Friday, March 16, 2007

New UK Genealogy Series Online

BBC Radio 4 has launched a new genealogy show called Tracing Your Roots. The show started on March 12 and will run every Monday for six weeks from 4.30pm to 5pm. It will be available as a download for seven days after each episode via the “Listen Again” link at BBC Radio 4.

I listened to the first show while I was scanning photos and quite enjoyed it. But, I am one of those people who think everything sounds better with a British accent.

The show is hosted by Sally Magnusson, who authored Dreaming of Iceland, which explored her own roots and cultural heritage. The
March 12 show includes genealogist and historian Nick Barratt. Nick is a contributor to Your Family Tree Magazine, my favorite UK genealogy publication.

The show will cover tracing a family tree from scratch as well as finding
out what our ancestor’s daily lives were like.

Each episode will cover a particular UK archive (12 March - Parish Records) and case studies (12 March - The Alarming Case of Murder by Clotted Cream and Family Memories, and a musical dynasty) that provide examples linking family and social history.

The Alarming Case of Murder by Clotted Cream

A family tale of 'death by clotted cream' led Jane Clements on a detective hunt back to early 19th century Somerset. Parish records in Taunton revealed how a woman called Elizabeth Reed was murdered by her husband using clotted cream laced with arsenic. A newspaper article from the time provided all the gruesome details of the event and the subsequent court case. Jane was told by a great aunt, now deceased, that she’s related to the murderer – but how can she find out for sure? Nick Barratt advises.

Parish Records - a goldmine for genealogists

Reporter Lesley Hilton visits St John The Baptist Church in Broughton,
Lancashire with local historian Andy Gritt to find out what Parish Records
can reveal about our ancestors and the historical context in which they
started keeping these records.

Family memories, and a musical dynasty

Sally discovers the potential goldmine of family information held in the
long memories of your oldest relatives. Jazz musician Al Kirtley's
recording of an interview with his 90-year-old mum sent him on a trail
back through time which revealed that music runs in the Kirtley family.
Along the way, Al turned up the manuscript for a Music Hall song which
was performed, reputedly “with great success”, by an ancestor in the
late 19th century. Listen again to hear Al's fine rendition of this
rumbustious song.

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