I mentioned recently that I’d been looking at my data in order to update my relatives and ancestors on the excellent LostCousins site. To do this I created a spreadsheet with a summary of all my relatives. I could then look at the summary to see what was missing, initially with a view to updating the LostCousins info.
After doing that, I had another look and saw that I was missing a marriage for 2 of my great great grandparents, James Clapham and Ellen Blackburn, who lived near Bradford. I wondered whether I could find it using the experience of the past 10 years. Having been searching for Micklethwaites recently, where spelling isn’t always what you expect, I thought it worth a try looking for different spellings, and I turned up a marriage on FreeBMD in Bradford for Ellen Blackburn and James Clayton. This looked possible. I then checked Ancestry and discovered that the parents’ names were both in agreement with the data in my records. So now I’m fairly sure this is the right marriage, but I’ll have to wait until I can get the image off Ancestry, either by visiting the library or begging off a friend. Can I wait till I go to the library?!
The morals of this story: keep trying; apply your experience to old problems; don’t rely on folks getting the spelling correct.