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Latest news from the FHSC

More News from the Family History Federation November Online Event

More speaker and information on the Family History Federation: Really Useful Family History Show on 14th November:


Ask the Experts Announced

FHF are pleased to be able to offer expert advice at the show from a wide range of family history disciplines. A

At the FHF REALLY USEFUL Family History Show advice will be provided by professional genealogists who are members and associates of AGRA (Association of Genealogists and Researchers in Archives) plus information and assistance from specialist family history society members.

They are available to help with questions you may have about resolving research challenges and general assistance on a wide range of family history topics.

Learn more about this service NOW at


More Speakers also announced -

IAN WALLER - The railways were one of the largest employers in the United Kingdom and some of the 900 or so pre 1923 companies have left a legacy of staff records. This talk examines how those records can help piece together the career of a railway worker using a variety of records up to grouping in 1923 and nationalisation in 1948. You may even have railway employees that you did not realise. They also employed merchant seamen, chambermaids and artists! Many of us will have railway navvies amongst our ancestry and these were not employed by the railway companies but by the contractors building the railway network. Part of the talk is devoted to finding their details, Ian's talk is called - On the Right Track – Railway Ancestors

JIM RYAN - This fully illustrated talk will outline Irish Catholic records and the history of their creation and survival. It will detail the format and content of surviving records and where they be accessed. Ireland has historically been a predominantly Catholic country. However, for historical reasons, the earliest Catholic church record is for 1670, and records are sparse until the early 19th century. Nevertheless they are the only evidence of most 18th and 19th century Irish people. It is therefore useful to understand the history of Irish Catholics, and the political and social factors which affected record-keeping. ​The talk will be a comprehensive account of Irish Catholic records and the historical events which affected their creation and survival. It will cover which records survive and what they contain; why the availability of records varies between regions and parishes, and other factors. It also covers where the records may now be accessed; which have been indexed, and other useful background. The talk is titles - Irish Catholic Church Records

EMMA MAXWELL - A look at the sources you will need to begin your Scottish family history research. This presentation will focus on ScotlandsPeople by showing you how to get the best out of the website and how to interpret the records you find. We will also look at some other sources you will need to research your Scottish family tree. This talk is titled -  Beginning Scottish Research 

JEANETTE ROSENBERG - The presentation will cover both UK and overseas resources and will mention specialist Jewish community records and archives and how to find them, Jeanette's talk is called - An introduction to Jewish Genealogy Sources and Resources


Time is running out so why not take advantage of the EARLY BIRD ticket offer.

Don't delay book your ticket today Early Bird ticket Offer valid until midnight (GMT) on 18th October 2020

'A Huge Pack of Witches':
Another FREE online talk from the National Archives 
Fri, 23 October 2020
14:00 – 15:00 BST
'A Huge Pack of Witches': A Witch scare in 17th Century Lancashire
This free online talk is presented by Jess Nelson, National Archives, Head of Collections (Medieval, Early Modern, Maps & Legal).
In November 1633, a little boy telling tall tales about witches in his local community in Lancashire sparked a witch hunt so shocking that no lesser body than the Privy Council decided to investigate.
Records of the examinations, of both the accused and the accuser, are held at The National Archives. Using these and other documents, this talk will tell the story of this witch hunt and set it within the context of witchcraft in the Early Modern period.
For more details and instructions on registration see the following link:
History Day 2020
This event takes place on November 19th
Organised by Senate House Library and the School of Advanced Study
A day of online interactive events for history enthusiasts to explore library, museum, archive & history collections across the UK and beyond.
Over 50 libraries, museums, archives and history organisations across the UK will come together online to take part in talks and share collections and resources.
Come along and join collaborators across the globe to explore new worlds through some of the UK’s most treasured collections and how they are capturing history for the future.
There are three FREE online bookable sessions - see titles and links for each one below, where you can find more details and registration instructions [you can book for all three events or just one from any of the links below, there is a tick box on the form]
10:00 – 11:00:
‘History in the Making: Archiving 2020 for the Future’
14:00 – 15:00:
‘Exploring History in the Digital World’
16:00 – 17:00:
‘New Approaches to Local and Community History: Show and Tell’
Widening Horizons Webinars

Widening Horizons Webinar Series by the Guild of One-Name Studies 

*** this webinar series will launch at 8.00pm [London, UK time] on Wednesday October 7th ***

In place of the planned virtual seminar at Solihull being run jointly by the Guild and the Local Population Studies Society  this will now be a series of weekly ‘tools and techniques’ webinars and features six speakers looking at ways of collecting, analysing and interpreting data collected in the process of one-name or one-place studies, family history or local population analysis.  The data is based mainly on UK records, but records from other countries are cited where appropriate. It will be possible to submit questions for speakers to respond to following each presentation.

