Who Do You Think You Are?
These gems can help you unlock the lives of your ancestors in the areas that they cover
FamilySearch intends to add more than 400 million viewable digital images and searchable records to its site in 2021. New languages will be included too (20 were added in 2020), and staff are working to improve the search experience for an international audience. Technicians are currently digitising – Chinese family history books – to connect more people of Chinese descent to their records. There will be some fresh digital ‘Experiences’ aimed at newbies in 2021, as well as improvements to the Family Tree ancestor pages. Also planned are more enhancements to the mobile website, additional sharing options for the Memories portal, more ways to share data via social platforms, and some new interactive ways to understand DNA. celebratingjewisharchives.org
This new website is a celebration of Jewish archives, showcasing UK-wide collections that include rare images, photographs, documents and artefacts. bit.ly/MoreThanOliverTwist
Explore fully referenced pauper biographies focusing on inmates who appear in the 1881 census in workhouses as far afield as Guildford, Llanfyllin, Ripon and Gressenhall. The project was funded through Arts Council England. localrecall.co.uk
Here you can explore 150 years of Norfolk history embedded in the pages of the It includes voice-activated searching, and you can listen to headlines and stories read aloud. layersoflondon.org The site has recently added a layer for Charles Booth’s 19th-century poverty maps. maps.nls.uk
Covid-19 disrupted the
National Library of Scotland’s scanning programme, which means that large collections of maps of England and Wales are now due to be joining their Scottish counterparts online in early 2021. These include Ordnance Survey plans of all towns in England and Wales (1860s–1900s), as well as one-inch-to-the-mile maps of England and Wales (1840s– 1940s) and Admiralty charts for English and Welsh coastlines. wytithemaps.org.uk/about
Yorkshire’s new and improved
Online website relaunched with Bradford tithes, which have now been joined by those from Leeds. Meanwhile digitised diaries kept by Amabel Hume-Campbell, 1st Countess de Grey, will be transcribed during 2021.
The National Archives (TNA) will be road-testing new ways to explore collections in 2021, seeking feedback on these ideas when the time comes. Staff are currently working on a set of revamped guides and entry points for research into specific wars, designed for users less familiar with TNA. These overviews include the First World War and Second World War pages published recently. Upcoming guides will cover the Crimean War, Boer War and Napoleonic Wars. addressinghealth.org.uk
‘Morbidity, Mortality and Occupational Health in the
Victorian and Edwardian
Post Office’ is a three-year project drawing on Post Office pension records. The team estimates that at its conclusion the database will include records of about 30,000 individuals between 1859 and 1908. boatfamilies.website
This ongoing genealogy of workers on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal is now entering its second decade. dhi.ac.uk/miners-health/mcomicsearch A new database of coal-mining accident railwayaccidents.port.ac.uk/next-steps This website contains extracted data from Railway Inspectorate reports and the Great Eastern Railway Company’s Benevolent Fund 1913–1923. It’s set to be further extended with records from trade unions and railway companies, and state inspector reports.
The site has added records for London, Surrey, the SouthWest, the Midlands, East Midlands, the North-West, Yorkshire, Wales and Central Scotland, and taken over a digital-cemetery system that will open up recent records. freebmd.org.uk
The longawaited FreeBMD2 will be launched at some point during the course of 2021. This will dress the database in the same fashionable ‘clothes’ as its sister sites freecen.org.uk and freereg.org.uk, making it easier to use as well as more mobileand tablet-friendly. www.irish genealogy.ie/en
The website has been adding images of civil registration records to join the indexes and transcriptions already available. You can keep an eye on progress via the news pages – the most recent addition is 671,599 civil death records.