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Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

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Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby Brian Chatters » Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:57 pm

I am having a problem resolving a clash of information regarding two (supposedly) sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters (my great-grandparents).

Their eldest son Charles was supposed born in 1874 and I have a lot of data about him but I have never been able to find a record in the index to births. I checked the local register for the registration district as well as the national index without success. He is listed in the 1881 and 1891 census returns living with his parents and he enlisted in the army in 1892. His army records give him a date of birth of about October 1874. I have a copy of a letter from his daughter to a friend in America stating that his date of birth was October 22nd 1874. The 1939 register states his date of birth as October 27th 1873. His baptism record at Glemsford gives his date of birth as March 8th, 1873 but the record is clearly wrong. The local vicar must have had a purge on the villagers and baptised nineteen children from a number of families on the same day. The entries in the register contain numerous errors so they are unreliable.

Given the above information, all appears straightforward. It was not unusual for individuals to not know the year of their birth and the small discrepancy between the 1939 register and the information from his daughter may be due to a clerical error. But my problem is this. I have discovered that Charles and Charlotte had another son, Reuben, who was born in 1874. I ordered a copy of his birth certificate which gives his date of birth as May 5th 1874. I have considered the possibility that Reuben was the grandchild of Charles and Charlotte who had two daughters who were 15 and 14 at that time. However, I cannot find any other information about Reuben; no death record and no entries in the following censuses.

Any thoughts, suggestions on where else I may look for help, or additional information will be very welcome!

Regards
Brian Chatters
 
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby Sylcec » Tue Nov 14, 2017 4:22 am

OK - first problem: were Charles and Charlotte married and if so when? If not, then Charles Chatters junior may have been registered under Charlotte's maiden or previous name.
Using FreeBMD the only marriage for a Charles Chatters 1872-1880 is this one:
Marriages Jun 1875
CHATTERS Charles Lexden 4a 446
WOODS Hannah Lexden 4a 446

although going back there is a marriage in Diss, Norfolk 12 Jan 1868 to Charlotte Welham found on FMP. Could Charles jn be older than you think?
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby Brian Chatters » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:52 am

Charles and Charlotte were married in Diss (I have a copy of their marriage certificate). Charlotte was two years older than Charles. Apart from the birth of Reuben, everything else with the family appears straightforward. They had two daughters before Charles and they had four more children after he was born. I have a number of birth certificates and there is no evidence of any illegitimate children.
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby sdup26 » Tue Nov 14, 2017 11:01 am

Is it possible that Charles and Charlotte registered their son Reuben, then changed their minds about his name, so that ever after, he was known as Charles?
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby sdup26 » Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:49 pm

In 1891, Long Melford, Sudbury, Suffolk, household of George Chatters b1823 and wife Elizabeth (she was born Glemsford), there are two grandsons: Reuben Chatters b1878 in Glemsford, and Albert Chatters b1887 in Melford.
This Reuben may be the man who joined the Army in 1899, Suffolk Regiment, soldier number 5413, and who was discharged in 1916 due to chronic bronchitis. Do any of the names fit with your family?
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby Brian Chatters » Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:24 pm

Reuben who was born in 1878 is a different person. He was the illegitimate son of Jane Chatters who was a sister of Charles. Any other suggestions are welcome,
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby sdup26 » Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:18 am

In that case, I can only refer you to my previous theory, that Reuben and Charles are the same person.
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby Brian Chatters » Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:04 am

Thank you for your help.
It is possible that Charles and Reuben are the same person and I did think that might be the case. The only issue with that theory is that Charles always believed that he as born in October rather than May. I guess we will never know.
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby sdup26 » Wed Nov 15, 2017 5:01 pm

It's very frustrating for you that there doesn't appear to be a clear result. As to Charles' birth, we have endless reminders of our birth date, such as driving licence, passport and so on, but our ancestors couldn't always be so certain. An elderly relative of my mother had to send for his birth certificate for a reason I can't remember, and discovered he was born in a different month, and a full year out, from what he'd always thought to be correct. I've got other examples in my tree too, so I'm a bit cautious about 'firm' birth dates.
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Re: Sons of Charles and Charlotte Chatters

Postby JudyMC » Fri Nov 17, 2017 5:56 pm

I agree with one or two of the other posts, in that Reuben and Charles are one and the same. I had the same problem. I have a birthday book giving James his birth date but could not find a birth certificate for him. When the GRO came on board, I checked without a Christian name, sighting mother's maiden name and came up with Benjamin. At no time has Benjamin been on any Census's nor a death date. He married as James and died as James
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