Boer War Records online

File:Caton-Woodville 1.jpgOur good friends at FindMyPast have just added some Boer War records to their military collection. This time round they are all medal rolls which are useful genealogy records. The additions are

  • Queen’s South Africa medal rolls for: Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers (Militia), Ceylon Planters Rifle Corps, Maritzburg Ambulance Corps, Natal Field Artillery and Natal Volunteer Hotchkiss Gun Detachment
  • King’s South Africa rolls for: 9th Lancers, 12th Lancers, 10th Hussars, 11th Hussars and Imperial Yeomanry
  • Talana clasp for 1st Battalion Royal Irish Fusiliers, Leicestershire Regiment and King’s Royal Rifle Corps

Also they have completed the Wepener clasp roll

We have Meurig Jones to thank for allowing FindMyPast to offer these records to subscribers.

image – The Boer War by Richard Caton Woodville 1856 – 1927

Recommendation for Military Honours & Awards 1935-1990 Ancestry Web Search

Ancestry Web SearchApologises to MadAboutGenealogy readers for my not posting last week I was putting the last touches to my presentations for the Unlock the Past cruise plus I had a host of non-genealogy events and there just wasn’t enough hours in the day to do everything that needed to be done!!

Anyway I’m back Smile have added a new feature to their site, it could be viewed as a crafty way to add content at no cost to them, but let’s be charitable and say that they are simply alerting us all to what else is on the internet which might of help to family historians.

I am talking about the Web Search feature, basically it is a search engine link which searches non Ancestry databases and if a match comes up it connects through to the external website which holds the information.

The first offering is the “Recommendation for Military Honours & Awards 1935-1990” which is held by The National Archives.

I entered the name Pottinger to see how the system worked. It came up with 2 entries and I chose the one for Frederick Pottinger and clicked on the View Record button. The usual Ancestry page came up with the following information …

Name Frederick Pottinger
Publication Date 27 July 1944
Rank Corporal
Service Number 2047371
Regiment or Unit 1 Battalion The Northamptonshire Regiment
Theatre of Combat Burma
Award Military Medal
Date of Action or Award 1944

A link to the National Archives website is at the end of the details. Clicking on this brings up a warning that you are leaving Ancestry for an external site, getting rid of this pop-up takes you to the TNA site.

The National Archives site gives you the same info that Ancestry has, but with the opportunity to purchase a copy of recommendation document in this case 2 pages. A fee of £3.36 if charged for this, but the document can be downloaded immediately the payment has gone through.

All in all quite a handy feature as it will alert researchers to other documents that might be of help in tracing your ancestors. It will be interesting what other archives are added in the future.



The Times of India BMD Announcements 1920

clip_image002The Families in British India Society has just put online Births, Marriage & Death announcements from The Times of India newspaper for the year 1920. The members of this society work very hard to bring to the web an amazing array of material concerning families who lived in India.

Karachi 1866

Many of us will have ancestors who spent time in India and the FBIS website should be your first port of call if you think that some of your family may have travel to Indian subcontinent.

The FBIS website offers visitors to the website access to a database of over one million names plus a wiki of background information. New recruits to the society are always welcome and have access to additional resources and fellow member interests.

As always the genealogists friend Wikipedia has a good article on the British Raj 1858 – 1947.

New Military Records Online

Sample record for Imperial Yeomanry, soldiers documents, South African War 1899-1902 (WO128) on has added some new records to their Military Collection. Militia Service Records 1806 – 1915 and Chelsea Pensioners Service Records 1760 – 1913 have been available for some while and very useful they have been to my research. Now there are new additions which should add  to my family history as I think my grandfather was in the Imperial Yeomanry.

  • Royal Hospital, Chelsea: pensioners’ discharge documents 1760-1887
  • Royal Hospital, Chelsea: pensioners’ discharge documents, foreign regiments 1816-1817
  • War Office: Imperial Yeomanry, soldiers’ documents, South African War 1899-1902
  • Royal Hospital, Chelsea: documents of soldiers awarded deferred pensions 1838-1896

If you do find one of your ancestors featuring in this new set of documents you should be able to inspect the Attestation Form and also the Discharge Papers, these are the forms that were filled in at the beginning and end of their term in the army.

Name, age, previous occupation, next of kin, marriage, children and appearance are some of the personal details the army collected about their soldiers. There is also details of their service, rank, campaigns fought, medal, medical history and conduct. Often army records hold details not found anywhere else or at least not easily found ………  such as my grandfather had a wife and two sons elsewhere that no-one ever knew about !!

WW1 & WW2 Memorial Books 1914 – 1945

Memorial Books, 1914-1945Ancestry has just released a set of three books that will add greatly to London researchers genealogy. They comprise details of people from the University of London Officers Training Corp and London City Council  who served in WW1 and residents of Croydon Borough who served in WW2. Details vary, but may contain the following information.

  • name
  • birth date
  • residence
  • military unit(s)
  • rank
  • dates of service
  • date, place, and cause of death
  • place of burial
  • POWs
  • honours and awards
  • photograph

Good see that such valuable, but generally unknown sources are becoming available on the internet.