Tuesday, 30 December 2008

University of Strathclyde lecture by Lord Lyon King of Arms

The Lord Lyon King of Arms, William David Hamilton Sellar, will be giving a lecture at the University of Strathclyde, as part of its "town and gown" lecture series, on Wednesday 18th February 2009. The venue is Lecture Room 1, the McCance Building, 16 Richmond Street, Glasgow, G1 1XQ. Doors will open at 5.30pm for a 6pm start, and the topic will be "Supporters in Heraldry".

Whilst the event will be free, admission is by ticket only, and these will be made available three weeks prior to the lecture from:

The Centre for Lifelong Learning, Level 7, Graham Hills Building, 40 George Street, Glasgow G1 1QE.
Tel: 0141 548 4828
e-mail: mary.mcwhinnie@strath.ac.uk

For those not in the know, the Lord Lyon King of Arms is the head honcho at the Court of the Lord Lyon, which is based in Edinburgh and which is the legal body responsible for all things to do with heraldry in Scotland.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

National Archives of Scotland announces files to be released

The National Archives of Scotland has announced the 1470 or so files which it will be releasing on January 1st 2009 as part of statutory obligations under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002, which sees the 30 year closure of government files expire, transforming them into 'historical documents'.

The list is available as a PDF file (requiring an Adobe reader) at www.nas.gov.uk/documents/Gfilesopen2009articlelist.pdf .

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Monday, 29 December 2008

University of Glasgow course - Researching and presenting local history

A course entitled "Researching and Presenting Local History" is being taught by Dr. Ronnie Scott at the University of Glasgow from January 14th. The following are the details:

Do you have a favourite building, place or organisation you'd like to
know more about? Interested in researching the history of your house?
Come and be guided through the process of researching local history, and
pick up some helpful hints on presenting your results. The course
introduces a wide variety of sources, including official records, maps,
photographs, censuses, directories and newspapers.
Presented by Ronnie Scott BA MPhil PhD, £56.00
19.00-21.00 Wednesdays from 14 January 2009
(8 meetings) St. Andrew's Building, Glasgow University

More details: http://www.gla.ac.uk:443/departments/adulteducation/

To book:
http://www.gla.ac.uk/departments/adulteducation/courses/enrolment.html

Information for students with disabilities:
http://www.gla.ac.uk/departments/adulteducation/students/important.html

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Digging Up Your Roots - new series

A new eight part series of BBC Radio Scotland's Digging Up Your Roots returns this Sunday 4th January 2009 at 12.05pm. In the first episode, presenter Claire White, assisted by genealogists Bruce Durie and Billy Kenefick, looks at how centuries of migration have affected Scotland.

Included in the first episode is the story of the Michael Reilly's Coatbridge Irish Genealogy Project and the story of John Millar's Lithuanian ancestry.


For more on the series, visit www.bbc.co.uk/radioscotland/features/digging_up_your_roots/.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

There's been a murrrderrr....!

The website of the National Archives of Scotland has an online case study depicting the records it holds concerning a 100 year old murder. On December 21st 1908, 82 year old Marion Gilchrist was bludgeoned to death in her house whilst her maidservant was out buying a newspaper. A man called Oscar Slater was found guilty of the crime, and served over 18 years detention, in what many belived to be a grave miscarriage of Scottish justice. Amongst those fighting to clear his name was Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

To read the story and to examine the holdings of the National Archives, which reveal that story, visit www.nas.gov.uk/about/081214.asp .

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Famous Scots exhibition update

The ScotlandsPeople Centre website has provided an update on the forthcoming Famous Scots exhibition:

Starting with Billy Connolly we are exploring the family history of six well-known Scots throughout the Homecoming Scotland 2009 year. We will be looking into their ancestry in a series of six exhibitions, and we will show you how to trace your own Scottish family history in the ScotlandsPeople Centre.

Each of the exhibitions will deal with aspects of carrying out your family search. All the documents we will use are publicly-available, and will reveal aspects of the Famous Scot’s past – their ancestors’ occupations, where they lived, and how their lives were shaped by the changing communities to which they belonged.

An interactive resource provides a step-by-step guide to help you begin your own journey of discovery. That journey can continue in the ScotlandsPeople Centre when you leave the exhibition.

The exhibitions are being staged in the very centre of Scotland’s family history archive – surrounded by tens of thousands of registers in which the lives of Scots from the 16th century to the present are inscribed.

In the meantime, some information on many famous Scots can be found at the Scotland's People records website at www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk/content/help/index.aspx?r=546&453

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Ulster Historical Foundation and IFHF records - rate of exchange

For some time, the Ulster Historic Foundation has bizarrely made available the same birth, marriage and death records at two separate websites, and at two separate tariffs. On the UHF's pages at the Irish Family History Federation website (Antrim at http://antrim.brsgenealogy.com/ and Down at http://down.brsgenealogy.com/) each record costs 5 Euros to view. The main UHF website at www.ancestryireland.com/database.php has the same records available for £4 each, or £2 if you are a guild member (i.e. if you are happy to pay an annual membership of £30).

For a considerable time I had advocated a boycott of both the IFHF and UHF sites on cost grounds and on the lack of fields to help narrow searches down. However, with its considerably improved search interface and its reduction in prices, I recently came around to the much improved IFHF site, but with the rate of Sterling now plummetting fast against both the Euro and the Dollar, I should advise that it is now unfortunately much more expensive to use the IFHF sites to search for records for counties Antrim and Down. Five Euros is now worth about £4.80, which means if you use the IFHF site, each record will cost an extra 80 pence compared to the UHF site.

