Mar 152020
 

In view of the developing situation, we have cancelled our March and April meetings, they are being rescheduled for 2021. We will decide whether or not to go ahead with the May meeting in due course.

As they are now closed, our helpdesk sessions in libraries and at the Oxfordshire History Centre have been suspended.

Our Helpline – help@ofhs.org.uk or 01865 358151 – remains available.

Apr 032020
 

This is a double post, nothing to with Coronavirus, just a matter of a laptop having failed in late November.

The December and April journals have gone out to members and are available as PDF files in our Members-Only Area.

If you are thinking of joining our Society, you might like to read the December 2019 (right) taster edition (which includes details of the cover images) and the April 2020 (left) taster edition (which also includes details of the cover images)

You can receive your own copy three times per year by joining the Society.

Mar 092020
 

Oxfordshire Family History Society has been sent the following news:

Were people from your village or family among the 400 fatalities in Australia’s biggest peacetime disaster?

On 20 April 1845 the Cataraqui ship left Liverpool with emigrants bound for Melbourne.  A quarter of the 369 passengers were from Oxfordshire.  Many were poor families “encouraged” to take assisted emigration under a Poor Law amendment.  Close to its destination, on 4 August, the Cataraqui was shipwrecked on King Island in the Bass Straits (between Tasmania and mainland Australia).  Only 9 survived – mainly crew. The outcry which followed resulted in Australia’s first lighthouses.

The following Oxon villages and families had people who died in the Cataraqui disaster, including 58 children:
Chesterton (Andrews); Fringford (Cotterill, White); Fritwell (Rutter); Great Haseley (Knott); Kiddington (Savings, Simmonds); Rousham (Walton); Stoke Lyne (Loveridge); Stonesfield (Barrett, Oliver, Rolling); Tackley (Cook, Drinkwater, Floyd, Harwood, Hoare, Knibbs, Merry, Payne, Ryman, Savings); Wootton (Bishop).

Find out more about this piece of local history and its 175th anniversary commemorations at https://www.tackleyhistory.org.uk/

Come to a talk Mon 6 April, at 8:15pm in Tackley Village Hall OX5 3AH; given by Neil Wilson & Rachel Strachan.
Shipwreck off Tasmania: the loss of 42 impoverished migrants from Tackley – 175 years on”.

The shipwrecked Cataraqui

There’ll be a commemorative service on Sunday 19 July in Tackley for all the Oxon villages and families involved; contact Tackley Local History Group via suejashton1@btinternet.com.

Go to King Island to join their commemorations 1-5 August, see the wreck site and artefacts.  Contact cataraqui175@gmail.com.

Feb 282020
 
North Leigh MI CD cover
North Leigh MI CD cover

This recently published CD of Monumental Inscriptions in North Leigh includes about 1,240 separate monuments. These include stones to members of long-established North Leigh families such as BREAKSPEAR, CALCUTT, LORD and PERROTT . The oldest legible stone in the churchyard is to Doraty BRUMIGAM, who died in 1676.

The CD contains photographs of all the monuments, and transcriptions thereof, plus a name index and a clickable plan of the churchyard.

The CD is available, at £6 including postage, from the Society through our shopping cart at
https://www.ofhs.org.uk/CDsales.html#mis

Feb 272020
 

Having had a successful day at The Family History Show in Bristol OFHS will next be attending Family Tree Live. This is the second year of this event which we thought was very successful last year.

OFHS will be selling our CD’s of Parish Records and Monumental Inscriptions together with the full range of Black Sheep books. Included in the Monumental Inscriptions are three new releases, Great Milton, Bampton and North Leigh. We will also be providing a search service to help look for that elusive Oxfordshire ancestor.

https://www.family-tree.co.uk/information/family-tree-live

Feb 212020
 

In the light of the COVID-19 situation, this meeting has been cancelled.

On Monday, 23 March, Simon Wenham will talk to Oxfordshire FHS on:

Sculls, skiffs and steamers: the history of Salter’s Steamers

Salter’s Steamers (founded in Oxford in 1858 and known for much of itsexistence as Salter Bros Ltd) did more to popularise pleasure boating on the non-tidal river than any other Thames business. This talk traces the development of the firm and how it grew from a leading racing-boat constructor in Wandsworth to become one of the largest inland boat-builders and passenger boat operators in the country. It also describes many of the famous names associated with the business, including Lewis Carroll, William Morris, Edward VII, Jerome K. Jerome, T. E. Lawrence and C. S. Lewis.

