Each of us has up to sixty-four great-great-great-great-grandparents, but only my children have the sixty-four here. Rather than tracing back a long list of names, this site looks at the lives of one generation and offers a glimpse into British 19th century life. It delights me to think that, in the years leading up to the end of the Georgian Age in 1830, all of them were alive, spread out across this island from Edinburgh to Devon, and yet most of them did not know each other.
None of them is famous, but most are skilled tradesmen or at least literate, so they have all left records behind. Differing attitudes to illegitimacy; desperate attempts to be accepted into the middle classes; crime; national events; all form regular parts of their stories. Together they form a fascinating picture.
Genealogy has two attractions for me: the social history and the detective work. If some people just want to stick together larger and larger trees, even when all logic tells them that they cannot be true, let them; but they are missing the point and the enjoyment. Perhaps it shouldn't make us any more interested in the past simply because a distant relative is involved, but it does. And if the journey there involves putting together several separate pieces of evidence, so much the better: finding Richard Gibb's parents was an example of that.
Have I been fortunate in being able to find out so much? Probably; although the number of unpromising starts that eventually led to interesting places suggests that others could have similar success. That George Knott's biography is the longest and most detailed is partly down to his living in London; but more so because it was the first to be written and had the most time spent on it.
This site crashed fairly recently. All the main pages have been re-written on a new host, but the secondary pages will take some time to restore.
If you want to contact me please use rjk AT canford DOT com