Welcome to the NWKFHS Blog

Saturday, 28 November 2015

1066 to 1837 sources

A recent riddle in regard the Y-DNA results and family connections has created a need to examine in detail the ancestors in our project's family trees. The trees are not linked at present yet the Y-DNA would indicate family ties. Seeking guidance on the period before 1837 and  in particular 17th, 16th, 15th and 14th century lead me to Jonathon Oates book 'Tracing your ancestors from 1066 to 1837', published by Pen and Sword.
It starts with an introduction to the history of the period in Chapter 1. It then deals with different types of records in the following 11 chapters. Chapter 13 lists 'places to visit'. Lots of thoughts how we can start to track down records that may help our search. I'll keep you informed of any progress we make.
North West Kent FHS library has a number of reference books that will help you to transcribing old documents and there are volunteers who can guide you. We are fortunate to have such a resource. It looks like I will be spending a lot more time at the Library.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

It was a sad day on Monday 23rd November at the funeral of Joan Field one of North West Kent Family History Society Vice Presidents. Joan with her husband Tony was the face of NWKFHS at FHS events and exhibitions in the 1980 and 1990s. She chaired the publication committee and one of their publications was 'West Kent Sources. The team of researchers gathered the information on the parishes west of the Medway as a guide to family and local historians. A research tool that I still use 17 years after its 3rd addition was published. If you need to know information about Kent parishes then this is the book for you, contact NWKFHS. We have been fortunate in the people that volunteer to help the Society to provide help and guidance to its members.
West Kent Sources
This book serves as a mark of the talents of those people that give freely of their time.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Blog before the Internet

Free data on NWKFHS web site contains MIs from Ladywell and Brockley Cemetery.
James William BLOG was buried in 1897 age 54.
He was not the only BLOG for in 1903 Catherine was buried age 54.
So we have BLOGS about BLOGS before the Internet.

Saturday, 21 November 2015

How many Family History Societies (FHS) do you need to belong to?

'The answer to Life, the Universe and everything is 42'. Douglas Adams, The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy.
Kevin Bacon would probably say 6. Six degrees of separation.
At a discussion at the Lincolnshire FHS, London Branch meeting today I suggested to a couple of its London members the answer was 2.
1) You need to belong to the FHS that covers the area of your ancestors. They have local knowledge. 2) You also need to belong to the FHS that covers the area where you live. You then have the opportunity to attend meetings, learn about researching family history and you have some people to talk to who understand research problems and can act as a sound board to the queries you may have.

If you live out of area or overseas of your ancestors homeland being able to communicate with the FHS members that know that area may be essential to your research.

Now how many FHS do you think you need to belong to?
Leave a comment and please confirm what is the answer to "everything".


Friday, 20 November 2015

Where can I learn about Family and Social History

Not all the members of NWKFHS are in area and able to get to the meetings and Library.
It dawned on me this morning when the 2016 program of courses at the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum (WDOAM) arrived in the post, that there are other places to learn about your ancestors.
Perhaps you have heard of a course that might be out of area, but of interest to our members. Why not let us know so we can pass it on to the members.

Example NWKFHS does a workshop on old documents but that's at the Society Library in Joydens Wood. If you live in Sussex or the contiguous counties perhaps WDOAM at Singleton on the 15th July 2016 course 'Deciphering old documents' might be closer and of interest. See www.wealddown.co.uk

Society of Genealogists (SOG) also runs courses in their London centre and it might be easier for you to get to.

We have members in other parts of the world so if you are in Australia or America and know of an event that would be interesting to other members why not comment and let us know.

So if you hear of any courses or workshops that may interest NWKFHS or family historians in general please let us know.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

NWKFHS runs workshops at its Library

Had an interesting morning at the Society Library today attending the 'Writing Family History' workshop lead by Pauline Heathcote. It was an interesting discussion on how you could write up your family history.

Todays challenge for me was how to write family history that is interesting rather just a list of names and dates.
At the end of the workshop Pauline left us with a challenge 'What are you going to achieve as a result of this workshop?'
Guess what my response is, 'I'm going to write a family history blog'.

Can I challenge you now, 'are you now going to write a comment to this blog?'

If you want to learn about researching your family history there are a number of workshops that teach not only the basics but also give tips for the more experienced researchers. See http://www.nwkfhs.org.uk/workshops.htm. All the workshops can be rerun if there is any interest in them. Just get in touch with workshops@nwkfhs.org.uk. If you have an idea for a new topic then Victor would be very happy to hear. Use the same email address.

The Challenge is on.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Ahnentafel Charts

Received an email today from Canada and learnt a new word 'Ahnentafel'. There was a text chart numbered for each person. Its only when I Googled 'ahnentafel' did I realise it was the German name for a birth brief and by numbering each person on the chart you can use the numbers to understand the relationships of the people on the chart. See Dick Eastman's explanation which is very clear http://blog.eogn.com/2014/12/16/ahnentafel-explained/.

Wikipedia also has a definition and includes a chart from 1590
There is always something to learn when doing family history.