Author Archives: rosbot

The International Genealogical Index – What is it and how do you use it?

Once upon a time, before the internet, when you had laboriously gone through the original parish registers at the local record office, and found your ancestor missing, your next port of call would be to look at the International Genealogical … Continue reading

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Brick Walls – 5 Actions to take when you have too many results

It is not always possible to find out which, of all the many possibilities, is your ancestor. However, there are some strategies you can try which may lead you to the right one. The following actions are what I usually try when attempting to break through this particular brick wall: Continue reading

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The Life of a Victorian Actress

In a time when women were more or less the property of men, actresses, and other female entertainers, had a rather unique place in society. Following a ‘profession’, the kind of career choice that was barred to most women, gave the actress an autonomy that has more similarities to a woman of the late 20th century than those of her own age. Continue reading

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Visiting Your Ancestors

When you are next thinking about where to go on holiday, why not try an ancestral trail, and visit the homes and places where your ancestors lived and worked?  If you have done a lot of research, and have some … Continue reading

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Brick Walls: Unknown Birthplace

One of the most frustrating brick walls in genealogy is when you cannot find an ancestor in the local baptism registers, and they have died before the 1851 census when specific places of birth were given.  You might even have … Continue reading

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Short History of Immigration in the UK and how to search the records

In the light of recent political events, immigration is a subject that has been very much on my mind lately. While not wishing to get on any kind of political soap box here, as a professional genealogist I am very aware that many, if not most, of us are the descendants of immigrants, without, perhaps, even realising it. Continue reading

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Brexit, Trump and Pandora’s Box – some thoughts on 2016

This is a little bit of a deviation from the usual subject matter of genealogy here.  But in the aftermath of the American Election, I felt the need to put pen to paper and post it somewhere.  However, it does … Continue reading

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How to deal with a Wobbly Ancestor

We probably all have one.  And I don’t mean an ancestor who drank too much (though we probably all have a few of those too!).  What I mean is an ancestor who you are around 70-90% sure is your ancestor, … Continue reading

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Are you in the Family of Lancelot “Capability” Brown?

This year is the 300th anniversary of the birth of Lancelot Brown, who went on to create some of the greatest landscaped gardens of England. Continue reading

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The 1939 Register – Why is It Important?

I am very excited about the forthcoming release of the 1939 Register on This is going to be very useful for people tracing ancestors and relatives after the 1911 census – and not only that, future genealogists will find it indispensable to bridge the gap made by the lack of census records between 1921 and 1951. Continue reading

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