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Author 1911 Census for England and Wales
Peter Burgess

Joined: 01/07/2008
Location: Merstham. Or is it Godstone ...... ?

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 08:41:18
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[web link]

Does anyone know if, as in previous releases, this will be free to search in reference libraries? The 1901 census online was pay to view, searching by name, I seem to recall. As I want to simply browse records looking for miners and quarrymen I search by occupation, an option not available for 1901 online and grossly expensive even if I did know everyone's name. So scanning fiche records was the only practical alternative. Not everyone is a genealogy anorak! Guns

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IP: 81.144.191.248 Edited: 13/01/2009 08:43:04 by Peter Burgess
sougher

Joined: 16/10/2008
Location: Hampshire

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 11:06:38
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It is going to be costly to start with, and from a website address given yesterday on Rootsweb DerbysGen website i.e. http:///blog.1911census.co.uk it appears that not all counties are covered yet. I couldn't find any reference to it being available in reference libraries to view free yet, but there is a lot of information that you might find useful. I am assuming that it will be a while before free viewing in reference libraries will become available. It appears that some sensitive information is being withheld until 2012. Trust this helps. IP: 86.152.20.48
Peter Burgess

Joined: 01/07/2008
Location: Merstham. Or is it Godstone ...... ?

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 11:12:08
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I think I'll pop round the local library at lunchtime and ask what they know. They have all the census records on fiche or film for all the local parishes up to 1901. I'm particularly keen to find out how many migrant workers there were from France working in the old quarries at Godstone, growing mushrooms. I was expecting to have to wait until 2011 or 2012, so if they have it by 2010 it will be better than I was expecting. Smile

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grahami

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Joined: 29/01/2007
Location: Telford, Shropshire

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 12:39:11
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Personally I can't understand how anything like this which is pre WW1 can be sensitive or why it needs to be witheld! My parents, both long dead, were born during WW1, so I doubt I'm going to get access to the census results which contain them for ten years or so.

Grahami

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sougher

Joined: 16/10/2008
Location: Hampshire

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 13:40:37
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Searching the internet for more information as to why the 1911 census is being released early, I discovered that it was originally going to be made available in January, 2012 by the National Archives, but the Information Commissioner in December, 2006 made a ruling by which the National Archives was forced to make the information available now. I can't find the exact wording but I think it was something to do with the fact that the 1911 census didn't carry a one hundred year closure rule, whereas previous census did.

Apparently the "personally sensitive" information which will not be available from this census until the 3rd January, 2012 includes [quote from website http://www.1911census.org.uk/ - "details of infirmity or other health-related information (n.b. from my family history on earlier census returns certain individuals have been described as lunatics!), information about family relationships which would usually have been kept secret and information about very young children who were born in prison".

Personally I agree with Grahami about how this information can be witheld, but then I don't agree with charges being made for viewing it. This information concerned our ancestors and surely belonged to them, my parents are on it having been born in the early 1890's. Incidently working in Local Govenment at the time I was an enumerator on the 1961 census, it was hard work but very interesting. Don't forget that after this census is produced the next one will be the 1921 one and then there is a gap until the1951 one. One was taken in 1931 but destroyed by fire during WW2, and the one for 1941 was not taken because of the war.
IP: 86.152.20.48 Edited: 13/01/2009 17:09:48 by sougher
carnkie

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Joined: 07/09/2007
Location: camborne, cornwall

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 14:14:50
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I think you mention the word lunatic advisedly. It must be remembered that this period was the center of the great eugenics debate and ultimately led to the Mental Deficiency Act of 1913. The Eugenic Education Society (EES), which was formed in 1907, focussed their attention on the feeble-minded (or those they considered feeble-minded) in the years preceding the Act. So there may well be some very sensitive, and in my opinion, incorrect information lying around.

Edit.
When I think about it the 1921 census might be even more dodgy.

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IP: 79.74.135.82 Edited: 13/01/2009 14:30:00 by carnkie
Peter Burgess

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Location: Merstham. Or is it Godstone ...... ?

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 14:43:14
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sougher wrote:

... Personally I agree with Grahami about how this information can be witheld, but then I don't agree with charges being made for viewing it. This information concerned our ancestors and surely belonged to them, my parents are on it having been born in the early 1890's. ...


There is no charge to look at the 1901 records if you go to a library or record office to do it. The charge (for 1901) relates specifically to downloading information on the internet. I would hope the information for 1911 will be readily available and free to search by eye as earlier records have been. There was no shortage of people searching 1901 when I went to do it! My guess is the demand is still there, seeing as how only well-off geneologists will be doing extensive (expensive) searching online.

