Day: October 29, 2010

One Name Dilema

I need some help, advice or perhaps medication!

I’m seriously thinking about embarking on a One Name Study. I’ve been mulling this over for the last two or three weeks. I’ve looked at the Guild of One-Name Studies website, I’ve Googled “one name studies” loads of times and I’ve checked for one name study blogs and websites.

I know it will be an arduous task and I will need to be really well organised and committed. I am prepared for that – to be in for the long haul.

My wife’s family name is Espley and that’s the one I want to research. There are 108 Espley’s on the England 1841 census and 408 on the 1911 census. There are some other derivations of the name as you would expect – Epsley, Esply, Epsly, Aspley, Apsly and Asply – all appear on the 1911 census. Not sure how many of these are transcription errors – they will all need to be checked and recorded though.

I know some of the people we have in our family tree emigrated to Canada and New Zealand and most likely to other places as well.

To start with I am going to concentrate on the UK and see how I get on.

I could do with some advice about the best way to manage the information. I found one website offering a database called Custodian 3 and on various forums people have said that they have just used a spreadsheet, like Excel.

So should I just go for the commercial product and save time – it isn’t expensive but perhaps it’s not essential either. I’m not particulalrly good at setting up a database from scratch – I could probably manage a simple spreadsheet though. So any help or advice about your experiences if you have gone down this road would be welcome – thanks.

I’ve already handwritten the England 1841 census information and the IGI marriages into my trusty notebook. Just really to get a feel for how much work is going to be involved. I’m now itching to get this information into a database or spreadsheet.

I’m going to set myself a research plan – GRO indexes, rest of the census records and IGI births and deaths to start.

I’ve more or less decided to focus on Espley in the UK first and look overseas later. Other questions are – should I register with the Guild of One Name Studies right away and maybe register a website domain for when I’m ready to publish the results.

I’m getting really giddy about the prospect of starting this new project.