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Monday, 13 July 2009

Skeletons in the family cupboard

I had vague recollections of my father saying he had a brother who died young so I set about trying to find out yesterday. He would never talk about him apart from saying it was a good thing he died young and he never said whether this brother was older or younger.

I found him - born in 1918 and died in 1926 - so older than my father. I remember being told he died when he was 6 but he actually appears to have died when my father was 6. I shall be obtaining both birth and death certificates as I would like to find out the cause of death.

I replied to a message on the noticeboard from someone who's husband's grandfather was the brother of my great grandmother! She'd only managed to identify 8 children in the family but I've found 12. My great great grandfather married twice and I don't yet know who his second wife was - I'm working on it.

I've also found out that my grandmother - father's mother - appears to have had a younger sister which I don't think I ever knew about. My father's parents did not speak to either side - his or hers - of their family so I'm not sure what went on there and probably won't find out now.

I had a good example of the perils of Census transcription. My great great grandfather was Alfred Slator. I knew he was on the 1891 census as I'd found him on FreeCen. There was no way I could find him on Ancestry until in the end I put in the reference for the address I knew he was living at. Bingo! It had been transcribed on there as Lackford Later and my great grandmother was down as Sarah Anne Later rather than Sarah Jane Slator! I have filed the appropriate corrections.


NAM said...

Oh, how very intriguing - I really don't have any unknown relatives except the possibility of one grandmother having had more children after she left my grandfather, so I'll be interested in an update on all this - and yes, I'm interested in other people's family trees as well as my own.

I generally find that the only reason most adults would say it was a good thing that a child died so young then is because there was some form of disability or serious illness.

Jilly said...

Serious illness or disability - that was my thinking. Because my Dad would never talk about it I've always wondered whether it was mental rather than physical. I shall be ordering those certificates today so I will let you know what happens.