Thursday, 29 December 2016

The Leeds General Cemetery Burial Registers Index

Being a member of the Guild of One-Name Studies has many advantages. One of which is access to its mailing list and that is one of the best sources for new websites of interest to family historians.

One such new source cropped up the other day and that is The Leeds General Cemetery Burial Registers Index newly release by the University of Leeds. Details of the project can be found here.

To access the search engine you need to select the top link or follow this one

The database covers entries from 1835 to 1992 and contains the details of the date of death as well as burial. You may also be lucky and get the names of the parents. However the parents names don't show on all entries as, like all other family history records, it is only as good as the information that the person reporting it was aware.

Searching on just a surname will then let you look at the entries and this has helped with the deaths of several HALSTEAD who married out of the name. It also contains the cause of death and also the address at the time.

You can ascertain the other persons buried in the grave which may or may not be family members.

John Hanson - email:

Saturday, 3 December 2016

Merger of two charts

Recent information from Katrina Hodgson has meant that two of the Yorkshire charts can now be merged.

So Chart 43 which started with John Halstead born prior to 1760 will now past of Chart 45 which start with John's father Isaac. Chart 45 did include John as a baptism but I had not made the connection.

This highlights one of the differences between a one-name study and ones personal research. With the later you are simply looking for the one many and in one-name studies you are trying to merge all the entries into the one tree.

With smaller one-name studies like my own personal one that was easy as they all come from one person in the 1690's where as with the Halstead's there are in fact over 1,000 trees. many are really small and just need the spark to find the right link and many time it is information from others.

John - email:

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Website update

My posting on Sunday 6th November about the new General Register Office release meant that I didn't post the notice that a new version of the database had been uploaded.

This version of the database contains over 500 new people out of over 600 added since the last update in August.

The majority of the entries have been generated as a result of completing the updating to include all the entries that I have been able to identify from the 1939Register.  Mind I have about 150 that I can't place and the majority of these are females that married into the Halstead name and it has not been able to correctly identify their husband due to the commonality of some of the men.

John - email:

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Update on the new GRO indexes

I wrote about a month ago on the new indexes released by the General Register Office. you can find the posting here.

This update will detail my findings and also hopefully give you some pointers

The indexes cover births from 1837 to 1915 and deaths 1837 to 1957 and were created over 10 years ago as part of the ill fated DoVE project. No other new indexes were created.

However these are a gold mine as I found at least 5 entries that were not in the indexes available on FreeBMD, ancestry, findmypast or elsewhere

I have completed the extraction of the material relating to the Halstead name and its variants resulting in 7360 birth entries to 1912 and 2,400 changes to death records. This has been a combination of age at death to 1865 and the remainder are where the second Christian name is included.

This involved the checking of over 7,300 birth entries from 1837 to 1915 and add the extra information. the extra information was twofold with the mothers maiden name (MMN) being added for all entries and also for those years when the original indexes only added an initial for the second first name the full name. There is one annoying trait in the new indexes do with mothers' maiden name and an inconsistency in the way that it was reported. This appears to relate to those people who were illegitimate and therefore have a MMN the same as the name being searched. so will have the surname and others not - it seems almost as though it was down to the transcriber.

I have checked through the birth indexes from 1901 to 1911 and of the 1059 all but 31 have been allocated to a family. Those that have yet to be resolved are because they are either illegitimate and need the certificate to get the mothers name or they have a mothers’ maiden name where two people have married with that name in the period in question thus making it impossible to be certain who the person belongs to. whilst many of these are children that died early it does mean that families are becoming more complete.

Again there were two changes with this new index. Firstly had full first names (no matter how many) which of course makes it easier to decide which George A is which and it also included age at death for those prior to 1866. it is this latter update which causes the greatest problem. 

