Grafting and Trawling

Grafting has 2 common meanings: hard work, and attaching twigs to a root stock. What I’ve been doing lately is both of those! That and trawling!


As regular readers will know, I have a database which contains all the information on Micklethwaites (and variants) that I can get my hands on. Over the last months I have added voter lists from Canada and England (very productive), prisoner lists (only a few), as well as a couple of other sources which have been less worthwhile. I’ve also trawled sites like Genes Reunited, Facebook (luckily, people do list their relatives there), and LookupAnyone and have increased my knowledge not only of people bearing our name, but also of the relationships between them. This is very consuming both of time and energy.


Once in the database, I can then try and sort out who belongs to which family. (Sometimes my guesses are wrong, but thankfully not often). As more people are linked together, sometimes other links stand out. I periodically trawl through the database looking for such potential links.


Last week I had a major success. I noticed that the branch head, William of Kirk Smeaton (born about 1729), fitted remarkably well with a number of other entries. Looking at his family, things seemed to hang together. I mentioned this to a co-researcher, who came back with even more information to complete the picture. So now William is no longer a branch head, but has been grafted on to the branch headed by Richard of Cawthorne (born about 1604) and which includes the major American branch. And my number of separate branches has dropped by one.

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