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Ezine masthead image
Welcome to the September 2012 Edition of the FFHS Ezine                                                        No 34

Society Spotlight:
Leicestershire & Rutland FHS

Protect your Research

Family History Courses

Caribbean Family History Group Exhibition

50 Years of Caribbean Independence

Caribbean Histories Revealed


New on our Website

How to get the Most from Original Records

London Family History Centre

NA Records Collection Policy

Archives Strategy

Family History Society Open Days and Fairs

This Month's Book Giveaways

Scottish Flemish Surnames

Exodus 2013

Genealogical Society of Ireland Newlsletters

Back to our Past

Interactive Gravestones


Book Reviews

Diary Dates

Advertise with us

Competition Winners

Leics FHS Logo

Society Spotlight

Leicestershire & Rutland Family History Society

The society began in life in 1974 as the Leicester Family History Circle and in 1992 the county of Rutland was incorporated into the Society when the name changed to the Leicestershire & Rutland Family History Society.  Currently, there are approximately 2,500 members and the society also publishes a quarterly journal. There are 6 society groups who meet monthly situated in Wigston, Loughborough, Hinckley, Market Harborough and Oakham and a bi-monthly Computer User Group.  They have an excellent projects team indexing local registers, baptisms, burials, marriages and more, having recently published their 100th CD of data. The society has an excellent, large research centre situated in Leicester City Centre at Unit 4B, Pilot House, King Street, Leicester LE1 6RN (telephone 0116 2857211 for details and opening hours). With 10 online computers and a vast array of microfiche and books, this is the place to start or further your research.  There is also access to the GRO birth and marriage indexes from 1837 to 2002, the National Probate (Wills) Index containing details of 7 million wills and the IGI as well as numerous data CDs.  The Research Centre is staffed by a helpful band of volunteer assistants who will be happy to assist newcomers to get started and offer advice and assistance when required.Full details of the Society, its activities and publications can be found on the website.

Protect Your Research
Would you be annoyed to discover your family tree published on an unfamiliar website without your permission?  The Lost Cousins newsletter reported how one reader found her family tree on such a website.  Many of us have put our family history research online without reading the small print but perhaps you are not aware that many companies’ terms and conditions allow them the right to use your research and even “copy, publish, distribute” – how they wish.  This also includes “private trees”.  Before you decide whether to put your family tree online make sure you read the website’s terms and conditions thoroughly and if you don’t agree with them, don’t give them your research!


Pharos Teaching & Tutoring Logo

Family History Courses
Pharos Teaching and Tutoring are offering 10% off selected courses. Please see their website for further details and a list of other courses they offer.   Dorset Family History Society have 2 workshops coming up - Researching Your London Ancestors, Friday 26 October 2012 and Researching Your Scottish & Irish Ancestors, Thursday 8 November 2012.  Both courses are open to members and non-members; see the Dorset FHS website for further details.  Perhaps a society near you is offering a course or workshop which could help you to take your research further.  See the FFHS website to find a family history society in your area.  Also see our website for updated courses information, including new online courses.

Caribbean Family History Group Logo

Caribbean Family History Group
The Caribbean Family History Group will be holding its third annual exhibition at Solihull Library, Birmingham, during October.  This year’s theme is “Telling Stories” which will include visual and written stories drawn from Caribbean researchers’ experiences. Some of the stories to be included are - a group member's research journey back to the times of plantations in Jamaica; finding a Nevisian great grandfather's birth information starting with only his nickname and a supposed journey to the US; an expansion of the experience of a member’s Jamaican great uncle in WW1 and the death of a group member’s mother and how it led to the changing of the law in the UK.  The exhibition will highlight the records available to help further your Caribbean research.  The exhibition is free and for further information email the Caribbean Family History Group or telephone number is 0121 688 3206 (answerphone).

Johnson Richardson families

50 years of Caribbean Independence
To commemorate 50 years of Jamaican and Trinidadian independence the National Archives has placed images from the Colonial Office photographic collection on Flickr. CO 1069 is a diverse collection of images featuring hundreds of photographs taken in countries including Jamaica, Barbados and Antigua in the West Indies.   Comments and feedback are welcomed to help bring the collection to life as in many instances little is known about the photographs.

The National Archives also has a “Caribbean Histories Revealed” page on its website. The exhibition explores the history of the British Caribbean through documents, photographs and maps dating from the 17th century through to the 1920s.  The photograph is of the Johnson and Richardson families.  If you have any connection to the people in the photo and would like a copy, please contact the editor.

