Scotch-Irish-L ArchivesArchiver > Scotch-Irish > 2012-05 > 1335903229
Subject: Re: [S-I] Sotheby's and Royal Navy - OT
Date: Tue, 1 May 2012 20:13:49 +0000 (UTC)
I haven't done this kind of research in some time, so much of what I know is obsolete. However the first suggest is GOOGLE. No matter how much you think you know about something or how to find it, you might be a little behind.
I have no idea if Sotheby's can tell you who they sold the journal to but they have a website, found by googling:
The second is a vast topic. One thing to do is google several things such as napoleonic wars, British Napoleonic Wars, British warships Defence (etc, etc, etc, etc).
I found a National Archives website that has a database of Trafalgar seamen:
http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/aboutapps/trafalgarancestors/ I'd check it out first.
The ship has webpages:
If you google for things like British Naval History you'll find many links to books, etc.
At the top of the pyramid of knowledge on how you research British navy is
www.genuki.co.uk and for books 'Ancestral Trails'. The latter has info on how to do this research.
As in this page:
That page suggests:
Pappalardo, Bruno. PRO Pocket Guide Using Navy Records , The National Archives (2001). [ISBN: 1873162928]
Pappalardo, Bruno. Tracing Your Naval Ancestors , The National Archives (2003). [ISBN: 1903365376]
and has a long list of National Archive pamplets to check.
These are on line. Click on the links. For example:
And this brings us to the National Archives. Generally speaking, these kinda records are held there. There are many, many many many records of various types due to the changing nature of how wars were organized and paid for over time.
There are also articles, like this one on how to do research in the British Royal Navy:
DO NOT overlook this article -- wow will it save you time.
Largely the direction of your search is determined by your ancestor's rank. If he was an officer you'll search different indexes, rolls, etc, than if he was a seaman. You'll want to check his certificate of service. Records relating to pensions can also be very very useful.
Note that many things -- the most important --are available at the FHL in Salt Lake and microfilm. Really stupid to spend a short visit to London researching in records that are readily available to you at home and that you could have spent a month of evenings checking in detail rather than a rushed hour or two. Some of these records could also be near you in a library, such as a university. There are extensive microfilm/fiche collections that respected research libraries have. The FHL has NIDS and maybe a univiersity near you does.
See the webpages of the British Isles Family History Society USA for info on NIDS and other indexes.
A handful of individuals are experts in various areas of British military records -- They demand top price for their services, but generally, you don't need them. There's a lot of work you can learn to do yourself.
The ultimate guide is John Kitzmiller's huge work "In Search of the 'Forlorn Hope': A Comprehensive Guide to Locating British Regiments and Their Records". Mr. Kitzmiller was (maybe still is) employed at the FHL in Salt Lake. His book is organized by regiment and may or may not have info relevant to Naval seaman.
Also see here:
The page above directs you to resources that describe movements of particular ships.
With all of this, though, the very first thing you must determine is his rank. If he was an officer then y ou would be checking different sources for information on him than if he was a seaman.
In both cases there are indexes to service records and the like.
You create a spreadsheet for yourself with the name of the record to search and where it is. If it is not next door to you, you also research ways to get access to it: is it in the FHL, for example? You may want a notation of what is in it and how important it is to research.
Some general history of the Royal Navy here:
With maybe a half hour of research you'll know two things:
1. what the first things are you need to check and
2. you need a drink because this is very confusing and overwhelming.
Yup! This is why the specialists make top dollar.
However there are plenty of records available from this period and so you won't have to anything really difficult, like channel your ancestor to get info out of him first hand.
Also google Battle of Trafalgar -- it has quite an INternet following.
Your ancestor's ship was part of Collingwood's Division.
And here again is the National Archives page on Trafalgar ancestors:
Note carefully the records that it it is comprised of as you may want to research them for more information.
Best of luck!
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Tuesday, May 1, 2012 1:24:51 PM
Subject: [S-I] Sotheby's and Royal Navy - OT
I am afraid this is somewhat off-topic, but as the list is quiet right now,
I thought I would risk it. I wonder if anyone can point me in the right
direction to research some new information, not actually S-I related.
I found a new obit for my great-grandfather and it included two helpful new
tidbits: that his father served at the battle of Trafalgar and that he
died when my ggf was 11 years old leaving him the support of his family.
Pursuing this, I found the gggf's journal being sold at auction in 2005 by
Sotheby's. The description included the name of his ship and other
biographical information that confirmed info I already had.).
[Here, if anyone wants a look.:
The questions now are,
1) Is it possible to get Sotheby's to tell me who bought it? (I hope it
was a library or museum.)
2) How would YOU search for more information on this Thomas Fletcher who
was a second gunner and then able seaman on HMS Defence during the
Napeleonic Wars (b. 1774, d. 1837)?
Thanks for any help you can give me.
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