Genealogy news roundup: Fife Family History Society releases Kalendar of Convicts

By Rosemary Collins, 26 April 2018 - 1:55pm

Plus: Findmypast adds British army widows records; Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine ends Britain Remembers project; AncestryDNA research reveals average British person has over 16,000 cousins

ScotlandsPeople
The Kalendar includes mugshots of arrested criminals (Credit: Fife Family History Society)

The Fife Family History Society (FFHS) launched the Fife Kalendar of Convicts as a record release at the 29th Scottish Association of Family History Societies Conference and Family History Fair on 21 April.

The Kalendar contains over 45,000 Fife court records from 1790-1880, accompanied by more information about the individuals in birth, marriage and death records, census returns, newspaper articles, transported convict records and photographs.

The project, led by FFHS editor Andrew J Campbell, took over 20 years to complete.

The Kalendar is available as a CD and digital download for £15.

 

Findmypast adds British army widows records

The stories of British army officers' families are now easier to uncover in a new collection of widows' applications for pensions from Findmypast.

The subscription family history website has indexed and digitised over 13,000 records from The National Archives digital microfilm series WO 42: War Office: Officers' Birth Certificates, Wills and Personal Papers.

The collection, 'British Army Officers' Widows' Pension Forms 1755 - 1908', consists of bundles of original documents submitted in support of pension claims made by the widows of British Army officers, including application forms, BMD certificates and parish baptism, marriage and burial records.

This means that searching for a single military officer could be enough to unlock vital records for his wife and children as well.

Findmypast adds British army widows records

 

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine ends Britain Remembers project

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine regrets to inform readers that we are ending our Britain Remembers project.

The decision was taken after a change in pricing structure by the project's web host, ZeeMaps, means that it is no longer available to view.

We would like to thank the 185 local groups who shared their projects to commemorate the centenary of the First World War on the map.

Readers who would still like to share their projects may do so at the Historypin First World War Centenary website.

 

Ancestry research reveals average British person has over 16,000 cousins

New research to mark DNA Day on 25 April has revealed that the average British person has over 16,000 genetic eighth cousins or closer.

AncestryDNA carried out anonymised testing of customers born in the UK and discovered that they have an average of 16,895 eighth cousins or closer - meaning relatives who share a traceable ancestor born in the last 200 years - with 1,228 living in the UK.

People have more cousins the further north they live, with an average of 21,000 for those in Scotland and 20,000 for those in the North-west.

DNA Day commemorates the date in 1953 when James Watson, Francis Crick, Maurice Wilkins, Rosalind Franklin and colleagues published papers identifying the double helix structure of DNA, and the Human Genome Project was completed in 2003.

Find your relatives with our roundup of the best DNA Day special offers

 

Thousands of photographs of pre-NHS healthcare go online

A new collection of black and white photographic prints capturing medical care between 1938 and 1943 has gone online after being discovered at Historic England's Archive in Swindon.

The 4,050 Topical Press Agency photographs are accompanied by detailed typed captions and record healthcare during the Second World War and before the foundation of the National Health Service.

The topics covered include improvised wartime hospital wards, blood donation and transfusion, infection control, treatment of burns, early plastic surgery, and nurses training and relaxing in their time off.

Of the images, 2,100 have now been digitised in a searchable database on Historic England's website.

The aim is to conserve, catalogue and digitise them all in a project funded by the Wellcome Trust.

 

FamilySearch celebrates surpassing two billion images

Free family history website FamilySearch has announced that its collection has surpassed two billion images of family history records.

The website, which is free and run by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, holds census, birth, marriage, death, court and immigration records.

FamilySearch said that it is currently adding over 300 million new images a year.

The service stopped microfilm distribution in September 2017 in order to focus on the digitisation programme, which it aims to complete by 2020.

All the images are available to browse, and online volunteers and partners are working to index them.

 

RootsIreland adds over 59,000 Limerick records

RootsIreland has added over 59,000 family history records from Limerick Genealogy.

The new additions include Roman Catholic baptism, marriage, dispensation and burial records from different parishes in the county, with the earliest dating to 1770 in Croom and the latest to 1900 in Kilcolman and Coolcappa.

Other records include tithe applotment books, census records, non-Catholic civil marriage records and a database of Limerick people from various sources between 1799 and 1867, containing 8285 names.

The records are available to RootsIreland subscribers, but some of them are already available for free, such as the applotment books via the National Archives of Ireland.

 

Place names available to search on National Library of Scotland website

Over two million place names are available to search in the National Library of Scotland free online collection of Ordnance Survey six-inch-to-the-mile maps for the first time.

The maps, which cover Britain from 1888 to 1913, were digitised by the GB1900 project.

Family and local historians can view the maps as overlays on the NLS Gazetteer.

In some areas researchers can even search for the names of individual streets and farms, including those which have now been lost.

 

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