Some good news for a change, all restrictions have now been lifted for visitors to the Family History Centre at The Birmingham & Midland Institute.
The library is open every day, Monday to Friday10:15 – 12:30 and 12:45 – 15:00.
The librarians on duty each day are:
Monday – Liz & Steve
Tuesday – Bernie & Gareth
Wednesday – Sue & Linda
Thursday – Mark & Pat
Friday – Caroline
Changes to these opening days and times will take place when a bank holiday occurs, sometimes including even the Tuesday. If travelling from a distance you are advised to check first. You can do so by phoning Bernie on 0121 454 4307. If unavailable, telephone the BMI on 0121 236 3591.
Full details can be seen on the Society website, https://midland-ancestors.uk/about/libraries/
As you may know, we are also a FamilySearch Affiliate Library, and I can’t wait to go in to view the images of the original records that go with the LDS historical indexes. There are an estimated 400 million + images of original records that you cannot see at home. My list of things to do in the library grows longer by the minute. Perhaps I should take in my bed!
DATES FOR YOUR DIARY
Sunday 25 September 2022 10:00 – 16:00 – The Birmingham Local and Family History Fair
Now all restrictions have been lifted (and we hope it stays that way), Phil has organised another Birmingham Local and Family History Fair at the Midland Arts Centre, Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham. There will be 35+ tables featuring community groups, history groups, genealogy groups, small commercials, postcards, photographs, memorabilia, books, souvenirs and local artwork
More details here – www.birminghamhistoryfair.uk
Friday 11 November 6:00pm – 10:00pm GMT and Saturday 12 November 10:00am – 6:00pm GMT – Really Useful online Family History Show
Organised by the Family History Federation
Full details can be found on www.fhf-reallyuseful.com (Early bird tickets available now)
18 June 2022 – Online Event 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM – In Search of…My English Ancestors
Presented by Society of Australian Genealogists
Cost: Members – AU$70.00
Non-members – AU$110.00
This may be of interest to our members abroad, a one-day virtual conference with presentations on how to research your English ancestors.
For further information go to https://www.sag.org.au/events
Saturday 11th June 2022 – Local history in Britain Day
To be held at the Conway Hall, London or will be available online. Guest-speaker for the day, lecturer and BBC broadcaster Dr Janina Ramirez.
For further details go to https://www.balh.org.uk
Wednesday, 1 June 2022 – 2pm – 4pm – Lost industries and businesses of Birmingham – Keith Clenton
To be held at the BMI Birmingham or available online.
For many years Keith has been involved with Carl Chinn Birmingham Lives Photographic Archive. Keith will present photographs that outline the decline in manufacturing resulting in the closure of many firms.
To register go to https://midland-ancestors.uk/events click on the calendar and scroll down to the appropriate entry.
North Staffs Group – 6 June – Research evening
Wolverhampton Group – 29 June – Members research session
Kenilworth Group – 8 June – Richard Churchley presents My Churchley family: a typical West midlands family?
Stourbridge Group – 21 June – Paul Hudson presents Stories from the collection at the Hive, Worcester
Full details are also available in the yellow programme booklet.
You may or may not be aware that a new system for registering marriages came into force last year which includes the names of the couple’s parents. That’s the good news and there are two bits of bad news. All records will now be kept electronically and although churches may continue to have marriage registers, they will no longer fulfil any legal requirement, and any certificates issued by the church will be ceremonial rather than legal. At least as family historians we may still be able to see the registers.
The other bit of bad news is that although the mother’s details will be included, they will only include her married name and not her maiden name.
(Talk about one step forward and two steps back).
Thanks to Peter Calver in his Lost Cousins newsletter for this information
Oxfordshire family history Society have sent me details of a huge list of Facebook genealogy groups, containing 16,700+ links (updated in January 2021) https://moonswings.files.wordpress.com/…/genealogy-on-Facebook-Jan-2021.pdf
Based on Cyndi’s listing, and starting with the USA, it is worth searching and we are in there!
Something else you might be interested in reading is a blog from David Annal. David is a very well-known Family Historian, member of the GoONS and AGRA and head of Lifelines Research.
