Thursday, 30 June 2011
Today 40 million people in the US alone proudly acknowledge their Irish heritage.
Now you have the opportunity to access a huge database of emigrants who sailed from Ireland in the nineteenth century. This database has been compiled in collaboration with the Balch Institute Philadelphia, and the Ellis Island Restoration Commission, and the Battery Conservancy, New York from the original passenger lists of ships, which sailed from Ireland and the UK.
The database is directly accessible at www.dunbrody.com/database2.php
(With thanks to Irish Roots Magazine on Twitter @IrishRootsMag)
Wednesday, 29 June 2011
Tuesday, 28 June 2011
In Edinburgh, the National Records of Scotland (www.nrscotland.gov.uk) will offer a partial service only. There will be access to self-service microfilm and digital images in the Historical and Legal Search Rooms, to catalogues and open-shelf library books, and adoption appointments will be upheld. However, there will be no document productions, copy orders or supervised locker facilities. For more information, call 0131 535 1365.
The ScotlandsPeople Centre (www.scotlandspeoplehub.gov.uk) is also likely to be hit, but its site merely states for the moment that "Visitors are advised that due to industrial action we may not be able to provide a full service next Thursday, 30th June."
In England, the National Archives at Kew (www.nationalarchives.gov.uk) will be closed altogether.
For other archives, do check in advance before you make a trip that may turn out to be in vain!
Admission Price: £3.00 Accompanied Children under 15 Free
Exhibitors for 2011 include:
Ancestry.co.uk, Anguline Research Archives, Bennor Books, Brian Elliott Books, British Association for Local History, CAB Search, Census Detectives, Chris E Makepeace Maps, Durham County Record Office, Family & Local History Handbook, Families on Film, Gareth Burgess Postcards, Guild of One Name Studies, Herbert Chapman, JiGrah Resources, My History, My Heritage, North of Ireland Family History Society, Northumberland & Durham FHS, Northumberland Archives, Pen & Sword Books, Picture The Past - George Nairn Postcards, Relatively Helpful, Scottish Association of Family History Societies, S & N Genealogy, Society of Genealogists, The Genealogist, The National Archives, Ulster Historical Foundation, UKBMD, Your Family History Magazine, Yorkshire Group of Family History Societies, Yorkshire Ancestors, Family History Societies, Books, Postcards, Maps and much more . . .
A series of talks and demonstrations will take place during the day.
Genealogy Advice will be provided by genealogist and lecturer Doreen Hopwood
Talks and Presentations will take place from 12.15.p.m. by:
Dr Nick Barratt - the historian and broadcaster.
He was the lead researcher and consultant for Who Do You Think You Are when first launched on BBC television His presenter roles include So You Think You're Royal; History Mysteries; Hidden House History; Secrets from the Attic and Live the Dream. He is also the on air expert for BBC Radio 4's Tracing Your Roots. He is the author of Who Do You Think You Are Encyclopaedia of Family History; Guide to Your Ancestors' Lives; Lost Voices of the Titanic. He is the Editor in Chief of Your Family History magazine; Executive Director of FreeBMD; the Research Director for Sticks Research Agency; President of The Federation of Family History Societies
Researching Irish Family History - Dr William Roulston - Research Director for The Ulster Historical Foundation He is the author of a number of publications including Researching Scots-Irish Ancestors: the essential genealogical guide to early modern Ulster, 1600-1800 (2005). He holds a PhD in Archaeology from Queen’s University, Belfast, and has worked on several radio and television projects including research for Who Do You Think You Are?
Places are Limited. Tickets will cost £3.00 and will be available at the Fair.
In the heart of the City Centre the Newcastle Central Premier Inn is a short walk from Newcastle Railway Station, Monument Metro Station and City Centre Bus Routes. Easily access from A1 and A167M. Car Parking (On Street and Multi-Storey) nearby. Refreshments Available All Day.
The Hotel has 186 en-suite bedrooms and a restaurant. The hotel makes an ideal base from which to explore the local surrounds. Just a short walk from the historic Quayside, as well as great shopping, galleries, museums and theatres. Bookings can be made via www.premierinn.com
(With thanks to Bob Blatchford)
FIND YOUR REBEL ANCESTORS ON FINDMYPAST.IE
· Launch of most important record of most significant period of Irish history
· Sinn Féin Rebellion Handbook features names of over 6,700 rebels, soldiers, casualties and government personnel
· Lists over 2000 British servicemen
Today sees the launch of one of the most comprehensive records of the 1916 Easter Rising released in a fully searchable structured index for the first time. The Sinn Féin Rebellion Handbook was published by the Irish Times in 1917 and provides a fascinating insight into one of the most important periods of Irish History. It is now live and ready to explore on findmypast.ie.
The 1916 Easter Rising, the most significant revolt since the 1798 Rebellion, began on Easter Monday April 24th 1916. It was mainly a Dublin-based rebellion of Irish nationalists against British Rule in Ireland and was born from the British Government’s delays in the enactment of the Home Rule Bill, following the outbreak of World War I.