Dr Simon Wenham is a member of the part-time tutor panel of Oxford University’s Continuing Education Department, where he focuses mainly on Victorian history.

We meet at the Exeter Hall, Oxford Road, Kidlington, OX5 1AB, with the talk starting at 8:00pm. Doors open at 7:15pm, when there will be advisors offering computer and genealogy help. Tea and coffee will be available. Non-members are very welcome, though we have a charge of £2 as an entrance fee for them to contribute towards the hire of the hall and the costs of speakers.

A summary of most talks will appear after an interval in the Members’ Only Area of the OFHS website. Summaries of previous talks are also available in the same place.

Feb 042020
 

On Monday, 24 February, Simon Townley will talk to Oxfordshire FHS on:

Wychwood Forest and Area: Landscape and People 1000-1900

Based on recent VCH work, this talk will look at the ancient royal forest of Wychwood (concentrated between Charlbury and Fulbrook) and its importance for surrounding villages. Exploited by the Crown for timber, underwood, and as a deer preserve, it also provided local employment and a shared communal resource, until its clearance and enclosure in the 1850s turned most of it into private farmland. The talk should provide important context for anyone with ancestors in the area, particularly in forest-edge villages such as Leafield.

Simon Townley joined the Oxfordshire VCH in 1987 and has been County Editor since 1996. So far he has contributed to eight volumes in the series, six of them as editor, and is involved in several county societies including the Oxfordshire Record Society, the Oxfordshire Buildings Record, and the Oxfordshire Local History Association.

We meet at the Exeter Hall, Oxford Road, Kidlington, OX5 1AB, with the talk starting at 8:00pm. Doors open at 7:15pm, when there will be advisors offering computer and genealogy help. Tea and coffee will be available. Non-members are very welcome, though we have a charge of £2 as an entrance fee for them to contribute towards the hire of the hall and the costs of speakers.

A summary of most talks will appear after an interval in the Members’ Only Area of the OFHS website. Summaries of previous talks are also available in the same place.

Jan 282020
 

On Monday, 3 February 2020, the Oxfordshire Family History Society (OFHS) meeting will be a Members’ Bring & Tell Evening, led by Kevin Poile. The meeting will be held at the Exeter Hall, Oxford Road, Kidlington, OX5 1AB, at 7:30pm (you’re welcome from 7:15pm).

Kevin Poile's grandfather's school certificate, aged 7
Kevin Poile’s grandfather’s school certificate, aged 7

Kevin says:

For this Bring & Tell Evening we are turning the tables and we want the audience to do the bulk of the talking. To do this we want members to come along and be prepared to tell us about something that they have found out relating to their family history, if there are photographs or objects involved all the better. Here are some ideas:

a. Found out something unexpected.

b. A family story they have proved to be correct or wrong.

c. Information found using an unusual source.

d. Something funny that has been added as a foot note to a record e.g. Notes added to Parish Registers.

I have various stories in my own family, one that still persists despite the evidence to the contrary is the story of my paternal grandfather who according to the family was discharged from the Royal Flying Corps during WWI because his first wife died and they had 6 children. However, his service record shows he joined the RAF after she died and he sent the children to live with his brothers.

The image is of one of my Grand-father’s school certificates which links him to part of my wife’s extended family and shows that testing of school children is nothing new (he was 7 at the time he received this certificate).

All we ask is that it not involve living people.

We hope to have the technology to project photographs etc. onto the wall without the need to scan them first.

We don’t expect anybody to put a slide show on just talk for about 5 to 10 minutes, either from where they are sitting or up front (your choice).

Hopefully if you have read my article about my family forest in the December Journal this will have given you some inspiration.

For those members who can’t attend, we hope to put a summary of the talk in the Members-Only Area in due course.  https://moa.ofhs.org.uk/

Jan 282020
 

The first event OFHS will be attending this year is The Family History Show, South West which is being held on the 8 February at the University Of West England Conference Centre in Bristol, 10am to 4.30pm. A free shuttle bus service will be provided from the Parkway Railway Station.

OFHS will be selling our CD’s of Parish Records and Monumental Inscriptions together with the full range of Black Sheep books. Included in the Monumental Inscriptions are three new releases, Great Milton, Bampton and North Leigh. We will also be providing a search service to help look for that elusive Oxfordshire ancestor.

https://thefamilyhistoryshow.com/south-west/

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