Stephen Hawking passed away this week; can you help us connect him to the tree?

+14 votes
Renowned physicist, Stephen Hawking, passed away earlier this week. He is not yet connected to the global tree. I've been working on his first wife's family. If you're skilled in UK research, I'd love to have some help getting him connected. Geni has some lines that go back his Hawking side to the Bourchiers, but no sources, and as far as they go back, I didn't want to tread there without some verification. I am working on his wife's side, the Eagletons, right now. Jump in! Let's see how far we can get.
WikiTree profile: Stephen Hawking
asked in Genealogy Help by Abby Glann G2G6 Pilot (363k points)
Can someone connect Hawking's parents on FindAGrave? The profile is managed directly and my edits keep getting declined because the profile is "already up to date". I doubt he was an orphan. Also, I see that someone has applied to have his year of death changed to 1985!
Aaron, Connecting him on FAG would be a request for that site. There are some on here who work on both sites but not everyone on WikiTree even likes FAG as a source.
I know, bur it's just so frustrating to find out that they don't seem to think that those are his parents.
I hate to hear that the sources are missing on Geni. I will see if I can get it sourced.
I have checked it on Geni and the hawking connection on Geni is added by his sister so I guess she did had the sources and they are added while Stephen was alive so I guess if they are wrong her brother did say something about is. Sometimes it is better to connect someone while alive. Then you can ask if it correct or not. Because you need sometimes info from the living members of the family. In this case the proof is because grandmother said so :)

I see no point in redoing work if someone is already connected to the global tree. But if the connection is wrong on Geni, please tell and I will correct is. The fact that is not proven, does not may that is wrong. It is only a quick path you can use to find proof.

7 Answers

+6 votes
I'd love to know what is meant by the global tree. How can you be connected or not connected to it?
answered by Martin Allen G2G6 Pilot (244k points)
You add in your family tree until eventually you get back to an ancestor or a relative or even the spouse of a relative who is ALREADY on the tree.

Basically if you look down at the bottom of  every profile you should see a box that says NAME of person is X degeees from Oscar Wilde, and X degrees from Queen Elizabeth 2nd. Then it goes on to ask you to look for your connections or relationship to that person.

If this box is on the profile then that person is CONNECTED to the global tree. If there is NO SUCH BOX, then that person is not connected to the  global tree.

Stephen Hawking is currently NOT connected.
I should also add that connections get updated once every day - usually overnight eastern time. So when you link someone to a person who has the box at the bottom of their profile, then you have to wait until the next day (usually) for the box to show up on the new profiles that you have just added.
That doesn't make me any the wiser I'm afraid. What does already on the tree mean? Hawking profile was created in 2014. So do we mean connected to those that were on the tree then or now?

If i enter someone and connect them to someone already on WT that doesn't guarantee anything, does it?

I've wondered all this before, but this seemed a good opportunity to ask.
There is a set of profiles that are all connected to each other by parentage or marriage. The largest such set is the global tree and includes HRH Queen Elizabeth. If at the very bottom of a profile it says first name is n degrees from... then that profile is connected to the global tree and by some route or other to every other profile in the global tree.

Tim (still in splendid isolation)
When any profile has just been created, it is NOT automatically connected to the tree until the family is eventually linked to someone who already has the box on their profile.

Sometimes this takes a short time to make this link, or only a few extra profiles, and other times it can take years - such as for Stephen Hawking - or LOTS of new profiles to make that connection.

Also because Stephen Hawking was still alive in 2014, there was no rush to "connect" him for privacy reasons. Now that he has passed on, there is a rush to get him connected.

Remember all of these profiles are public and anyone around the world can see these so we have to be somewhat careful of private information - especially for those who are still living.

As an example of a notable whom I still have NOT been able to connect to the global tree, you might want to look at Richard Carpenter.

Richard's profile was created in 2016, but his sister Karen's profile was created in 2015. Neither of them have been connected to the global tree yet, despite all the ancestors who have been added. Because I still cannot find any relative who is already connected!!!  This is called an "island."  That is just one example.

Also on the sense of where the global tree is - this global tree is on the Wikitree servers only. Ancestry and Geni and World Connect all have their own global trees. NOT connected to Wikitree at all.

Wikitree claims to be unique because it ensures that everyone has sources (or tries to anyway) whereas a significant number of people on the other trees do not have sources. Those trees do not have any serious oversight and management whereas Wikitree does.

I hope this helps.
If you enter someone and connect them to someone who is already on wikitree, you better have sources and evidence that proves that connection!! LOL

So yes, if the sources are there, then the connection can be guaranteed. This is what makes Wikitree unique and different from all the other "global" trees.
+8 votes
I have just tidied up (formatted) the GRO details that were already listed. It looks better now instead of being all over the place.
answered by Robynne Lozier G2G6 Pilot (431k points)
+10 votes
I think I FOUND a connection!!