The 308 page handbook now available on findmypast.ie is made up of Irish Times articles relevant to the Rising as well as official lists, featuring the names of over 6,700 rebels, soldiers, prisoners, casualties and government personnel, including photographs and maps, creating the most detailed observation of the events of the 1916 Rising. It is an essential resource for those studying the people and events of the Rising, in particular those whose relatives fought or were injured.
The handbook is also a great resource for those with British military ancestors. Over 2000 servicemen are listed in sections detailing: honours and awards to military and police, high ranking officer’s in a Who’s Who of the handbook, Red Cross workers and members of the Officers’ Training Corps, who are credited with gallantly defending many of the city’s most historic buildings including Trinity College and the Bank of Ireland, College Green.
Cliona Weldon, General Manager at findmypast.ie, said: “The Sinn Féin Rebellion Handbook is one of the most important documents of the time. Having such a momentous piece of Irish history available to our customers embodies our commitment to publishing family history records that are more than simply names and dates.”
Monday, 27 June 2011
Sunday, 26 June 2011
Friday, 24 June 2011
Seafield Cemetery, Seafield Place, Edinburgh, EH6 7QP
38,629 burials, dated 10 January 1888 to 2011, are available as Mortality register scans in various formats at between 34 and 40 entries per scanned page. These records also include the type of hearse used at the funeral.
Seafield Crematorium, Seafield Place, Edinbugh, EH6 7QP
49,502 Cremations, dated 3 May 1939 to 6 June 2009, are available as Cremation register scans at 7 entries per page.
Warriston Crematorium, 36 Warriston Road, Edinbugh, EH7 4HW
224,620 Cremations, dated 1 October 1929 to 13 June 2009, are available as Cremation register scans at 6 to 9 entries per page.
Records up to 1991 are available - records after this date are still being uploaded but will be available shortly.
For the purposes of the UK Data Protection Act, the names and addresses of funeral applicants and grave (lair) owners for burials during the last 75 years have been withheld from publication.
Edinburgh Crematorium Ltd have also requested that the addresses of the deceased and places of death not be shown in cremation register records for the last 15 years.
Thursday, 23 June 2011
Edinburgh: 300,000+ burial and cremation records added to Deceased Online
Nearly 1 million Scottish burial and cremation records now available
• 313,000 records for Edinburgh’s Seafield Cemetery and Crematorium and for Warriston Crematorium are now on www.deceasedonline.com.
• Nearly 39,000 burial records dating from 1888 to the present day for Seafield Cemetery feature scans of mortality registers (with many of them including details of the type of hearse used!).
• Over 49,500 records from 1939 for Seafield Crematorium are available as scans of cremation register pages.
• Records for Warriston Crematorium, numbering nearly 225,000 and dating back to 1929, are available as scans of cremation registers. Please note: records up to 1991 are immediately available – records after this date are still being uploaded but will be available shortly.
• The combined Edinburgh dataset of 313,000 means that the total Deceased Online database for Scotland now numbers just under 1 million burial and cremation records.
The Deceased Online team will be in Edinburgh on Saturday 25th June meeting delegates at the Scottish Association of Family Histories (SAFHS) national conference. They will be demonstrating the wide range of records that Deceased Online has for areas throughout Scotland including register scans, grave details, photographs of memorials with searchable inscriptions, and cemetery maps. Conference details are at: www.safhs.org.uk/conference.asp
NB: These records will go live in the early evening of Friday June 24th.
(With thanks as ever to Richard Gray at Deceased Online)
The Office for National Statistics reaffirmed today that personal census information is secure and an allegation made Tuesday 21 June, that it has been hacked is without foundation. Census Director, Glen Watson, said:
“I can reassure the public that their census records are secure. We have strict measures in place protecting the nation’s census information. The claim that hackers got in looks like a hoax and our investigation concluded that there is no sign of any suspicious activity. The alleged hackers have also denied any involvement.
“However, we are not complacent and will remain vigilant. The security and confidentiality of census data remain our top priority."
Meanwhile, the Scotland's Census team are looking for feedback on how the actual census campaign was run - to fill out the online survey visit www.surveymonkey.com/s/scotlandscensus - you have until July 1st to do so.
GENES REUNITED LAUNCH A NEW TAILORED SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE
Family history enthusiasts no longer have to pay for record sets they don’t use
Genes Reunited, one of the UK’s leading genealogy websites, today launches a set of new payment options that will enable users to tailor their subscription to the record sets they wish to use.
The choice of additional features will mean that members no longer have to pay one lump sum for access to records they have no use for; instead members will now be able to create their own package by adding the record sets they want to use.*
Initially the additional records package will include a collection of migration records, including passenger lists, passport applications and Indian records, with further record sets being added over the coming months.
Genes Reunited provides easy, online access to over 750 million records dating as far back as 1761. This allows family historians and novice genealogists to search for their ancestors among comprehensive collections of military records, census records, migration data, as well as the original comprehensive birth, marriage and death records.
