So far my research into the parents of Ellen NICHOLLS (my 3x great-grandmother) has provided a contrasting picture of the families of her parents. The contrast stems from the fact that I know a lot about her mother’s side of the family (DRAPPER) and almost nothing about her father’s side of the family (NICHOLLS).
Almost everything I know is about the DRAPPER family. Starting with the marriage of Thomas NICHOLLS and Martha DRAPPER in 1840 where both of the witnesses were DRAPPERs. In the 1841 census Thomas and Martha are living with the DRAPPERs (her father and siblings). After the death of Thomas (before 1851), Martha and the two children are living with various DRAPPER families.
All I know about the NICHOLLS family is that Thomas’ father was James. I don’t know the name of Thomas’ mother or have the names of any of his siblings. This obviously poses a major problem as I am not even sure when and where Thomas was born.
It would be easy for me to jump to conclusions and assume that there was some sort of division between the families, but in reality it is almost certainly down to a lack of data, and the fact that all these events (marriage and census) only provide us with a snapshot of their lives. I have no idea what else was going on between these events.
The good news is that I think I might have a lead on Thomas’ parents, the problem is that at the moment I don’t see any way of proving the connection, but you never know something may present itself as I keep on digging.