This client project (shared with permission) delves into tracing the journey of a convict ancestor, sent to Australia for pickpocketing.One of our Australian clients came to us with an Oliver Twist-esque story about her teenaged ancestor who was convicted of pickpocketing in England in the 1820s and sent to the Australian penal colonies. She wanted to know—was he an impoverished pickpocket in a gang of young pickpockets, or might he have come from a respectable family and been wrongly accused? We were on the hunt to find out.The TrialJohn Coates was tried on 11 May 1826 in Middlesex, London’s Central Criminal Court, commonly known as Old Bailey—picture dark wood, long robes, and powdered wigs here. John Clark, John Coates, and Thomas Smith were accused of stealing a handkerchief worth 2 shillings, 6 pence from James Hardy. The three defendants were tried for Larceny from a Person during the Old Bailey May session. Smith was found not guilty. Twenty-one-year-old Clark and …Read more
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Legacy Tree works with researchers all over the world to access records for our clients. We asked one of our onsite researchers, located in Jamaica, to share her experiences with researching Jamaican ancestry.Jamaica is a multi-racial society. Though African ancestry occurs in eighty-five percent of the population, there are a large number of persons who also have European ancestry, East Indian Ancestry, Chinese ancestry, Jewish ancestry, and Middle Eastern ancestry. The first mistake made when starting to do Jamaican ancestry research is forgetting the fact that Jamaicans are “out of many, one people,” which incidentally is the coat of arms motto of the country.The History of JamaicaThe first inhabitants of the island were the pre-Columbian peoples, who settled the island in two different waves in 670 AD and 800 AD, culminating in a culture that is called Taino by academics today. The Taino were the people who greeted Christopher Columbus in 1494, when he first came to the …Read more
One of our genealogists shares her answer to the question, "Why don't I share any DNA with my known relative?" after her own surprising DNA results.Recently, Carolyn Tolman, Project Manager at Legacy Tree Genealogists, and I discovered we are fourth cousins. Her great-great-grandmother Rosa Clark is the sister of my great-great-grandmother Sarah Annie Clark.Not long after we made the discovery, we were sitting in a DNA chromosome mapping session together at Roots Tech. I leaned over to her and suggested we use our shared DNA to begin mapping our Clark DNA. We logged into our AncestryDNA accounts immediately but couldn’t find each other in our match lists! What if one of us had misattributed paternity? What if one of us is not biologically a Clark?!Maybe we had just missed each other while quickly scanning our DNA match lists. Thousands of matches aren’t easy to skim through, especially while listening to a lecture. We moved to GEDmatch where we could quickly compare our …Read more
Have you heard about ThruLines? One of our genealogists shares how to use this tool to extend your family tree.For many years, I’ve worked on building a large family tree. I always was interested in knowing who my second, third, and fourth cousins were, even though I might never have the opportunity to meet them. As a kid, I wondered if any of my classmates were somehow related to me. Turns out that some of them were. (Hi, Cuz’n Todd!)When I received my AncestryDNA results in late 2015, I instantly recognized a few names near the top of my match list, and set to work figuring out who the other close (and sometimes not-so-close) matches were. This effort has continued over time as new matches were added. Because I already had a robust family tree, this process was more straightforward than it might be for someone with little knowledge of their extended family tree. Yet, this process has been time consuming. Really time consuming.When AncestryDNA announced ThruLines this …Read more