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Who Do You Think You Are? Who Do You Think You Are?

Who Do You Think You Are?

April 2019

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine not only explores the stories behind the popular BBC genealogy TV series, but also helps you uncover your own roots. Each issue is packed with practical advice to help you track down family history archives and get the most out of online resources, alongside features on what life was like in the past and the historic events that affected our ancestors.

United Kingdom
Immediate Media Company London Limited
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13 Issues


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Wow! I can hardly believe it, but this is our 150th issue of WDYTYA? Magazine. I remember in 2007 when the magazine was just a twinkle in my eye, and now we are one of the world’s bestselling family history titles. Thank you to everyone who has supported us on this journey, and a special thank you to readers who have been with us since the first issue. Thank you also to all of the editorial staff and writers I have worked with over the years. I’m looking forward to the next 150 issues!I also want to thank everyone who took part in our third Transcription Tuesday event. It was a great success, with an entire book transcribed in a day. You can read more about it on page…

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LAURA BERRYWith over 10 years’ experience as a genealogist on WDYTYA? Laura has seen more than her fair share of parish registers. She explains what you can find online on page 16. EMMA JOLLYEmma is a frequent contributor to our Q&A pages and has written four books on genealogy. Although she specialises in British India, this month she explores her Jewish roots on page 26. BRIAN ELLIOTTBrian has written many books on local and regional history, and explores coal mining on page 59. It’s a topic he’s particularly interested in, because he has coal miners in his family. GETTY IMAGES / CHILDREN AT THE ALEXANDER ORPHANAGE IN HORNSEY, 1941…

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a gift from the past

An example of one of Ambrose Pimlowe’s incredibly detailed entries in the parish records for Great Dunham I was interested in your answer to the question ‘What is the difference between genealogy and family history?’ (Q&A, February). While searching for a burial in the 1700s in Great Dunham, Norfolk, I found entries by the rector, Ambrose Pimlowe, who did not confine himself to simply recording dates and names but got carried away in the detail, unwittingly providing future generations with valuable insight into the life of the times. For example, here is one of his entries:“1738 John Hun, an ancient pauper of almost ninety-three years, a native of Norwich who settled in this town, who could walk twenty miles with more ease and less fatigue than hundreds of twenty…

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SAME MISTAKE, DIFFERENT WEBSITESIn your article ‘Break down your brick walls’ (March) you make the good point that you shouldn’t rely on the same website all the time. This is certainly true for most transcriptions, but your readers should be aware that for the 1881 census at least three of the major sites obtained their transcriptions from the same source. One of my ancestors, George Twite of Gooderstone in Norfolk, is incorrectly transcribed as George Tarto of Gooderston on Ancestry, Findmypast and FamilySearch (which I think is the original source). TheGenealogist, however, has him correctly recorded, so it looks as though they have used a different transcription. It would be useful if you could publish any other cases where sites get their census data from the same source, so…

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volunteers score transcription triumph

Members of the WDYTYA? Magazine team, led by Sarah Williams (centre), fuelled up on cake to power through Transcription Tuesday (ROBBIE BENNIE) Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine’s third annual Transcription Tuesday event was a great success, marking the first time our volunteers have transcribed a whole book in a single day.For Transcription Tuesday 2019, we teamed up with the Railway Work, Life and Death project (railwayaccidents.port.ac.uk) to transcribe a 119-page book of railway worker accident records, created by the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants and spanning 1901–1905.On 5 February, WDYTYA? Magazine readers and other volunteers from around the world gave up their time to take part, using Google Spreadsheets to transcribe the records from their home computers.In total, they transcribed the entire book and a number…

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london poor law hospital records indexed on ancestry

This record from the City of London Union Infirmary is one of half a million Poor Law hospital records that have been indexed by Ancestry Family history website Ancestry (ancestry.co.uk) has indexed more than 500,000 records showing how London’s poor sought medical treatment in the 19th and early 20th centuries.The collection, ‘London, England, Poor Law Hospital Admissions and Discharges, 1842–1918’, consists of digitised records that were previously available in Ancestry’s browse-only London records. They have now been indexed, making it easier for Ancestry subscribers to find family in them. The 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act created the Victorian system of workhouses. It was thought that they needed to provide accommodation for the destitute while also being so uncomfortable that people would not choose to go there rather than work.However,…