Geoffs Genealogy Update 5 November 2014

By far the biggest event in the lives of my family during October – indeed, during the year – was the marriage of our son – Owen – to Nikki. This really was a fantastic day and evening at Rowton Castle Hotel, near Shrewsbury, and I’m sure that a good time was had by all who attended. It was so lovely to get together with relations, and meet some of Nikki and Owen’s friends in lovely surroundings, and the occasion and the wedding location made me reflect on marriage over the centuries.

Owen and Vikki’s was a civil marriage, which took place in an hotel, reflecting the fact that in recent years there has been a great increase in the variety of venues and venue types that are licensed marriage venues. Throughout the period 1600 to 1836, with the exception of a few years during the interregnum, marriages were required to be carried out in accordance with Canon law, laid down by the Church of England. This meant that marriage ceremonies had to be carried out by a minister of the Church of England. Yes, there were marriages carried out by dissenting ministers, but these were not recognised by the law and so, as Rebecca Probert explains in her excellent book Marriage Law for Genealogists, it was almost always the case that our ancestors in the period up to 1836 were married in the Church of England, even if they were non conformists.

The calling of Banns before marriage was introduced in the Church of England in 1604, with the alternative of marriage by Licence, but Probert emphasises that marriages were valid without banns or a licence, so long as they were carried out by a minister of the Church of England (Probert, p 76). Hence the growth in the number of so called clandestine marriages. During our research into the Bankes Pedigree we have found a number of examples of Clandestine marriages, for example John Price (abt 1720 – abt 1756) married Deborah Rand (abt 1722 – abt 1765) in London’s Fleet Prison in 1745.

Between 1653 and 1660, during the Interregnum, a system of civil marriage was in force. As you may imagine, this ruffled the feathers of many people who were committed to the Church, so there were also church marriages carried out. Although not recognised at the time, these marriages were recognised in law after the Restoration.

As most genealogists are probably aware, in 1753 Hardwicke’s Clandestine Marriages Act came into force, aimed at stopping the growing practice of clandestine marriage. This  legislation laid down that to be valid a marriage had to be celebrated by an Anglican minister in an Anglican church, after the calling of Banns or a Licence. There were also rules introduced that governed the records that needed to be kept, and these rules established the layout of the marriage records that we now use in our research.

In 1837 Civil Registration was introduced in England and Wales. Church of England clergymen were required to send a return of marriages in their church to their local registrar every three months, and the local registrar sent copies to the General Registrar. This resulted in the certificates and indexes that we use in our research today. In addition to this, the Act made it possible for people to marry in civil marriage ceremonies at register offices. This ceremony was shorn of the religious content, and thus offered Catholics and Non Conformists the option of marrying legally without going through a ceremony in the Church of England. Additionally, after 1837 a growing number of dissenting chapels and Catholic churches or chapels were licenced to carry our marriages.

Many of my Culshaw forebears were Catholics, but up to 1837, so far as I have been able to trace, they married in the Church of England. It is possible that, in keeping with a practice that was common prior to 1837, they had two weddings – one in the Catholic church and another in the Anglican church, but I have seen little evidence of that. It took me a number of years to trace the marriage of my  great grandparents John Culshaw (1855-1924) and Elizabeth Bennett (1853-1931), and I eventually found it in the local Civil Registration records, using the Lancashire BMD website. John and Elizabeth were both Catholics, and were married in 1875 at St Andrew’s Catholic Chapel in Leyland, Lancashire.

I have found time for one or two bits of treeing during the month, but most of October has been spent editing wedding photos and getting the autumn gardening done. I think I’ll save the bits of treeing news for next month’s post.


  • This page was last updated on Wednesday November 5th, 2014.

