This is a work in progress and is shared EAOE.

The trees referred to here are not what you may think of as a tree. Normally in genealogy a tree may be a discrete group of people, linked to each other but not to those in another tree. Here a singe tree may contain more than one such group, it is what is referred to as a tree by the software I am using to display the trees.

Kent ‘Goathams’

Goathams and Gothams with ancestry in Kent back at least to the C16th are (or will be) on “Teresa’s tree”. (In England this group have ended up with the surname spelt Goatham, although often spelt Gotham in the past. However, I believe many, perhaps most, Gothams in the USA belong to this group, though as yet are not on this website).

Even if DNA shows a link to one or more other groups I don’t think we will ever have the information to link the trees.

Other ‘Gothams’

These are on “Gothams” tree. This may well include more than one unrelated group, and I’m sure I will not be able to link all the groups on this tree, but I don’t know which groups I will be able to link so it seemed best to put them in one tree.

Inclusion on the trees

I am interested in all of my ancestors, so “Teresa’s tree” includes many who have no place in a Goatham One-Name Study (ONS). The reason for including my One-Name Study as a section within my own family tree website is to share what I have found about the other ancestors we have in common with those who relate to this group. I have also done some research into all those who descend from my 2 x gt grandparents Charles and Sybilla Goatham, and a little research (far from complete) into those who descend from Charles’ parents, John and Elizabeth.

Inclusion on my own tree is not according to strict rules; my view is that this is a hobby and I include what I fancy. Generally I include few of those who are not blood relations, other than spouses of blood relations (and possibly other spouses and children of theirs).

I have decided, though, that is makes sense to generally include to the ‘second cousin’ level – this means those who were great grandchildren, great nephews and nieces 1st cousins once removed and 2nd cousins to my direct ancestors.

ONS Policy

As far as the One-Name Study goes I am generally including:

  1. those who have at any time in their lives had the surname Go(a)tham (or, in the past, variant spellings of these names) – these are the subjects of the study.
  2. the spouses, children, parents and siblings of those in category (1), including step-parents and step- and half-siblings.
  3. other relations mentioned in documents with those listed in (1) and sometimes (2) as well.

Those listed in categories 2 and 3 are generally being included, but I am not doing a great deal of research to discover these. They are being included for two reasons, both because they are the people who were probably amongst the most important in the lives of the subjects of this study, and also because especially before BMD registration and the start of censuses (with everyone named) (in 1837 and 1841 in England and Wales) documents e.g. wills of people in categories 2 and 3 will often refer to the subjects of the study.


I have put my ‘Gothams’ tree online before it is as tidy as I would wish, because I want to share it. Please be aware:

  • that it has a number of speculative links. I hope I have indicated all of these, plus my reasoning in notes somewhere on a page – but e.g. where I am guessing a father-son relationship it may not be on both pages;
  • even where a link does not appear speculative it may be wrong – many Gothams had the same few Christian names and lived in neighbouring parishes; it might seem reasonable to think that a ‘John’ married in Nnnn Parish was the only one baptised there in the previous 50 years, but there probably instances where he moved away and it was his cousin from across the border;
  • that many sources have not yet been added, or just a hint given.

Please fee free to contact me regarding a link – if you do not understand why I have a link, or my notes or wish to suggest an alternative.

Also, feel free to contact me for more information about the sources.

Some data is currently only from transcribed data; I aim to check out at least all of the English ‘PR’ (parish register) type data in the original documents or (mostly) images of those documents.


In England a married woman was nearly always known by her married name. Some PR entries, especially older ones, do not show if a woman was a spinster or a widow when she married. Whilst I realise in some cases the name I see  woman using at marriage will be that from a previous marriage – this may be the case where the name was Gotham or another – to simply show the name as unknown and bury the likely surname in notes seems unhelpful and so the woman’s surname at marriage is shown as her maiden name unless / until I have evidence to the contrary.

Similarly with census data, strictly speaking the relationship shown is only to the head of the household. Whilst it was clear this was not always filled in correctly, a more significant issue is that we can’t be sure (without other evidence) that sons and daughters of the ‘head’ were also children of his then wife. Again, I show them as such unless or until I have evidence that they had a different mother.

The above considerations are so common that I generally do not note the uncertainty, but leave it to the viewer to bear this in mind.


The Devon Gothams within the ‘Gothams’ tree are in a number of unlinked groupings; I hope to add a list here of ‘heads’ of each group soon.

I hope it will prove possible to link many of these groups after more research. However, there seem to have been enough Gothams in Devon in the C16th, and few sources from then or earlier that would show relationships, that I am fairly certain I will not be able to link them all, even though they may have been closely related.

In some instances too many people with the same Christian name may prevent the linking of later groupings.

There is also at the time of writing one London and 4 Shropshire / Stoke on Trent groups.

Last updated: 14 January, 2017

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.