Author Topic: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew  (Read 3642 times)

Offline Mean_genie

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #18 on: Wednesday 19 July 17 20:56 BST (UK) »
You are lucky that you can visit Kew whenever you like (within reason!) so you can work out for yourself the approach that suits you best. There's a lot to be said for making a lot of copies and reviewing them later, but there are quite a few cases where you need to order up a contemporary index or calendar volume first before you know what document to order - most records aren't name indexed in Discovery.  You will probably manage to order the wrong document once or twice - which is fine, everyone does it sometimes, even if they don't admit it  ;D - it's all part of the learning process, and it's still worth looking at the 'wrong' document, you might find something interesting in it anyway. I've made a few useful discoveries that way! And document orders only take about 45 minutes to arrive, so you can get the right document fairly quickly, and you'll have learnt something in the process.

If you want to make copies, using your own camera or smartphone is the best way to copy original documents, and you can email copies of digitised records to yourself (a bit fiddly, but it can be done), but you can't use a memory stick. Getting a printout is pretty much the only way to take a copy from microfilm, but the prints are cheap and there is very little microfilm any more so you may never need to use it anyway.

Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #19 on: Thursday 20 July 17 16:16 BST (UK) »
I signed up for the newsletter from TNA and today they told me "We are delighted to announce that we're throwing open our doors on 16 September to participate in Open House London".  I will be an old hand by then.  Thanks again to you all.  I'm going next week!

Martin

Offline dawnsh

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #20 on: Friday 21 July 17 10:49 BST (UK) »
Open House is a great day out as you may get to see 'behind the scenes' as well as front of house, well you do at Westminster.
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Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #21 on: Friday 21 July 17 11:04 BST (UK) »
This will all be so helpful, and not just for me, also for future first-timers. 

Am I right in thinking that they only way to get an electronic version of a document is to photograph the screen?

Martin


Offline KGarrad

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #22 on: Friday 21 July 17 11:08 BST (UK) »
No! You can send an email of the image to your own email address ;D

I think you have to use the TNA fixed camera computers for that. Outside the reading room, but opposite where you pick up documents you have ordered
Garrad (Suffolk, Essex, Somerset), Crocker (Somerset), Vanstone (Devon, Jersey), Sims (Wiltshire), Bridger (Kent)

Offline StevieSteve

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #23 on: Friday 04 August 17 07:03 BST (UK) »
So, how did it go?
Middlesex: KING,  MUMFORD, COOK, ROUSE, GOODALL, BROWN
Oxford: MATTHEWS, MOSS
Kent: SPOONER, THOMAS, KILLICK, COLLINS
Cambs: PRIGG, LEACH
Hants: FOSTER
Montgomery: BREES
Surrey: REEVE

Offline Jeuel

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #24 on: Sunday 06 August 17 16:19 BST (UK) »
Not sure if you've been yet, but to anyone wanting advice about the first visit -
register for Reader's Ticket online and pre-order documents.  Spend time looking on the website to see what is available.

I have found (as examples of what is there)
details of my gt x 3 uncle's trial for murder (found innocent on the grounds of insanity)
enlistment, service and pension records for various gt uncles in the Metropolitan Police
a very complicated court case from the Court of Chancery involving ex's family from 18th century

Not all documents are available when you want.  So I recommend using the computers to search censuses etc or browsing the library - I found a book there showing the floor plans for the house one of my gt grandfathers worked in.  It also has electoral registers, street directories etc arranged by county.

The first time (as with anything) can be daunting, but it's amazing how soon you become an old hand!
Chowns in Buckinghamshire
Broad, Eplett & Pope in St Ervan/St Columb Major, Cornwall
Browning & Moore in Cambridge, St Andrew the Less
Emms, Mealing & Purvey in Cotswolds, Gloucestershire
Barnes, Dunt, Gray, Massingham in Norfolk
Higho in London
Matthews & Nash in Whichford, Warwickshire
Smoothy, Willsher in Coggeshall & Chelmsford, Essex

Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #25 on: Friday 18 August 17 14:53 BST (UK) »
The event I was tying in with my first visit was cancelled so I haven't been yet.  Then I was away in France (Pere Lachaise cemetery and US Normandy cemetery).  I will be going next week.  Experiences to follow...

Martin

Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: I'm daunted by prospects of my first visit to The National Archive at Kew
« Reply #26 on: Thursday 31 August 17 13:58 BST (UK) »
Well I finally plucked up the courage to go to the National Archives at Kew, after months of hesitation, deliberation and nervousness. I don't know what all my fuss was about. It was very simple. I arrived there, talked to a nice lady at the 'start here' desk who told me just to go through to one of the terminals and I sat there for the afternoon. I did find it useful that I heard read on their website about the Discovery program for helping you find what you are looking for. I will be returning before very long. Thank you for all your earlier comments.