Volume 1

Whilst researching Discover Gloucestershire Ancestors, I found so much material that  it became necessary to split  the work into two volumes.

Volume 1, in paperback form, is due to be published on 1st March 2012. It has 256 pages and is filled with tables of information, illustrations, maps and examples to help you locate documents relating to your family history.


Do you know ….

  • what indexes and online resources are available for Gloucestershire?
  • what name censuses exist for the county, pre-1841?
  • which Gloucestershire parishes are not on the IGI?
  • what a peculiar will is?
  • how you might find the father of an illegitimate child?
  • whether your ancestor sat on the jury or stood in the dock?

The answers to all these questions and many more are to be found in Discover Gloucestershire Ancestors, Volume 1.

See what’s in the Discover Gloucestershire Ancestors table of contents.

Each chapter sells individually as PDF (Portable Document Format) for £2.50.

Chapter Overview
#1 Gloucestershire Born and Bred This chapter provides a very basic introduction to beginning the hunt for your ancestors which will be expanded in subsequent chapters. More importantly, it gives you the background knowledge that you need about the way the area has been organised over the centuries for different purposes, to help you to locate the wide range of sources that can enhance your research.
#2 Civil Registration This chapter necessarily relates more to national records than to those specific to Gloucestershire but, nonetheless, it gives knowledge that should help in locating the birth, marriage or death certificates that you are seeking for local ancestors as well as information on recent indexes.
#3 The Census The censuses are extremely helpful in helping you trace your ancestors back to 1841.    But did you know that some earlier Gloucestershire censuses still exist, containing personal information, some going back to 1801?
#4 Parish Registers Have you traced your ancestors back beyond 1837 yet?  This chapter gives you vital information to help you trace your ancestors back beyond civil registration and the censuses. If you are lucky, you may get back to 1538 using parish registers.
#5 Nonconformity Were your Gloucestershire ancestors nonconformists?  This chapter will help you to understand the different practices of each denomination and to discover the availability of their records.  Whether Baptist, Methodist, Congregationalist, Quaker, Jew, Roman Catholic or of any other faith, this chapter tells you what to expect when seeking information on your ancestors.
#6 Probate Have you found a will for your Gloucestershire ancestor?  Do you realise how few people left a will, making your chance of locating one quite slim.  Are they all indexed?   This chapter will help you to understand where that elusive probate document might be found and tell you what you might expect to find if you do locate it.
#7 More on Births and Infancy This chapter on births and infancy will help you to understand what records exist for stillborn babies, foundlings and orphans as well as the more common illegitimate children.  Sample documents are included to help you realise what information you might gain to enhance your family history.
#8 More on Marriage This chapter on marriage covers the necessary documents to enable a marriage, such as licences and banns, as well as the problems that can occur when a marriage breaks down. This includes sections on adultery, divorce and bigamy and includes sample documents that you might find.
#9 More on Deaths Do you know where your ancestor was buried? This chapter covers burials and indexes, cemeteries and crematoria, undertaker’s records, monumental inscriptions and memorial cards, newspaper reports, death duties and Inquisitiones Post Mortem.
#10 Coroners’ Records Did your ancestor die a sudden death?  Does the death certificate indicate that an inquest was held?  This chapter covers the coroners’ records available in Gloucestershire that may help you discover what happened.
#11 Sessions and Assizes These records are too often ignored by researchers but they hold a wealth of information of interest to family historians. Not only can you find information on your ancestor’s day in court, you have a good chance of locating that elusive father of an illegitimate child.
#12 Gaols and Houses of Correction There are many records relating to prisoners held locally in houses of correction and gaols or those transported or executed. If your ancestor was a a prisoner, however briefly, this chapter will give you the information you need to locate records for him or her.

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