News and Blog

The latest news and information from the Achievements team.

  1. The genealogical problem of Titanic’s Rose

    Whilst re-watching the epic film Titanic this weekend, it struck me how the life of the central character, Rose DeWitt Bukater, is a good example of how a genealogical “brick wall” can come about.

    Rose boards the Titanic with her mother Ruth, finance Cal Hockley, and their servants. She would have been recorded on the shipping records as Rose DeWitt Bukater. She falls out with her finance during the voyage, and meets Jack Dawson. Once the ship has sunk, she chooses to give her name to the authorities as Rose Dawson: thus there is no Rose DeWitt Bukater recorded on the surviving passenger records.

    Although this is a fictional story, the fact that Rose changed her name and effectively re-invented herself after moving to America is a scenario that happened time and time again. Rose would simply have claimed that she lost everything on board, and giving herself a new name would have been simple. Her family were in England, so who was there to know about her old life?

    Anyone researching a real Rose could easily come up against a “brick wall” when a change of name occurred. In reality however, names were often changed to something familiar, such as a mother’s maiden name. In this case, Rose takes Jack’s surname, even though he dies at the time of the sinking.

    If you have your own “brick wall” which needs breaking down, why not contact us today for a free quote.

  2. Pick up your family history research this Autumn

    As the nights get longer, and the days shorter, why not think about looking at your family history research once again.  It might be that in the past you have put away research after hitting a proverbial “brick wall”, or simply that other things in life got in the way of completing further research.

    Whatever your research needs, Achievements is here to help.  As professional genealogists, we have many years experience working on all aspects of family history, whether it is sorting out a specific problem, or undertaking in-depth research into a particular family going back several centuries.

    Why not contact us today to find out how we can help you with your genealogical research today.

  3. Spring clean your family history

    Today at our headquarters in Kent the sun is streaming in!  So why not be inspired by the good weather to dust off your family history files, and have another crack at those “brick walls”?

    Sometimes sitting tight on research and taking stock before revisiting it at a later time can work wonders.  Those ancestors which were so elusive may come out of the cracks, perhaps with an inspired guess at a surname variant a clergyman or transcriber may have inadvertently used, for example.

    Alternatively, if those brick walls are proving hard to bring down, contact us today for a one-to-one chat with a genealogist.

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