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Anthony Adolph, professional genealogistWelcome to the Genes Reunited web chat, where you can get help and advice from our resident genealogist and expert family historian, Anthony Adolph. To find out more about Anthony click here.

Thanks again to Anthony and everyone who joined in on the sessions so far.

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Name Date
Caroline McLaughlin 16/10/2012 21:38:01

Hi Anthony, I'm trying to trace my grandmothers first husband, Joseph Jamieson. born in Antrim Northern Ireland on 24 Oct 1903, they married in Glasgow in 1927 and, after having three children, were planning on moving to New Zealand. He left without her in the early 1930's with the intention of sending for her and their children but she never heard from him again. She went on to marry my grandfather 12 years later, I'd just like to know what could have happened to him. Caroline.

If he really went to New Zealand, and did not then go on to somewhere else, then you may find a death and/or marriage for him in the records there, and that's the only thing I can really suggest.

Margaret Taylor 16/10/2012 21:36:39

I am absolutely lost. My great grandfather has totally disappeared. He was William Bedson born 1857 in Betley, Staffordshire. In 1881 after the census he married Mary Keen in Newcastle under Lyme. After the birth of a son Leonard in1884 my grandmother was born in 1885. On the birth certificate her mother is shown as Mary Bedson but her father is not named. Mary Bedson (Keen) married again in 1888 and her status at that time is shown as widowed. I have searched and searched for a death but to no avail. I have tried to find a divorce, an accident which meant his death could not be certified or event an emigration record for him. Where could I go next - any hint would be much appreciated. Thanks.

It sounds very much as if William had simply left his wife, but I think you are going wrong here by describing him as your great grandfather. If his own wife did not put him down as the father of her daughter in 1885 then you can be very sure indeed that he was not the father. The real father is far likelier to have been the man she later married. You could try one of's Family Finder tests, seeking a genetic match between yourself and a descendant of one of the second husband's siblings' descendants, to test that theory out.

Gary Phillips 16/10/2012 21:34:00

where can i look at German family tree records and military service

as above/below

Gary Phillips 16/10/2012 21:33:57

where can i look at German family tree records and military service

In Germany. Almost all German genealogical records are held locally, near to where they were created. As to military records, it depends entirely on which period interests you.

Brenda Bobbett 16/10/2012 21:31:43

Hi Anthony. thanks for that, but unfortunately no George had a son George around 1845 his marraige and all census result form 1871-1911 say Bristol Gloucester and most say 1845 born. he died in london in 1926, lots of Bobbetts all spellings,but none fit in with my George. his marraige certificate says father George (deceased) but i cannot find one. Brenda Brenda

Oh, I see - bad luck! I'd advise putting together detailed pedigrees of any Bobbett families you can find in Bristol, hoping that in the course of doing so you will see or discover where George fitted in. Another possibility is that he was illegitimate, so you'd be looking for a female Bobbett likely to have given birth to him, ie, a Bobbett whose father was not a George at all.

Dawn Cotgrove 16/10/2012 21:31:24

please can you tell me why someone is not on the 1911 census and yet they are on the 1901. I have checked the deaths, and not listed. Could they have been in a workhouse or prison and if so how do i find out? Many thanks Dawn.

People in prison and the workhouses are very likely indeed to be in the 1911 - they could not escape the enumerators there! But your missing person may have been out of England and Wales, in the army, in Scotland, in India... or, it is possible that they are in 1911, but were misindexed. Or try a few variants of the first and surname, because if you don't type in EXACTLY the way their name was transcribed, they won't appear.

Colin Cross 16/10/2012 21:27:25

I have been looking at the public boards on ancestry. From following the surname from one tree to another. Where someone had the surname and finished with that person I then picked it up from another.From now to Thomas Cross 1658 Jenet Becastsaff 1660 through to John Crosse 1547 then Adam de Cruce or Del Crosse 1277 . Then someone has that there is a connection to Sir William De lancaster Kendal 1136 Countess kendal Sir william Lancaster 1100 Lady Gundred Plantagenet then they have as the latest going back Geoffrey 1 Gastinois 969 Beatrice Countess of Gastinois . I can see that Cross could go back to Crosse or Del Crosse but William De lancaster I can't see where they have proved it. What are your thoughts. kind regards Colin Cross

To answer your direct question, I expect the connection which is confusing you was via a marriage, presumably a Cross marrying the daughter of a de Lancaster - but please don't rely on the public boards on Ancestry - that is an extremely unreliable way of approaching this old and noble subject, but it may have given you a thread you can try to follow up using proper sources. For upper class families like this you can place a fair degree reliance on properly researched pedigree books, from the heralds' visitations to the Burke's publications (though they are not without their problems). The Society of Genealogists has a fantastic collection, and many good university and city libraries are fairly well stocked with such books as well. In the next few months a new book by me called Tracing Your Aristocratic Ancestors will appear (published by Pen and Sword) which will go into all this in great detail.

