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2019 Articles

Exploring the Island at Twickenham 24th December 2019

This past summer I was in Surrey. I had a chance to explore the surrounding area and as it was hot that summer day, a walk down by the River Thames on the bank opposite Twickenham was top of my list. As I strolled along the path, through the trees the fascinating Eel Pie Island came into view.

Using War Memorials to research ancestors from the First World War 20th December 2019

The Pease family are business people associated with Darlington, County Durham, and North Yorkshire whose business roots go back to Edward Pease (1767–1858), the railway promoter and woollen manufacturer. By the time of the First World War, Pease & Partners Limited of Darlington were owners of a number of mines, quarries and other works all over County Durham and Teesside.

Bedfordshire Tithe Records pinpoint ancestors' homes 26th November 2019

The great advantage of this recordset is that it is not just the wealthy landowners who are caught by this study. A great example of this is in the Parish of Turvey, Bedfordshire that was surveyed in June 1837. If we zoom in on this village we can see a large number of fields, some pastures, plantations and a settlement of houses in the village itself.

Hackney Landowner and Occupier records and the Highwayman's Inn 8th November 2019

Much of Hackney had already been built up by 1910-1915. However we can still find some green space that harks back to when Hackney had been a village on the outskirts of the metropolis.

Warwickshire Colour Tithe Records discover the house that went to America 23rd October 2019

The addition of colour tithe maps for Warwickshire to the previously published greyscale maps on TheGenealogist, all of which are linked to their accompanying apportionment schedules, allows family historians to discover where ancestors lived in the early Victorian period. The plots of land owned and occupied in this Midlands county vary from small cottages and fields to large mansions and the castle in Warwick itself.

North Buckinghamshire Maps reveal Bletchley Park 10th October 2019

The famous Bletchley Park is a 19th-century mansion and estate near Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire, that is best known as the site for British codebreaking during World War II when the estate housed the British Government Code and Cypher School (GC&CS), which regularly penetrated the secret communications of the Axis Powers – most importantly the German Enigma and Lorenz ciphers.

Using Regimental Histories to discover your ancestor’s war 26th September 2019

The First World War Regimental histories that are available on TheGenealogist within its Military records collection, can reveal some fascinating details for family historians tracing their ancestors in World War I.

Landowner records on TheGenealogist locate the real Downton Abbey 23rd September 2019

While the fictional Downton Abbey is set in Yorkshire, the real life house that stands in for it on TV and now on the silver screen is Highclere Castle in Hampshire. Now in the custodianship of the 8th Earl of Carnarvon it has been for generations the home of the Earl’s family.

Find ancestors in education records 12th September 2019

While many of our ancestors may not have had the educational opportunities that are the norm today, with higher education available to a wider cross section, sometimes we can come across an ancestor in our research who was privileged enough to go to a Public School or to have attended university. In cases such as this then we can immediately turn to a set of records on TheGenealogist that can add a bit of depth to a family story.

Mark Wright 9th September 2019

Mark Wright, who was born January 20 1987, rose to fame as one of the original reality stars in The Only Way Is Essex. Married to Michelle Keegan, who had her own family history explored by the Who Do You Think You Are? programme in the last series, this year it is his turn to have his ancestors researched.

Finding your London ancestors in the 1910 Land Tax records 30th August 2019

Researching an ancestor in the decennial census collection will normally provide us with an address at which they lived – unless they were away from home on census night – and we get important information about their occupation as well as the names of their family.

Sharon Osbourne 30th August 2019

Sharon Osbourne, well known on both sides of the Atlantic, divides her time between her homes in Los Angeles, USA – where she lives with her larger than life rock star husband Ozzy Osbourne – and England, where both she and Ozzy were born. Sharon is eager to find out about her family history in the country where she grew up.

