Thursday, July 1, 2010

Preparation for Kew

With just a couple of months to go before we travel to London and my one day at Kew I am starting to plan my time there. I had been thinking I would look at the 1911 census but the free time on Find My Past has meant that I have looked everything up that I had planned for all of my lines. My families are very small relatively speaking in this time period.

I did discover that none of Ellen Taylor's sisters married. They were school teachers in Ashton under Lyne. Her older brother did not have any children and her younger brother does not appear to have any children. That means that my Family Finder testing may not find any leads to these cousins. For the remainder I verified that Elizabeth Blake married to Allen died in childbirth in 1909. Charles Blake is also listed as dead by his parents when they reported their children born and living but he was very much alive in Africa! I found all of my grandmother's half siblings on the census and her parents/stepparent. That really doesn't leave me with anything else to look up on the census as I managed to capture all the Siderfin and Pincombe entries as well.

My next area of interest is wills and I wonder how many I can look at in one day. I have now made a list of all the wills that would likely interest me and others of only partial interest. I have highlighted the 54 with red that I especially want to see so that will be my research at Kew. I also have another 20 items that I want to look at so will need to get a Reader's Ticket when we arrive in order to order these items and hopefully I might get to see some of them before the end of the day. We have six free days in London but I only want to spend the one day at Kew. I also want to go to the College of Arms to look at the Blake crests. I have never been very interested in Crests but I have now found that the Blake family at Eastontown when they moved to Surrey used a crest that included the Billett, Durant and unknown (labelled so by the transcriber) crests by quarter. Since this is the first instance that I have knowledge of where a descendant of the Nicolas Blake family at Andover used the crest of the Blake family of Wiltshire including the Billett and Durrant family, it is of particular interest as I have not yet found anything on paper other than published books on the Blake family that clearly prove the connection between the Andover Blake family and the Calne Blake family. I am curious why they do not have the Wallop crest quartered as well but it may be that indeed my line comes from a brother to the Robert Blake who married Avis Wallop and whose images are forever recorded in a sketch held by the British Library.

We also want to take a tour of Buckingham Palace and visit a number of other museums/repositories including the Temple Church and environs. Friday is reserved for a visit to St Mary Magdalen Church at Bermondsey where my Beard, Buller and Hemsley families worshipped. St Olave is now gone as is the cemetery where my Buller family was buried. The Beard and Hemsley families were buried at St Mary Magdalen. I am curious if the St Olave is a hint for me to look for my Buller line there earlier. Perhaps we might get to the London Metropolitan Archives as well.

My husband has now found his 2x great grandmother known to be born in England around 1820 by the census. She is Mary Anne Abbs and she was baptized in 1819 at Aylmerton Norfolk. Now that he has a recent English ancestor he will likely have some items that he wants to look at as well. A trip to Norfolk might be too much this time but will save for another time.

There are many many museums that we want to visit in London as well. Yesterday the Queen was here in Ottawa and we went to the 12 noon celebration of Canada Day which she was attending. Amazingly we walked from the bus up to Parliament Hill and stood at the crowd control barrier right across from the stage set up on Parliament Hill. There were a lot of people already there but we just happened to have a place right at the barrier. The police cleared the road between the crowd barrier and the gates of Parliament Hill so that we had a clear view of all the activity on the hill including the arrival of the Queen and Prince Philip by Landau although they turned before they went in front of us. But then we could see them as they walked up the red carpet with a fairly good view (about 500 feet). Then as they left they drove right in front of us (about three feet away) as we waved enthusiastically with our Canadian flags to greet our Monarch. She was amazing doing so much at 84 years of age (and Prince Philip at 89). Hopefully she was pleased with the turnout; I have never seen so many people downtown at Canada Day noon show. There were large video screens and an excellent sound system so that we could see everything going on very well aside from being able to actually view the Queen with our eyes. God Bless Queen Elizabeth and God bless Canada. The person beside us had been at the crowd barrier for 2 hours before we arrived. We chanced to arrive just as a man left with his young children. Probably he found it too tiring to stand there with the children and the spot became ours. Amazing!

No comments: