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FindmyPast - Is it indexed correctly?

Discussion in 'Search tips - discussion' started by Tim, May 30, 2013.

  1. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    Normally when I search for a person, I start with quite tight search parameters, and then start opening up name variations and years of birth etc.

    So for example, Louisa Scarratt born 1867. Variations on first name ticked only, 1867 +- 2 years and there are no results. Variations on surnames allowed, 3 results but no match.

    Remove year of birth, 20 results but no match.

    So, I then looked at one of her sisters, Alice Scarratt b1869. Variations on first name ticked only, 1869 +- 2 years and there's a single perfect match. View the transcript of the household and what do I find?

    SCARRATT, Lousia Daughter Single F 24 1867 Clerk Neston, Cheshire

    So why can't I find her when I search for her directly? How many other people which I have been unable to locate are actually on the censuses?

    What is going on? :mad:
  2. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member


    Just spotted why it doesn't work. The transcription has it spelt LousIa which in fairness is what is on the census :mad:

    So, an important lesson learned. As part of the variations I use I will now remove letters and replace with an * e.g. LOU* or remove the first name completely.

    So I have found her now, just can't find who she married in 1892, because the only other recorded name is Jane De Gauttes.
    • Good tip Good tip x 1
  3. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    Lol, I'm not having a lot of luck with this one, the marriage record on FreeBMD says

    Marriages Jun 1892
    De Gruyter Jan Wirral 8a 759
    Scarratt Louisa Wirral 8a 759

    So I just assumed (as you do) that Jan was a female and the men were missing. Anyhow the Cheshire BMD has her married to 2 men

    SurnameForename(s)SurnameForename(s)Church / Register OfficeRegisters AtReference
    DEGRUYTER Ian D SCARRATT Louisa Bebington, St Andrew Wirral
    GRUYTER Ian D SCARRATT Louisa Bebington, St Andrew Wirral
    SCARRATT Louisa DEGRUYTER Ian D Bebington, St Andrew Wirral
    SCARRATT Louisa GRUYTER Ian D Bebington, St Andrew Wirral

    I hope you're all learning something from this Masterclass? :)
    • Good tip Good tip x 1
  4. Jennie

    Jennie LostCousins Member

    I have often wondered what is Findmypast's given criteria for variations on a name - Soundex and/or others? Will have to check out fmp's FAQ. I have always thought that entering names like 'Louisa' would have included 'Lousia' or 'John' for 'Jon' in the alternatives list.

    Thanks, Tim, will bear this in mind =)
  5. Jennie

    Jennie LostCousins Member

    Yes, thanks (and with that surname maybe it is 'Jan') and that I's an J's can be incorrectly transcribed and surname prefixes can produce two individual names. I have the same with one of my related Huguenot surnames - Desforges - the mis-transcriptions cover all possible variations!
  6. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    Well I can't find them. Whoever she married, they seem to have disappeared. :(
  7. Alexander Bisset

    Alexander Bisset Administrator Staff Member

    To me that's not married to two men its married to ONE man whose name is recorded as both Ian D Gruyter and Ian D DeGruyter. I think that's just the one marriage isn't it? And couldn't the middle D initial be a confusion of "De".

    The "Jan" is Ian with the I transcribed as a J.

    A google search revealed there is a young lad on Facebook called Ian DeGruyter. He looks too young to be married in 1892 though.

    Edit: Given DeGruyter is a Dutch name Jan is probably right. As he appears on the 1891 census as Jan DeGruyter in New Ferry, Lower Bebington
    1891 England Census for Jan De Gruyter.jpg
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    not sure they had facebook then either :)
    Yes, I found him in 1891, its 1901 and 1991 I can't find them in :(
  9. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    I always look in the GRO indexes for people with very unusual names, because the transcriptions are more reliable than on censuses.

    Interestingly FreeBMD has quite a few births and marriages but no deaths, which suggests that :
    1. they were immortal (unlikely)
    2. they went back home, taking their wives and children with them (quite likely)
    3. they migrated elsewhere (possible)
    4. they changed their names - some through marriage, but others through choice (quite likely)
  10. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    Ok, latest update, I've found the marriage Parish transcript, so they married on 30/4/1892, and then there was a birth in Cheshire of Winifred Alice De Gruyter in 1893.

    Still looking in 1901.....
  11. Alexander Bisset

    Alexander Bisset Administrator Staff Member

    http://familytree.spaander.com.au/page170.html is interesting it has the family and says Jan Spaander married Winnifred Alice in New York on 26 Feb 1914 which suggests her parents may have emigrated to New York.
  12. Emma

    Emma Member

    I sometimes think that if you know the place of birth it's a good idea to search just the first name and birthplace - providing it's not a large city - then scroll down to where you expect the surname to be and if it's not there start looking for possible variations. Ages can get mis-transcribed too - last week I found a daughter shown as 33 mother 46 - probably unlikely - and father of similar age so not from a previous marriage but on looking at the image the person who had checked the enumerator's entries decided the original 3 was not clear enough so helpfully added another in the column! FMP have confirmed my report is accepted and it will be amended:)

    P.S. When I first tried to post this an error came up saying to do this I had to be logged in .....but I was!
  13. Alexander Bisset

    Alexander Bisset Administrator Staff Member

    I suspect you spent a while after initially logging in reading content. Then took a while typing up the post. In doing so the site thought you'd logged out. If this is the case then we may need to re-visit the time allowed before it thinks you have gone away and auto logs you out.
  14. Heather

    Heather LostCousins Member

    Tim, there are several entries on public trees in Ancestry which may or may not be any help. One has his marriage to Louisa and the birth of Winifred Alice listed and also that Jan died in Amersfoort Holland in 1932 aged 73.
  15. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    Hi Heather, Yes I've seen those, but unless they have any evidence attached to them then I just treat them as interesting.
    They maybe correct but unless I can prove it to myself I can't use it. All the trees listed disagree with themselves.
  16. Emma

    Emma Member

    Hi Alexander

    Yes, I think this is what happened - I just took too long thinking about things!
  17. Alexander Bisset

    Alexander Bisset Administrator Staff Member

    There is a tick box when you login. Keep me logged in! This stops the logout process happening automatically. However it is then up to you to remember to log out when you are done.

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