This is a real pity, as the IFHF have made considerable leaps and bounds with their site in recent months, and until just a couple of months ago, it was much cheaper to use than the UHF site. The reality of the credit crunch is that the exchange rate has unfortunately undone a great deal of the organisation's recent good work. It is to be hoped that the IFHF may look again at its rates in light of recent developments, as it is becoming increasingly more difficult to afford from a British point of view.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Sunday, 28 December 2008

Wanlass family history mystery

I have been contacted by Jay Wanless Southwich concerning a family mystery of his, which he has asked me to share with readers, to see if they may have a connection. Jay is trying to find out about a Scottish ancestor, James Wanlass (1825 – 1895), a miner who didn’t know his parents, but who shares a Y-chromosomal DNA profile with a baker named James Wanless (1827 – 1877). They both lived in the Edinburgh area, and Jay thinks they may have been cousins.

Jay has created a blog on the subject at http://www.jameswanlassmystery.blogspot.com/ , so if you fancy a challenge, or if you have a connection, do pop along to have a look!

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Memorial to Ayrshire postman who died in blizzard in 1908

A memorial service to Robert Cunningham, a postman who died whilst out delivering mail in a blizzard near the Ayrshire town of Ballantrae a hundred years ago, is to be held at Ballantrae Parish Church. A wreath is also to be laid in his memory on the moor where he died.

For more on the story, visit http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/glasgow_and_west/7801303.stm

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Plea for return of William Wallace letter

A Scottish MSP has made a plea for the return to Scotland of the only known document issued by William Wallace. Held by the City of Lubeck, the letter, written in 1297, was addressed to the mayors of Lubeck and Hamburg, and informed them that Scottish ports were no longer under English control.

The full story is at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/tayside_and_central/7796121.stm

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Irish attempt to legalise heraldic arms

Dick Eastman has posted a note on his blog concerning a Bill which has been introduced in the Irish Senate, which aims to establish a proper legislative basis for all Grants of Arms made by the Chief Heralds of Ireland from 1943. The National Library last year stopped the Office of the Chief Herald from making any further awards of arms due to concerns that it had no legal powers to do so.

Dick has an earlier post at http://blog.eogn.com/eastmans_online_genealogy/2007/10/irish-coats-of-.html outlining the problems, whilst the proposed legislation can be read at http://www.oireachtas.ie/documents/bills28/bills/2008/6608/b6608s.pdf .

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from SGNE

It's been one heck of a year here at SGNE! When I first started this blog this time last year, I wasn't really sure what I was hoping to do with it at first. Working as a genealogist in Scotland, and with a background at the BBC, I felt that there was a lot happening in Scotland that the genealogical community here was not aware of, not just in Scotland but further afield, and so this blog was created to basically help spread the word. I have been truly humbled by the support I have received for this from around the world, including the family history magazine community here in Britain, family history societies in the UK, Australia and America, records providers, and more. So to all of you, a big thank you, and rest assured, the work will continue next year!

Twenty years ago, if you were interested in genealogy, you would invariably have to pay a substantial fortune to pursue the hobby. The internet has truly revolutionised that, not just in making content more accessible, but in creating a sea change with regard to its acceptability as a hobby worth pursuing. History was always perceived to be written by those who won the wars (and often created them), controlled the economy and the laws, and shouted at us from the pulpits. Now we can read about the history that matters - our own ancestry - and in this regard, the whole area of history has become increasingly democratised. As a wee boy at school, first in England and then in Northern Ireland, I had to learn some of the most dreariest topics in my history class, but in the last decade my understanding of Scottish, Irish and British history has gone through the roof simply because I have identified where my family story actually connected to it. Family history can help define your identity in a way that no flag or anthem ever could, and long may its popularity as an ever growing hobby continue!

Fast as the revolution in accessibility to our heritage records is, do alwasy bear in mind that some material on the internet can at times be innaccurate, so if you are planning to research your family history, always check the provenance of the sources, and never accept someone else's tree just because they say that it is correct! Do use your local family history societies also - the Scottish Association of Family History Societies is the umbrella group for those here in Scotland (www.safhs.org.uk), and is doing some amazing work, including the newly updated graveyards CD, which identifies over 3500 burial spots and crematoria, and where to find records relating to them.

Not everything is online, and you may find that at times you will need to hire professional help. At Scotland's Greatest Story we charge by the hour (not a standard "£300 for one line" etc, which could return info on ten generations or just two generations) and we keep you appraised of progress throughout the research process, with no job too small. If you've hit a brick wall, we'd be happy to evaluate it. In the last year I've personally helped many people, ranging from a member of the House of Lords to my local butcher! Everyone' story is just as interesting as the last. If you haven't caught the latest issue of Family History Monthly, there is a competition where we are offering a free day's research in Edinburgh, so you have to be in it to win it!

Finally, in the next week or so I will post a list of some of the big developments heading our way next year, but in the meantime, Nollaig Chrideil agus Bliadhna Mhath Ur - Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Monday, 22 December 2008

1911 Irish census update at 6pm tonight

Census returns for Antrim, Kerry and Down will be going online at 6.00pm tonight. In addition, new pages will be on the site outlining what life was like for those living in Kerry and Belfast in that year. Some content is already online (see image).

The National Archives of Ireland have also announced that Donegal, Cork, Wexford, Galway and Offaly (King's) will be released in March, and that monthly releases will then follow, with several counties in each batch, until July when all of 1911 should have been released.

With thanks to Wicklow Rose at Rootschat.


Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Discover My Past Scotland - update

The new Discover My Past Scotland magazine from brightsolid, which can be subscribed to and read at www.discovermypast.co.uk, can now also be downloaded from the site in PDF format.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Family Search update

The Family Search website has added over 15 million new indexed records to its Record Search pilot, all from the 1850 and 1870 U.S. Censuses. The records are linked to the digital images of the originals.