Geoffs Genealogy Update 5 July 2014

In the available time during the past month I have focussed my research on my Culshaw and Hewitt families. I had not updated my records to include the material I found when we visited Preston last September, so I rectified that oversight by updating my Culshaws. When we next upload the tree to Geoffs Geneaolgy you will be able to see that after the death of hsi first wife on 24 February 1897 James did not waste any time in finding a replacement for her. On 1 August 1898 at Holy Trinity, Tarleton, he married Betty Iddon (b 1832), a widow of Tarleton. I have found a death entry in the Lancashire Civil Registration database on the Lancashire BMD website that suggests that Betty porobably died in 1914, but I cannot be certain that this was “our” Betty. Certainly she was not buried in the same grave as James, at St Paul, Farington.

James Culshaw (1834-1923)  lived most of his life in Farington, just a few miles south of Preston, in Lancashire. His first marriage – to Margaret Bradshaw (c1831-1897) produced no less than thirteen children, including my great grandfather, John Culshaw (1855-1924). John was a staunch Roman Catholic, and lived all his live in the Farington area.

The development of Farington as a small town was based on two industries that were thriving in the mid nineteenth century – the cotton mill and the railway, and when we look at the wictorian censuses we cans ee that most of the working people in the locality worked in one of these industries. The local cotton mill – owned by Bashall & Boardman – was the biggest employer in Farington, and the dependancy of the local people on the mill owners is emphasised by the fact that many of them lived in houses that were built by the mill owners for their employees to live in. Mill Street is probably the best example of this.

Census entries over the period 1881 – 1901 show that James Culshaw was employed as a Platelayer on the railway which, as I mentioned in my post of 4 July 2014 in relation to Charles Hewitt, was a very responsible job. He had retired by the time of the 1911 census.

About twenty years ago I made many research trips to Preston, to investigate my Lancashire roots. I visited a number of the graveyards in which my forebears were buried, and photographed their gravestones whenever possible. Of course, in those days we were not using digital cameras such as are available today; the photographs had to be developed and printed, whereas these days we can store the images on a computer or memory stick, and only print the ones that we particularly want.

Last year I decided to obtain digital images of these photographs wherever I can, and to that end when I went to Preston last September I re-photographed the relevant  graves at St Paul, Farington and at St Mary (RC), Bamber Bridge. I was able to add to the collection of digital images a couple of weeks ago, when travelling home after a holiday in Cumbria. We stopped off en route at St Andrew, Leyland, and spent a couple of hours in the graveyard.  I managed to obtain new images for most of the graves we had visited all those years ago, but there was one notable exception. To my immense disappointment the grass has covered the grave of my 4 x great grandfather Thomas Culshaw the wheelwright (1788 – 1864), and we could not remember its location precisely enough to enable us to find and uncover it. I recall that when we found it all those years ago it was almost entirely covered by grass, and it was found by our eagle-eyed daughter, who spotted the few letters on the stone that were exposed. We had to clear the grass off the stone to reveal the inscription. Since our last visit nature has taken its course, and we need to find the precise location of the grave to enable us to expose it again. In the meantime, I shall have to dig out the old photograph, and scan it for posterity.

  • This page was last updated on Sunday July 6th, 2014.

Geoffs Genealogy Update 5th January 2012

I’m a few days late with this blog entry, the result of a very merry Christmas & New Year holiday. I hope that you, also, had a good break, and that 2012 is good to you.

Looking back over the past year, although it was obviously a lousy year in economic terms for most people in the UK, for me in many respects it was pretty good. We enjoyed two lovely European holidays with some splendid weather, super food, good company and wonderful country. We also had a number of very enjoyable short weekend breaks, and had the excitement of our niece’s wedding. On top of all that, we had the excitement of the Bankes Descendants Reunion in June. What a thrill that was.  All this plus a number of visits to various theatres or concert halls, where we enjoyed some wonderful performances. No complaints from me about 2011!

Mention of the Bankes Reunion leads me to draw your attention to the recently added section on this website, that is devoted to that subject. Here you will find transcriptions of the three talks that were given, plus a selection of photographs taken by attendees. I hope you will find this interesting.

