HGS Family History Groups
We meet monthly to discuss the opportunity to share, learn, exchange ideas and information, as well as to help us each further explore our family history projects. Why not come along and see for yourself?
- You can attend meetings of any of our 14 active groups. All groups meet in the evening with the exception of the Afternoon Group – see page via Groups Menu for details.
- Visit their pages via the Groups Menu to see their monthly programme of talks, news and articles. Contact a Group Organiser using the form at the bottom of each Group’s page.
- Come and meet like-minded people. HGS Group Meetings are free to members and prospective members.
- They are a good way to gain some new insights on how to further explore your family history.
- Whether you are a beginner or an expert, with a family from within or outside of Hampshire, you will always be welcome and find someone who has something new and interesting to share.
HGS Group Locations
Click on a pin for the address and directions.
HGS Family History Group and Society Events for the next 3 months
- March 1, 2017 - New Forest Group: The Story of the Africa Queen - Kevin Patience
- March 6, 2017 - Portsmouth Group: Harlots, Dung and Glory: part 3 of the history of Portsmouth - Andrew Negus
- March 6, 2017 - Romsey Group: "Don't throw that out!": the delights of ephemera - Dr Jane Howells
Ephemera refers to (usually) printed paper and card items, not really intended to be kept but planned to provide temporary information needed just for a short time. This talk suggests examples of the types of things you could find and what they might tell you that would throw light on the lives of your ancestors. Some will refer to individuals by name; others will provide the context of life in a community at a particular time.
- March 8, 2017 - Gosport Group: Frank Norman Fox - Jane Fox
A case study in tracing and interpreting records relating to those who serviced in the Army during WW1. Documents discussed are those which relate to the awards of Medals, Service records, War diary’s, Memorials, Newspapers.
- March 9, 2017 - Fareham Group: Napoleonic Prisoner of War Work: some Hampshire connections - Tony Cross, former Curator of the Curtis Museum, Alton
In the latter part of the 1700's and the early 1800's, Britain and France were at war. Prisoners were taken by both sides. Tony will talk about the legacy left by some of those French prisoners who spent their time in Hampshire.
- March 9, 2017 - Andover Group: Searching for Surnames: Challenges, Pitfalls and the Downright Ridiculous - Kirsty Gray
- March 9, 2017 - Fleet & Farnborough Group: Writing Your Family History - Chris Lightfoot, founder of iScribbles
Tips and advice on how to start developing stories based on your family history research.
- March 10, 2017 - New Milton & Christchurch Group: Westover Hall alias The Beach House - Daphne Austin
Daphne will talk about the history of another famous Milford building.
- March 13, 2017 - Alton Group: Vaccination - Benjamin Jesty & the Dorset Dairy Maids - Helen Jesty
Helen Jesty, due to speak about her relative Benjamin Jesty, will be joined by Patrick Pead. Patrick has unmasked the full story of the origins of vaccination to give us a fresh perspective - one that challenges the version in most of our history books. His presentation highlights the growing recognition for a little known figure of the past, a humble farmer whose homespun ingenuity is worthy of celebration. Please click the event link for more details.
- March 14, 2017 - Fair Oak Group: The Rise of the Railway: Part 1 - Chris Humby
- March 15, 2017 - Ringwood Group: Deaf Robert, Lame Basil and Blind Peter - Cheryl Butler
- March 20, 2017 - Southampton Group: Winchester - Andrew Negus
- March 22, 2017 - Basingstoke Group: Members’ Presentations: My Immigrant / Emigrant Ancestor
Do you have family that came here from overseas or left Britain to start life in another country? With the records available, they’re easier to find. Our members will talk about their findings.
- April 3, 2017 - Romsey Group: Members' Evening – To be Arranged
- April 7, 2017 - New Milton & Christchurch Group: The Cholera Years - John Avery ***Please note - First Friday to avoid Good Friday.
Where we would be without clean drinking water?