The new records can be searched for free at FamilySearch.org (Click Search Records, then Record Search pilot).

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

1911 English and Welsh census

Whilst Homecoming Scotland will be a year long hooley for every Scot to join in, there also another big party happening next year, which sadly Scotland will be missing out on until 2012.

Whilst the 1911 census for Ireland is slowly being released in the next few months, with Dublin already out, and Kerry, Antrim and Down released next week, the English and Welsh 1911 census is also being released, after a massive digitisation project from
FindmyPast, Scotland's People's sister organisation down south (with both companies owned by brightsolid).

For those who registered with the 1911 census website at www.1911census.co.uk , a beta version of the new website on which the records will be hosted has been available for the last couple of days, and only until mid next week, for a handful of counties only. Whilst a condition of access has been not to reveal the beta site's address, I can report that on first impressions, the site looks good, providing options to view transcripts of the results or the actual digitised images (slightly pricier). The main release is not far off, and will be well worth the wait.

Unfortunately, Scottish legislation is different to that covering the census releases down south and in Ireland, meaning that 1911 Scotland will not be released until 2012 - though I suppose it is always nice to have something to look forward to! However, if your Scottish ancestors were based elsewhere in the British Isles in 1911, then 2009 is going to be as big a year for your research as it will be for our English, Welsh and Irish neighbours.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Friday, 19 December 2008

Scotland's People website update

The Scotland's People website at www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk will be updated on January 1st 2009 to include 1908 birth images, 1933 marriage images and 1958 death images. Some further datasets are also due to be announced in the very near future.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Islands Books Trust 2009 events programme

News announcement from the Islands Books Trust:

The Islands Book Trust has announced its programme of 28 events in 2009, including 3 events in Skye, a week- long visit to the Faroes in July, as well as the usual full programme of talks, conferences, and visits to islands in Lewis and Harris, and Uist and Barra.

The main event will be a 3-day conference in South Harris from 10-12 September on Emigration from the Outer Hebrides to fit in with Scotland’s Year of Homecoming. The conference will be opened by Professor Tom Devine and closed by Linda Fabiani, and includes the possibility of a boat trip to St Kilda. Other boat trips are planned to Kinlochresort, Scarp, the Monachs, Pabbay, (South) Rona, and Valamus and Loch Claidh in South Pairc. A new ‘Walk the Talk’ series will feature guided walks to deserted settlements in Benbecula, Eriskay, Vatersay, Vallay, and North Skye.

Speakers at talks include Professor Donald Macleod, Peter Cunningham, Colin Scott Mackenzie, Alasdair MacEachen, Bill Lawson, Greta Mackenzie, Cailean Maclean, John Love, Flora MacDonald, and Dods Macfarlane.

Commenting on the programme, John Randall (chairman) said: ‘We have tried to offer something for everyone interested in the history and culture of the islands. It is once again a record number of events. We aim to bring together outside speakers and people from local communities to share experiences and learn from each other. I am particularly pleased that we have 3 events next year in Skye, including one in Gaelic.’

Details of the programme are on www.theislandsbooktrust.com and will be sent to members with the Trust’s January newsletter. For further information, including membership of the Trust, contact Alayne Bartyon on 01851 820946 or email alayne@theislandsbooktrust.com

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

UlsterHeritage website - All Things Ulster

Whilst I work as a Scottish based genealogist, and mainly on Scottish research, my home town is actually Carrickfergus, in the easternmost Ulster county of Antrim. As I am sure anyone from Northern Ireland will understand, it's an origin that I am in parts fiercely proud of, as much as I am of my Scottish heritage, and in other parts, deeply ashamed. My mum always talks about people who 'could make two stones fight', and she could easily have been talking about the divided communities in Ulster. But this is also the land that came up with the 'Ulster fry', Bushmills whiskey and a quair bit of craic along the way! Clearly the province was once touched by the Lord God himself - it's just such a pity that we spent so long arguing about which community he visited first! Thankfully, that's all joining the history books at long last.

It is rare to come across a website on Ulster that is not tribalistic in one way or another, but gets right through to the core on the province's identity without siding with any one culture or political slant. I was e-mailed tonight by an American gent called Barry McCain, who runs such a website of interest to those with Ulster ancestry, whether that be Ulster Scots (Scotch Irish), English or Gaelic Irish. The UlsterHeritage website at www.ulsterheritage.com carries posts in Irish, Ulster Scots and English, on matters of local interest and history, as well as various essays and other material in an online magazine, and more. The site also hosts the Ulster Heritage DNA project, which aims to provide ancestral information based on research into various Y chromosome DNA studies.

This is a site as much for those in Ulster today as it is for those in her diaspora, wherever they are in the world. Highly recommended - and a huge thanks to Barra for his efforts.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Family history in the Western Isles

The Hebrides tend to be the part of Scotland that mainland Scots tend to overlook when dealing with Scottish genealogy - so thank God for the Gaels, and the work that they are doing to promote their family history!

A few sites I'd like to draw attention to that are well worth exploring. The first is www.hebrideanconnections.com which is a portal for those with ancestry in Bernera, Kinloch, Pairc and Uig, on the Isle of Lewis. The site contains over 70,000 records of people, places and stories from the island, compiled by several local comainn eachdraidh (local history societies). From the website, the following is the site's clear ambition:

"Data from the communities of Berneray in the Sound of Harris and Carloway on Lewis is currently being input. The project is gradually expanding to include North Tolsta, North Lochs, Ness, and Westside, and ultimately we hope the whole of the Outer Hebrides."

In other words, watch this space...! An excellent resource.

