Friday, 27 May 2011

27th: DAWEs today

Noticed a posting in my Guestbook re the burial at sea of Maria Jane TRUDGEON, formerly PRYOR, nee DAWE, which made me realise I'd not checked for births in the family of her daughter Charity (married Albert BARDEN). Bit of a surprise to find 11 children registered in New South Wales.
The DAWE descendant chart has been updated to include these additional children.

Forgot to mention a couple of days ago that the McEWAN chart had been updated after the recent McEWAN activity.

You'll need to select Expand All to get the full chart in this new interactive format.

After quite a break working on my own extended tree, it's back to FAIRBAIRN DNA, with some new results in (and the desktop not yet fully back in one piece with all the data in place from the backups).

Thursday, 26 May 2011

26th: Ross & Cromarty to Winnipeg

Nearly a year on since Ross & Cromarty rose to prominence in my Border SINTONs (see prior post).
This time the activity was prompted by contact from a researcher of the Canadian family of Margaret McRAE & William ROSS. Her research had the exact birthdate for her Margaret as "mine" and wondered if her Canadian family might be a match.
Looks like it to me, not just from the exact birth date, but also from immigration records showing Margaret was from "Ross", when she followed William to Manitoba in 1906, and two of her sisters being known to also have emigrated (1908).
So the family of James & Margaret (WILKIE) SINTON continues to grow and spread.
The grandson of Margaret's she was doing the research for is now in touch, so more updates will no doubt occur.
When Margaret died (in Vancouver), her obituary apparently mentioned she had family in Scotland and Eastern Canada, all yet to be identified, particularly which others of the family emigrated to Canada and stayed in the East.
The SINTON descendant chart is being updated as research progresses (click on the + signs to expand the chart and view John's descendants as I currently believe them to be).

Wednesday, 25 May 2011


Still digging away at verifying the link back from my McEWAN descendant Sarah Margery JOHNSTON who married a George Miles/Myles TURNBULL, back up George's TURNBULLs to, supposedly, John TURNBULL and Bessie FAMILTON, the latter being of Earlston.
Admit I'm having a bit of trouble with the chain of evidence.

Can spot John and Bessie (FAMILTON) TURNBULL having children in Melrose, with John saying he was a weaver of Gattonside at his 1718 marriage.
Can spot what looks like their son Thomas marrying Peggy FORSAN and having several children in Melrose, including a John in 1769.

The trail back from George Miles TURNBULL reaches a Thomas TURNBULL married to Helen TAIT, with Thomas stated as born Melrose on both 1851 and 1861 census records, about 1804/5.
I've not seen his 1891 NZ death cert (which implies a birth abt 1801), but at least one tree assigns him to a John and Jane/Jean (CURRIE) TURNBULL, who married/called banns at Cavers (John) and Eckford (Jane) and were having children baptised 1794 (Gattonside) through 1806, but with no Thomas recorded.
The Melrose OPRs also record the burial of a John TURNBULL, feuar of Gattonside, aged 73 in 1827 (so born abt 1754), who would seem unlikely to be the 1769 baptism of John son of Thomas and Peggy (FORSAN) TURNBULL, who didn't marry until 1766.

There is a 1753 baptism in Melrose of a John to John TURNBUL & Janet USHER of Gattonside, witnesses James & John BOSTON, which surname also features as witness to the 1794 baptism of John and Jane (CURRIE) TURNBULL's daughter Janet in 1794, and as cautioner for the 1743 marriage of John TURNBULL to Janet USHER (both of Melrose).

Anyone else interested in these TURNBULLs with any comments? Until more info is available, I'll disconnect the link in my WorldConnect database LornaHenderson.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

24th: Conversions

The catch up has been hindered a tad by the rebuild of my computer, but now that I'm starting to pop the data back onto it, I found a file I never could read when I first received it.
A recent link in something that went past (sorry, I didn't note the source, tut tut), had mentioned a web site that converts any file - check out Online Convert
Worked a treat for me.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

