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Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

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Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby JaneyH » Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:52 am

Charles Squire Denniss was born in Hitchin, Hertfordshire in 1853 (note the double 's' on the end of the surname: it's there with later family members but more variable further back). He was the son of Charles Denniss and Amelia (nee Hilsden), and for most of his working life was a carpenter/joiner. In 1877 he married Elizabeth Smith in Deptford, SE London although they settled in Hitchin. I've found the records for their family in the 1881, 1891, 1901 and 1911 Censuses. From these there are the following eight children: Ada Amelia (1878), Percy Charles (1881), Archibald Squire (1884), Hilda Elizabeth (1886), Frank (1888), Charles Squire (1891), Cyril Jack (1895) and Harold Edward (1902) - all born in Hitchin. (Birth years from BMD registers rather than those given in Census records.)

The 1911 Census shows that Charles and Elizabeth had in fact had nine children, or which eight were alive. I've tracked down the missing one as Stanley Denniss, born and died 1897. First question - having cross-checked these nine children against the new GRO index they all show the mother's maiden name as "Smith" except Hilda Elizabeth Denniss (1886), where the mother is shown as "Nicholls". If anyone can shed any light on this I'd be grateful. She's with the family in 1891 (age 5) in 1901 (age 14) and marries Hiram Phillips in 1907. Obviously the sure-fire way to check is to buy the birth certificate, but I wondered if anyone had any ideas first.

The 1911 Census for Charles and Elizabeth shows a real houseful of people, of mixed generations. The transcription on Ancestry differs a bit from that on FMP, the latter being more helpful. So, looking at the Census page itself I come to the next question. Line 9 says "Mrs Millard Ada, daughter, 32, married less than 1 year". This would appear to be the eldest daughter Ada Amelia ... BUT her marriage appears to be for December quarter 1911 (i.e. after the Census was taken) to a James Millard. Was she so excited about getting married she pretended she already was? I note that the "less than 1 year" part has been scribbled out in red ink, so might the enumerator have corrected things?

Finally, I'm curious about the comment written in red ink "please ascertain if all above persons slept here on Census night". I've never seen this before, so again all ideas welcome.
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Re: Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby ianbee » Sun Dec 04, 2016 3:22 pm

Hi
On her marriage to Charles Squire Denniss, 24 May 1877, St Paul Deptford, Elizabeth's father is named as Frederick Nicholls Smith. So that may have something to do with the Nicholls name appearing as a maiden name in the GRO index.
"please ascertain if all above persons slept here on Census night"
Perhaps they were concerned that all of the twelve people listed, which is quite a lot, might not actually be permanently living there. They did have six rooms though.
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Re: Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby ianbee » Sun Dec 04, 2016 3:38 pm

Occupation of Frederick Nicholls Smith being given as Shoemaker.
From the census returns, Elizabeth Denniss was born circa 1857 in Hitchin, Herts.
1861 census, in Baldock, lodging with William + Sarah Goodchild are
Frederick Nichols married 25 Shoe Maker
Maria Nichols married 22 Shoe binder
Elizabeth Nichols 4
Anne Nichols 2
all born Hitchin
piece 816 folio 18 page 29

An Elizabeth Nicholls, 14, with her grandparents, James and Mary Nicholls, in Hitchin in 1871.
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Re: Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby ianbee » Sun Dec 04, 2016 4:42 pm

Hi again
There's a baptism at Hitchin, 2 Sep 1859 of -
Annie
parents Frederick + Maria Nicholls
abode Back St
father a Shoe Maker

and a possible birth registration, Sep 1859, Hitchin, Anne Nicholls - mother Smith.
However, for Elizabeth there apparently is no registration or baptism in Hitchin as Nicholls.
There is though a baptism at Hitchin, 12 May 1858, of -
Elizabeth
parent Maria Smith
abode Back St
mother a Single woman
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Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby brunes08 » Sun Dec 04, 2016 6:19 pm

Re ianbee's post above. The census is not about who lives at an address permanently - it is only to record who was at the address for the one night - so I'm sure this was just a slip on ianbee's part. I think that the enumerator is only checking the family relationships and numbers of people etc - being thorough, in fact. To put this in context, one would need to see other returns that were gathered by the same enumerator. I've seen comments by enumerators before when sorting out a multiple occupation household. All details would be checked before transferring the relevant information to the summary sheets and to ensure individuals weren't recorded at more than one address ( if they were just visiting).
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Re: Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby ianbee » Sun Dec 04, 2016 6:44 pm

Hi Brunes
You are absolutely right. Apologies for my howler!

On the subject of curious 1911 census forms, I've got one
Living at 21 Padwell Road, Southampton
Miss Gough, age between 40 and 50, single, Formerly a Dairy Shop Keeper
Is not signed.
Says,
"Filled in by A T Burt, Registrar of Births and Deaths
as requested in letter of the 6th April 1911 from
secretary, Census Office, London, S.W."
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Re: Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby sdup26 » Mon Dec 05, 2016 10:31 am

Poor Miss Gough. Was she found dead, with her census form filled in but not signed?
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Re: Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby ianbee » Mon Dec 05, 2016 11:53 am

Hi sdup
Checking again, she - Alice Elizabeth Gough - actually died 15 December 1913. So presumably she could have completed her census form, had she wanted to.
Why the local registrar was involved is a mystery!
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Re: Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby ianbee » Mon Dec 05, 2016 12:11 pm

I guess that the census enumerator would been appointed by, or came under the auspices of the local registrar. Possibly they reported there was a problem at that address.

Going back to Janey's question -
Marriage in Hitchin district, June 1859 3a 257
Nicholls, Frederick
Smith, Maria
(two other names)

Gives the problem of whether Elizabeth was actually the daughter of Frederick. But she may be with his parents in 1871, which is hopeful.
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Re: Charles Squire Denniss 1853-1932

Postby JaneyH » Mon Dec 05, 2016 4:54 pm

Many thanks to ianbee and brunes for your help. I should have looked at that 1877 marriage register entry more carefully and followed up the bride's father.

Any thoughts on the Ada Denniss / Millard question? I've checked the details on Ancestry, FMP and freebmd and they all have Q4 of 1911 - after the Census was taken.


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