Also of interest is the Angus MacLeod Archive at www.angusmacleodarchive.org.uk, which hosts a great deal of material from the late Angus 'Ease' MacLeod MBE, who passed away in 2002. Although Angus was from the South Lochs area of Lewis, the archive goes much further afield in its scope, and is therefore another wonderful resource for those with Hebridean blood.

Finally, do pop along to the Island Books Trust at www.theislandsbooktrust.com, which has a magnificent range of local history books and more from the Western Isles.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

1911 Irish census update news

The National Archives of Ireland has announced that the 1911 Irish census for the counties of Antrim, Kerry and Down will be going online on December 23rd at www.census.nationalarchives.ie .

I've been fortunate to be able to download some Belfast entries already (see 1911 Irish census update draws ever nearer) - it is definitely worth the wait!

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Nine Incorporated Trades of Dundee

A useful site at www.standrewschurch.btinternet.co.uk/Contents.htm contains potted histories of each of the Nine Incorporated Trades of Dundee. These are the bakers, cordiners, glovers, tailors, bonnetmakers, flshers, hammermen, weavers and dyers.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Monday, 15 December 2008

Genes Reunited - new look website

Honest, you turn your back for just two minutes...!

Genes Reunited has had a bit of a facelift, a very much needed facelift, and it now looks great.

Still playing with the new look site, but so far it seems a lot easier to do things than before, and much better organised. A big thumbs up...!

Worth having a look at www.genesreunited.com

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

2011 Scottish Census plans revealed

From the General Register Office for Scotland (abridged):

Scotland's next census will include new questions on language, household income and national identity, it was announced today.

And for the first time, most people will be able to complete their household questionnaire online when the census - Scotland's biggest and most comprehensive population survey - is held on March 27, 2011.

The Scottish Government today published a Policy Statement giving details of the plans for the census. Parliamentary approval of the census proposals will be sought in early 2010.

The new language questions will ask how well people speak English and if they use any languages other than English, for example Gaelic, Scots or British Sign Language, at home. Under ethnic group and national identity, new tick boxes are provided for English, Welsh, Northern Irish, British, gypsy/traveller and Polish. There is a new 'African, Caribbean or Black' category and a new tick box for 'Other Ethnic Group'. People will also be given the option of describing themselves as 'Scottish', 'English', 'British', 'Polish', 'Indian' or 'Other'. A question on household income will be included for the first time, with people able to indicate their weekly or annual income.

Personal information collected in the census is kept confidential for 100 years. The information collected is used only for the production of statistics and for statistical research. It can only be accessed by a small number of people who must ensure it stays confidential and who would face prosecution if they disclosed it.

The census will be carried out by the Registrar General for Scotland and his staff in the General Register Office for Scotland, with the help of 12 specialist contractors.


The full press release is at www.scotland.gov.uk/News/Releases/2008/12/11142331

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Medical family history tree

Here's a useful new site from our American friends. The US Surgeon General recently promoted Thanksgiving as an opportunity to explore family history with your relatives, specifically to identify health risks that may be prevalent in the family. The campaign has now gone a step further with a new website, My Family Health Portrait, at http://familyhistory.hhs.gov/ , which allows you to record a tree using your family health information, in essence creating what is known as a 'genogram'.

Well worth a play with...

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Friday, 12 December 2008

Tracing Your Scottish Family History book

"Tracing Your Scottish Family History" is a new book by Anthony Adolph, from the publisher Collins, retailing at £17.99. In parts it is extremely good, in other parts not so, but it is certainly a worthwhile addition to the library of any Scottish genealogist.

Its major strength is that it is probably the first Scottish genealogy book I have ever come across that does not assume that all Scots lived in the central belt, carrying as it does some extremely useful information on research for those who once lived in the Highlands and Islands. On the down side, there are some seriously irritating conventions used, such as referring to every county as Co. Perth and Co. Lanark all the time, instead of Perthshire and Lanarkshire etc, and it also has its fair degree of tartan, kilts and celebrity name dropping sprinkled throughout. That aside, it is an attractive book and a good effort for those starting off on their Scottish ancestry.

(A much fuller review by yours truly is available in issue 77 of Ancestors magazine, out now).

Chris

Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

1911 Irish Census update draws ever nearer...

We're slowly getting there folks...!

The 1911 census site from the National Archives of Ireland is now showing search fields for counties Antrim, Down, Kerry and Dublin.

Unfortunately, it is not returning any results from any of these counties yet apart from Dublin...! But it looks like the release is indeed on track for December.





UPDATE (Fri 12th): I have now been able to look up some Kerry and Antrim returns on the site. It's hard work just now, the page has to be refreshed a few times for a search to go through without defaulting to Dublin entries, but the site is cleary having entries added to it, so the full upload does indeed seem imminent.

UPDATE: My great great granny was born in Gibraltar???!!! (Fun and games ahead on the research front, methinks...!)

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Famous Scots exhibition at ScotlandsPeople Centre

Following on from the full opening of the ScotlandsPeople Centre on January 12th, the Homecoming Scotland website has listed the dates of the Famous Scots exhibition at the centre, which will look at the family histories of six well known Scots, as commencing on Friday, January 23rd 2009, and running until Monday, November 30th 2009.

Further information will be made available in due course at the centre's website, at www.scotlandspeoplehub.gov.uk .

Chris

Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Who Do You Think You Are LIVE 2009 - 2 for 1 ticket offer

For anyone interested in going down south for the Who Do You Think You Are LIVE 2009 show at the end of February, Your Family Tree magazine currently has an offer whereby you can purchase two tickets for £20, instead of £20 each. A real bargain, and worth every penny if it is anything like last year's show (see http://scottishancestry.blogspot.com/2008/05/who-do-you-think-you-are-live-report.html)!

For more detais on the offer, visit www.yourfamilytreemag.co.uk/page/yft .

