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What happened to Charles Taylor?

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What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby Norfolk Nan » Mon Dec 09, 2019 8:38 pm

In July 1870 Charles Taylor married Mary Ann Sharp at St Mary’s Church, Battersea by licence. It was a dodgy affair - the witnesses were the parish clerk and Mary Ann’s 12 year old daughter, Bertha. Their addresses were simply ‘Battersea’.

The couple are never together afterwards as far as census and other family events go. In 1871 Charles is in Brighton working as a butler, stating he is married, but Mary Ann is in Suffolk visiting family. In 1881 and 1891 she is in Paddington, London, either working or living with Bertha and still married. Only in 1901 does she call herself a widow. But where is Charles?

Charles is baptised in Fairford, Gloucestershire on 15.3.1836, son of William and Louise. In 1851, 1861 and 1871 he is a servant. In 1861 he is working at Saxham Hall, Great Saxham, Suffolk, the village where Mary Ann Sharp had been born in 1830 and where she had given birth to Bertha (father always unknown) in 1859. Clearly I’m wondering if Charles is dad and if he had to be coerced into the marriage (better late than never) but managed to bolt soon after the deed was done. Is there any way I can unpick the circumstances of the wedding licence?
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Re: What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby MoVidger » Tue Dec 10, 2019 5:58 pm

Have you ruled out this 1874 death although you'd need the certificate to confirm if it's your man:

Name: Charles Taylor
Estimated birth year: abt 1836
Registration Year: 1874
Registration Quarter: Apr-May-Jun
Age at Death: 38
Registration district: Brighton
Volume: 2b
Page: 166

On a separate note, it's interesting that his occupation on his 1870 marriage record is "beer retailer" when his census record occupations are servant/butler/footman.
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Re: What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby Norfolk Nan » Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:36 pm

It is but the whole wedding seems odd. And there aren’t many butlers or footmen living in Battersea, it’s where the poor went when they’d run out of luck.

As for the death, I hadn’t considered it but I should so thank you. The one mark against it is that Mary doesn’t call herself a widow until the 1901 census - but I’ve no idea if she knew what had happened to him or was just being hopeful. Thanks for looking.
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Re: What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby MoVidger » Tue Dec 10, 2019 7:42 pm

The Charles Taylor connected to the 1874 death in Brighton was a "footman to Mr Young of Brunswick Square". He may be your chap after all. Apologies - the article is too long for me to retype, but can be accessed below if you have a FMP or BNA subscription.

Chichester Express and West Sussex Journal 07 July 1874 - "Fatal Bathing Accident"

The deceased, who was unable to swim, walked out a considerable distance into a low tide at the Russell Street Bathing Station, and sunk before he could be rescued.
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Re: What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby Norfolk Nan » Tue Dec 10, 2019 7:53 pm

Oh no, poor chap. I was thinking I should look through the newspapers but you’ve succeeded, Mo. Much appreciated. Poor Mary, she didn’t have much luck, her father was run over by a muck cart and killed when she was very young. Thanks again.
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Re: What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby ianbee » Tue Dec 10, 2019 8:02 pm

The Charles Taylor death in Brighton in 1874 might of course be the right one, but possibly is not connected to the newspaper report (sorry!)

TAYLOR, Charles, footman to Mr Young (drowned)
The Keep indexes a report in the Sussex Agricultural Express, also from 7 July
https://www.thekeep.info/collections/ge ... T_1_38_120

If that age is right, maybe the name was wrong (not an uncommon occurrence in the newspapers!)
Sep 1874 Brighton 2b 107
Taylor, James
age 18
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Re: What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby MoVidger » Tue Dec 10, 2019 8:07 pm

Good find, Ian! Wow - what are the odds of another Charles Taylor (also a footman) dying in Brighton that summer? Sounds like the 1874 death cert for the elder CT is the way forward now.
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Re: What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby Norfolk Nan » Tue Dec 10, 2019 8:15 pm

Thanks for picking this up, Ianbee. I hadn’t realised how many Charles Taylor’s there were until I began my search. I need to dig deeper I think. Thanks both.
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Re: What happened to Charles Taylor?

Postby Norfolk Nan » Mon Dec 23, 2019 10:13 am

Just an update on this - the poor chap who drowned wasn't my Charles Taylor but it did lead me to find out what happened to him. Mine had died a few weeks before from prolonged bronchitis and pneumonia. Still sad but not so dramatic.
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