Christina Lincoln 16/10/2012 21:14:01

Another question Anthony - my g g grandmother Mary Anne Moran was a "lodging housekeeper" at at least two properties in Eastbourne. From the1891 and 1911 censuses it shows her living with her husband and children at these properties. I would be very interested to find out whether they owned the properties they lived in at the time or whether someone else owned them and they just worked there. Where can I go to find out who owned a particular property in the late 1800s/early 1900s? Thanks again. Christina

It is not very easy. Virtually everyone in those days rented. One way of finding out would be to approach the current owners of the places identified in the censuses, and see if they have deeds going back that far, as these would show who was in possession of the properties. I wrote a book called Tracing Your Home's History which explains the ins and outs of house history.

Patricia Edgson 16/10/2012 21:10:00

I came accross a midwife who delivered a baby in 1929, who registered the birth herself 6 weeks later. Was this legal?

Completely. As long as a birth is registered within six weeks of the event it does not matter who did so - the parents, the midwife, the neighourhood cat or Father Christmas!

Vena Stanyard 16/10/2012 21:08:51

hi im currently trying to trace the children of my fatehers brothers and sisters, i need to look in the 30s onwards how do i do this please? also my father was one of 15 and 11 survived how do i find the deceased ones names hope you can help me thankyou

You can do this using the birth, marriage and death indexes on this site, buying certificates where necessary at First, identify all their births, picking out the correct ones using the mother's maiden name, which is given in the indexes. Then, seek likely marriages, checking you have the right ones buy buying certificates. Then, seek births to those couples, and so on. Recent deaths are worth checking, as often the informant was a son or daughter, and if so they will give an address, which may be current. Otherwise, look up those likely to be still alive in the telephone books.

S Lane 16/10/2012 21:07:41

Hello, I am trying to trace my paternal grandfather who was in the U.S. Medical corps. The only information I have is a name, approximate year of birth and that he was in the Swansea area c. December 1943. I have already tried the U.S. National Archives Enlistment Records, a NRPS War Babes search request and contact with T.R.A.C.E., which were all un successful. What would be the best course of action next? Thanks.

You've tried the main things I would have suggested. Your man's not appearing in the places you have tried already is worrying, maybe suggesting use of a false name or at least some problem with the information you have. But, hoping that the name you have is right, you could also try the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the U.S. Social Security Death Index, and indeed the US censuses, which are searchable now up to 1940.

Brenda Bobbett 16/10/2012 21:06:05

George Bobbett first shows up at his marraige in 1864 to amelia matilda worgan there other george's born around 1845 but i can follow there trees alongside my george but cannot find his birth or on the 1851 0r 1861 census. his father was George according to his marriage certificate. can you help please. Brenda

One trick to try in cases like this would be to seem the father in the censuses, or even his father's death. You could also seem your George after his 1864 marriage - in the 1871 and later censuses. That would give you his place of birth, and you could look for Bobbetts in the earlier censuses for that place who should, logically, include your correct George.

David Stretton 16/10/2012 21:04:33

Can you help solve this family mystery: The daughter of David PRICE KIRBY, Mary Alice Price Kirby PRATT recalled that "... her father's family were wealthy and owned a slate quarry in Shropshire, and also property on the Welsh borders. Her father (David PRICE) married below his station, to the displeasure of his parents. Who disowned him and disinherited him. He soon fell into debt and poverty. One day bailiffs came to evict her father and his murder scene her father joined the British Army and fought with them through the Crimea War. Whilst serving in the Crimea he changed his identification with a dead soldier". bride (Louisa BOLDEN), a fight quickly ensued and her father killed one of the bailiffsFleeing the murder scene her father joined the British Army and fought with them through the Crimea War. Whilst serving in the Crimea he changed his identification with a dead soldier".

It's still not quite there, but it remains intriguing. Is the real problem that you think Price was not the original family name? Or do you mean Kirby (you give both names as his surname, above). It's pretty unlikely that a soldier could get away with such a subterfuge whilst serving in the Crimea - but I suppose he could have tried such a trick once he got back and was de-mobbed. If so, and you think David Price (or David Kirby) was an assumed name, then by looking in the army deaths you should find such a man dying in the Crimea. Finding his original identity would be harder, but if you have a male-line descendant of his you could have a Y chromosome DNA test and see if that person matched any other men who had been tested: their surname would probably be the same as "David's" original one.

Christina Lincoln 16/10/2012 21:04:30

Hi Anthony, I wonder if you can help me. I am trying to find a death record for my great great grandmother Mary Anne Moran. She was born in Berkshire in 1851 and lived most of her life in Eastbourne, East Sussex. I have found her on the 1911 census living in Eastbourne aged 60 but am unable to find a death registered for her in Eastbourne after that time and no record of her having been buried or cremated in Eastbourne. Do you have any suggestions where I can go from here? Many thanks Christina

There are two possible solutions - widen your search considerably, as she may have died anywhere in Britain, or even abroad, on holiday, say. The other, which sometimes catches people out, is a remarriage late in life. If Mary Ann married after 1911, you'll never find her listed as Moran, but you may find her in the marriage indexes, and then she'll appear in the deaths under her new married name. And if not - this caught me out once, and never again - she might always have widowed again, and married yet again!

