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Simon and Elizabeth Cole

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Simon and Elizabeth Cole

Postby Woolhe » Wed Jan 25, 2017 1:02 pm

I am looking for a little help/advice regarding my 3x Great grandfather Simon Cole. He was baptised 28 February 1790 to Aaron and Elizabeth at Alphamstone, Essex.

I have found compilation details of discharge papers on FMP (his discharge having been lost or mislaid), which show that he enlisted with the Artillery Drivers, Rank Driver on 27 September 1804 (aged 15). He was discharged on 22 April 1816. He was in receipt of a Chelsea pension from 6 September 1826.

Can anyone advise me where I might find further details of the Artillery Drivers and where they might have been stationed or campaigns served? - Does this question need to go under Military rather than General queries on this forum?

Where I really need help/advice is regarding Simon's marriage and the name of the mother of his children. I have taken my research from the Essex Records Office parish records. All his children were baptised Holy Innocents, Lamarsh, the first being Sarah baptised 6 October 1816 (she was buried 5 May 1824 (aged 7)), then came Simon (1819), George (1822), Sarah (1824), Rebecca (1827), Eliza (1829) and Ephraim (1831). Parent's names on all baptisms are Simon and Sarah with Simon's profession being given as Husbandman or labourer. I have been unable to trace a marriage locally between Simon and a Sarah.

Given the date of his military discharge and the baptism of Sarah, could Simon have married whilst in the Army abroad?

In the 1841 census Simon is listed at Lamarsh with Elizabeth (aged 50, not born in county) and children Sarah, Rebecka, Eliza and Ephram. From this I assumed wife Sarah had died sometime between 1831 and 1841, but the only Sarah Cole burial I can find is for one aged 62 in 1835 at Lamarsh and I consider her too old as she would have been 58 when she had Ephraim. I cannot find a marriage between Simon and Elizabeth locally.

The 1851 census has Simon (aged 63) and Elizabeth (aged 63 born Exeter, Devon) living Lamarsh along with Ephram and lodger Daniel Clampin. How on earth does a woman born in Exeter end up in a remote village on the Essex/Suffolk border was my initial thought.

Simon and Elizabeth are living Kings Farm, Lamarsh in the 1861 census. Simon dies 4 May 1863 in Lamarsh, his occupation given as Artilleryman, Chelsea Pensioner.

Elizabeth died 19 November 1867 in Lamarsh. There was a coroner's inquest into her death. Because of this I searched BNA and found reports in Bury and Norwich Post and Watford Observer. What I found throw further queries in the pot! The newspapers report that Elizabeth was found dead in bed and although she was aged 80 her death was quite unexpected. "The deceased was the widow of a Waterloo veteran and passed through the whole of the Peninsular campaign with him".

If she was with him during the campaign is Elizabeth in actual fact the mother of all his children? If so why do the baptismal records show her name as Sarah? Also can anyone advise how a woman would have been on campaign as well.

Thank you in advance for any thoughts.
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Re: Simon and Elizabeth Cole

Postby grandmabear » Wed Jan 25, 2017 7:55 pm

Sometimes women did follow their men to war wars
There is an article on women in Napolianic wars on www.historynet that you might find interesting.
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Re: Simon and Elizabeth Cole

Postby MayHam » Fri Jan 27, 2017 3:07 am

Don't know if the following might provide more information or not.
Reference: WO 69/645/644
Description: Register (1) of drivers discharged or invalided Royal Artillery.
This entry appears on page 59; this number is imprinted in a circle on the top outer corner of each page. Simon COLE of C Troop. Discharged 1816 in Woolwich.
This record has not been digitised and cannot be downloaded. 
Request a quotation for a copy to be digitised or printed and sent to you. ... /C14459646

I notice the reference to Simon's death on mentions he served in Canada.
There is a Simon J. Cole listed as a single man but I'm not sure if it is the same person?
Great Britain, War Office (WO 28) : America : C-10862 ... 90?r=1&s=4
British Military and Naval Records (RG 8, C Series) - INDEX ONLY
Microform: c-11802, Page: 5057 ... 92&tt=6066

Women are recorded as serving with the British Army, usually as nurses or laundresses, since the French and Indian War (Seven Years War, ca. 1750) and maybe earlier, I don't know. At age 16, boys could enlist as soldiers. Younger boys usually served as drummers or fifers and girls were expected to marry. However, a few women dressed in mens' clothing and enlisted as regular soldiers.
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Re: Simon and Elizabeth Cole

Postby Woolhe » Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:51 pm

Sorry for the delay in replying. Thank you grandmabear the article was very interesting. Thank you also MayHam I certainly think the nationalarchives mention is worth following up. I too am not sure about the Canadian Simon J Cole, I will investigate further.
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