It is obvious that a map is a visual aid to research, but yesterday I was sitting thinking, as you do and reached for this map of the parishes within Surrey – the map is from the West Surrey Family History Society, of which I have been a long time member. The map is of course copyrighted to the Society and one of their members, June Rudman.
The map as you can see shows each of the parishes within the county and then shows the neighbouring counties, given left to right and highlighted in yellow – Hants (Hampshire), Berks (Berkshire), Bucks (Buckinghamshire), Middlesex, Kent and then at the bottom, Sussex. Given that I was thinking about my Butcher One-Name Study, from which my two lines feature in Surrey and at least one of them prior to 1705 in Sussex I wanted to see the parishes that run alongside the Surrey and Sussex border.
As the map shows, the parishes that I have coloured, with as much finesse as a three year old, my parishes are in the west of the county in the main – although this map actually features more than my Butcher lines, the pink segment is Woking which is representative of my Orlando line.
In short though, this is a back to basic step for me and how my ancestry is located in the County; and I would urge others to follow a similar pattern, if they feel the need – it was 40 minutes or so well spent (though I note my colouring has not improved!).
Even though I know the County reasonably well, it was useful to see it in black and white and to be able to focus on several locations and family groups – one example is the surname of my great great Grandmother, Sarah who had the surname of OCKLEY which happens to also be the name of a parish within the County; located on the Surrey and Sussex border.
In following back from Sarah Ockley, her parents were Peter Ockley and Maria Bolton, who married in Wonersh, which is coloured purple, Peter’s parents were Peter Ockley and Charity Collyer, they married in St Martha’s in 1773. St Martha’s does not appear on the map, but is in again in the purple bit! After they married they lived in Wonersh. Going back to the final generation I have, Peter’s father was another Peter Ockley and he married his wife, Rebecca Downer in Reigate in 1738 (Reigate is the lone parish coloured blue).
From this focus, I also noted that the use of Charity as a given name. Does that have bearings on the religious preference of her or her family? I have no notes that predate Peter Ockley and his wife Rebecca nor have I explored previously any links to the parish of Ockley.
I did a search for the surname of Ockley using Forebears.io. The spread of the surname across England and Wales in 1881 is shown here with the dark red patch on the map reflecting Surrey and the next dark patch on the map is reflecting Norfolk.
Why is that the case? or is there perhaps no reasoning?
I scrolled down the page to look at the numbers reflected on the map.
Here is the results:
The top two counties are Surrey and Norfolk, with 31 and 19 respectively. Those are significant numbers and if you look at the rest of the there is a distinct difference, between 19 and the next five counties with 4 each.
This might be something I work with whilst the next Pharos One-Name Studies course (901) is underway (starts next week!), lots to think about and mull over.