Tracing your English Ancestors with Pen & Sword Press – Tuesday’s Tip

I’ve been overdosing on British genealogy lately, and I think the blame goes clearly to publisher Pen and Sword Press for their astonishing number of recently published research guides.

On my desk right now are titles such as Tracing your Rural Ancestors by Jonathan Brown, Tracing your Criminal Ancestors by Stephen Wade, Tracing your Textile Ancestors by Vivien Teasdale, Tracing your Shipbuilding Ancestors by Anthony Burton, and Tracing your Pauper Ancestors by Robert Burlison.

You heard me wax poetic about Tracing your Legal Ancestors by Stephen Wade last year, which outlined the ins and outs of the British legal system.  This insight was a great asset to some of my patron queries, and I’m happy to say the book has been filling inter-library loan requests to patrons throughout the region.

In my quest to fill our shelves with new ethnic and geographical genealogy guides this year, I was on the lookout for titles which could help my patrons bridge the gap from findmypast.co.uk, findmypast.ie, and Scotlands People to records which may be available in other depositories.  I’ve been giddy reading these books, which are just what a researcher needs to tackle some of these subjects.  Each book includes facts, case studies, and a step-by-step guides for your research.

I found Tracing Your Pauper Ancestors and Tracing your Rural Ancestors to be especially helpful in my personal research.  Pauper Ancestors gave me a touchstone in admission procedures for poorhouse, charity hospitals, and workhouses. Rural Ancestors gave me insights into land records, enclosure records, and the roles of small village life.

Each of these titles and more are available for sale online and at book stores, and a growing number of libraries are purchasing these titles as well.   Call or visit your local library to check these items out, or ask the library staff to request the titles you want from another library.  If you want to see what libraries own these Pen and Sword titles, visit WorldCat.org.  The website is easy to use and my give you an idea of what libraries to visit on a research trip.

ALSO: Join the Fountaindale Public Library Genealogy Club for a tour of the Naperville Cemetery on Wednesday, June 13 at 7 p.m.  The Naperville Cemetery is located at 705 S Washington Street, Naperville.  Look for signs at the entry way of the cemetery.  This event will allow you to try your hand at grave dousing and sharpen your deduction skills with a cemetery symbolism scavenger hunt.  For any questions, e-mail me at ddudek@fountaindale.org or give me a call at (630) 685-4201.

See you at the Library!


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