth certificate gave me no new information, but it's nice to know his birthday!

However Teresa's certificate had no father listed! Very interesting!

After these certificates I ordered the marriage certificate of Teresa's parents Richard and Catherine (Richard from the marriage certificate and Catherine from the 1911 census). They were married in a church popular with Irish immigrant workers, so maybe there is some truth in the Irish ancestry! It also gave me the names of their fathers, another Richard Wiseman and James Briggs.

I am trying to trace these families but it is proving difficult! Richard seems to have dodged all the census' he could have been in, and there are no records of his death prior to 1911. I have found a Briggs family with the correct name in Middlesex in the 1871 census, but then I can't track them further. Also the 1911 census states Catherine's birthplace as Middlesbrough (but her name is also down as Katherine so I'm not sure I believe it..!).

The final certificate I now own is of John Redvers' father, also a John, who died aged 31 of pneumonia when his son was 4 years old.

The next certificate on order is for Norman Sanderson, son of John, who was possibly born after his father died. I had to order the certificate to know for sure if baby Norman met his dad.

I am currently writing up my findings in a more formal way which is focusing my research and getting me to check and verify everything I have done previously. Best get back to it!!

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Trip to a cemetery

Last weekend me and the parents went up into the North York Moors, specifically Egton, to try and find physical proof of the Elders side of the family. I've found generations of the family in the village, and a trip to the cemetery enabled me to see the graves of other families from the village, but no members of the Elders clan.

I wonder if perhaps they were buried on their farm, but I doubt that was the case. More likely, they didn't have the money to pay for a gravestone, or like their descendants, were too cheap to pay for one!

Nevertheless, it was a disappointment to not find them, and leaves me at a loss as to where to go next with my research. I'm waiting for the arrival of my next two certificates, and then hopefully I can look into the Wiseman side of the family, as I believe the Elders side to be exhausted, at least for now anyways.

Friday, 8 July 2011


I got my first marriage certificate sent through the post yesterday, but it's thrown up a few questions.

My great-grandmother Teresa Wiseman has been a problem from the start. I've been told she worked in Edinburgh at one point, and possibly has Irish roots, but I had discovered a Teresa Wiseman in Middlesbrough with parents John and Catherine, however the marriage certificate for Teresa and my great-grandfather John Redvers lists her father as Dick Wiseman (deceased). I can't find a Richard Wiseman in the right area and the right age that has died, so I'm very confused!

John Redvers' father John is listed as a Commercial Traveller, and also deceased. I had his death as 1904, so that I agree with, but I believed his occupation to be a secretary to a company, as listed in the 1901 census.

To try and clarify both of these problems I have ordered the birth certificates for both people. This will give me their parents names and give me a better place to continue my research. I'd hate for all my research that I've done so far to have gone to waste!!

Monday, 4 July 2011

First Post!

Hi everyone! Welcome to my new blog!!

My name is Katelyn and I've just started researching my family tree. I recently visited the local county records office (I'm from the UK) and was the youngest person researching by about 40 years!

This led me to search for any other young genealogists (I'm 20) and there was nothing online (in the UK - there's plenty in the US). So I've set up this blog so other young people will hopefully read this and perhaps comment, letting me know I'm not alone!

I also plan to use the blog to document my discoveries and possibly ask questions of other genealogists to see if you can help! Very excited to begin the journey!