No Irish swearing please

A first cousin (twice removed) Mary Ellen Watts married Edward Arthur Feek in 1905. Edward’s parents were Elijah and Harriet (maiden name Meek). Can you guess the most frequent transcription error for the surname, perhaps from the title of this piece? Yes, Feck, although for one particularly badly written census record (1881) it comes out as Teek.

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Making the news makes family history

This post was going to be about bringing together disparate sources to build a picture, but has evolved into one on the increasing availability and usefulness of newspaper archives.

The British Newspaper Archive website went live late 2011, but while I have yet to use this, cuttings are increasingly adding to the data available. And the new series of Who Do You Think You Are? has featured newspaper extracts in each of the three episodes so far, with a particularly strong impact on Patrick Stewart’s view of his “angry” and abusive father when a cutting mentions shell-shock during evacuation from Cherbourg in 1940.

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