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

John Grenham and Cyndi Howell interviews

Roots Television is currently showing interviews with two giants of the genealogy world, John Grenham and Cyndi Howell.

John Grenham is an Irish genealogist, whose book Tracing Your Irish Ancestors is one of the key texts for those wishing to get a good grounding in the subject. In his interview, he comes across not only as throughouly knowledgeable in the subject, but also as what can only be described in Irish as 'dead on', a real gent. It was good to see he has shared the same exasperation as others with Ireland's long journey towards joining the rest of the genealogical community in the 21st Century, which is thankfully happening at long last, in no small part due to his own efforts in democratising the hobby in Ireland over the last few years. John's interview, about a quarter of an hour in length, is available at the following link: John Grenham .

Cyndi Howell is responsible for the Cyndi's List website, the definitive genealogical online directory, and is the kind of person you would so desperately want to have in your family history society. In her interview she gives an overview of the history of the site (www.cyndislist.com) and how it can help you. She also makes it crystal clear that she will absolutely not do your research for you! Cyndi's interview is available at Cyndi Howell .

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Monday, 8 December 2008

Family History Monthly issue 165 now on sale

The latest issue of Family History Monthly (Jan 2009, isue 165) is now on sale with the usual top notch features inside. As well as articles on gun makers, English civil war records, 'memento mori' and a research guide to County Tyrone, there is also a competition in which Scotland's Greatest Story is giving away a free day's research as a prize at the ScotlandsPeople Centre and/or the National Archives of Scotland. That's seven hours work, and all you have to do is answer a simple Scottish history based question to be in with a chance!

Good luck...!

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Irish merchant seamen database 1918-21

Here's one that slipped past the radar when it was launched, but it is a cracker. If you have merchant seamen from Ireland who worked between 1918 and 1921, pop along to David Snook's website at www.irishmariners.ie , which contains details of almost 22,800 Irish merchant seamen, as held at Southampton Civic Archives under accession number CR10.

Here' some background, as noted on David's site:

The British Board of Trade began a central index for merchant seamen in 1913. During the Great War, the seamen's union, under James Havelock Wilson, successfully resisted attempts to make them subject to naval discipline and liable for conscription. The origin of the identity card scheme is in the manpower crisis of 1918. The government wanted to check that men registered as merchant seamen went to sea, and were not using the system to avoid conscription. The original index cards are held in Southampton Civic Archives and cover a multinational workforce of 270,000 seamen. (CR10 series) All jobs and ranks are covered. Each card lists personal and foreign voyages detail for the seaman together with a photograph to match that on the seaman's identity card. The overall standard of the photographs is very good. The system operated from late 1918 until the end of 1921. It is surprising that it continued after the war because the clerical cost to operate it must have been considerable. It is also fortunate that Irish born seamen are included because they were not liable for conscription. The system was simplified with no photographs in 1922.

A wonderful website.

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Friday, 5 December 2008

Deceased Online record prices reduced for December

A few months ago I announced the launch of a new website called Deceased Online (www.deceasedonline.com), which is digitising the burial and cremation records of various local authorities in the UK and Ireland. At present, the records available are limited to Kent and Sussex crematorium records and Tunbridge Wells Borough Cemetery. The organisers of the site are reducing the access cost for these from £2.50 to £1 for December, and the minimum purchase price from £7.50 to £3 for 30 credits. Credits life has also been extended to 120 days.

From a Scottish point of view, obviously if you have relatives in either the Kent, Sussex or Tunbridge Wells areas, the site is currently worth a visit, but do keep an eye on the site as it develops - the organiser has informed me that records from authorities in Scotland and the Republic of Ireland are currently being digitised and will be released over the next few months, in addition to many from participating authorities in the rest of Britain, including from local authorities in London.

The Deceased Online team will also be present at the Who Do You Think You Are LIVE show at the end of February in London.

Chris
www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Heraldic artists

I've just come across a post from a blogger called Kimon Andreou listing some of the best heraldic artists currently working outwith Scotland, in Europe and America, with accompanying links to their websites.

If you are curious to see who the rest of the world turns to with their heraldic needs, visit the post at http://www.idtg.org/?p=129 !

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Your Family Tree 72 on sale

Issue 72 (Jan 2009) of Your Family Tree magazine is now on sale, and as usual is packed with goodies. There's an update on the forthcoming English and Welsh 1911 Census release, articles on immigrant ancestors, journalists, sub-editors and typesetters, equity court records, the impact of radio, Family Tree Maker 2009, and a getting started with wills article from yours truly. The free cover mounted CD contains an 1884 Dublin directory, and school registers for students at Harrow from 1801-93.

All for £4.99 at your local newsagent's!

(NB: For overseas readers, YFT is known as Your Family History, for copyright reasons).

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Scottish Way of Birth and Death - University of Glasgow project

A fabulous website is up and running from the University of Glasgow's Centre for the History of Medicine, entitled The Scottish Way of Birth and Death. Sponsored by the Wellcome Trust, the site gves a remarkable overview of the role of the General Register Office for Scotland, and its work from 1855 to 1939 in the civil registration of the country's vital events (births, marriages, deaths etc). I have read a few histories on the subject, but I don't think there has ever been anything as concise (with the exception perhaps of the book "Jock Tamson's Bairns" by Cecil Sinclair).

The project is available at www.gla.ac.uk/departments/scottishwayofbirthanddeath .

(A huge thanks to Alison Spring at the LDS Family History centre in Glasgow)

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

University of Strathclyde genealogy festival in 2009

The International Genealogy Festival at the University of Strathclyde will be running in Glasgow between Tuesday 21st July 2009 and Friday 24th July 2009, as one of the many Homecoming Scotland events throughout the country next year. Further details, including a downloadable PDF leaflet outlining the general programme, can be found at www.strathclydegenealogy.co.uk .

