Author Topic: Completed - many thanks Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue  (Read 6065 times)

Offline JoJoBuggins

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Hi

Don't know if I have put this on the relevant board

This morning I received a letter from a complete stranger, regarding my ancestors in Yorkshire

I am a member of a couple of family history societies, and the most recent one which I joined, in their journal which goes out quarterely have printed my address and member interests (that doesn't bother me)

If the person in question had put that he had seen my interests in the journal and had quoted is membership no, don't think I would have felt so concerned.  If this person is genuine and he probably is, why didnt he explain in his letter that he was a member of the society.

I have contacted the Family History Society in question to tell them about it and to see if they do have this person as a member.

If not, then I am at a loss as to where he got my address from

A puzzled and slightly worried Jo  :-\
Verity - All Yorkshire & Scotland<br />Waring - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Hey - Silkstone, Yorkshire<br />Dykes - Yorkshire (Leeds & York)<br />Wyrill - Yorkshire (North Yorks)<br />Anderson - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Andrews - Yorkshire<br />Marland - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Hanson - Yorkshire & Notts
Lunn - Yorkshire
Leng - Yorkshire

Offline ~Rachel~

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Re: Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue
« Reply #1 on: Friday 01 June 07 13:17 BST (UK) »
If you know the name it's quite easy to do an address search on one of the BT or 192 type websites, I always use it for my grandparents as I keep forgetting their postcode! If you have a slightly unusual surname they could have just done that?
Waite, Marchant, Nash, Goddard, Pocock, Hiles, Switzer, Larondie, Harris, Radford, Monger, Harper, Harris, Sixsmith, Fitzgerald.

Offline JoJoBuggins

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Re: Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue
« Reply #2 on: Friday 01 June 07 13:20 BST (UK) »
Hi

I havent got an unusual surname, and this person is supposedly a Dr, so would have thought he would have known how to write a letter :)

The Family history society in question, if you see a members interest on the website you have to go through them to send or ask for any information, all that is displayed is your member no

Jo
Verity - All Yorkshire & Scotland<br />Waring - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Hey - Silkstone, Yorkshire<br />Dykes - Yorkshire (Leeds & York)<br />Wyrill - Yorkshire (North Yorks)<br />Anderson - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Andrews - Yorkshire<br />Marland - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Hanson - Yorkshire & Notts
Lunn - Yorkshire
Leng - Yorkshire

Offline Ecneps

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Re: Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue
« Reply #3 on: Friday 01 June 07 13:27 BST (UK) »
Hi Jo,

Why don't you write back and ask him where he got your address, how he is connected to the family, and what he actually wants to know?  (If he enclosed a S.A.E.)  Perhaps he just forgot to mention his society membership.  If he's genuine, he won't mind your asking.
You didn't actually say whether he had information to offer you or was just asking for information.  He may have something worth following up and it would be a shame to miss out on that - but I wouldn't tell him anything until you know more, he already has your address, so you woudn't be telling him anything he didn't already know.

Barbara
`There are two lasting bequests we can give our children -  One is roots - the other is wings`- Hodding Carter

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Offline nanny jan

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Re: Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue
« Reply #4 on: Friday 01 June 07 13:35 BST (UK) »
Hi Jo,

Some family history societies exchange journals and he might have found your details that way.  I have found fellow researchers that way as my  society exchanges journals with several UK and abroad societies.

Nanny Jan
Howard , Viney , Kingsman, Pain/e, Rainer/ Rayner, Barham, George, Wakeling (Catherine), Vicary (Frederick)   all LDN area/suburbs  Ottley/ MDX,
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Offline JoJoBuggins

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Re: Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue
« Reply #5 on: Friday 01 June 07 13:37 BST (UK) »
Barbara

Thanks for your reply

I feel that he is genuine, he doesnt offer me much information, just the surname and area where is ancestors come from, but he did enclose a SAE  :)

It just shocked me a little when I opened it, try to be so careful who I/we give our contact details to.

As I said earlier if he would have put down that he was a member it wouldnt have bothered me so much

I will do as you say and reply

Thanks

Jo
Verity - All Yorkshire & Scotland<br />Waring - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Hey - Silkstone, Yorkshire<br />Dykes - Yorkshire (Leeds & York)<br />Wyrill - Yorkshire (North Yorks)<br />Anderson - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Andrews - Yorkshire<br />Marland - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Hanson - Yorkshire & Notts
Lunn - Yorkshire
Leng - Yorkshire

Offline JoJoBuggins

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Re: Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue
« Reply #6 on: Friday 01 June 07 14:05 BST (UK) »
Nanny jan

Thanks for your reply

All I can put it down to him forgetting to put is member no on, is being so excited to find somebody else researching that name ;)

Jo
Verity - All Yorkshire & Scotland<br />Waring - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Hey - Silkstone, Yorkshire<br />Dykes - Yorkshire (Leeds & York)<br />Wyrill - Yorkshire (North Yorks)<br />Anderson - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Andrews - Yorkshire<br />Marland - Yorkshire (WRY)<br />Hanson - Yorkshire & Notts
Lunn - Yorkshire
Leng - Yorkshire

Offline JAP

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Re: Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue
« Reply #7 on: Friday 01 June 07 14:15 BST (UK) »
Jo,

Wise to be untrusting and very very careful.

But not to be totally untrusting!

If it worries you (I don't bother - I give out my own real email address without any concern and have had no problems) use an anonymous address such as Hotmail.

I'd certainly start to trust someone who encloses an SAE - but who knows.

And you certainly don't have to put your own snail mail address on your reply ...

JAP

Offline casalguidi

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Re: Should I be concerned receiving a letter out of the blue
« Reply #8 on: Friday 01 June 07 14:22 BST (UK) »
Hi Jo

For those of us who got into family history before the world wide web came about, regular mail (advertising in magazines, research directories and with family history societies) was the only way to make contact with others sharing research interests so, personally speaking, I wouldn't consider it unusual having received many such letters over the years ie. quite brief in the initial instance.

On the other hand, I remember writing to a gentleman once and he was quite concerned about my knowing his name/address and research interests (having forgotten that they had been published in a family history society journal some time previous).

If you have any concerns just give brief details and ask him where/how he received/saw your research interests.

Good luck

Casalguidi :)


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