For the Halstead archive all of the information was extracted from the original indexes about 15 years ago into Excel and has been updates as new information becomes available as well as recording which persons in the database the entry relates to which means that in theory you can't use the same entry for two people!. now for many years many of the indexes on the local BMD projects on UKBMD have included the age at death back to 1837 and these were included in the Excel files. So it was easy to see any errors that might have crept in. It appears that many of the ages in the indexes up to the age to 2 years were incorrectly recorded. So any entry of 15 months may have been recorded as 2 or 15 - there appears to be no way of checking.

John Hanson
email -

New indexes to the General Register Office certificates

I heard last week via the email newsletters from UKBMD of the announcement by the General Register Office of the release of their own indexes to the Births (1837-1915) and deaths (1837-1957). If you don't already subscribe then I would recommend that you do so by registering to keep up to date with all the latest news on the Local BMD indexing projects.

You will find details if you use the GRO online ordering system.If you haven't used if then you will need to register first.

So what is special about this index?

Well it contains mothers maiden name from 1837 and the death indexes have age from 1837. with the original indexes which of course all the other sites have created their own indexes from only contain MMN from 1912 and age at death from 1866. It should help all family historians in the future.

So far I have only had the chance to check the details that I have for the first 3 years but alread it has thrown up one birth that wasn't in the other indexes and had a mothers maiden name I wasn't expecting in another. This led to the discovery that she had been married before - mind both her marriages were prior to the start of Civil Registration in 1837 and often the condition of a wife was not indicated.

Mind there does appears to be an issue with the death indexes in that ages under 12 months have occassionally been indexed as imply a number of years rather than being 0 as in the later entries. So check thoroughly any entry where the age is anything up to at least 12 against another source. maybe the birth entry if the first names are unusual, the burial index or one of the local registrar indexes.

Saturday, 15 October 2016

Mary Louise HURST (1919-2016)

It is with sadness that I have a report the death of the founder of the Halsted Trust.

Usually known as Molly, Mary was born on 1 February 1919 at Bradwell-on-Sea, Essex and married Raymond in Maldon, Essex on 3 August 1944.She passed away on the evening of the 12th October 2016 with her family with her.

It was her husband Raymond (Ray) that the trust is named after and it was through his initial effort that the Trust came into being. His desire had always been to find an organisation that would be prepared to continue his research into the Halsted name and its variants. Unfortunately Ray died before the it could finally be resolved but it was by Molly's generosity and efforts that the Trust finally came into being. Ironically it is Molly's family that the trust is named after.

Her mother was Dorothea Mary ATKINSON, who was the daughter of John Todd ATKINSON and Harriet Ann EVERY-CLAYTON. It is the EVERY-CLAYTON's that eventually lead back to the Halsted name.

I had the pleasure of meeting her on many occasions in the early days at her house overlooking the open countryside. Then the research papers were still held with the family in Sussex and I used to visit with Jeanne Bunting, the then Research Director, to start the cataloguing of the collection and trying to work out what to do with it all. There was always coffee and biscuits and time for a chat.

After the collection was moved to London I still met her several times, usually at Halsted Sunday.

Possibly one of the better known people in her tree is Charles Bruce BAIRNSFATHER, yet I suspect that many today could not name him. However I suspect that many will be familiar with his creation - the character "Old Bill" from World War 1.

I have the details of the funeral if anyone is interested. Please contact me by email at


Monday, 8 August 2016

Another famous link

Those who read this regularly will know that I like to comment on some of the mysteries in the Halstead trees and my steps to solve them. I hope that you find them useful.

Recently I was looking at Walter Francis HALSTED who married Mabel GIBBONS in 1901. Mabel sadly died in 1909 leaving a daughter Christina. In 1911 Christina was living with her grandmother Maria HALSTED (Marie died in 1927 leaving £6,747) and I knew from the GRO indexes hat Christina married a Gerald Rupert CONRAN in Kensington in 1928 and did nothing more as I do not normally research families once the female line has married out and certainly once you get into  modern times starts to get more difficult.