Paul Merton 23rd August 2019

Comedian and Have I Got News For You captain Paul Merton was born in Fulham, South London on 9 July 1957. He is one of two children born to Albert and Mary Ann Martin and although known by his stage name of Paul Merton, his real name is Paul James Martin. Paul was close to both of his late parents, particularly his Irish mum whom he credits with encouraging him along his career path.

Katherine Ryan 16th August 2019

Comedian, writer, presenter and actress Katherine Ryan was born in Canada in June 1983. She has appeared on British panel shows including Mock the Week, Never Mind the Buzzcocks and Have I Got News for You. She moved to England in 2007 and now lives in London where she's raising her English-born daughter, Violet. Katherine is determined to find something in her family background that her daughter Violet will respect and she assumes that if she traces back a little way in her maternal line that she will find English ancestors.

Kate Winslet 9th August 2019

The 16th UK series of Who Do You Think You Are? has some really fascinating stories to tell. One which many of us will enjoy is that of the Oscar-winning actor Kate Winslet’s very personal journey into her family history. The research into her family has provided a rollercoaster of emotions for her to cope with ranging from elation, pride, anger and sadness. It has revealed that the award winning actress has some fascinating forebears in her family tree that she is rightly very proud of.

Family History Shows 7th August 2019

Many of us enjoy researching family history – but when the sun comes out then we may want to get out in the fresh air and leave our research behind. So what if I told you there was a way of combining both being outdoors, family history, and earning rewards for your time?

Volunteers find Family History rewarding 1st August 2019

Many of us enjoy researching family history – but when the sun comes out then we may want to get out in the fresh air and leave our research behind. So what if I told you there was a way of combining both being outdoors, family history, and earning rewards for your time?

Jack and Michael Whitehall 31st July 2019

The unique double-act of father and son, Jack and Michael Whitehall, are instantly recognizable as the chalk-and-cheese comedy act seen recently in Jack Whitehall: Travels With My Father. Now, in a first for Who Do You Think You Are? father and son join forces to delve into their shared family history. Michael, one time producer, talent agent, author and television personality draws attention to the fact that he's getting on in years. He feels it's time Jack knew about his family history.

Naomie Harris OBE 27th July 2019

Naomie recently became interested in her family's history after her mum gave her a DNA kit to do. The results revealed that Naomie was 48% Nigerian and so the story of her ancestors is almost certain to involve the slave trade. "I'm expecting to find, obviously, slavery because that's how we ended up in the West Indies."

Daniel Radcliffe 16th July 2019

Our celebrity starts exploring with the aid of a note written by his mum, who has also sent him a family photo album. Along with this came a family tree – drawn up just before Daniel was born in 1989 – put together by his “Granny Pat”.

Tracing Illegitimate Ancestors Online 4th July 2019

One of the "skeletons" that may make an appearance in many families is that of an illegitimate ancestor. Often, without knowing the father's name, a researcher may wonder how to carry on tracing a family line back any further. Discovering that someone was illegitimate, however, does not always mean that your research has hit a brick wall. Sometimes the clergyman may have made a note in the margin of the parish records that will help you, but that was not the norm.

Criminal records can reveal ancestors locked up in convict prisons 14th June 2019

The release of the HO 24 registers of prisoners in Millbank, Parkhurst and Pentonville prisons allows us to discover information on each prisoner that had been recorded. Details that can be gleaned vary but usually includes their age, marital status, whether they can read or write, their trade, when and where they were convicted, their crime, the sentence they were serving, where and whence received, previous offences, when removed and where to.

Who Do You Think You Are? Series 16 10th June 2019

Returning to our television screens after a triumphant BAFTA win, the makers promise that Series 16 will have shocking revelations, laughter, tears and emotions like never before as the celebrities explore their remarkable histories and ancestral secrets begin to unfold. The eight programmes set to air in 2019 will include the following personalities: Kate Winslet, Daniel Radcliffe, Sharon Osbourne, Naomie Harris, Paul Merton, Mark Wright, Katherine Ryan and Jack Whitehall who will all be tracing their families' histories and entertaining us along the way.

