The Blagdon Surname Study originated from a genealogical 'brick wall' dating back to 1799.
In 2015, I participated in the first "Genealogy Do-Over", created by Thomas MacEntee. The idea behind this was that you discarded all your previous research (but not the things like certificates where you had to spend money!) and started again from scratch. Those who couldn't quite bear to do that (including me) did what was called a "Go-Over", where we reviewed our current research instead of starting from scratch.
The first thing I learned was to slow down. And the line I tried all this out on? My BLAGDON line (my paternal grandmother). I had got stuck in Devon, England at 1799, and for some reason shied away from trying harder. I am very blessed in that FindMyPast has not only excellent records for Devon, but has also scanned the records themselves, so I could see the brown spidery handwriting for myself (and I had to learn Secretary Hand to do it, in some cases!) And to my surprise, by slowing down and being extra-diligent, I found connections. And more connections. And more connections. In the end, I went back two hundred years! (and my 'Go-Over' turned into a 'Do-Over', where I started from scratch).
But it didn't stop there. I became so fascinated by my BLAGDON ancestors, and felt I really knew them as people, rather than just names and dates. Once again, I was fired by the study of genealogy and family history - so I started a surname study. But it hasn't stopped there. I thought there were only a few BLAGDONs in Devon - mainly my own ancestors. But in studying the surname and gathering the people, I found that they were in Brixham, and Hooe, and Silverton, to name just a few places. I thought I was keeping my study small, by not making it worldwide. But the variety of places in Devon is proving to be an excellent foundation. Who knows? I might even expand my horizons yet!
Blagdon Surname Study