Archive for 2011

Society of Genealogists launches MySoG – members’ access to online genealogy data and much more

Members of the Society of Genealogists can now login to MySoG.


The Society of Genealogists has launched an enhancement to the website called MySoG. You will find a link on the top right hand banner on all pages on the Society of Genealogists website

 What is MySoG?


MySoG currently allows Members, who want to, to update some of their personal details, to renew their membership using secure online payment options and to access to the Society of Genealogists Family History Data Online (previously known as the Members’ Area). It will also improve the Society’s communications as members will be able to provide current email addresses. So please do take the opportunity to update your information.


 How do I start?

To use MySog for the first time you must follow the instructions in the letter sent to all Members in early February 2011 (and by Airmail to overseas Members). This explains how first to validate your membership to access MySog and obtain a password which is sent by email. To validate you will need to input the two different numbers on the front and back of your membership card.You can then login once the validation has been completed. Please note any Usernames and Password used in the past to access the old “Members’ Area” or SoG Data on Origins are not valid to access MySoG. Your MySoG access details are not valid on either of those facilities so you must follow the instructions that have been sent to you. If you have not received the letter or have any problems please email Please avoid using other email addresses or telephoning the SoG. The support facility is managed off-site and outside opening hours.


Once you have completed the validation process and received your password you may log into MySoG.


Once logged-in access is available to existing SoG online datasets which during the next few months will provide unlimited access to those datasets previously only available for a 72 hour period each quarter. Until then Members can still access the data using British Origins using your Orgins login and password but once all the data has migrated onto MySoG the Society’s contract with Origins will come finally to an end and our data will no longer be available on that site.


What will I find on MySoG?

Firstly MySoG will enable Members to ensure we have the correct information and contact details including email addresses. MySoG can also be used renew membership subscriptions and check payments and direct debit information. There is a “contact us” page to send specific questions on a range of topics.

During the next few months MySoG will be enhanced to give access to a new online bookshop (also available to non-members) where Members can obtain discounts on Society of Genealogists’ family history publications and other benefits. Members will also be able reserve places and receive tickets for the wide range of family history courses, lectures, tutorials and other events with membership discounts automatically applied. Additional facilities are expected to be added during 2011. In the meantime Members can order books and tickets for events using the existing online shop


What SoG data is online on MySoG?

As well as the existing datasets previously available in the members’ area of the website, the Society has been uploading those datasets that were formerly available on British Origins. So far the following have been added –

Boyd’s London burials (found under Middlesex parish registers)

PCC wills 1750-1800 (found under wills)

Vicar General marriage licences (found under Marriage Licences)

Faculty Office marriage licences (found under Marriage Licences)

St Leonard’s Shoreditch burials 1805-58 (found under Middlesex parish registers)

St Andrew Holborn marriages 1754-1812 (found under Middlesex parish registers)


By May it is hoped that those remaining indexes such as Boyd’s Marriage Index will also be available along with data sets that have accompanying images. These include Apprentices of Great Britain index volumes, Teachers Registration Council registers, Boyd’s Inhabitants of London, Trinity House Petitions Calendars and the Bank of England Wills abstracts.

All SoG data available on will be available to members on MySoG and this will include the indexes and ultimately the images of the Civil Service Evidences of Age and the GWR shareholders index.

Keep an eye on MySoG as data and enhancements are added in the next few months. Don’t forget you can use the free surname search of the SoG Data Online so you can quickly check if any new sources include the surnames you are researching before logging into MySoG

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Deadline for Society of Genealogists’ conference discount rates is approaching

The deadline for the earlybird discounts for the Society of Genealogists Centenary Conference is February 28th 2011

Breaking the Barriers – Innovative Genealogy in the 20th and 21st Century  –  Saturday 7th May 2011
The Royal Overseas League, Over-Seas House, Park Place, 5 St James’s Terrace, London SW1A 1LP

The Society’s Centenary Conference  Breaking the Barriers – Innovative Genealogy in the 20th and 21st Century is a celebration of the past century of genealogy and the role played by Society of Genealogists.  The topics will, of course, look forward to the future of the subject. The conference will include a full day of lectures and networking luncheon and dinner, featuring nationally and internationally known genealogical speakers.

The conference lectures streams examine how the SoG has influenced genealogy over the century. It will look at the period that saw the foundation of the Society. It will focus on issues facing family historians today and the technical advances that may help. We will discuss where we see the subject going in the future. It will show how family historians can take their genealogy further and break the barriers of their research.

The full programme and list of speakers can be found on the Society of Genealogists Centenary Blog

Places are limited. Click here to book a place via the Society of Genealogists online shop

Registration from 9.30am

Conference 10.15-6.30pm, Conference Reception & Banquet 7-ca 9.45pm

Conference prices

Conference including lunch (early bird rate up to 28 February 2011)        £99
(full rate from 1 March 2011  – £120)

Conference Banquet (early bird rate up to 28 February 2011)                      £30
(full rate from 1 March  2011  – £35)

Conference & Banquet (discount early bird rate up to 28 February 2011)     £116
(full rate from 1 March  2011   £140)

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SoG online data update. Bank of England Wills index and images now on Findmypast

The Society of Genealogists’ collections of Bank of England Wills Abstracts is now available online of

Previously only the index to these remarkable records was available online and the Society undertook a copy service to provide the records. Now excellent quality images of some 60,523 will abstracts for the period 1717-1845 can be viewed drectly online with the index.

