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Sarah’s T p Tip

Find your family in the index usually at the back of manorial documents at the back of manorial documents

If, like me, you were excited to see that

If, like me, you were excited to see that FamilySearch (famil h

FamilySearch ( is adding digitised manorial records to its collection (page 30), don’t be put off by the fact that they are ‘browse only’. Many manorial documents contain a basic surname index at the back. So you can scroll to the end and look for family names, and quickly see if the record is relevant to your research.

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When I first started exploring my family’s history, I had no idea that I had any Irish roots, but digging back five g t c w N th in it H w generations took me to County Wicklow. Only then did I lament the lack of 19th-century census records that we take for granted when researching British ancestors. As Nicola’s excellent article on page 17 shows, the fire that destroyed so many Irish records in 1922 wasn’t the sole reason for the lack of census records, but it has certainly played a part in making Irish research challenging. Hopefully the exciting work done by the Beyond 2022 digital project will help more of us explore our Irish heritage.

Of course, it’s not just Irish research that is tricky. Anything before the introduction of civil registration can lead to uncertain paths and missing records. That’s one of the reasons I like manorial records so much (page 30), because they stretch back hundreds of years and can help you to confirm relationships.

I also enjoyed Caroline Roope’s article on hop picking (page 60). I suspect that many of us will have family who picked hops as part of their holiday. As we queue at airports this summer, let’s think of our forebears working in the sun and rain. I’m not sure which I’d prefer.

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Finally, if you don’t follow us yet on Facebook or Twitter, do try it out. It’s a great way to connect with us. Happy hunting!

Sarah Williams Editor


Nicola Morris Nicola is the co-founder and director of Irish genealogy company Timeline. On page 17 she talks about what the Beyond 2022 project means for the future of Irish research.

Ian Waller Although Ian has retired as a professional genealogist, he is still very active on the scene. He is the author of Introducing Manorial Records and shares his expertise on page 30.

Paul Blake A regular contributor, Paul is a professional genealogist and member of AGRA based in London. On page 44 he explains how to use rate books to grow your tree.


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