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Poor Law and elusive relative

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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby clare_bear » Sat Jan 30, 2010 2:05 pm

ksouthall wrote:clare_bear

I also saw the birth registration for Caroline Williams in Falmouth in Apr-Jun 1900, however felt that this is the less likely one as that would be a late registration for a November birth.

There are only 3 Crisilda's in the 1911 Census:-

Crisilda Clegg aged 56, living in Fylde, Lancashire
Crisilda Elizabeth Freeman aged 42, living in Hackney
Crisilda Gillespie aged 10, living in Cardiff.

I could not find Crisilda Williams in the 1901 or 1911 Censuses. I also found no death record for her.

Hope this helps,
ksouthall


This helps a lot, thank you very much - the census info and the lack of death certificate make it a real possibility that Crisilda is Carrie.

So, it looks like the Caroline Williams in the 1911 census isn't Crisilda, which is what I wanted to rule out and is a good thing. You're right that Caroline Williams in Falmouth isn't likely to be her.

Carrie Williams is on the 1901 census and the 1911 census, so I have records for her beyond her birth certificate. I also have marriage and death certificates for her, so maybe one last check from me on a possible marriage certificate for Crisilda, and if that comes back negative, I shall take a punt on Crisilda's birth certificate.

This is really exciting, thanks very much for your help. :D

So, if Crisilda is who I'm after
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby clare_bear » Wed Feb 17, 2010 12:11 pm

OK, I now have the birth certificate for Crisilda Caroline Williams, but I'm none the wiser!

The info on the certificate is:

Crisilda Caroline James (!) Williams born on 14th Jan 1900 at Polengrain (? I can't really read it), Wendron.
- any ideas where 'Polengrain' is or what it actually says? It doesn't ring a bell!

Father: William Williams (a solicitor's clerk)
Mother: Ethel Williams formerly Williams - which suggests she's married, but as the names are the same could be misleading?

Informant: Ann Williams (the mark of rather than a sig), registered a month later on 17th Feb 1900


Any ideas where I should go from here to try to disprove/confirm a link to my Carrie Williams? I was hoping something clicked with the info I already had from family hearsay (father's name John, or born at Carnebone, for instance), but nothing does so I have no idea!

On her marriage certificate (Carrie's), her father was called John and was a tin miner, whereas William is a Solicitor's Clerk. Could the details on Carrie's marriage cert have all been made up (info she was given about her father)?


Any assistance would be much appreciated!
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby callbrian » Wed Feb 17, 2010 1:58 pm

Hi,
I believe you are looking for Polglase I can't find Polgrain on a local map. Polglase is mentioned in the 1891 census for Wendron district, unfortunately there was just one family noted. Just in case you are interested, Polglase is situated on the A 3083 at Cross Lanes, follow A394 from Helston.
Living down in Cornwall, as I do, I can relate to family history being a minefield, everyone seems to be related in some way or another.
Brian
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby callbrian » Wed Feb 17, 2010 2:15 pm

Hi again,
I forgot to add that Polglase is also a local surname, also a mine.
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby clare_bear » Wed Feb 17, 2010 5:38 pm

callbrian wrote:Hi,
I believe you are looking for Polglase I can't find Polgrain on a local map. Polglase is mentioned in the 1891 census for Wendron district, unfortunately there was just one family noted. Just in case you are interested, Polglase is situated on the A 3083 at Cross Lanes, follow A394 from Helston.
Living down in Cornwall, as I do, I can relate to family history being a minefield, everyone seems to be related in some way or another.
Brian


Thanks, Brian, but it does look a lot more like Polengrain than Polglase. I'm from Helston, so I've been thrown by the fact that it looks nothing like anywhere I recognise (although there are a lot of little villages/hamlets that I may not have heard of!). Could it be a farm name or something? :?
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby ksouthall » Thu Feb 18, 2010 1:51 am

clare_bear wrote:On her marriage certificate (Carrie's), her father was called John and was a tin miner, whereas William is a Solicitor's Clerk. Could the details on Carrie's marriage cert have all been made up (info she was given about her father)?

Any assistance would be much appreciated!


