March 2012 (meeting held 25 Feb)
A short AGM was held. Mike Murray and Lesley Silvester were returned as Co-Convenors and a small committee consisting of Peter Hamersley, Joan Chiles and Ron Caunce was formed.
The Peter Hamersley gave us an excellent talk on Merchant Seamen, concentrating on his resaerch some years ago into his ancestors' maritime history.
Another brick wall session. We also discussed the idea of a small committee to help run the group and that was agreed to, subject to ratification at the AGM to be held next meeting. Mike gave a preview of his Top Ten Tips for finding lost ancestors that he will be presenting at the Adelaide Congress in March. Five volunteers offered their lost ancstors for study and we had great fun thinking of ways to progress the search. Then we had lunch to finish off the year.
We looked at a lot of London material that's appeared online in recent months, and then Marian Crew gave us a delightful talk on London sugar bakers - most of us did not realise that these were industrial workers in hot sugar houses (80 in London in the 1760s) and the tough conditions that these folk worked under.
June 2011 (meeting held 18 June)
Lesley presented a paper she prepared for the recent genealogy cruise called 'London ancestors - bringing them to life' which emphasised the use of various documents to understand the social history of our forebears.
We checked out some London maps online, looked at Boyds inhabitants of London, and listened to a great talk by Ron Caunce on London Police.
As well as reviewing some great London websites, we discussed the history of Christmas customs and traditions, especially those with a London connection: cards, crackers, trees, food, etc
We had a look at the fascinating history of London burials and now understand a bit more about why it's so hard to find your ancestors' burial records. This copy of the presentation contains links to the websites we looked at.
London burials presentation 655.44 Kb
June 2010 (meeting held 22 May)
Another of our regular brick wall sessions. Even if you don't have a candidate for examination by the group, these meetings are a great opportunity to think of various ways to look for elusive ancestors. And we even managed to solve a couple of old problems!
Lesley gave us some chilling insights to the fate of those caught up in the great plague in London in 1665. Luckily, our ancestors must have survived (or we wouldn't be here). Bills of Mortality and parish records show what happened to those who died.
December 2009 (meeting date 28 November)
Marian Crew gave us a revealing glimpse of life in the London Hospital over the centuries, ranging from its beginnings to more recent times when she worked there.
Lee Ann Atkinson gave us a fascinating insight into the lives and times of the Thames watermen, lightermen and pilots.
We had another Brick Wall session. Six cases were looked at and some notes made of possible approaches, We've summarised them here for posterity.
London Group Minutes - Jun 09 70.13 Kb
Discussion on the Coming of the Railways and their impact on London and its people. Mike presented a brief overview with some nice illustrations and hints on finding your railway ancestors. Email the convenor if you want a copy of the presentation.
Discussion on Social History, particularly the use of the Booth Maps and workhouse books. Mike and Lesley presented three case histories showing how much material can be found to flesh out the lives of some of our 19th century London ancestors.
Presentation on London repositories. Mike and Lesley reported on their recent visits to The National Archives and the London Metropolitan Archives.
Meeting focused on bashing down some London Brick Walls. Members brought along their most difficult cases and the meeting tried to help them by offering up suggestions for further research. Before that we reminded members about Batch Number searching the IGI, and some good search tips for the Census records.
Special on the London Blitz. A panel of four members, all of whom had lived in London during the Second World War, enthralled us with stories. Thanks to Jane Innes,Terry Dean, Malcolm Ginn and Maurice Burns for allowing us to share their memories and their stories.