The reason I was looking at Walter was that is the 1911 census he is not in London but in Liverpool staying in a hotel with a Stella listed as his wife and married for 1 year. She was half his age and I can find no reference to her at all. I am still no closer to solving who Stella was but Walter was shown as a Stockbroker and the company he was with was declared bankrupt in 1914. Walter dying in 1918 and according to Ray Lewis-Jones in his Chichester tree on the 30 July 1918 but no reference as to the source.

I wrote to someone who had a tree on Ancestry asking what source she had for the exact date and she replied the Halsted One-name study (thats us) amongst others but none that was a genuine first stop. All being copies of copies.

So I went and searched on findmypast and there was the answer. In the Shareholder Records of the Great Western Railway which whilst again a copy does actually list the source as the GRO death certificate.

Her final comment was "In turn, Walter's father was a banker, another position of wealth. When you consider that Walter married the daughter of a dentist and surgeon, Mabel Gibbons, it is safe to say that most of the professions that carried status in late Victorian England can be located in the family tree.". now I thought that this was rather good - no source was given so I assumed that it was her own words until I was going through the results of a search on google for "Walter Francis HALSTED"

Amongst the few results was an article from the Daily Telegraph back on 3rd March 2007 entitled "Family Detective - Telgraph" and was one in a series of articles by Nick Barrett on the histories of famous people and in the case it was Sir Terence Conran. it includes the paragraph

"In contrast, his father, Gerard Rupert Conran, owned a rubber-import business in east London, though at the time of his son's birth his occupation was listed simply as "clerk". It carried on to include the paragraph quoted by my correspondent.

So another link to a famous that is not a HALSTE(A)D by name but has a link. the question is do I go and add the details of Sir Terence!

Interestingly when he died in 1918 Walter left no will despite his occupation.

John email:

Friday, 5 August 2016


Now you might ask yoursellf why am I writing a blog on a non HALSTEAD.

In trying to sort out my mothers house and estate I have been travelling a lot and it also means that long research is not as easy. So I have been trying to sort out some of those odd little things that annoy one.

In this case I decided to look at those people who were the right age to appear on the 1939 Register who I had no surname for in the hope that I could resolve them. There were not that many as it happens but it was when I got to Margaret that the fun started.

What I found in the files was a Margaret who had possibly married a YEADON and then appeared to have married a Joseph HALSTEAD. All of this from a single entry in the 1891 census. you will find the details of Margaret here.

All of the information here came from the entry for Joseph HALSTEAD in the 1891 ceensus. This shows him as married and living with Margaret and son James Ed YEADON. The son must have been Margaret's before her supposed marriage to Joseph as he certainly was not with her in 1881. However there is no marriage of Joseph to any Margaret or a YEADON between 1881 and 1891. In 1901 Joseph is back living on his own and saying that he is single. I suspect therefore that he never actually married Margaret and that they were just "living together".

I decided to explore Margaret a little more. Was she a widow in 1891 or was her son James illegitimate?

When I was teaching family history a few years ago my first comment to the students was have you found them on all the GRO indexes and the census returns. If not fill in the gaps. So the first stop was the 1881 census for Margaret and sure enough there is Margaret as a widow living in Yeadon as a widow with James and his two sisters Eveline and Selina.

I can not find a suitable marriage after 1891 or a death for a Margaret HALSTEAD so I went looking in British Newspaper Archive for Margaret YEADONand found an interesting article in the Huddersfield Chronicle on 9th January1892. It reads:-

