The Church of England began requiring the recording of baptisms, marriages, and burials in 1538 although most parishes did not begin adhering to the rules until around 1600. Still, for a family like the Denchfields of North Marston, who stayed put for the next couple hundred years or so and were important members of their community, those early parish registers are a treasure trove of genealogical gold.
The registers for St. Mary’s, the established church in North Marston, date back to the late 1580s, but they are in bad shape. Before the FHL had a chance to film them, the books sustained water damage, molding the paper and smearing the ink. If that weren’t bad enough, for reasons known only to the culprit, enormous chunks were torn from each of the books, leaving one to wonder what on earth someone was trying to hide. What remained was filmed and (…more)
When John Denchfield, dairyman of North Marston, died in 1799, he left property in North Marston to his sons John and Richard. John inherited the enclosure land which had been allotted to the senior John’s father, John Denchfield, some years before. The fields were situated between the property of Mr. Lewis and Mr. Eaton. Richard, upon reaching full age, was to inherit the John’s messuage near the church, currently occupied by William Buckingham, and the messuage and close John had recently purchased from James Burnham of Winslow. The bulk of John’s estate including, presumably, the house he and his wife Mary lived in, was left jointly to Mary and son John.
Sometime during the next 10 years, this Denchfield family rather inexplicitly relocated to Aston Abbotts. John’s widow Mary, in her 1809 will transcribed here, left small financial bequests to each of her children and grandchildren, with the bulk of her (…more)
A while back, I transcribed the will of Awdry Denchfield, widow of John Denchfield. From the bequests in Awdry’s will, it appears she had been the widow of a Mr. Knowles at the time of her marriage to John Denchfield, and that she was the mother of at least three daughters and one son:
George Knowles, under age
deceased daughter, wife of William French
deceased daughter, wife of John Chandler
From other records, I was able to infer that John and Awdry’s marriage must have taken place after 1677, but the marriage is not recorded in the parish registers for North Marston, where the couple lived until John’s death in 1689, nor did it turn up in a search on FamilySearch. The Buckinghamshire Family History Society ran a search on Denchfield, and its many variants, in their database of marriages from all extant parishes in Buckinghamshire, with no success. (…more)
Awaking this morning to the first snowfall of the season and the accompanying groans of my children getting ready for the windy walk up the hill to the bus stop, it occurred to me that a trip to somewhere warm this Spring Break might be a nice idea; however, while others in my house are day dreaming of being somewhere tropical on April 2, 2012, I’m thinking only about the need to choose a hotel with free Wi-Fi. April 2nd, the day the 1940 census is officially unveiled to the public on Archives.com , is not a day I plan to spend anywhere else but in front of my laptop. Needless to say, I am holding off mentioning this to the rest of the family—the ones who get that glaze-of-the-eyes look at the mere mention of the word census.
Still, it’s never too early to make a plan!
UPDATE: The (…more)
My newest list has to do with my plan of attack for earning a Certificate in American Studies at the NIGS. Forty courses seems overwhelming, but laying a project out on paper always helps me feel more centered and prepared for action-one step at a time. The courses in blue are those I’ve already completed or I am enrolled in now. With so many electives from which to choose, I’ve put together a preliminary list of what looks most appealing, given my personal family research and areas of interest.
Compulsory (need all 28) American Studies
Electronic Resources: Using the Internet
Methodology – Part 1: Getting Started
Methodology – Part 2: Organizing and Skill Building
Research from Family History Centers to New FamilySearch
US: Census Records
US: Land Records
US: Religious Records – Part 1
US: Vital Records, Understanding 7 Using the Records
Analysis and Skills Mentoring Program (…more)
I love lists :-) Got this meme from Bill West over a month ago (I’m so behind……)
Here’s how it works: The list should be annotated in the following manner: Things you have already done or found: bold face type Things you would like to do or find: italicize (color optional) Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type 1. Belong to a genealogical society. 2. Researched records onsite at a court house. 3. Transcribed records. 4. Uploaded tombstone pictures to Find-A-Grave. 5. Documented ancestors for four generations (self, parents, grandparents, great-grandparents). 6. Have a paid subscription to a genealogy database. 7. Helped to clean up a run-down cemetery. 8. Joined the Genea-Bloggers Group on Facebook. 9. Attended a genealogy conference. 10. Lectured at a genealogy conference. (it’s good to have dreams) 11. Spoke on a genealogy topic at a local genealogy society. 12. Been the editor of a genealogy (…more)
I’m way late to the party with the 15th week of Tonia’s 31 Weeks to a Better Genealogy Blog series but it’s such a good topic I couldn’t pass on it. The task at hand is to write a post which solves a problem that your readers (or potential readers) have. Tonia discusses six ways to identify such a problem:
Solve your own problems
Look for questions in search referrals
Analyze internal searches
Ask readers for questions
Look for problems on other sites
Get ideas from friends and family
I didn’t even have to look past #1 to find something to blog about today
My main genealogical problem these days is finding time to solve my own problems, at least ancestrally speaking! I’ve got no end of excuses. Lately, aside from the general joys, trials, and tribulations of every-day life, my time has been spent on:
ProGen13 – I LOVE it! this (…more)
This month the focus of my ProGen study group is on building a personal genealogy library. My studymate Melinda was gracious enough to post her assignment early by way of a link to her online library catalog at LibraryThing.com and the rest of us are shamelessly borrowing her pretty marvelous find.
It goes without saying that, as a keeper of a blog, I LOVE the written word and, as an avid reader and writer, I’ve amassed, as I imagine a lot of bloggers have, quite a collection of books over the years. My house is bursting at the seams with books: many on overstuffed bookshelves; stacks balanced on spare chairs; the ever growing collection of must-reads on my night stand; lists of recommended titles I’d like to read but don’t own yet, tucked into my book club journal ; and bags in the garage, filled with books I’ve read but, for a variety of reasons, feel are (…more)
Thomas MacEntee from Geneabloggers posed this question the other day and I think it’s a good one.
The purpose of my blog was threefold:
to share knowledge: I wanted a place where I could securely upload my Gedcom file and share the results of 30+ years of research while still maintaining control over the data. Although I’d originally planned on using Rootsmagic4 to create static webpages of my genealogy reports which I could then upload to a page on the blog, Darrin Lythgoe’s The Next Generation (TNG) software turned out to be a much more fluid and functional solution. TNG is a database which allows users to search my data and filter it any number of ways to create unique reports and see exactly what they’re looking for. With some effort, and Darrin’s infinite patience, WordPress and TNG work seamlessly together. It’s pretty awesome!!!!!
to hone my writing skills: I love to (…more)
Yesterday was the one year anniversary of this blog It’s been a great year! Blogging has given me a chance to delve deeper into palaeography and my beloved Denchfields. Blogging prompts (thanks Thomas and Tonia!!!) have been a creative inspiration and a big help to my writing. I’ve connected with distant cousins from around the world and met some fascinating people on the message boards at Rootschat.com, at the genealogical and family history societies I’ve joined, and through the 2011 Spring Boston University Certificate in Genealogical Research program and the ongoing ProGen13 study group. Also can’t forget to mention my fellow bloggers and Twitter co-horts
This past year, I’ve enrolled in classes at the National Institute of Genealogical Studies, completed a draft of Turner Collins Genealogy my family history book, traveled to England for a family vacation/genealogical research fieldtrip, and begun volunteering at the local county history (…more)