Rhoda Breakell, Head of Genesreunited.co.uk, says: “The new additional features system will enable members to have more flexibility when researching their family history, without being charged for records that are not relevant to them. Our new packages will make things even easier for family history enthusiasts and at a lower cost to our users.”
* The initial ‘Travel and Overseas’ additional feature package will be priced at £14.95 for 12 months and is available to those who upgrade to the platinum package. Platinum membership currently costs £6.67 per month on a 12-month subscription.
Wednesday, 22 June 2011
The book is €13 Retail from Ireland and $22 (inc Post/Packing) to US.
"I was given the list 10 years ago by Donald Fraser who is now 97, and is/was the local historian. It was clearly an old list even in 1990, pages are yellowed. I'd lost it in my office papers and it surfaced on the weekend. Too valuable not to be shared."
Only a handful of the names are derived from Gaelic e.g. 'Mary Vech' for Mary MacDonald, which comes from Mary Bheag, Little Mary. Most are English names - eg. John MacDonald known as The Feathery Taylor. All of the aliases can be accessed at www.bytown.net/scottishnicknamesinglengarry.htm.
(With thanks to Dianne, @scotsinamerica)
FamilySearch’s Todd Knowles Recognized for Contributions to Jewish Genealogy
Todd Knowles, a FamilySearch British reference consultant and Jewish genealogy specialist who works in the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, was recently added to the Jewish Genealogical Society of Great Britain’s Roll of Honour at their annual meeting in London. Knowles was recognized for his distinguished service in the development and publication of resources relating to the Jews of the British Isles. His free online database (search the Knowles Collection) contains linked and sourced entries for more than 100,000 Jews from the British Isles and over 100,000 Jews from other parts of the world. The online collection provides invaluable information for those researching their Jewish ancestors.
Knowles received the award from Mark Nicholls, chairman of the society. Knowles is the 15th recipient of the distinguished award in the 20-year history of the society. His name will be listed in the West London Synagogue on a wall plaque with previous recipients.
Knowles was surprised by the award and deeply honored. “To be recognized by the people I love so much and respect is overwhelming. The [Knowles] collection started out as my way to get in touch with my ancestry—to learn more about who I am. I continue to be amazed at how it is quickly growing into a large collection representing Jewish communities worldwide,” commented Knowles.
What are the Militia Attestation Papers?
These records are brought to you online in association with The National Archives (TNA). The TNA record series number is ‘WO96’: WO simply indicates that the records were created by the War Office, the precursor of today’s Ministry of Defence.
The Militia was a voluntary county-based part-time force for home defence. It ceased to be summoned after the Civil War but was revived in 1757, when the Militia Act established militia regiments in all counties of England and Wales.
Why are these records useful to the family historian?
These records provide rich detail and colour to your ancestors’ lives at a level that is difficult to find elsewhere. Many of your ancestors will have served in the militia, often as a precursor to serving in the British Army so these records will provide a useful addition to our British Army Service Records.
Whereas many other military records provide information about officer class soldiers, these records include papers from ordinary soldiers of other ranks. This makes it more likely that you will be able to find details about your ancestors. If searching the censuses leads to a dead end, it is possible you can find who you are looking for here. Men often attested into one corps and out of another.
What exactly will I be able to find out?
The Militia Attestation Papers provide a record of service as they were annotated until the date of discharge. They also have information about birth date and place.
What else is special about the Militia Attestation Papers?
They contain details which are largely unavailable elsewhere. These records are useful in finding out information about ancestors from England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and overseas.
This is the first time these records have been scanned, transcribed and published online.
Tuesday, 21 June 2011
Edinburgh drop-in surgery
Holy Cross Church Quality Street, Davidson’s Mains, Edinburgh, Scotland
FIBIS trustee, Elaine MacGregor, will be giving a general talk and presentation on researching British India family history and afterwards she and other experienced FIBIS members will be holding a FREE drop-in ‘surgery’ to offer advice to anyone wishing for help in furthering their British India family history research.
For directions visit www.holycrossedinburgh.org/?page_id=328
Start Time: 14:30
Date: 26 JUN 2011
All are welcome at the talk! (FIBIS will also be at the SAFHS conference)
(With thanks to FIBIS)
Monday, 20 June 2011
I've not heard anything lately about the next Homecoming Scotland event which had also been proposed for 2014 - if anyone knows if this is still on the cards, do please drop me a note!
(With thanks to @ScottishHistory via Twitter)
Also coming soon through Ancestry's WAP, having been completed and now 'in processing', are British Postal Service Appointment Books (http://www.ancestry.co.uk/wiki/index.php?title=World_Archives_Project:_British_Postal_Service_Appointment_Books) and England, Register of Duties Paid for Apprentices Indentures 1710-1810 http://www.ancestry.co.uk/wiki/index.php?title=World_Archives_Project:_England%2c_Register_of_Duties_Paid_for_Apprentices%27_Indentures%2c_1710-1811 - no idea if the latter includes Scotland, and just badly named, or if they've literally confined it to England; if the latter, I think that would be a little odd, as the indexes are mixed for both countries and already available on FindmyPast up to 1774 (sourced from the SoG in London). Will just have to wait and see!
