Improve your experience. We are very sorry but this website does not support Internet Explorer. We recommend using a different browser that is supported such as Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.

Researching 17th Century Ancestors


The Society of Genealogists is proud to present a course aimed at taking your research back in to the 1600s. Away from the pressures of life for a weekend, you can focus on how to find your earlier ancestors and flesh out your family’s history. You will spend time with other people in the class that share your interests and are as keen as you are to learn new skills. Most of us enjoy meeting and learning from expert genealogists and we find others’ ancestry almost as fascinating as our own.

What will the course cover?

  • The Commonwealth Gap
  • Civil Wars
  • Migration to the Americas
  • Parish Registers and Records
  • Heraldic Visitations
  • Grammar Schools and Universities
  • London Guilds and Livery Companies
  • Taxation
  • Old Poor Law
  • Sources for English Civil War soldiers
  • Court records and Quarter Sessions
  • Nonconformity
  • 17th Century Probate

Using case studies, document workshops and small group discussions alongside lectures you will learn about England in the 17th Century the sources available to research your ancestors in this period, and what their life would have been like. On Saturday afternoon Guest Speaker Tim Healey presents "Sex, Drink and Death in the 17th Century" a romp through the pleasures and perils of life in this turbulent era, featuring bawdy frolics, alehouse revels, highway robberies, Civil War, fire and plague. Hugely entertaining, the talk also gives insight into evolving customs - of courtship, celebration, faith and burial.

Time and dates

From 10:30am to 5 pm on Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th September on Zoom. All sessions will be recorded and available to those who have pre-booked for a period of 2 weeks.  

Can't make this time? Book anyway as this talk will be recorded and available to watch for 2 weeks. 


Full cost £90.00, but as a membership benefit, SoG members pay £72.00. Course bookings accepted until 9am 16 September. To find out more about  membership benefits, visit our membership page.

New to Zoom and would like to attend an online talk but not sure how? Do contact us if you would like to arrange a free taster session.

Else ChurchillAbout your tutor:

Else Churchill is the Genealogist at the Society Genealogists in London and a has over 30 years of experience as a genealogist.

Formerly a professional genealogical librarian and researcher, Else has worked for the SoG since 1994. She is the Society’s subject lead, working across the organisation and runs the publishing programme.



Tim HealeyGuest speaker: Tim Healey is a freelance writer and broadcaster who has presented many programmes on BBC Radio 3 and Radio 4. He also directs the 17th-century costume band, The Oxford Waits with whom he performs in period attire see .

 New to Zoom and would like to attend the course but not sure how it works? Do contact us if you would like to arrange a free taster session.


Press enter to see more results