General

Posts about genealogy research and my experiences

FRIDAY’S FACES FROM THE PAST – BLACKPOOL PLEASURE BEACH

This is another photograph from my collection of unknown people.

The photograph is printed on a post card. The imprint on the reverse of the photograph is Charles Howell, Official Photographer, Pleasure Beach, Blackpool.

Whoever these two fine looking gentleman are they are presumably enjoying a holiday or day trip to Blackpool. I don’t know when the photograph was taken however. I do know that some of Howell’s photographs had a very helpful date stamp on the reverse – sadly that is not the case with this one.

EPSON MFP image

There is quite a bit of information on the Internet about Charles Howell including this interesting blog post by Photo-Sleuth on his blog here.

It appears that Charles Howell opened a studio in 1913 at Bank Hey Street, Blackpool – just behind the promenade close to the Tower. He specialised in producing novelty caricature portraits. You could be photographed wearing a top hat, playing a banjo or holding a giant bottle of beer. You could also be “snapped” on a paper mache horse or a real live donkey.

However his trademark was a motorcycle (like the one above). If you follow the link to Photo-Sleuth you will see a photograph of the outside of Howell’s studio with the headline “Be Photographed on the Motor Cycle”.

Happy Days!!

Friday’s Faces From The Past – Mystery Couple

It’s been more than two years since I last posted a photograph in Friday’s Faces From The Past. And I have to say it feels a bit like deja vu.

The woman in the photograph of the would be flapper girl from October 2013 (see post under Friday’s Faces From The Past category) seems to be the same woman in this new photograph. Or is it just me that can see a resemblance?

I am still no nearer being able to identify her. And now I have her companion to think about. There is no ring on her wedding finger so what is their relationship? Are they a couple? Are they in love?

The photograph is printed on a post card. There is nothing written on the back and no details of the photographer or where it is was printed.

I suspect that the photograph was taken sometime in the 1920’s.

Do you agree with me that the woman in both photographs is the same?

Mystery Couple

Summer recess is over

Hello – I’ve taken a break from blogging over the summer.

It has allowed me time to do some research for other people which I really enjoy. Also me and Mrs D have taken up “hiking” or really just strolling gently on a Sunday around our lovely Yorkshire countryside – this has stopped me becoming almost permanently attached to my computer.

I now need to re-connect with some relatives who have contacted me through my blog over the last year. I discovered new relatives in Yorkshire and in Australia.

Anyway please look out for new posts coming soon and thanks for taking time to read my blog and for your comments.

World Poetry Day

Today is World Poetry Day so I thought I would share  two poems for all my fellow genealogists.

Your Ancestors

If you could see your ancestors all standing in a row,
Would you be proud of them?  Or don’t you really know?
Strange discoveries are often made, in climbing the family tree.
Sometimes one is found in line who shocks the progeny.

If you could see your ancestors all standing in a row,
Perhaps there might be one or two you wouldn’t care to know.
Now turn the question right about and take another view.
When you shall meet your ancestors, will they be proud of you?

Author Unknown

Dear Ancestor

Your tombstone stands among the rest; neglected and alone.
The name and date are chiseled out on polished, marble stone.
It reaches out to all who care; it is too late to mourn.
You did not know that I exist; you died and I was born.

Yet each of us are cells of you in flesh, in blood, in bone.
Our blood contracts and beats a pulse entirely not our own.
Dear Ancestor, the place you filled one hundred years ago.
Spreads out among the ones you left who would have loved you so.

I wonder as you lived and loved, I wonder if you knew
That someday I would find this spot, and come to visit you.

Author Unknown

CWGC Website

I have just visited the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) website for the first time since it’s relaunch on 19 January.

I must say that I am really impressed both with the look and feel of the site.  It has certainly been brought ‘up to date’ with a much more modern style.

All the same information is there but is presented more clearly and I found it easier to navigate around the pages.

If you haven’t been on yet go and have a look.  What do you think about it?

I’ve been away – but now I’m back

I’ve been missing from the blogging world for a few weeks but now I’m back.

At the beginning of September we had a family illness to deal with and things now look a lot better than they did nine weeks ago.  So my focus has been somewhere else for a while.

However I haven’t been neglecting my family history research completely.  I have been a subscriber to Ancestry for a long time but was becoming frustrated with not being able to find some entries in the 1901 census that I knew should be there.  No matter what search criteria I used I couldn’t find any entries for my Dawson relatives in the village of Steeton with Eastburn, near Keighley, West Yorkshire.  In fact I couldn’t find any entries at all for Steeton with Eastburn.

So I decided to buy a subscription to Find My Past.  There were two reasons for this.  One was to see if I had any better luck trying to find people living in Steeton with Eastburn.  Second it gave me access to the 1911 census – I had been paying separately for this on the 1911 Census website and this was becoming expensive.

I was immediately rewarded.  There it was – Steeton with Eastburn did exist in 1901 and there was a census!!  I was able to fill in quite a few gaps in my information.

It seems that this whole village is missing from Ancestry.

I was then eager to start updating as much of my tree as I could with the 1911 census information.  So over the past few weeks I have been trying to go through the primary names in my ancestry and systematically add the 1911 information and search for subsequent births, marriages and deaths.  This work is ongoing.

I have to say that I was really excited at the prospect of using a new set of records from Find My Past.  However I was also quite disappointed with the quality of some of the census transcriptions that I came across.  I duly submitted corrections and they were quick to deal with these.

Don’t get me wrong here – I know how difficult it is to accurately transcribe handwriting especially if the document is not very clear and the location names are not known to the transciber.  I discovered just how hard it was when I started transcribing for Family Search.  But sometimes the correct information just seems so obvious.  Anyway that’s my little rant out of the way.

As a result of all this my attention has been diverted from blogging – but I have kept up to date with some of my favourite bloggers and am glad to be back with you.