Archive for April 2012

Sorting Saturday: Hibbitt Family History morphs into Hibbitt & Barnes Family History

Category: What's New at

Over the past few days I've been busy revamping my Hibbitt Family History website and some of you may have noticed that I've rebranded it slightly: - it's now called 'Hibbitt & Barnes Family History' but it's important to mention that the website address hasn't changed. The site remains at and, to give it a fresh look, I've changed the image(s) at the top of the pages, as well as on the blog itself too.

The majority of the old website structure is still in place with one or two alterations. As always, the Sitemap page will help you get around.

The reason for the change: - I've recently begun looking into my husband, Harvey's, ancestry and have already uploaded a very basic tree for his BARNES FAMILY.

So, what's changed?

One of the first things you'll notice when you come to my Home page is the page is a little shorter and now, near the top, there's a pretty graphic with a link to our Family Trees entry page. The Site Search box can be found further down the page but the Search page itself is still available from the Search link in the navigation bar so it can be accessed from any page you happen to be on. I've also moved the 'Latest Blog Headlines' further down and removed my family names from the Home page and, instead, created a new page with an Overview of my Hibbitt Family.

The eagle-eyed amongst you may recall that I used to have a link in the navigation bar entitled 'family tree'. This has now become 'Families'. Click on this link and you'll reach the entry point for both of our HIBBITT and BARNES family trees together with another Site Search box. Further down this page you'll find the instructions that used to reside on the Home page of 'how to explore our family trees' and there are also links to the family pages belonging to all four sets of our grandparents, in case you want to begin navigating our trees from there.

The Photo Gallery, Guestbook and Shop remain the same and the Resources section and Contact page have seen only minor alterations.

Feel free to take a peek and let me know what you think.

Whilst Harvey's tree is still very modest, if you think you might be related to him, please do get in touch. His Barnes, Thomas, Wright, Harvey, Reynolds, Dawes and Treleaven side lived in Newlyn and Paul in Penzance, Cornwall. The Smith family had ties with Selkirk and Dumfries. The Ellen side lived in Seaham Harbour, Durham, but had connections with London and India, and the Bydens and Gardners also lived in London.

[Why Sorting Saturday? This phrase has been included in the title in order to take part in Blogging Prompts at Geneabloggers]

[Note: All content on the Hibbitt Family History website and blog is copyrighted. Click here for conditions of use.]

Workday Wednesday: Fighting the Zulus at Rorke's Drift

Category: Famous Connections

716 Pte. Robert Jones V.C.Last week, whilst I was in London for the day, I paid a visit to the Imperial War Museum. I had a specific reason for going - I wanted to see the medals on display in the Lord Ashcroft Gallery, in particular, those which were awarded to Robert Jones V.C. (1857-1898).

I am related to Robert in two ways; his maternal grandfather, Richard Fryer (1792-1862), was my 4 x great-grandfather, and his maternal great-grandparents, Benjamin Pitcher and Sarah (nee Rice), were my 4 x great-grandparents. Put another way, he was my half 1st cousin 4 times removed as well as my 2nd cousin 3 times removed.

From the letters in his name, it is already apparent that Robert earned the Victoria Cross. In addition, he also received the South Africa Medal (1877-79) with 1 clasp: 1877-8-9.

716 Pte. Robert Jones of the 2nd Battalion/24th Regiment of Foot (later the South Wales Borderers) in Natal, was awarded the Victoria Cross for an act of gallantry in the defence of the hospital at Rorke's Drift against the Zulus on 22nd and 23rd January 1879. The following citation was published in the London Gazette...

War Office, May 2, 1879.
THE Queen has been graciously pleased to signify Her intention to confer the decoration of the Victoria Cross on the undermentioned Officers and Soldiers of Her Majesty's Army, whose claims have been submitted for Her Majesty's approval, for their gallant conduct in the defence of Rorke's Drift, on the occasion of the attack by the Zulus, as recorded against their names, viz.:-
Regiment: 2nd Battalion 24th Regiment.
Names: Private William Jones and Private Robert Jones.
Acts of Courage for which recommended: In another ward, facing the hill, Private William Jones and Private Robert Jones defended the post to the last, until six out of the seven patients it contained had been removed. The seventh, Sergeant Maxfield, 2nd Battalion 24th Regiment, was delirious from fever. Although they had previously dressed him, they were unable to induce him to move. When Private Robert Jones returned to endeavour to carry him away, he found him being stabbed by the Zulus as he lay on his bed.

In 1964, the Battle of Rorke's Drift was immortalised in the film, Zulu, which starred Stanley Baker and Michael Caine. 716 Pte. Robert Jones was played by Denys Graham.

