Author Topic: Too many possible ancestors  (Read 1573 times)

Online Davedrave

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Too many possible ancestors
« on: Sunday 13 January 19 09:29 GMT (UK) »
I have come up against a brick wall in numerous lines of my FH and wonder if it is possible to make any more progress. The problem, which Iím sure is a common one, is that there are just too many individuals who could be the parents of someone. At present I am looking for the baptism of a William Hunt, almost certainly in Leicestershire and quite probably in Leicester. Using the age from the 1851 Census, I immediately hit the buffers, because there are two possible baptisms c. 1790 in parish churches which take about a minute to walk between, and if William had been born outside the town, there are many more possibilities.

The Hickins of Warwickshire are even worse, there are millions of them.

I have looked for a clue in the given names of children but found none. And in this social class, wills donít exist. So are there any ploys I might try?

I suppose I should be grateful that I havenít yet found a Smith in my FH ;D
ESSEX: Cramphorn Raven Sams Sayers Taylor Whybrow; GLOS: Beacham/Beauchamp; HERTS: Chamberlain Chuck; LEICS: Allot Bennet Bentley Crisp Godfrey Greasley Hunt Hurst Jarvis Lane Lea Light Seel Taylor Woodward Wright; LINCS: Buswell Lambert Mitchell Muse Sayers; OXON: Barnett Beacham; STAFFS: Hodgkins Jarvis; SURREY: Light; WARKS: Astley/Chesshire Bradbury Hicken/Hickin Hudson; WORCS: Ballinger Beauchamp Laight

Offline Kevwood

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Re: Too many possible ancestors
« Reply #1 on: Sunday 13 January 19 10:10 GMT (UK) »
Hi, few more details please? How you found a marriage in the parish registers, may give father, also death certificate might help.
Census Information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

wood,west,williams,morgan,sollars,hawker,snell,roach,clark,symons. In bristol,fremington,instow,rhymney,colyton

Offline JohninSussex

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Re: Too many possible ancestors
« Reply #2 on: Sunday 13 January 19 10:25 GMT (UK) »
Hi, few more details please?

Don't need more details. I read the question as a general ask for suggested techniques. 

The fact is that when you get back before registration you are reliant on what details can be found in church documents, plus other useful sources.  As Kevwood says, if you have two (to take your example) William Hunt born around the same time, you presumably have their fathers' (and mothers'?) names, then if you find a William Hunt son of X getting married that may well be the same one.  If that's not the marrriage of your ancestor, it increases the chances that the other Willliam is yours.
Next you might find some wills. Either a will of one of these characters, or someone else who mentions the target person perhpas as a beneficiary.  That record might give his parent or sibling's name(s) which helps narrow down the options.
And as you have already tried, someone born in the 1790s might still be living in 1851 (or somewhat less useful 1841) and be listed in the census with family members.  Or if not they might have a burial record although many of these don't give age, parentage or anything else useful.

Others will no doubt mention some other techniques.

The fact is, you are much less likely to ever be certain of the parentage of a William Hunt (or a Mary Smith) than an ancestor called Josiah Wiveliscombe or whatever.
Rutter, Sampson, Swinerd, Head, Redman in Kent.  Others in Cheshire, Manchester, Glos/War/Worcs.
RUTTER family and Matilda Sampson's Will:

Offline Kevwood

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Re: Too many possible ancestors
« Reply #3 on: Sunday 13 January 19 10:35 GMT (UK) »
Using the age from the 1851 Census, I immediately hit the buffers, because there are two possible baptisms c. 1790 in parish churches which take about a minute to walk between, and if William had been born outside the town, there are many more possibilities.


I have looked for a clue in the given names of children but found none. And in this social class, wills donít exist.

Got him in the 1851 therefore more details would be helpful such as occupation as it may be helpful finding him elsewhere, stated that there are no wills available.
Census Information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

wood,west,williams,morgan,sollars,hawker,snell,roach,clark,symons. In bristol,fremington,instow,rhymney,colyton


Offline Kevwood

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Re: Too many possible ancestors
« Reply #4 on: Sunday 13 January 19 10:44 GMT (UK) »
One of the best routes is to try and bring the possibles forward, as in look for them in the censuses after, or follow other siblings forward, occasionally find nieces and nephews with them, then you may be able to rule them in or out and hopefully leave just the one set of parents.
Census Information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

wood,west,williams,morgan,sollars,hawker,snell,roach,clark,symons. In bristol,fremington,instow,rhymney,colyton

Offline rosie99

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Re: Too many possible ancestors
« Reply #5 on: Sunday 13 January 19 10:47 GMT (UK) »
Using the age from the 1851 Census, I immediately hit the buffers, because there are two possible baptisms c. 1790 in parish churches which take about a minute to walk between, and if William had been born outside the town, there are many more possibilities.


I have looked for a clue in the given names of children but found none. And in this social class, wills donít exist.

Got him in the 1851 therefore more details would be helpful such as occupation as it may be helpful finding him elsewhere, stated that there are no wills available.

There is already a post mentioning William so probably best to continue on that (reply 4)  :)
https://www.rootschat.com/forum/index.php?topic=804177.
Census information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline Kevwood

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Re: Too many possible ancestors
« Reply #6 on: Sunday 13 January 19 10:55 GMT (UK) »
Thanks rosie99, although that's confused me as I'm reading that William Hunt was born in 1821 not 1790 on that thread?
Census Information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

wood,west,williams,morgan,sollars,hawker,snell,roach,clark,symons. In bristol,fremington,instow,rhymney,colyton

Offline Chilternbirder

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Re: Too many possible ancestors
« Reply #7 on: Sunday 13 January 19 11:02 GMT (UK) »
As soon as you get that far back it becomes an issue for a lot of us. I have one line where there are several eighteenth century people with the same name and similar age in the parish. I agree about trying to work forward although this isn't a technique that I have had positive results with although it has shown me where I have made a mistake once or twice.

I have annotated my trees in several places with issues over identifying parentage. Sometimes I carry on with a "probable" line, if I am less certain I just leave it with a note.

In my Ancestry trees I use the suffix section of the name to flag names where I am less than 100% certain and want to find more data.
Crabb from Laurencekirk / Fordoun and Scurry from mid Essex

Offline Finley 1

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Re: Too many possible ancestors
« Reply #8 on: Sunday 13 January 19 11:03 GMT (UK) »
My tricks are:

places -- family names -- occupations -- etc..

The Scottish ones can give a lot more information -  Witness can be seen more than once in the family   they use siblings and friends over again.. and  then there is the Rev or Vicar .. that is the same person....

I HAVE Smiths.  !!!!!  and they are the Gypsy Smiths of Northampton .. so they are Hard..

xin