MUCH joy tempered by bouts of shock and sadness. Such is the lot of family historians everywhere. Something I can well attest to after recent foraging in the foliage of my family tree. Anyone joining this global corps of addicts soon learns that tracking down their ancestors is a long plodding journey. One beset by more highs and lows than ever experienced by the most stubbornly loyal Man United fan. Exciting moments of discovery, and troughs of gloom when trails lead nowhere. Now, thanks to the recent long-awaited release of the 1921 Census of England and Wales, the odds of… Continue reading
Mullion Cove, Cornwall (courtesy Geograph UK/Wikiwand) TRACING one’s ancestors is akin to joining Poirot as he unravels the threads of an Agatha Christie mystery. Except that the little Belgian detective eventually provides acceptable answers. Not so with family history. So many detours and distractions. So many loose ends. So much… Continue reading

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Sorting through my recently discovered pack of old postcards has provoked not only memories but also an unexpected feeling of sadness for the Facebook generation. This intrusive all-seeing all-knowing app (what a ghastly truncated word) has enabled them to bombard their army of “friends” about every aspect of their lives.  The postcards of the 21st century. They are collected into albums and stored in Instagram, Picsnap??? and similar programs. Presumably destined to be out there in the ether for eternity. Which, in some ways, is excellent. A lifetime of friendships, dalliances, break-ups, affairs, births and deaths, weddings and divorces, kittens… Continue reading