If you’re trying to find royal or noble connections in your family tree, check out our handy hints below:
1. Explore surnames: cross-reference surnames in your family tree with those found in Burke’s Commoners and Landed Gentry of Great Britain and Ireland as this group, mostly descended from royalty or the aristocracy, is when the number of high-born commoners first tended to reach a critical mass.
2. Seek out wealth: look for evidence of wealthy ancestors through domestic staff listings on census records, property and businesses documented in wills and probate records and ancestors who were extensive travellers listed in immigration records travelling in First Class.
3. Investigate titles: if any of your ancestors had titles, explore the age and origins of those titles.
4. Look for places: for surnames in your family tree that are also the name of a place – for example a town or parish – do further research to establish any connection between that ancestor and significant ownership in that location.
5. Find the Normans: investigate whether any of the surnames in your family tree has Norman origins and if so, research that particular branch of the family as far back as you can as many early Normans had direct royal connections.