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Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Family history

Over the last few days I've started getting interested again in researching my family history. I haven't touched it for about 6 years and had got stuck with trying to trace my great grandmother. I'm totally astounded by how much there is on the Internet now. I've got a trial membership of
just to see how much was on there. As a result I've managed to track down my great grandmother's birth and have sent off for a copy of her birth certificate - from the GRO rather than via the site itself. Cost from GRO - £7.00 - cost from the same place via £19.99!! Astronomical mark up.

I've also found my great great grandfather and his family on the 1861, 1871, 1881,1891 and 1901 censuses. I'd tracked him down on the 1881 census when I first started researching but had never managed to find him on the 1891 census or the 1901 census. As a result I now know that my grandfather and great grand mother were living at home again 2 months after his birth in the workhouse in January 1891. My great grandmother was one of 11 children - though the last few were half brothers and sisters as her own mother died in 1881 just before the census of that year.

It seems as though people moved around the country far more than we think they did as well. My great great grandfather was born in Lincolnshire, then worked at Thorney in Cambridgeshire then moved back to Lincolnshire and in the 1901 census is living with one of his daughters and her small illegitimate child in Beverley in Yorkshire


Anne Brooke said...

Fascinating stuff! Honestly, the older I get, the more I'm gripped by this kind of thing.


Jilly said...

I think it's an age thing, Anne. So many people do it when they retire. Maybe it's to do with wanting to know where you came from.

NAM said...

Oh, well done - it's those elusive ancestors again! You're right, there's a fantastic amount online, and it's a really absorbing interest.

Perhaps I'm unusual in always having been interested (well, since I was about eight), but I put it down to the size of my extended family. Having a family tree was the only way I could work out who belonged where!

I was interested in the comment about your grandfather and his mother being back at home 2 months after the birth - in some instances, in rural areas especially, the workhouse must have been the only hospital equivalent for miles - and you certainly wouldn't be encouraged to stay.

Jilly said...

NAM - she had been a domestic servant prior to the birth so I wondered whether she'd been forgiven by her father for being a fallen woman! But you're right about the workhouses being the only available hospital - especially in country areas.