Under this will, dated October 15th last, and proved December 11th, Edward Joseph Middleton, deceased's brother, and Benjamin Currer Rawson, Bradford, solicitor, are appointed executors and trustees. The will states that an agreement was made by testator and Mrs. Margaret Yeadon on November 6th, 1886, whereby testator was appointed guardian of Mrs. Yeadon's daughter, Selina. Since the agreement the child has lived with Major Middleton, at his residence at Ilkley. The whole residue of testator's real and personal estate is to held in trust, and the income thereof paid to Miss Yeadon, with power to appoint by deed or will any part not exceeding one moiety thereof to any husband who may survive her, during his life or for a less period. Subject to such appointment the residuary funds shall be for the benefit of the issue of Selina Yeadon. The provisions are not to take effect if Miss Yeadon marries under the age of 25 without the consent of the trustees. ln the event of such unsanctioned marriage or the decease of Miss Yeadon, the trustees have power to take over the residuary estate for the benefit of testator's niece, Miss Edith Middleton. To Mrs. Anne Curtiss (Miss Yeadon's appointed guardian) is bequeathed £1,000. £8,500 free of legacy duty is bequeathed for the income to be paid to Ed. Joseph Middleton during life, and after his death to his daughter, Edith, with power to appoint any part thereof to her surviving husband. The trustees hold £500 for distribution to charities as they think fit.

Now there are not that many Selina YEADON's who could fit into the details of those in the article and the only other likely candidate appears to marry in 1886 anyway. So I believe that this is our Selina and Margeret.

I had difficulty tracking down who Major Middleton was as there was not a death that matched the Newspaper Archive information nor was there a matching probate record so I went searching for Selina and finally found the Major as John Joseph MIDDELTON. His estate was probated at £22,639 7s 5d in 1892 the equivalent today being about £1.4 million.

Selina was not with John MIDDELTON in 1891 so I can only assume that she was school somewhere, possibly overseas, as I can't find her in the UK. I sis think that I wasn't going to be to get anywhere further with Selina. I had found a possible married in 1906 in Warwick which was outside the 25 year rule set by John MIDDELTON's will but there was no Selina that match either of the possible surnames until I forgot the age and there she was living in Hampstead, London with a John Michael Tucker but the real clincher was the name of the eldest son John Cuthbert Middelton TUCKER!

It still hasn't helped my track down what happened to Margaret but I do know her her first husband was, what her maiden name was and also what happened to a very lucky daughter.

All of this will be included in the next website update.


Thursday, 4 August 2016

Website update

The website was updated on the 24th July.

There are now 28,000 people in the master database with 25,071 of them online. The online presence is an increase of 400 on the previous update.

The vast majority will have come from the work carried out in adding the details of the probate indexes post 1858 tup to 1987. There are still several that I can't definintely account for. These are mainly those who died after 1939 where there is not enough information to be able to fully identify them.

The British Newspaper Archive is obviously a great help but that only goes to 1955 and from 1968 onwards the place of death and the names of the executors are not included which does not help.

If you know of a HALSTEAD post 1939 who left a will and there details are not online please let me know

John Hanson

Friday, 1 July 2016

National Probate Indexes

Regular readers will know that my mother passed away a short while ago and with all the travelling backwards and forwards sorting out probate and the house means that it is not easy to follow some research through but it has meant that I have been able to do some tidying up and also catch up on some of the silly tasks that for a one-namer can be awkward to keep on top of,

One of those was updating the database with the details of over 2,500 wills from the National Probate indexes from 1858 available on both Ancestry and Findmypast to about the 1960's but the government has released it own site which has details right up to the present day. You will find details here.

Like all indexes of this type you always come across someone that you can't pin down in the master database. So far I have covered the period to 1955 and some 1,500 entries but have been unable to resolve the following.

If you know who they are please let me know!

Allan Payne Halstead RAMSAY died 4 September 1873 in Great Shelford, Cambridgeshire but have been unsuccessful in finding a link to the Halstead name. Letters of Administration were granted to his wife Harriett Elizabeth on 26 September 1873 and the estate was valued at less than £1,500

Susan Margaret HALSTEAD died on 2 December 1896, a spinster residing at 64 Horne Street, Bury. Letters of Administration were granted on 1 August 1903 to Ernest HALSTEAD. Whilst there was a death of a Susan HALSTEAD in 1896 she was only 5 years old according to FreeBMD.

Sarah HALSEAD died on 20 May 1903, a spinster aged 67 in the Asylum at Prestwich. Letters of Administration were granted to William James HALSTEAD on 22 June 1903. The estate was valued at £633.