How to pass time on your military service

The recent string of coincidences which had lead to the TURNBULL/FAMILTON connection (still being investigated/validated) mentioned a few posts ago did lead to further work on my McEWAN relations.
This including catching up briefly with a fellow researcher of the NZ line.
It had been so long since we were in contact that her email address bounced, so a phone call later I was in possession of a new email address and a hint that she'd found James in the 1861 census in Glasgow, as a Chelsea Pensioner, and therefore on Findmypast's military records.
That was enough to set me off again.
What she didn't mention was that James was discharged from the army as "unfit for further service" and "not in possession of a good conduct badge".
These comments no doubt being at least in part because of his four courts martial (one Battalion, one District and two Regimental) and at least four spells of imprisonment, one for forty days. Two of the causes were unstated, but one was for absence without leave, and one for habitual drunkenness.
All in all, he spent 18 yrs and 177 days in the 26th Regiment of Foot, seeing overseas service in the East Indies and China (Wikipedia shows that this regiment was part of the first of the Opium wars in the 1840s, which would fit).
He was one of two James McEWANs from Perthshire of an age in Glasgow and I chased the other one around the records for a while thinking it was him (both had McCOLL connections, either by marriage or residence), even though he gave his birthplace as Port of Monteith instead of Kincardine.
Found that the wrong one's mother was a HENDERSON, and there were FERGUSON connections, which seemed a bit much of a coincidence, but I couldn't spot any links and went back to the miscreant James instead.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

17th: Catching up even more

I'm sure it (this catch up mode) will be temporary, but for now, my December edits to published data have been uploaded to OneGreatFamily
(see this prior post for explanation of what/how), and my WorldConnect database LornaHenderson, which holds all my dead rellies and connections BDM data, has also been updated - so the links from the connections over the last week will now show updated info.

Recovery from my PC woes is proceeding, but not without its dramas, of course.
Desktop now working, but not all programs yet re-installed, so not fully functional.

Friday, 13 May 2011

More connections

Yes the LEITH women noted a day or two ago were related, aunt/niece.
And the connections continued!

Sarah Abernethay LEITH married Thomas JOHNSTON, one of my McEWAN rellies.
Their daughter Sarah Margery JOHNSTON married a George Miles, (later Myles) TURNBULL.
An ancestry tree has this family, and shows George's TURNBULL ancestors as being of Melrose, with, wait for it, John TURNBULL and Bessie FAMILTON, who married at Earlston in 1718, at the end of the tree.

Bessie is highly likely to be one of my Earlston FAMILTONs, but we'll likely never prove that given we're back at the start of the Earlston registers here (at least I think we are, yet to fully re-check that bit).
I've not yet checked the reputed link from George's grdfather Thomas TURNBULL (b. abt 1801 Melrose, ROX, d. 1891 Georgefield, Waipahi, Otago) back to John and Bessie (FAMILTON) TURNBULL, but do note that John and Bessie's family were all baptised in Melrose from 1721 to 1737 and John was living at Gattonside when he married Bessie.

A snippet from the 1899 NZ obit of Helen TURNBULL nee TAIT, wife of Thomas, and grdmother of George Miles TURNBULL:
"... born in Berwickshire, Scotland, on the 5th July, 1814, and, with her husband and family, came to New Zealand in the ship Vicksburg in the year 1867 ... the deceased's father, Joseph Tait, an influential farmer on the Borders; sold to Lord Polworth the sheep that formed the nucleus of the world-famed flock of Border Leicesters."

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Connections, connections

This HUTTON trail is proving rather fascinating.
John Mitchell HUTTON, son of Robert HUTTON and Catherine MITCHELL shows up on the 1905-6 Electoral Roll in Woodhaugh, Dunedin.
Woodhaugh is where my grandfather Archibald HENDERSON and wife Agnes Manson DAVIDSON set up home in 1908, Archie having moved down Leith Valley slightly from the farm at Helensvale.
I wonder if they actually knew each other, and knew that they were connected, albeit not actually related?
If so, it's a real pity that they didn't pass such information on to their descendants as Margaret McGREGOR nee HENDERSON's fate would have been discovered much longer ago.

The investigation into the NZ HUTTON family is proving to have some other interesting connections.
One Robert HUTTON, civil servant of Wellington, and son of John Mitchell HUTTON, married a Mary Jane Margory/Marjery GEORGESON.
As that is one of my Caithness surnames I did a bit of digging to see where they might come from.
Her father looks like he'll be a Peter GEORGESON, baker in Bluff around 1896 to 1905 (at least), and of Shetlands origin.

