Hi WikiTreers,

Welcome to a new installment of “Meet our Members.” It’s time to get to know another awesome member of our community: Meet Amy.

Amy Utting became a WikiTreer in May of 2016.  She works diligently to add sources to profiles she manages, and participates in several projects including Irish Roots and the New Zealand Project. Amy recently became one of our newest Mentors.

What are some of the surnames you are researching?

Until I have access to the family records I need, I’m avoiding the /UTTING/ side of my family for now, as the furthest ancestor I’ve reached is just a complete source of confusion. I’m currently focusing my attention mostly on the /JERMYN/ family from Suffolk.

(Editor’s Note: Amy has a  list of many of the surnames she is researching on her profile as well as links to her extensive lists of  her notable relations and WikiTree cousins!) 

What are some of the locations you are researching?

I have family on both sides of the Irish Sea, so I’m looking equally into both sides. Cork and Dublin are the predominant areas of Ireland I’m researching, while Suffolk and Norfolk both crop up quite a bit in my research also. 

When and how did you get interested in genealogy and family history?

Because of my love of history, I was already intrigued by family stories for many years before I actually began actively researching my family tree. My grandfather passed away in 2014, and because my grandmother had been moved to a different care facility to the one he was in, a lot of her belongings had been left with him, so when he passed the family came together to sort through his things and figure out where it was all going to go. I was the one who got to keep a lot of the books, including a copy of the Kilgour Family Book (published by my second cousin, and fellow WikiTree member Kathryn Mooney). I vaguely remember reading through it, cover to cover, in a single afternoon and I was still highly intrigued after I finished. It all set off from there!

Who’s your favorite ancestor and why?

This will sound ridiculously sappy, but my great-grandfather, Leonard Utting, was probably my favourite. Charlie (a nickname from his middle name, Charles) was born in Norfolk and served in the British Army during World War I before he emigrated to Wellington, New Zealand, and married his first wife. While he served in the New Zealand Expeditionary Forces during World War II, his wife began an affair with the local storeman, which Charlie discovered upon his return. It was after this event (and subsequent divorce) that Charlie met my great-grandmother, Winifred Taylor, and they lived happily in the years following. I think it’s a lovely story, where my grandfather overcame relationship obstacles and two literal wars and still lived to just over eighty.

Tell us about a brick wall you were able to break down or one you hope to bust through.

It would be nice to go further back in the /UTTING/ side of the family, especially as it’s my actual surname. At some point soon I’ll be travelling further north from where I live to meet with my great-aunt and hopefully gain access to all of the research that she’s done, so I have hopes that I’ll be able to break through this particular brick wall soon!

How long have you been on WikiTree and what do you spend the most time doing?

I first joined WikiTree in May 2016, though I only dabbled for the first few months until I really figured out what I was doing. I currently spend most of my time hunting down further sources for the information I have on WikiTree.

What brought you to WikiTree? (In other words, how did you find us?)

I had made a Prezi powerpoint about one of my ancestors (William Kilgour) for a school project, and as Prezi is public, someone found it and commented that the author of my source (the Kilgour Family Book) was a member of a website called WikiTree, and that the website could possibly help me connect more of my family to me.  

What is your favorite thing about WikiTree, or which feature(s) do you like the most?

The relationship finder, definitely. I have a well-documented love for history, and it’s absolutely fascinating to see which notable people of history I’m related to.

If you could improve one thing about WikiTree, what would it be?

I can’t think of anything I’d want to improve! I think it comes down to the fact that, when something runs well, you generally don’t think of things to improve until they either break, or someone improves them first.

What is an example of how WikiTree has helped you with your genealogy or how you’ve helped genealogy with WikiTree?

I’m always thrilled when people point out duplicates of family members or of other profiles I manage, because it’s a lovely feeling when you collaborate with others around you and you’re able to make sure that your information is as correct as it possibly can be.

Any tips for someone just starting out on WikiTree?

Try not to grow too confused! It’s honestly pretty easy to get lost when you first start out, especially when it comes to sources, so it’s important to take your time and verify your information, and sort of map it all out in your head before confusing yourself.

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  5 Responses to “Meet our Members: Amy Utting”

  1. Interesting, we look to be about 6th cousins (16 degrees from separation). Touch base if you’d like to swap info on our common ancestors Murdock & McWhinnie.

  2. We are 22nd cousins with a common great-grandmother in Katherine (Norwich) de la Pole. I grew up knowing of my Scottish background but DNA testing showed a surprising 31% Irish background and a 28% Scandinavian connection, so establishing my family tree has become my retirement project. I loved your comment about your OCD and laughed out loud. I sometimes find myself going down rabbit holes for hours “cleaning” up entries on this site and the Family search site and often don’t accomplish my established goals for the day as a result of my OCD.

    • Hello, cousin! DNA often surprises us, haha. I’m yet to take a test, but I’m saving for one at the moment so we’ll see what surprises I can find.
      I’m glad I made you laugh! I try to twist my OCD into helping my tasks (perfectionism is a good trait for family research), but I too often get stuck down that rabbit hole! The amount of FS merges I make daily makes me weep.

  3. I just want to say hello. and thank you for your hard work inclearing up the tree! Welcome! Teri (Norman 4970)

  4. Wow! I have been researching my family for 52 years and have over 35,000 members in it. I have gotten some luck with the Irish but, very little. Most of my tree is from my Paternal French Grandmother and, Maternal Manning line. Since I’m 67% Irish (my sister was 77% Irish) I’d like to find ways, sites to go back on my Irish and Scottish lines.

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