iwiKiwi

A Kiwi in search of her Irish, English & Scottish tribes

Category: Genealogy (Page 3 of 3)

A Canterbury Tale

Just back from a fantastic few days away in Canterbury (England) – it was a tutorial weekend for my correspondence course with the Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies. We had lectures on wills and probate, parish records and palaeography, with some hands on exercises, and lots of opportunity for research in their amazing library and discussion with lecturers, tutors and fellow students. Nothing like being with a bunch of like-minded souls!

The course is self-paced and I have been pretty slack so far – while I’ve spent some time on course work, I haven’t submitted any assignments yet. Erk. However, am feeling re-energised and motivated and have already done an hour’s work tonight. *shines halo* Plus, I have some other students on my back now nagging me, giving me deadlines.

I have to submit a “Seize Quartiers”, which involves a (non-computer-generated) dropline pedigree chart up to my great great grandparents, plus accompanying source citations. This is almost completed, just a little tidying up of the chart layout, and listing all the citations in an understandable report.

The other assignment is my autobiography, and I’ve not really enjoyed doing this, though it will be a fantastic genealogical resource for my descendents one day. The guide word limit is up to 3000 words, though I know other students have written much more. I’ve completed a first draft, and this week need to embellish and edit. And maybe add some photos.

My deadline for submission is Monday week (that’s the 21st of March) – wish me luck!

NZ Research plan – review

Auckland Archives office

  • Customs Inwards letter – The High Commissioner for New Zealand, London – Alexander Wright – passenger to Auckland per “Rimutaka” leaving London 12 June 1908 (possibly great grandfather)

I decided not to visit the Auckland Archives in the end. I wasn’t sure the item would be connected to my family at all. It will keep till I have more time.

Wellington Archives office

  • Probate file for Patrick James O’Rourke – 1908 (great great uncle)
  • Probate file for George Tunnecliff – 1912 (great great great grandfather)
  • Probate file for Alice Tunnecliff – 1919 great great great uncle’s wife)
  • Probate file for Henry Richard Florey – 1916 (great great grandfather)
  • Probate file for Elizabeth Ann Florey – 1922 (great great grandfather’s wife)
  • Probate file for Michael McGonnell – 1929 (great great grandfather)
  • Probate file for George Tunnecliff – 1942 (great great great uncle)

Viewed and photographed all these files, apart from the one of the ones I most wanted to see, Henry Richard Florey’s probate file. It wasn’t available as it had been requested by someone else! I can order a copy to be made for $20, which I think I’ll do.

  • Coroners Inquest Report for Henry (Harry) Florey (great great grandfather)
  • Coroners Inquest Report for Annie Florey (great great grandmother)

Wasn’t sure if these existed, and a very lovely staff member helped me locate both. Unfortunately, I couldn’t seem to enlarge the microfilm image to A4 size on the machine connected to the printer, and I didn’t have a USB drive to save the images using the other machines. So, I ended up printing A5 size images, which are incredibly hard to read. It wasn’t till afterwards that I realised I could have used the memory card in my camera…. *sigh* Anyway, I know they’re there now, and I can always go back when I’m next in town. In the meantime, I can try and transcribe from the printouts.

National Library, Wellington

  • NZ Tablet – obituary for Bartholomew O’Rourke – 1923 (great great grandfather)
  • NZ Tablet – obituary for Bridget Power O’Rourke – 1914 (great great grandmother)

The National Library is in a state of turmoil at the moment, with its collections located all over the place while they are redeveloping their main building on Molesworth  Street. The Library does hold issues of the NZ Tablet on microfilm for the years I’m interested in, but the films were not at the Reading Room on 77 Thorndon Quay.  The Library building reopens in 2012, so I might try and get my father to investigate then.

Other

  • Locate cassette tape of Lally Coppinger’s interview (first cousin, twice removed)

Found!!!!!! And in the sixth box I checked of over 60 in our storage unit. I only had time to listen to a few minutes of the tape at my parents’ place, and it sounds great, can’t wait to listen to it all. Need to locate a cassette player first.

  • Take photograph of St Mary of the Angels church, Wellington – grandparents’ wedding venue

Done!

