Thursday, 31 March 2011

31st: Originals revamp

My Originals sub site has been republished to use the newer descendant chart features now available from the program I use to generate these pages from my database (Second Site and TMG respectively).

The actual content has not changed, other than Simon ANDREWS' photo now including a credit to Janice (who provided the photo), this having been missed when I cropped the image for the web, and a few sources citations being tidied to better reflect my current citing practices (I never will finish the umpteen years of clean up needed on my older data).

For the new charts (see lhs menu under Dramatis Personae), have fun trying out the expand/collapse feature to help get a better overall picture of where people fit in relation to others, eg collapse all then click on the + next to the spouse to get just the 1st generation.

Those actually included on the site are highlighted, so a quick scroll down the page will show you those on the tree that you can find more about.

Sunday, 20 March 2011

20th: Ahhh Jim lad

Harry drew my attention to another article in the Scotsman, this time one claiming that Jim HAWKINS of "Kidnapped" fame was based on a real life chap married to a Margaret WIGHT of Jedburgh.
Yes, there was a Margaret HAWKINS nee WIGHT living in Bristo Place in Edinburgh, and yes she was born in Jedburgh (dtr of William WIGHT, millwright, and Janet RUSSELL, William being the son of Robert WIGHT and Janet BRACK, who married 1777 in Melrose), no immediately obvious connection to our WIGHTs.
Hubby Jim HAWKINS must have made quite a lasting impression on the people quoted, as by my calcs, and searches, Kidnapped was published 1886, and Jim doesn't appear with Margaret in any census, Edinburgh or otherwise, starting from 1841 when she is at home in Jedburgh with her sisters, and two daughters (born Kelso and Ancrum), and showing up in Edinburgh from 1851 (but not at Bristo Place yet).

Saturday, 19 March 2011

19th: Coincidence time

While on the phone to a descendant of the family that includes James FAIRBAIRN, the engraver of all those family crests, an email arrived in from Australia to ask me if I could help with a search for James Henry, son of a James, believed to be connected to the above engraver chap.
Yes I could, James Henry was the grandson of said engraver, and I'd stumbled across him when trawling Australian newspapers earlier this year, becoming curious as to why a chap in Australia had a son in Derbyshire.
I'd only figured out the connection to the crest chap as a result of that investigation, back in January.

The coincidences didn't end there.
The chap I was chatting too used to live in the same town as one of my FAIRBAIRN "cousins" so I asked if he had known him (Clarence Stuart). No, he didn't think so, the only other one he knew was "Mac" from the bowling club, his wife was an artist.
"We have one of her paintings here". It was a small town, and it seemed unlikely that there would be yet another FAIRBAIRN, so he went and checked the signature of the painting, sure enough, Eileen M FAIRBAIRN, so "Mac" was Clarence.

Thursday, 17 March 2011


Further to the FAMILTON activity of yesterday, a bit more digging on the Northumberland families unearthed a John FAMILTON marrying a Margaret SENGERWOOD, or so the FamilySearch's England Marriages, 1538–1973 told me.
FindMyPast however has her as LEDGERWOOD, under which name she is indeed shown in assorted census records.
As my FAMILTON connection is on the branch of my tree including RICHARDSON/RUNCIMAN/LEDGERWOOD, I did a bit more digging to see if there might be a connection.
Jury still out, but I did quickly get back to Scotland from Northumberland as her father John LEDGERWOOD was born 1816 in Yetholm, to John LEDGERWOOD and Jean/Jane RIDDEL; John Snr being the son of William LEDGERWOOD or LIDGERTWOOD and Janet STEVENSON. I was interested to note that the 1816 John had a sister Helen/Ellen who married a James RICHARDSON, parents as yet unknown, but born Birgham around 1825, and emigrated to Melbourne, Australia on the "Marian Moore" in 1853.
My LEDGERWOODs hail from Jedburgh, with James, brother of my Walter, being tenant at Lanton in 1714, around which time Walter was at Hundalee.
Walter's last two known children were baptised at Eckford.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

16th: John or Albert?

