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    Hello Friends Can some one please tell me what I do Next to try and trace my Father's family past as do not not know where to turn to please help Many thanks John

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    You need to lay out in a clear methodical fashion what you know and then to slowly and systematically work backwards.

    So presuming that you were born in England your birth certificate will give you the names of your parents. With that information you can search the GRO marriage index (available from all good genealogy sites or somewhere like FreeBMD) to discover when they were married, and using that information you can purchase a copy of their marriage certificate from the General Registry Office which will tell you where they were living, their father's names and maybe their ages.

    Of course you might already know his date of birth and his birth certificate, in which case you can use the same process to discover the previous generations information and equally of course you can search the birth index and order up birth certificates from the same place.

    Get back to 1939 and you can search the 1939 Register which is available on line and is a type of census but you can only see information about people who have been identified as deceased or who are more than 100.

    The first real census that you can make use of was in 1911 and they happened every 10 years before that back to 1841.

    If this isn't what you are looking for give us some more details and we will see if we can help, BUT don't give us details of anyone who is alive.

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    As we need more infomation to help you. Tell us what you know about your father date of birth, date of death, marriage as long as every one mention has died.

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    Researching my Father,s Family
    My Father, Name is Stanley Coulson He was born in Kingston upon Hull he married my Mother Ivy Stephenson/Coulson on the 07/08/1950 at Hull Register Office he was 30 years old
    when they married His address at the time was 3 Hopps terrace St Paul Street Kingston upon Hull . His Fathers name was Ralph Valentine Coulson His Mother.s Maiden Name was Edith Watson /Coulson He had 2 Brothers Syd Coulson /Ralph Coulson and a Sister Her name was Eileen I also know that he passed away at the age of 38/39 at home in Hessle in December 1958 he is buried in Hessle cemetery

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    Hi John,

    Following on from your most recent post in another thread
    Can any one please tell me where do I start posting enquires about my family research as i do not have a clue where to star my research please help Many thanks & best wishes John
    first of all, have you done what Megan suggested in post #2?
    Now this works the same for both your father's and your mother's families, so just substitute one name for another.
    Start with your father.
    I'm presuming that you know at least some details about your father - his full name, date of birth, hopefully date of marriage and certainly name of spouse, and date of death. Do you have the certificates to prove those facts?
    If not, buying them are your first necessity. (You will find family history is an expensive hobby. )
    Only ever order certificates from the GRO (General Register Office) or a local Registrar's Office. From the GRO it will usually cost £9.25; local office's are a couple of quid more. Ordering through third parties will more than double the cost and you don't get a better service because the third party has to order from the GRO anyway. Some companies have a similar address to the GRO and sometimes they're the first hit on a search engine. This is the page I always use on the GRO website. Bookmark it so you don't have to search for it.
    https://www.gro.gov.uk/gro/content/c...es/default.asp
    If you click on 'search the historical indexes' you will then find the page to login/register. Once you've registered you just need to login in the future.

    I will assume that you have your father's birth certificate. Hopefully that should show his date and place of birth and the name and occupation of his father and his mother's maiden name. Assuming that you know if your father had any brothers and/or sisters and whether they were older of younger than him, you can then search for the marriage of your grandparents.
    e.g. parents Zebedee Brown and Mary Smith; your father Charles Brown born 1934, elder brothers Abraham and Brian, younger sister Dora.
    There is a wonderful resource called FreeBMD. https://www.freebmd.org.uk/cgi/search.pl (Another one to bookmark.)
    It's a transcription of part of the GRO Index (which is all the births, marriages, and deaths registered since 1 July 1837 to the present day). FreeBMD only go up to the end of 1983, and is not yet complete but the vast majority of entries prior to 1950 have been transcribed.
    So in the case of the fake family I've given you, you find Charles born in 1934, and there's an Abraham born 1930 and a Brian born 1932, so look for a marriage 1925 onwards, than you can send for the marriage certificate of your grandparents. Just beware that you can very often (even with more unusual surnames) have two marriages with the same surnames. Which is why you have to go back one step at a time, making sure you have the correct forenames.
    To get a feel for FreeBMD search for your own birth registration. You'll see the registration district, and a volume and page numbers, and those plus the year and quarter are the details you need to order certificates. Note that you have to spell the name exactly as it is given in the GRO Index. If for instance you always thought your father's name was spelt Bryan, but it's spelt Brian in the Index then you have to order it in the name of Brian. If, on FReeBMD, the name of the registration district is in italics there is a error either in the transcription or in the GRO Index itself, so come back and ask for further advice.

