Tuesday, 22 April 2014

FindmyPast - the How To video

FindmyPast (www.findmypast.co.uk) has created a short video to try to explain the features of the new version of the site, a radically changed beast which has alienated many long term users. It can be accessed here:



(Also on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOEi_nLLkRw)

The first minute is wasted restating the FindmyPast corporate line on just why this is so good and why the changes had to be done, after which there is then a walk through of some features - you may need to watch this a couple of times, it goes quite fast. Narrator Myko Clelland ends almost apologetically explaining that "new FindmyPast is very different but it is the same old friend" and states that the firm is "proud to be part of this passionate genealogy community".

Changes are being applied to the site to try to make it more fit for purpose, but I suspect there is still a hell of a long way to go to regain the trust of users. I've just checked, and my own personal bugbear remains what the company has done in terms of the source citations that have now been placed online for the Scottish censuses, which - not to put too fine a point on it - are basically utter crap, meaningless and completely unfit for purpose (see my recent post at http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/2014/04/findmypast-scottish-censuses.html). Are there actually any genealogists advising on these things at FMP Towers?

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

Recent parish records updates at TheGenealogist

TheGenealogist (www.thegenealogist.co.uk) has recently added to its parish records collections for England and Wales.

29,000 additional baptisms from Worcestershire have been uploaded (in partnership with Malvern Family History Society), covering 1544-1891, and additional records for Essex ( 388,100 records), Kent (167,222 records), Leicestershire (2,365 records) and Monmouthshire (1,226 records).

A full lost of parish holdings on the site is accessible at
http://www.thegenealogist.co.uk/nameindex/ai_content.php?show_cat=9#includes

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

Mortonhall Crematorium report given to Edinburgh City Council

There's been a bit of a local scandal here in Scotland concerning Mortonhall Crematorium in Edinburgh, and the disposal of babies cremated remains without their bereaved parents' knowledge. The BBC has the story at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-27118451.

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Next of Kin WW1 exhibition starts in Edinburgh

The National War Museum in Edinburgh is hosting an exhibition entitled Next of Kin from today until March 2015, after which it will tour around Scotland until 1917, visiting eight venues - these are Dumfries Museum, Rozelle House (Ayr), Hawick Museum, Low Parks Museum (South Lanarkshire), Inverness Museum and Art Gallery, Perth Museum and Art Gallery, Grampian Transport Museum (Aberdeenshire) and Orkney Museum. For details on the exhibition visit https://www.nms.ac.uk/our_museums/war_museum/next_of_kin.aspx.

The BBC has an article showing some of the exhibits at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-27021381.

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

Surnames database project reaches 45,000 names

The Family Names of the United Kingdom Project, currently under way at my old university in Bristol, the University of the West of England, has now researched some 45,000 names to date in its project to document British surnames across time, completing the first phase of the project due to be published in 2016.

The project was recently revised and given additional funding to include surnames for which there are still at least 20 people bearing it as a minimum, as opposed to the previous 100.

The full update is available at both www.medievalists.net/2014/04/14/database-uk-surnames-reached-45000-entries-dating-back-middle-ages/ and www1.uwe.ac.uk/cahe/research/bristolcentreforlinguistics/fanuk.aspx.

(With thanks to Medievalists.net)

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

SAFHS conference 2014

A quick reminder that the Scottish Association of Family History Societies (SAFHS) is holding its 25th annual conference next Saturday 26th April in Dunfermline - full details are accessible at www.safhs.org.uk/silver.asp, and the conference booking form at www.safhs.org.uk/images/2014/delegate.pdf.

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

Shropshire parish records on FindmyPast

Parish records for Shropshire are now available on FindmyPast, via http://search.findmypast.co.uk/historical-records?SearchedRecordsetName=shropshire&Region=World - collections available include banns, baptisms, marriages and burials.

(With thanks to email from Steve of the Atcherley one name study at www.atcherley.org.uk/wordpress/)

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Centre for the History of Medicine in Ireland podcasts

The Centre for the History of Medicine in Ireland has a series of podcasts available online for free at https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/centre-for-history-medicine/id397741868?mt=2 - the latest is entitled Adelaide Hospital & upholding Protestant healthcare in Ireland,1950-1972, a talk given by Dr Robbie Roulston.

Other recent talks include Rhythm and blues - natural family planning in Ireland (1930s-1980s), by Prof. Mary Daly of UCD, and Irish Medical Student Culture, Gentility and Professional Identity, c.1830-1900, by Dr Laura Kelly of the CHOMI and UCD. In total there are 47 lectures currently available.

(With thanks to @CHOMIreland and @BelfastSickPoor)

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

Accessing records of same sex marriage in Scotland

The National Records of Scotland has put a notice up to say that the Marriage and Civil Partnership (Scotland) Act 2014 received Royal Assent on 12 March 2014, and that it believes that same sex marriages will essentially begin to happen in the country by the end of the year (and about time too!). The story is available at http://www.nrscotland.gov.uk/news/2014/news-on-same-sex-marriage-in-scotland.

There is of course a genealogical perspective on this story also, and I have just sent an email to the NRS to ask how the records of same sex marriages will be made accessible at the ScotlandsPeople Centre (www.scotlandspeoplehub.gov.uk). Although there is an online closure period for marriage records on the ScotlandsPeople website that are less than 75 years old, more recent records for marriages are available for consultation at the centre in Edinburgh, and across the country at facilities with access to the same database - usually within a few months of them being recorded (with indexes becoming available much more quickly).

I am assuming that as same sex marriage is essentially the same thing in legal terms now, that equal provision will be made available to access such records - but will they be made available through the current marriage database, or through some other facility, and when?

When I get an update, I'll let you know!

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.

World Archives Project - 5 years on

Today sees the fifth anniversary of the World Archives Project from Ancestry (http://community.ancestry.co.uk/wap/dashboard.aspx), the initiative that allows crowdsourcing as a means to index Ancestry's rapidly growing collection of digitised material (and at a much higher standard than was previously the case).

The site's blog provides an update on where the project now stands, with some impressive stats - you can read it at http://blogs.ancestry.com/worldarchivesproject/?p=2087.

English projects currently active through the initiative:
  • London, England, Selected Poor Law Removal and Settlement Records, 1828-1930 (Update)
  • West Yorkshire, England, Quarter Session Orders, 1637-1914
  • Liverpool, United Kingdom, Crew Lists 1860-1919
  • Wells, Somerset, England, Bishop's Transcripts
  • West Yorkshire, England, Alehouse Licences, 1771-1962

Chris

Now available for UK research is the new second edition of the best selling Tracing Your Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians. And for those wishing to take Scottish ancestral research a bit further, my next Pharos course, Scotland 1750-1850: Beyond the Old Parish Records, commences May 14th 2014.