January 2018

I take this opportunity to wish “all my readers” a very Happy New Year

I have been trying to overcome my latest brick wall which is that I have  too many William Shouts connected to the same father – or one William with too many marriages! Either way some detailed detective work has been required to get the right people in the right place ( and especially connected to the right spouse). Hopefully I have got to grips with the problem and just have to lay out my hypothesis to prove it works.

I have updated the page on William Shout but there is still more to do following my visit to the Minster late last year where I was shown round by John David who is following in Williams footsteps as the mason in charge of works.

And on top of that  I’ve just found two more Benjamins – see the “Ones I can’t place” page. They were distillers in London – but of vinegar or gin I don’t yet know!

November 2017

While on holiday in the North East of England I have been fortunate to be able to visit York Minster to walk in the footsteps of William Shout, master mason for the restoration of the Minster  between 1780’s – 1820’s.

The present master mason, John David, very kindly showed me the work of the present team of masons carrying out the continuous maintenance of the fabric of the Minster. He also showed me  wooden templates produced by William for the masons to carve many of the delicate features of the structure. There were also scale drawings of various facades of the minster. These are incredibly detailed and must have been very difficult to draw with the metal nibbed dipping pens of the day

I was able to visit the archives and look through Williams Day Book between the years 1805 ~ 1825, this was fascinating because of the details of the wages paid to the masons as well as the purchase of materials and many personal notes. A return visit is definitely necessary to absorb more details of his day to day life.

We also visited the Masons’ Loft where drawings were made and templates generated. Fascinating to see but the climb up some 65 narrow steps in a tight spiral staircase was a bit of a struggle. Then another 30 or so steps took us to the roof of the Chapter House where there was a very small door to access the ancient structure.

There is a downside unfortunately! As part of my reviewing of the draft page on William I realised that in fact I seem to have a surfeit of Williams, all connected to Helmsley. So now I have to trawl through my research notes again to find if indeed there are one, two or three!

October 2017

I have had some success in tracking the family of Wonderful Chertsey who married Mary Montevideo Shout. It doesn’t move us forward in the Shout line but was an interesting diversion. Wonderful was in business with his father as a painter and glazier in the East End of London.

Unfortunately I seem to be easily diverted from my defined research plan!! When something pops up in an on line search off I go…

I  had an interesting day at the London Metropolitan Archives recently. I spent most of the time looking at copies of the Sun Insurance ledgers of policies taken out by Benjamin, Robert, James Tagus, and Joseph Shout. Joseph was a greengrocer in Molton St. but where does he originate from? Another one for the “Ones I can’t place” page!

I have also had a weeks holiday in Portugal. Every time I go to Lisbon and see the River Tagus I contemplate the activities of John Shout the ship owner and his son James Tagus. – but never find anything out!


September 2017

Work continues with odds and ends added from time to time.

There have been a couple of additions to the “Ones I can’t Place” page where my constant trawling through the on line facilities turn up interesting possible relatives. If any one recognises them or has more information please do let me know!!

I am in the throes of trying to compile a list of the things I want to look up in London at Society of Genealogists, London Metropolitan Archives and The National Archives. It is a few years since I visited any of them so will have to renew reader tickets etc.

I recently had the opportunity to visit York Minster to meet with the current master mason regarding the works of William Shout where they still have some of the templates that he using 200 years ago. Unfortunately due to a sudden bereavement I was unable to go but hope to rearrange for my next visit to the North. Fingers crossed

Enjoy looking through what I have put up so far and come back often to see when there is more…





April 10th 2017

Well, at long last I have got the page on Civil Engineers into a suitable state for publishing. There is probably still a lot more that could be included about their works particularly regarding the development of Sunderland Harbour, but for now at least I will quit while I’m ahead and move on to another topic.

Hopefully it won’t be too long before there is more to see on the site



MARCH 2017

Well it’s been a while since I posted on here. Its not that I have not been doing anything related – just not getting round to posting about it. Much of it is “behind the scenes” stuff, trying to make sense of some of what I already have.

This has been particularly true of the page about Sunderland and the civil engineers who worked on the development of the harbour.

Then of course I lead myself down little side alleys that, though interesting, don’t actually move us very much forward.

This is true of some marriages I found in Sunderland from Boyds Index. the first is Hannah Shout to George Wilkinson in 1779, then Elizabeth Shout married Thomas Watson in 1782 and lastly Lanyell (or Lanial or Lionel) Shout married Mary Shepherd (or Shipherd) in 1811.

If anyone has information relating to any of them please get in touch!

Progress 24th October 2016

I have been adding bits and pieces, for example I’ve made a start on the story of Robert Shout Douglas. There are quite a few newspaper items to include still. I am particularly interested in how a ropemaker in Sunderland married a squires daughter in Felton Northumberland.

When I was reading the latest edition of the Cleveland FHS Journal, I was reminded of recent correspondence  with Barbara Shout. There was an item that Barbara and her husband Mike  had donated a collection of old photos etc from the Cowton branch of the family, to Durham University. Hopefully one day I will get up there to see what treasures it holds! I am also corresponding with a “cousin” in North America on the subject of the Quaker families and those who travelled to the US and Canada.

As a change from the straight forward compilation of details of families “up north”, I have started trying to pull together some form of family “reconstruction” for Devon and Cornwall. At present everyone looks totally disconnected but I will keep on trying… There is further confusion because the name STROUT appears to be confused with SHOUT in some of the FreeBMD entries. STROUTs in FamilySearch have some of the same names in the same parishes but with other children or spouse. I feel a trip to KEW is going to be the only way to dig into this dilemma!

Hope you find something of interest in my site – please get in touch-

Progress 1st October 2016

I can’t believe where the year is going!!

Progress continues to be the addition of snippets for various pages. Most recently are those for South Shields and Stockton. I have also put a bit more on the Australia page regarding the migration of the family of Charles Lutwyche Shout to Perth W.A.

I recently emailed all the people on my mailing list soliciting any input they might be able to add. As I have mentioned previously – it is all welcome



22nd September 2016 Progress

Well “The Plan” is coming together with mind maps for the overall site as well as individual maps for the separate pages. Mind maps are a good way of visualising what needs to be done and showing the degree of completion – but the downside is of course  it is very obvious when progress is less than you would like!

I am currently trying to delve into the backgrounds of the “other” Shouts in London – the ancestors and descendants of Alfred William. They seem to make a habit of avoiding census nights in the early days but I will find them …

I am also trying to do some family reconstruction on the Devon and Cornwall branches. The note about spelling variants that I have just added to the home page suggest that I might need to widen the net  a bit in Family Search, although I was hoping not to get dragged into the variants too much at this stage.

Will just have to see what comes out

13th September 2016

Still beavering away adding snippets to various pages. In time I will firm up on the detail of some of the people mentioned but for now I just try to add as many interesting characters as I can, to populate the pages with something.

I am working my way through the various branches of the family with as many twigs as I can but “the plan” is still pending!

I have put some details of the Lincolnshire branch but there is still more to come, as well as the family of John Shout the ship owner of Portsmouth and London