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Five Cousins - Tony, Roger, Nigel, Marilyn and Bill ... and their mothers, Betty, Winnie and Audrey at Sheerness beach, 1954

Welcome to my web site for the Vousden One-Name Study and incorporating my wider family history research. This web site is hosted by the Guild of One-Name Studies in order to provide a safe haven for members’ one-name studies, and make them available to public view indefinitely as long as it is able.

I was born and brought up in Cradley in the Black Country in England, my mother's family homeland since at least the 17th century. My father was a Londoner who came to Cradley on his return from the War in 1946. For most of my life the only Vousden I knew was my grandma, Agnes Minnie Lucy Brown née Vousden who had married Robert John Brown. In 1997 I started looking into why she had told us, when we were children, that we were descended from Dick Turpin. I soon discovered that her mother's maiden name was Agnes Turpin, but I found no connection with the highwayman other than the surname.

I had other reasons to research my family history, namely various postcards, diaries and papers that my parents had given me over the years. Who was "Maria" in Chicago in 1909 who wrote to her cousin my great grandad back in Cradley "Old England"? Why did my grandma Pearce take my mother, as a one year old child, on a train from Cradley to Ulverston in 1922? What could I find out about Daniel Vousden who enlisted into the 9th Regiment of Lancers in 1852? How did my father survive as a Prisoner of War in the Far East from 1942 to 1945 and then come home and meet my mother-to-be, under the clock at New Street station in Birmingham? And why was one of my father's three POW diaries missing? (It turned up 75 years after it went missing - see Daniel Brown's page to find out how.)

I answered most of these questions in just a few months - Maria took a little longer to track down - but by then I was also trying to decide which of the seemingly countless William Vousdens, perhaps born in Kent, was my 3 x great grandfather. I joined the Guild of One-Name Studies, embarked upon the Vousden One-Name Study, and proceeded to work it out. And now, in 2020 I continue to research my dead relatives. Will it ever end?

I started my research in 1997 and almost from the beginning I used The Master Genealogist (TMG) by Wholly Genes for recording my research. Then, in 2015 the principal of the company fell too ill to continue and announced that TMG would no longer be developed. I set about looking for an alternative and trialled the three programs that seemed to lead the field, from which I chose Family Historian (FH) by Calico Pie. I have had no regrets about this decision and hope FH lasts a very long time.

I would be very happy to hear from you, your questions about the Vousdens especially but also about any of my family history (see Contact page).

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