Lloyd George Domesday Survey maps reveal an Islington Theatre and Dr Crippen’s house 30th May 2019

In Edwardian times many music halls and theatres had set up in the area around Islington Green and one of these entertainment establishments was called the Collins' Music Hall. A walk down the street today finds the old frontage incorporated into a branch of a national bookshop chain with its black doors and window surrounds. Behind it is a modern block of flats and a new underground theatre, with its entrance at the bottom of Essex Road.

Merchant Seamen Apprentices to Captains of the Cutty Sark 17th May 2019

Britain has long been celebrated as a seafaring nation with many famous ships to her name. Some of them, such as the Mary Rose and the Victory were warships, but others were famous for being traders or merchantmen. Perhaps the most famous of all is the Cutty Sark, built in Dumbarton in 1869 to be one of the fastest tea-clippers of her time. A tall-masted sailing ship, she was one of the last in a line of wind powered ships whose design had developed over the years only to be superseded by the introduction of steam powered vessels.

Little Dorrit, Dickens and Dad’s Debts 26th April 2019

TheGenealogist's latest release of criminal records in association with The National Archives reveals the far too often circumstances of the poor. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, 10,000 people a year were being imprisoned for debts and many were trapped indefinitely in the prisons as they were not released until their debts were paid in full.

Using the latest features of the Map Explorer™ 12th April 2019

The new records that have now been added to TheGenealogist's Map Explorer™ allow family history researchers to really build depth to their ancestors' story by understanding more clearly the locations of houses, graveyards and war memorials.

New Map Explorer™ reveals where our ancestors' streets once stood 27th March 2019

TheGenealogist has released the new Map Explorer™ which promises to be a significant development for family history researchers looking for where their ancestors once lived and for those wishing to trace house histories. This powerful tool has been developed using georeferenced historic maps with the facility to overlay the area over several modern background maps including those from Ordnance Survey and Bing Street maps, as well as a satellite view.

Kensington and Chelsea Lloyd George Domesday Survey finds authors and actors 21st February 2019

With the release of the Kensington and Chelsea Lloyd George Domesday Survey IR 121 maps and IR 58 field books, we’ve been looking at the streets of this upmarket part of central London. It is the home of the iconic Department store Harrods but is also where many rich and famous people set up their residences.

WWII Casualty Lists find two motor racing aces executed by the Nazis 8th February 2019

When the mysterious W. Williams won the inaugural Monaco Grand Prix in 1929 while driving a dark green and privately owned Bugatti T35B, he came to the attention of motorsport enthusiasts. Racing a number of Bugattis he went on to get another seven Grand Prix wins under his belt between 1928 and 1933, establishing himself as a top Grand Prix driver.

HO 8 historic prisoner records reveal a child poisoner and a criminal lunatic detained at Her Majesty’s pleasure 23rd January 2019

Cases of assault, cutting and wounding, desertion, embezzlement, forgery, housebreaking, insubordination in the military, killing a sheep with intention to steal, larceny, murder and rape - these are just some of the crimes that our ancestors may have committed to end up in a convict prison according to the recently released records on TheGenealogist. Prisoners that have been sentenced in courts from across England, Scotland and Wales can be found in these records.

TheGenealogist adds to its Headstone collection to reveal some fascinating celebrities 10th January 2019

TheGenealogist's Headstone collection has been boosted by the addition of a large number of new photographs and transcriptions of monumental inscriptions from various churchyards and cemeteries. These headstones are photographed and transcribed by volunteers in a UKIndexer project where volunteers help their fellow genealogists by indexing and/or photographing the inscriptions found in churchyards and cemeteries.

Every year the popular BBC series Who Do You Think You Are? brings us a host of new and exciting stories. We have taken a look at each celebrity as they journey into their family history, and you can read about their discoveries in our articles.


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