Researching your ancestors in India: where to start? The first post revisited

February 27, 2015. The first informative post on the Anglo-Indian Project. The very first post in August 2014 was also informative – it sprung me into action, after years of saying I would explore my ancestral roots in India – but, in February 2015 the project really sparked into life.


Original post (February 27, 2015): Researching your ancestors in India: where to start?


Reflecting on this first post almost 18 months later, it is apparent that the post was in itself reflective. Mostly reflecting on my tardiness with getting into gear with the project earlier – something I wish I had started many years earlier. Having moved to London, UK, the opportunity presented itself to meet some incredible people and organisations (such as the Families in British India Society (FIBIS)) and explore the India Office Records at the British Library.

The post in early 2015 was also reflective on the inspiration for the AIP, Nana, Elaine Cynthia Wheeler (nee Hassett), who sadly died before I was born:

Those who did meet her, describe her as ‘one in a million’, ‘too good to be true’, ‘everybody was always welcome in her home – the door was never locked’, ‘she LOVED children’. That does not do full justice to the great woman I am sure she was. Her memory lives on through three generations: Elaine’s five children, their thirteen children, and the fourteen children (so far) of the thirteen children(!) [There are now fifteen great grandchildren.]

The post ended with the line:

What happened next was incredible.

This was with regard to the wealth of information discovered on the first day in the British Library in early 2015 (covered in the post which followed). Since then, there has been a mass of information uncovered, including:

  • 7 generations
  • Portuguese and Anglo-Indian ancestors
  • A variety of family names: Wheeler, Hassett, Wharton, Pereira, De Silva, Lee, Smith

There are many more fascinating findings. Many can be found in the ‘Quick Facts‘ post (although there have been many advances since then) and the many project review posts – the latest one in June 2016.

It’s interesting to look back on the first post and think about the adventure so far, to assist the direction of the AIP. There are many aspects of the project yet to be published and of course the visit to Bombay (Mumbai) is sure to raise new fascinating insight.


AIP_with web address2

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7 thoughts on “Researching your ancestors in India: where to start? The first post revisited

  1. Dan, it is great to see how far your research and journey has come in such a short space of time. I am sure there are many more paths to be followed and I look forward to reading about them.

    Liked by 1 person

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