John HALSTED died on 28 March 1905, aged 47 at 11 Lawn Terrace, Blackheath, Kent. The estate was valued at £2,810 14s 0d

Denis Halsted CHRISTIE died in France on 21 September 1918, whilst the details of his parents are included in the De Ruvigny's Roll I can trace no links to the Halsted name. Anyone have him in their family?

Betsey HALSTEAD, wife of James HALSTEAD, died 7 January 1920 at Lee Gate Farm, Nelson. The only Betsey who marries a James HALSTEAD is Betsey BROWN in 1913. This is partly born out by the burial on the 20th January 1920 at the Wheatley Lane Inghamite Chapel of Betsey aged 66, with of James HALSTEAD and formerly widow of David BROWN. This certainly looks the right burial even if the date difference is a little long for that time. However the address on the probate record is Lee Gate Farm but the burial is 12 Church Street, Barrowford. There is only one death of a Betsey (or variant) in Q1 1920.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Joseph HALSTEAD (1796-1840)

I started going through the memorial inscriptions for Colne Parish Church that I had photographed about three years ago whilst attend Halsted Sunday I came across the following for Betty HALSTEAD, wife of John HALSTEAD who departed this life on 22 October 1803

Afflictions sore I often bore
Physicians were in vain
Till God did please by death to seize
And ease me from my pain

Then I stumbled on the entries that I had copied from Colne Cemetery monumental inscriptions and suddenly realised that when I copied the first page that I had also copied an important Halstead entry. I had copied the page because it contained the key to the meanings of what each stone was.

The inscription on headstone A1 reads:-
"Here lieth all that is mortal of Martha, wife of John HALSTEAD of Colne, departed this life December 18th, 1829 aged 60 years.
Also JOSEPH their son, who was barbarously murdered in the 44th year of his age while engaged in his duty as a Special Constable during the Riot which took place in this Town on the Evening of 10th August 1840, lraving four orphan children to lament their loss.
Above John HALSTEAD d. April 5th 1848."

Why was this entry so significant? because I had come across reports and writing of the murder of Joseph in many places over the years but had not been able to tie it to one specific person as none mentioned any of the family details and certainly not his age! as his father lived after the 1841 census it was possible to find him and now I have been able to add the rest of the family!

The trouble was that none of the reports every listed any details of his family! With the Bristish Newspaper Arcihve I found entries in over newspapers across the whole of the United Kingdom but they all seeemed to concentrate on the roits in Colne and the murder of Joseph HALSTEAD. The only piece of information that they had was that he was a Cotton Manufacturer - not even his age was given! So the gravestone was the key to unlocking the mysterious Joseph HALSTEAD.

As it turns out I actually did have Jospeh HALSTEAD in the database but only because his son Henry Smith HALSTEAD had travelled to the USA in the early 1850's, married there and had a family. As well as Henry, his sister Louisa HALSTEAD and his mother Harriet HALSTEAD went too.

John Hanson - email;

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Betty HALSTEAD (1796-1843) and Newspapers

Firstly my apologies for no posts in the past few months.

My mother went into hospital towards the end of January 2016 and sadly passed away on the 1st February five weeks short of her 90th birthday. It seems strange looking back in hindsight (but it is a wonderful thing) but a couple of years ago she had been looking forward to it and talked about the celebration we were planning but as time went on she seemed less and less interested. So after many visits to the house to sort out things and having finally agreed the sale of the house (one that she had lived in since 1950) we are now getting back to normal. Mind the wife now has her second hip replacement set for the beginning of June.

Mind just because nothing has been posted it doesn't mean that I have been idle. The travelling and time spent there has meant that I could sort out some of those items that have been on the back burner for a while:-

Sort out the wills that I have aquired copies of - mind the details of them all still need to be added to the database

I have updated the database with the details of all the marriages I have collected in the past couple of years, either in person or from Ancestry or Findmypast.

