Skip to main content

Finding Your Ancestors in the Database

This week, we look in more detail at the great grandfather that Deceased Online user Barry Rees recently found in the database.

Last week I mentioned that Barry Rees from Pembrokeshire was one of the winners of our tie-break competition to win a copy of Nick Barratt’s Greater London. Barry’s winning entry revealed that he was only able to find his ancestor’s grave thanks to Deceased Online’s digitized records for Plumstead Cemetery. He also told us that, “I still have his ship’s tool chest and tools.”

Barry Rees with his great grandfather's tool chest
Barry's great grandfather, Albert Alfred Scott, was born in Woolwich, not far from Plumstead in 1866. However, Barry knew that for much of his life, Albert worked as a ship’s joiner at Sheerness Dockyard on the east Kent coast. As Barry had inherited the ship’s tool chest and tools, he was always keen to find out where Albert was buried.

By using the database, Barry discovered not only the grave of his great grandfather, but also that of Albert’s parents, Barry’s great great grandparents, Abraham John Scott (died May 1897) and Mary Ann Scott (nee Selves; died 4 June 1907). The grave details revealed they were all buried together.

Albert died on 24 May 1929, and was buried in Plumstead Cemetery six days later. At the time of his death, aged 62, Albert was living in nearby Eltham. 

Page from the burial register of Plumstead Cemetery showing the entry for Albert Alfred Scott on the bottom row.
Thanks to the grave location map that can be found under Albert’s entry on the database, Barry has at last been able to visit his great grandfather’s final resting place. He has kindly allowed is to include a photograph of it here.

Photograph of the tombstone of Barry Rees' ancestors in Plumstead Cemetery
If, like Barry, you have discovered ancestors in the Deceased Online database, do let us know via the comments box below, or on our Facebook and Twitter pages!

Next week, we’ll be adding most (if not ALL) of the remaining records for East London’s Manor Park Cemetery. Currently, we have all recorded from 1931 onwards on the website and next week we’ll be adding the earlier ones.

We’ll be writing about the older records and the personalities associated with them in this historic old East London Cemetery in next week’s blog.


  1. most interesting, most essential, good work thank you

  2. Thanks Emma, this is realy interesting. I used Deceased Online to find out where my Hardiman relatives, especially the murdering Alf, are buried and didn't realise how many were buried (even from different families) under one record. Presumably the graves were unmarked?

  3. Thanks, Suzie. Good to know you found your Hardiman family in the database.

    Usually, if you find a number of unrelated people in the same grave this indicates a common grave. These may or may not be unmarked. Often they are, but the only way of being certain would be to visit. Stones may have been added by later generations. This reminds me a little of Bruce Forsyth's episide of WDYTYA.

  4. Regarding common graves, I found details of my maternal Great Grandmother in Eltham Cemetery. Although there was no memorial stone for my ancestor, thanks to the details of the eight others buried in the same plot - from the deceased online data; two of whom had been commemorated with small memorials, I was able to correctly identify the plot.

  5. Thanks very much for this, Barry. It's wonderful to hear that you have found not just headstones for your family but hard-to-locate plots as well.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

London's Spa Fields

Deceased Online has just uploaded around 114,000 burial records from Spa Fields in the modern London borough of Islington Spa Fields today, with the Church of Our Most Holy Redeemer in the background Spa Fields Burial Ground became notorious in the 19th century for its overcrowded and insanitary conditions. Located in the parish of St James, Clerkenwell, the grave yard was not far from the ever-increasing City of London. Spa Fields was known also as Clerkenwell Fields and Ducking-pond Fields in the late 18th century, hinting at a dark side to what was then a summer evening resort for north Londoners. What would become a cemetery was a ducking pond in the rural grounds of a Spa Fields public house. It was here in 1683 that six children were drowned while playing on the ice. In his History of Clerkenwell (1865) William J. Pinks wrote that visitors, "came hither to witness the rude sports that were in vogue a century ago, such as duck-hunting, prize-fighting, bull-baiting

Wakefield Collection: Cremation Records now available on Deceased Online

Records for both crematoria in Wakefield, Yorkshire have been added to the Deceased Online database Above: Pontefract Crematorium The two sets of crematoria records have been added to Deceased Online 's Wakefield Collection .  Wakefield district contains nineteen cemeteries and two crematoria. Many of the records go back to the mid and late 19th century when the cemeteries opened, and range across a wide geographical area. The full list of  Wakefield  cemeteries live on Deceased Online,  with opening dates in brackets,   is as follows: 1.  Altofts Cemetery  – Church Road, Altofts, Normanton  (1878)   2.  Alverthorpe Cemetery  – St Paul’s Drive, Alverthorpe, Wakefield  (registers from 1955) 3. Castleford Cemetery  – Headfield Road, Castleford  (1857) 4.  Crigglestone Cemetery  – Standbridge Lane, Crigglestone, Wakefield  (1882) 5. Featherstone Cemetery  – Cutsyke Road, North Featherstone  (1874) 6. Ferrybridge Cemetery  – Pontefract Road, Ferrybridge, P

Churck (Rock) Cemetery, Nottingham

Coming soon to the Deceased Online database: two historic cemeteries from Nottingham City Council to add to the Nottingham Collection . This week, I explore the history of the renowned Church Cemetery (also known as the Rock Cemetery) . At first glance, the modern visitor to Nottingham's Church Cemetery may think they have wandered into Kensal Green , or another of London's Magnificent Seven cemeteries. The 13 acre site abounds with the kind of gothic stone monuments and large sarcophogi with which the mid-Victorians liked to remember their dead. Yet look harder and you will find something unique to Nottingham - sandstone caves. Since the middle ages, the area around Nottingham was quarried for its sandstone, now known by the name of a nearby village as "Bulwell sandstone". From 1851, after the cemetery was laid out on the former sandpits, local people grew to know it simply as "The Rock".  Church Cemetery Otherwise known as the Rock Cemetery on a