Historypin is a global photographic archiving website that allows users to 'pin' photos to googlemaps.  Users can then street-view the photographs where you can see an area or building at different points throughout history.  Historypin is also working with schools and inter-generational projects as well as encouraging institutions community groups and individuals to pin their own photos and create a personal channel to share their family photographs and stories.  169,733 photos, videos, audio clips and stories have been pinned so far.  It is free to sign up to and use. See the website.

FFHS LogoNew on Our Website
We have recently added a new section to the FFHS website to help commemorate World War 1. Throughout 2012 and beyond, the Federation of Family History Societies hopes to make available a variety of content on our website aimed at helping you to research your First World War ancestors as well as making you aware of a range of events and activities that will be taking place around the country in the lead up to the centenary. There is a list of relevant websites to help you with your research, a ‘Can you Help?’ page and a page dedicated to War Memorials and how to help record and preserve these monuments.  Please keep revisiting for new content as and when we receive it.

How to get the Most from Original Records
Archives provide the building blocks for family history research. They are collections of original or rare materials produced by people and organisations, whether or not they realised that their work would interest future generations.  A large proportion of the archives that you will need to consult for family history research are held in local record offices or The National Archives. Archives may also be found in places such as university libraries and museums.  Our website now includes a section on ‘How to get the most from using original records’

London Family History Centre
With thanks to Francis Howcutt for the following articles: The London Family History Centre is temporarily using accommodation on the first floor of The National Archives at Kew because of building work at the Hyde Park Chapel, where it was formerly located. The relevant agreement runs until 31 March 2013. It has not yet been decided what will happen after that date, but TNA will soon be discussing this subject with representatives of the Centre. 

National Archives

Records Collection Policy
The National Archives has released the draft of a new Records Collection Policy. The policy sets out which records TNA proposes to collect from public records bodies, when it would collect them and where the records would be held.  Any feedback on the proposals should be submitted by 5 October 2012

Archives Strategy
“Archives for the 21st Century” is the government policy on archives that was published in November 2009. To support the policy, TNA has published “Archives for the 21st Century in action: refreshed”. Further details can be found here.

Family History Society Open Days and Fairs
Family History Society Open Days and Fairs are a great way to learn more and be inspired to dig deeper into your family history research.  Some Open Days are listed below or go to GENEVA to see if there are any near you.

Pontefract and District Family History Society
20 September 2012 at Pontefract Methodist Church Hall, Micklegate Pontefract.  Chris Cade to speak on 'Just three words'.  See the website for further details and recent publications.

Doncasterand District FHS

Doncaster and District Family History Society Fair
Saturday 22 September 2012, at the Doncaster College for the Deaf, Leger Way, Doncaster DN2 6AY.  From 10am to 4pm.  Admission - £1.00p (under 15 years old free) Everyone is welcome.  Refreshments available. Free Car Parking. Many family history and general history groups attending. See the website for further information.

Fenland Family History Society
Saturday 22 September 2012 at St. Peter’s Church Hall, Wisbech.  From 10am to 4.30pm.  Family History stands and help from experienced researchers. Refreshments available. Free Car Parking.  See the website for further information.

West Middlesex Family History Society Open Day  
Sunday 23 September 2012 at The White House Community Centre, Hampton, Middlesex.  From 10am to 4.30pm. See the website for further information.

Oxfordshire FHS Logo

Oxfordshire Family History Society Open Day
Saturday 6 October 2012 at the Marlborough School, Shipton Road, Woodstock, OX20 1LP.  From 10am to 4pm.  Free admission – Free parking – Fully accessible.  Family History Societies; Museums; Oxfordshire History Centre; Genealogical Suppliers; Books, CDs and more on sale and also research help.  See the website or email for further details.

Glamorgan FHS Family History Fair
13 October 2012 Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre, Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Village, CF48 1UT Details are on the website including a list of exhibitors, FindMyPast, WDYTYA magazine, etc. The Fair will be promoted as "Event of the month" in "WDYTYA Magazine" and there will be a "Spotlight on Glamorgan" written by the Glamorgan FHS President Gwyn Rhys, in "Your Family Tree Magazine" in the October editions.

West Surrey FHS Open Day
Saturday 3 November at Woking Leisure Centre, from 10am to 4.30pm.  Free admission.  65 different family and local history societies and genealogically related commercial stallholders; a specialist help desk facilities and a series of free talks running through the day. See the WSFHS website for further information.

Huddersfield & District Family History Society
Saturday 10 November 2012 at  Batley Town Hall. 10am to 4pm. Help and advice on all aspects of genealogy. Large number of stands and exhibitors (including Family and Local History, Books, Maps, Photographs, genealogy supplies and software) Refreshments, Raffle. See the website for further information.

