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Friday, 6 April 2012

G is Geneabloggers, Genuki, Gravetones, Gazateers & George - A-Z Genealogical Challenge

Ros at http://genwestuk.blogspot.com/ has come  up with the idea of an A to Z genealogical challenge for the month of April.  It soon got me thinking, so here are my contributions.

G is for:

Geneabloggers (www.geneabloggers.com) - the network site that is "must see" viewing for anyone interested in writing about family history.  I was recommended it in the early weeks of starting my blog in summer 2010.   I fully expected to have run out of material for postings by now, but geneabloggers' prompts, plus the support of like-minded enthusiasts are so stimulating, I have never looked back.  So if you haven't joined the site, take a look and join us

Genuki (http://www.genuki.co.uk/) was one of the first genealogy websites that I used  and it is a  must for anyone trying to work their way around the geogeraphy of Britain. It is a virtual reference library and source list for parishes, towns, counties and countries that form the United Kingdom.  

Gravestones are fascinating places for family historians and many volunteers have done a sterling job in recording monumental inscriptions, which can sometimes list 3-4 generations of a family.  I must admit a childhood folly, when I saw a gravestone with a skull and crossbones carved on it and got all excited thinking it meant a pirate was buried there!  I later found out it was a symbol of death.  If you are puzzled at what you find, try to have a look at Betty Willsher's book on "Understanding Scottish Gravestones". 

Gazeteers - Stuck in finding information  about a place connected with your family?  For Scotland an indispensable tool is  Groome's "Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland" first published in six volumes in 1882. It quickly established a reputation as the authoritative gazetteer of Scotland, and has been the standard reference to the present day. 

George Danson (1894-1916)  -  I have always had a soft spot for George Danson, the youngest of 8 surviving sons of James Danson and Maria Rawcliffe.  He looks very serious and studious in photographs and an image of what he was like came from a variety of sources.   My mother and aunt referred to him as their favourite uncle, more like an older brother.   But his life was cut short  at the young age of 22 on Septemer 16th 1916 when  as a stretcher bearer, he was killed at the Battle of the Somme.

George's service record (on www.ancestry.co.uk) notes that on enlistment he was was 5"4' tall, size  34 1/2 chest and wore glasses.  

The local newspaper reported  his death and told  how he was a member of St. Chad's Church choir, Poulton  and prior to enlisting had been manager of W. H.  Smith station bookstall at Todmorden, West Yorkshire.

Captain Macleod in writing to his widowed mother who had four other sons serving said
"He was one of my stretcher bearers and was gallantly doing his duty over open and dangerous ground which suddenly became subjected to severe shell fire.  He continued steadily bearing his burden and was only stopped by the shell that took his life. We mourn his loss and are very proud of him".

The death announcement in the local paper read: 

The bugle may sound, the war drum may rattle
But no more they arouse their young hero to battle
For his King and his Country his life he nobly gave
And now he lies sleeping in a soldier's grave

 From Mother, Brothers, Sister, 2 Bull Street, Poulton-le-Fylde

1 comment:

  1. Geneabloggers is a fantastic resource to the genie bloggers...I wish I'd learnt about it sooner as I was blogging into the ether, so to speak.

    I got goosebumps reading about George Danson. He may have been short in stature but very tall in courage. No wonder he's a favourite with you. I hope their other sons came home.


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