For those of you who heard Helen’s super talk on Robert Hanham Collyer (1814- abt 1891) at the reunion you may be interested to know that recently even more information has come to light about this talented but flawed individual. Not only does the new British Library Newspapers website contain a number of articles that report on various of his exploits, but Helen has recently found some new sources as well. As is the case with all subjects, extra information is being placed in cyberspace all the time, so it is always worthwhile to keep re-searching for information on your chosen topic. In fact, not only this is true of the internet generally, but also of individual websites. For instance, the content on the British Library Newspapers site is being added to daily on a huge scale. I shall certainly be re-visiting it time and again.

Apart from the Robert Hanham Collyer finds, Helen’s initial sweep of this site brought forth quite a number of articles that are of great interest to us.

There is, for instance, the case of Joseph Culshaw, a Lancashire man who had befriended three local lads and invited them into his house for a friendly chat in Leyland in 1887. Just why, I wonder, did he suddenly take his gun off the wall and start shooting at his visitors as they made a hasty retreat?

We’re not sure that Joseph was “one of ours”, but superficially it seems quite likely.

Then there was Barney Sayer, who was in court in East Anglia in 1891 because he had assaulted an assistant schoolmaster. He was fined 20 shillings plus 9 shillings costs, or 14 days imprisonment with hard labour.

I don’t want to give you the impression that our forebears were all violent people, but I can’t deny that this type of detail adds to our research immensely. Isn’t it funny how most of us would steer clear of most kinds of trouble, but we usually start licking our lips when we find an ancestor who had some juicyskeletons in their cupboard?

We have become aware aware that a problem has arisen with the family tree  on the Geoff Genealogy website. For some reason the data appears to have become corrupted, and unfortunately it cannot necessarily be assumed to be correct. In fact quite a lot of the dates that are you will find are not correct. Our apologies for this.

Fortunately in our family there are some people who are far cleverer than I, and  this situation will be rectified. It may be a while before this can be done, however, and in the meantime if you find that the data you are seeing  on our website does not make sense feel free to contact me, and I will try to help you.

  • This page was last updated on Thursday January 5th, 2012.

Geoff’ Genealogy Update 28 April 2008

Since my last blog entry I’ve been as busy as ever. Lots of new information has come to light, partly through new contacts made via Geoffs Genealogy and partly through contacts made via the Genes Reunited website.

My Culshaw research has been sadly neglected for a few years now, which is a shame, because I have made some wonderful friends in Lancashire during my work on this line, and also thoroughly enjoyed carrying out the research in places like Preston, Leyland and Ormskirk.

The truth is, I’m stuck, and have been for some years!

If anybody can tell me who were the parents of John Culshaw, born c1760, probably at Burscough, I’ll be very grateful. I have searched as many Lancashire Wills as I have been able to, looked at some of the estate papers for the Earl of Derby’s estate, and looked at as many parish registers as seem relevant, but the problem really is that there was more than one John Culshaw who came into the world at about that time, in the Ormskirk area, and I can’t say which one was my ancestor.

Anyway, I made contact with Valerie, a Culshaw researcher who is registered with Genes Reunited. It turns out that Culshaw is not her main research interest, and her Culshaws are on the line I call the “Catholic Culshaws”. This is to distinguish them from my forebears, some of whom were catholics, but most of whom were not.

The “Catholic Culshaws” have long attracted our interest because their lives seem to run parallel to my forebears. On the 1841 census for Farington the two households were living very near to one another, and they continued to live close to one another for most of the nineteenth century. Our belief has always been that there is very likely to be a link between the two families, but we have not yet found it. If there was a link, it must be pre 1760.

Anyway, it was good to exchange trees with Valerie, and to make one another aware of our respective interests. Who knows, one day we may be able to link up our trees!

Another Genes Reunited contact was on the Hewitt line. In his Hawkridge tree Arthur has a certain Charlotte Hewitt, born Ardwick, Manchester in 1858. She was a sister of my great grandfather – Arthur Thomas Hewitt (1852-1915). I knew she had married a certain George Pratt in 1878 and that he had died before the date of the 1881 census, in April 1881. What I didn’t know was that she then married John Frederick Hawkridge (b 1851 at Derby) with whom she produced four children. This intelligence set me off researching this clan, and I traced the births of their children and also the available relevant census entries (1891 & 1901). I also traced some army service papers re one of the sons of John and Charlotte – Thomas Hawkridge (b 1890).

