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  #1  
Old 19-09-12, 07:55
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Default Who Do You Think You Are - Alex Kingston 19th Sep

This evening at 9 pm on BBC1. Actress best known for playing Dr Elizabeth Corday in ER, River Song in Dr Who, and Moll Flanders.
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Family History News updated 29th Feb
Findmypast 1871 census update
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Old 19-09-12, 13:10
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i am looking forward to this one my only worry is that in the review of it it mentions WWI again and I think I have had enough and would like a bit more FH backwards like the Annie Lennox one and the old format they used to have.
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Old 19-09-12, 13:27
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I read that they were doing a bit more WW1 stuff, too, but I that the focus will be on the widow left behind. They are also looking into family stories about a Jewish heritage.
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Old 19-09-12, 14:01
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Ah - I've read some more previews about the show and it sounds as if it will be a good episode. Not all all like the Hugh Dennis and Patrick Stewart ones.
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Old 19-09-12, 14:36
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Looking forward it too - so please don't let them dwell on just one bit - in one of the Wars I reckon she's always good at whatever part she plays
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Old 19-09-12, 17:14
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I remember her as Moll Flanders in the Fortunes and Misfortunes of Moll Flanders film.
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Old 19-09-12, 17:18
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Sounds like it might be art imitating life from some of the other stuff I've read!
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Old 19-09-12, 21:05
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Great! What a woman Elizabeth was - so I wonder what happened to all that property? I expect someone will be able to find out Let alone what they'd be worth on the market these days

Her gtgrandad was very old to be a volunteers in WW1!
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Old 19-09-12, 21:06
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Episode Synopsis

Alex Kingston lives in Los Angeles with her daughter. Her parents Tony and Margarethe, who is German, and Nicola, one of Alex's two younger sisters, live in Surrey.

Tony's mother Mitty (real name Helen) died in 2008. Her father was William Henry Keevil, a photographer, who died in WW1. His widow didn't remarry after his death but lived with Tony's parents.



William and his wife had a son Bernard, and Alex's uncle, Tony's brother, is also called Bernard. He lives in Kent and showed Alex a copy of William's medal index card, which shows that he was a sapper in the Royal Engineers. He also showed her William's death certificate showing that he died of wounds in Belgium on the 7th Aug 1917.

William's children were aged 16, 10 and 4 when he died, and the family lived in Wandsworth. A researcher showed a copy of William's birth certificate to Alex. He was born on the 7th Nov 1875, parents Walter Keevil, a lawyer's clerk, and Ellen nee Law.

Alex looked at the 1891 census entry showing William as a lantern slide maker age 15, a and the 1911 census showing him as a magic lantern slide manufacturer on his own account. The 1912 birth certificate for Mitty shows William's occupation as photographer.

1891 census entry for the Keevil family on Findmypast

1881 census entry for the Keevil family on Findmypast

1901 census entry for William H Keevil and family on Findmypast

1911 census entry for William H Keevil and family on Findmypast

Alex visited the National Media Museum in Bradford to meet a photographic historian and learn about magic lantern slides and studio photographers.

She then visited the Royal Engineers' HQ in Kent to meet a military historian. William's service papers were among those destroyed in WW2, but the medal index card shows that he joined the army in Feb 1915 and was in the 3rd London Field Company and his death certificate shows that he was in the 5th Field Survey Company when he died. This unit used "sound ranging" photographic equipment. A book about the Sound Rangers, and the unit's War Diary, both mentioned the death of Sapper Keevil.



Alex then visited the Jewish Museum in London to meet a researcher who had traced the family tree back from Mitty's mother Helen Sophia Morey. Her mother was Sophie Braham. Sophie's parents were Michael Braham who died in 1827, and his wife Elizabeth. She had two sisters, Frances and Eve, and a brother Lewis. Elizabeth was widowed in 1827 with four children under 10. The marriage certificate from Eve's wedding to Lawrence Emmanuel, a rag merchant, the son of Uzziel Emmanuel, also a rag merchant, shows that they had a Jewish wedding, so it appears that the Braham family were Jewish.

The researcher found a newspaper report about Lewis Braham which said that he had borrowed £40 and not paid it back.



The 1851 census shows Elizabeth at 9 Shepherd Street, Hanover Square, Westminster. She is the head of household, occupation lodging house keeper,with her daughter Sophia and two grandchildren.

link to 1851 census entry on Findmypast

Most of the houses on that street (now renamed Dering Street) were lodging houses with female heads of household, and it seems that they were "houses of ill repute". The researcher found newspaper reports about a suspicious death in 1852 at 9 Shepherd Street, which is described as aa "house of ill fame". The man who died was James Fain age 19.

Alex visited Westminster Abbey to look at the records of the inquest, which was held on the 15th Nov 1852. One of the witnesses was a Mary Ann Dalton, known as "Polka Poll". The inquest verdict was that James Fain killed himself by poison while insane.

Elizabeth had been charged with keeping a house of ill fame in 1827, the Sidney Hotel, Leicester Street, Leicester Fields. Alex read a copy of the indictment which showed that Elizabeth pled not guilty but was found guilty. There was no record of her sentence or fine.

Alex then met another historian who showed her the 1861 census entry where Elizabeth was living in Northumberland Street in Marylebone, occupation freeholder, with her granddaughter Rosa Matilda, Lewis's daughter.
1861 census entry on findmypast

The 1871 census showed Elizabeth at 8 Titchfield Terrace, St Johns Wood, with Lewis, a financial agent, and Rosa age 20.
1871 census entry on findmypast

Elizabeth died at the age of 84 and Alex looked at her will. She left her household furnishings etc to Lewis, her jewellery to Rosa, and also her freehold houses nos 1 and 4 Wade Street, Poplar, to Rosa. She also owned numbers 52, 54, 56 and 58 Cochrane St, St Johns Wood, and 8 Titchfield Terrace, but they didn't read out the part of the will stating what happened to those houses.
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Family History News updated 29th Feb
Findmypast 1871 census update

Last edited by kiterunner; 20-09-12 at 07:11. Reason: add census links
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  #10  
Old 19-09-12, 21:26
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Loved it. An entertaining episode. Would have liked to have see her tell her dad about the Jewish roots - and all about Elizabeth. A minor gripe, though.
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