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BOOK - A Beginner's Guide to British and Irish Genealogy    
By Chris Paton
Published by Unlock the Past, Australia, 2016
This edition printed and bound in Canada by Inc., Ottawa

Softcover...18.00 (C$)

You've decided that you want to trace your British and Irish family history, but have absolutely no idea where to start. If only there was a handy beginner's guide...?

In this Unlock the Past guide, genealogist Chris Paton takes you through the key record sets that will help you get underway with your family history research. He will introduce you to the family history societies and archives that can assist your efforts, and provide a little context to the ancestral landscape within which your ancestors once lived, and into which you will soon be immersed. Along the way he will point out some of the major differences in record types to be found in England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, and the Crown Dependencies of the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.

In each chapter Chris also provides a steer towards further books which can further develop your skills as you become more experienced with the subject matter, making this an invaluable introduction.

Warning – once you get started with your family history research, you will never stop...!

Contents include:
  • Introduction
  • Acknowledgements
  • Chapters:
    1. Researching your family tree
        - Documentary sources
        - Gateways
        - Record your finds
        - Gadgets
        - Brick walls
        - Overcome mistakes
        - Question everything
        - Make your ancestors real
        - Damn the rules!
        - Further reading
    2. Civil registration records
        - Basic information
        - England and Wales
        - Scotland
        - Ireland
        - Certificate exchange sites
        - Further reading
    3. Parish registers
        - Baptisms
        - Marriages and banns
        - Burials and deaths
        - Locating state church records
        - Records of church governance
        - Non-conformist churches
        - Further reading
    4. Monumental inscriptions
        - English and Welsh gravestones
        - Scotland
        - Ireland
        - Further reading
    5. Cenuses
        - What censuses contain
        - Online records
        - Scotland
        - Ireland
        - Census substitutes: directories
        - Further reading
    6. Wills and testaments
        - Forms of estate
        - Probate and confirmation
        - England and Wales
        - Recent wills
        - Scotland
        - Ireland
        - Further reading
    7. Maps and gazetteers
        - Modern maps
        - Ordnance Survey maps
        - Other maps
        - Gazetteers
        - Further reading
    8. Occupations
        - Ancestral context
        - Understand the job
        - Newspapers
        - Dig deeper
        - Further reading
    9. Societies, archives and libraries
        - Umbrella bodies
        - National societies
        - Special interest groups
        - Archives
        - Catalogues
        - Libraries
        - Further reading
    10. Social networking
        - Facebook and Twitter
        - Blogs
        - Message boards and forums
        - Family tree networks
        - Further reading
    11. DNA tests
        - Types of DNA
        - Testing companies
        - Further reading
  • Appendix: The Crown Dependencies
      - Isle of Man
      - The Channel Islands
  • Index
Paperback: 72 pages
Product Dimensions: 5 x 8"
Softcover - staple-bound on spine
Published by Unlock the Past, Australia, 2016
This edition printed and bound in Canada by Inc.
ISBN 9781925323573

About the author: Chris Paton
Originally from Carrickfergus in Northern Ireland, Chris Paton holds an HND in Design (Communication) from the University of Ulster, a degree in Time Base Media from the University of the West of England, and a Postgraduate Diploma in Genealogical Studies from the University of Strathclyde. Today he runs the Scotland's Greatest Story family history research service and maintains the British GENES news blog. He regularly writes for several British and Irish genealogy magazines and is the author of several genealogy based publications. In addition to research and writing, Chris also teaches Scottish genealogy courses through Pharos Teaching and Tutoring Ltd, and previously tutored on the University of Strathclyde's postgraduate programme in Genealogical, Palaeographic and Heraldic Studies. He previously worked for twelve years in the television industry, as a researcher, producer and director of primarily history based documentaries, mainly with the BBC in Bristol and Glasgow, and for Scottish Television's network production department STE.

Click for a list of Chris Paton's books

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