Our team of ex­perts offfff­fers tips and in­spi­ra­tion, help­ing read­ers solve prob­lems in their re­search

I’ve hit a brick wall in my re­search with my great great grand­fa­ther. Can you help me to iden­tify his wife and his BMD records please?

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine - - READER STORY - Paul Blake

QAc­cord­ing to the census records of 1871 to 1891, my pa­ter­nal great great grand­fa­ther, Ti­mothy O’Con­nor, lived at 3 Lit­tle Pearl Street, Spi­tal­fields, in Lon­don. This is also the ad­dress given on the mar­riage cer­tifi­cate of 1888 for his daugh­ter, Jo­hanna, and Thomas Mcel­lig­ott. Census records show Ti­mothy, a brick­layer’s labourer, was born in County Kerry, Ire­land, in 1831.

How­ever, I can’t find his wife’s name, or any birth, mar­riage or death record for Ti­mothy him­self. Can you help please? Keith Styles, by email

AIn 1871, Ti­mothy is de­scribed as mar­ried but there is no wife listed. In 1881 and 1891, he is de­scribed as a wid­ower.

It’s pos­si­ble that he was in fact wid­owed by 1871. Th­ese three cen­suses list sev­eral chil­dren: Ti­mothy, born in 1858-60, Aldgate or City; Mary A, born in 1861-62, Spi­tal­fields; Anna, born in 1863-64, Whitechapel; Cather­ine or Kate, born in 1863-66, Spi­tal­fields. Jo­hanna could be the same child as Mary A or Anna.

The census of 1871 is the only ex­am­ple when ‘born Kerry’ is recorded for Ti­mothy. In 1881, the fam­ily is recorded as Con­nor. You need to con­sider both O’Con­nor and Con­nor, as well as other pos­si­ble vari­ants of the sur­name.

The 1861 census en­try for 16 Amelia Place, St Bo­tolph Aldgate, in­cludes: Ti­mothy Con­nor, aged 32, a labourer, born Ire­land; his wife, pos­si­bly Betty or Brid­get, but dif­fi­cult to be cer­tain; and two sons, Ti­mothy and Thomas, aged three years and 10 months, both born in Lon­don. The fact that Ti­mothy, in the 1871 census, was born in Aldgate makes it very likely this is the cor­rect fam­ily.

The in­dexes to Gen­eral Reg­is­ter Of­fice births and deaths in­clude sev­eral pos­si­ble en­tries for this fam­ily, un­der O’Con­nor and Con­nor.

Have you in­ves­ti­gated th­ese fully? If you can iden­tify any of the births, then this will give you the mother’s name. Ti­mothy may have mar­ried in Ire­land be­fore mi­grat­ing to Lon­don.

I’m as­sum­ing the fam­ily was Catholic, there­fore track­ing down the bap­tism reg­is­ters for the chil­dren may not be straight­for­ward. Catholic bap­tism reg­is­ters would of­ten in­clude the mother’s full name. You will know in which church Jo­hanna O’Con­nor mar­ried, so this may be a start.

Whitechapel was in the Catholic Dio­cese of West­min­ster. Many reg­is­ters are held at the Dio­cese of West­min­ster Ar­chives at rc­dow.org.uk/dio­cese/ar­chives – for ex­am­ple, the church of St Anne, Un­der­wood Road, Spi­tal­fields, si­t­u­ated in the Tower Ham­lets Dean­ery and founded in 1850.

Michael Gandy’s Catholic Mis­sions and Reg­is­ters 1700-1880, Vol 1, Lon­don & the Home Coun­ties, could give you guid­ance.

The 1861 census for ‘ Ti­mothy Con­nor’ shows him liv­ing at 16 Amelia Place, St Bo­tolph Aldgate

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.