Parental Advice

I’m not sure how old I was when my father warned me about a mutual acquaintance. “He will lie and look at you.”

Anthony S. Fauci, MD, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said there is “no doubt” Donald J. Trump will be confronted with a surprise infectious disease outbreak during his presidency.

Healio: Infectious Disease News, January 11 2017


TruNews, 13 April 2020 Segment starts at 1:23:12

168px-Singapore_road_sign_-_Warning_-_Merge.svgThe manoeuvre on FamilySearch has become so much easier in the last couple of days – just in time to make the banishing of eleven Janes relatively painless. I was surprised that the majority were “Not a Match”, having been generated by christening sources for the Welburn children of Jane MILLINGTON. I have left this Jane ARTLEY for someone else to dispose of (and merge all HER dupes).

Jane ARTLEY christened January 23, 1815, at Burton Fleming near Bridlington, daughter of Robert (a farmer) and Mary. Married John TEMPLE in Scarborough, 1 October 1850. Both aged 34.

Sign credit: Government of Singapore – Land Transport Authority / Public domain

Townscape 53 · 199 Steps


Difficult Births, Problem Children

I mentioned a while ago that the discovery of the GRO Online Index had changed my research life. No more waiting until 1911 for Free BMD to begin offering the maiden surnames of mothers.

Taking a break from Filey people, I looked at some of my own folk a few days ago. I have two grandaunts, Annie and Daisy ELSOM, who married fellows called WARD. Charles Edward was born in 1882 and Dick in 1889, both in Hull. But, like the STORMs mentioned a few days ago, they were not related by blood.

Dick was the son of William Edward WARD and Lizzie King HODSON and the GRO Index readily served him up with eight siblings.

Lizzie’s birth family is a different story. I will try to keep this simple. A composite picture of the HODSONs can be stitched together from the three censuses – 1861 to 1881. There are eight children born to Henry Hawkesley HODSON and Elizabeth King HANN. A ninth, Emma, is revealed by the GRO Index to have arrived and departed midway between 1861 and 1871. There is a cuckoo in the nest in 1861 – Henry’s 9-year-old stepson “George J. DRUMMEY”, who subsequently disappears, possibly into the navy and across the pond to the United States.


The Census gives George’s birthplace as “Baston”, Lincolnshire. The GRO records him as George DEVANNEY, born December Qtr 1851 in Glanford Brigg, Mother’s Maiden Surname “KINGHAN”. (Barton upon Humber is in that registration district.) Elizabeth King HANN had married John DEVANNEY in Hull the previous year.

I have been unable to find a record of John’s death, but Elizabeth DEVANNEY marries Henry HODSON in Hull in 1860. A few months later they are at 3, John’s Place, St Mary Sculcoates, with George and three HODSON children – Ann Mary (age 5), Maria (3) and Harriet (0); mother’s maiden name for all three is HANN. Was Henry their father?

Lizzie King HODSON is the next child to happen along, in late 1863; birth registered in Driffield to mother DEVANNEY.


1865, Emma (KING)

1866, Charles (KING)

1868, Annie Helen (HANN)

1870, Harry (KING)

1873, Ada (DEVANNEY)

So, Elizabeth offered her maiden surname to the registrar for just four of her ten children (plus KINGHAN). Why she would give her first married name when registering her last child is a puzzle. Or at least it was until I dipped into Mark D. Herber’s Ancestral Trails and discovered that it wasn’t “a duty”  for those present at a birth to report it to a registrar at all until almost forty years after the civil registration system was established.  Hardly surprising, then, that in some parts of the country  15% of births were not registered between 1837 and 1875. (Neither was a registrar entitled to request sight of a marriage certificate or license.)

Parents misdirecting registrars in this way is a bit annoying – and it has a curious effect on Find My Past’s ability to deliver useful Hints. FamilySearch isn’t knocked out of its hint stride but there is some explaining to do when adding GRO sources to the World Tree. It took me the better part of two days to set up the Hodsons and Wards who were brought into my fold by grandaunt Daisy.

Elizabeth King HANN was already on FST but I had to create records for most of her children and WARD grandchildren. Other than Dick and Daisy’s son Reginald none of these people are related to me by blood, but I persevered because my headmistress at Stoneferry Junior & Infants in the 1950s was a Hodson, and a fellow pupil one Maurice Devanney, so I hoped to make connections! (I haven’t, yet.)

A Powell Workout


I spent three hours this morning trying to make the POWELL family presentable on FamilySearch (see Sunday’s post). I wasn’t too rigorous about logging the tasks done but, roughly, 5 children were added to the parents marriage record, about 20 new vital record sources or FST Hints added/attached, 8 duplicate records removed by merging. All told I  made about 41 changes, including the addition of two “Memories” – the photograph of Constable POLLARD and a PDF of Sunday’s post.

Each “change” took an average of five minutes (rounded up). I’ll leave you to decide if it appears to be time well spent! I didn’t find the work a chore and therefore encourage anyone reading this to add some information to FST’s Tree of Family Knowledge. Each small contribution may be appreciated by someone, sometime. And ridding a family of duplicate records is oddly satisfying.

There are a few additions I could yet make – records for John James’ parents, George William and Catherine nee PEEBLES, three Census records and the 1902 marriage of Ada Catherine to Arthur EVANS in Caldecot, Monmouthshire. I would also like to find out what happened to Jack and Elizabeth. (I have left the purple signpost icons in the parents’ “boxes” – a gentle warning that there may be missing children.) I should also add John James and his family to the Looking at Filey Wiki.