Toronto Branch of the OGS is bringing Audrey Collins to speak to them on Monday 19 September 2011. Here's the blurb:
The Toronto Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society is pleased to announce a special evening for family historians with British ancestors. Audrey Collins, Family History Specialist at The National Archives, UK, will be presenting a two-part lecture entitled “What’s On at TNA”, commencing at 7:30 p.m. This lecture will be held at the Burgundy Room, North York Memorial Community Hall, 5110 Yonge Street, Toronto, at the North York Centre subway station. Discounts are available for OGS members. For details on cost and how to register for this event, visit www.torontofamilyhistory.org/TNA2011Lecture.html.
Audrey is a great speaker, I introduced her talk last year at the National Family History Fair, and then enjoyed an hour of some top info about the UK's largest archive - well worth going along. Oh, and did I mention she's a Glaswegian..?! To get a taste, here's an interview I recorded with her at WDYTYA this year in London:
Also from Canada, John Reid from Anglo-Celtic Connections has announced a new blog from BIFHSGO, now available at www.bifhsgo.ca/blog, and an interview he has recorded with Helen Osborn from Pharos Teaching and Tutoring Ltd. Well worth listening, and don't forget to check out the Pharos site for family history courses on all sorts, including two on Scottish resources, at www.pharostutors.com.
(With thanks to Gwyneth Pearce)
For more on the story visit http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-13836332
Sunday, 19 June 2011
It reminded me of when I lived in Bristol - as a student I worked in an ASDA store, and whilst serving on a deli counter one day a gent approached to buy some cheese. Noting he had an Ulster accent, I asked where he was from, and it was Belfast. I mentioned being from nearby, and he mentioned he had often gone to Carrick in years past on Sundays and had occasionally had lunch with a lady at a place called Robinson's Row. Yup, my gran! There's a saying about Ulster - everyone knows everyone through everyone else - and that clearly extends to Ulster folk in Toronto also!
The talks went well, and I was delighted with a comment yesterday from someone who also attended the Scots sessions, when she said she'd learned more on doing Irish genealogy in 2 hours than she had in the last 20 years. Och, one tries to help...! :)
Friday provided an opportunity to go up the CN Tower, seriously high, and now offering an option to go for walks outside at the very top with only a safety harness and a clip. Interesting option, but myself and Linda Reid opted instead for a lunch in the restaurant. I managed to see St Andrew's Presbyterian Church from on high, and learned about 'air rights' - buildings selling air space above them as a preservation technique. Skyscrapers everywhere, but a building with the air space above it sold off cannot be knocked down for a higher building to take its place, as the air rights have been sold to the skyscraper building next door. So they may as well keep the church! Brilliantly bonkers, and it works! :)
Yesterday then was the main event, with myself and the wonderful Marian Press and James Thomson talking about all things Caledonian throughout the day to an appreciative audience. I did a Taggart voice when I announced that "There's Been a Murrderrr..." - I think I got away with it! The society had ordered copies of my first two books, but they ended up stuck in customs - but no probs, if you couldn't get one, the society is taking orders, and apparently did well on the pre-sales front, so thanks to anyone who has already picked up copies - I hope they help! I unfortunately did not get to hear Marian's talks as they ran in parallel to mine, but I did catch James' second talk on 'Doing Scottish Genealogy from the GTA'. Some great resources here in Toronto. At one point James mentioned the General View of the Agriculture of... books from the 19th century, each on a different county. Many are on Google Books, and a must have read alongside the Statistical Accounts, but James mentioned there is also a complete run in Toronto - I believe at the University of Toronto Library, but best to check with the Toronto Branch of the OGS, just in case I'm telling porkies and it is somewhere else!
I also managed to catch up with an archivist (and reader of this blog!), who had asked me to go through a will with her mentioning a land arrangement concerning a feu and a trust being set up in Glasgow's Blythswood area, and working through it together we think we've established a possible date of death for one of her ancestors, so nice to get a bit of actual research in also!
After the event, some members of the Toronto Branch of the OGS met for a drink in the hotel I was staying at, including Marian and James, and Linda and Pierce Reid, and we had a good old chinwag on all things Scottish, from restoring castles, the use of tee names and issues surrounding adoption and identity. And some nice wine! I ended the evening with a great meal with Linda and Pierce, where I got a real insight into life in Canada, the various provinces and more.
A brilliant couple of days, but more to come - I'm heading out in a few hours to meet the Scottish Interest Group of the Toronto Branch of the OGS for a brunch, looking forward to it!!
(With thanks to Linda for the pics!)
