PDA

View Full Version : Help English system is foreign territory



joette
01-12-2005, 4:22 PM
Hi having spent many years happily ploughing my way through the Scottish records & lucky having them all live die,marry in Scotland with a few detours throughout the Empire I know face the English system.
The "ones" I am looking for are all twentieth century post WW2 & wondering how I start?
I am particularly interested in my great-uncle who was a translator during the Nuremberg Trials,a Major in the USA Army & who died in hampstead post 1956 but I have no idea where or when.I wonder if there was a Will as he was never married & would like to know who benefited from his estate & where he is buried.With a name like Ross I can anticipate a lot of searching.

Peter Goodey
01-12-2005, 4:52 PM
Foreign country? And you live in Middlesex? ;)

Looking for a will sounds like a good idea. Best to read all about it here -
http://www.hmcourts-service.gov.uk/cms/1226.htm

Copies of the calendars are also fairly widely available elsewhere eg FRC although as this death is relatively recent (in historical terms!) it might not necessarily be covered in some of the copies.

I'd only really suggest looking first for the death to someone who didn't live in the country and who couldn't personally search the calendars easily (it's best to have a date of death if you're going to order the will remotely). But OTOH you might have another good reason for wanting the death certificate!

Geoffers
01-12-2005, 6:10 PM
I am particularly interested in my great-uncle who was a translator during the Nuremberg Trials,a Major in the USA Army & who died in hampstead post 1956 but I have no idea where or when.I wonder if there was a Will as he was never married & would like to know who benefited from his estate
Living in Middlessex, you should be able to get to a record centre where the wills index is located. The index is very easy to use. There is one set of indexes for each year. The index is arranged alphabetically by surname then forename and contains a good deal of detail, such as where and when died, names of executors/to whom admon was granted.

You mention though that he was in the American Army - was he an American citizen and did he retain contacts there? If so, would his will have gone through the American system?

Geoffers

Ron Leech
02-12-2005, 8:23 AM
The "ones" I am looking for are all twentieth century post WW2 & wondering how I start?
With a name like Ross I can anticipate a lot of searching.
As you say these people are all post WWII I assume that you must have a vague idea about dates of birth? My method is to create a list of those people I am looking for grouped by surname then given name and likely dates. I spend many an hour trawling methodically through the books at the Family Records Centre, Myddleton Street. I look for births first then marriages and finally deaths. With births you have the added advantage of the mothers maiden name being given for this period. Once you have a birth it is easier to predict marriage dates I work on a 25 year interval as a starting base. Hopefully the vast majority of the people you are looking for will still be alive, so the deaths section will only be a last resort. It is slow and labourious but quite often while you are looking for one individual another will appear. Start with people with uncommon or unusual names.

Should alas their surname be of the Brown, Smith occuring frequency I would not waste my time.

joette
02-12-2005, 12:11 PM
Thanks for that folks.No I wasnt saying that England was a foreign country but that the system was foreign to me.
No he was an Officer in the American Army but as far as I know he was always a British Citizen.It was to do with his work as a translator during the Nuremberg Trials.He was a self-taught Mathametician & he spoke fluently Spanish,Italian,German,Russian,Yiddish,Serbo-Croat & Esperanto of which he was a keen exponent realising that divisions in language are often the basis for conflict.He never married & due to a silly arguement over his brother's War Grave cut himself off from the family.He was in contact with my Mother when her Mother his sister died & wrote the most beautiful letter to her.They corresponded but lost touch although she was informed when he died by a friend but she cant remember when it was.The letters have been lost/thrown away.
The families mostly stayed in Scotland except to emigrate to Canada,Australia,Africa,Singapore,New Zealand & it is only in the twentieth century that we dared to travel south into England.
My Mum has several cousins that she has lost touch with & this is one of the reasons for my quest.Thanks again & I may now find myself familiar with the foreign in future!!!