Arthur lives in the USA, and has a most impressive Hawkridge pedigree.

These examples point up the benefit that can be gained from websites such as Genes Reunited. I don’t keep up my membership long term, preferring to pay for a short term membership every now and again, but there is no doubt that the network of researchers on GR has grown a lot since I was last a member, a few years ago.

Among recent visitors to Geoffs Genealogy was Ronnie, my recently acquired contact in the USA. He is descended on the Clements line. Emily Jeans Clements features in the Bankes pedigree because she married Robert Hanham Collyer as a 16 year old girl in London in 1864. He was aged 50 at the time, and already married! After the couple had produced two children Emily evidently realised that her spouse’s first wife was still alive, and sued for divorce – a very rare event in 1873. Anyway, the marriage was annulled in London. Robert Hanham Collyer said at the hearing that he had not heard from his wife for many years, and had believed her dead. I assume that this explanation was accepted by the court, because he was not imprisoned for bigamy. My last sighting of Emily in the records was on the 1881 census, when she was living at Camberwell, Surrey, with her two children, aged 15 & 14. I don’t know what became of her after that. Her daughter, another Emily, married William Sleigh (I wrote about this marriage in this blog a year ago). I don’t know what happened to the son – Robert L Collyer, who was born in France c1867.

Ronnie is descended from one of Emily’s siblings, and has provided me with a wealth of material about the Clements family, including some lovely photographs. Obviously, the Clements line is not of direct relevance to the Banks pedigree, but I’m always delighted to receive information such as this, as apart from its intrinsic interest, it helps to put the characters who married into the Bankes descendants’ lines into their context.

Thank you Ronnie.

As if all that were not enough I’ve also had very enjoyable contact with Bankes descendants who are descended on the Welsh line from Joseph Rand, half brother of Bankes. I’ve long taken a great interest in the Welsh line, for a number of reasons. Firstly, Jan & I visit Carmarthenshire quite often, so are able to use the relevant local records quite easily. Secondly, this branch of the pedigree has within it a lot of very interesting people. On the whole they were quite prosperous people, so they have left behind them a decent quantity of records. Finally, my interest has been kept up by the fact that I have had the pleasure of meeting some of the people descended on the Welsh branch – and very pleasant people they have proved.

It has long been my aim to add a section on these Welsh Bankes descendants to Geoffs Genealogy, but as yet that ambition remains unfulfilled. So much to do, and so little time in which to do it. Still, hope springs eternal …..

  • This page was last updated on Monday April 28th, 2008.

Geoffs Genealogy Update 17 February 2008

Hello again.

I visited London last Tuesday, with my daughter Helen. Helen was on a business trip, and I was treeing, so we travelled down from Wolverhampton early in the morning then went our separate ways, meeting up again in the afternoon.

I had never before visited the offices of HM Courts Service at First Avenue House, Holborn, so I decided to use this occasion to rectify this omission. As is my wont, I took with me a lengthy list of items to research. I always set myself far too many tasks on these trips, but at least I never run out of things to do!

The system in operation at this venue is very simple. There are a series of racks containing quite large books. These contain the probate calendars, which list and summarise the Wills and Administrations dealt with by HMCR. They date from 1858, when the Church Courts ceased to deal with probates, to about 1995. There are a number of books for each year, and each year is split alphabetically. You simply find the book you need and look for the entry that interests you. If you find it you will probably want to annotate the details of the entry, but if you wish you can order a copy of the document. I ordered copies of three wills, which will take about a week to arrive by post, and cost me £5.00 each. It is also possible to obtain a copy will one hour after ordering it.

If you want to order a copy of a Will you need to complete a simple form and take the relevant calendar to an official, who checks that you have completed your application correctly. You then pay your money to a cashier, who takes your order for processing.

I imagine you are all agog, wanting to know whether I found anything of great interest. Well, in my three hours stay I managed to cover about 3/4 of my list. I’ll mention a few.

