Yesterday Jen over at Conference Keeper hosted another fascinating round of #GenChat at Twitter This time the discussion point was geography.
Now there were a series of questions and I might not have noted them all down in the order they were presented. Apologies for my slackness, I was trying to keep up with the Tweets!
What is Geography?
When I went to school geography was about exploring places and what happens there, why and how and when. All those key questions that really we are, or at least should be applying to genealogy. Geography gives us an opportunity to explore the location of our ancestors, how they lived and worked. It enables us to break through those lists of names and dates and drill down to a depth of more detail.
Understanding Border Changes over time
This is really important. It might be a simple case of a town essentially being in a County. I have a family member who lived in Stony Stratford in Buckinghamshire. The town has also been in Oxfordshire. That border change might influence our ancestors lives for lots of reasons. In some cases, towns on the borders of various Countries can overnight find themselves in another Country – look at Countries such as Italy and Switzerland.
At this point there were various resources listed and therefore I am simply going to present them here, at this point I have not had chance to explore them all
- Getty Research
- Institute of Name Studies based at Nottingham University (UK)
- Cymru 1900 Wales Project
- Google Books
- Local Museums and Archives
- Historical Associations
- Archaeological Societies
- Specific archives – mining might have some general information
- GENUKI – UK
- The Phillimore Atlas and Index of Parish Registers – fabulous, but expensive!
- Ordnance Survey
- Google Maps
- What sort of trade was there?
- Mining – coal, tin
- Transportation – railway town?
- When did events happen?
- This enables researchers to get a sense of time and place within their geographical research area – this could be things like
- Religious changes/Persecutions of religious groups = migration pattens
- Results of wars
- First World War
- Second World War
- Post Second World War – Israel, Palestine, Korea, Vietnam for example
- Understanding terminology – Hamlet, village, town, township, county, state etc
- Family Search Wiki
- Local Societies
- Tourist information centers and resources
- Flood plains
- Bush fires
- Other Disasters
- Perhaps a disaster has left a monument – example – Lockerbie Bombing 1991 This event created not only the monument, and a link between Scotland and the US, but Lockerbie has changed as a result.
- Transportation – no highways – walked across the fields
- Who did they work for?
- Who owned the land – deeds, land records, tithe maps
- Some agricultural labours moved location because of the land owner
- Can you obtain copies easily of material?
- Is there a catalog
- Is it reliable or hidden gems!
Here is the GenChat Schedule so you don’t miss out on the fun!