Chris
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving


Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Entry changes for National Archives of Scotland

The National Archives of Scotland has announced that from January 5th 2009 they will require readers to bring with them two colour passport-style photographs. One will be added to your reader’s ticket, as a means of identifying you when you enter the building, and to ensure that tickets are not transferred between readers. The other will be retained on file by the NAS along with a note of the contact details you supply when you obtain a reader’s ticket.

The NAS advises readers to obtain such photographs in advance of a visit to prevent delays in issuing new reader’s ticket. Photo booths are available in the St James Centre, Waverley Station and the Bus Station.

(With thanks to Falkyrn at Rootschat)

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Royal Assent for Scottish Register of Tartans Act 2008

Royal Assent was given to the Scottish Register of Tartans Act 2008 on November 13th.
As part of the act, the Keeper of the Records of Scotland (the head of the National Archives of Scotland, currently George MacKenzie) will be known as the Keeper of the Scottish Register of Tartans in matters to do with the register, which has yet to be drawn up. Once constructed, the register is also to be made available on a website or by some other electronic means to the public.

The full wording of the act is available at http://www.opsi.gov.uk/legislation/scotland/acts2008/pdf/asp_20080007_en.pdf .

(With thanks to Antiony Maxwell's Scots Heraldry blog)

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Monday, 1 December 2008

Closure at the National Archives in Kew for annual stocktaking

If you are planning on an imminent trip to the National Archives at Kew, you may wish to take heed of the following announcement rom the body:

The National Archives will be closed to the public on Friday 5, Saturday 6 and Monday 8 December 2008 for annual stocktaking. We will reopen at 09:00 on Tuesday 9 December. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Our online services will not be affected.


Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Sunday, 30 November 2008

St Andrew's Day - Latha Naoimh Anndra

For a man who never set foot in Scotland, St. Andrew (Naomh Anndra) has been the main man in these parts since the 10th Century AD. But he's not just the patron saint of Scotland - Greece, Russia, and Romania have also staked their claim on him. So who was he, and why has he become an honorary Scot? All is revealed at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Andrew#Scotland .

Have a great St. Andrew's Day, and let's get that saltire flying loud and proud...!

Chris

Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Saturday, 29 November 2008

Time to come home - Homecoming Scotland advert launched

2009 is the year of Homecoming Scotland, an opportunity for the Scottish diaspora to return to the country of its ancestors, and to a very warm welcome. There's events galore across the nation throughout the year, and to kick it all off, a new television advert has been launched to encourage Scots to promote the year long party to their kith and kin across the world.

To see the advert, set to a rousing rendition of Dougie McLean's song 'Caledonia', visit the Homecoming page at http://www.homecomingscotland2009.com/news/caledonia.html .

Chì sinn gu luath sibh – we’ll see ye soon!

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Scottish Lectures and Events for December

Exhibition – Zig Zag: the Paths of Robert Burns
7 NOV 2008 – 1 FEB 2009 at George IV Bridge Building.
Opening times:Monday to Friday: 10.00-20.00Saturday: 10.00-17.00Sunday: 14.00-17.00Early closing on 1, 24 and 31 December: 17.00Early closing on 4 December: 18.00Admission free. No need to book.
[w] www.nls.uk/events/burns-exhibition/index.html


Marine Section Members' Nite
Largs and District Historical Society
Mon 1 DEC 2008, at 7.30pm, Largs Museum, Kirkgate House, Manse Court, Largs
[w] http://freespace.virgin.net/mike.mackenzie2/LDHSprog.htm


Christmas Get-together
Lochaber and North Argyll FHS
Tues 2 DEC 2008, at 7.30pm, Fort William Library, Fortwilliam
Doing what we do best - Eating and Talking and, maybe, a little QuizPlease bring something to eat and drink to share
[w] www.lochaberandnorthargyllfamilyhistorygroup.org.uk


8th Anniversary Get-together
West Lothian FHS
2 DEC 2008, at 7.00 – 9.00pm, Connolly House, Blackburn
[w] www.wlfhs.org.uk


Social Evening
Central Scotland FHS
3 DEC 2008 7:30pm, at the Smith Museum and Art Gallery, Dumbarton Road, Stirling
[w] www.csfhs.org.uk


Members Evening with guest Tony Clarke, AV Show - QE2
Renfrewshire FHS
Thur 4 DEC 2008, at 7.30pm, Paisley Museum
[w] www.renfrewshirefhs.co.uk


Roadshow
West Lothian FHS
6 DEC 2008, Linlithgow Library
[w] www.wlfhs.org.uk


Christmas Social
Aberdeen and North East Scotland FHS
Sat 6 DEC 2008, at 2.30pm, Aberdeen Unitarian Church, 43a Skene Street, Aberdeen
Tel: 01224 646323 Fax: 01224 639096
[w] http://anesfhs.org.uk


Recording Scotland’s Places, Past, Present and Future: a lecture to celebrate the Centenary of RCAHMS, by Diana Murray
Marischal Museum
8 DEC 2008, Marischal College, University of Aberdeen. Free entry.
[t] 01224 274301
[w] www.abdn.ac.uk/marischal_museum/lectures.shtml


Members’ Evening, and short presentations by Gordon Barr, John Dye & Sandra Evans
Moidart Local History Group / Comann Eachdraidh MùideartMon 8 DEC 2008, at 8.00pm, Glenuig Hall
[w] www.moidart.org.uk


Social and Heirlooms Evening
Glasgow & West of Scotland FHS
Mon 8 DEC 2008, at 7.30pmm St. Peter’s Hall, Chancellor Street, Partick
[w] www.gwsfhs.org.uk


