Tag Archives: Kirsty Gray

Surname Studies at THE Genealogy Show

Together with Janet Few and Kirsty Gray I presented a panel session at THE Genealogy Show 2019.


Fuzzy photo of the three panelists  (L-R) Jill, Kirsty. Janet

Our topic was Surname Studies – the why, the how and much more!  I had great time sharing details of my study and giving a few tips to would be Surname Studiers; of course I learnt quite a bit from my co-panelists as we discussed our methodologies. Thanks to Kirsty for her invitation to speak on this topic and to Janet for coordinating the slides and organisation of our presentation


So what did we talk about?

Firstly Kirsty gave a brief introduction and indicated how she had met Janet and me.

We then introduced our studies and discussed  their scale, size and what got us started. We told whether our studies were worldwide or a restricted geographical area, or a restricted time period and if we were a one-man band or part of a team. Each of us had a very different story about why we got started and our motivations for undertaking a surname study.


Our research and data collection methods were discussed; we talked about the sort of data we collected and where found it. We also covered our methods for storing data. It was interesting that as mine was a newer study I made a lot of use of spreadsheets and technology whereas the others, who had started their studies quite a while ago used more traditional methods.

We talked about reconstructing families and whether this is a priority. Do we start with the families and then look for data or vice versa or both? Do we aim to put all our data into family trees? Once again this was dependent on the age and size of the studies we discussed.

We touched on the use of DNA for surname studies but, as of yet, the panelists have not gone down this path.

We also talked about the Problems of researching in a country/state/province/county we aren’t living in. These include not having local knowledge of the geography of an area and the resources available in an area.

We all seemed to have done fairly well with promoting our studies by using a range of online and print resources including on-line trees,websites/blogs, social media, journal and newsletter articles and giving talks/presentations about our studies. We all agreed that membership of a surname organisation provided great support for those undertaking studies.


Finally we each shared some advice for prospective studiers. Mine was “Just do it”. 

My only regret is that we didn’t record this session as I would dearly love to once again hear what my co-panelists had to say.






CurryAus on Stage

The nerves are kicking in as I prepare go on stage later this week to talk about my Surname Study, CurryAus.

I will be joining experts Kirsty Gray, Sillifant Study, and Janet Few, Braund One-Name Study, in a panel presentation “Surname Studies – the why, the how and much
more! ” at THE Genealogy Show 2019 on Saturday this week in Birmingham. As the newbie on the panel I hope to learn some tips from Kirsty and Janet. I will also share my experiences as a beginner Surname Student using 21st century tools to manage her study.

My message will be “If you are contemplating a Surname Study – JUST DO IT!”

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If you are in the area please call unto THE Show where you will meet and hear from a gathering of genealogists from all all around the world.



The Amateur on the Panel

I’m an amateur genealogist, I don’t profess to be an expert but I try to be diligent  in my research efforts. I enjoy dabbling with CurryAus, my Surname Study, because it gives my brain cells a real workout as I try to merge the jigsaw of all the Curry records I find into a coherent collection of family trees.

It was a pleasant surprise when I was invited to join two professionals and Surname Study experts in a panel presentation, Surname Studies – the why, the how and much more!, at THE Genealogy Show 2019 in Birmingham in June.

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I am sure that I will learn more from fellow panelists, Kirsty Gray, Founder of the Surname Society and Janet Few, The History Interpreter,  than I will contribute to the session. I aim to enthuse a few beginners to start up a surname study and share some tips that rookie surname studiers can employ as they start out on their Surname journeys.

Whether you are already undertaking a Surname Study or you just want to know the whys and hows of Surname Studies I can promise that this will be a lively and entertaining session.