Thursday 5 November 2015

Search tip for the 1939 National Register

For those venturing into the England and Wales 1939 National Register, which was released on Monday (see blogpost), here's a handy free tip that might help you to assemble details of a household and/or street.

Preview page: TNA reference is circled in red
From the dedicated 1939 Register search page, perform a normal name search. Select your entry of interest from the results page and click for the Preview. On the Preview page, you'll be given further information about the household, the number of people in it whose details would be provided by a paid search, and the number of people in the household whose details are officially closed ie 'locked'.

Beneath these details is the 4-part TNA reference.

1. Ignore the RG number
2. Keep the next number and letter
3. Keep the next number
4. Ignore the last number

Now go back to the Register search page and select the Advanced Search option. On the Advanced Search page, scroll down to the last fields. Enter the second segment of the TNA reference as the Piece number. Enter the third segment as the Item number.

From the results page you will now be able to view the names and years of birth of the neighbours and all family members whose records are open.What you'll miss by choosing this search method is the occupation of the individuals and their address. This may or may not be important to your research.

Thanks to Liverpool Col for the tip!

UPDATE – 8 November: FindMyPast has removed the TNA reference from the Search Preview page. It is not, therefore, possible to use the above method of searching any more. However, Liverpool Col has found a way around this...

When you're on the Search Preview page, let your cursor hover over the big blue 'Unlock this household' button (see below). Check the bottom left of your browser window and you should see an url ie.

I've highlighted in red the part of the TNA reference you need. The number with the letter is the Piece number. The next number is the Item number. Insert these numbers into the TNA reference fields of the Advanced search.