Sorry the record does not seem to fit.

It is possible that the details on Carrie's marriage certificate were made up, either based on what she had been told as a child or possibly mixed up with information about the people who looked after her. I can't remember what Fanny Allen's husband did, assuming she had one.

I suppose it is always possible that Carrie was Ethel's daughter from an extra-marital affair which Ethel's husband may have been unaware of at the time of Carrie's birth. We can only speculate on what may have happened, however, according to Davidoff et al. (1999), approximately 10% of the population are estimated not to be the children of their putative fathers, so this is not an impossible scenario.

I guess the next step is to try and track Ethel Williams and her husband through the 1901 and 1911 Censuses and the Death indexes to see if they had died.

Another alternative would be to order the birth certificate for the Caroline born in Falmouth. Details as follows:-

Name: Caroline Williams
Year of Registration: 1900
Quarter of Registration: Apr-May-Jun
District: Falmouth
County: Cornwall
Volume: 5c
Page: 154
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby steve bannister 1 » Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:14 am

Hi Clare,

I’ve only just noticed this thread, and I soon as I did, I thought to myself, ‘Something’s wrong, here’. Once I started digging, I couldn't leave it alone.

I do love the challenging problems that family history throws up once in a while. Unfortunately, the answers we find aren’t always what we want to hear.

There is a very good reason why Crisila was given up after birth, gave false details on her marriage certificate and why Ethel had the same surname as William Williams.

I believe that Crisila was the result of either an incestuous relationship, or a rape, between William Williams and his daughter, Ethel Williams.

According to the 1901 census, William Williams was a Stone Mason, aged 51. Ethel Williams was his daughter, aged 23. Their address? 1 Pollengrain, in the hamlet of Pollengrain in Wendron, Helston, Truro, Cornwall.

There were 8 residences in Pollengrain, numbered 1 to 8 on the census. Number 4 was Pollengrain Farm. At number 1, lived William Williams (Head) aged 51, Ann (Wife) aged 52, Ethel (Daughter) aged 23, Loveday Williams (Daughter) Aged 20, Gwendlion Symons (Visitor) Aged 14, Octavia Symons (Visitor) Aged 12, Flossie Symons (Granddaughter) Aged 4 and Ernest Symons (Grandson) Aged 1.

The informant, Ann Williams, that you have, would have been Ethel’s mother and William Williams wife. Where the Solicitors Clerk comes into it, I don’t know, as William Williams is definitely a Stone Mason on the 1901 census. But the ‘Solicitor’s Clerk’ part was probably just to throw people of the trail.

What amazes me, is that they are all still together in the house, apart from Crisilda, a year after the birth. Was William Williams forgiven? Why were there a lot of young girls in the house on the 1901 census? Was that how the family was and it was just accepted? Who knows.

10 years previously, in the 1891 census, William Williams, Ann, Ethel and Loveday were living at ‘Rame’, Helston, Wendron, Cornwall. William was still a Stone Mason.

Looking at the 1881 census, we can see that Ethel’s full name is Ethel Medina Williams. Ann’s full name is Anne Pryor Williams. Loveday’s full name is Loveday Jane Pryor Williams. The 1881 Census also tells us that it is not William Williams, but Willian Williams. Willian Williams is still a Stone Mason, and they are living at ‘Halvosso’, Mabe, Cornwall. Interestingly, there is another young girl at the same house as a visitor; Jane Pearce, aged 18.

Ethel’s birth in 1878 in Constantine, Cornwall confirms that she is the daughter of Ann Williams and Willian Williams. Looking closer to the handwriting, now, on the 1901 census and the 1891 census, I can see that it is actually Willian Williams. Perhaps that is why he has been hard to trace. I have noticed, though, he is also mistranscribed on other censuses as well. I have found him as ‘William’ on censuses as far back as the 1850 one.

So, sorry for the bad news but there is definitely a bigger story for you to unravel here. I would check online newspapers, even local court and Old Bailey proceedings. Willian/William may have just got caught one day, if this was a regular thing for him. It would be good to see if he and his family are still together in the 1911 census. Had his wife thrown him out by then? Or was his behaviour accepted?

