SEA­FAR­ING FORE­BEARS

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine - - READER STORY - by Sara Khan, lead genealogist on

David Suchet had al­ways been fond of boats so wanted to know if he had any sea­far­ing an­ces­tors. He dis­cov­ered that his ma­ter­nal great great grand­fa­ther, Ge­orge Jez­zard, was a mariner in the lat­ter part of the 19th cen­tury. David traced his 40-year ca­reer, which in­cluded the wreck­ing of a ship that Ge­orge was mas­ter of.

We traced Ge­orge’s ca­reer us­ing ex­tant sources at the Na­tional Mar­itime Museum in Green­wich ( rmg.co.uk). These in­cluded Ge­orge’s mas­ter mariner’s cer­tifi­cate and also en­tries in Lloyd’s

List. The lat­ter con­tained de­tails of the ship­wreck that Ge­orge was in­volved in in 1860. David next con­sulted lo­cal news­pa­pers to un­cover the de­tails of the ship­wreck dur­ing a storm.

Fur­ther de­tails about mer­chant mariner records at the NMM can be found here: rmg.co.uk/dis­cover/ re­searchers/re­search- guides/ re­search-guide- c2- mer­chant­navy-trac­ing-peo­ple- mas­ter

mariners. De­pend­ing on when your an­ces­tor was a mas­ter mariner, there may also be records at The Na­tional Ar­chives: na­tion­alarchives.gov.uk/ help-with-your- re­search/ re­search- guides/of­fi­cersmer­chant- navy. Since David’s episode aired, many new mas­ter mariner records have been up­loaded to An­ces­try and Find­my­past. Many news­pa­pers are now avail­able to view on­line for a fee at bri­tish news­pa­per ar­chive.co.uk as well.

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