Saturday, October 8, 2011

Guild Talk and queries

The talk at BIFHSGO is completed and a surprisingly larger audience than I expected. The questions at the end were most interesting. For surname studies yDNA has become a very interesting tool and has proven to upset some surname studies of long standing that had thought a relationship existed between  them in a direct yDNA fashion. But yDNA studies have proven that no such relationship in a direct line pattern exists. Of course there is always the possibility that the son of a daughter has taken his mother's surname (perhaps for inheritance purposes) and hence the yDNA will not match. Looking back from the distance of a couple of hundred years has the difficulty of not knowing the day to day events that may have occurred.

I had one query about a Cheatle ancestor which is very interesting and I shall have a look at my Loughborough Cheatle families to see if I can place the young woman. The Cheatle family greatly interests me and it tends to be a Leicestershire family name and in specific areas of Leicestershire. However, taking on this rather interesting surname as a one name study is simply not possible. I must admit that if I were ever to take on another study then Sproxton would be the surname that I would investigate.

That was my last lecture although my family says that I have said that before. It is the problem of taking on Regional Co-ordinator of the Guild of One Name Studies. When asked to explain the Guild I would be obliged to speak about it. Fortunately slide packages have been prepared by the Guild which I can use altering them to fit my study approach.

I shall now begin work on cleaning up the data for my eventual charting of the Blake marriages. It will take me some time to ensure that I have removed all the double keyed entries. But once completed it will be an interesting set of data.

Another query was on finding wills and whether there are any particularly good websites. This is actually a full lecture in itself but I did mention Kew (The National Archives UK) where you can purchase wills for 3 pound 50 pence each. It is a very reasonable site and I have purchased close to 200 wills over my eight years in genealogy. I downloaded another large set whilst we were there at Kew and when I go again I want to acquire the rest of the blake wills. I am already building my excel file to do that. There are a number of other sites of wills after 1858. Occasionally one might find a surname site for wills and this is the case with my Arnold family. My blog contains about two thirds of the Pincombe wills that have survived and will eventually contain all of the wills.

Yet another question was on the use of software to store data and I mentioned excel which is my preferred and also that of other members of the guild. However, other members use other programs to store their data. The Master Genealogist is a favourite.

All in all an interesting question period. I tend to enjoy the question periods as it often stirs other thoughts in my mind. One sets of questions often leads to other sets of questions. I think that is perhaps the greatest unknown in genealogy - one new piece of information  often produces several questions or even more. Perhaps that is what makes genealogy very exciting - not so much the successful conclusions but the pursuit of those conclusions.

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