Yes, it’s been a really long time! I had our third child, Alfred, in February 2015. He was rather unwell when he was born but is now a wonderful, strong and healthy little boy of 13 months. I have also … Continue reading
Genealogy is a funny game – sometimes, nothing for ages then a stream of breakthroughs all at once!
Earlier today I was delving into some records and found a branch of the family with sons serving in WWI. Until now, I hadn’t found any ancestors of the right age to be involved. So I am sure there is more digging to be done there to uncover their war stories. One individual, in fact, sadly died in the War in April 1918.
This afternoon I was googling George Campion Postans (as one does!) and found a link to him in a family tree on Ancestry. I am beside myself with how much information is in this family tree which the owner has kindly allowed me access to (the owner is a distant cousin!). It includes some wonderful sources which I will be spending some time examining.
A very good day for the family tree, all in all! Don’t know how I shall sleep for the excitement though!
Yesterday’s blog post profiled my great-grandfather, Frederick George Postans (1839-1922). He lived and worked in Newmarket, Suffolk, for the greater part of his life. He worked as postmaster and lived in the Post Office located in Newmarket High Street. I was musing yesterday whether the existing Post Office was the same one – a Google search (God bless Google!) has revealed the answer.
The Website ‘Newmarket Shops’ has the following information:
The Post Office
- Newmarket’s Post Office was originally across the road at No.122 High Street – now Thing-Me-Bobs, but this was the site of the 5th bomb that struck Newmarket during WWII on February 18th 1941 – the building was destroyed and two people lost their lives there.As a temporary measure the Post Office was transferred to the Memorial Hall – No.144 High Street, where it remained until 1951, when Willoughby House along with Frank Griggs’ house next door were demolished to make way for the present building.
(Found at http://www.newmarketshops.info/No.103_High_Street.html accessed 9th February 2014)
So, sadly, the original Post Office where Frederick spent virtually all his working life has disappeared. I will continue to try and find out more about the original Post Office and see if I can locate any images. I’ve put out a request on a Newmarket Facebook page so I hope that will bear fruit!
During the course of researching about the Post Office I have also turned up a fascinating account of the destruction of Newmarket High Street on 18th February 1941 during WWII. This is a very interesting side-alley in my research (which genealogy seems to regularly throw up!) and worth perusing although not directly relevant to my family. Sadly a Post Office worker was killed during the raid at his work.
Edit: The Facebook page ‘Old Newmarket’ has kindly linked to a photo in its archive of the old Post Office for me – it was rather thrilling opening this up for the first time and seeing the place where my Great-Grandfather lived and worked in the 1870s-90s. The image was provided by the Newmarket Local History Society and I am linking to it here so that you can click through and see it too! Wow. The power of the internet!
I mentioned in an earlier post that Dad had shown me a number of family photos in his possession which his sister Jennifer had given to him earlier. The photos were framed and large – unfortunately we can’t say with … Continue reading
The name Postans…. doesn’t seem *very* English, therefore I think we’ve always wondered exactly where it came from. Dad always thought it had French origins to do with a Postern gate and it seems he was right:
Recorded as Postan, Postance, Poston, Postin, and several others, this is an English surname although one of French origins. It is either topographical or occupational. However spelt the surname describes a dweller by a Postern gate, or more likely the keeper of the gate. It derives from the pre 10th century Old French word “posterle”, and originally described a rear entrance, but in later times was taken to mean the small gate at the side of a portcullis which admitted one person at a time. The word was introduced into the English language after the Norman Conquest of 1066, and the surname followed shortly after, probably as a result of the thousand fortresses that the Normans built to keep their unruly country under control.