|Reading room at Queensland State Archives, June 2016|
A new edition of Family History on the Cheap is now out which makes the third new edition I have done for this year. The others were What Was The Voyage Really Like? and Trove: Discover Discover Genealogy Treasure in the National Library of Australia. It is easier to update a guide than to write one from the beginning.
A while back I ordered an 1849 marriage certificate from the UK even though I knew most of the information. The names of the two witnesses don't mean anything to me at the moment. The real benefit was in the fathers' occupations. I knew one was a bailiff from the census records but the marriage certificate says William Adkins was the bailiff to the Marquess of Hertford. A quick look at Wikipedia and I found out all about the Marquess of Hertford and their property.
I then decided to look at Findmypast for British newspapers to see if their was anything on my person and I was rewarded with a brief death notice. He died at Arrow on 14 Oct 1859 of apoplexy and he was 'for a long time house steward to the Marquis of Hertford, aged 77 years'. The following year his son in law Paul Spencer as executor of William's will, called for any creditors. The other executor was William's son also called William but he had predeceased his father. So now I have more information on the son and a will to follow up.
The other father was Joseph Spencer (father of Paul in the last para) and his occupation was Inland Revenue Officer but those records are not online and no overall index for a quick lookup. I have the National Archives UK guide to tracing them so I will need to engage a researcher in London. We know nothing about Joseph apart from his name as we have never been able to locate him in the census. We have his family and it is not until the 1861 census that his wife describes herself as a widow. Perhaps his job took him away from home on census nights? It is too common a name to locate a death certificate without some parameters so his occupation may be our best chance to learn more.
One certificate at just under $20 and lots more to follow up on two family lines. Definitely worth getting!
The other thing grabbing my attention this week is National Family History Month and I have been busy organising the launch over in Perth. In a blog post Meet NFHM 2016 Major Sponsors I looked at the sponsors who help keep NFHM going. In future posts I will also introduce our prize sponsors and don't forget to add your events to our web calendar. Remember the early bird prize for societies ends on 30 June, don't miss out. Full details on the Sponsors page.
I'm in the last stages of finishing up the Health Records course which is part of the Australian Certificate with the National Institute for Genealogical Studies. It has been a fascinating exercise and I have learnt lots of interesting things along the way. The last part of any project is always the longest for me as I keep tinkering with the modules but it is due 30 June so that's focusing my attention.
I also want to update my database and files with all the new information from Queensland State Archives and plan another trip. Trying to file as I go instead of piling up for later. I need to apply that to my journals and magazines, both print and electronic. Perhaps I need more coffee breaks or is it that there are so many good things to read?
Until next time, have a great genealogy week.