Black History Month

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There are some great educational events on this month.

One that caught my eye and I am hoping to attend at the British Library is Black In Renaissance Britain:

Two readers will give an insight into how British Library records assisted in their research:

Miranda Kaufmann will be discussing her discovery of 135 Africans spending a week outside Bristol in 1590.  Michael Ohajuru will be speaking about his discovery of a black magus (king) on a roodscreen found in early 16th century Devon. The session will be moderated by Dr Caroline Bressey, Director of the UCL Equiano Centre.

Through researching a different subject matter.  I came across John Alexander Barbour James.  He was born in 1867, Berbice, British Guiana (Guyana). Worked in Ghana 1902 through his employment as a  postmaster.

As he was unable to relocate his wife Caroline and their children to Ghana, the family arrived in London around 1904.  They settled at Birbeck Grove, Acton.  Mr James was active in a number of black groups including African Progress Union and the Association of Coloured People. He published books and wrote columns in the Acton Gazette & Express called “Trust the Blackman” and “Colour and Culture”.  He died in 1954.


India Office Records at British Library

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I have researched many British India family trees.

The India Office records at the British Library is a fantastic resource if you have British ancestors who lived in India between 1600 to 1947/8.

Tip of the day – it should be noted that if you are searching the baptism records it does not indicate who the child’s parents are.  Therefore if you are searching for an ancestor with a very common surname it can be time-consuming.  Try and see if their names appear, which would then reduce your time.  Better still contact me and I can conduct the on-site research for you.

British Library family history sources include:

Biographical index

Returns of baptisms, marriages and burials

Wills, Administrations and Inventories

Pension Fund records

Military Service records

Civil Service records