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Help and advice for Genealogy

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Devon - Genealogy

Devon Archives and Local Studies Research Guides

Devon Record Office's guidance for family historians.

The Genealogies pages are the main starting point in GENUKI/Devon for information relating to individual families: they list published and selected on-line narrative genealogical accounts, and provides links to town and parish pages containing further such accounts.

The Devon Online Parish Clerks scheme, working in conjunction with the One-Place Studies Project, involves a set of volunteers who each take responsibility for a particular Devon parish, gathering information about it and providing advice and lookups based on this information. Further volunteers are welcome. (E-mail requests to OPCs should include "OPC (parish name)" in their subject line.)

The Future is Still in the Past: An Introduction to Online Parish Clerks - an article by Wayne Shepheard, published in Volume 7, Number 2 (Summer 2012) of Crossroads, the quarterly journal of the Utah Genealogical Association.

According to the current Wikipedia definition "One-place studies are a branch of family history and/or local history with a focus on the entire population of a single road, village or community, not just a single, geographically dispersed family line":

Devon Library Local Studies Service's extensive Family and population history pages (archived copy).

Devon Book Indexing Project - call for volunteers.

The Genogold web-site provides a database search facility based on contributed genealogical data, and allows people to add their email addresses to database records that are of interest to them. It is a general site, but much of its data relates to the West Country. (Currently - August 2017 - unavailable.)

Devon Surnames (including Strays) Index - maintained by Devon FHS (members only).

Devon Surnames List - provided by UK Surnames.

Devon FHS projects (in progress, and completed).

UKBMD "links to web sites that offer on-line transcriptions of UK births, marriages, deaths and censuses. A wide range of other indexes and transcriptions are also available for most counties" - its Devon Section has over 200 links, but many of these are to general sites.

Devon section of UK Genealogy Archives - has pages for many Devon parishes with gazetteer transcripts and other information and useful links.

Debbie Kennett is running a Devon DNA Project, specifically a "a Y-DNA and mtDNA geographical project for everyone with a direct paternal or maternal ancestral line originating in the English county of Devon".

Kennett, Debbie. DNA Testing and the Devon DNA Project, Devon Family Historian, vol. 135, (2010) pp.15-18.

Electronic Mailing Lists, etc.:

  • DEVON - A mailing list for anyone with a genealogical or historical interest in the county of Devon, England, run by Vicki Lindsay, and co-sponsored by GENUKI/Devon and the Devon FHS.
  • Devon FHS Facebook page.
  • Devon Message Board - one of Rootsweb's large set of genealogy message boards.
  • Devon county-wide forum - one of the set of genealogy forums operated by British-Genealogy.com.
  • WESSEX-PLUS. A mailing list for anyone who has an interest in genealogy or general and local history related to and incorporating the counties of Berkshire, Bristol, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Isle of Wight, Hampshire, Oxfordshire, Somerset, and Wiltshire, England, run by Roma Draper.
  • Devon section of the RootsChat Messaging Forum - very active.
  • Devon section of Curious Fox - "The village by village contact site for anybody researching family history, genealogy and local history in the UK and Ireland"
  • The Devon Genealogy Group of GenealogyWise, the "genealogy social network", which "allows users to join surname groups, explore ancestral records, share photos, video, and family trees".

The Devon page of the World GenWeb project provides various "Devon query boards".

Nigel Batty-Smith provides a growing transcription, in browsable form, of the genealogies given in Visitations of the County of Devon of 1531, 1564, & 1620 by J.L. Vivian, published in 1895, and scanned images of his "The Visitation of the County of Devon, 1564 with additions from the Earlier Visitation of 1531". See also an online copy provided by BYU - Vol 1 (A-G) and Vol 2 (H-Z). [Lookups]

Visitation of the County of Devon in the Year 1620 - online copy - provided by Hathitrust.

The Devon Heritage website provides articles, illustrations, and/or name listings for a small but growing number of Devon towns and parishes.

Shirley Turner's Guide for an Overseas Genealogist to Devon (archived copy).

Listing of some Devon Strays, by Shirley Turner.

Listing of Devon Strays (archived copy) among some North Devon parishes, by Lorraine de Leuw.

Middle names, from all of Devon, other than Exeter and Plymouth, extracted from the IGI by Hugh Wallis.

Article on the Doone family of Exmoor, and R.D. Blackmore's famous book "Lorna Doone".

Pedigrees of families owning property in Devon and Cornwall, and others connected with them - a set of handwriten pedigrees by Loveday Sarah Gregor (ca.1762-1834) held at the Cornwall Record Office, and microfilmed by the LDS. Part 2 of this huge compilation has been digitised and so is available online. (It contains a name index starting at page 788.)

Brown, M. Index to Devon's Adjacent Parishes, Dartmoor Press (c1996) 24 pp. [Index lists all of Devon's 473 "original" Parishes, and the Parishes adjacent to each.]
Colby, Frederick Thomas (ed). The visitation of the County of Devon in the year 1620 Harleian Society, London (1872) 396pp. [Internet Archive]
Few, Janet. From OPC to OPS: Putting your ancestors in their local context, Devon Family Historian, vol. 155, (2015) pp.15-17.
Lauder, Rosemary. Devon Families, Tiverton, Halsgrove (2002) 160 pp. [ISBN 1 84114 140 2] [Family names featured include: Acland, Amory, Bourchier Wrey, Buller, Carew, Cave, Chichester, Churston, Clifford, Courtenay, Cruwys, Clinton, Fortescue, Fulford, Fursdon, Gilbert, Hamlyn/Rous, Kelly, Lopes, Northcote, Parker, Pellew, Quicke, Seymour, Stuckley]
Leetooze, Sherrell Branton. Putting the Flesh on the Bones of your Devon & Cornwall Ancestors: A source book for family researchers, (2000). [ISBN 0969878982] [Devon FHS Library 929.1/ENG-Dev]
Raymond, S.A. South West Family Histories: Cornwall, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset, Wiltshire, Exeter, Devon, S.A. & M.J. Raymond (1998). 128p.
Summers, Peter G. and Titterton, John E., (Ed.). Hatchments in Britain (10 vols), London, Phillimore (1974-). [Devon is covered in vol. 7]
Tuckett, John. Devonshire Pedigrees: Recorded in the Herald's Visitation of 1620; With Additions from the Harleian Manuscripts, and the Printed Collections of Westcote and Pole. (1859-61) 220pp.
Williams, B.H. Ancient Westcountry Families and Their Armorial Bearings: A story of the old nobility and gentry of Devon and Cornwall, with notes on their lives, their manor-houses and their charities (Vol. I), 112A and 112B Market Jew Street, Penzance, J.A.D. Bridger (1916) 301 pp. [Vol 2. was never published] [Contents] [Index] [Now available on an Archive CD CD-ROM.]
Worthy, C. Devonshire Parishes: or the antiquities, heraldry and family history of twenty-eight parishes in the archdeaconry of Totnes (2 vols), Exeter, W. Pollard (1889). [Covers parishes in the archdeaconry of Totnes.] [Index] [Available on CD from Archive CD] [Full text of Vol. 1 and Vol. 2]