WW1 Widow’s Penny – A Window to the past

WW1 Widow’s Penny – A Window to the past

Finding a WW1 Widow’s Penny: When sorting out the effects of a deceased relative I happened across an old weighty, partly damaged, envelope.  In the top right hand corner was a pre-stamped mark of a crown surrounded by the words ‘Official Paid’. To the left of this was the remnants of the word ‘service’, ‘vice’.  Below was a stuck on pre-typed address: 244562  Mr C. Miles Thrift Cottage, Aldington, Hythe, Kent.   Another sticker at the bottom states “if undelivered…

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Seeking the truth behind your English criminal ancestors

Seeking the truth behind your English criminal ancestors

In researching both for ourselves, and for our clients, we may occasionally unearth criminal ancestors, or information that is difficult to communicate. It is imperative that we frame the happenings of history not only for ourselves, but for our clients. Social context and thorough research are needed to fully understand the lives of all our ancestors – most especially those we may not immediately like.   While researching you discover a new ancestor. With a feeling of excitement as a…

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Using historical documents to capture student engagement

Using historical documents to capture student engagement

As well as my genealogical work, I also work part time teaching mathematics to adults in the community for a local further education college. This week I was planning a session on revision for mean, mode, median, range, tally charts and graphs. Not the most inspiring of subjects for learners who find mathematics difficult. Rather than collating information on the shoe sizes of the group – a scenario used in many teaching aids, I wanted something different. So how could…

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Adoption – Starting the search for your English birth ancestors

Adoption – Starting the search for your English birth ancestors

I was born in 1962 in London and placed with my adoption family six weeks later. I was told I was adopted when I was 5 and my adoptive mother was pregnant with her second natural child. As I got older I began to think more about my birth parents, picturing them in their mansion with a swimming pool, just waiting for me to knock on their door. With adulthood came the strong desire to find out about my heritage….

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