Thursday, 16 June 2011
A TREASURE TROVE OF SHIP PASSENGER RECORDS GO ONLINE
* A two year old Elizabeth Taylor, and a 56 year old Alfred Hitchcock found in the records
* 24 million passengers who travelled on long-distance journeys from UK ports
* Records cover the period of mass migration to Australia between 1947-1960
From today people will be able to view passenger lists online at UK family history website, www.genesreunited.co.uk. The lists include people onboard ships departing British ports for long-distance voyages across the world from 1890 to 1960.
The passenger list records offer a range of information from simply the passenger's name and age, to much more detailed information; the departure and destination ports, the ship's name, date of travel as well as actual descriptions of the passengers themselves, such as, UK address, year of birth, marital status, occupation and nationality. Through these records it is possible to find some truly unique information about ancestors who voyaged overseas.
As well as the range of detail that can be found in these records, there are also some famous names which can be discovered, in particular Hollywood royalty such as a two year old Elizabeth Taylor, a 56 year old Alfred Hitchcock, a 22 year old Audrey Hepburn and finally a four year old Olivia Newton-John who was on her way from London to Australia.
Some shipping lines produced passenger lists in duplicate or even triplicate for the Board of Trade. This means that there can be two or even three originals of some of the passenger lists within the BT27 series. Such duplicates were written out again by hand (not produced using carbon paper). The differences between these different copies of the same list are usually cosmetic but there are sometimes also minor differences in content or in the Board of Trade's annotations or stamps upon them.
These duplicate lists have been scanned to preserve the integrity of the BT27 dataset. Researchers should note that this means that occasionally you may see two entries for the same individual which correspond to two different original copies of the same list.
A solution is being designed so that customers will only be charged once for the information contained within these duplicate pages.
The passenger records cover the period of mass migration to Australia between 1947 and 1960 when an estimated 710,000 people travelled there from Great Britain. This 'golden age' of migration to Australia was prompted by the launch of the Government's 'Ten Pound Pom' scheme to encourage Britons to emigrate to Australia and enhance the nation's skilled workforce driving its economy forwards.
Similarly to today, the records reveal a high number of retirees also travelled to Australia to spend the rest of their lives in the sun, with 17,385 retirees emigrating from the UK during the 1950s. Furthermore, 140,511 housewives travelled to Australia in the same decade. The records also show that there were 58 divorcees and 215 widowers listed who may have journeyed to the country to make a fresh start.
Rhoda Breakell, head of Genes Reunited, comments: "The wealth of passenger list records now available on Genes Reunited is an invaluable resource for people tracing relatives they believe may have left the UK from 1890 onwards. The passenger records may very well provide a missing link for many family historians who have hit a brick wall in their research, as well as helping those outside of the UK to trace back to their British and European heritage."
The easily-searchable and user-friendly database will enable would-be genealogists and family historians alike to view digitised images of the original ship passenger records online, which contain over 1.1 million pages, listing the 24 million passengers who travelled on long-distance journeys from UK ports.
Comment: The records have previously been available for some time on www.findmypast.co.uk and on a dedicated site, www.ancestorsonboard.com.
(With thanks to Natasha White at Genes Reunited)
Wednesday, 15 June 2011
Having checked in I then spent the afternoon doing what any self-respecting full blooded Ulsterman would do - I went for a dander (for the unwary, that basically means going for a walk and seeing what happens!). Within ten minutes I had stumbled across a graveyard - York Cemetery and Visitation Centre - so clearly the genealogical imperative kicked in and I had to take a peak. I came across a Sherman tank inside the grounds, acting as a war memorial, and several Scots graves - the following had this inscription, which I thought was a tad sweet:
Till the seas gang dry my dear,
And the rock melts wi' th sun,
Oh, I will love thee still my dear,
While the sands o' life shall run
This was found on a plaque commemorating an Edinburgh man born in 1890 who passed away in Toronto some years ago. I took a few photos, but will have to upload these when I get back as I've left the thingummyjig to connect the camera to the laptop back in Largs!
Looking forward to the two Irish sessions tomorrow evening!
Oidhche mhath! :)
Tuesday, 14 June 2011
Monday, 13 June 2011
‘PRIVATE STATS’ OF SILENT CINEMA STARS REVEALED (OR HIDDEN) IN HISTORIC STUDIO ARCHIVES NOW ONLINE
Thousands of stars of the early silver screen detailed in Motion Picture Studio Directories – online today at Ancestry.co.uk
* Includes records of Charlie Chaplin, “Fatty” Arbuckle and Oliver Hardy
* Directories reveal ‘vital statistics’ stars probably didn’t want you to know…
Ancestry.co.uk, the UK’s favourite family history website, has launched online records of the original Hollywood film studios, which profile the superstars of silent cinema at the beginning of the 20th century.
The Motion Picture Studio Directories feature thousands of leading actors, actresses cinematographers, writers, editors, directors, producers and screenwriters of the day – at a time when cinemas were selling more than 100 million tickets a week.
