Resources

School Records

School Records

A brief discussion on the history of schooling and the records which are available for researching your family history. If you are lucky you may find a school photograph such as the one above – the trick is to identify your ancestors!

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Catholic Records

Catholic Records

Very few of Catholics own records survive much before the mid-18th century and most Catholic parish registers start only around 1840-1850. However there can be useful information in other sources, including Anglican records and court records. This article provides some ideas and sources for tracing your Catholic ancestors.

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Quaker Records

Quaker Records

The Quakers or Society of Friends were founded in 1647, with one of the earliest meetings being in County Durham.  Quakers kept excellent records and this article discusses the resources available if you are lucky enough to find Quakers in your family tree.

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Guild Records

Guild Records

Trade guilds or companies to support and control tradesmen in similar professions date back to medieval times, if not before.  The North East has excellent collections for records for these Guilds, particularly those of the cities of Newcastle and Durham. This article provides information on these records

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The Workhouse

The Workhouse

The New Poor Law of 1834 established that most feared institution: The Workhouse. Unfortunately, many of our ancestors were forced to enter these forbidding places at some time in their lives. This article includes information on the New Poor Law, the Workhouse and how to find people

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Trade Directories

Trade Directories

Today, if we are looking for goods and services we might use a website or a local newspaper or magazine.  Those of us who are somewhat older will remember Yellow Pages and the like.  However, such sources of information are nothing new and before the advent of

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World War I

World War I

World War I lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918 and impacted the lives of everyone in the UK, whether or not they actually fought in the war.  Often the starting point for researching a WWI ancestor is an item of memorabilia such as a

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Newspapers

Newspapers

In the days before the internet, local newspapers were how information on local happenings was communicated.  As such, many of our ancestors appeared in these publications at some point in their lives.  An appearance could be as simple as a brief announcement of their birth, marriage or

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Wills and Administrations

Wills and Administrations

Wills can be really interesting for family historians.  They give us an insight into the mind of the person who wrote them – not to mention that they can list most of the members of the person’s family!   This article gives information on what you might

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The Parish Chest

The Parish Chest

Parish records include many documents other than parish registers which can also be very useful to the family historian.  These are known as “The Parish Chest”, after the large wooden chests in which all parish documents were once stored – the picture above shows an example of

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