Look­ing for con­nec­tions

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine - - GENEALOGY MASTERCLASS -

Start col­lect­ing ev­ery­one with the sur­name of the fam­ily you’re re­search­ing in the area as there may be con­nec­tions fur­ther back that an ex­haus­tive set of searches will un­cover. Don’t be too con­cerned about variant spellings of the sur­name ei­ther; col­lect them all.

You may find your­self build­ing trees for peo­ple who are not re­lated to you, or for whom you haven’t yet found a fam­ily link to your tree, but that is all part of the fun.

The ma­jor sets of records you need to find are: bap­tisms, mar­riages and buri­als, and the bish­ops’ tran­scripts, plus the non­con­formist equiv­a­lent; pro­bate records (wills and ad­min­is­tra­tions and in­ven­to­ries); Poor Law doc­u­ments such as set­tle­ment ex­am­i­na­tions and re­moval or­ders, church­war­dens’ ac­counts and over­seers’ ac­counts; Quar­ter Ses­sions; mar­riage bonds and al­le­ga­tions; mano­rial records; and es­tate records for the large landown­ers in the area.

Also use­ful are th­ese other var­i­ous types of record: tithe records, trade di­rec­to­ries, poll books, freemen lists, burgess rolls, hearth tax, Protes­ta­tion oath, other tax records, busi­ness records, and records of the Court of Chancery and Equity Courts.

Fi­nally, in some cases it may ap­pear that records are miss­ing, but in fact it is just that a fam­ily are miss­ing from the records. Of­ten this is for one very good rea­son: the fam­ily you’re look­ing for are in a to­tally dif­fer­ent place. Such ‘neg­a­tive searches’ can tell you use­ful things, so pay heed and record them.

Neg­a­tive searches can tell you use­ful things, so pay heed to them

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