Last night I needed to do a quick bit of family history research that would stop me feeling sorry for myself and give me the satisfaction that I had achieved something with my family history this weekend.
I chose the COTTINGTONs of Framfield, Sussex because I knew it would be quite easy to fill in some details and make some quick progress, although I hadn’t really looked at them in any depth before, but with a surname like COTTINGTON how difficult could it be?
Caroline COTTINGTON was my 3x great grandmother and married Thomas DRIVER in Framfield on the 25th December 1855. From the marriage entry I knew her father was James COTTINGTON and she was born around 1834. So my first step was to find her in the census as the daughter of James COTTINGTON rather than as the wife of Thomas DRIVER.
This proved to be even easier than I had expected, but with the help of the Sussex Marriage Index (thanks to the Sussex Family History Group) I discovered that James had been married twice, and was widowed twice by the 1851 census.
I then had the task of picking through the children in the census and with the help of the Sussex Baptism Index (thanks again to the SFHG), allocating each one to the correct set of parents.
That was just the sort of quick challenge I needed to get my brain focused again. I could now go to bed knowing that I had added another family (or two depending on how you look at it) to my tree and taken that branch back further still.