As I expected, my poor old Smith forebears do not appear to have left wills – not even my mum’s uncle Jim – James Archer Smith – who had his own businesses and was said by members of the family to have been quite prosperous.

I did have quite a number of successes, however. Ralph Hewitt (d. 1938) left a will, as did Caleb Oliver and his wife Alicia Blandina, who died in 1879 and 1897 respectively. Alicia was the daughter of Samuel William Archer (1790-1870).

I found records of the wills of Hannah Archer (1818-1904) and her brother Samuel Archer (1822-1889). I also was able to trace the probates relating to children of Thomas Hunt (1798-1897) and his wife Martha Mary Colam (1808-1861). They were Matilda Hunt (1831-1908), Esther Maria Hunt (1833-1911)

The most surprising information I found was contained in the probate calendar entry for Ann Maria (Holt) Heppell (c1817-1886), the widow of Richard Bryan Heppell (1812-1861). Her son and only next of kin was Richard William George Heppell, who was said to be living in Dunkirk, Chautauqua County, New York, USA. No wonder I had not traced his death in the UK records! I may be able to find him in the USA censuses online at Ancestry.

You can find all the above people in the family tree section of Geoff’s Genealogy.

Oh! I nearly forgot to tell you what the calendar entries actually tell us. Well, they follow a pretty set format, and basically tell us the name of the deceased, his or her address, the date and location of the death, the date and location of probate or admons, the name of the person to whom probate was granted and the value of the estate. In my experience, many of these entries contain as much information as the full will – but not always.

You can see these calendars on microfiche at many libraries or records offices in England and Wales, but the records at First Avenue House are more up to date, so if you want to see a record relating to more recent probate you will need to go there.

I spent the rest of the day at the revamped London Metropolitan Archives. I may tell you about that next time.

Good hunting.

  • This page was last updated on Sunday February 17th, 2008.

Geoffs Genealogy Website Updates – 13 January 2008

Last Sunday Helen and I put a series of updates on to the Geoffs Genealogywebsite, as the latest stage of our ongoing updating process. Over the past few weeks I have been through all the pages of text on the site and amended them so that they are up to date as of now. In most cases this has involved the correction of a few errors (typos mainly), the addition of an odd sentence or paragraph of text, the changing or addition of a date here and there, and appropriate additions to the references pages.

In the case of the webpage Arthur Ackland Hunt – Artist the changes made are quite significant. Firstly, courtesy of Richard Bradley, I am able to share with you two wonderful photographs – of Arthur Ackland Hunt and his wife – Emma Sarah Blagg.In addition to this, I have added a newspaper report of the marriage of Arthur and Emma in 1879, an image of one of the Blagg family homes in Cheadle, and a short section of information about the Blagg family.

As readers of this blog will know, I am in the process of gleaning information about the Blaggs from the Cheadle parish registers, and I hope that eventually I shall be able to expand my coverage of this family.

On the Thomas Hunt, Doctor page the main addition is a superb image of the doctor himself, which I only received last week. Again, my thanks to Richard Bradley for allowing me to share this picture with you.

I have added quite a large number of websites to the Geoffs Genealogy Links page, and hope that you will find them to be useful and informative. I try to include a wide variety of relevant links – some well known and others not so well known – and also confine myself to sites that I consider to be reliable sources of information.

I have tried to bring the Geoffs Genealogy tree completely up to date, but not quite made it, I’m afraid. If you have sent me some material and you can’t find it there I apologise. I shall be beavering away over the next few months, trying to correct any such omissions. I have to say, however, that I have added a great deal of information to the tree, and I hope that visitors to the site will find it even more interesting than previously.

Among the areas of the Geoffs Genealogy Tree that I have expanded significantly in the last year are the following:

My thanks to Brenda for sharing her information with me. Thanks to her the Archer section of the tree is greatly expanded, and includes information on the line down from Thomas Archer (1786-c1866) the brother of Nathan Archer, my ancestor.

