Is your Surname registered?

Our 2,888 members have registered
2,490 study surnames with us
and a further 6,318 variant names.

Julie Goucher

Julie Goucher

Apr 302017

We may have reached the end of the alphabet, but those of us with One-Name Studies will probably never get to the end of them! There is always something new to discover either at an archive, a library, a collection or record set digitised by the large genealogical organisations. 

We do have a number of members who are studying a surname with few descendants, meaning that at some point in the future the surname will die out. With the Guild’s various preservation options there is a way of ensuring that the research does survive into the future for genealogists and historians to enjoy.

Do you have a surname in your genealogy that might die out? Why not leave a comment.


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Apr 272017

Record from the Surrey History Centre – marriage of Samuel Harris (Holt) to Sarah Diggins 1787 Frensham Surrey England

There is something very exciting about seeing a document that one of your ancestors saw, signed and perhaps touched. The image shown here on the left is of my several times Great Grandfather marrying in Frensham, Surrey England in 1787. What is interesting to me is that it shows Samuel marrying, using the maiden name of his mother, which was Harris. Samuel was illegitimate and was the subject of a Bastardy Bond as the parish tried to chase down his father to extract money for the child’s upkeep. 

Samuel’s mother was rather shrewd. She baptised Samuel with the father’s surname which was Holt. She also used the surname of Holt for the Bastardy Bond. His mother subsequently married another man, but Samuel retained the surname of his mother.  Following the lines downwards until I reached the birth of my Great Grandmother, who had the surname of Harris purely by fate, it was my Great Grandmother, whose knee I sat on as a little girl and the moment I saw her name on a census return, herself as a little girl I was hooked on my family history. 

The moral of this post is to say we need to examine everything we read in documents, because sometimes, things are not as they appear……and the link to X…? Samuel signed his marriage record with X as he could not write.

The surnames of Diggins, Harris and Holt are not registered with the Guild, but one of our members does have an interest in the surname of Harris. If you search the Guild website, using the search box on the top right for the surname of Harris you can contact the Guild member who is researching the surname.

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Apr 272017

Badge of the York Herald. Image courtesy of the College of Arms.

The Guild of One-Name Studies has been mentioned in the College of Arms April newsletter. In the newsletter, which can be read here is the announcement from the College on the appointment of Peter O’Donoghue as the Patron of the Guild.

The newsletter also goes on to say that Peter has been featured in a recent episode of Who Do You Think You Are? USA and was at WDYTYA? Live earlier this month discussing the Danny Dyer episode.

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Apr 242017

One of the biggest attributes that the Guild offers members is the numerous indexes (you need to be logged in to access them). In recent months a decision has been taken to merge the various marriage indexes into one offering a wider and more comprehensive index for members. This merged index will be known as the Guild Unified Marriage Index.

Many Guild members submit their own material to the indexes so that others may benefit. Of course the biggest benefit is to members who can access the full data available, but non members, should they search for any given surname will find that the search results will also indicate if the surname appears in one of the indexes and many instances are to be found.

I am personally submitting material that is relevant to my own family history and then moving on to records from my own One-Name Studies.

Do you use the Guild indexes? and have you submitted material? Or perhaps if not, why not?

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