Friday, 19 January 2018

Internet Archive, Occupations and Other News - Genealogy Notes 13-20 Jan 2018

One of those weeks where everything seems to happen at once, and none of it planned for. So catching up on a lot of household chores and other bits and pieces today including this blog.


The UK General Register Office is extending their pilot of supplying birth and death certificates in a digital format for a cheaper price. I picked that up in the WDYTYA magazine (read the notice here) and it motivated me to think about a lot of my UK research which was done decades ago. The cheaper price of 6 pounds (less than $10.50) means that I could look into some of the siblings or even kill off a few direct ancestors with a death certificate. They don't give much information but at least I would know cause of death and where.

East Dean is in the hundred
of Thorngate, image Internet
Archive Book Images on Flickr
Which family to review? I have a 4 drawer filing cabinet full of paper folders so I randomly selected drawer 2 and pulled out a file mid way along without looking. I've ended up with my Fox family from East Dean, Hampshire and it has been quite a while since I last opened this folder. Looking forward to some exciting discoveries with this family review.

This image is from the Internet Archive Book Images on Flickr - A history of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, by Herbert Arthur and published in 1900. The Internet Archive is a wonderful place to look for digitised books and images.


My January blog for The In-Depth Genealogist was on The Australian Cemeteries Index  (not to be confused with Australian Cemeteries) and the blog post was picked up in Gail Dever's Creme de la Creme round up for 13 January.

One of the reasons I like the Australian Cemeteries Index is that it includes images of all the graves in the South Brisbane cemetery tombstones.

I mentioned earlier that the Waves in Time conference is being held at Caloundra in May 2019. The website is now up and also their social media accounts on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Check the website out and follow updates via social media. I'm going to a conference committee meeting next week so things are moving along quickly.

The Bridging the Past & Future conference in March in Sydney is fast approaching and speakers have received their Dropbox accounts for their presentations. Due date is 8 February so finishing my two presentations is high priority in the coming week. As usual I have too many slides and keeping to time is a must. Nothing worse than missing the end of someone's talk or seeing them speed through the last slides.

One of the things I like discovering about my ancestors is their occupation as that allows me to think about how they spend their days. One of my Wiltshire ancestors was Robert White and he was a beadle. I had no idea what that was and if you Google you can find various occupation sites but one of my favourites is the Hall Genealogy Website: Old Occupation Names. It's arranged A-Z and beadle is a town crier and parish officer who kept order. From other documents he was also described as a clerk of the church. Possibly what we might call a desk job today, certainly not out in the fields or sweating in the blacksmith's shop.
This week's episode of Who Do You Think You Are Series 13 was on Warwick Davis and I really enjoyed it. He was confronted with an ancestor who committed bigamy and another who was a minstrel who 'blacked up' as he put it. We have to be careful not to put 21st century values on 19th century actions because the world has changed a lot since then.

One of my great great grandmother's was a prostitute and in and out of gaol on numerous occasions. I had the opportunity to sit in a cell in the old women's prison at Boggo Road and it could have been one that she occupied at some point. Her marriage had failed and she was destitute and prostitution has always been one way for a woman to support herself since the beginning of time. My ancestor went on to die a respectable old lady but if she had not had an illegitimate child, I wouldn't be here today.

This was something that Warwick also expressed in the episode. If his ancestor hadn't had the bigamous marriage he wouldn't be here, nor his children. We can't change our ancestors, we just have to accept them, and the times in which they lived. Great episode and I'm looking forward to next week's show.

What's Coming Up?
This coming week I'm determined to do a Trove Tuesday blog, at least one a month for 2018. I've already found the article that I want to write about, a ship that two of my great grandparents arrived on in 1878. It's an illustrated newspaper article that I recently found and want to share with others.

My two presentations for Congress as mentioned above and I should start on my February article for Going In-Depth and another IDG blog post.

Have a great genealogy week and if you are in one of the areas suffering these ongoing heat waves this summer, try and stay cool. Until next week, have fun.


  1. Shauna, Thanks for the Waves in Time mention. I read the sentence with “I’m determined to do a....” and thought that’s me too. So many things we want to do.

  2. Waves in Time sounds appealing. Might see you there.