Genealogy news roundup: British Newspaper Archive adds military title

By Rosemary Collins, 13 April 2018 - 2:24pm

Plus: Ancestry adds New South Wales hospital and burial records; England and Wales electoral registers for 1920 go online; MyHeritage offers free DNA tests to adoptees

Sir Hugh Trenchard
The Duke of Wellington at the Battle of Vitoria, 1813. (Credit: Hulton Archive/ Getty Images)

The British Newspaper Archive (BNA) has added issues of a new specialist military newspaper from the early 19th century.

On its blog, the BNA described the 1814 to 1820 issues of The Military Register, which are now available for its subscribers, as "extremely important" for those interested in the conflicts of the late Georgian period and the last years of the Napoleonic Wars.

The paper, which reported on battalion movements and military promotions, also covers the relationship between the army and the East India Company in this period.

The British Newspaper Archive is also available to Findmypast's Pro subscribers.


Ancestry adds New South Wales hospital and burial records

Records of hospital admissions and burials in the town of Casino in New South Wales, Australia have been indexed on Ancestry.

The collection consists of 8,873 records dating from 1913 to 1997 and includes records of Casino Friendly Society Hospital, Casino Funerals & Monuments and Casino Lawn Cemetery.

Family history researchers can use the records to find out details such as their relatives' estimated dated of birth and their religion.

The hospital records include their date of admission, their place of residence and the doctor who treated them, while the burial records include the date and place of their death and burial or funeral.


England and Wales electoral registers for 1920 go online

Over 6.7 million records from the England and Wales 1920 Electoral Register have been indexed by subscription website Findmypast.

This will help family historians looking to bridge the gap between the 1939 Register and the 1911 census, both of which are also available on Findmypast.

The records are part of Findmypast's collection of electoral registers in partnership with the British Library, many of which are currently on the site as PDFs.

Findmypast said: "Our new collection of 1920 Electoral Registers has been created in a new and unique way. The records have been taken from our wider collection of Electoral Register PDFs which, like our collection of British and Irish Newspapers is currently searchable through a technology called Optical Character Recognition (OCR)."

England and Wales electoral registers for 1920 go online


MyHeritage offers free DNA tests to adoptees

Adoptees and family members looking to find each other have the chance to receive a free MyHeritage DNA test as the company announced it is expanding its pro bono DNA Quest initiative globally.

Since DNA Quest launched in the USA, it has received 10,000 applications for a total of 15,000 free testing kits.

MyHeritage is accepting applications from adoptees seeking to find their biological family members, or anyone looking for a family member placed for adoption, until 30 April.

Preference will be given to those unable to afford genetic testing, and to those who apply first.


New French and German records collections on FamilySearch

Free family history website FamilySearch has added new collections of records from the Rhineland in Germany and Brittany in France.

The first collection includes 2,427,746 church and civil records from Brittany, spanning the years 1521 to 1896.

The German collection consists of 817,226 Catholic church records from the diocese of Trier, dating from 1704 to 1957.

Both collections include transcribed birth, marriage and death records, featuring details including the date and location and the names of the individual's parents or spouse.


Historian appeals for grandmothers' stories

The lives of grandmothers are being celebrated in a new project, 'Tell Me About Your Granny'.

Historian and genealogist Lucy Whitfield is encouraging individuals and organisations to share their grandmothers' stories as part of her The Women Who Made Me project.

She describes the aim of the project as "to both encourage people to engage with their female family history, and to collect stories to further validate women's social history".

To take part, email Lucy on - anonymity is guaranteed.


Free website to connect family historians launches

Evidentree, a new free website designed to make it easier for family historians to connect with others researching the same people, is now available.

Users can upload their family trees as GEDCOM files, connect with other family historians interested in the same names and places, form groups and discuss family history problems, earning points as they do so.

It was built by Greg Scowen after a discussion in a family history group where he was an administrator.


Heritage Lottery Fund grant approved for new Suffolk archives facility

The Hold, a major new home for Suffolk's archives and heritage services, has received a £10.3 million grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The £20 million project, located in the University of Suffolk on Ipswich waterfront, is scheduled to open by the end of 2019.

Cllr Tony Goldson said: "We are delighted to receive this National Lottery funding and it's fantastic to see the project we've worked so hard for being brought to life."

Separately, Suffolk County Council is also holding a consultation into plans to close Lowestoft Record Office and move its collections to The Hold, which have attracted protests from local residents.

Get more from Suffolk's archive resources with this month's magazine's free bonus content



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