Actors’ entries include details of past film roles, age, birthplace, physical description (including weight for most female entries), other personal details and even a home phone number in some cases. The biggest stars often paid to include photos in order to attract greater interest from film executives (images available).
The records are littered with recognisable names such as British-born Charlie Chaplin, who reached the height of his fame during the silent film era by using mime and slapstick to great effect. His records describe him as 5’ 4” with brown hair and blue eyes, and list his address as the Charlie Chaplain Film Co on La Brea Avenue, Los Angeles. By 1921 (aged 32), he labels himself a producer/director, and interestingly his record states his birthplace as Paris rather than Walworth in London.
In fact, several actors omitted or amended their information to make them more marketable. The entry for one of the most famous of all silent movie actresses, Gloria Swanson, has the date of birth omitted, despite being just 32 at the time, and Roscoe ‘Fatty’ Arbuckle - one of the highest paid actors of the silent era - has a number of facts excluded, notably his weight.
Much like today’s online film and actors database IMDB, the directories were compiled by executives of the ‘big five’ studios – Warner Bros, FPL Corp (Paramount), RKO, MGM and 20th Century Fox. ‘Up & coming’ studios also contributed to the records, among them Universal, Columbia and United Artists.
Digitised in partnership with California State Library (where the originals ledgers are held), the records are now fully searchable online for the first time by name, birthplace and date of birth.
Some further famous names listed include:
• Oliver Hardy – The ‘big man’ of comedy double act Laurel & Hardy, Hardy appeared in hundreds of films in a career spanning over 30 years. His directory entry includes his industry nickname ‘Babe’, his unusual height for the era (6’1”) and weight (350lbs/25st).
• Lillian Gish – One of the leading actresses of the silent era and considered to be one of the greatest of all time, Gish played a lead character in The Birth of a Nation – the largest grossing of all silent movies, which made an estimated $10 million in 1915.
• Buster Keaton – Known for his constantly stoic, deadpan expression during his comedy appearances, Keaton earned the nickname “The Great Stone Face”. He is listed as having taken part in military service, fighting for the US in WWI. It is during his service that Keaton developed an ear infection which left his hearing permanently impaired.
• Mary Pickford – Known as the “American Sweetheart” or “Girl with the Curls”, Pickford was a world-renowned actress. Her records detail her career starting as early as five-years-old and list her address as 4500 Sunset Boulevard, LA.
Ancestry.co.uk International Content Director Dan Jones comments: “These records paint an intriguing picture of how the early film industry operated and include some of the first and biggest names ever to appear on the silver screen.
“It’s fascinating to see the details that would have been kept reserved for film executives of the day and perhaps the details within might provide the link needed to prove your relation to a film executive, famous director or even one many movie stars found in the directories.”
(With thanks to Annabel at Ancestry)
Saturday, 11 June 2011
For more on the story visit The Courier's coverage at www.thecourier.co.uk/Community/Heritage-and-History/article/14763/alyth-church-volunteers-put-family-history-records-online.html - for Alyth Family History Project visit www.alythparishchurch.org.uk/FHP_2009Leaflet.pdf.
(With thanks to @HebConnections on Twitter)
Friday, 10 June 2011
Thursday, 9 June 2011
Wednesday, 8 June 2011
Would you please circulate to any readers who may be wishing to visit the searchroom of Edinburgh City Archives (www.edinburgh.gov.uk/cityarchives) that we will be closed from Thursday 28th July 2011 until Tuesday 11th October 2011. This is to allow us to move the majority of our archival holdings from our existing out-store accommodation to a new substantially improved, customised facility. This will be of great benefit to our users, and to the service itself.
People can still contact us for information and advice on 0131 529 4616 or email us at email@example.com
Many thanks, Vikki Kerr
Tuesday, 7 June 2011
"Each week the show, which is being made by independent producer Lion Television, will use the findmypast.co.uk website to focus on a famous moment – such as Dunkirk or the Jack the Ripper attacks – to connect "three seemingly unrelated members of the public".
The show will be the UK's first series to feature product placement, and is sponsored by Brightsolid, FindmyPast.co.uk's parent company.
For more on the story visit http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2011/jun/07/uktv-product-placement-deal
(With thanks to @GuildOneName on twitter)
UPDATE: here's the press release!
UKTV signs first ever product placement deal with Brightsolid for Yesterday
• PP deal involves interactive placement for findmypast.co.uk
• Carrying it’s sponsor’s name, Find My Past is UKTV’s biggest co-funded AFP
• 10x60” series is Yesterday’s highest volume commission to date
Award winning broadcaster, UKTV, has inked its first product placement (PP) deal with brightsolid for its free to air factual channel, Yesterday. This agreement will see the online publisher’s genealogy sites receive interactive placement within a brand new 10x60” history series commissioned exclusively by Yesterday.