Charles Heppell married my great aunt – Alice Victoria Smith – in 1891 at Shoreditch, and thus the Heppells became part of my family tree. I was greatly surprised when I started to look into the Heppell family history and found that they came from Sunderland in the North East of England. There is much still to be discovered on this line of research, but I have made a fair start, I think.

My mother’s uncle Jim was James Archer Smith (1877-1957), who I knew had married a lady named Ophelia. That was as much as I knew up to a year ago, but after digging into Ophelia’s life story I find that she was born Ophelia Eliza Florence Worthy in 1865. She married a certain William Henry Kerr in 1882 at Bethnal Green, had seven Kerr children, and was widowed sometime between 1896 and 1901. She then married mum’s uncle Jim and died in 1928 at Hoxton. I have no idea whether or not mum knew all that; I found the reserach quite fascinating, and wrote about it on my blog during the period February – March 2007.

Next I need to inveestigate James Archer Smith’s second marriage, but for now I’ve added theinformation about Ophelia to the tree.

My thanks to Chris Marshall for sharing with me her information about her line of descent from Benjamin Culshaw (b 1828) and his spouse Barbara Blackwell (b 1828). This has added a great deal to my Culshaw family tree. I still have more of Chris’s information to add, as she has sent me some material relating to her Heaps ancestors. Hopefully I’ll manage this during 2008.

Early in 2007 I was contacted by a Sleigh descendant of Robert Hanham Collyer(1814-1891) and his wife Emily Jeans Clements (born c1847), and the tree now includes some information on this line.

Da Costa
I spent some time during 2007 researching the Da Costa family, using civil registration indexes and censuses. I made great progress, and have therefore been able to add quite a lot of information to this brance of the pedigree. In case you are wondering, around the turn of the 18th-19th centuries two of the daughters of William Hunt (b 1763) married two Da Costa brothers. I now know that one of them – Antonio Da Costa – was the Brazilian Vice Consul during the mid nineteenth century.

Thanks to Ted George in Australia I have been able to add quite a lot to our knowledge of this clan, and that is reflected in the tree. Ted’s forebear – Albert George Benzoni –
dropped the “Benzoni” and adopted “George” as the family surname, hence Ted’s surname. I mention this in case you wonder why I show the surname of some of the people on the tree as “Benzoni/George”.

This was my genealogical highlight of 2007, and was the subject of a number of entries on my blog. This time last year I was completely stuck on my Guyatt research, and had been so stuck for about ten years. Now I’m again stuck – but not at the same point! I’m eagerly seeking the next breakthrough, and hoping that it is not another ten years away! Visitors to the Guyatt section of the tree will find much that is new there. What I now need to know is the birthplace of my John Guyatt, born about 1784 and maried to Hannah Wright in 1817 at High Wycombe. Any offers?

My grateful thanks to my cousin, Pat, for all her help in sorting out the various conundrums that came to light in researching William Freeman Guyatt and his family. We finally got to the bottom of it all, and uncovered some wonderful material. I shall be working towards incorporating it into Geoffs Genealogy as soon as I can.

Whilst researching the Guyatts I was also able to develop the Smedley family history a little. Much remains to be done on this, but the new information is included in the tree, and I hope that we shall learn more before too long.

And more besides
In addition to the above I have added much to many other areas of the Bankes pedigree, using online records – mainly census returns and civil registration indexes. This is a stage in my ongoing effort to “dot the Is and cross the Ts” as much as possible, and I shall continue with this work during 2008. My approach to this is a bit random – I just tend to pick on an individual on the tree and see what I can find.

I think that more or less covers the latest batch of updates. I hope you will find something of interest in Geoffs Genealogy. If so, please let me know, and if you think you may be able to help add to our knowledge I shall be highly delighted to hear from you.

  • This page was last updated on Tuesday January 15th, 2008.

Geoffs Genealogy Update 12 December 2007

Blog time again.

Christmas is now less than a couple of weeks away, and I think I’m more or less up to speed with that. The main mailing of cards have been sent, and the pressies have been bought. In the next few days the Christmas Tree will be set up at chez-Culshaw and we will then really know that yule time is with us. I’m looking forward to seeing my brother again, as I don’t see him very often. It will be good to be able to relax for a few days with the family.