The Bank of England Wills index and images will shortly also be published exclusively for SoG members on our website . Look out for an announcement when these ecords are published on MySoG.

For more information about the Bank of England Will abstract online visit the findmypast website

Special Society of Genealogists Offer for Exclusive Family History Conference ticket at Who Do You Think You Are? Live

If you’ve been researching your family history for years you probably know exactly what you want to get from your day at Who Do You Think You Are? LIVE but have a look at the show highlights and make sure you’re making the most of your day.

We’ve created a special ticket to supply you with targeted information on advanced subjects from esteemed speakers – why not buy one of the Conference Ticket for Sunday 27th February to take advantage of a networking lounge and three exclusive seminars as well as all the other show features and workshops.

The usual price is £30* but the Society of Genealogists is delighted to be able to offer a special price of £28* for anyone booking this conference. Book tickets directly on the Who Do You Think You Are? LIVE Website using the offer code CONFSOG

* £2 transaction fee applies.  Offer ends 25th February 2011. 


Sunday 27 Feb


How to make Google work harder for your family history!


With Lisa Cook

Discover innovative ways to work smarter and find more family history golden nuggets than you thought possible with the power of Google. Create a Genealogy Research Homepage. Learn quick and easy ways to follow the best genealogy Podcasts and Blogs. Make Google Your own personal genealogy research assistant with Google Alerts. We’ll make Google search the web for you 24 hours a day and provide tips for how to get Google to deliver the best results to your email inbox.



Lisa Louise Cooke is the CEO of Genealogy Gems.She produces and hosts the Genealogy Gems Podcast, the popular online genealogy audio show, and the Family History: Genealogy Made Easy podcast, both available at, and in iTunes.

Lisa is the author of Genealogy Gems: Ultimate Research Strategies, the DVD Google Earth for Genealogy, and Genealogy Gems Premium Audio Podcast Episode digital downloads. Her newest book Google for Genealogy is set for publication Fall 2010.



Sunday 27 Feb

Surnames, DNA and Family History

With Dr Turi King

Advances in genetic technology over the last ten years have brought an exciting new element to genealogical research. Is genetics able to provide answers when the paper trail runs out?

During this lecture, Dr Turi King will speak about her work on the link between surnames and DNA, what it tells us about the history of surnames, and current research using surnames to explore population histories. This lecture covers material which forms part of the upcoming book written with Professor David Hey, and George Redmonds, entitled Surnames, DNA and Family History.

Dr. Turi King is currently working as a Wellcome Trust postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Genetics at the University of Leicester carrying out further work on the link between surnames and DNA.. Following a brief period working at Cambridge University, Turi moved back to Leicester to carry out a PhD under the supervision of Professor Mark Jobling in the Department of Genetics on a Wellcome Trust Prize Studentship. Turi was awarded the School of Biological Sciences PhD Prize for her thesis entitled “The relationship between British surnames and Y- chromosomal haplotypes”.



Sunday 27 Feb

Are your ancestors frozen in time?


With Claire V. Brisson-Banks,

Inevitably there are brick walls in genealogy. These situations take extra time, effort and sometimes money to solve, giving up is not the answer. Using unusual and little known resources, thinking out of the box and taking advantage of Internet resources can be the answer to locating

Claire V. Brisson-Banks, B.S., MLIS, A.G. ®, accredited in England and a professional researcher for US/Canada, Scotland and Web 2.0 technology. Owns Timeless Genealogy and is currently on staff at the Family History Library, SLC, UT, as the Senior Staff Information Services Specialist & British Reference Consultant. She is a member of multiple societies and published in various genealogical and academic publications, a board member for both ICAPGen and CCLA and maintains multiple blogs and online social media. 

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New book – How to get the most from Family Pictures

The Society of Genealogists is delighted to publish How to get the most from Family Pictures by Jayne Shrimpton. This book is essential reading for family historians researching their family pictures. This is the first book to cover inherited artworks – paintings and drawings – and silhouettes, as well as photographs. The book spans the late 18th to mid 20th centuries. Informative, fascinating and thought provoking, it explains the  techniques for accurate picture dating and offers further tips for analysing, understanding and discovering more about historical images. The author is a professional dress historian and picture specialist, with an MA in the History of Art (Dress) and is a former archive assistant at the National Portrait Gallery in London. Now an independent writer, lecturer and consultant, she has over 20 years experience of dating and analysing picutres. How to get the most from Family Pictures is priced at £12.99, and is available from the Society’s bookshop and online at

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