Tag Archives: BMD indexes

Time never stands stills in genealogy

26 Jan

Whilst going through my files and getting everything up to date I turned my attention to the SUMMERFIELD family. The family connection is through another TROWER, this time it was Martha, who was sister of Mercy and Mary, who I have mentioned many times already.

It didn’t seem that long ago that I last did some research on James and Martha (although I see it was back in May 2008 that I visited Felbridge, Surrey in search of gravestones), but so much more information is available online now in such a short time, that my research has been left behind.

Starting with their marriage, although James was from Rusper, Sussex and Martha was from Henfield, Sussex the marriage took place in London (it looks like Martha must have been working up in London). Previously I only had the GRO BMD index reference for the marriage, but now of course the London Parish Registers are available on Ancestry.co.uk, including the entry for James and Martha.

The 1911 census has added even more information to their stories. In 1911 they were living in Newdigate, Surrey with their two children Sidney Ambrose (born 1894) and Raymond James (born 1907). The census also revealed that there had been another child who had died by the time of the census, so I have added the task of find him/her to my to-do list.

The eldest son Sidney Ambrose was killed during the First World War, although apparently not whilst on active service. Fortunately his service record survived and is now available on Ancestry.co.uk, although as you can see below it didn’t escape unscathed.

Burnt Documents

It is not going to be easy to pick out the details from these scraps of paper, but it is going onto my to-do list. Hopefully I can find out the details surrounding Sidney’s death.

There are still the updated GRO BMD indexes to search on Ancestry.co.uk, hopefully they will enable me to find descendants of the surviving son Raymond James (possibly even living descendants), another item for the to-do list.

I was surprised that so much more needs to be added to my family tree in such a short time, and it worries me what else needs updating. It also makes me think I need to establish some sort of regular review, either once each new database goes online or after a fixed period of time.

GRO marriage index now fully transcribed on ancestry.co.uk

3 Jul

I went on the ancestry.co.uk site last night to check the GRO index reference for the death certificate of Henry Herbert HEMSLEY (see my post about our mini-heatwave) and discovered that they have now transcribed all the GRO marriage index as well.

I wasn’t supposed to be doing any new research at the moment, just tidying up some of the stuff I have already done, but this is going to help answer some of my queries with tracing some of my more recent relations such as second and third cousins. I am just glad that the weekend is approaching fast.

Like they have previously done with the birth index, the marriage index is now in two separate sections, 1837-1915 (transcribed by FreeBMD) and 1916-2005 (transcribed by Ancestry), although previously 1984 to 2005 was already searchable by name.

In my opinion the GRO BMD indexes on ancestry.co.uk are proving to be one of the most valuable databases on the whole site. They provide a quick and easy (although not cheap at £7.00 a certificate) way to access information for a period (1915 to 2005) where there is virtually no other information readily available to the general public.

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