Struggling with my WRIGHT ancestors

17 May

After yesterday’s marathon family history session I have taken it easy today, in fact I didn’t really get started until the afternoon. So this afternoon I have been focusing on my WRIGHT ancestors.

One of my remaining gaps from my challenge to find all my 3x great grandparents was the missing maiden name for Sarah the wife Henry WRIGHT, who were the parents of Harriet WRIGHT who later became Harriet MITCHELL when she married William Henry MITCHELL in Exton, Hampshire in 1860.

The problem is that I don’t know where to start looking for the marriage of Henry and Sarah. They surface in Alton, Hampshire from around 1841, although I have not been able to find a 1841 census entry for them anywhere, let alone Alton or Hampshire. By 1841 they should have had at least two children and possibly three.

According to the 1851 census the first child (Mary A.) would have been born around 1836, and the second (Harriet) around 1840. The 1851 census gives the place of birth for both of them as Ospringe, Kent, which is the same as that for Henry (he would have been born around 1811).

Henry’s wife Sarah (her GRO death index entry has her name as Sarah Ann) was ten years younger than him (born around 1821) and her place of birth differs in every census. It could be Harrow, Middlesex (1851), Alton, Hampshire (1861), Lincolnshire (1871), Deptford, Kent (1881) or none of the above!

Doing the maths it looks like Sarah was very young when she had her first child, maybe as young as fifteen or sixteen, so perhaps the marriage didn’t occur until some time later, after or as a result of that first child. Maybe it explains why they moved such a great distance from Kent to Hampshire. Unless of course someone was lying about their age.

So I really am clutching at straws, the marriage (if there was one) would probably have taken place before civil registration and the place of marriage could have been just about anywhere, especially if it was in the bride’s parish.

My only hope seems to be the parish registers for Ospringe, Kent although that seems a bit of a long shot, hopefully I should be able to find out more about Henry’s ancestors even if I don’t find a marriage record or baptism records for his children there. I suspect there is a can of worms contained there, just waiting to opened!

2 Responses to “Struggling with my WRIGHT ancestors”

  1. Alex May 18, 2009 at 6:31 am #

    I assume you haven’t been able to locate a civil birth registration for Harriet, or any younger siblings? The birth certificate should have mother Sarah’s maiden name on it.

  2. wanderinggenealogist May 18, 2009 at 8:50 pm #

    Great idea Alex. I have only just picked up on this particular line and started to try and move back, so I haven’t done much work on it yet, but I do have a birth index entries for a couple of the later children so I will put in a request for the certificate for one of these and see what comes back.

    I am now thinking that Harriet and her younger sister may have been registered under the surname ELLIOTT, but that is just a hunch with very little evidence to back it up at this stage.

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