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Tracking the Evans family from Saint Asaph, Denbighshire

I have mention this family before but  I will frist do a quick intro to the family. My great great-grandmother Susannah Wynne (Nee Evans) was born in Wales to Abel and Elizabeth Evans (Nee Jones). As far as I know she was an only child. I cannot find any records of siblings.

Abel her father was born 14 September in  1846 in St Asaph, Denbighshire, Wales to Mary (Nee unknown) and William Evans. William and Mary had a total of 5 children. I don’t have exact marriage dates but as William was listed on an 1841 census as still living with his family and the first child born to him was in 1842.  They were married sometime in 1841-1842.

There children are as follows:

Anne born in 1842

Elizabeth born in 1844

Abel and Susannah(twins) born in 1846

David born in 1850

Edward born unknown

I don’t much about Abel’s siblings but I do know that Abel married an Elizabeth Jones on 20 November  1880 in Llangerniew, Denbighshire, Wales and Susannah was born 26 June 1882 in Llangerniew, Denbighshire, Wales.

Abel’s Father  William Evans was born on 3 Nov 1817 in St Asaph, Denbighshire, Wales  to another Abel Evans and his wife Marry Williams.  This Abel and his wife Marry had  4 children.  They were married around 1812-1813 I believe and  I have based it on the birth date of the first  child. I base marriage dates within in a year or two of a child’s first birth as usually in this time period, children were born early in the marriage.

There children are as follows:

Susannah Evans born June 13 ,1813 and died at age 10 on 11 Oct ober 1823 (191 years ago today exactly). The cause of death is currently unknown.

William Evans born 1817

John born 1826

Thomas born 1828

I still following this family line hoping to found out some more information.


As always thanks for reading


Where do the mystery children come from…..

I have come across a lot of people in my family tree whose origins are  what I like to call questionable. By questionable I mean people who I’ve  found who I am not quite sure of their relationship to the family I researching.  I come across this frequently with children.  There is always though who are nieces, nephews etc who origins are easy to find.

Once such example of this is of a little girl who was on one census living with one of my great great grandfather’s family and she is listed as his adopted daughter but has the same last name as him.  This therefore let me to some theories

1. She was a relative’s child

2.  She was of no relation, prehaps a neighbour or family friend’s child whose parents had died or were unable to care for her.  This would lead me to believe that the census-taker simply didn’t ask for clarification of the child’s last name which is mostly likely.

3.  Child born out-of-wedlock

The child only appears on one census, so I that of course adds to the mystery who her parents are.  One  idea I have is perhaps the parents need to go away and the child was living with the family temporarily. I have tried searching for a child with that first name is the birth records around the dates she is born but no such luck.

Another example I have is  of a child who  si consider a granddaughter of one my great great grandparents but it is unclear which of the great grand uncles and aunts child it is. The same child on a later census is considered a daughter of the same great great grandparents. The curious thing is though the child’s last name is the same is the Great Great Grandparents this would conclude to one that the child is from one of the sons mostly likely.  The issue is though I have found which is think is the child’s birth record( I plan to order the record soon to see if I can put an end to the mystery.)  The other issue is one of the daughters is listed married on the 1st census the child shows up on, so I am fairly certain this is the child’s mother but I am not sure why she has the mother’s last name and not the father’s. I have a feeling that her birth record is the clue is this case.

I think this information gives an insight into an ancestor character, it shows how strong family ties were or how close they may have been to neighbours or friends.

Update on James Yuill Senior

I have been able to find some new information on my 4 times Great grandfather James Yuill. He was the head of the Yuill family that originally came to Canada from Scotland. As previously mentioned in a former post linked here, James was born in Rutherglen Scotland. I don’t really know  anything about  of his life before he turned 18. I did recently find out using and Ancestry some interesting information about his life from 18 until he migrated to Canada. James at the age of 18 enlisted as a solider in the Napoleonic wars and this was with the 2nd Dragoons unit of Scotland. I haven’t been able to find out if he saw any action in this war. He enlisted on the 12 of March 1793 and was married in July of that year as well.

Now moving forward to March of 1814, James is now around 40 and has 7 children. He is applying for a pension from the government and has lost an eye and is wore out.  The record that I found this in is records for those who had served in Canada.

When I first read this my heart went out to this man, he had a wife and 7 children to support as well may not been able to go back to being a weaver with only one working eye.  This also put into perspective the choice of immigrating to Canada. Perhaps he  saw a chance at better life in Canada when he was over there as a solider.  I understand why he and his son lobbied the Scottish government to come to Canada, not just because of the conditions in Scotland at the time.

This information was wonderful to find but left me with more questions. I am now wanting to know how he lost his eye and were in Canada did he serve.

As always, thanks for reading


Who Do you Think are Ancestry Show review

I just watched the first episode of the new season of the American Who Do You Think you, as well as so reruns (some I had seen and some I hadn’t.) Most of my Who Do You Think You Are watching before this was online . I’ve watch quite a few episodes of both the Britain and American one. I have to say I really love this show. It is celebrities not ordinary people. I truly think they should do one for the average person, I think that would be just as interesting.(sadly, I am doubtful this would garner much interest among the general public.)  I do think the show is well-done.

The show is still a form of reality show but without all the drama well not the usual drama of a reality show. The show does strike  me though as being used an a form of advertising for I do like how they add the history as well as learning the basic about the ancestor(s). You l do need to understand the timeframe or what was happening to understand why people made the choices they did. I find that the celebrities have an interest in finding out more about their families.I do strongly suspect that the celebrities chosen, backgrounds were researched before to pick those that would have a so to speak “juicy ” story to tell. The show is done in such a way that you want to the whole episode, they do often sneak peeks before commercial breaks to get the viewer to not change the channel.

