Maiden Name Mystery
The article ‘The GRO Birth Index solved my family mysteries’ (Eureka Moment, November) struck a chord, as I had hoped that it would solve my brick wall. The 1881 census of Higham Ferrers shows my great grandfather William Miller with his children Mary Ann (aged 27),
Walter (18), Annie (16), William (14), Jane (11), Emily (10) and my grandmother Ellen (8). Mary Ann was a child of his first marriage, to Mary Wells. However, I have been unable to trace my great grandmother, William’s second wife (Sarah Ann).
Hoping to find her maiden name I searched the GRO Birth Index to find to my astonishment that for Walter, Annie and Emily the mother’s maiden name is shown as ‘White’, but for William, Jane and Ellen it is ‘Wilkins’! I have traced a marriage in Northampton between William Miller and Sarah Ann White in 1859, but there is no trace of a Sarah Ann Wilkins.
David Parker, Portsmouth
Editor Replies: How strange! Have you ordered the certificates?