Searching the database
Although I provide a Search Facility just below, I recommend that you get into the habit of using your browser’s normal search facility with either ‘Stirnet’ or ‘site:stirnet.com’ included before the search subject – see Hints 2 & 3 below. That will work at least as well as the following Search Facility but, whilst the Google-facility provided below can be used only from this page, my recommended method can be used wherever you are on the Internet, even when you are not in this site.
– If the results are not what you expect, try again with a different spelling (eg Burke for Bourke). If you are not sure of the spelling, try an abbreviated form which covers the likely alternatives (eg. if not sure whether Southcote Southcott or Southcoate, try Southco). Don’t forget that we provide (here) a list of the family names included in the site.
– It is possible that the search result will identify some old Stirnet files with the extension .htm. Those files no longer exist but old links to them will be automatically redirected to the ‘proper’ files in our Families Database (which have the extension .php). Those obsolete htm files either were really quite old (before September 2007) or were set up over the period mid-2011 to early-2014 because the search engines were not good at picking up the previous version of this site. This new version of the site should be found OK by search engines but they will probably have cached (remembered) .htm files and may take time before they show the ‘proper’ .php pages.
Searching this and other sites for genealogical data
If you are new to this site then “Welcome!” I have tried to make it easy for people to find out a lot about the site quite quickly through, for example, the Frequently Asked Questions pages. However, if you are interested only in our Families Database, please do at least read About the database. Don’t forget that often the quickest way to find whether or not we cover a family you are interested in is to look at the relevant alphabetical sub-index page (links below and on the Lead Index page). The Families included page may also be useful.
1. Your browser should have its own search facility. It is normally shown at the top-right of the page, possibly using a magnifying glass as its symbol, and will probably have a small drop-down menu on its left side which will enable you to select from different types of search engine. The following hints may help you use that facility to search this site (and other sites also). They work with most of the major search engines but might not do so with every type.
2. To see if a particular word/phrase is associated with a particular site, add the name of that site before or after that word/phrase.
Example: Stirnet Nevill of Raby will make the search engine list sites where ‘Stirnet’ ‘Nevill’, ‘of’ and ‘Raby’ are all mentioned. Stirnet should appear at (or at least very near) the top of its findings. It will normally list only two or three findings per site.
3. To focus the search on a particular site, add ‘site:domain name’ before the search subject.
Example: To find references to ‘Nevill of Raby’ within Stirnet com, use site:stirnet.com Nevill of Raby which should make the search engine list at least one page in Stirnet (some search engines will list every page) where it has found the search subject.
4. To focus your search on a specific phrase, put that phrase between quote marks.
Example: To find exactly ‘Nevill of Raby’, use “Nevill of Raby” but remember that it will not then report “Nevile of Raby” or “Nevill, Lord of Raby” or “Nevill Raby”. If you want to focus your search on Stirnet, keep Stirnet out of the quotes – “Nevil of Raby” Stirnet – as otherwise the search engine will look for “Nevill of Raby Stirnet” which does not appear anywhere in this site (other than here).
5. If you are not sure of the spelling of a word/name, either use an abbreviated version which will cover all likely alternatives or use OR to make the search consider the alternatives.
(a) To find either Widvile or Widville, you should search for “Widv” but remember that, in the past, Ys were often used where we would nowadays use Is so, for this example, be prepared to search also for “Wydv”.
(b) To find either ‘Nevill of Raby’ or ‘Nevile of Raby’ either use Nevil Raby (most search engines will see the short Nevil within longer words such as Nevill, Nevile & Neville) or use Nevill OR Nevile Raby. OR is being used here in a formulaic way. AND can also be used (requiring both words) though some search engines use a plus sign instead (+). OR and AND can be used more than once but you have to be a bit of an expert in Boolean logic to combine them.
6. Except when you are using OR or AND, do not worry whether or not to capitalise words unless you find that your search engine is one of those which are case sensitive. Most of the major search engines are not case sensitive.
Example: nevill of raby should produce the same result as Nevill of Raby.
7. Unless you need them for your search, or are using OR or AND in a formulaic way, do not worry too much about using common words such as ‘of’. They can sometimes make a difference but they usually appear so often in a site that most search engines appear to ignore such words unless you specifically tell them to consider them by inserting those words between quote marks.
8. Internet search engines should take you to the page where the relevant word/phrase is shown, and some may highlight the word/phrase to make it easier to find, but most take you to the top of the page and not to the precise spot in the page where that word/phrase is found. Don’t forget that, if you press Ctrl+F, your browser should provide you with a ‘page search’ facility (normally at the bottom left of the page, sometimes at the top right) which will allow you to search for that word/phrase on that page.
Don’t forget that many of the alphabetical index pages include ‘miscellaneous’ files (eg AZmiscXX).