Produced by Lion Television, Find My Past is Yesterday’s highest volume commission to date. It will be co-funded by the brightsolid-owned family history site findmypast.co.uk and Britain’s most popular history channel in what is UKTV’s biggest advertiser funded programme (AFP) deal ever. Premiering in Q4 2011 exclusively on Yesterday, each of the ten hour long episodes of Find My Past will focus on a well-known moment in British history and use genealogy to connect three seemingly unrelated members of the public to that very familiar event, be it the evacuation of Dunkirk, the sinking of the Titantic or the Jack the Ripper attacks in Victorian London.
This high-profile PP and AFP deal has been put together by UKTV’s Head of Commercial Partnerships, Sally Quick, with brightsolid online publishing’s Marketing Director, John Robertson, alongside Zenith Optimedia’s Managing Partner, Tim Brady. The ten part series has been commissioned by UKTV’s Director of Commissioning, Jane Rogerson, and UKTV’s Commissioning Editor, Catherine Catton, who will also be executively producing the series with Lion TV’s David Upshal.
UKTV’s Sally Quick says, “Findmypast.co.uk already has a strong commercial association with us as Yesterday’s main sponsor, so finding and developing a fresh genealogy TV format to co-fund has been a natural next step.”
Quick continues, “Born out of what was originally an AFP deal, Yesterday’s Find My Past offers brightsolid the perfect product placement opportunity as we’re able to seamlessly integrate its websites into the content via interactive exposure by the contributors themselves.”
Brightsolid’s John Robertson comments, “Connecting people and places is at the heart of our business, so this investigative, historical format with a gripping human interest storyline is a natural fit with findmypast.co.uk. As a company with pioneering family history brands, we’re very exciting to be leading the way in advertising funded programming.”
UKTV’s deal with brightsolid will incorporate findmypast.co.uk integrated sponsor titles and end credits, branded beginning and end of parts (a total of eight BOPs and EOPs per episode), front of screen exposure in every show, alongside branding on all online activity and marketing materials associated with the brand new Yesterday series.
In each of the ten episodes of Find My Past, three members of the public are brought to a particular location and told that they have an ancestral link with that place and to each other, before they are tasked with researching their family trees and discovering their shared connections ahead of the final reveal. For instance, Yesterday’s Dunkirk episode - much filmed on and around the beach itself - will focus on one of the 850 vessels hastily assembled to evacuate the 338,226 troops stranded at Dunkirk, and will re-connect descendants of that particular boat’s owner, a rescued soldier and a soldier from the same platoon who perished on the beach before being rescued.
UKTV’s Catherine Catton adds, “The wonderful thing about Lion’s brilliant new genealogy format is that it makes familiar historical moments three dimensional. By selecting one moment and finding three real, personal perspectives on the same story, this series will bring key events from Britain’s past to life in a way that Yesterday viewers will love.”
Since launching in March 2009, Yesterday has grown to become the UK's favourite factual channel, three times the size of Discovery Channel and with a weekly reach of 7.8million viewers. Yesterday has increased its viewing share by +75% year on year (2010 vs 2009) and climbed ten places up the channel ranks to assume a top 20 channel position, beating BBC4, Quest and The History Channel. Some of Yesterday's highest rating programmes are its commissions. First Day of the Blitz peaked at 389,000 viewers while Battlefield Britain attracted a particularly upmarket audience with a 59% ABC1 profile.
(With thanks to Amy Sell and Katie Hayward)
On the back of this I emailed FindmyPast to find out if Scotland and the other non-English countries of the United Kingdom would be represented on the site in autumn in the first phase. FMP kindly contacted their British Library contacts to try to clarify the situation further and received the following statement:
“At this time it is our intention to make available a wide range of titles covering most parts of the UK, including titles from each home country. Further information on these titles will be given out nearer the launch.”
I have to say that is not exactly a definitive confirmation from the British Library of any additional content, merely an 'intention', and 'at this time'. All we can do is wait and see what happens.
Sunday, 5 June 2011
The Scotsman has the story at http://thescotsman.scotsman.com/scotland/39Sophisticated39-swindle-at-National-Library.6777672.jp?articlepage=1. In the piece Martyn Wade, national librarian and chief executive of the NLS, is quoted as saying the following: "This was a complex and sophisticated crime committed by a senior manager and budget holder who had a detailed knowledge of internal processes and procedures. Our systems identified discrepancies and as soon as these were confirmed, appropriate action was taken and the police were notified. Internal procedures were immediately reviewed and strengthened. A planned upgrade to a new financial system has recently been completed, which should prevent any future misappropriation of this kind. To date, over £146,000 of stolen funds has been recovered and the National Library of Scotland is continuing legal proceedings to recover as many funds as possible."
No longer employed by the NLS, Dinham is now facing prison, though sentencing has been delayed until June 21st in order for background reports to be carried out on him.
Comment: Considering how important the NLS's digitisation programme is for all of us in Scotland researching our family histories, this is indeed a series blow to the library's project. However, with a glass half full approach, I personally think that whilst some money-grabbing piece of filth wants to better his lifestyle by illegally appropriating money for his gain from the tax money paid by you and I, there are also decent hard working folk at the NLS who spotted the irregularities and contacted the police. To them should go our utmost thanks. Let's sincerely hope it does not happen again, and that this has not in any way damaged the library's digitisation programme.