Following various discussions about the quality of the 1921 census, David has penned a blog on Transcripts and Indexes and the question of charging users for an imperfect transcription.
He points out that the idea that it might be possible to create a commercial transcription which even approaches 100% accuracy, is a pipe dream, especially as the work itself if not checked when transcribed.
Even the 1881 census which was a collaboration between the LDS and Family History Societies, although checked and re-checked, contains what we would call transcription errors and the reason being is that transcribers were told to transcribe what was written. Any error could be on the part of the enumerator who could not know the area, only writes down what he ‘thinks’ he hears but also people didn’t necessarily tell the truth!
So please read David’s blog. There is also an interesting one of Key Hill Cemetery. https://lifelinesresearch.co.uk/2022/05/22/transcripts-and-indexes/
An interesting article has popped up on my Facebook page from National Archives. It is called Recovering the record: Beyond 2022 at The National Archives. A century ago on 30 June 1922 the Four Courts in Dublin were destroyed in the opening engagement of the Irish Civil War.
This is where the seven centuries of Irish archival history was stored and in the main, destroyed.
Now, however, technological advances and a renewed interest have made it possible to assess fully what has been lost and through a project called Beyond 2022, the Virtual Record Treasury of Ireland will launch on 27 June 2022.
Comprised of historians, archivists, computer scientists, heritage scientists, and conservators, based at Trinity College Dublin, it has five core partners (National Archives Ireland, the Public Records Office of Northern Ireland, The National Archives of the UK, the Irish Manuscripts Commission, and the Library at Trinity College Dublin), alongside the participation of over 70 memory institutions worldwide.
For the last five years work has been ongoing to assess fully what was in the PROI when it was destroyed, before searching for records that act as replacements for those that were destroyed in 1922.
Fascinating stuff and I know that technically it is not ‘in our area’, but I am sure that most of us have some ‘Irish’ in our family somewhere.
For further information go https://blog.nationalarchives.gov.uk/recovering-the-record-beyond-2022-at-the-national-archives
A bit closer to home, were your relations in Burma in WW2 at a place called Kohima? The Kohima Museum have posted on their Facebook page an article about the War Diaries and especially the men in the Worcestershire Regiment who were killed on 11 April 1944. To read the full article go to the Kohima Museum page on Facebook or go to their website http://www.kohimamuseum.co.uk/
Thanks to Avril in my local U3A Group for drawing my attention to this.
Can I mention again our Facebook pages. During the month I do get in lots of information on courses, articles, etc. that are normally too late for me to use in my newsletter but I do post them on to either our BMSGH Members only Facebook page, or our general Midland Ancestors Facebook page. I know a lot of members are wary about signing up to Facebook, but provided you are careful and don’t click on links that you are unsure about, you should not have a problem. So if nothing else why not just sign up to our Society pages:
BMSGH Members Only page https://www.facebook.com/groups/1078784015528807
Midland Ancestors DNA Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/277503292752151
Midland Ancestors General Page https://www.facebook.com/search/top?q=midland%20ancestors
Don’t forget to send Linda any articles you may have for the Midland Ancestors.
Steve Freeman has asked me to let you know the current shop offers which are available via the online shop at https://midland-ancestors.shop
This is a list of current discounts:
• Get 20% off all books, new or used, use coupon code book20 during checkout
• My Family History record book was £9.99, so with offer is £8, our biggest seller
• There are lots of other special offers available as well, https://midland-ancestors.shop/index.php?route=product/special
• Dawn has been adding more used books, so keep an eye on the “Latest” section on the shop home page as more will be added over the coming weeks
To use a coupon/discount code, view Shopping Cart (black box top right) and select “Use Coupon Code” and add your code, then go to checkout to complete your order
Finally, a little bit of sad news. Many of you may have known, or at least have heard of Iain Swinnerton. Col. Swinnerton joined the Society in 1971 and was instrumental in the formation of the Stourbridge Group. He held many ‘hats’ within the Society including Treasurer. He was also ‘our’ expert on anything military. Iain died last Tuesday aged 90 and his expertise will be sadly missed. Our condolences to his family.
So that’s it for now. If you have anything you would like to pass on to our other members, please let me know.