  • Remuera cemetery, Auckland – locate burial plot for Annie Florey

After asking on the Trade Me genealogy forum about Remuera cemeteries, I emailed St Mark’s Church to check if they had any records of Annie Florey being buried there. I received a reply very promptly, but unfortunately there is no record of her burial there. With time tight in Auckland, I decided to follow this up at a later date.

  • Take photographs of living relatives!

Done!

  • Identify as many people/places in photographs as possible in my father’s collection
  • Scan older photographs and documents in my father’s collection

I had planned to spend several evenings looking over old photographs and documents with my father, but there wasn’t enough time. I did, however, pull out a whole heap of things to scan – what a treasure trove there was stashed away! I think there is probably more packed away in boxes from when my parents moved house. I started scanning away, but realised what a mammoth task it was going to be (when I’d rather be sitting around chatting to my family), so I took a pile into the local Kodak shop and got them to copy them on to a DVD for me. My father had already had some borrowed photos copied there, so I got a copy of that DVD too. I now have a HUGE amount of work to do sorting them all out.

  • Collect information about paternal grandfather’s life for future assignment

Umm.. epic FAIL on this one. I’m hoping I’ll be able to do this over the phone and by email with my father.

I also met extended family at my grandmother’s funeral and at church one Sunday, though in both cases we weren’t able to chat for long. Was lovely to put some faces to names, though, and I hope to keep in contact with a couple of them by email.

Overall, I was pleased with what I managed to achieve, though I’m now seriously homesick and wanting to go back. Still, lots of research to be done this side of the world first!

NZ Research plan

Auckland Archives office

  • Customs Inwards letter – The High Commissioner for New Zealand, London – Alexander Wright – passenger to Auckland per “Rimutaka” leaving London 12 June 1908 (possibly great grandfather)

Wellington Archives office

  • Probate file for Patrick James O’Rourke – 1908 (great great uncle)
  • Probate file for George Tunnecliff – 1912 (great great great grandfather)
  • Probate file for Alice Tunnecliff – 1919 great great great uncle’s wife)
  • Probate file for Henry Richard Florey – 1916 (great great grandfather)
  • Probate file for Elizabeth Ann Florey – 1922 (great great grandfather’s wife)
  • Probate file for Michael McGonnell – 1929 (great great grandfather)
  • Probate file for George Tunnecliff – 1942 (great great great uncle)
  • Coroners Inquest Report for Henry (Harry) Florey (great great grandfather)
  • Coroners Inquest Report for Annie Florey (great great grandmother)

National Library, Wellington

  • NZ Tablet – obituary for Bartholomew O’Rourke – 1923 (great great grandfather)
  • NZ Tablet – obituary for Bridget Power O’Rourke – 1914 (great great grandmother)

Other

  • Locate cassette tape of Lally Coppinger’s interview (first cousin, twice removed)
  • Take photograph of St Mary of the Angels church, Wellington – grandparents’ wedding venue
  • Remuera cemetery, Auckland – locate burial plot for Annie Florey
  • Take photographs of living relatives!
  • Identify as many people/places in photographs as possible in my father’s collection
  • Scan older photographs and documents in my father’s collection
  • Collect information about paternal grandfather’s life for future assignment

I think this might be a bit ambitious, given that we’re only in New Zealand for three weeks, and it’s supposed to be a holiday for the whole family, and not just me! Reviewing the list, I’m not sure it’s worth going to the Auckland Archives office this trip, as I think the only time I’ll have to do it, will be just after a 26 hour flight with three kids. Yikes!

Two more sleeps and we’re off – can’t wait!

WDYTYA Live 2011

I’ve finally booked!

We arrive back from New Zealand on the Friday afternoon, so I’ve been tossing up whether I’ll be compos mentis, or a pile of jibbering jet-laggedness.  Still, can’t pass up one of the genealogical highlights of the year, so I’ve bought a Q-jump ticket for the Sunday, and booked into three workshops and an Ask the Expert session.  (Will have to figure out what I’m going to “ask” at that.)