    The GRO Index is also available on subscription sites such as Findmypast and Ancestry, but I think that for the moment FreeBMD will suffice. Get back to your grandparents (and hopefully purchase at least their marriage certificate) and then come back and tell us their details and we'll set you on the further-back trail.

    It doesn't matter too much where you post a query though obviously don't post a query about an ag lab (agricultural labourer) in Yorkshire in somewhere completely irrelevant like North America or WW1. 'General family history queries' in the Family History forum usually covers most things.

    Pam
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coulson52 View Post
    Researching my Father,s Family
    My Father, Name is Stanley Coulson He was born in Kingston upon Hull he married my Mother Ivy Stephenson/Coulson on the 07/08/1950 at Hull Register Office he was 30 years old
    when they married His address at the time was 3 Hopps terrace St Paul Street Kingston upon Hull . His Fathers name was Ralph Valentine Coulson His Mother.s Maiden Name was Edith Watson /Coulson He had 2 Brothers Syd Coulson /Ralph Coulson and a Sister Her name was Eileen I also know that he passed away at the age of 38/39 at home in Hessle in December 1958 he is buried in Hessle cemetery
    Somebody was posting a much shorter reply while I was posting my thesis. (And working out that that your father was highly likely to be called Stanley, birth registered 1919.)

    I would suggest that you take out a free 14-day trial on Findmypast. Make sure you untick the auto-renewal box.
    They have a lot of Yorkshire baptisms and marriages for the Hull/Sculcoates area including Ralph and Edith's marriage in 1913. Once you've registered. click search in the top banner, and from the dropdown menu select search A-Z record sets, and then enter Yorkshire marriages. Searching for Ralph Coulson year 1913 should find the entry. Remember to download the image to your computer.
    From their ages and father's names, you should then be able to find Ralph and Edith on the earlier censuses. I haven't looked for Edith but Ralph's birth registration was in March quarter 1880 in Keighley. If you want a cheap version of his birth certificate(six quid, but it's only in black and white, not a pretty pink/red like yours will be) then go to the GRO site, click search historical births index, and then obviously put in Ralph's name and the details I've given you. You will then see an option to purchase either a certified birth certificate(£9.25) or a PDF. Click whichever.
    Ralph died in 1938, so you can obtain a copy of his death certificate for six pounds as well. Same GRO site, but select deaths option at top of page, and then search.

    To search the censuses on FMP the easiest way is possibly to search each year, so again, select A-Z record sets,and if you scroll down the page a tad, you'll see the various UK censuses listed near the top of the page.

    I could give you all the information, but I know how gobsmackingly exciting it is to find your first relative in the census, so I'll let you have that pleasure. Obviously, if you do get stuck, then yell.

    Pam
    Vulcan XH558 - “Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.”

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    Just a little update before I start on some (boring) chores.

    I currently can't find the Coulsons in the 1881 census.

    In 1891 you can find them in piece number 3925 folio 16 page 25. (If you scroll down the 1891 census search page you'll see all those boxes.) A tip - it's best to use /- at least one year of birth when searching the censuses. Parents had a habit of forgetting how old their kids were, plus actual age always depended on whether or not someone had had their birthday before census day.

    Edith would seem to be found at piece number 3925 folio 19 page 36 in 1891.

    Poor Edith, also died very young. Although the age given on her death registration is a couple of years out to her marriage certificate I'm pretty certain this is her - aged 48, registered September quarter 1936, Sculcoates registration district.

    Ralph Valentine's father, also a Ralph, death registration 1902, Sculcoates registration district.
    I think Ada, his wife, died in 1927.

    Do be extra careful when searching - there's more than one Ralph and more than one Ada Coulson lurking in the Sculcoates area.

    Pam
    Vulcan XH558 - “Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.”

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