Saturday, July 29, 2006

Another week's news

Another week passed without posting – was it a quiet week for the study?

Actually, no. I received 18 Parry related e-mails, sent 13 such e-mails (a couple were combined responses since several of those received were from the same person, passing on useful snippets)(And I still have three to reply to).

On Tuesday I noticed Ancestry had added the ability to search by parents or spouse name to the 1871 England census. By the end of the day it was on most of the UK census databases, as well as showing in the search results. This will certainly make identifying people from the index much easier, but is it enough to justify re-extracting? No, although sooner or later I am going to want to code such relationships into my files. (And, having continued to add the full details to the Herefordshire censuses yesterday, and been reminded of what a slow process it is, I wouldn’t be surprised if Ancestry have the full details transcribed before I do!)

I e-mailed Cheshire Record Office on Thursday to ask about a marriage bond. They do have the relevant bond but also have a minimum charge for copying, so I had a look at what else they hold, in case it was worth obtaining copies of other documents at the same time. That led to me extracting the Parrys from:
Railway staff records (243 Parrys)
Overleigh Cemetery (304 Parrys)
Freemen of Chester (82 Parrys)

A website for "Unassisted passengers to Victoria, Australia" was also posted on the Guild forum. I think I have looked at this before, but did not appear to have extracted the details so I did that. Currently there are 500 Parry entries but, according to other Guild members, they found more results this time than when they previously visited the site, so it is probably a site to return to.

In dealing with one of the e-mail queries, I came across the Australian Dictionary of Biography, which contains 40 references to Parrys, although only nine are actual biographies. The rest are references to Parrys mentioned in other people’s biographies. Still useful though.

Another query received was an interesting one relating to a Parry-Parry marriage in 1903 – which demonstrated how useful the Ancestry indexes are these days, since I was able to trace one of the branches all the way back to 1841. Of course, having names such as Violet Faith Parry and Victor Townley Parry did make it easier. Having the brother of the father staying with the family in 1871 also helped – although his name was just William, the fact that he was a partially sighted engine driver and retained both the disability and his occupation throughout the two earlier censuses made identifying the father, a plain John, much easier.

Oh, and I still haven’t mentioned what I found in 1837online! It was a Kelly’s Handbook for 1901. One of the entries in it related to Thomas Croose Parry, who is from a “known” family in Herefordshire. The entry mentioned that his wife was the daughter of Charles Lane from Liverpool. Since all we had previously known about her was that she was born in Brazil, this reference has now enabled me to identify her, with her family, in the 1861 and 1871 censuses, as well as prompting me to look for their marriage, which I found on FreeBMD.

I guess the reason this was so significant (apart from helping a fellow researcher) was that it came just after the suggestion that the two Parry families, from Redmarley and from Eastnor, might be connected. Both of these families have connections with South America - one with Argentina, the other with Brazil.

So it just set me thinking, not so much about Parrys emigrating, but about Parry involvement elsewhere in the world, perhaps through occupation or trade, which might not leave such clear evidence as them actually appearing in the other countries. A whole new area to think about!

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