I also have a Beginner’s Tutorial weekend coming up for my course with IHGS in Canterbury in March, which I need to book before I go away next week.  Have to psych the hubby up for a weekend with the three kids on his own.   I’m hoping this will really push me forward on the assignment front (aka get my A into G and do some work), plus I get to meet fellow students. Oh, and a kidfree weekend! 😀

Formulating a research plan (of sorts)

In February we’re off to New Zealand for a three week holiday. In 2007 we left with our two kids to come and live in England for 18 months. Four years and one baby later, we’re going back to catch up with family and enjoy a Kiwi summer! Of course, I hope to do a bit of genealogy research while I’m there, but not too much or hubby and the kids will get grumpy. So, a little bit of looking up dead people, and a lot of chatting to live people. With a runaround a cemetery or two for the kids.

Right now I’m going through Archway with my main New Zealand surnames, and seeing what probate records I will be able to order and view. I’ll only be able to get to the Wellington and Auckland Archives offices, and I won’t be able to spend days in them, so have to organise my time carefully. Happily, the hotel I booked us into for a couple nights near Auckland airport, is extremely close to the Auckland Archives! Who knew?? (I certainly didn’t when booking. Yay for serendipity!)

I’ll need to get a Reader’s card – will have to work out the logistics of that time-wise, and then I can order up the records online, so they’re ready for me when I go in. Well, that’s the plan anyway. And I also need to find out how many records I can order up/view at a time. Maybe I’ll need to put my requests in order of preference, just in case I run out of time?

Sadly, my Great Aunt Audrey in Gisborne, who I had planned to fly up and see while over in NZ, died last month. I may still fly up there, depending on what else I’m able to do, though I think I might just wait till next trip.

Another job to do – find the cassette tape which has (first, twice removed) Cousin Lally talking about her family on it. I recorded this in 1991, when I visited her in California. If it hasn’t perished, I really want to transcribe it before it’s lost for good. I’m not even sure how much information she gave me at the time – but it has to be better than nothing. The thing about the tape is… it’s in a box. In our storage unit in Wellington. Along with lots and lots and lots of other boxes. Yeah, so wish me luck on that one! (Actually, I’m hoping our numbering system and Excel spreadsheet of box contents may be of some assistance – we shall see.)

I’d also love to find the sources of the newspaper clippings I have (or rather, the scans of some newspaper clippings). One obituary I’m fairly sure is from the New Zealand Tablet, so I can check that in the National Library in Wellington, and also check if there are any more obituaries for that family.

And I am very much looking forward to seeing my Nanna. And the rest of my family!

Follow Friday ~ CityArk’s Medway Ancestors

I mentioned in yesterday’s post that I had found James Florey and Elizabeth Jane Knott’s marriage, and their daughter Jane Elizabeth’s baptism, in FamilySearch.

Of course, what I really wanted to do was view the records in the parish registers. Fortunately, Frindsbury, where James and Elizabeth’s marriage took place, and the parish of St Margaret where Jane was baptised, both lie within the district of Medway. And the Medway Council provide an enormous boon to family and local historians – images of real live actual records, online!

Medway Ancestors is Medway Council’s project to publish images of the original parish registers in its custody on the Medway Archives web site CityArk. The registers are held on deposit from the local parish churches and cover the Rochester Archdeaconry area, extending from Dartford and Gravesend in the west to Rainham in the east and focusing on the Medway Towns.

The project has been made possible by a grant of £49,500.00 by the Heritage Lottery Fund under the Your Heritage scheme.

James and Elizabeth’s marriage record
All Saints Parish (Frindsbury, Kent, England), Register of Marriages 1813-1822 [P150/1/10], p138, James Florey and Elizabeth Jane Knott, 05 Mar 1820; digital images, Medway CityArk (http://cityark.medway.gov.uk/ : accessed 23 Nov 2010).

Jane’s baptism record
St Margaret Parish (Rochester, Kent, England), Register of Baptisms 1813-1832 [P305/1/7], p 189, Jane Elizabeth Flora, 02 Jan 1825; digital images, Medway CityArk (http://cityark.medway.gov.uk/ : accessed 30 Dec 2010).

For lists of parishes covered and tips on how to use the site, check out Medway Ancestors.

Follow Friday is an ongoing series at GeneaBloggers.

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