I have made extensive use of the British Newspaper Archive over this time to add to the records. I have written many times of the benefits of newspapers and in many instances have learnt more than you could from the death certificate.
A case in point with newspapers was that of Betty HALSTEAD (1796-1843) who married Abraham WHITEHEAD in 1819 and he died in 1838. Betty then married John ROSCOE in 20 March 1842 but sadly died on 16 January 1843. I was sent a copy of her death certificate by Brian Schofield which simply says that she died from "Injuries from a Cart Wheel passing over her left leg". Mind she was buried only 3 days later but the Coroner didn't register the death till the May!
However the report in the Preston Chronicle on the 21 January 1843 tells us a lot more
"FATAL ACCIDENTOn Monday last, died Betty Roscoe, the wife of Mr.John Rosee, farmer, of Hanging Bank, Greenacres. The deceased was, crossing the main road from the Friendship Inn, Oldham Lane, to Regent Street, about six o'clock on Monday evening week, when a horse, drawing a load of hay, coming rapidly upon her, she was thrown down, end a wheel of the cart passed over her knees. She was shockingly crushed. She was forty-eight yeaas of age, and was the daugbter of Mr. Halstead, formerly publican of the Friendship Inn. The deceased is the fourth person who has been killed at the same spot, within a few years, by being run over by cariages"

If you have written to me and not yet had a reply - give me a gentle reminder, but I will get back to you!

The website was last updated on the 19th May

John Hanson - email:

Sunday, 10 January 2016

The wives of Walter HALSTEAD

Not all newspaper reports are true

Whilst searching the British Newspaper archive today to try and unravel the wives of Walter HALSTEAD who appears to have married two Ruth's I came across a number of entries in the early 1900's that I couldn't place in the Halstead files. Why do they always seem to have a wife with the same name as the first.

 The reason is that they have nothing to do with family history and she is in actual fact a character in a play called the "The Scarlet Sin" by G R Sims and Arthur SHIRLEY, which features a character called Rube Halstead, a reformed burglar.

It was given its first production in September 1900 at the New Theatre Royal, Rochdale and the following write-up appears in The Era (the newspaper of the stage and fully indexed on the British Newspaper Archive where this is taken from

NEW THEATRE ROYAL, LIMITED.-General Manager, Mr Otto C. Culling; Resident Manager, Mr Chas. Clucas.-The Scarlet Sin, a new play by G. R. Sims and Arthur Shirley, honoured Rochdale with its first visit on Monday evening. A good house had assembled and accorded the play a hearty welcome. The drama has a strong and interesting plot, and is certain of a successful career. Mr Robert Forsyth stands out pro- minently with a really fine portrayal of the reformed burglar Rube Halstead ; Mr Charles Kean Chute powerfully impersonates the scheming villainy of James Royston ; Mr W. E. Asheroft cleverly depicts the dual part of the free-hearted sailor and the deranged wanderer Frank Stanley. Miss Frances Dillon as Ruth Halstead and Bliss May Chevalier as Mary Halstead both secure high praise for their realistic efforts. Miss Beryl Mercer has established herself a favourite as Dick. Mr Percy Bell as Ben Orarge, Mr Harry Buss as Teddy Tiddlecombe, Mr James E. Thurlow as Summers, and Miss Jessie Danvers as Lottie Summers are a diverting quartet, and create much amusement.

George Robert SIMS appears to have been a prolific writer and his works seem to be at the John Rylands Library, Manchester. Details of works are available in the Archive Hub as "George R. Sims Collection, GRS/1/1 etc., John Rylands University Library, The University of Manchester." and can be found here.

 John Hanson - email

Monday, 4 January 2016

Hartley Halstead

Now once in a while you come across a name that you think is going to be easy after all how many Hartley HALSTEAD's can there be. Well all of those born after 1837 were easy. It was the ones that were born before 1837 that were the problem!

According to Ancestry there were two baptised in 1807 and one in 1810. The one in 1810 I had already as the son of Robert and the two in 1807 were the sons of William and Tom. That is until I looked at the images and realised that the Tom was in fact Wm and thereforre the same as the William. One other clue of course that lead to this deduction was that they were both on the same date in the same parish.

