Hello, I’m Karrie Drake, founder and Director of Family Detective, my family history company which started off as just a little acorn five years ago. General interest in ancestry has never been greater but not everyone has the time or skill to research their own. I have helped hundreds of people discover their past and find out how they fit into their family’s story.

karrie_about_fullMy husband, Adam, says that my job is, “finding dead people,” which is actually a pretty accurate description of what my team and I do every day. I hope you enjoy reading my blog which is all about researching family histories – the funny stories, the challenges and the wonderful rewards.

I hope you will find some useful hints and information in my posts which will help you unravel your own history. Perhaps you are wondering about where to start or maybe you have hit a brick wall and have run out of ideas? My aim is to let you in on some secrets of successful research – to share techniques which will help you break through the brick walls and reach back as far as the records will take you. I’ll be posting two or three times a week so please subscribe so that you don’t miss out.


My own personal story is filled with a love of history and research. From my teens I have cassette taped recordings of my grandparents when I interviewed them about their lives and their stories from the war. I loved making photo albums and scrapbooks which I felt, in that romantic and slightly over-dramatic teenage way, might be handed down through the generations.

From 1987 to 1992 I attended the University of Warwick and gained a B.A. and a research Masters in Theatre Studies and Dramatic Arts. For a while I considered a career in the theatre or media until I realised the sacrifices that this would entail in other areas of my life, particularly my marriage and family.

Whilst I was still deciding which road to take, I wrote several short stage and radio plays which were performed in the UK and America. I love being a Mother and spent a decade at home with my three gorgeous children, whilst working evenings for several Direct Sales companies. Over the last twenty years, home has been China, Canada and the UK and I currently live in a beautiful Devon village where my husband and I also run a small Christian fellowship.

My love of family history research was discovered just as my youngest child started school and I was taken on as a Researcher by a local genealogist. As soon as I began, I realised that this was my dream job. For me, it’s like doing a giant jigsaw. I love being able to piece together my customers’ stories and revealing the secrets of their family history. Once I realised the potential for an on-line business, Family Detective was born and has been thriving ever since.

If you’re interested in commissioning your own Family History research, please visit: familydetective.co.uk – we’d love to help you discover your past!