Overall, I think it is a well-done show.


As always, thanks for reading




Review of

I decided to do a trial of findmypast website to see what information I could find.  I did end up subscribing to the site but only for the Britain records. This is actually, the site way back when I first started searching were I found the ship record for my Welsh Grandma family.

I am going to give here what are my pros and cons about the site. This is just my personal opinion of the site.


It does keep records of records you have looked at. I find this handy as you don’t have to then repeat a search again.

I have found some records that I haven’t found on ancestry in particular for Scottish or Welsh ancestors birth records or information from newspapers.

They have an ideas board for suggestions one can make for changes to the website, I think it is great that a user can provide feedback or ideas.

They have 3 different options for subscriptions  One is a pay as you go, pay a select amount and get a specific number of credits to use. The credit amount does vary among records. I see this option as a pro and a con(see con in the con remarks section) You can also get a World (Includes United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia , New Zealand and United States and others ?)or a British subscription by the month or yearly.

If you are choosing to search a particular record collection, the search parameters are better than the for the all records search. Depending on what collection you are choosing to search, you have from the basic information to being able to provide other household members (for censuses)or solider number (for military).


I found that the search parameters are quite narrow and don’t provide a lot of search options. For example, one can only search the ancestor by name, date of birth and place.  It does have check boxes for name variants so it will search for different spellings of the name. This is for searching all the records.

The subscriptions are all in british pounds so do take care to do a conversion to your own country money so you know how much it will end up costing you. I wish that would give the prices in maybe US or Canadian as well but I suspect most of their users are in the United Kingdom.

The con I see with the pay as you go is that records are not all a select number of credits as well as you can end up wasting  your credits on the wrong records.

I create a small family tree with just a few ancestors to try out the family tree. Building your family tree is fairly easy but I couldn’t figure out a way to add the records to your tree. I did find the spot in the tree were you can manually add the source information. Overall I am not impressed with the family tree. It seems that one has to add most information is manually which to me honestly is a lot of work.


Overall, I find the site useful but not as a primary resource site for my searching, I still prefer ancestry as searching is better as well as it family tree. I will continue to use the site  to look for information I can’t find on ancestry.

As always, thanks for reading.


Beyond the Ancestor and into the past…diving into the time they lived

I recently took out a book from the library about the Scottish settlers of Upper Canada(Ontario).  My reason for wanting to look at this book was that it is about Scottish settlers in Ontario. All of my Scottish ancestors started off in Ontario and then eventually moved to elsewhere in Canada or the United States.  This book has been my starting point for trying to find more about what drove my ancestors to come to Canada and once here what was the life like for them. The book is called The Scottish Pioneers of Upper Canada, 1784-1855, Glengarry and Beyond by Lucille H Campey. I am not to far into the book yet just a couple of chapters in but I have also jus browsed the book. I always browse books before deciding if I want to read or use them for ancestry research so I have an idea if they will be useful or not. So far this one has a wealth of information. This book has appendices on information about the ships and the passengers that travel from Scotland to Quebec.( the entry port into Canada).  The book was published in 2005 so it is not a new book and  although I did get from an academic library is definitely not a hard read or overly academic based. I do recommend it to anyone doing research on their Scottish ancestry that has connections to Ontario. I will mostly likely post more once I have read more of the book.

The Line stops here…Some Family Tree Brick Walls

This post is about the some of the people whose line have come to a stop.

One that I find really frustrating is my Great Great Grandpa James Alexander Smith. I have only been able to find bit and pieces about his family. I know that he was born in Port Elgin Ontario and came to Manitoba when in 1876(presumably by himself)I know from the 1921 Canadian census that his father was born in Scotland and his mother in England. I am not sure if his mother was English or Scottish then. I do know according to his obit from that he had 2 younger siblings still alive at the time of his death a Mary and John living in South Hampton Ontario.(I assumed they were younger as he was in his 90s when he died).  I also suspect  that he have a connection to the Bell last name as one of his daughter has Bell as her middle name.(There is no connection to Bell on his wife’s side). I have also tried using the Scottish name patterns to see if I can find any connections that way. Most of his children names match up with names on his wife side.

Another one is my Great Great Grandma Ellen Barnett(Nee Coleman). I know that she was born in Birmingham England and at some point moved to London in the Whitechapel Area. She did marry and have 3 children but died sometime before her youngest was 5.(I assumed she died, she could have left the family.)I cannot find a marriage or birth record for her, I only found out her maiden name by ordering my Great Great Grandma’s birth certificate. All her children’s name appear to come from her husband’s side so I don’t have any names to go by for parents or anything. I have found a possible family for her but I am not sure this is the right one.

The family is living in Birmingham in 1861.

Father is Moses Coleman and Mother is Fanny Coleman. Siblings are Maria, Benjamin, Jane and John. Her date of birth matches up and the fact that the father was listed is having been born in London, I concluded this was maybe the right Ellen.  I based this off of the date of birth as well the fact that her father was born in London and Ellen up living in London later in life. I am trying to find out some more information about the family before I am positive this is the right one.

One last one that is driving me crazy is  My Great Great Great Grandma Mary McKechern. She is another one whose life before marriage is a big blank. I know she was born and married in Ontario. I have found her marriage information but the marriage information doesn’t give parental names.  All I have been able to get from the marriage certificate is where she was born and the area were she was married. I am assuming that she was living in the area at the time as well. I am trying the Scottish name patterns to see if I can find any connections that way. I have also tried to search the census for the area around and before the time she was married to see if I can find her or even a family with the same last name.  I know it is highly unlikely she would have been living alone at the time.

As  always, thanks for reading



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