We are well into the UK winter now. Personally, I can’t wait for the longer daylight hours to return. There are aspects of winter that I like – football, for instance, but for me the worst aspect of that season is the shortening of the daylight hours. I cannot wait for 21 December to pass, so that we can start moving towards the Spring.

You will not be too surprised, I’m sure, to learn that during the past couple of weeks I’ve been busy on the treeing front. I think I mentioned in my last notes that I was recently contacted by an Australian member of the Benzoni clan, and this has led me to spend some time working on this branch of the Bankes pedigree. The Benzonis hailed from Italy. Some time in the first part of the nineteenth century they made their way from Italy to London, and Charles Benzoni (b Como, c1811) married a Bankes descendant – Eleanor (Brannon) Crow (b London c1809). Eleanor was descended from Ann Deane, half-sister to John Bankes. They went on to have four children, and Ted in Australia has kindly sent me details of his descent from these people. Ted, if you are reading this, I am working on the printouts you sent me and will contact you again when I’ve updated my records.

Last week we also exchanged emails with a South American Sayer researcher who lives in Colombia. The Sayers are on Jan’s part of the tree. Samuel Sayer (circa1799-1866) and his wife Elizabeth Utting (b circa 1803) emigrated from East Anglia to Colombia in the nineteenth century and many of his descendants are avid family history researchers. It is always a pleasure to hear from them, and we were delighted to add a new contact.

I have also been delighted to hear recently from a Culshaw researcher. Alas, her research was not on my line, but I was delighted to be able to put her in contact with a very long-standing friend and fellow Culshaw researcher, whose research does link to hers.

I still have a lot of material to work through that was sent to me by Chris a few weeks ago. I’ve mentioned Chris before. She is another Culshaw researcher, whose research does link to mine. She sent me “Heaps” of material about the Heaps branch of her family, and I’m looking forward to working my way through it.

On the Guyatt front Pat has done some really great research, which has resulted in us obtaining some fantastic information about the branch of the clan that spent some time in Plymouth and served in the British army. I am looking forward to studying the latest material in the next few days. I have mentioned this research avenue before, but not elaborated. I’m doing the same again – not that I want to tease you; rather because it would take a long time for me to explain this research properly, and a blog does not seem the appropriate place to do that. If any of you would like to know more about this research please contact me through the link on and I’ll be pleased to tell you about it.

I also have a number of other items of research that I need to get to in the new year, so there’s no sign of the pace slowing in the near future.

At this time of year I am usually beavering away, preparing the next lot of updates to the website. Alas, this year I am all behind. I haven’t started yet!

I have plans for some new pages,and some significant amendments to existing pages, but at present I can’t say when they will enter cyberspace.Sorry about that. It’s going to be a case of “watch this space”, I’m afraid. Hopefully we may be able to get an updated tree in place on the site before too long, however.

That’s it for now. See you in another couple of weeks.

Have a very happy Christmas and a happy & healthy new year.

  • This page was last updated on Wednesday December 12th, 2007.

Geoffs Genealogy News Update

Much activity this week on Jan’s Sayer lines (you can see the Sayer line on the tree on the site).

Samuel Sayer (b c1799) and his wife, Elizabeth Utting (b c1803) married in Jamaica in 1828 and settled Bogota, Colombia shortly afterwards. They had eight children that we know of, all born in Bogota, and the descendants of these people are living in South America/USA. They really are very keen on family history, and although we have had some contact with them previously, this week we have gone on to their mailing list. The result has been a very large number of emails that have dropped into our in box. It will take some time to assimilate all the information that is coming in, but as soon as possible we will put some of it on Geoffs Genealogy.

Also this week, a couple of other really exciting new contacts. One from a Culshaw researcher, and the other from a direct descendant of Robert Hanham Collyer- one of our favourite research subjects.

  • This page was last updated on Sunday January 14th, 2007.