Thought I was onto a lead for some modern day descendants of my rather distant FAMILTON forebears.
One branch had ended up in Racine, Wisconsin, and I'd found what looked like the son John of the family living in Minneapolis in the 1920 census with a wife Margaret, and children Mabel and Winston. Age right, birth state right, father shown as born Scotland, occupation not out of the question.
But no. Tracking back on Winston, the 1900 census had the family as Albert B & Margaret HAMILTON instead of John and Margaret!
Sure enough, FamilySearch Minnesota BDM indexes show Albert as his name, and a family tree on ancestry that cited sources, agreed, and gave his pedigree - not the John I was looking for after all.

This activity being driven by a phone call from Val nee FAMILTON a few days ago to introduce herself.
Her call had prompted me to review where I'd got to with the FAMILTON DNA project, and a few hurried additions to the patriarchs page and a bit of a tidy up led me to add a post to that project diary, and cast around for likely new candidates to prove the assorted lines (my Earlston weavers, the Ancrum weavers, and the Northumberland based families) were related, despite the lack of paper trail.
Love to hear from any direct male line FAMILTONs who may be willing to participate.

Friday, 11 March 2011

11th: BIDGOODs

Contact from a Ross in Australia asking what I knew about the Richard BIDGOODs in my tree.
He had a Richard, supposedly from New Jersey, and 2nd son of a Richard BIDGOOD to try and track, and the nearest candidates in his search were my extended BIDGOOD family there.
Not that there was a Richard, 2nd son of a Richard, in the expected timeframe to marry in Australia in 1884.
Nearest was Richard son of Jacob, who had not been traced in America beyond 1880.
As the 1900 census implied 3 of Jacob and Jane's children had died by then, that may have been his fate.
Not so.
With all the records now available on FamilySearch I was able to identify several births, marriages and deaths for the family from the New Jersey records indexed there, and Richard wasn't amongst them.
However, the Australian chap being investigated was several years older, although well within the normal error rate for forgetful ancestors who never seem to know their ages, and there were still rather too many unanswered questions.
Although Ross is still none the wiser, the Richard son of Jacob and Jane does look to have survived, and continued living in New Jersey as I found a mis-indexed record (as MEYER !!), in the 1900, and subsequent, censuses for Rockaway, New Jersey.
Thankfully a daughter was indexed correctly as BIDGOOD, which helped find him.
Several new twigs will therefore appear in my next WorldConnect db update, which should be soon.
Related names that have turned up in this bout of research include a wonderfully named Seaman Garfield DOGGETT, with son Seaman Leroy DOGGETT.

This activity did make me realise that I hadn't tracked several of the family still in the UK in the 1911 census.
This time round, I've found a few wills and deaths, included one registered Lanchester (Durham), indexed as Lancaster!

Thursday, 10 March 2011

10th: Harrow vs Harlow

It really does pay to check the originals.

Two of the marriages for the ANDREWS line I'm working through at the moment were indexed as being registered in Harlow, Essex, which seemed a tad off the expected area of Harrow, Middlesex.
Eileen assured me the marriages did indeed happen in Harrow, so I checked findmypast to see what they said about them.
fmp did indeed have them both indexed, correctly from the image, as being registered in Harrow, not Harlow.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011


I shouldn't be getting sidetracked from assorted annual accounts, but this is so much more interesting.

Ancestry told me that someone had saved a record I'd used to someone in their tree.
That started me off on quite an update binge (still incomplete) of two lines of my very extended and extensive Devon families.
As both husband and wife were CREBERs, chances are they were related, but it was soon apparent that this brought together descendants of both my BARTER/KING and PIKE families.
I'd not got round to tracing either beyond the 1861 census, so hadn't worked out they'd married, thank you to bonsaitree's Green aka Creber tree on ancestry and his/her work there.

Husband Thomas CREBER and wife Mary CREBER were 1st cousins once removed, 3rd cousins and 4th cousins once removed.
And as I then documented their children, noticed that a daughter, Annie Elizabeth, had married a George PEARSE, so further lights started flashing.
Sure enough, he was already in my database, with a CREBER mother, so they were 1st cousins, 1st cousins once removed, and 4th cousins.