- April 10, 2017 - Alton Group: The Parish Chest - Ann McKenzie
This talk covers all the main records that were stored within parish chests. It describes them and, to help extend your research, explains where to find today those that have survived.
- April 11, 2017 - Fair Oak Group: The Tichbourne Case – John Avery
- April 12, 2017 - Gosport Group: Gosport slide show – Bob Harrop
- April 13, 2017 - Fareham Group: HMS Hear My Story: The Last 100 Years - Jo Valentine
HMS Hear my Story tells the undiscovered stories from the ordinary men, women and ships which have made the Navy's amazing history over the last 100 years.
- April 13, 2017 - Andover Group: Hidden Mormon Ancestors - Maggie Eltham
- April 13, 2017 - Fleet & Farnborough Group: AGM and Members' Talks *** Please note this is the FIRST Thursday of the month, rather than the usual second
- April 17, 2017 - Southampton Group: *** No meeting as it is Easter Monday ***
- April 19, 2017 - Afternoon Group: Members’ Presentations: What did you find in the 1939 Register?
The release of this Register was a bonus for family researchers. What surprises did you find?
- April 19, 2017 - Ringwood Group: Fireman in WW2 – Alan House
- April 26, 2017 - Basingstoke Group: WW2 POW Camps: Basingstoke - Geoff Palmer
Was there a Prisoner Of War camp in Basingstoke during the Second World War?Where was it? Who was interred there? Did the POWs mix with the local residents?What work did they do?Why are there German War Graves in Basingstoke Cemetery? Geoff will answer these questions and present some background information about POWs in Britain in the 1940s
- May 2, 2017 - Romsey Group: The GRO Index – Just How Accurate Is It? - Celia Heritage ***Please note this is Tuesday due to the Bank Holiday
The truth about the accuracy of the GRO index may make you review your research technique and help knock down some brick walls! Professional genealogist, Celia Heritage, explains how mistakes and inaccuracies in the index, poor transcriptions, surname variants, BMDs not being registered where you expect them, etc. can make life for the researcher very difficult.
- May 8, 2017 - Alton Group: Members’ Evening: Have you found anything in the Parish Chest?
- May 9, 2017 - Fair Oak Group: ‘Turn Left at the Hippos' - Lucinda Thursfield
Random Jottings from the Registration Service.
- May 10, 2017 - Gosport Group: The Tichbourne Case – John Avery
- May 11, 2017 - Andover Group: Members’ Evening
- May 11, 2017 - Fareham Group: Members’ Evening - What my relative did during the War
- May 11, 2017 - Fleet & Farnborough Group: British Relatives Overseas - Else Churchill, Society of Genealogy (SoG)
The talk tells of the British who migrated abroad and the records relating to former colonies and Europe. Else is The Genealogist at the SoG, leading the Society’s education and publishing programmes. She is also a columnist for Family Tree magazine.
- May 12, 2017 - New Milton & Christchurch Group: Romsey Prisoner of War Camp - Phoebe Merrick
More about war-time Romsey.
- May 15, 2017 - Southampton Group: Writing your family history - Chris Lightfoot
- May 17, 2017 - Afternoon Group: Southwick Priory - Harvey Griffiths
Choose a Group
Portsmouth Couple Married in India – 1899
A couple from Portsmouth married in Bombay in 1899. The announcement was in a Hampshire newspaper nearly three months later. Who were they and why were they in India?
The Internet Library of Early Journals
Researching family history means having to explore many avenues, one useful free resource is the Internet Library of Early Journals
The Curtis Museum, Alton – A Local Resource
Local history museums can be a great resource for those researching their family history. The Curtis Museum in Alton Hampshire has some interesting topic material on local places and people.
Harry Selfridge and Highcliffe Hampshire
The Selfridge family had a very interesting connection to the county of Hampshire that family historians will find intriguing.
Jane Austen’s 200th Anniversary
Hampshire is known as ‘Jane Austen County’, why not join HGS Alton Family History Group with regular meetings, help, and immerse yourself in the background of Jane Austen as she lived her life around Alton.