Friday, 3 June 2011
We are welcoming a new tutor to the Pharos team! Celia Heritage, as well as having a very appropriate name, comes to us with over 25 years of experience in family history.
Celia is a regular lecturer at the Society of Genealogists in London, Canterbury Cathedral Archives and the Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies in Canterbury. She could also be heard speaking at this year’s Who Do You Think You Are? at Olympia, where she lectured and took part in expert advice sessions.
Celia is quite a media star as a regular contributor to family history magazines and radio shows, so we are delighted she is also finding the time to join the Pharos team of tutors!
We’ll publish details of Celia’s course shortly, but can reveal it will be based around local history. Celia will also be helping us to develop some further courses.
To learn more about Celia, take a look at her website at: http://www.heritagefamilyhistory.co.uk/
A top genie with bags of experience - keep an eye on www.pharostutors.com for more news soon on Celia's courses, but also to check out other course offerings from Sherry Irvine (Ireland and migration), Helen Osborn (one name studies and professional genealogy), Gill Blanchard (various), Jeremy Palmer (Australian), Simon Fowler (military), Guy Crannum (Caribbean and TNA), Hannah Baker (get the kids involved), Barbara Baker (FamilySearch), Chris Pomery (DNA), Brian Drescher (wring family history), Ruth Davies (old handwriting), Liz Carter (various) and some wee shug from Largs going by the name of Paton (Scotland)!
Belfast from £25.99* one way
Visit Belfast for a picturesque location, sparkling new developments and a top festival scene. The cultural offering is also second to none - make sure you don't miss a hundred years of TITANICa at the Ulster Folk & Transport Museum! We fly to Belfast from Edinburgh and Glasgow, from £25.99*.
*Price one way, inc. taxes. For travel between 16 June and 31 July 2011.
For more information on Titanic visit www.discoverireland.com/titanic
Tempted to go... my great great grandfather helped to build the thing!
Launch of PRONI Exhibition – A century of change, conflict and transformation
The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) is pleased to announce the opening of its first exhibition at the new state-of-the-art Headquarters in Titanic Quarter, Belfast. The exhibition entitled 'A Century of Change, Conflict and Transformation' covers the period 1911 up until the present day, and depicts not just changes in society but also changes in the records that we keep. The exhibition opened at PRONI on 25th May, and runs until 2012.
The exhibition touches upon the major events of the period and makes particular reference to the themes of governance, leisure, economy and society. There is a centrepiece display on the Blitz experience in Northern Ireland, which includes a replica Anderson Shelter. The exhibition also charts the changes in the type of media used to record information over the years and how the digital age may affect how future generations access their 'history'. Starting with 1911 diaries, it concludes with social network blogs.
Director of PRONI, Aileen McClintock said: “The exhibition showcases some of the treasures contained within the archives held by PRONI. It is a tremendous opportunity to display the archival heritage of Northern Ireland in this dedicated exhibition space. It marks an opportunity for us to reach out to whole new audiences such as school groups who will be able to see actual archive material on display. We would encourage anybody with an interest to come and visit the exhibition. There is something for everybody, from World War 2 ration books to photographs of the Delorean sports car”.
The exhibition comprises storyboards, interactive audio visual content and three cabinets displaying original documents and artefacts. Particular documents of interest include a diary of Molly Duffin containing a narrative of day to day life of a 19 year old girl growing up in Belfast in 1911; World War II pilot’s log book and medals of Wing Commander Ken McKenzie; applications to work in Northern Ireland (under the New Industries Act) received from Austrian Jews escaping persecution in Europe; correspondence relating to the debate on Capital Punishment.
Thursday, 2 June 2011
Speakers for the day will be :
* Tom Barclay, Local Studies Librarian, South Ayrshire Council.
* Dr John Burnett, Curator of Scottish Ethnology, National Museums of Scotland.
* Dr Matthew Hammond, Lecturer in Scottish History, University of Edinburgh.
* George Geddes, Archaeological Investigator with the Royal Commissions on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland and co – author of “The Archaeological Landscape of Bute” RCAHMS 2010.
There will also be a range of stalls available from 9.00am-4.30pm, including Family History Societies, Local and National History Organisations and professional and commercial businesses.
For more information visit www.south-ayrshire.gov.uk/historyfair
Wednesday, 1 June 2011
Park life - a breath of fresh air for our ancestors
Back to school - Scottish public school records
Family history in Brisbane (yours truly tracks down Paton ancestry in Queensland!)
Wick's Past - preserved for the future
Steps to trace relatives in the shoemaking trade
Spotlight on - Galashiels
Family history newsround, library and events
Downloadable on PDF for your tablet or computer, or readable online at www.discovermypast.co.uk, for just £2.50 of Her Brittanic Majesty's finest coin!