Good luck with the rest of your search.
Researching:
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby ksouthall » Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:50 am

steve bannister 1 wrote:Hi Clare,

I believe that Crisila was the result of either an incestuous relationship, or a rape, between William Williams and his daughter, Ethel Williams.

According to the 1901 census, William Williams was a Stone Mason, aged 51. Ethel Williams was his daughter, aged 23. Their address? 1 Pollengrain, in the hamlet of Pollengrain in Wendron, Helston, Truro, Cornwall.

is definitely a bigger story for you to unravel here. I would check online newspapers, even local court and Old Bailey proceedings. Willian/William may have just got caught one day, if this was a regular thing for him. It would be good to see if he and his family are still together in the 1911 census. Had his wife thrown him out by then? Or was his behaviour accepted?

Good luck with the rest of your search.


I have abbreviated Steve's message for ease. Hope you don't mind Steve.

What Steve has found is certainly a possibility. It is also possible that the father was unknown so they put Willian's name down as the father to suggest Ethel was married and make it look more respectable when registering the birth. The registrar in Helston may not have known the family well so would have been unaware of the implications. They would not have imagined that, 110 years later, people would be investigating their family and the potential confusion or furore it could cause.

The parish registers might hold more information as, if Crisilda was baptised, it may name her father. If it was Willian, they would probably not have mentioned that to the vicar so it could appear as "unknown", although that would also be the case if they were unsure of who the father was. Alternatively, if it was someone else and they knew his name, he might be mentioned in the parish register. It is surprising how often baseborn children's fathers are named.

I have done a quick search under the surname Williams and mother's name Ethel, on Cornwall Parish Clerks Online and not found a baptism, but that doesn't mean Crisilda wasn't baptised.

In many ways, although I hope Crisilda is the right person, I hope Willian was not her father, especially as Ethel had a sister called Loveday which is such a nice name. I found another Loveday in Devon last week, so am wondering if it was a South West name.

Steve is right that the local newspapers might have more information. For once, I might even suggest the fairy tale idea that Crisilda's father could have been the local farmer or landowner, or his son, so the family were paid to cover up his indiscretion. Probably not very likely, but maybe something you can think about to soften the blow of Steve's suggestion.
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby clare_bear » Thu Feb 18, 2010 10:31 am

Wow! I had no idea I was walking into this this morning!

Steve, whether the incestuous/rape suggestion is right or wrong, this is not 'bad' news for me as a researcher - although I have no idea how I'll explain the possibility to my great aunt (Carrie's daughter!). I'll try not to think top hard about it as a recent descendant, but children by rape is far from uncommon in my recent family tree, it seems! Incest would be another issue, but nevermind!

I still hold out hope that William was on the birth certificate to make it look like she was married, though, especially given the family hearsay that her father's name was John (Williams, so equally likely to be made up!) and that they lived at Carnebone farm - harbouring hopes of the farmer's son being the father!

This is clearly not over yet, but I am absolutely thrilled at what Steve and ksouthall have uncovered so far! To sum up, I am absolutely thrilled and can't thank you enough, Steve, for what you've found out!! I've been struggling to find out (being very suspicious given the lack of fact!) what may have transpired with Carrie and this could be a significant lead - I guess I can't be sure that Crisilda is Carrie yet, but it's given me a load of options to explore, which is considerably more than I had yesterday!

I shall need some time to look through all the info properly and digest it and I'm currently a bit stacked at work, but I'm now excited!

Thanks all, very, very much appreciated.
Clare
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Re: Poor Law and elusive relative

Postby ksouthall » Thu Feb 18, 2010 12:56 pm

clare_bear wrote:I still hold out hope that William was on the birth certificate to make it look like she was married, though, especially given the family hearsay that her father's name was John (Williams, so equally likely to be made up!) and that they lived at Carnebone farm - harbouring hopes of the farmer's son being the father!



Clare,

I forgot to mention this morning, were there any families nearby with the surname James? As that was one of Crisilda's middle names, that could be a hint about who the father was.

If there was a John James living locally, could he be your man?

Katherine
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