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Old 05-20-2016, 02:06 PM
 
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I am a black American but have some European genealogy. I have some paternal Irish ancestors who came to America in the early 1800s. I have yet to trace any of my black ancestors to a particular record of importation or immigration but have traced them back to the mid 1700s in Maryland and Pennsylvania. My southern, enslaved ancestors, I have not been able to trace very far just to the 1870 census, but a couple of those ancestors were born in the late 1700s approximately. Also, I have relatives who were from Henry County, VA and who were owned by the Hairston Family, who were a family who owned the largest amount of slaves in the US for a while. In VA and NC they kept very good records, including genealogies of their slaves and so I have records of that line back to 1805, which is earlier than records I have about my Irish ancestors.
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Old 05-22-2016, 04:47 PM
 
Location: too far from the sea
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Difficult Dave View Post
1651 (no other info other than name) Born in Wales, married 5-4-1681 in Newbury, Mass. Complete family tree since then.
I'm sure you must be familiar with this group:

The Sons & Daughters Of The First Settlers of Newbury and go to The Sons & Daughters Of The First Settlers of Newbury

Do you have any of those names? The Newburyport Public Library has a wonderful genealogy room and often there's an expert there to help out. I was going to join this group but got side tracked by some other ancestor. You know how that is.

Other Newbury news is that the old burying ground has now been cleaned up. It was a totally overgrown mess. Some wonderful person took it upon himself to tackle it on his own. I tried to do Find A Grave there one time but couldn't even get in due to the brush and brambles and general overgrown mess. Early Newbury people were usually Puritans from the south of England so it seems unusual that yours was born in Wales. Now you've really got my genealogy curiousity going.
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Old 05-22-2016, 06:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by sirron View Post
While I agree with you that other people's trees can be unreliable, it's possible that some of us who aren't royalty have ancestors that are recorded from a thousand years ago.
I recently found one who fought alongside William the Conqueror at the Battle of Hastings. His loyalty earned him property, and he is mentioned in the Domesday Book. The spelling has changed of course, but I believe the connection is legitimate.
Whre did you find birth records from that far back? I know spellings change, but with no dates to confirm that two different names are the same person, how can you trust it?
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Old 05-22-2016, 08:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by WildColonialGirl View Post
Whre did you find birth records from that far back? I know spellings change, but with no dates to confirm that two different names are the same person, how can you trust it?

They are referring to nobility and wealthy land owner genealogy in England and Europe. Many records were left for many of them and centuries of genealogies have been developed. There are modern experts who meticulously go through medieval genealogical records to cross reference them and identify the lineages that can be identified accurately.

They kept quite a bit of paperwork for the wealthy and the nobility, land taxes, fees, oaths of allegiance, inheritance, wills, probate records, legal records, etc ... Everyone in the system at that level had an interest in tracking these things, for the crown to properly tax and assess the wealth of a noble or landed gentry and vice-verse so said noble or landed gentry could inherit various wealth (including land, which creates a strong path to follow where you can match names to heirs, heiresses, etc.
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Old 05-22-2016, 08:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Alandros View Post
They are referring to nobility and wealthy land owner genealogy in England and Europe. Many records were left for many of them and centuries of genealogies have been developed. There are modern experts who meticulously go through medieval genealogical records to cross reference them and identify the lineages that can be identified accurately.

They kept quite a bit of paperwork for the wealthy and the nobility, land taxes, fees, oaths of allegiance, inheritance, wills, probate records, legal records, etc ... Everyone in the system at that level had an interest in tracking these things, for the crown to properly tax and assess the wealth of a noble or landed gentry and vice-verse so said noble or landed gentry could inherit various wealth (including land, which creates a strong path to follow where you can match names to heirs, heiresses, etc.
To add, for context, I can trace my ancestry via a single gateway ancestor fairly confidently to 11 of the proven companions of William the Conqueror who accompanied him at the Battle of Hastings. Including of course William the Conqueror himself.

It's important to note that these companions of William the Conqueror were far from commoners, these were high ranking soldiers, land owners, nobles already, friends, family, etc. The typical "grunt" soldier was no recorded and didn't get grand land grants and titles in England after it was conquered.
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Old 05-22-2016, 08:42 PM
 
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Sirron specifically said the trail is not through nobility. I'm interested in how people get through the godawful maze of English bad records and repetitive names (William and Thomas and Henry and Charles forever, everywhere!) and common surnmes and relatively mobile people. Give me French records any day!

Last edited by WildColonialGirl; 05-22-2016 at 09:04 PM..
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Old 05-22-2016, 09:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by WildColonialGirl View Post
Sirron specifically said the trail is not through nobility. I'm interested in how people get through the godawful maze of English bad records and repetitive names (srsly, people, you could at least reliably alternate William and Henry). Give me French records any day!
Nope, he only mentioned it wasn't royalty:

Quote:
it's possible that some of us who aren't royalty have ancestors that are recorded from a thousand years ago.
I recently found one who fought alongside William the Conqueror at the Battle of Hastings. His loyalty earned him property, and he is mentioned in the Domesday Book
As he mentioned he was given property and is mentioned in the Domesday Book, at minimum he became a wealthy land owner and those that were given significant land or titles weren't commoners before coming over, at minimum they already were in some sort of privileged position when coming over to be then rewarded.

For context there are roughly only 20 confirmed known "Companions" of William the Conqueror at the Battle of Hastings:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compan..._the_Conqueror

Keep in mind we only known roughly 20 or so despite there being anywhere from 7,000 - 12,000 soldiers that came. If you go down the list you will notice the trend of the people that are known are very notable people, many improved their positions greatly after the Battle of Hastings, but all came from some level of notability before that.
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Old 05-22-2016, 09:13 PM
 
859 posts, read 750,587 times
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Originally Posted by WildColonialGirl View Post
I'm interested in how people get through the godawful maze of English bad records and repetitive names (William and Thomas and Henry and Charles forever, everywhere!) and common surnmes and relatively mobile people.
To respond to this statement specifically, I think it's often nearly impossible. That's why most ancestors traced to England dead end there (despite some of these gateway ancestors), at least with any confidence... unless they owned land and both records survived and you happen to locate those records then it really is nearly impossible. Unfortunately this is where bad genealogy happens, usually a fairly common ancestor will end with someone, let's say "John Smith", probably baptismal or christening records... then someone will link them to some noble or land owning family saying John Smith was a son of Robert Smith because some Visitation record shows Robert Smith has an unaccounted for son John Smith (usually ignored the fact that there are many common person Smith surnamed families in which the problem you specifically identify arises).
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Old 05-24-2016, 04:15 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Alandros View Post
To respond to this statement specifically, I think it's often nearly impossible. That's why most ancestors traced to England dead end there (despite some of these gateway ancestors), at least with any confidence... unless they owned land and both records survived and you happen to locate those records then it really is nearly impossible. Unfortunately this is where bad genealogy happens, usually a fairly common ancestor will end with someone, let's say "John Smith", probably baptismal or christening records... then someone will link them to some noble or land owning family saying John Smith was a son of Robert Smith because some Visitation record shows Robert Smith has an unaccounted for son John Smith (usually ignored the fact that there are many common person Smith surnamed families in which the problem you specifically identify arises).
I must say I was very surprised, you'd expect the language barrier to make countries other than the UK or Ireland much more difficult, but that's not the case at all. Even with a single name study website to assist me the trail is lost very very quickly.
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Old 10-11-2016, 02:57 PM
 
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One of my family members traced our family to the 900's A.D.
-WT
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