Social Evening
Largs and North Ayrshire FHS
9 DEC 2008 at 7.30pm, Community Room, Largs Library, Allanpark Street, Largs
[w] www.largsnafhs.org.uk


Committee Meeting
West Lothian Family History Society
9 DEC 2008, at 7.00 – 9.00pm, Community Centre, Blackburn
[w] www.wlfhs.org.uk


Members Evening with guest Tony Clarke, AV Show - QE2
Renfrewshire FHS
Tues 9 DEC 2008, at 7.30pm, Waterfront Leisure Complex, Conference Suite in Greenock
[w] www.renfrewshirefhs.co.uk


Party Night
Caithness FHS
10 DEC 2008, at Thurso Town Hall
[w] www.caithnessfhs.org.uk


Christmas Party
The Lothians FHS
10 NOV 2008 at 7.00 – 9.00 pm, Lasswade High School Centre, Eskdale Drive, Bonnyrigg
[w] www.lothiansfhs.org.uk


Graveyards, by John Young
Lanarkshire FHS
Thur 11 DEC 2008, at 7.00 – 9.00pm, at GLO Centre, Muir Street, Motherwell
[w] www.lanarkshirefhs.org.uk


Christmas Party Night
East Ayrshire FHS
11 DEC 2008 7.30pm Gateway Centre, Foregate Square, Kilmarnock at
[w] www.eastayrshirefhs.org.uk


Quiz and Christmas Party
Troon @ Ayrshire FHS
16 DEC 2008, venue unknown
[w] www.troonayrshirefhs.org.uk


Evening visit to New Register House
West Lothian FHS
16 DEC 2008, New Register House, West Register Street, Edinburgh
[w] www.wlfhs.org.uk


Social Evening
Alloway & Southern Ayrshire FHS
Thurs 18 DEC 2008
[w] www.asafhs.co.uk


Christmas Lunch
North Perthshire FHS
18 DEC 2008, at Westlands
[w] www.npfhg.org


Christmas Evening with refreshments
Appin Historical Society
20 DEC 2008, at 7.30pm, Port Appin Hall, Appin
Members' contributions on Christmases Past
[w] www.appinhistoricalsociety.co.uk


St. Columba's Church, Aignish, by John Cunningham
Stornoway Historical Society
29 DEC 2008, at 8.00pm (doors open from 7.30pm), Stornoway Town Hall. Entry is free but donations are welcome.
[w]
www.stornowayhistoricalsociety.org.uk


Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

ScotFamTree forum St Andrews Day get together...

The ScotFamTree genealogical forum is planning a virtual hooley tomorrow, hoping to set a site record for those online at one time as part of the St. Andrews Day celebrations. It is hoped that as many members are signed in as possible at 1.00pm GMT tomorrow, so if you are a member, do try to join in the fun - and if not, there's no better time to get started!

ScotFamTree is a discussion forum, online shop, and much more, with expertise from across the country and beyond its shores on all things Scottish. It can be accessed at http://scotfamtree.11.forumer.com/ via various tiers, starting with a basic free membership, and then more advaned tiers available by subscription.

Slàinte mhath!

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

January opening for ScotlandsPeople Centre

How's this for a great announcement just in time for St. Andrews Day?!!

It's been a long and worthwhile wait, but the ScotlandsPeople Centre officially opens its doors to the public on the 12th of January 2009. As well as the Adam Dome, the Reid Room and Matheson Dome will also be opening, and visitors will be able to pre-book seats in these areas from 15th of December 2008. Full details of how this can be done will be forthcoming in the near future on the main ScotlandsPeople Centre website at http://www.scotlandspeoplehub.gov.uk/ .

The ScotlandsPeople Café will also be open for business on the 13th of January 2009 serving a range of hot and cold snacks and drinks.

Please note that the free taster sessions and shop area will be closed from 12:00 on the 24th of December 2008 and re-open at 09:30 on 5th of January 2009.

A huge congratulations to Dee Williams and her team! An article describing what to expect from the new centre by a very impressed yours truly is available in this month's Family History Monthly magazine, including a description of what to expect from the new computer system which will be replacing the current DIGROS computer set up.



Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Scotsman online archive offer for December

The archive for the Scotsman newspaper is being made available online until December 30th 2008 for half the normal price. As an example, a 24 hour pass, normally £7.95, is currently available for just £3.98. For regular users, a year long pass, normally £159.95, is now available for just £79.98.

For more information, visit http://archive.scotsman.com/pricing.cfm .

(Thanks to Currie at TS)

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Ancestry launches partial Medical Registers collection online

Ancestry has launched a new UK Medical Registers Collection on its website at www.ancestry.co.uk .

The General Medical Council was set up in 1858 to ensure health and safety practices, regulate the medical industry and maintain an official record of all approved physicians. Its Medical Registers from 1858-1950 contain details of every doctor approved during this period – more than 1.5 million names in all – including their name, address of practice, university of qualification and date of registration, providing a vital historical reference point for those researching British medical history or their own family history. It should be noted that Ancestry's collection is not complete, with registers appearing at four year intervals.

Prior to regulation, the reputation of British medicine had been blighted by ‘quackery’ - the malpractice of unqualified doctors and fraudsters. Medical ‘charlatans’ administered unproven, usually ineffective and sometimes dangerous medicines and treatments for personal financial gain, leaving the reputation of legitimate doctors in tatters. By vetting and making registration a professional requirement for all practising British doctors, these issues were resolved, and by legitimising it public confidence in the medical profession was restored. Consequently, the number of qualified doctors increased from 15,000 in 1859 to 35,000 in 1900. By 1950 there were over 150,000 registered GPs, physicians and surgeons.

