Blog - family history and ancestor stories.

May 21, 2020

What do Taylor Swift, Richard Gere and I have in common?

“What do Taylor Swift and I have in common?” I asked my grandchildren as I put them to bed. “Not a lot” came the reply. “What about Richard Gere and me?” “Certainly not his looks.” “But I love music and I’ve seen Pretty Woman many times” I protested. It was no good, I wasn’t getting anywhere. Then I got their attention. I said “But we’re […]
May 16, 2020

400th Anniversary of the Mayflower

400 years ago, 102 passengers set sail from England to the New World on a ship called the Mayflower. Among the passengers was Richard Warren, one of George English’s ancestors This 5 part video has been made about the events during the Reformation leading up to “most influential journey in western history”; the voyage itself, and the enormous impact the Mayflower’s voyage has had ever […]
May 11, 2020

American and Canadian Ancestor Stories

We’ve made this video for those of you who had ancestors who emigrated from Britain to USA or Canada. Migration’s fascinating, why does someone leave one place and go somewhere else? There’s many motivations that may be behind a person leaving one country and going to another. It may be what we call ‘push’ – things like war, famine, persecution or other causing them to […]
May 3, 2020
lannoy cushion

How surname origins solved a 100 year old claim of royal descent

In Part 2, the example is of Philippe de Lannoy who went over to New England in 1621, where his name was soon changed to Philip Delano. The de Lannoys came from a place called Tourcoing in Flanders, where the Lords were the noble de Lannoy family, descended from royalty. In 1899, a claim was published that Philippe’s ancestors were from the noble de Lannoy […]
May 1, 2020
RTP Blog Name

Find out where surnames originate

In Part 1, discover how various types of surnames became established in England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland and other countries. Learn how the origins of a surname can help to prove and disprove descent, and in the telling of your family story. In Part 2, we present a genuine case where we used the origins of a surname to solve a claim of descent that had […]
April 29, 2020

Bringing Your Ancestors from Scotland to Life

We’re bringing Scottish ancestors to life, walking in your ancestor’s footsteps. In this piece, we will give you some idea of what may be involved in researching them, and what you can expect to get out of it, and how we help to bring those ancestors to life for you. We use examples from others that have been helped. These families have ancestors who lived […]
January 24, 2020
Bringing Your Ancestors from Scotland to Life

When did your ancestor leave Britain for USA or Canada?

During more than 400 years, millions of Britons have emigrated to New England, USA and Canada. So it’s natural that we have many American clients enquiring about their ancestors from England, Scotland, Wales or Ireland. They left for reasons of push or pull. Most on the Mayflower in 1620 were religious pilgrims. Some went seeking a brave new world. Others had little choice about leaving […]
January 24, 2020

Homecoming visits – walk in your ancestors’ footsteps.

One of the great pleasures of family history is visiting where your ancestors lived. Millions of English, Scots, Welsh and Irish have gone to live in countries all over the world down the centuries. Closer to home, there are all those who migrated from one part of the United Kingdom to another. We have conducted research for people with British ancestors from many parts of […]
January 1, 2020

Where Does My Surname Come From?

People often ask us if we know where their surname originated from.  There were no hereditary surnames in Britain in 1066 when the Norman Conquest took place. Surnames gradually became hereditary over the next 300 years. All surnames fall into one or other of four classes (alternative terms in brackets): 1.      Local Surnames (Locational, Locative, Toponymic, Territorial, Landed). These are surnames derived from a particular […]
April 3, 2017
Research Through People Blog 3

Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2017

It’s that time of year again! The annual Society of Genealogists’ Who Do You Think You Are? Live event is taking place at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham from 6 – 8 April. This is the 11th show and has the range of attractions that have proved of such interest to both experienced and novice family historians alike. The Workshops feature an extensive number […]
March 20, 2017
RTP Breaking Down Walls

Breaking Down Family History Brick Walls

A frequent question we get asked is “Can you please help me break down this brick wall?”. Problems come in all shapes and sizes such as the person you can’t find in the usual records, the one who seems to have disappeared and the lack of information about someone. Ways to solve such problems include analysis and logic, help from friends and relatives, creativity and, […]
March 19, 2017
RTP Blog

The Ancestry of Famous People – President Franklin Delano Roosevelt

In recent years, programme’s like Who Do You Think You Are have made us more familiar with the ancestry of famous people. Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR), the only US President to serve more than 8 years, has a fascinating background. Most people would guess that Roosevelt originates from Holland. Less well known, is that Delano comes from his mother’s side. Philippe de Lannoy arrived in New England […]