Sunday, February 15, 2009

Bishops Nympton Parish Register - 15 February 2009

Back to Bishops Nympton Parish Register which is the first one that I started to transcribe about four years ago. It was slow going at the beginning but I have now completed up to 1812 for absolutely everything that I purchased from the Devon Record Office. I completed the Banns today and they actually go up to 1885 which was a surprise - there are a number of gaps in the 1800s but they are quite complete up to about 1820 from 1755 with one period missing 1795 to 1804. I am now working on the baptisms from 1813 on. I have done 1827 to 1837 so need to reach 1827 and then do 1837 practically up to the present. I have 50 pages to do to reach 1827. I find out an amazing amount on my families whilst transcribing. Since Devon did their own microfilming of these registers though I will not publish them as they are under copyright to them. Eventually when I have proofread everything I will send a copy to the Registry Office - my bit as the daughter of English emigrants.

Certainly my grandfather remained British to his dying day since he had only been lent to the Railroad here and was to have returned in 1922 to England to his job there. But the loss of manpower was enormous here in the 1st World War and they asked him to stay on and then on longer and eventually he retired here in 1943 after 30 years of service here and he already had 15 years of service with the Southern Railway in England. He loved to talk about England but half of his family died during the 1st and 2nd World Wars and then his wife died here so the incentive to go back home was quite low by 1943. There were five of us grandchildren by 1947 and when I really remember him by 1949 he just simply enjoyed being with us and keeping us in line! He described Upper Clatford to me so many times that when I went there I recognized some of the places from his description including the house where he grew up (likely!). There is just one of the three row houses left now but it appears to be the one that he grew up in (his grandparents lived right next door) with his 11 siblings although they ranged in birth year from 1872 to 1894 so that the oldest ones were already gone when the youngest arrived and two died as small children.

For my Devon ancestors I have less vivid stories because they came third hand. My ancestors left Bishops Nympton (actually Molland but that is another story) in 1850 (November 20) and arrived in New York City 7 January 1851. My great grandfather was just 14 years old when he came on to Canada in March 1851 but he shared the stories of Devon with his only son who then retold the stories to my mother (his only daughter). Of course my grandfather also knew his grandfather very well as he lived to be 86 years old and died in 1894 when Grandpa Pincombe was 22 years old. 2x great grandmother Pincombe was more of a mystery but I finally solved that one as she died when my Grandfather was only six years old. She was actually from Somerset which was part of the mystery.

Later today we went babysitting the Chihuahua (our son in law to be's dog) and he was so happy to see us as the others were going to take the puppy for his training lessons. The Puppy is now bigger than the Chihuahua but they are getting along better and better. The Puppy takes cues from the older dog and more so each day. We went for a long walk although it was a windchill of minus 15 degrees celsius. We stayed on the sunny side of the street which helped.

Tomorrow I shall continue with the Bishops Nympton Parish Registers as I would like to complete them by the end of February or by mid March (Baptisms go to the early 1990s, Marriages only until 1837, Burials also to the 1990s). By 1900 though there are few baptisms and few burials per year. Then I can continue the proofreading and transfer of the word document to an excel file to make lookups easier when people write to ask me about Bishops Nympton (although it is easy to search on the word file). I want to be able to sort on last names to look at my various lines through the five hundred years. I am still contemplating a one place study and Bishops Nympton would be one of my thoughts although I am still thinking of Upper Clatford. I have more documentation on Bishops Nympton but more verbal stories of Upper Clatford. It will be a hard decision and on the other hand perhaps I could do both. Then there is Turnworth Dorset about which my father told me a great deal because he visited his great grandfather there as a child every summer until he died in 1912. Turnworth is a remarkable place as we discovered when we visited last spring. Decisions! Decisions! Decisions!

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