Thursday, May 26, 2005

Comedy of Errors

Michael Whitfield Foster
After six years of preparatory work, special and unprecedented permission from the Registrar General for three periods of unique research at the General Register Office (the GRO) in Southport has allowed me to explore the structures and workings of this national record system. The organisation and processes of the system have been revealed for the first time. This has produced a fascinating story of the many many ways in which the records have suffered from errors and omissions. Working directly within the GRO records has produced results far exceeding any of my prior expectations.
still one of my favourite pages

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Apple - Mac OS X

Apple - Mac OS X looks interesting

too bad no BIG genealogy programs to match

Mac OS X Tiger pushes the envelope of desktop graphics and media. Whether you create, develop or simply enjoy audio and video, Tiger makes the ideal virtual studio.


Another variant of the so-called Nigerian scam e-mail is making the rounds again and fooling some genealogists. The e-mail may appear to be sent by a barrister, (attorney) representing the estate of some long-lost relative you never knew you had (your last name may be inserted into the e-mail message) who perished along with his family in a car or airplane accident recently.

The scammer will claim to have gone to a lot of trouble to find you in order to give you a share of the (usually) millions of dollars available if you'll just forward your bank account information to him or send him some money. He may claim to have found you through RootsWeb. Do not respond to such scams.

The country involved is not always Nigeria. Ghana, South Africa and other West African states are sometimes mentioned. Occasionally the scam operates from other countries, such as the Netherlands (Amsterdam), the United Kingdom (London), Spain (Madrid), or Canada (Toronto).

The United States Federal Trade Commission has issued a consumer alert about this Nigerian scam. Americans who receive an offer via e-mail from someone claiming to need your help getting money out of Nigeria -- or any other country, for that matter -- forward it to the FTC at

There are myriad variants of this scam -- including "winning notifications" from a lottery company, fake charities, and fake church scams. Ignore them all. Save your money for genealogical research. fraud/nigeria.asp


RootsWeb Review: RootsWeb's Weekly E-zine
25 May 2005, Vol. 8, No. 21,
Circulation: 804,154+
(c) 1998-2005, Inc

Post and read messages on all relevant surname, locality, and topic

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Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Ancestry's Red Book: American State, County & Town Sources, Third Edition Explore similar items

spam I like:-
Dear Hugh,

Red Book is the culmination of several years' worth of research on the part of scholars, historians and professional genealogists.

Arguably the finest reference ever compiled on United States research, Red Book consistently ranks high on the "must-have" lists of several well-known genealogy publications.

Now, in celebration of an impressive 15 years in print, is unveiling a new third edition, marking the first revision of this seminal work since 1992.

Hurry - this incredible offer is only available from May 20-31, 2005.

MAY SPECIAL: May Special-
The Red Book for Only $29.95

In celebration of Red Book's 15th year in print, is unveiling a new third edition.

Sporting more than just a new cover, the third edition effectively builds on the hallmarks of the original - namely thoughtful organization as well as in-depth coverage of the best libraries and archives in the United States.

Red Book also promises to take genealogy into the 21st century through updated text devoted to the wealth of information now available from the internet. and I subscribe to this newsletter - Product Watch Google Search:

Google Search: Eichholz, Alice

Alice Eichholz, Ph.D., C.G.
Director of Lifelong Learning and Online Initiatives
Professor of Liberal Studies - Psychology and Family History

Union Institute & University: "As you probably guessed by now, family history is an organizing theme in my life. I came to it as an eight-year-old when I became curious about the towns in Virginia and North Carolina that had the same name as my maternal grandfather who died before I was born. Later, it became a hobby when I spent hours in the NYC 42nd Street Library searching for and writing to people all over the United States with the same name. This was long before the days of internet searching, computerized indexes and the wonderful Family History Library in Salt Lake City"

Monday, May 23, 2005

Bewcastle: Memorial Inscriptions

Bewcastle: Cumbria's Border Country: "St Cuthbert's, Bewcastle Memorial Inscriptions
A full list of all the names and dates

Several surveys have been carried out in the graveyard at Saint Cuthbert's Church, but the final and definitive one was completed by Mike Jackson in 1997. He has kindly agreed to allow the church to reproduce this survey. This task must have involved a huge amount of work, and we are very grateful for archiving this information before, in some cases, the inscriptions fade.

To quote Mike "Out of all the days that I spent in the churchyard only once did the sun break through, but even so I enjoyed my self-inflicted task, and I hope that the result will give you equal pleasure."

A full description of each grave, together with a plan of the churchyard showing numbered graves, index of persons, index of places and miscellaneous index, is available on CD in Word, Rich Text and Adobe Acrobat format, for both PC and Macintosh, either to pick up in the church, or by post from:

There is often a wealth of information on the actual grave stone, including relationships, locations and descriptions.

An example of one grave illustrates this:

In loving memory of Sybilla Jane, daughter of Thomas & Ann Forrester, of Hole of Lyne, who died June 21st. 1891, aged 4 years and 7 months. Also of John Forrester, London Scottish, their eldest son, who was killed in action in Palestine, December 8th. 1917, aged 33 years. Also the above Thomas Forrester, who died at Hole of Lyne, May 14th. 1940, aged 83 years. Also Ann, his wife, who died at Flat Bank, Gaitsgill, October 8th. 1945, aged 81 years.

Origin of surname KAAE

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Lunatic Asylums and Mental Hospitals

Index of English and Welsh Lunatic Asylums and Mental Hospitals
Based on a comprehensive survey in 1844, and extended to other asylums."

Mental Health History Timeline: "include views from mental illness and learning disability (consumers, patients, users, clients) along with views on madness and disability"
But see the Madman rage downright
With furious looks, a ghastly sight,
Naked in chains bound doth he lie,
And roars amain, he knows not why.
Observe him; for as in a glass,
Thine angry potraiture it was.
His picture keep still in thy presence;
'Twixt him and the there's no difference.