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General => Armed Forces => Topic started by: Paul5 on Sunday 12 December 21 15:00 GMT (UK)

Title: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Sunday 12 December 21 15:00 GMT (UK)
Hello
An ancestor's 1860 birth certificate has under father's occupation 'Petty Officer HMS Centurion'.

Where does one start with researching this individual's career and ships served on? I can't find him on any census and assume he was always away at sea on those dates. I'm a bit of a beginner with armed forces family history research.

Any pointers gratefully received.
Thanks
P
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: ShaunJ on Sunday 12 December 21 15:31 GMT (UK)
Ancestry, Find My Past, National Archives.

If you give us his name we can have a dig around.
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Sunday 12 December 21 15:37 GMT (UK)
The name is William Revill. I don't have any dates of birth or death, but the family was based in Plymouth and his wife was Elizabeth GIBBS.
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Sunday 12 December 21 15:41 GMT (UK)
Or Revell, Revel...
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Sunday 12 December 21 16:40 GMT (UK)
Elizabeth is a widow in 1881 RG11/2198 f106 page 68.  When did William die

ADDED 1871 has her marital status as Mar and occupation as Widow  :-\
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Sunday 12 December 21 17:00 GMT (UK)
Do you have the marriage between William & Elizabeth.  It may help us track him down.

There is an Elizabeth Gibbs 'Single' with son William H Gibbs age 5 months in Plymouth in 1861 RG9/1440 folio 82 page 4.  :-\
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Sunday 12 December 21 17:12 GMT (UK)
I don't know when William died or when/if he married Elizabeth. But that reference to 1861 with son William H. looks promising, thanks
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Sunday 12 December 21 17:26 GMT (UK)
Anna Marias baptism does not mention a father. It states that Elizabeth is a single woman - abode Adelaide Street
Her birth date 18 December 1867 and baptism 2 February 1871

ADDED
In 1871 Elizabeths mother Catherine Gibbs and her brother Henry Gibbs are with her.  There is no sign of daughter Catherine who was born in 1865

REVELL, CATHERINE  JANE     mmn GIBBS 
GRO Reference: 1865  March Quarter in PLYMOUTH  Volume 05B  Page 301

Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Brentor boy on Sunday 12 December 21 18:18 GMT (UK)
The birth of a Wiilam Henry Revell, mmn Gibbs, was registered in Plymouth, Dec Q 1860. ( GRO Index)
I can find no record of a William H Gibbs born at this time and place to match the entry on the 1861 census.

Added.
GRO Index. Death. Catherine Gibbs. June Q 1865. Plymourh. Age 0
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Sunday 12 December 21 18:29 GMT (UK)
I am wondering how accurate Elizabeths description of William Henry's father was, presumably she was the one that registered the birth  :-\

ADDED Was there an address on that birth certificate
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Hillhurst on Sunday 12 December 21 18:44 GMT (UK)
I don't see a William Reville/Revell onboard the HMS Centurian in the 1861 census. It was docked in Hamoaze, Devon at the time.
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Sunday 12 December 21 21:12 GMT (UK)
I am wondering how accurate Elizabeths description of William Henry's father was, presumably she was the one that registered the birth  :-\

ADDED Was there an address on that birth certificate
Yes, the address was Adelaide Street and the mother was the one who registered the birth
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Sunday 12 December 21 21:14 GMT (UK)
I don't see a William Reville/Revell onboard the HMS Centurian in the 1861 census. It was docked in Hamoaze, Devon at the time.
I suppose he could have moved ship or it's all made up and this person was never in the RN!
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Annette7 on Monday 13 December 21 03:26 GMT (UK)
There is a record of a William Revill in British Royal Navy and Royal Marine Service & Pension Records on Find My Past.   He served from 1833 until 1874 - lists his various ships but seems to be a bit of a gap from 1859 to 1863.   If I'm reading it right looks like he was a Petty Officer in 1859.   

Alas, no details of his age or where born.

So, the man appears to have existed and was alive in 1874.

Annette
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Monday 13 December 21 08:26 GMT (UK)
That looks really promising Annette  :). 

There is a small download available on TNA website (FREE if you register) for a William Revell that gives date of birth 22 Feb 1813 at Portsmouth.  It has one entry showing Asia 1 January 1873 - 1 July 74 but no other clues to indicate that it is the same person

https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D6586142
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: ShaunJ on Monday 13 December 21 09:58 GMT (UK)
Quote
He served from 1833 until 1874 - lists his various ships but seems to be a bit of a gap from 1859 to 1863.   If I'm reading it right looks like he was a Petty Officer in 1859. 

He was posted to HMS Asia from 1859 to 1861. Asia was the HQ ship for Portsmouth at that time so he could have served on various ships.

The record is also on Ancestry:
https://www.ancestry.co.uk/imageviewer/collections/9050/images/42474_1831101456_11491-00098

Seems to have been an AB who served as a supernumary Petty Officer at that time. Posted to HMS Asia again from 1866-1874 which sort of ties in with the other record:
https://www.ancestry.co.uk/imageviewer/collections/60522/images/43283_adm_188_19-0235

The only census entries that tie in with all this are for a William H Revell born Portsmouth circa 1813 who had a wife and family in Portsea (William Henry Revell married Margaret Kevern in 1852).


Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Monday 13 December 21 10:53 GMT (UK)
The birth of a Wiilam Henry Revell, mmn Gibbs, was registered in Plymouth, Dec Q 1860. ( GRO Index)
I can find no record of a William H Gibbs born at this time and place to match the entry on the 1861 census.

Added.
GRO Index. Death. Catherine Gibbs. June Q 1865. Plymourh. Age 0
That's the right person - that's the birth certificate I quoted in the original post.
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Monday 13 December 21 10:59 GMT (UK)
Thank you Shaun, I was hoping that you would explain it for us  :)

I had also wondered about the married William H Revell whose wife Margaret was born in Devonport
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Monday 13 December 21 11:03 GMT (UK)
GRO Index. Death. Catherine Gibbs. June Q 1865. Plymourh. Age 0

Burial at Ford Park Cemetery on 13 June 1865 age 4 months
abode 7 Central St, Plymouth

Catherines birth registration
Birth Mar qtr 1865 
Revell    Catherine Jane        Plymouth    5b   301
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Monday 13 December 21 11:13 GMT (UK)
Catherine Gibbs senior was buried at Ford Park age 78 on 16 Jul 1875
Section H, No.66, Row 6
Abode 36 Rendle Street Plymouth

Catherine junior was in  Section AH, No.23, Row 36
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Monday 13 December 21 12:50 GMT (UK)
Thanks for all the help. I think I am coming round to the possibility/likelihood that William Henry born in Portsmouth had his separate family there with Margaret KEVERN, but had a few children with Elizabeth GIBBS when he was in Plymouth.
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: rosie99 on Monday 13 December 21 13:05 GMT (UK)
He may only have had one child with Elizabeth Gibbs, the others could have had a different father.  She would not have had to prove who the father was.  Do you have the birth certificates for the others.

Probably only a DNA test could confirm that William Henry was the right candidate for fathering young William
Title: Re: Where to start with Royal Navy research?
Post by: Paul5 on Monday 13 December 21 13:08 GMT (UK)
Yes, all true. I don't have the other birth certs at this time.