Monday, October 31, 2011

BWP (37): Connecting the Dots

There are times when the tree branches get pretty thick. All those names, locations, histories, dates, etc., do you connect all those dots? This is very common in Welsh genealogy when the family is recorded in various towns with very unusual names. How are they all connected?

It was not until I connected a number town locations that it became evident that the family was really from the same area of Wales! The map to the right shows a drawing of many of the towns and locations that my JONES family resided. The names were taken from records, wills, deeds, etc., and their geographic locations identified. They fell along Wat's Dyke which had been the border between Wales and the Marches since 700 AD. The family located in a geographic area that represented the tribal group from which my JONES surname originated. An explanation that helped connect the dots!

Monday, October 24, 2011

BWP(36): A Place to Work

Having a good place to work is important in breaking down many of those brick walls. It often takes placing all the information about you in a single location that can be utilized over a period of time. A card table, a dinning table, even an end table can work. [It will sometimes take those in the family to agree to let you leave the work items about.]

The picture shows my work table. Lights, action, camera...well maybe not the camera. But you can get the idea. Space to work... a place to work... brick by brick.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

BWP(35): Your Own Research - An Example

There often comes a time when things just seem to go nowhere. No helps, no records, no documents, no leads, and no direction to help get you around those brick walls. What is one to do?

At this point in my own tree climbing, I would begin to do my own research. What do I need to know? Where do I need to go? What questions can I try and answer for myself?

The following two figures represent such a research attempt. I wanted to know if those who shared the JONES surname were more likely to go to Oxford or Cambridge. If so, would there be an area of the county which they would more likely come. I wanted to try and bridge that part of colonial history which sent their sons to England for their "higher" education. I was hoping this would connect my Virginia JONES family back to an area of the "mother country".

These first figure shows that the JONES surname attended Oxford roughly 3 to 1. This would help me decided to go to Oxford first, looking for my "Richard Jones".

The second figure shows a map that outlines the counties from which those JONES originated. Blue for Oxford, and pink for Cambridge. Yellow showed those counties that had did not have a single JONES for the time period under study. I would at least know that the JONES surname would not come these counties.

This study also showed me that Wales seemed to send their boys to Oxford. The eastern counties seemed to send their boys to Cambridge.

This at least gave me some ideas as to where to start looking.