David Stretton 16/10/2012 21:03:05

Can you help solve this family mystery: The daughter of David PRICE KIRBY, Mary Alice Price Kirby PRATT recalled that "... her father's family were wealthy and owned a slate quarry in Shropshire, and also property on the Welsh borders. Her father (David PRICE) married below his station, to the displeasure of his parents. Who disowned him and disinherited him. He soon fell into debt and poverty. One day bailiffs came to evict her father and his murder scene her father joined the British Army and fought with them through the Crimea War. Whilst serving in the Crimea he changed his identification with a dead soldier". bride (Louisa BOLDEN), a fight quickly ensued and her father killed one of the bailiffs. Fleeing the

I'd love to help, but I'm afraid your message became a bit garbled, as you can see, above. Can you re-send it in its entirety? It sounds like a wonderful story. However, let's for now address the first part. It could all be true , but family wealth, followed by 'marrying beneath him/her' and then a descent comes up often, and ,once you've traced back to find out who his parents were you may find that they weren't quite as illustrious as they were made out to be, and that David didn't fall so far. This is especially true of a story told by a daughter: the last thing she wanted to do was admit (if such was the case) that her beloved father was a miserable ne'er-do-well: she needed to make excuses for him, and thus the story began. Now, what about the rest of your question?

Peter Keegan 04/09/2012 21:37:21

Hi. I would like find out some information on my G Grandmother Madeline Dorothy Hutton; here is what I know: 1884 Birth registered in Southampton. ?DoB between 19th April - 09th October. 06/04/1901 census aged 16 servant in West Derby, Liverpool. 09/10/1909 Married (Aged 25) at All Saints CoE Church, Princess Park, Toxteth Park, Liverpool to Alfred Holmes. 03/04/1911 census aged 26 wife in West Derby, Liverpool. 19/04/1941 Death aged 56 in Liverpool from a Heart Attack. Father: Samuel Hutton (Master Mariner) Mother: Unknown. Any information you are able help me with regarding details of birth of Madeline D Hutton and her parents would be greatly appreciated. Pete Keegan

You've done everything right so far: the next steps are to buy her 1884 birth certificate and seek her and her father in the censuses working back from 1901.

Audrey Drinkwater 04/09/2012 21:07:31

I'm trying to find the death record of my grandmother. She was born Frances Sanderson in Carlisle (15.6.1895), married James Moffat (4.11.1922). She never divorced. She did however leave her husband and began calling herself Frances Holt and was last known to be living in Lambeth, London in the early 1960s. Despite searching the death records under the names of Sanderson, Moffat and Holt I can find no death record for her. I assume her death record would have to be registered under her married name of Moffat. I'm at a brick wall.

You could try Moffatt.... ultimately, it was each person's own decision what they called themselves, and especially with women, you should expect the unexpected. If you cannot find this lady's death record, and she was 'last known' to have been in London, unmarried, then maybe she did, in fact , re-marry, and you should be looking for a marriage re cord under one of those names.

Carl White 04/09/2012 21:06:19

hi my name is carl white but i am trying to find out about my 2x great grandfather albert edward day he was born in wookey. on ancestry according to a military record they have stated he was as him being 20 and they put down year of record 1888. on another page it states clearly he signed up 1893 in cardiff. i have been told by family that somewhere there is a welsh connection so that tyes. also i have his marriage certificate which says he was 20 in 1888 he is a patient in 1891. and i have no record for 1871 or 1901 but the 1901 i think he was abroad with military. in 1911 census he states he was 39 this making him born in 1872 which one is correct?

I note that, regarding Ancestry, you say 'they have stated...'. The only sources that are worth taking any notice of are original sources, made at the time. You ask an interesting question: which age is correct. Which is likelier to be? Men could lie about their ages to get into the army when too young: they could lie about their ages when they married, so as not to appear much older, or much younger, than their wives. You may be best off looking across a wide-ish period at Albert Clay births in the Wookey area, and check them for the right father's name (as stated on the marriage certificate), and then once you have the birth, you'll know how accurate he really was about his age.

Lynette Bye 04/09/2012 21:05:15

Hi. I would like to find out when my Ireish ancester left Ireland by ship. I know it was around the mid 1800's. Also I would like find records of them. I know they came from Roscommon and their surname was Connor. My 3-4 x gr grandmother is a daughter but she remaind in England with her husband James Bye. Thank you.

Assuming the crossing was from Ireland to England (or Wales) you can't find shipping details: these were short domestic voyages, so passenger lists were not recorded.

Mark NIblett 04/09/2012 21:03:13

I am unable to find a possible baptism for my 4x great grandfather James Trickett. I have his marriage record to Margaret Holt 8.9.1821 but no fathers details are given. Having looked at possible deaths there are numerou for this lancashire name. Any suggestions please I have narrowed down to 1854-1859 with the purchase of childrens marriage certs...

Before General Registration records were introduced in July 1837, church marriages did not record father's names - and life becomes harder! I see that you know James was alive in 1854, so he should appear in the 1851 census. This will tell you where he was born, and thus where to seek his baptism. Some baptisms are indexed on this site, and many more are indexed on, but failing these, your next stop should be the relevant county record office, and you can enjoy exploring all the original records that are not yet on-line.