So That's Where I Get It From

April 18, 2010


Filed under: BRICK WALLS!!!!!, COZENS READ, Cozens Read, EUREKA MOMENTS!! — Tags: , — rootsresearcher @ 5:43 pm

I suppose this has to be the main, worst Brick Wall that I have come across so far.

I mentioned in a previous post that it took me just short of ten years and a search of 300 or so Parish Registers and other documents before I found Cozens READ’s baptism and which then gave me his parents.  I already had an idea of who his parents might be, by going through a very long process of elimination (and through my various databases I have made to find who is who and where they are and so on).  I also mentioned that when at last finding Cozens READ’s baptism it threw up another little problem, just a little one, as he was called the daughter of William READ.  Daughter!!

I can remember the moment exactly when I found the baptism.  I was thrilled, delighted, excited, ooh there are just not words enough to explain it.

I had had what they called a small stroke a few months before this “find” and luckily it left me with no problems apart from a complete lack of motivation, which was just not me.  For quite a while I did not do any family history at all, just not motivated because of the small stroke.  I got a bit fed up with being like this, so decided to do something about it.  Although not motivated at all into doing any of my family history research, I decided that I was going to buy some microfiche and push myself into the search for the baptism of Cozens READ.  I hadn’t done all those years research for it to just give up looking because I wasn’t motivated!!

I bought about about ten microfiche from the Oxfordshire Family History Society and proceeded to work my way through them (I was working my way through all the parish churches in Oxfordshire to find the baptism).  I had to do this in the evenings to read from the microfiche reader better when the room was in near darkness.  I had worked my way through the fiche over several evenings and there I was, sat in the dark kitchen at the ironing board (just the right height for placing the microfiche reader on and with room for my notebooks etc)., and was on the very last of the ten or so microfiche I had bought.

I have no idea why, but as I put the first fiche into the reader I just felt that this could be good!  I had been through so many fiche and CDs and actual Parish Registers and never had a feeling like that although I always hoped I would come across the baptism I really wanted.

The first READs appeared in the very early 1600s (I note all those I come across wherever they are) so I noted those. Suddenly there was a baptism for a female READ in 1703 (I can’t remember the correct order as I write this) but when I saw the name Elizabeth I knew it was looking promising. From my process of elimination I had found a marriage of a William READ to an Elizabeth COSENS in 1703 but in a different place.  So this baptism wasn’t at the wrong time!!  Next came a baptism for Mary READ and because I had found a  Mary READ mentioned as the sister of Cozens READ on the huge ROSE Family tree book (details elsewhere on the blog later) this baptism also looked good.  I think it was 1704 0r 1705.  I thought to myself that if the next READ was Rachel then I knew I had the right family (because it was the Discharge of Legacy document I found in the huge ROSE Family Tree book (again details elsewhere on the blog later) for Rachel READ which enabled me to get her Will and then find Cozens READ’s other siblings), so I was getting just a tad excited!!

Well, it wasn’t Rachel READ that was next in the register, it was Coessens READ the daughter of William!!!  That’s when I got so excited, it was a real Eureka Moment, it was delightful and if I had been fitter than I am, my head would have been hitting the ceiling as I would have been bouncing about all over the place with excitement!  And, it certainly didn’t worry me at all that this entry said “Daughter”.

As mentioned in another post, I did search for the burial of this daughter and another baptism for a son, but there is none.  I put the error down to the Clerk not taking as much care as he should have done writing the entries, but then he knew no-one was really going to see anything he wrote.  He certainly did not think about those of us a few hundred years later looking at the Registers!  So this was the baptism of Cozens READ my 6 x great grandfather and the Brick Wall broken through after an almost ten year search.  Pheeewwww!

And, I got my motivation back!!  😉



  1. Wh would a man be written as a daughter?
    And how often are you able to buy microfiche? I almost bought a microfiche reader, but I own none and wondered if I would have use for one in my home.
    Just this weekend I was kind of hit by something I found. I was searching for a particular family so I had to examine a few people and the family at Ancestry and there it said who the persons parents were. I looked at the name and it said age five. So I lookd at the daughter and it said, Mother. At age five. I realize that the daughter could be named after the mother, but what was the census taker thinking?

    I am glad to meet you a devoted genealogist. I am glad you got your ” grove” back.

    Comment by jo — April 26, 2010 @ 11:34 am

    • Hallo again Jo,

      Having done so very much research into my 6 x great grandfather Cozens Read I am almost 100% sure that calling him the daughter of William Read was in fact a mistake by the clerk as he was writing the details in the Parish Register. He made another mistake just under Cozens Read’s baptism.

      I rechecked Registers and other Registers I had not checked before to look for a burial for the daughter that might have been, but just never found anything like that. I also rechecked Registers and others I had not checked before for another baptism for Cozens Read the son but just have never found that either. I am working my way through all the Parish Registers for about three UK counties to collect all Reads I come across, but as yet, there certainly does not seem to be a daughter Cozens Read anywhere.

      I would not be without my microfiche reader! Even though it is now very old, I love it!! I buy my microfiche from Family History Societies for the UK counties I am interested in. They transcribe the Parish Registers and other things, put them on microfiche, although now more are putting the information on CDs, and then I buy the microfiche as they become available, or several at a time. Here in the UK they are not at all expensive and some of mine I have had now for many years, but they continually get looked at as I come across more discoveries and more surnames to add to the family, so I go back over them to check again.

      My family very kindly ask me for a Wish List every Christmas and so I give them details of microfiche, Wills, CDs and all sorts of things I would like and so they decide amongst themselves who will get what for me, and I have wonderful gifts, exactly what I want! And the best thing is that once looked at, they are dipped into again many times over the years as I find more information, so are very useful presents and a real joy to me.

      With regard to the mother aged five in the Census. This could be an error. I have seen various marks over some of the details and ages then aren’t always so clear. I have also seen Married or Wife etc., in the wrong place so it might just be an error. It could be there were a mother and daughter of the same name and the census taker forgot to put one of them in but combined their details! I note these things as they appear, but will always check them out with other records because the census taker is only human, might be tired after a very long day and just wrote something incorrectly!!

      I’m very pleased to meet you too and now that we have met, please do keep in touch.

      Kind regards,

      Christine (rootsresearcher)

      Comment by rootsresearcher — April 26, 2010 @ 12:52 pm

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