Sir Robert Beachcroft (1650 – 1721)

Robert Beachcroft was baptised at All Saints Church, Derby on 28th April 1650 the second son and fourth child of Daniel Beachcroft, maltster and farmer, and Mary Fox or Skelton.  His father Daniel was wealthy enough to support many children and to apprentice three of his sons to London merchants and send the eldest to… Continue reading Sir Robert Beachcroft (1650 – 1721)

The best family history advice I never had

Do you remember the defining moments when suddenly something clicked into place, or you learned something the hard way without reading about it or attending a class?   I can count the following seven “aha” moments as some of my best learning experiences. 1. Don’t skip on collecting all relevant information.  When I joined the Society… Continue reading The best family history advice I never had

Stray Thoughts on the English census

Not that long ago, the large microfilm room at The Family Record Centre in London (God rest its soul) was humming with conversation and the clacker of the census films being wound forward or back.  The 1881 census was the first to be surname indexed, (which took a large team of volunteers under the supervision… Continue reading Stray Thoughts on the English census

It’s there, but not online

Are you in a situation where you are certain you have examined or found all possible records online and your research is now stuck? There is no need to be despondent or to give up.  What you need is available but is simply not online.  In fact, not even half of what you could be… Continue reading It’s there, but not online

Playing the elimination game

Which John Smith is mine? This article deals with the common problem of having too many candidates to choose from.  How do you separate out this John Smith from that John Smith?  Unfortunately, people in the past chose first names from a limited range, so it is possible to have three or even four men… Continue reading Playing the elimination game

Nuts and Bolts review

Andrew Todd, Family History Nuts and Bolts Problem Solving through Family Reconstitution Techniques (Allen and Todd, 2015) I was delighted to know that this useful little book had been re-issued in 2015 as I had been recommending the previous edition to my students for years.  The newer edition is nearly doubled in size and well… Continue reading Nuts and Bolts review

Escape from the French in 1809

My transcription from a contemporary copy, originally in the possession of my distant cousin Mary Beachcroft, and now perhaps in the Beachcroft collection at the Clothworker’s Company.  It is an account of an escape from France in 1809 by a group of English prisoners and was brought back to England by Henry Lewis, brother to… Continue reading Escape from the French in 1809

A love match or simply good business?

Like anyone else, I have a lot of puzzles to work on in my family tree.  One that had been nagging at me for some time was the precise blood relationship between a Joseph Beachcroft who married a Mary Beachcroft.   Mary’s father was Samuel Beachcroft and in his will of 1732 he mentions his ‘son… Continue reading A love match or simply good business?