Tag Archives: London

Celestina at the Old Bailey: a Christmas tale pt 16

In the last episode of this true story, Celestina Sommer was in Newgate Prison awaiting her trial at another iconic bastion of London’s penal system – the Old Bailey. The Central Criminal Court, as it was, and is, more formally … Continue reading

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Posted in Celestina | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

The mob chases the witnesses: a Christmas tale pt 13

In the last post in this series, we looked at the inquest into the murder of Celestina Christmas by her mother, held at the North Pole tavern on New North Rd. This time I’ll focus on what happened immediately afterwards: … Continue reading

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Posted in London | Tagged , , , , , , | 12 Comments

A Christmas bonus

In my last post about the murder of Celestina Christmas and the story behind it, we visited Murray Street (now Grove) where Mary McNeil killed her children. And over on the Worldwide Genealogy blog, I posted about how I tracked … Continue reading

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Posted in Celestina | Tagged , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Julia Harrington’s evidence: a Christmas tale pt 10

Julia Harrington, wife of Thomas and mother of Catharine, Hannah and of my 2x great-grandmother Rebecca Harrington, was about to have a terrible shock. It was Monday, 18 February, 1856, the day Charles and Celestina Sommer were charged at Clerkenwell … Continue reading

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Posted in London | Tagged , , , , , , , | 30 Comments

A Christmas tale pt 4 – what next for Celestina Elizabeth?

Welcome back to the Celestina Christmas story. In the previous episode, we left little Celestina (born 1846) living with my ancestors, Thomas and Julia Harrington and their daughters, Hannah and Rebecca (my 2x great-grandmother). Her mother, Celestina Elizabeth Christmas, was … Continue reading

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Posted in Genealogy, London, Nicholas Delaney | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

A Christmas tale pt 2: The first Celestina

Welcome back for the second part of our Christmas tale. Last time we met little Celestina Christmas, a ‘visitor’ at the Harringtons’ house in Hackney when the 1851 census was taken. I began to wonder about Celestina. I’ve got quite … Continue reading

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Posted in Genealogy, London | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

A Christmas tale: part 1

Welcome, friends and neighbours. Take a seat near the fire. Help yourself to some punch, or tea, and of course a slice of this fine cake. The sun’s set this Christmas Day and, as you know, in the time of … Continue reading

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Posted in Nicholas Delaney | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

The Shoestring Genealogist: two offers for UK research

Researching genealogy on a tight budget? Family bills leaving little cash for family history? I know the feeling. Which is why I’m starting the Shoestring Genealogist, an occasional series of posts to help those of us looking for ancestors – … Continue reading

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Posted in Genealogy, Ireland, London | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

The thief up the chimney: Old Bailey Online 10th anniversary post

This is a tale of larceny and pubs – and a certain amount of naivety. The combination was disastrous for James Thomas Richards, a 20-year-old Thames waterman, and lucky for me, since he’s my great-great grandfather and met my 2x … Continue reading

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Posted in Australia, Convicts, London, Trial | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Deep down in Deptford (and thumbs up for archives)

Deep into Deptford’s history, that is, looking for secrets in the streets. And possibly finding my great-great-great-great grandparents – how exciting! Today, June 9th, is International Archives Day and I’m hugely grateful to all the archivists and the archives, small … Continue reading

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Posted in Australia, Convicts, Genealogy | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

My ancestor was from London – where do I start?

I’ve concentrated mainly on Nicholas Delaney, Sarah Marshall and John Simpson in this blog so far. They are three of my earliest Australians, all convicts. And because convicts tend to be well-documented, they are easier to trace. And I’ve been … Continue reading

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Posted in Convicts, Genealogy | Tagged , , , , , , | 24 Comments