Category Archives: domentation

Unwed motherhood in 1809 — #genealogy #history

So I’m on the Family Search indexing site indexing a record from Sussex, UK, Church of England, indexing a parish record from 1809. Right smack dab in the middle of the record is a female child born to a woman with no husband… in 1809. Where all the other children have a father listed, this one does not.


What was it like in 1809 for a single mother and child? I imagine they were both probably shunned by the local society. She had the baby baptized, but would anyone sit near her in church?




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Come on, this must have happened to you too

Okay, so there I am on minding my own business, building my tree, armed with a plethora of family history and dates. Then some kind soul emails me through Ancestry and tells me that someone one of the branches of my tree is wrong (my great grandfather). The tree that I so carefully filled was wrong?

So what happens if you make an error on your tree? Do you toss it out and start all over again? No, you work the steps from yourself back through time until you find all the facts. But what if you aren’t wrong? You begin the laborious task of proof all over again anyway.

The Irish name in question is so common that maybe my tree and her tree are both right.

Go back to basics and your sources:

My tree is made up of facts from the family bible and family sources:

family bible pages can be indecipherable, but can contain some of the best information

You can find some records on Ancestry:

You can find priceless information in texts online that contain a lot of detail - most of the books on (where this page comes from) are also available for free on Google books

Or, you can go to my favorite FREE site – FamilySearch – and find transcribed records of historical texts:

So, the next time your information is challenged, remember that you may actually be right and, just to recheck yourself, you can use these sources.



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An interesting discovery in the 1900 census

Having practiced quite a bit of genealogy, I have found multiple relatives through oral family history, WWII draft cards, and census records. I was even lucky enough to find transcription of the marriage certificate for my great great grandparents on my Dad’s maternal side (still have to go to the family history library and order the microfilm). I also have quite a bit of experience with indexing records for and have been noticing occupations on census records more and more. So, I decided to look at the census records for the family members I found long ago, before I knew anything really about genealogy. I was just happy back then to trace back to a name.

I went back to the census records I verified earlier, but didn’t look at too closely. I found my great great grandmother had an occupation other than “keeping house” – seen on most census records.


My great great grandmother Mary Jane was a midwife! Pretty amazing!

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Posted by on March 30, 2011 in Census, domentation


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