Thursday, 16 March 2017

Family history woes

I began a - supposed to be brief - foray into my Family History again in the cold grey days of January.  I did quite well (I thought) and even remembered to end my Ancestry membership before the appointed day - except they came back and offered my 3 more months' membership for the price of a month, which sounded a good deal.  So I carried on looking, followed my Hobbs family line back and was excited by the results.  Sent them off to my cousin in Romsey, but with some misgivings.  I had been sleeping badly, and hadn't looked properly and I had misgivings.  I checked again - wrong - someone had cobbled together about 5 different families on one family line, and whilst one was one of mine, the rest were irrelevant.  I began again, and have been continuing ever since, as Ancestry really ISN'T that user-friendly, and when your folk just do NOT appear in earlier censuses, and there are no marriages you can find which have links to banns and marriage lines, one quickly becomes moribund.  I am somewhat disinclined to order certificates willy nilly until I am absolutely certain I have the right person/people!

I am currently going round in circles with my g.g. grandfather who married Elizabeth Russell.  In one census they are in Peckham, living as relatives with a family (the wife nee Russell) , but claim to be Father-in-law and Mother-in-law, which I cannot work out to be possible unless the wife was her daughter, born out of wedlock and the only notion I have is that it might be her sister.  Which brings me a long way from tieing up my Hobbs/Russell children of which there were 9 (though sadly only 2 survived and they buried 7).  I guess I will have to bite the bullet and send for their marriage certificate to get this a step further.

Not that any of this is interesting to you folks!

Meanwhile, I made the most of lovely spring weather yesterday and gardened fitfully in between watching the jumps racing at Cheltenham (I am a life-long enthusiast).  Now some bits of my garden are minus weeds, which is a positive. I bought some seeds in Lidl and Wilko this week, so need to get them started off - peas, runner beans, green beans, purple beans and courgettes.  

I have been feeling off-colour today - heavy achey legs, and SO tired that I went back to bed this morning, but couldn't sleep.  I tried to buck myself up and made myself a Moroccan Chicken Soup from the BBC Good Food One Pot magazine I got this week (I want to cook everything in it).  The trouble was, by the time it was ready, I just couldn't face it.  In fact, the smell of it made me feel sick (tomato-y, and normally I would have loved it).  So I froze the lot and had fish and chips, and couldn't even face the fish!  Now I feel really bloated, like I have eaten an elephant . . .  Ah well, perhaps a good night's sleep will sort me out.


  1. Last free access weekend, I was able to go on Ancestry and trace two lines back to the early 1500's when parish records started -as far as I'm likely to get with a less than noble line. I now have two dead ends - a great great grandfather who was a mariner (married in Gosport but could have been from anywhere) and a maternal great grandmother. I can't find anyone who exactly matches her details on a census prior to her marriage, so I am starting to wonder if the story of one of my ancestors being a gypsy foundling may be true.

  2. Sounds like you've been overdoing it. It happens to me too - I ache so much after heavy gardening/allotmenteering that I can't get to sleep - and I don't bounce back like I used to. Luckily for me a relative on my husband's side has traced the Pesketts back to the late 17th century (pea sellers/pescods travelling between Winchester and Chichester) and my cousin has gone back the same distance with my mother's family and discovered they came over with the Hugenots and that my lovely grandfather was a Dr Barnado's boy because both parents died when he was a baby. It's probably my turn to research my father's side and a good excuse to venture to Cumbria where my grandfather was born. Although family legend has it that we are related to the Francis Derham who was stretched on the rack by Henry VIII for enjoying a dalliance with Katherine Howard. I would love to find out if there is any truth in that story or whether it was cobbled together in the era of the TV series The Six Wives of Henry VIII.

  3. I am interested in twists and turns of other folks' ancestry searches--the frustrations, the brick walls, the joyful moment when we fit in a piece of the puzzle. I frequently remind myself that census enumerators were not infallible; surely when faced with the complexities of a multi-generational household there were often errors made in entering names and relationships. I've found several vital events docs which I KNEW were wrong!
    Re feeling 'under the weather:' I'm convinced that when I feel poorly today, it may not be because of what I did yesterday. More likely a number of 'yesterdays' have caught up with me and knocked me flat! Very frustrating, and so true that as we advance in years it takes longer to recuperate.

  4. Must get some more vegetable seeds for mum and sister

  5. Grandad always used to tell us that we were Irish Gypsies! but actually he was descended from Suffolk farmers for quite a long way back - not half as interesting.

  6. I have to delv a little into my family history as I may need an Irish passport at some point in the future. I've been given some names to start with and am delighted to discover that my Grandfather was born in Belfast. I may be asking you for advice!!!

    I hope you're feeling better now. Was it a virus do you think? Big