Bill's Genealogy Blog

Bill Buchanan is a long-time genealogy enthusiast, living at Onoway, Alberta, Canada. This blog will describe my experiences as I research my family history and help others.

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Location: Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada

I am a retired online school teacher. During July 2007 - January 2010, and September 2011 - March 2014, I provided part-time support for https://familysearch.org This is very rewarding. I have helped many with the free Personal Ancestral File 5 (PAF5) software. I continue to help others with the Family Tree and related FamilySearch products.
Since April 2010, I was an assistant director of Edmonton Riverbend Family History Centre. In recent months I was director of this FHC. I have a FHC blog at Bill's Family History Center Blog For information the Latter-day Saints and family history click http://mormon.org/

Friday, February 11, 2011

Free and Easy Research in England
In family history research, there is always an element of luck. No matter how good your skills are, the records you are looking for may not exist, or may be camouflaged to the point that they are unrecognizable. Still, if you know where to look and how to look, you can make wonderful progress very quickly. I would like to share an example from yesterday.
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Yesterday morning I had an email from someone in South Africa, interested in researching his ancestors in England. I was intrigued by the fact that he was researching an Ing family, one of my own main lines.
"Henry Ing was born in Swindon, Wiltshire, on 20th March 1901, at the Sands, Swindon, U.D.  (not sure what the UD means)  Henry’s father was Edwin Ing, and his mother’s name was Clara Annie Knight Ing, formerly Chapman."

I found only one possible family in the free 1881 census of England and Wales at FamilySearch.org

1881 British Census
Name Relation Marital Status Gender Age Birthplace Occupation
Edwin R. ING Head M Male 50 Aylesbury, Wiltshire, England Chemist & Druggist
Adelaide ING Wife M Female 50 Chiseldon, Wiltshire, England
Adelaide ING Daur U Female 23 Swindon, Wiltshire, England
Elizabeth ING Daur U Female 21 Swindon, Wiltshire, England
Edwin ING Son U Male 16 Swindon, Wiltshire, England
Margarett ING Daur U Female 14 Swindon, Wiltshire, England
Fredrick ING Son U Male 10 Swindon, Wiltshire, England
William ING Son U Male 7 Swindon, Wiltshire, England
Mary GREENWOOD Serv U Female 20 Brinkworth, Wiltshire, England Servant Domestic
Elizabeth ROGERS Serv U Female 18 Cricklade, Wiltshire, England Servant Domestic
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Source Information: Dwelling Walton House Bath Road
Census Place Swindon, Wiltshire, England Family History Library Film 1341487
Public Records Office Reference RG11 Piece / Folio 2018 / 8 Page Number 10
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Search/frameset_search.asp

If so, here are his parents and siblings. Older siblings might already be married by this time, so the 1871 census would be an excellent source.

I told him "If you have access to a Family History Centre, you can access this and other England censuses for free, and should be able to easily find the previous generation." [There are FHCs in South Africa.]

Here is the marriage of Edwin R. Ing and Adelaide Baden registered in Highworth, Wiltshire at http://www.freebmd.org.uk
Surname First name(s) District Vol Page
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Marriages Sep 1855
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BADEN ADELAIDE Highworth 5a 5
ING Edwin Robert Highworth 5a 5

Further searches in FreeBMD brought up a list of Ing children, whose births were registered in Highworth.

On the free Familysearch.org site, here is Adelaide's birth, complete with her parents' names:
England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975
Name: Adelaide Baden
Gender: Female
Baptism/Christening Date: 31 Dec 1830
Baptism/Christening Place: Chisledon, Wiltshire, England
Birth Date: 09 Jul 1830
Birthplace: Chisledon, Wiltshire, England
Father's Name: Andrew Baden
Mother's Name: Jane
Indexing Project (Batch) Number: C02267-7
System Origin: England-EASy
Source Film Number: 1279399

And her parent's marriage:
England Marriages, 1538–1973
Groom's Name: Andrew Baden
Bride's Name: Jane Chowlls
Marriage Date: 1816
Marriage Place: Chisledon, Wiltshire, England
Indexing Project (Batch) Number: M15497-1
System Origin: England-VR
Source Film Number: 1279399
Reference Number: 2:TV0C7C

This tree on FamilySearch shows Andrew Baden's parents:
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Search/frameset_search.asp
Husband's Name
William BADEN Born: Abt. 1767 Place:
Married: 4 Nov 1792 Place: Chisledon, Wiltshire, England
Wife's Name
Mary FENNELL Born: Abt. 1771 Place:

So in about 2 hours I was able to go back from 1901 to about 1767 on one branch of his ancestors, using basically two free sources: http://www.familysearch.org/ and http://www.freebmd.org.uk/  With access to the additional censuses and records at a Family History Center, much additional research would be possible for free.
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Last night at the Family History Center, I helped someone doing research in Canada. She was building a family tree on http://www.ancestry.ca/  but we could find no way to download the information she submitted there. She also subscribes to http://www.new.familysearch.org/ where we were able to connect her to a family tree contributed by her mother and her brother going back several generations. On http://www.findmypast.co.uk/ we found her grandmother's immigration to Canada in 1949, which she found especially thrilling. "Hey, I know these people!!!" We also found the marriage of the grandmother's parents in http://www.freebmd.org.uk/

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The FHC's new inkjet printer/scanner combo is out of ink again. Yesterday afternoon I was successful in giving network access to the old HP LJ1100 that is connected to the admin computer, and making it the default printer for the 5 patron-use computers.

In the evening I installed a new color cartridge in the inkjet so it is up and running, but it is ruinously expensive to operate as the default printer. And nearly all printing in the FHC works better in black and white anyway!

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