Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Sussex Genealogy – Parish record transcriptions

As most of you will know Graham and I are based in southern Scotland and this is the area which we concentrate most of our research. We do however branch out from time to time as families have a habit of moving around. Most recently I was looking for parish records from Sussex. I came across the website of James Brockhurst Publications and thought what he offered was so good I would tell you about it.

Like many of us James began out of a personal interest in genealogy and from that grew an idea of making Sussex family history research less time-consuming by providing easy to read transcriptions.

One interesting feature which I have rarely seen in England is, where possible, baptisms and burials have been cross-referenced and the maiden names of the child’s mother has been included to assist you further.  Such details are included as “helpful hints”.   References to the images of the original register pages means you can even see for yourself.

Most of James’ publications are just a pound. You pay via PayPal and he will send you out the PDF file via email.

So if you’re researching in Sussex now have a look but if you’re not bookmark www.sussexgenealogy.org.uk for future reference!

Monday, 27 August 2012

A passion for the scenery of Scotland

For years the population of Scotland was decreasing. When people left they often took with them a few mementoes of home. One thing they took however was not tangible: the memory of the atmosphere and scenery of home.

In more recent times an artist from the Scottish Borders, Kenneth M Allan, left the peace and tranquillity of Scotland for a few years. While he was away he began creating beautiful paintings which I think truly capture the atmosphere of Scotland. It’s raining here tonight as I write this, I have a fire burning behind me and I’m snug and warm, just like the people in the homes of this painting: The Boats are in, the Fires are on.

My favourite is his un-named watercolour which reminds me so much of our wonderful holidays up in the north of Scotland.

So whether you’re curled up in front of a fire, still trying to dry off from the days adventures, dreading the impending winter or you’re sitting in Australia waiting for spring and wondering where your ancestors were from take a browse through Kenneth’s paintings and imagine home: 


Friday, 24 August 2012

The 1831 census of Jedburgh is now transcribed

As we all know the 1841 census is the first Scottish census which has survived throughout almost all of Scotland, however there are some pre 1841 censuses that do survive and some are very detailed. We have just published the 1831 census of Jedburgh in Roxburghshire. You can buy it directly from Maxwell Ancestry for just £8.99. Follow this link for a free list of  the surnames contained in the book: http://www.maxwellancestry.com/ancestry/publishing/names/31792.htm

Only basic statistical information was required to be submitted for each parish in the censuses prior to 1841. Very few listings containing the names of individuals, therefore, have survived.  In the case of Jedburgh parish, what has survived is simply a listing of heads of households, followed by statistics about their household. As the manner in which the data was collected in these early census years was left up to each individual schoolmaster to decide for himself, there is no standard way the information is laid out. We have followed closely the format the original material is laid out in.

The population of Jedburgh parish in 1831 was 5.647, with 1,227 households listed. The record is split into two sections, one for the burgh (population 3,617) and one for the landward part of the parish (population 2,030). The burgh section includes the houses within both the ancient Royal Burgh and the Parliamentary Burgh boundaries. The Burgh section includes frequent additional information in the ‘Remarks to enable to answer additional Queries’ column, but unfortunately this has not been filled in for the landward section of the parish. In the ‘Remarks’ column, frequent reference is made to ‘above’ and ‘below’. This refers to other individuals in the household other than the household head, above or below the age of 20 years, engaged in occupations to be recorded for the census statistics. If another occupation is listed in the remarks column, and the ‘Males above 20’ column is higher than one, the additional occupation(s) are likely to be for the other adult males in the household.