That side-track parked I noted that Mary's mother appeared to be a Marjery Morton LEITH, and of an age and place, to possibly be connected to one Sarah Abernethy LEITH who married Thomas JOHNSTON, a descendant of James McEWAN, brother of Margaret McEWAN who married Archibald HENDERSON.
I can spot at least one tree on ancestry who has both Sarah Abernethy and Marjery Morton LEITH in their tree (not sisters), so will dig a little further.

Further connections exist in that descendants of the above James McEWAN were also in Port Chalmers (Helen MILLAR & Arthur FOORD) around the time the HUTTONs were.

Having NZ electoral rolls on ancestry is great!
All of this is taking my mind off a dead Win XP machine - yet another batch of windows XP updates has done for it so it's having to be rebuilt - for the second time in a year.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Linda lucks out - again

Another of Linda's hunches is looking good.
Shortly before heading off on an overseas trip 5 years ago I was contacted by Linda innocently asking if her husbands ancestor Margaret HENDERSON, married McGREGOR, just might happen to be the sister of my James HENDERSON whose fate was unknown to me.
This resulted in a feverish bout of activity, when I should have been packing, with emails and discoveries flying back and forth across the ether finding out all sorts of things we didn't previously know about each other's relations.

This time round it was a tentative investigation as to whether or not one of the HUTTON tribe, Robert, brother of the James HUTTON who married Margaret McGREGOR, daughter of the above Margaret nee HENDERSON.
Looking good. Despite their ages being rather incorrect in the Scottish censuses, by the time their deaths are recorded in the NZ indexes, this has been remedied.
Dunfermline to Port Chalmers, with a few detours to Bluff, Lyttelton and Wellington thrown in to keep us on our toes.

Saturday, 7 May 2011

7th: exceeding their brief

I'm getting rather annoyed with at the moment.
Some years ago now I finally succumbed to keeping several trees on ancestry, liking in particular the wonderful hints for sources that may be for the people in the trees.
As I research and find someone/something, I generally now pop the results of those searches into whichever tree is appropriate - keeping my master copy of all data on my own pc still, in TMG.
Of late I've noticed that something seems to have changed with how they treat the input suggestions for the data from a source you've just examined and chosen to attach to someone in your tree.
Instead of limiting the information supplied on the lhs of the add screen to what is available from that source, they seem to now also scoop up whatever other information they seem to have for what looks to them like the same person, and present it in the same add screen, with no indication that it has come from some other source, ie one that you may or may not have viewed, and certainly isn't the one currently being used to add data to your tree.
I think this is grossly misleading, and likely to lead to all sorts of stupid errors in already error-prone trees.
Admit to not having selected the death information I was presented with to see what source it would have attached (I was adding data from some Canadian WWI attestation papers and was presented with death information for the spouse, and a string of children, the only connection any of this had to the source document being the spouse's name as next of kin).

Thursday, 5 May 2011

5th: Up to Nov at last

Catch up mode continues.
OneGreatFamily now includes all my updates on people in my database edited up to Nov 2010 !! (This is a subscription site - I particularly like the way I can quickly find other people researching the same families)

The process I follow for this is to select everyone in my database marked as checked for publication and edited during the month I'm about to upload - my own relations, and the FAIRBAIRN and RUNCIMAN families I research for the one name studies and dna projects.
To put them in context and enable them to hopefully be linked correctly to any existing families already on OneGreatFamily, I then add their spice, and 1 generation of ancestors.
Then I recheck that I really do want to publish all of those people, deleting from the list those where I'm not adding to the sum of genealogical knowledge at all.

It's an interesting way to re-discover bits of research left hanging as I got sidetracked onto following some lead or other instead of finishing off my research, eg connecting a sister to the same parents as the brother she was with in a census, or realising that I'd not finished checking off BDM and census data for whichever family.

So yes, up to November is now there, but the initial set of people from December is shrinking by my May updates to finish off some unfinished research.

Monday, 2 May 2011

Snippets here, snippets there

I'm in catch up mode.
Emails from February last year have even been actioned (but not necessarily all the ones in between still awaiting attention)!
My WorldConnect database LornaHenderson has been updated with all the current BDM data on the rellies and their connections, so that's the last two months of updates published with all the snippets that others have contacted me with, plus whatever I've worked on over that time, whatever that all was.
The most recent was the WOONTON/RICHARDSON info Wayne sent me back in Feb 2010, supplemented by some more digging around in the relatively recently available Australia BDM data on ancestry.