Tag Archives: westminster

Another piece of the GEERING jigsaw

17 Mar

It wasn’t long after writing about my satisfaction from researching¬† the GEERINGs of Hailsham, Sussex that I made another important discovery. Actually it wasn’t really a discovery as such, but the realisation of a link between and importance of two pieces of possible evidence I had previously discovered.

The first piece of evidence is a marriage on the IGI for James GEARING and Ann HOWLETT at Saint Martin in the Fields, Westminster on the 30th September 1797.

So far this has proved to be the best match for the marriage of my 5x great-grandparents, but I was reluctant to accept it without any further evidence just because it seemed a good fit. When I looked at it, it wasn’t even that good a fit.

The second piece of evidence came to light when I started looking into the life of John James GEERING, one of the other children of James and Ann.

It looks like John James GEERING married Eliza JONES in Lewes, Sussex on the 11th June 1821. Their first child was baptised on the 14th October 1822 in Lewes, Sussex. His name was Francis Howlett GEERING.

It looks like John James GEERING’s first child was given a middle name that was the same as his grandmother’s surname. It could just be coincidence of course, but it gives me enough confidence to start looking for the parents and siblings of Ann HOWLETT in London, in search of further clues.

So another piece of the jigsaw seems to slot into place, maybe not a corner piece but certainly one of the edge pieces. Unfortunately there is still a lot of blue sky to fill in before the picture is complete.

Weekly genealogy preview (for week 36)

30 Aug

Hmmm, looking back at last week’s goals it seems that I didn’t really manage to achieve most of them, but tomorrow is a bank holiday so I have an extra day off this week to try again.

  • This week I want to get my paperwork down to just three folders, one of original documents, one of general research material (although I am having second thoughts about keeping that one as well) and one where I need to scan or transcribe the information (some of that is gong to take some time). I still have another folder with filing materials (dividers and punched pockets) that I have salvaged from the other folders, and can’t bare to part with just yet, but that doesn’t count.
  • I still want to tidy up this blog. I haven’t got around to doing much work on it recently, other than posting. I have quite a few ideas for things I want to do, but it is just a question of finding time to do it.
  • I still haven’t been for a walk around Nuthurst, Sussex. I want to visit the church and New House Farm, but again it is just a question of finding the time to do it.
  • I really need to sort out the bookmarks on my PC. There are two reasons for this, firstly they are getting a bit out of hand and unmanageable (the need sorting into sub-folders or sub-sub-folders). The second reason is that I want to copy them over to my netbook, but I would rather they were better organised before I did it.
  • Next Saturday I am hoping to visit the Picture Postcard Show in London. I need to produce a list of places and subjects that I want postcards of, aside from my main collecting interests. Also I need to get a research plan in place should I have time after the show to pop into the City of Westminster Archives just up the road.

Criminal registers at ancestry.co.uk

3 Aug

Why do Ancestry always do this to me? I thought I had this week nicely planned out, I knew what I wanted to achieve this week and then Ancestry go and put up a new database, which I cannot resist exploring.

The database in question is the Criminal Registers (1791-1892) from the National Archives (Series HO 26 and HO 27). These have been in the works for a while as part of the Ancestry World Archives Project. I learnt about their release at lunchtime from the BBC News website, and couldn’t resist having a look on ancestry.co.uk and checking some of my surnames.

The disadvantage of this database is that it provides very little detail on what actually took place, but there is just enough here to provide a gateway to further research. I can see that newspapers are probably going to be quite useful here, and this database is going to open up a lot of interesting material that would probably never have come to light otherwise (unless an ancestor was found in prision during a census or was transported). Another good starting point mentioned by Ancestry is the National Archives research guide Tracing 19th and 20th Century Criminals.

A case in point is one of my elusive relations Wybrants KINGHORN (son of my 3x great grandfather Thomas KINGHORN). There are two entries in the database for him, the first trial on the 31st May 1852 resulted in imprisonment for 8 months for simple larceny. The second trial on the 9th December 1853 was for larceny in dwelling house after previous conviction, but this time he was aquitted. Both trials took place in Westminster, Middlesex which fits with what little I do know about him already.

Maybe the reason I can’t find him in the 1851 and 1861 census is that he was detained elsewhere or even using an alias. Whatever the reason I now need to follow this up and search for more details and clues to his whereabouts. I can see it is not going to be a quick process, but now Ancestry and it’s transcribers have provided me with a signpost it is up to me to try and find out more. Time to go and re-write my plans!

LONDON: Genealogy sightseeing from a London bus

14 Jun

I had noticed several buses passing the top of the road at the Mount Pleasant Sorting Office, and thought that it would be a good idea to find one heading south, which would take me closer to Victoria railway station and home.

I walked a short way down the street and found the bus stop, and as luck would have it there was a bus direct to Victoria, the number 38. I had just missed one (I had seen it going past as I walked to the bus stop) and back home in rural West Sussex that would normally mean waiting another hour (or sometimes two) for the next one. Fortunately here in London the timetable said it would only be 4 to 6 minutes.

It has been a while since I travelled on a London bus, not that it is much different from any other bus, except that this one announced the upcoming stops to passengers. Anyway I sat down an relaxed, and before long we were stuck in traffic, but at least I was seeing more of the streets of London than I would on the Underground.

I sitting back enjoying the world outside the bus when I realised we were heading through the streets of Westminster, the area where Thomas KINGHORN (my 3x great grandfather) had lived. I strained to see the street names, trying to spot one I recognised.

We must have been travelling down Shaftesbury Avenue, because we turned left into Great Windmill Street (or one end of it) and I realised we were in the street where Thomas KINGHORN had lived! Not that much remained from the time when he was living here, but it was nice to be there anyway.

A bit further along I guessed we would pass the St James’s Church, Piccadilly and sure enough we did. I caught a brief glimpse of the church and the colourful market outside, the church where four of Thomas KINGHORN’s children had been baptised, including my 2x great grandmother Dorothy Isabella.

I could go home happy now, in fact I was over the moon, my escape by bus from Underground mayhem had turned into a genealogical sightseeing trip!

How hard can it be to find Wybrants KINGHORN?

10 Apr

Wybrants KINGHORN was the eldest son of Thomas KINGHORN (3x great grandfather) and his first wife Alicia DALTON. It is an unusual enough name (I haven’t been able to find what it means or where it comes from yet), so I assumed it would stand out like a sore thumb. However after several hours searching last night (not quite into the small hours, but very near) I still cannot find him in the 1851 and 1861 census.

From the 1841 census I know he was born around 1832, in the county of Middlesex (most likely in Westminster or Marylebone). The birth year agrees with the age on the GRO BMD death index entry.

He married in Q2 1852 in the St Giles Registration District, London. Not sure who his wife was, because I haven’t ordered the marriage certificate yet, but I think I am going to have to if I really want to find him.

He died in Q4 1866 in the Marylebone Registration District, London, aged 34 years old. Again, I haven’t ordered a death certificate or checked probate records, so those are possible avenues of research to follow.

Try as hard as I might, I still can’t find him in the 1851 or 1861 census on Ancestry.co.uk (I had a quick look on findmypast.com with no luck).

In the grand scheme of things I shouldn’t be spending too much time or money on Wybrants KINGHORN, he is only my half 3x great uncle after all, but I don’t like to be beaten and I feel I need to find out so I can tell the complete story of his father Thomas KINGHORN.

If anyone finds him please let me know, meanwhile I will try some different websites and even more different spellings to see if I can flush him out, before I order a marriage certificate.


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