* If you are interested in researching the medical history of your family or the history of those who worked within the medical professions, check out my 5 page cover feature article in this month's Family History Monthly (issue 164, December), where you will find out how to research physicians, apothecaries, nurses, St John Ambulance and St Andrew's Ambulance, how to find hospital records for patients, and much more!

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Friday, 28 November 2008

Family tree chart service

You have all your research and would now like to put it onto a large chart to display in your house, or to have one compiled as a present for a friend this Christmas. The problem is that a lot of charts that can be bought look absolutely horrendous and completely impersonal. So why not get one designed to suit your needs?

Christine Anne Welch is a professional graphic designer based in Birmingham who now specialises in custom designed trees through her service, Golden Memories. You can have your tree designed any way that you like, you can include any photos that might be relevant, and as the customer you will be consulted all the way in the design process. Christine did my tree about a year ago, and copies of it now hang on the wall in my own house and in my father's house in Crete (see pic, prior to it being hung up on the wall there!), providing a focal point for many conversations when visitors arrive!

To find out more, visit Christine's website at http://goldenmemoriescharts.co.uk .


Chris

Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Thursday, 27 November 2008

New Irish research projects from Trinity College Dublin

Two new projects of interest from Trinity College Dublin...

1641 Depositions Project

This project aims to transcribe and digitise the 1641 Depositions, a unique manuscript collection, held in the Library of Trinity College Dublin. The collection comprises 3,400 depositions, examinations and associated materials (approximately 19,000 pages) in which Protestant men and women of all classes tell of their experiences following the outbreak of the rebellion by the Catholic Irish in October 1641. The project will be done in collaboration with IBM.

For more info see http://www.tcd.ie/longroomhub/projects/ireland/


Irish Military database

A useful source for those with Irish ancestors who served in the French armies in the 17th and 18th centuries is now online at http://www.irishineurope.ie/RIA-launch.html

(With thanks to Bruce Durie at the University of Strathclyde)


Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Winter programme for PHAROS family history courses

Military historian Simon Fowler joins Pharos’ roster of family history experts to lead a Pharos online course on researching military ancestors. Starting on 20 January 2009, the five-week course will look at the major resources available online and in record offices, such as The National Archives and the Imperial War Museum. Simon has published many guides to researching military history, particularly on Army genealogy and the First World War, for The National Archives, Pen & Sword and Countryside Books, and is also the editor of Ancestors magazine from TNA.

Other Courses from PHAROS this coming Winter and Spring 2009:


19 January – Become a Better Genealogist
20 January – Military Men and Women: Records of Britain’s Armed Forces 1750 – 1920
2 February – The National Archives Catalogue – Finding People
10 March – Scottish Research Online
20 March - Writing Your Family History
16 March – Searching for Wills and Administrations in England & Wales
23 April – Caribbean Family History
5 May – Scotland 1750 – 1850: Beyond the OPRs


More information is available at www.pharostutors.com .

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Scottish Pantomimes exhibition begins tour

A new University of Glasgow exhibition on the history of Scottish Pantomime has begun a tour in Edinburgh. Oh not it hasn't... Oh yes it has! (sorry!) The exhibition uses images and other memorabilia from the Glasgow University library Scottish Theatre Archive.

For more information, see http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/scotland_politics/7750809.stm .

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Happy Thanksgiving to all American family history buffs!

Living here on an island where it sometimes seems as if people have forgotten how to say thank you, it's nice to know that you guys over the pond still have a day just to say that! Have a good one!

Today has also been declared by acting Surgeon General Steve Galston to be National Family History Day in the US - he suggests you take the opportunity when with your family to discover the history of your family's health problems down the years. A good idea, but don't forget to ask them about other aspects of their lives, or else it could all get a bit grim!!!


Chris

Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

BBC News items on Ruhleben POW camp

I was on BBC Radio Scotland's Good Morning Scotland programme this morning with journalist David Miller discussing my project on the First World War prisoner of war camp at Ruhleben, on the outskirts of Berlin, within which some 5500 British civilians were interned for the duration of hostilities. The item was transmitted live in the last five minutes of the programme, and can be heard again for the next seven days on the BBC's online iPlayer at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00fn9k1 .

We also recorded a separate television piece on the story, which will include Scottish Screen footage of some of the prisoners returning to Leith, the 90th anniversary of their return being tomorrow. This is due to be shown on BBC1 Scotland's Reporting Scotland this evening between 6.30 and 7.00pm - do try to catch it if you can!

And if you had relatives at Ruhleben, I would love to hear from you in order to include their story on my commemorative website, The Ruhleben Story, at http://ruhleben.tripod.com . So far the site contains free to access information and images concerning over 1800 of the POWs, so still a fair few to identify! Amongst the internees was my own great uncle John Brownlie Paton - his story at Ruhleben is explored in further detail at http://chrispatonscotland.tripod.com/id63.html .

UPDATE: The Rep Scot story is now online at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/7752999.stm , and a written BBC news article can be found at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/edinburgh_and_east/7753237.stm .


Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

SAFHS website revamped

The website for the Scottish Association of Family History Societies has just undergone a very welcome facelift. Apart from the fact that the previously dreadful synthesised bagpipe music no longer hits you when you visit the page, it is now looks considerably brighter and has new added features, such as a surname search facilty which allows you to look for surnames across the websites of the organisations constituent members. Well worth a look at www.safhs.org.uk .

And as it's my blog, I'm also going to throw in a quick plug for my local FHS...! Largs and North Ayrshire FHS is a small but enthusiastic society that meets once a month at Largs Library on Allanpark Street, and is only too happy to welcome new members and to offer advice. Its website is located at www.largsnafhs.org.uk .

Chris

www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk
Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving