Category Archives: Genealogy

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.