The Guild will launch all of these presentations at 8.00pm [London, UK, time] on 6 consecutive Wednesdays starting on October 7th.  You may watch them at any time over the following 14 days (at which time they will be only available to Guild members on the website).

You will need to register to take part in each webinar.  Please go to the seminar webpage - and click on the event you wish to attend to register 

Provisional Programme

20:00 Wednesday Presentations available online
October 7th Mortality and Morbidity: a study of National Registration death certificates for two families 1837 to 2009 – Elizabeth E Green
October 14th One-Place Studies – thinking laterally:  how a one-place study can support surname and population studies – Paul Carter and Pam Smith (Co-founders of ‘Name and Place’)
October 21st Creating a publicly-available common format database of parish register data on baptisms, marriages and burials – Dr Andy Hinde (University of Southampton)
October 28th The Ruby One-Name Collaborative Study: how it worked and what I learned – Dr Nikki Brown
November 4th Looking at single trees and whole orchards: how genealogists and demographers can work together – Dr Eilidh Garrett (University of Cambridge)
November 11th Identifying business proprietors from the census; and using the online Atlas on entrepreneurship – Professor Bob Bennett (University of Cambridge)

After 14 days each presentation  will be only available to Guild members logged into the website.

If you need any further information please email  or telephone the Guild Help Desk on 0800 011 2182.

More FHF Really Useful Show Speakers

The names of the next set of speakers at the FHF REALLY USEFUL Family History Show [14th November 2020] have been released and they are:


Dr Judy Hill - Almshouses originated in early medieval England as places that provided care for the sick poor, usually attached to a monastery. Hospitality a Christian duty. The original focus on travellers and monks was extended in the 12th and 13th centuries to include lay people who were sick or feeble usually housed in separate establishments administered by monks and lay brothers. Church authorities encouraged these foundations and bishops were urged to see there were enough of them to cater for the need. This illustrated talk will look at the history of the British Almshouse which includes the difficult times during the Reformation to the continued vitality of the almshouse movement today. Judy's talk is called -  British Almshouses
Alan Rushton The Gentleman's Magazine was the first monthly journal to appear in Britain. It ran from 1731 until 1922. However, it's only of use to the family historian up to 1868, after which it became a literary magazine. Edward Cave, its originator, invented the obituary as we know it and these have been fully indexed. It was written for the country gentry with their interests in mind, so there is much local history. It's a must for some family historians, but not the place to look for agricultural labourers unless they lived to a great age or murdered people. The talk will show how it can be approached by the family historian, giving examples of the riches it contains in so many areas and is entitled - Gentleman's Magazines as an Aid to Family Historians
Dr Penny Walters - This session will explain how to merge established paper trails with DNA results. The biology and jargon of DNA can be overwhelming and people have had to learn this new branch of genealogy quickly. Through DNA testing, people receive ethnicity estimates, a heritage map, a list of people that DNA ‘matches’ (overlaps) with, and the opportunity to contact them and collaborate if both parties want to. Many people don’t know what to do with all that information, and just focus on their ethnicity result. The advantages and disadvantages of different DNA tests will be explored; a consanguinity chart will be provided; useful information for adopted people will be given; uploading to GEDmatch and utilising the MRCA (most recent common ancestor) information, and triangulation will be explained. Attendees will be shown how to add ‘useful’ DNA matches to their tree to inform a re-structured paper trail. A variety of ethical dilemmas will be outlined during this talk, which is called - Mixing DNA and the Paper Trail
Chris Paton Whilst many of our ancestors fought, and in some cases, died during the First World War, there was another group of people deeply affected by the conflict on the civilian front. Thousands of British and British Empire civilians, present in Europe when war was declared against Germany, were rounded up and interned at a hastily converted racecourse on the outskirts of Berlin from 1914-1918. This talk will look at the fascinating story of those 5500 POWs, including over a thousand merchant seamen, whose only crime was to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. The talk is called - British Civilian POWS in World War One
So Don't Delay - Book your £5 EARLY BIRD TICKET NOW at
With MANY more speakers and exhibitors being announced all the time keep checking back here or to the FHF Really Useful website for more updates.
FYI - the main FHF website can be accessed at the link below -