Are You Related To Royalty Or Did Your Ancestors Work For The Monarch? With enough time and patience I can tell you that I could prove everyone with British ancestry is related to royalty! It might be a very tenuous relationship, something along the lines of 21st cousin 36 times removed, but a relationship never the less. I think the DNA might be well diluted from such a distant connection! Over the years I have been commissioned by a few clients to prove such a relationship and prove it I did. Mind you they had to have deep pockets as the number of hours I had to work to make the connection were considerable. Why you would want to pay a large sum to prove such a distant relationship is beyond me, but it takes all sorts to make the world!
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With the world’s eyes on Windsor over this weekend my mind recalled that FindMyPast has records that might help you prove (or otherwise) a family legend of a royal ancestor or two.
British Knights Of The Realm & Commonwealth Index
This collection has entries dating back to pre 1500’s and is updated every 6 months when new appointments are made in the Queen’s New Year Honours and Queen’s Birthday Honours lists. The data has been compiled from several sources such as Book of Knights published in 1885 and The Knights of England 1906. The information offered by this database is as follows:-
- Biography, which often includes rank or position/occupation
- Birth year
- Death year (as applicable)
- Award – Type of knighthood / order of chivalry
- Year & date of award(s)
- Remarks – often includes where an individual was dubbed
This collection is fully indexed so very easy to search.
- Henry Pottinger
- Major General, created a Baronet 1840, Governor of Hong Kong 1843, Governor of Cape of Good Hope 1846-47
- Born 1789
- Died 1856
- Awarded CGB – Knight/Dame Grand Cross of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath
- Awarded 2 December 1842
- Entry in Dictionary of National Biography
Periodical Source Index (PERSI)
This comprehensive index is made up of articles and records in a wide range of publications. It is added to regularly and is a great source of genealogical information. It is a fantastic lead into material that you might not easily come across anywhere else as some of the publications have a very narrow readership and may not be held by public libraries. Once an entry is found there is information on where the article can be found and where copies of the publication are held. On some entries the article has been digitised and can be read online.
- Henry Pottinger
- Governor of Hong Kong 1843
- Article published in North Irish Roots Volume 8 Issue 2 1997
- Publication held at Allen County Public Library, Ft. Wayne IN; Family History Library, SLC Utah; ibrary Of Congress, Washington DC;
Royal Household Staff 1526-1924
These records cover all Royal residences between 1526 – 1924 and the originals are held at the Royal Archives, Windsor Castle. The records fall into three categories.
- Royal Household Establishment Lists
- Royal Household Index Sheets
- Royal Household Payment and Employment Lists
As you can imagine the early records are going to be less than complete, but when you enter the late Georgian and Victorian periods a more complete account can be found. The records also include tradesmen who supplied the household with goods and services so if you have a family following a trade close by a royal residence then this database is worth a search. The example below is of Anna Maria Ansell, Anna has 40 entries in the records because she received payments on a yearly basis. So if you find an entry do go looking for more.
You can expect to find the following details if you find an ancestor.
- Dates of employment
- Salary or wages
- Pension or other payments made to the employee
- Career history
- Date of death
Anna Maria Ansell of no. 5 College Place, Kings Road, Chelsea given an allowance from the Royal Household of £20. She is the widow of a night porter who worked in the Royal Household. As I mentioned above Anna goes on to have another 40 documents in the collection.
I found some records that might refer to Anna’s husband – George Ansell, a night porter and firelighter, salary £55, died 10 April 1842 (1842 was the date of the first document referring to Anna as a widow).
Are You Related To Royalty Or Did Your Ancestors Work For The Monarch? – Other Sources
Here is a book and a free database that you might want to look at and see if anything fits in with your family tree.
“Americans of royal descent. A collection of genealogies of American families whose lineage is traced to the legitimate issue of kings”
Written by Charles H. Browning was first published in 1882. A 2nd edition of this book was released in 1891 and is available online free at the Hathi Trust website. Click Here to access the book. The book can be read online or downloaded. The book contains pedigrees of over 100 American families who claim descent from a variety of Kings and Queens. The first is of the Woodhull family who believe they are descended from William the Conqueror.
I intend to write about this website more fully at a later date, but I’m including it here as it is something you should search even if you don’t think you have royalty! It goes some way towards my comment at the beginning of this post that all of us are related to royalty even if rather distantly. Put your family name in The Peerage and you may be surprised what turns up! CLICK HERE to access The Peerage.
Are You Related To Royalty Or Did Your Ancestors Work For The Monarch? – Summary
So are you related to royalty or did your ancestors work for the monarch? I can tell you that as far as I have researched none of my ancestors worked at a royal palace. As for relationship to royalty I am sure if I dug deep enough I could find some connection, but my agricultural labourers, tailors, Covent Garden porters, soldiers and their families keep me quite busy enough without going looking for extremely distant cousins!
Do let me know if you find someone in these records whether they are a Prince or kitchen maid I would love to hear about them.
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