The treasure trove – quite literally – down under….. Doing a surname study on an unusual surname, I have to confess to being a somewhat lazy searcher on occasion, especially when a website offers the ability to put in a search term and provides the results from all of the available databases. But, slightly concerning to me, is that when I search Trove – with over 376,741,026 Australian and online resources from books, images, historic newspapers and maps to music, archives and more– for the Sillifant surname, the Number 1 return in the ‘Journals, articles and data sets’ category is me! The thirtieth edition of Simply Sillifant? has just been published, marking ten years of production and distribution to Sillifant descendants around the world.
Aside from that little gem are archived websites as well as books by the children’s author, Alec Sillifant. However, the real treasures lie within the 1,541 reported results within ‘digitised newspapers and more’. Having just spent more hours than I had available trying to extract all the Sillifant (and variants) from the new Devon additions to Findmypast, I think I will need to add another couple of days into a week (ten sounds like a good number….. say five working and five for the weekend?) to find time to trawl through this wonderful archive. Though, a quick perusal of the top few pages brings a wonderful newspaper article in The Advertiser (Adelaide) in May 1946 regarding John Sillifant, a descendant of the Sillifant family of Coombe House:
[Note to self: set aside a week in August to go through the Sillifant references on Trove. Let’s be honest, the summer is probably going to be wet and cold. What better way to spend August!? Oh yes…. writing a book! Oops!]