Oh, by the way, the little library next to the office only opened at 2pm so I will pop in after work to ask what they know.


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IP: 81.144.191.248 Edited: 13/01/2009 14:44:11 by Peter Burgess
Peter Burgess

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 14:54:54
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I am particularly keen to see how much quarrying activity was still going in 1911 at Godstone. By 1901 the industry seemed to be pretty much in terminal decline, and mushroom growers seemed to take over much of the workings in the next 10 years. However, a 1914 report claimed that there was a revival of the quarrying side of things, albeit probably very temporary. The number of recorded quarrymen in the parish seems to be a reasonable indicator over the decades since 1841. It will also be interesting to see if the quarrying families switched from employment in quarrying to mushroom growing. The m/r growers seem to do a lot of quarry-related things like building drystone walls and installing props. The census is an excellent resource for an otherwise little-documented activity.

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sougher

Joined: 16/10/2008
Location: Hampshire

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 18:25:47
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Carnkie - I agree with you that there was an awful lot of incorrect information on earlier census (can you imagine what the 2001 census will be like? with it having to be posted back and not collected and checked by emunerators; perhaps many forms were not completed and returned! thus giving false returns of the population of the UK). The part of my childrens family tree with the description "lunatics" on it we know is wrong, as one elderly retired male who must have suffered from dementia had been a C of E vicar. Two females had been born late to an elderly mother in her mid 40's, they were being cared for in a boarding house by a nurse (along with other similar people) and in all probability were Downs Syndrone children or autistic.

Peter - I know that there is no charge to look at census records at Local Study libraries if one is able to visit same. However, there are many similar people to myself retired, disabled (I have suffered from Menieres Disease for the past 56 years, I am severely deaf in both ears, have to wear two hearing aids - I sympathize with people who have worked on heavy machines in mines, quarries, etc and are similarly affected by deafness), suffer problems with the telephone (even with amplified ones), no longer drive, nor able to go out on one's own unaided, and living hundreds of miles away from the Record Office and Libraries of one's home county. I loved visiting the Sheffield and Derbyshire Record Offices and researching lead mining records when I was able to, but they haven't always been around. That is when the internet gives one freedom to carry out research on one's interests, but it can also be very costly. The information now available at Records Offices and Libraries is vast compared to a few years ago. I believe that the 1881 census is free to search on the Ancestry.com website. There is a very good website for Wirksworth where the owner John Palmer has put up a lot of census records for local villages around Wirksworth. I was one of the contributors to the Bonsall Village book and the census on his site was heavily referred to for help in compiling the book, like you we found it to be a help in finding out how employment had changed in the village from 1841 onwards. We were even able to trace the whereabouts of men from the village who had left gaffitii in mines on Bonsall Moor that they had worked at the end of the 19th century.

I will be very interested in the information that you find at your local library. I personally think that it will be a while yet before free access is given via the libraries to the 1911 census, I think that the intention is to make as much money out of the project as is possible.

Incidently I'm not a genealogy anorak! - I started my family research to see if the Menieres Disease gene went back through the generations (I am a member of the Menieres Society and very little is known about what causes it) which it does, going back through about three generations of my KEELING ancestors of Bakewell and Ashford-in-the-Water who were marble masons at the famed Ashford Black Marble works.

IP: 86.152.20.48 Edited: 13/01/2009 19:27:32 by sougher
Peter Burgess

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Location: Merstham. Or is it Godstone ...... ?

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 18:35:47
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Well, it is only a small local library with no local studies section so the staff are more or less there to just manage the lending of books. They suggested I contact the Surrey History Centre (newspeak for "Record Office") to see what is going to happen.


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Peter Burgess

Joined: 01/07/2008
Location: Merstham. Or is it Godstone ...... ?

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 18:41:07
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I should have added that I have nothing against genealogists at all. It just disappoints me that it is line of study that has become the target of money-makers out to exploit an innocent pastime. Whenever I search for a particular name in connection with local quarry studies, I get directed to genealogy websites that require me to subscribe in order to retrieve information. Now when I google names I often type in the search bar (NAME) + (PLACE) - "genealogy" - "family" just to eliminate all the sites that are very unlikely to be useful.


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GolowDydh

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Joined: 24/03/2008
Location: St Agnes Cornwall

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1911 Census for England and Wales
Posted: 13/01/2009 22:31:43
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I assume that the census is regarded as an asset and as such the government department like local councils have to follow the "best value" rules which pretty much entails making as much money out of something as possible.
Members of Cornwall libraries can go online in the library and look up things and download items uk wide from ancestry.com free of charge, but it looks like 1911 is going to be only available via Find My Past which will be very annoying for those with access or subscribing to other services.

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