Saturday, 13 June 2009

Professional What?

Firstly, I’d like to thank Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, authors of ‘Good Omens’, for the title of this blog. Anathema Device, the Professional Descendant of the novel, is not a genealogist but it seems like a good job description for someone who has based a career on who their ancestors were. Anathema is a descendant of the witch Agnes Nutter and appears to have inherited some of her ancestor’s talents. Having long suspected there were some Nutters in my own family tree I feel a certain kinship with her!

These days I spend most of my time researching other people’s ancestors and I felt it was time my lot started earning their keep. This blog will be a place to tell some of their stories, to celebrate them and to air some of the family’s dirty laundry. I also intend to include some extracts from the records I come across whilst carrying out research and to discuss some of the broader questions raised by the study of family history.

My own ancestors are a mix of English, Scottish and Irish. A fairly ordinary bunch but at times quite a challenge to trace. What fascinates me about family history is not only the process of research, piecing together small scraps of information to reconstruct a person’s life, but also what it can reveal about social history and human behaviour, the insight it gives into a world that can seem very different from our own but populated by individuals with our strengths and our weaknesses, our virtues and our failings.


  1. Hi Professional Descendant!

    Welcome to the genealogy blogosphere. I look forward to hearing your stories and reading about your work.

    Twitter works great, doesn't it?

    Cheers -- Randy Seaver

  2. Welcome! I can't wait to hear your stories and get to know you and your family better. I will follow you on Twitter also. My Twitter name is webduck

  3. Welcome to the genealogy blogosphere! Let us know what else you need to get settled! We look forward to your posts.

    Thomas MacEntee

  4. Professional Descendant -

    Love the blog title, creative!

    And welcome to the world of GeneaBloggers. You're a great addition.


  5. As a professional genealogist whose roots lie in the UK and Scotland, I will enjoy reading your blog and am excited to be your friend on Facebook!

    Welcome to the blogosphere!

    Midge Frazel

  6. Congrats on your first blog entry! Looking forward to reading more.

    Easley, SC USA

  7. Another Welcome of this side of the pond, with roots on your side.

    Look forward to following you.

    Have Fun.


  8. Hi and welcome. I just want to say I love your blog name. Nothings says it better then this. Good luck

  9. Welcome to the blogging world. I also love the title you chose for your blog. I look forwarded to reading more in your blog.

  10. What a wonderful title! I look forward to following your blog. Welcome to the blogosphere. Enjoy!

  11. Welcome to our motley crew! I'm looking forward to reading how it is done on the other side of the pond.

  12. Thanks for all the kind comments. I hope I won't disappoint you!

  13. Love your blog name!!! I, too, enjoy the craziness of genealogical research. It puts all those lovely skills you picked up at university to work and I like to think it's good exercise for the brain! (When it's not being damaged running into the proverbial brick walls that genealogy throws up!) Look forward to reading your future posts.