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Every November, we pay tribute to the millions who have fought and died for Britain over the last century. This ritual began after World War I, where hundreds of thousands of our ancestors were killed, and many more were injured. With our latest military release, you can discover whether your family’s WWI heroes were rewarded for their sacrifice.
The Silver War Badge Records, 1914–1920, reveal more than 800,000 servicemen who were entitled to one of the Great War’s most distinguished awards. The Badge was given to men who were discharged due to illness or wounds—they wore it at home so they wouldn’t be accused of not doing their duty.
Find an ancestor in our new collection, and you’ll discover their rank, when they started and finished in the Forces, the unit they were discharged from, and why they were discharged. You can then start a hunt for the actual Badge.
Of course, anyone who was entitled to a Silver War Badge must first have served in the Armed Forces. It therefore makes sense to continue your discoveries in our other World War I collections.
First, search our two groups of service records. WWI Pension Records, 1914–1920, is most likely to include Badge recipients, as it’s dedicated to those who were discharged during the War and applied for a pension. Its sister collection, WWI Service Records, 1914–1920, includes soldiers who either died or continued in service beyond the end of the War.
You can then move on to our WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920, to find out what other awards your relatives earned. Combine all the information you find, and
you’ll have a detailed picture of their experiences fighting for their country.
Our Silver War Badge Records are available to Premium and Worldwide members. Upgrade your membership now
One glance at the ruins of the once majestic Kenilworth Castle is all you need to realise that Warwickshire is steeped in history. In the town Shakespeare called home—Stratford-upon-Avon—an array of Tudor buildings remain. Later the Georgians would venture to Leamington Spa for its soothing waters and their architecture marks that area. Sadly, Coventry Cathedral’s gothic splendour was destroyed by Nazi bombs in WWII.
The lives of our Warwickshire ancestors have been as varied as the county’s architecture. Now you can uncover their experiences with our new parish records, dating right back to the start of the early 16th century.
Warwickshire Parish Records, 1535–1910, is just the latest in our series of parish releases from all over the UK and Ireland. In previous months, we’ve revealed millions of records covering London, Yorkshire, Dorset, Liverpool and the whole of Ireland.
All these collections let you piece together the key milestones in your ancestors’ lives for centuries before the start of civil registration in 1837. By working your way back through the comprehensive lists of baptisms, marriages and burials, you can see how local events impacted your family’s development.
In Warwickshire, you could discover your forebears around the great coal fields and manufacturing industries of the 18th and 19th centuries. The county’s factories were among the most productive in Europe in this period.
Alternatively, your ancestors may have worked on the extensive railway or canal networks. Warwickshire has
long been at the centre of England’s transport system, both literally and metaphorically. Even if your family was just passing through, you may find a mention of them in our records.
All our parish records are available to Premium and Worldwide members. Upgrade your membership now
Ever since we released the scanned pages of the 1911 Census, our members have been enthusiastically browsing the records and making millions of new discoveries. We promised at the time that we would work hard to transcribe the records—and make them fully searchable—as quickly as possible. Now we’ve completed the first part of that huge task.
Right now, the 1911 Census records for Jersey, Guernsey, the Isle of Man and counties across Wales are searchable at our site. Many of you have commented in the past that we tend to start with English records. We’ve taken your observations on board, so this time we’ve deliberately put these other areas first.
That means that more than three million people within Wales and the British Dependencies can more easily uncover their families’ lives just before World War I. On top of that, the popularity of names like Evans, Jones and Davies shows how many people throughout England also have Welsh roots. Our new transcriptions will help many of you pinpoint your ancestors before they joined thriving ex-pat communities in London, Liverpool or any of the coalmining towns.
But that doesn’t mean we’ve been ignoring England. Indeed, we’re making strong progress with those pages as well. Within the next couple of months, we’ll release a second batch of transcriptions, covering many of the largest counties.
We’ll then bring you the transcriptions for the rest of the country as soon as they’re complete. In the meantime, of
course, you can continue to access the whole census by browsing the records for each county.
Do you suspect you have roots in Wales, the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands? Search our records now
The latest version of the best-selling family history software has arrived. With Family Tree Maker 2012, we’ve listened to what you wanted, and added the features and improvements that were most important to you.
Top of the list is a feature called TreeSync™, which lets you update your family tree from anywhere. You can make changes on a home PC, laptop, or even your iphone or ipad, and all the other copies of your tree will immediately be updated.
So, if you’re out at the record office and make a note of a new relative, or even add a photo to an ancestor’s profile, it’ll also appear the next time you open your file on your home PC. It’s a great way to keep your research up-to-date and organised.
The 2012 version also brings a new blended family view, which lets you show combined families such as step-families and adopted children more easily. Alternatively, you can take advantage of a full index that conveniently lists every person in your tree with their birth, marriage and death dates.
If you’re sharing your discoveries, you might want to use a new chart system that lets you display two people’s descendants at the click of a button, effectively revealing the relationship between them. Or, tell your ancestors’ tales with improvements to the software’s Smart Stories, which let you easily add and edit personal details.
There are many other improvements, including more personalised charts and customisable fact sentences. And of course, you still have the user-friendly tree builder, easy organisation of media files and interactive street maps from the 2011 version.
There are three versions of Family Tree Maker 2012 available for the PC. The Deluxe Edition
includes three months’ Essentials membership to Ancestry.co.uk, to help beginners get started. The Platinum Edition includes six months’ Premium membership, giving you access to all our UK records. Meanwhile, the World Edition gives you six months as a Worldwide member—with unlimited access to all our 7 billion records from around the world. Prices start at £40.84.
It all adds up to the best version of Family Tree Maker yet. Buy your copy now
Welcome to our Ask the experts section. This is where we answer your questions on all things genealogical, so if you have any pressing queries, send us your questions now*.
If your question doesn't appear here, you can email our Member Services team at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0800 404 9723, and they'll help you with your research.
This month’s questions are answered by professional genealogist Doreen Hopwood and Chris Paton.
Doreen Hopwood is a professional genealogist for the City of Birmingham. She regularly talks at family history events around the country, and lectures in social history at Birmingham University.
Chris Paton is a professional genealogist with both Scottish and Irish roots, and expert knowledge of records from all over the UK.
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I understand that by submitting stories or other information, I grant Ancestry.com Operations Inc. a perpetual license to distribute or republish my contributions at its discretion, with credit to me as the submitter. I release Ancestry.com Operations Inc., its agents and assigns, from any obligation to make payment hereunder and from any liability incurred in connection with the use of the text or materials submitted. Ancestry.com Operations Inc. may edit my contribution for content, length, and/or clarity. I warrant that I am at least 18 years of age.I accept