There and back again

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It is easy to think of emigration as a one-way process, but not everyone who went to live in another country stayed there permanently. As more and more records are indexed online, you may find family members in unexpected places, and as a result discover that your 'stay at home' ancestors were more well-travelled than you thought.

Audrey Collins is a Family History Specialist at The National Archives, where she has worked for ten years. She is a regular speaker at family history conferences and events in the UK and overseas, and is the author of numerous books and articles. Her most recent publication is Birth, Marriage and Death Records: a guide for family historians (Pen & Sword 2012), which she co-wrote with Dave Annal.

Published in: Education, News & Politics
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There and back again

  1. 1. Audrey Collins 8 August 2013 There and back again Going away doesn’t mean staying away
  2. 2. What makes you think they were abroad? • Missing from the census? • Missing a marriage? • Family stories or artefacts • Surprise discoveries when you are looking for something else • Clues in the records • Sometimes ‘hit and hope’ is the right strategy
  3. 3. For king (or queen) and country, or for work • Armed forces • Merchant Navy • Diplomatic and colonial service • Trade • Temporary work • A new start
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  17. 17. Hindsight is always 20:20 • Did they know they were emigrating? • Did they mean to come back?

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