Huddersfield 7 District FHS Logo


The Few Book Cover

This Month's

Book Giveaways

This month we have ‘The Few – The Story of the Battle of Britain in the Words of the Pilots’ by Dilip Starker, kindly donated by Amberley Publishing to give away.  To be in with a chance of winning, please send an email to competitions@ffhs.org.uk with ‘The Few’ in the subject line before 21 October 2012.

If you have ancestors who served in the RAF you can find information on how to obtain their service records on the RAF website.  Also, findmypast.co.uk has recently published the nominal roll of Royal Air Force servicemen who were with the service when it was formed on 1 April 1918.  The collection contains the details of over 181,000 men who originally joined the Royal Flying Corps or the Royal Naval Air Service.  These 2 groups merged and formed the RAF in 1918.

Our second book is ‘Bonnie Prince Charlie- A Life’ by Peter Pininski and kindly donated by Amberley Publishing.  To win a copy send an email to competitions@ffhs.org.uk with ‘Charlie’ in the subject line before 21 October 2012.

If you are tracing your Scottish ancestors, you may find a recent review on our website of ‘My Ancestor was Scottish’ by Alan Stewart useful.  For a list of family history societies in Scotland visit the Scottish Association of Family History Societies website.

The ScotlandsPeople website is celebrating 10 years since it was launched and is looking for success stories from researchers who have used the website. "I am delighted that in our special birthday year we'll be enhancing this popular resource for Scottish family history by adding hundreds of thoudsands of new wills" says George MacKenzie, Registrar General and Keeper of the Records.

Bonnie Prince Charlie

Scottish Flemish Surnames
John Irvine and Alex Fleming of the Abertay Historical Society are planning a project on the ancestry of Flemish people in Scotland and are looking for people to share their family and/or local history stories with them.  The Flemish arrived in Scotland in waves, the earliest being after the Norman Conquest in 1066 and then towards the end of the sixteenth century another wave of immigrants took place and this was followed, towards the end of the seventeenth century, by Flemish Huguenots fleeing persecution after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes.  If your surname is one of these - Baird, Balliol, Beaton, Brodie, Bruce, Cameron, Campbell, Comyn, Crawford, Douglas, Erskine, Fleming, Graham, Hamilton, Hay, Innes, Lindsay, Murray, Oliphant and Seton - you might like to get in touch with John or Alex through the ScotlandsPeople website.

Exodus 2013
The Halsted Trust is holding a conference entitled “Exodus 2013” and is inviting submissions for papers and presentations.  The organisers are looking for a variety of themes, including, British Migration from, to and within the British Isles, Tracing the origins of migrant ancestors, The reasons for migration and DNA as evidence for migration.  The deadline for submissions is 30 September 2012.  The conference is to be held in September 2013 in Leicestershire.  For more details please see the Halsted Trust and the Exodus 2013 websites.

Genealogical Society of Ireland Newsletters
The Genealogical Society of Ireland has put copies of its newsletter online.  Copies from 1997 can be freely accessed via the website. This unique resource consists of 112 copies of 'The Genie Gazette' which was published up to December 2005 and also 80 copies of 'Ireland's Genealogical Gazette' from January 2006.

Back to our Past
The popular family history event returns to Dublin for its third year and will run from 12 to 14 October.  The organisers have said “this year’s event promises to be even bigger with all 50 of last year’s exhibitors expressing an interest in exhibiting again”. See the Back to our Past website for further information.

Interactive Gravestones
From the Lancashire Family History and Heraldry Society forum: Traditional graveyards are being transformed through technology with interactive headstones providing a revolutionary way for people to remember loved ones. Quick Response (QR) codes on gravestones can be scanned by smartphones to open up online biographies of the dead person. The related webpage can show profiles of the person, pictures, videos and tributes from family and friends.  For the full story see the Guardian website.


October is Black History month in the UK so for this edition we are featuring the 'Black Presence in Britan' website. More of a website with featured stories and histories rather than a blog; it celebrates the contribution and history of black people in Britain. The website was "set up in 1998 due to a lack of information about the contribution of Black people to British history to be found on the Internet. The site has lots of information and articles to get people started in their understanding of the history and culture of Black/African people over the centuries."

FFHS logo

The FFHS Ezine has a current readership of over 14,500 worldwide. To discuss sponsorship or advertising, please email
Ezine Editor Samantha Bourne

Book Reviews

To read reviews of recently published books of interest to family historians

visit our Book Review Page

Ezine Competition Winners

A full list of Ezine competition winners can be seen on the FFHS website.

view competition winners

Diary Dates

The FFHS will be attending the following events:

Creative Stitches & Hobbycrafts, Westpoint Centre, Exeter 27-30 September 2012

Hobbycrafts, NEC Birmingham 8-11 November 2012

For further events visit our Events Page on our website and GENEVA