Courses house history

What have I learned in June?

By 31st May my pass/fail assignments for the first module of the Strathclyde Post Graduate Certificate were out of the way and I focussed on all important Assessment 1. This consisted of a selection of census, birth, marriage, death and baptism records to be entered into Family Tree Maker to create various charts and reports. I had learned a lot from the similar 2nd assignment and I’m delighted to have scored 87% (Excellent) on the Assessment. I’m finished with the Strathclyde course until October now, but will continue reading from the reading lists as and when I have time. I am looking forward to having a bit more time for researching my own family tree.

I have begun the Pharos Intermediate Certificate which consists of 10 assessed modules. The modules can be taken in any order and I have begun with Alec Tritton’s course in employment records, so far we have learned about “the professions” and the merchant navy. This week is all about Government and Crown employees.

I am co-hosting a course in Irish Ancestors & Irish Lives for the Society of Genealogists, while I don’t have any Irish ancestry I feel having an overview of the records available will be helpful when researching for other people

June has also seen the FamilyTree House History summer series of lectures from which I have learned sufficient to continue researching both my own home and one or two others that I am looking into. On 19th June I enjoyed the Online Family History Show, and made time to catch up with the lectures I had to miss over the following few days. The following weekend was the Genealogy Show, but I was suffering the after effects of my second COVID jab and need to go back and listen to the talks.

I am starting to try to put together a business plan, in part because I would like to become an AGRA associate.

Course/WebinarSpeaker(s)OrganiserMy reflections
2 June
Irish Ancestors & Irish Lives
Session 1 – Introductory sweep of history / Census Records
Jill Williams & Rosalind McCutcheonSociety of GenealogistsI learned a lot, starting with the geographic structure of Ireland, beginning with townlands, which form parishes, counties etc. It is so sad that so many census records were destroyed, both deliberately and accidently. There are however alternatives, and those census records that do survive are often more useful than the English and Welsh versions.
3 June
A Virtual View: Online Sources
Cathy Soughton & Karen AverbyFamilyTreeA rapid view of various online sources for both information and pictures to be used in house history. I have bookmarked plenty of sites to come back to.
5 June
What Makes a Marriage ? – Rules & Records
Anthony MarrSociety of Genealogists This was a fascinating talk, from a former deputy registrar. He covered everything from the recent changes to marriage registration going back through the history of registration. We learned about what makes a valid marriage, and the pitfalls of believing everything written on a marriage certificate. Anthony mentioned that until relatively recently it was legal for a girl to marry from the age of 12 and boys from 13, but he had never seen a marriage certificate which gave an age of 12, 13, 14 or 15. I was quite pleased to be able to offer an example. See below.
9 June
Irish Ancestors & Irish Lives
Session 2 – Registry of Deeds / Newspapers
Jill Williams & Rosalind McCutcheon Society of Genealogists Wow! Another whistle stop tour through Irish records. A great tip for newspapers was to check free newspaper websites such as the Welsh National library collection, websites in the USA and overseas as many articles were copied into other newspapers for the Irish diaspora. The registry of deeds is a treasure trove of information and well worth exploring.
10 June
The Interwar House: From Tenant to Home Owner
Prof Deborah Sugg RyanFamilyTreeA wonderful summary of houses in the interwar period. Deborah provided some great resources for finding out more. Also pointing out that real homes weren’t show homes and would have many items from much earlier periods.
12 June
Keeping up to Date: Family History on the Internet
Ian WallerSociety of Genealogists Ian made a point that during the talk more data would be added to the internet. He also highlighted a few specific websites of use to family historians.
14 June
Getting Started: Website building 101
WordPressThis was a useful session to learn more about how to make the most of my WordPress site. I’ll be making a few changes to my blog here once I have digested everything.
16 June
Lunchtime Chat: Researching County Records at a Distance
Else ChurchillSociety of Genealogists These sessions are as much about socialising and “meeting” like minded people as they are learning. However, it was a useful session and I have found several new places to look online before needing to travel to an archive office.
16 June
Irish Ancestors & Irish Lives
Session 3 – 17th Century / Griffiths Valuation
Jill Williams & Rosalind McCutcheon Society of Genealogists The Griffiths Valuation appears to be a very useful resource for early Irish genealogy. Definitely one to be used more often.
17 June
How to Draw a Pedigree Using PowerPoint – Basic Demonstration 
Les MitchinsonThe Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical StudiesI had no idea that PowerPoint could be used this way. I’ll definitely be practising this before I join the Advanced session in a couple of weeks.
19 June
Using Wills and Administrations in Family History
Gill BlanchardThe Family History Show, OnlineA great reminder of how useful wills can be, and where to obtain them. Gill also added that Administrations can give important clues to family history even if there is much less detail than in a will.
19 June
The Basics of French Parish and Civil Registrations and Where to Find Them Online
Anne Morddel Society of Genealogists A thoroughly interesting talk. I was left wishing that I had some French ancestry to research, maybe one day for a client.
19 June
Solving Genealogical Puzzles with DNA
Donna RutherfordThe Family History Show, Online A great overview and reminder of how to solve genealogical problems, whether a foundling, adoption, or unexpected matches. Very useful.
19 June
Hidden in the small Print
Mia BennettThe Family History Show, Online Some great advice here, including to always look at original records not just transcriptions. Lots of details are often left out of transcriptions. Also looking at the neighbours on census returns, or other baptisms, weddings and burials that happened on the same day or close by can give clues to family research. Margin notes are often not transcribed and give useful family history information. Another suggestion was to always read the enumerators front page on census returns, it can give information about the area our ancestors lived and add colour to their day to day lives. Looking at census records and directories can suggest where our ancestors shopped for example.
23 June
Irish Ancestors & Irish Lives
Session 4 – 19th Century / Irish Poor in Britain
Jill Williams & Rosalind McCutcheon Society of Genealogists The Irish really do seem to have been treated badly by the UK Government even when they were p the same country.
26 June
Understanding and Using the 1939 Register
John Hanson Society of Genealogists Another really useful talk. I didn’t know that the different coloured inks on the corrections identified when they were made.
29 June
How to Draw a Pedigree Using PowerPoint – Advanced Demonstration 
Les Mitchinson The Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies A really clear explanation of how to draw a well structured pedigree.
30 June
Irish Ancestors & Irish Lives
Session 5 – Emigration & Diaspora
Jill Williams & Rosalind McCutcheon Society of Genealogists The Irish having emigrated so much more than many other nationalities means that information can be found around the world, even about those that stayed at home.
Marriage certificate of my 3rd great grandparents. Marriages (CR) Duffield, RD Belper, Derbys[hire]. 18 April 1864. Samuel GREEN and Alice GREEN. Vol 7b p. 664.

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