News and Blog

The latest news and information from the Achievements team.

  1. Born during a thunderstorm?

    The theme of the week has been forenames representing weather events, and today’s focus is on the name Storm.  The first instance of Storm as a forename in General Registration, which began in July 1837, is the marriage of a Storm Beard in 1839 in Bath.  Storm is a British surname, so it is possible that he was named after a maternal surname in his family tree.  Alternatively, he may simply have been born during some memorable weather!

    This seems to be the case for Stormy Thompson who was born in Sunderland in 1851, and who died just a year later.  Perhaps the most interesting name found during this search is Stormy Petrel Hodgson, born in 1887 in Poplar.  Whilst this child was born in London, perhaps it’s parents had an affinity with marine life as well as the weather!

    Storm is more usually found as a surname, and intriguingly the first Storm entry in General Registration is the death of one Christmas Storm in 1837 in Yorkshire.  What a name combination!

  2. It’s snowing in Canterbury today!

    Today is the 26th April.  Next week it is May. And yet East Kent (and much of the rest of the East coast) is on its second snow shower of the day.

    Unusual and freak weather is always a topic of conversation, and this was no different for our ancestors.  Without social media outlets to discuss and share pictures and information, other ways were found to record odd weather or other natural events.  One of these was the parish register, where the local incumbent sometimes included events of local importance, such as a freak storm, snow in the warmer months, or a devastating flood.

    As genealogists and historians, look out for such information.  It might be that death occurred seemingly as a result of such an event, or a marriage or baptism took place during a period of intense heat, or a severe winter.  Such information records in parish registers can add to the context of our ancestors lives!



December 2018
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