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The hair, violence, and craftsmanship of Emma Willis’ ancestors

Trinity College, Dublin

Emma Willis explored the back streets of Birmingham, uncovered a violent ancestor, and revealed magnificent Irish craftsmanship in her family tree.  In this week’s episode of Who Do You Think You Are?, we followed the lives of three of Willis’ ancestors: James Gretton, Richard Fowler, and Michael Kirwan.  We will take a closer look at the newspapers and explore what more we can discover about the stories and lives revealed. James Gretton Emma Willis found out that her three-time great

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Journeys Through Time webinar Q&A

The British Newspaper Archive travel and migration webinar

On 20 July 2017, many of you joined us for our webinar, Journeys Through Time: Discovering Travel & Migration in Old Newspapers.  In the webinar, we reviewed how to find passenger lists, emigration notices, letters from abroad, and so much more.  If you were not able to attend the live webinar, you can watch it on demand through our You Tube channel.   The theme of this month’s webinar was travel, thus we received many questions about early passport requirements.

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Crime and clogging in Craig Revel Horwood’s family

The Clog Dance

This week’s episode of Who Do You Think You Are? took us down under and all over Australia. Craig Revel Horwood was able to learn how his ancestors on both sides of his family came to be in Australia and what activities occupied their days, from mining for gold to clog dancing. Convicts in the family Craig’s family history journey began with his sister’s retelling of their great-great grandfather Moses Horwood being convicted of theft and transported to Australia. While it is

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Hot off the press – New Titles week of 19 June

Tempted though we were by the beautiful weather this week, we didn’t shirk our duties to our readers. This week we’ve added 102,418 pages to the Archive.  We’ve added another two brand-new titles this week, bringing the number of newspapers on the site to an impressive 772. Joining the archive this week are the The Catholic Standard and the Croydon Guardian and Surrey County Gazette. Register now and view 3 pages for FREE The Catholic Standard describes itself as An

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#AskBNA on Twitter

In May, The British Newspaper Archive participated in #AncestryHour, a Twitter event which takes place every Tuesday 7 pm BST organised by @Ancestryhour.  Each week, the community gathers to discuss the latest news in the genealogy world, give expert advice to novice researchers, and share stories of their recent genealogy discoveries. In a special #Ancestryhour, @BNArchive  answered questions live on twitter about our site using the hashtag #AskBNA.  We had a wide range of questions and responses.  If you didn’t

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Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2017 Recap

Thousands arrived at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham for Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2017 between Thursday 6 April and Saturday 8 April.  Today, we are reviewing a few of the family history stories revealed during the show and we will share 5 of the top search tips discussed during the event. The event welcomed family historians and genealogists from across the country to come together to discuss their research and to find out more about the

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Newspapers – More than obituaries

This week thousands have assembled at Who Do You Think You Are? Live in Birmingham to demolish those brick walls, learn new tricks of genealogy, and hear about the latest news of family history.  Most of us have searched the newspapers for obituaries, but much more can be revealed about our ancestor’s lives than the memorials at their death.  Today, we will take a look at the divorce courts, bankruptcy notices, illegitimacy cases, and committee minutes. The mid- to late

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Sunetra Sarker explores her Indian heritage

This week’s episode of Who Do You Think You Are? took us to India and Bangladesh with Sunetra Sarker.  During the program, Sarker became familiar with her Indian ancestors and learned how the tragedies of war affected her family.  With the use of newspapers, Sarker was able to place her ancestors into the context of public events and gain a deeper understanding of the lives they led. At the beginning of the episode, Sunetra conveys a feeling most of us

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Newspapers for Family History

Newspapers are an invaluable resource for researching your family history. Contained within their pages are tens of millions of reports, advertisements, and notices that can help you break down brick walls and tell richer stories about your ancestors. The Archive works with the British Library and publishers to bring you 300 years of newspapers from the UK and Ireland.  Get the most out of our historical newspapers with these hints and tips. What newspapers do we have? We add more

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A Lost Great Grandmother found

I started researching my family history over 20 years ago. I knew that my Grandmother and her sister had been left with guardians in Boston, Lincolnshire when they were very young. My Grandma died when I was young, but in later years my Granddad told me that her parents, my great-grandparents, had gone to Canada and had promised to call for their daughters when they were settled. They never did. As I started my research I soon discovered the names

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