Why was I looking at Hartley in the first place. Well the investigations into Charles HALSTEAD mentioned in the last blog had thrown up an interesting story in 1949 in the Burnley Express that was titled "His father built a church - from logs"

Now if an article is going to grab your attention that is a title like that as it makes you want to read on.The article reads as follows

"SON of a Burnley minister who built his own log church In Canada, Mr. Arthur Butterfleld Halstead. 68-years-old Wlnnipeg-born Canadian, is back in his father's native land and anxious to trace relatives. He asks any Burnley Express readers who know the addresses of any relatives of his father. Rev. William Halstead, in Bumley or Nelson, to drop him a line at 23, Du Cane-close, Wood-lane. London, W. 12. Rev. William Halstead emigrated to Western Canada about 1873 after graduating from Richmond College, built bis own log church in Port Arthur, Ontario, and later went West to Winnipeg.He was subsequently stationed at Selkirk. Portage la Prairie and Mlnnedosa, in  Manitoba. Visualising the great opportunities of Canada's west, the minister was instrumental in  taking out to the Dominion many orphan boys from Dr. Stevenson's Homes—now the National Children's Homes and in every case the boys were successful in professional or business ventures. One them, John Knox, became a chief auditor with the Canadian Pacific Railway, and another, Fred Bagshaw, is a prominent King's Counsel in Regina.
FOOTNOTE: The voice of the log cabin minister's son will be heard over the air on September 27th on the B.B.C. programme, "The World Goes By"

Now with a forenames like Arthur Butterfield there are not likely to be many and a quick look on Ancestry Canada revealed one born in 1881 and dying in 1860. there were also a couple of well documented public trees. these showed that Arthur was the son of William HALSTEAD born in Lancashire in 1833 and his Canadian wife Mary.  Therefore William must have gone to Canada at an early age. Whilst none of the online trees had the parents of William it wasn't too difficult to work out who he was. One the assumption that the name of Butterfield had a link somewhere within the family it did not take long to track down the right family. after all at most he was only going to be on the 1841 census.

It turned out that he was was the son of Hartley HALSTEAD Except that I had the wrong Hartley as his father. I had him down as the one baptised in 1810 when in fact the passenger list of him arriving in New York in 1842 has him as aged 34 and therefore born in 1807

So another tree pulled apart and rebuilt - but it still leaves the question as to what happened to the Hartley HALSTEAD baptised in 1810!!

The update on this family will be in the next website update

 John Hanson

Friday, 1 January 2016

1939 Register Update

back on the 2 November I wrote about the newly released 1939Register and the number of Halstead's found.

Since then I have been investigating the results. Have unlocked one that I had the death certificate for. Mind this has not been helped by the fact that they have recently opened another 2.5 million records so I have to go back and look at the new ones.

The results of this initial research has meant that I have been able to add even more people to the database and also kill of others. The results of this will be published in the next website update but the full inclusion of the 1939Register will have to wait until the results are more openly available on findmypast Even my research budget doesn't allow me to get the all the entries

Many of these new entries of course are women who have either married into or out of the Halstead fold.

I have been making extensive use of the British Newspaper Archive to help with this.This let me to one of those problems that I parked some time ago as I could get no further at the time. I am a firm believer in the old adage that "the answer will appear at some time". Now whilst the newspapers haven't fully answered the question it has given food for thought.

This relates to John Charles HALSTEAD who according to his supposed wife Charlotte had married in 1887. My suspicion now is that they never married and that she lied on the birth certificates of both her children. As you will see Charles let an interesting life.

It was whilst researching this Charles HALSTEAD that I stumbled on two other interesting tales.

One is the suicide of Charles Halstead CAWTHRON in 1924 and the other was the sad tale of Charles HALSTED and his supposed wife Margaret who were refused permission to marry at the aged of 72!

John Hanson