Thursday, June 12, 2014

Dead Relatives - Hiding behind Names

Brutal title I know, however it is true and until tonight I had no idea.
I am searching my husbands side of the family at the moment which is not an easy feat given even his mother only new limited details about the grandparents but thought there was Jewish connections somewhere.
But during the past twelve months, I have discovered that the family seemed to enjoy changing first names and on occasion surnames.
This is why, up to the moment I can only go back on one line 4 generations and 3 on the other.
Tonight I discovered a small gem, not that it has assisted with my research a great deal but it has proven that names are not always closely related to the original.
Barnet Schniter is not related to Bernard Simmonds anyway you look at it, yet they are the same person. My proof....The London Gazette I suggest that if you are trying to find someone in the UK during the 1900's you go and have a look here for two reasons.
The first, if they were naturalised they are in the London Gazette and you may be lucky to have former names and spellings there. Secondly, if they changed their name by deed poll it is published in the Gazette stating what was and what will be there name.
The fact that my husbands side appears to be Jewish Polish Immigrants to the UK, is making this journey interesting to say the least! I am nearly finished my Research Polish Ancestors course through National Institute for Genealogical Studies and whilst it is really for those with family in USA or Canada, it has been enlightening about Poland and the history of the country as well as providing some great resources to follow up and consider in my future research plans.
So, if you have relatives from the UK, why not go and search their surnames never know what may pop up in a search of the London Gazette!!

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