View Full Version : Birth - Cape of Good Hope 1779
Does anyone know how to look for records for births 1779 in South Africa.
Anybody any bright ideas Why would somebody be born there??. Battles ? gold? diamonds?
He later pops up in the Channel Islands .
07-10-2009, 4:33 PM
I have transferred your post to the South Africa Forum. You may find some leads in some of the links posted towards the end of this post (http://www.british-genealogy.com/forums/showthread.php?t=21140)
Sadly it is too late for your purposes, but I have been transcribing births, deaths and marriages from the South African Commercial Advertiser, which started in 1824. A large number of the births and marriages were for members of the East India Company - the Cape of Good Hope was a stopping off place en route to India, and also a place where many seem to have spent their leave. Also of course there were many mariners whose wives sailed with them and children were sometimes born when a ship was in port at the Cape for provisions or repairs.
PS If you like to post the name of the person, I can have a look in various sources I have at home, but I don't have too much for that period.
08-10-2009, 9:49 AM
Hi, I have in my tree a chap born Cape of Good Hope, his father was in the Army there,I got the information from his army papers.
Good luck with your search.
Our man was named William ROMIA and he was born in Cape of Good Hope in 1779. His wifes name was Mary (no maiden name) and she was not English. The only record I can find of them is in the 1841 English census when they were living in Devon. We do know that they had children and the eldest was born in St Peters Port Guernsey, Channel Islands in 1806. Any help would be really appreciated
08-10-2009, 3:05 PM
I haven't found anything on him at the Cape, but I see that on the 1851 census (HO107; Piece: 1879; Folio: 502; Page: 8) he is described as a "Pensioner Greenwich", would seem to indicate a career in the Navy or the Marines. On the grounds that these things often ran in families, I take it that you have seen this (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/documentsonline/details-result.asp?Edoc_Id=6849114&queryType=1&resultcount=1) and this (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/documentsonline/details-result.asp?Edoc_Id=8098923&queryType=1&resultcount=1) at TNA Documents Online?
Otherwise the Records of Greenwich Hospital (http://www.grenhosp.org.uk/) appear to be at Kew
Thanks for your reply. Yes I do have a copy of those documents bur short of visiting the archives not much else is available.
We are in France until mid-November and then we will go to Kew on our return.
The thing that we don't understand is at what stage in his life did he retire to become a pensioner and did he live at Greenwich in the early days. Then we are interested to know if his father was a sailor or marine stationed in cape of Good Hope in 1779 when William was born. I think that history is also for Kew to resolve.
Again thanks for your reply
10-10-2009, 12:16 PM
The thing that we don't understand is at what stage in his life did he retire to become a pensioner
He could have chosen to take up his Greenwich pension at any time, not necessarily as soon as he left the service. Many retired naval men worked in other trades and took up their pension much later in life.
and did he live at Greenwich in the early days.
As you have found him in Plymouth in the census, he was probably an out-pensioner, though that's not to say he was not in Greenwich Hospital at some point. Pensioners went in and out of Greenwich far more than people realise, depending on health, money, family circumstances etc. But he is not found in the online indexes to the hospital's entry books (google Asplin Military History Resources and select Nominal Rolls), so unless he entered before 1824 he's more likely to have been "out".
Then we are interested to know if his father was a sailor or marine stationed in cape of Good Hope in 1779 when William was born. I think that history is also for Kew to resolve.
The records are unlikely to tell you much if anything about his father, but Greenwich Hospital documents are full of unexpected titbits, so you never know :)
There is apparently no service record for him in ADM 29, and without the name of a ship it will be harder to track his career. It can be done however from pension registers, ships' musters and other sources, given lots of time and patience. ;)
If you're contemplating doing this research yourself at Kew, this Research Guide (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/RdLeaflet.asp?sLeafletID=39) and this other Research Guide (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/RdLeaflet.asp?sLeafletID=41) should help you plan.
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