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April 2020 Update
published by Pat Hase - 22 hours 12 minutes 45 seconds ago.

This arrived just too late for the Update but look out for these records being available.

From the National Archives

"We’re pleased to confirm that we will be giving everyone free access to our digitised collections very soon, but it’s taking our amazing digital team a bit of time to make it happen.

They’re facing similar challenges to the rest of the world with regard to connecting to our various technical systems while working from home, and many of them are also juggling childcare duties. Stay tuned for an update soon!

EDIT: To clarify, we’re referring to digitised collections that are available on our website (and usually chargeable) – at this stage, this doesn’t extend to our collections on other sites."

Francis Stephen DYMOND 1924-1943
published by peter-follett - 1 day ago.

Any relatives are likely to be descendants of his parents siblings.

They were


Thomas Edward. b 1886  Brixton Devon

Prudence M. b1887. Brixton Devon

Fredrick Stephen  b1893 Cornwall

Gertrude Emma b1895  Kentisbeare Devon



Augusta Mary. b1884. London

John WH. b1885 London

Who was George HILL?
published by daveerasmus - 3 days ago.

That's excellent again, Pat. I don't have access to that newspaper clipping. Simon HILL was a brother of my 3 x GGF John HILL. Martha must, I think, be the former Martha OFFER and she was the wife of my 3 x GGF John HILL! None of this proves that George was a brother to John and Simon, but the evidence is stacking up.

William BAKER's name appears immediately above George's on the list of those sentenced to transportation. I need to find out more about him to see if that sheds any more light on things.

Yes, I saw that additional information about Matthew TAVERNER. By the time of his burial he was described as "Yeoman" so he obviously went up in the world.

Who was George HILL?
published by Pat Hase - 4 days ago.

The Taunton Courier of August 10th Aug 1831 states that a Martha HILL and Simon HILL were involved in this robbery as well as a William BAKER and G. HILL.  There is a christening of a Simon HILL in Churchill in 1815, s/o John & Mary which seems to suggest that you have the correct George HILL.  Who was Martha HILL?

When Matthew TAVERNER died in 1868 his probate gives his estate as under £450 and by 1861 he was a farmer of 30 acres - So given that he lived in the same area as "your George HILL" it seems very likely that you have the correct man here as well.  Sovereigns kept under the bed to pay tradesmen?

Who was George HILL?
published by daveerasmus - 4 days ago.

I hope you don’t mind my returning to this post but I now have at least 4 DNA matches to people in Australia claiming to be descendants of George HILL. And I am no closer to finding him.

In an effort to break down this particular brick wall, I thought I’d try coming at it from a different direction. In my original post I mentioned that George was found guilty of entering the house of Matthew TAVERNOR and stealing 40 Sovereigns. That is why he was transported to Australia in 1833. I have been searching for Matthew. The only one I can find was living in Blackmoor, Churchill in 1841/1851/1861. He was married to Mary (DYER?) and had 4 children. It looks like this is the right man because in 1841 my 4 x GGF John HILL  and his wife Mary (nee WHITE) were living very close by with some of their children  - they are on the same page of the Census (Class: HO107; Piece 967; Book: 10; Civil Parish: Churchill; County: Somerset; Enumeration District: 8; Folio: 24; Page: 16; Line: 8; GSU roll: 474608). John and Mary were (allegedly) the parents of the elusive George.

But I am concerned about something. 40 Sovereigns was an awful lot of money in 1830 – worth around £4000 in today’s money. It was the equivalent of a decent annual wage. But according to the 1841 Census Matthew was “only” a Carpenter. And at the time of his daughter Ellen’s baptism in 1834 his occupation was given as “Sawyer”. So, is it conceivable that he could have had that much money in his house? If not, should I be looking for another Matthew Taverner?

Joseph STOKES married in Easton in Gordano in 1778
published by daveerasmus - 11 days ago.

You're right, of course. I've had a look at the Portbury records from 1600-1672 to see if there were any STOKES (or variants) there during that period. But I can't find any. So, it looks like the first STOKES arrived in Portbury after 1672. But, from where....?

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