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Monday 5 November 2018

NWKFHS Sevenoaks Branch Indoor Street Party on 8 November 8pm

'Street Party' to commemorate the end of WW1 

If you are free this Thursday evening 8 November at 8pm please join members of North West Kent Family History Society at their indoor street party. 

Just bring a small tea - plate size plate of food with you towards the group refreshments. No need to book. 

More info from sevenoaks@nwkfhs.org.uk 

Venue: Sevenoaks Community Centre, Cramptons Road, off Otford Road, Sevenoaks TN14 5DN Doors open 7.15pm, meeting starts 8pm. Finishes by 9.30pm. There is a large free car park.

Friday 8 June 2018

Why do we study family history?

Dick Eastman’s Newsletter of 7 June 2018 asked the question ‘Why do we study genealogy?
Genealogy is defined as the direct descent of an individual or group from an ancestor.
It is a simpler question than ‘Why do we study family history’.
Family History I believe is to research not only our lines of descent but also the details of our family members, their occupations, the places they lived and the social influences that affected their lives. It is trying to understand what made them do what they did. One question that crops up as you discover more about them is why they survived to create the generations of our family. They endured war, disease, poverty and occupational injuries. Sometimes they were working with the law and sometimes they appeared on the opposite side or merely as witnesses. Every event creating a record of their existence.
So why do we study family history? It is because:-
  • It is curiosity.
  • It is the search.
  • It is the sense of knowing more about the family than other members of it know.
  • It is the discovery.
  • It is the puzzle as to where to look.
  • It is finding sources that add to the search.
  • It is the discovering characters that you like and wish you had known.
  • It is the discovering characters that you feel you would not have liked, but wish you had known.
  • It is the challenge of a ‘brick wall’ and the joy at demolishing it.
  • It is the history of the place that the family inhabited.
  • It is the history of the country that affected them.
  • It is the journeys they undertook and the reason why they traveled.
  • It is an addiction.
So why do you study family history?

Wednesday 30 May 2018

Fake Pedigrees

‘Genealogy and the medieval historian’ by Michael Maclagan from the paper presented at the 1978 English Genealogy Congress held at St Catherine College, Cambridge.

In a recent workshop at NWKFHS Society Library I explored errors, lies and other misinformation in records found in the commercial and government indexes online. There are also a number of fake pedigrees that are known within the genealogical community such as those written by Gustav Anjou between 1890 and 1942 [Online https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/Fraudulent_Genealogies]. Michael Maclagan mentions a case of someone embellishing their Ancestry. Sir Walter de Norwich d 1329 became Chief Baron of the Exchequer and his son John Admiral North of the Thames became a peer in 1342. The pedigree compiled with supporting forged documents (Maclagan p12 quoting Bodleian MS Top. Gen.c.62 (formerly Phillips 3796)) claims to go back to a companion of William the Conqueror.

Pedigree Collapse

‘Genealogy and the medieval historian’ by Michael Maclagan from the paper presented at the 1978 English Genealogy Congress held at St Catherine College, Cambridge.

If you have any interest in pedigree collapse and that your ancestors may have been related by multiple descent lines, then you will find Michael Maclagan’s paper of interest. He stresses “the wide spread of family connections through the Middle Ages”.
He gives examples of marriages forbidden by canon law that took place either by a clandestine marriage or by papal dispensation. The marriage between relatives has continued since medieval ages as Michael admits to be a child of second cousins.

Sunday 18 March 2018

Bromley meeting 22nd September 2018 now 15th September

Due to an unfortunate sequence of events that were out of our hands, we have had to change the date of our September meeting from Saturday 22nd to Saturday 15th. The venue is the Methodist Church as usual. Meryl Catty will still able to visit us, but we have had to change the title of the talk, as Maureen Binks will be on holiday on the 15th. Meryl’s talk will be 'Our Newspaper Heritage': a light-hearted introduction to the history of the press enlivened with extracts from newspapers, humorous, tragic and macabre as well as the more mundane.