Happy new year, fellow truthseekers. I'm writing this a few hours before the new year (in New Zealand!) before the arrival of more house guests.
We finish the year at 52,749 people in our database, having added very nearly 20,000 during the past year, with a total of over 370,000 facts relating to those people. I look back and think: wow! Usually I say this at the end of my notes, but let me say upfront this time: thank you for your continuing support. We could not have done this without the willing co-operation of many of the 429 people now registered on the site and receiving this note. What started out as an exercise focused on Norfolk in England has now spread worldwide; only one-sixth of the people in the database were born in Norfolk, a proportion that continues to decline.
I know I've said it before, but it's heartening to get notes from people we've not heard from in a while, enclosing a small extra piece of information they've managed to add to their store of knowledge.
During the month we connected up three different sets of distant cousins whose families had drifted apart. If we've done that for you and you had a pleasant experience or learned something new about your family, please do let us know.
Connecting up bits of the database
Because of the way we work across geographies, at this point focusing mostly on the 19th century in the UK, we inevitably find that we have disconnected pieces of families that we are able to join up as we work back. This last month my cousin Ian managed to connect 14 different chunks of the database into one single whole. So, if your family hails from the Wickhamford area of Worcestershire, please do check online and see whether we've managed to link your forebears into a much larger group. Don't forget to use the Ancestors and Descendents tabs at the top of each individual person's record, and that you can adjust the number of generations shown.
Have you ever wondered how British parish boundaries intersect with county boundaries, Registration Districts, Poor Law Unions and so on? Well, I spotted this month that the Church of Latter Day Saints has added a great new facility to their site, mapping all kinds of local boundaries in England in 1851. It's available here http://maps.familysearch.org/.
Hopefully, sometime soon they'll do it for the US and other places, and show the situation at different times. That would be wonderful!
Publicizing our study
All being well, the article I wrote for Family Tree Magazine in the UK will be out by the time the next monthly update rolls around.
And, if you are near London, please come and see my session at the Who Do You Think You Are? Live exhibition at Olympia on Saturday, February 25 at 3pm. I'm not yet sure of my travel plans for February, but for the rest of that day at least I'll be at or near the Guild of One-Name Studies stand. Do say Hello if you are there. The exhibition's website is here: http://www.whodoyouthinkyouarelive.com/
A very happy and prosperous new year to you and yours