Anne Groves Atkinson

and her daughter - Mary Lund Atkinson - Stephens grandmother

 and I think this fellow Henry Atkinson Lund MAY be related somehow - and he is already on wikitree!!

I just havent worked out HOW they are connected yet!!

But Henry is listed as a nephew to William Atkinson in the 1861 census

And William Atkinson may be the father of the other William Atkinson who is on wikitree - going by the dates - see below

I know this is confusing which is why I cant exactly work things out but am listing things down here so you can do this!! LOL
answered by Robynne Lozier G2G6 Pilot (431k points)
edited by Robynne Lozier
Great work, Robynne. I'll keep working on Jane's mother's side until you hit your bingo just in case. :-) Let us know what you figure out!
I found a connection! I am entering it now. It's through Jane Wilde's mother's family. Robynne, it would be great to have one through Stephen himself, too, so don't give up on that one yet :-)
I may have to give up - at least for now.

I found Henry Atkinson Lund in the 1851 census when he was 5 years old with his widowed mother Susana Lund and an 8 year old brother named William.

Since the father was already dead, its going to be very hard to find this couple in the 1841 census - and only if that was after their marriage. We dont know for sure what Susana's maiden name was. We may or may not be able to assume that it was Atkinson.

The Atkinson family in the West Riding of Yorkshire, is huge - they have been there and in the records going back to the 1500s and they use the same names over and over again.

Maybe someone else with better access to records (FMP, My Heritage or Ancestry) can find them. I am restricted to just Family Search.
I'm trying to put in his Great-Uncles and Great-Aunts now in the Hawking line. Never hurts to get more family members to work with although I doubt I'm going to just randomly "hit" a connection this way. Just feels more complete when the whole family for a generation has been entered. Plus it gives me more spouses to work with for potential connections in the long run.
GRO has Henry Atkinson Lund birth registered 1845, sept quarter in Keighley Union. Mother's maiden name Atkinson.

Also William Lund birth registered 1842 Sept quarter, Keighley Union, mother's maiden surname Atkinson.
Thanks Joe that sure does help!!

Free BMD - Marriages Jun 1841  

ATKINSON  Susanna   Keighley     23    238

LUND     John     Keighley     23    238

So possibly look for a John Lund and family...
This MIGHT be them in the 1941 census

Pity there are no relationships shown!!

John Lund son of John Lund - no mother by the looks of things..
Abby, If the connection you have made is through Stephen's ex-wife - then perhaps she will need to have her profile open, or at elast, taken off private so we can see the connection. Thanks.
Anne (Groves) Atkinson: , is on WikiTree as the daughter of ;

Elizabeth Lund:

Elizabeth is the daughter of James Lund, farmer, according to the 1838 marriage between her and Hebdon Groves.
Not to confuse matters further, but this Hawking:

- her husband is Thomas Lund Knowles. I wonder if there isn't a "LUND" connection in there somewhere.
I've tried to sync the FAG profiles, But when I got back to Robert Percy Hawking, I found a different spouse, Fanny Mathews Hawking, mentioned on his tombstone as his wife, mother of two sons, but not of Frank Hawking, Stephen's father. I've added her as a later wife.
+5 votes
I see that this morning he is connected so we can relax and work on those profiles that were created to do this.
answered by Dale Byers G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
Yes, I've put a few sources on some of the associated profiles - some were a bit sparse.
+2 votes
When he died I actually went to look at his profile here. Ended up adopting both his parents profiles and down his mother’s father’s side. I am wondering why he is not a Notable? Anyways, he was a great man and I have adopted some of his family’s profiles and I am open to discussion etc!
answered by Darvana Woods G2G1 (1.3k points)
Stephen Hawking is no Notable? Go have a look again on the profile linked in the very first post up here. There is the Notable badge even above the Biography section.
There is now. There was not, however, before I asked about it. Or maybe my computer just wasn’t loading the screen right.
+4 votes

William Hawking married Deborah Boucher in 1805 at Newton on Ouse, a few miles SE of Boroughbridge.  They baptized a string of kids at the same church.

Lund was a local surname in the parish.  There are a lot of them in the batches.  A John "Hawkins", possibly William's brother, married an Ann Lund there in 1810.

Beningbrough is in the same parish.  It had been the seat of an illegitimate but wealthy branch of the Bourchiers since before 1600.  They came from Staffordshire and got Beningbrough through a marriage.  The name isn't local, and no other branches seem to have settled in Yorkshire.  So it seems inevitable that Deborah came from that family, though not as the squire's daughter.

However, as Karen found out before me, the line on Geni doesn't work.  Ralph (d 1768) left no sons.


answered by RJ Horace G2G6 Pilot (391k points)
Thanks, RJ. I was hesitant to trust Geni's line since I couldn't find any records to support it. I am happy to see that was the right move.
+2 votes
Anybody know where "Chatsworth Boroughbridge" is coming from?  Did he call his house Chatsworth or something?
answered by RJ Horace G2G6 Pilot (391k points)
edited by RJ Horace

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