Tracking ancestry in England

Old Jan 28th, 2001, 09:04 AM
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Tracking ancestry in England

While in London in late March, I'd like to try to obtain a copy of my grandmother's birth certificate. She was born in London in 1906 to immigrants from Odessa who changed the family name to Greene. The family moved to New York City a few years later; the original family name has been lost; and my grandmother has been dead a half century. Any leads on who I could contact to get a copy of her birth certificate in hopes of learning what the family name was in Odessa? Many thanks!
Old Jan 28th, 2001, 09:38 AM
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genealogy nut motherinlaw on the case.
Old Jan 28th, 2001, 02:27 PM
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The Family Records Centre, 1 Myddleton St (Islington area of London) may have what you need. Their website is Good luck.
Old Jan 29th, 2001, 12:20 PM
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the official address is

Family Records
Centre, Middleton Place, Middleton Street, London, E.C.1
I don't know about the name change but there is a Public Records Office,
Kew, Richmond, TW9 4DM -

A web address may follow. Sorry for delay but everything is different in England.
Old Jan 29th, 2001, 07:01 PM
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Many thanks for the URL, which did lead (albeit somewhat circuitously) to the right place. Not sure I'm going to get an answer, but at least I know where to look. Thanks again to all!
Old Feb 5th, 2001, 02:15 PM
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Finally my ma-in-law came up with the goods

She sent me this e-mail
"You must think I am feel!!!! I just realised you want addresses in
London. I was sent a supplement from a paper by Phil Brookes (friend of
George) some time ago which has lots of contact addresses. Had a look at
that and found the Public Records Office - The other
research worth looking at might be"

Hope this helps!
Old Feb 17th, 2001, 10:41 AM
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The Family Records Centre is in Finsbury, near the Sadlers' Wells Theatre. The records are kept in bound volumes (not computerised), and each year is broken up into quarters. The indexes are very basic - you only get the full information on the actual certificate. The index, if I recall correctly, contains the name of the child, the mother's maiden name, the district where it was born, and a reference number. Firstly, I hope that the child was registered as a Greene, or Green, because if you don't know the surname you will have really big problems. Knowing the mother's maiden name is obviously a big help. If you have some idea about where in London she was born, that will also be very useful. The districts are often the names of parishes, so you will need to ask for help if you are trying to match an area of London to a registration district. Unfortunately, it is easy to order the wrong certificate if you don't have all the facts, so you should think about doing this at the start of your trip to allow time for a second attempt. They do not produce the information instantly - there is a delay, even with the much more expensive 'express' service.
If you know more or less exactly where the family lived (ie to within a street or two), and they were here in 1901, you might be able to find them on the Census. But looking at the Census randomly is a complete non-starter - there are millions of names.
Depending on your family's religion, you may find that there are baptismal/ christening records kept by the relevant church independent of the State's records. It may be worth hunting this information down on the internet before you go.

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