At the time our ancestors lived, there were laws that came into being and which affected the way our ancestors lived and the documents they created. In last week’s post, we learned how important it is to understand the collection our record is in. It is perhaps even more important to understand the laws at … Continue reading Context is Key: Know the Law!
We’ve all seen them. Those Ancestry search results that pop up with a few details but without an image attached. They provide tantalizing bits of information but thorough researchers know that they need to find the original record, if at all possible. These 'Text-only' collections can often be used as a finding aid to the … Continue reading Locating Original Records for ‘Text Only’ Indexes on Ancestry
In the 19th and early 20th centuries the mass migration of people meant that many families were divided, with some members moving, often thousands of miles away to foreign shores, and some members left behind in the home country. The unpredictable and slow-moving postage system meant that extended family members could go months and years … Continue reading Desperately Seeking: Locating Lost Family in Newspaper Advertisements
In the Parish Chest – Churchwarden and Poor Rate Records is the fourth and final post of the In the Parish Chest series. The other posts discussed Bastardy Bonds, Settlement Certificates, Examinations and Removal Orders and Apprenticeship records. As early as 1572, Overseers of the Poor were appointed in each parish in England. Their job … Continue reading In the Parish Chest: Churchwarden & Poor Rate Records
This is the third post in my In the Parish Chest series. You can learn about bastardy bonds here and Settlement Examinations & Removal Orders here. Was your English ancestor an apprentice? Apprenticeships date back to as early as the 16th century when young boys were formally bound to a master, usually a craftsman, who … Continue reading In the Parish Chest: Apprenticeship Records
As we learned in my last post on bastardy bonds, parishes in England did not want to be financially liable for the support of individuals or families settling within their boundaries who could not provide for themselves. In England, the Poor Relief Act of 1662, also known as the Settlement and Removal Act came into … Continue reading In the Parish Chest: Settlement Examinations, Settlement Certificates, Removal Orders
Bastardy Bonds can be a great resource when trying to locate a birth date and place when vital records may not exist or in placing someone in a specific area at a specific time. In England, these records were created on a parish level before 1834 and on county and poor law union levels beginning … Continue reading In the Parish Chest: Bastardy Bonds
Tax records are a valuable but often overlooked source: They can help to fill in the decade between census enumerations and before the first federal census of 1790. In burned counties tax records are often the only information you may find on your ancestor. Tax records sometimes contain specific residence information, giving an exact physical … Continue reading Tax Records: An often overlooked source
In the Census: Understanding what the census enumerator was instructed to write. The census is one of the first places we go to when researching our ancestors. We pour over those images, trying to interpret what is on the page in front of us. For the 1880 U.S. census, the Superintendent of the Census offered … Continue reading Understanding what the Census Enumerator was meant to write (and how that helps you understand your ancestor).
Recently, I’ve noticed quite a few posts in various genealogy groups where people are asking for help. That’s not new, of course. What seems to be new, or perhaps I’ve just noticed it more, is that the request for help is preceded by a sentence like this, “I’ve hit a brick wall! I’ve been looking … Continue reading Is it really a brick wall?