The Lord Ashcroft Gallery was full of prestigious medals and equally impressive stories of brave men and women. In addition, we should always remember the noble efforts of the thousands of ordinary soldiers, sailors and airmen who have fought, and in many cases, laid down their lives, in the numerous conflicts throughout the ages.

The Imperial War Museum, London
The Imperial War Museum, London

[Why Workday Wednesday? This phrase has been included in the title in order to take part in Blogging Prompts at Geneabloggers]

[Note: All content on the Hibbitt Family History website and blog is copyrighted. Click here for conditions of use.]

Site Updates - Fryer, Jones, Hopkins

Category: What's New at

Family Tree section
  • Added additional information and footnotes for Hannah Fryer, wife of Robert Jones, snr.
  • Also added the couple's children, including detailed information about their son, Robert Jones V.C., and added the name of his wife, Elizabeth Hopkins.
Gallery section
  • As the Medals and Militaria Album is expanding, I've taken it out of the Potpourri section of the gallery and placed it under it's own Medals and Militaria heading.
  • Also added photographs of Robert Jones' medals to the above section, as well as a photo of the Imperial War Museum where Robert's medals are on display.
Relevant place names: Tidenham in Gloucestershire, Penhros, Clytha, Llantilio Crossenny, Monmouth and Newport in Monmouthshire, and Dorstone and Peterchurch in Herefordshire.

[Note: All content on the Hibbitt Family History website and blog is copyrighted. Click here for conditions of use.]

Follow Friday: Addie Wells & children - Titanic Records at Ancestry

Category: Famous Connections

RMS TitanicA little while ago I discovered that my husband, Harvey, is distantly related to three survivors of the Titanic. To commemorate the 100th anniversary, Ancestry have released a range of records in relation to the disaster of 1912 .

Addie Dart Wells (nee Trevaskis), and her two young children, Joan and Ralph Wells, were travelling in 2nd class and managed to board life-boat number 14 before being picked up by the Carpathia. Among the records the family can be seen on the Titanic's Outward Passenger list, the Passengers Surviving/Missing list and the Carpathia's Passenger list.

Addie was the great-grand-daughter of Harvey's 3 x great-grandparents, John Barnes & Ann (nee Dawes) from Newlyn, Cornwall, near Penzance. Addie was also from Newlyn and would perhaps have known Harvey's predecessors, his direct line having lived in Newlyn right up to the millennium.

Another useful website about the Titanic is the Nova Scotia Archives. The Wells family appear on the document entitled, List of Second Class Passengers.

[Why Follow Friday? This phrase has been included in the title in order to take part in Blogging Prompts at Geneabloggers]

[Note: All content on the Hibbitt Family History website and blog is copyrighted. Click here for conditions of use.]

Travel Tuesday: Land's End and the First & Last House

Category: Grandpa's Old Slides

Land's End and the First & Last House
Click the image to see a larger version.

The previous slide which I posted from Grandpa's collection showed the most easterly point of the UK, Lowestoft. Now I'm posting a photo of the most westerly point on mainland England, Land's End in Cornwall. My gran, Ivy Alice Hibbitt (nee Dando), is sitting in the group of four in the foreground on the left of the photo. The First & Last House can be seen in the background. Nowadays, the area has been turned into a commercial enterprise but this photo was probably taken some time during the 1950's when it was much more open and accessible.

(From my grandpa's collection of old slides - see this post for more information.)

[Why Travel Tuesday? This phrase has been included in the title in order to take part in Daily Blogging Prompts at Geneabloggers]

Site Updates - Gallery photos: Medals & Militaria

Category: What's New at

Gallery section
  • Renamed the War Memorabilia photo album (under Potpourri) to Medals and Militaria.
  • Also added a few more photos to the above section, including the reverse of Henry James Weaver's and William Hellyer Geake's medals as well as the original envelope and box which Henry Weaver's medals were sent in. This is the first time I've noticed the ribbons on Henry's medals are mixed up. I can't swap them as the medals are in the possession of one of my brothers who doesn't live locally to me.
[Note: All content on the Hibbitt Family History website and blog is copyrighted. Click here for conditions of use.]

Too many distractions in family history

Category: What's New at

Regular followers will notice I haven't posted to my blog for a few weeks. This is partly because I've been busy with other things. However, I've still been engaged in certain family history pursuits.

Many of you will recognise the different facets that our hobby can consist of; researching online, visiting archives, visiting ancestral places and graveyards, scanning and archiving documents and photographs, etc.

I've recently been engaged in rummaging around in four old boxes which contain personal effects of my husband's grandfather, Air Cdre Cyril Norman Ellen D.F.C. Two boxes contain photographs and the others contain a variety of papers and objects. It's quite a distraction and there's lots there that I need to index and scan a major project in itself!

I will, however, try to get back on track with progressing my own family tree and hopefully you'll hear from me again shortly.