Saturday, January 21

English Soldiers of the 14th and 15th Centuries

Sure, anyone can search back in time a hundred years or so. But how often do you get the chance to search family history dating to the 1300's?

A wonderful online genealogy resource, The Soldier in Later Medieval England, lets you do exactly that. The system, covering the years 1369-1453, currently has almost 250,000 records in three distinct databases: historic muster rolls, garrison database, and something known as the protection database. The whole thing is supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) in the UK.

The records, from the UK National Archives, include military campaigns and duties like the King's Remembrancer Expedition to Brittany in 1375, or the Standing Force of the King's Bodyguard, in 1398. You remember those....right?

Searching here is easy, by first or last name, or with other parameters such as year, military rank, commanding officer, and so on. Just remember that things weren't spelled quite the same way back then as we might expect today, so be creative. Still, if your family has any roots in England, and perhaps a knight or two in the woodwork, this is a database to have fun with.


Don't forget to also check for your family history at NewspaperArchive and These are subscription databases, but they are among the most powerful research tools available for looking into family roots. And visit the main page of Free Genealogy Tools for more, umm, free genealogical tools.

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