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I just have a profession-that's all!

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alex Report 11 Oct 2013 20:13

Thanks for that Jude and Patin

Gosh-am getting very disheartened at finding out about Grandad.

It did say on Mum's marriage certificate that he was "produce merchant and ex army"but I don't suppose that will help me any?


PatinCyprus Report 10 Oct 2013 09:24

Electoral Rolls don't always show who's there and who's not as I found out tracking OH's family.

My OH's grandmother was widowed in WW1 in 1918. In 1918, 1919 and 1920 her dead husband appeared on the electoral roll with her. In 1920 she married again and moved into her new husband's house. Her new husband name was on the electoral until 1926. This husband died in 1922 and she remarried and her new husband moved in with her in 1924 and he was on the roll from 1924 so her name her new and dead husbands appeared together for 2 years.

She did not own any property ever and even though women weren't universally allowed to vote in UK until 1928 her name is on the electoral roll.


HeyJudeB4Beatles Report 9 Oct 2013 18:25

Electoral rolls will only show those in the household who were eligible to vote. So before 1928 only women over the age of thirty who owned a property were allowed to vote.

In 1928 all women over 21 irrespective of property qualifications were able to vote.

For men, all men over 21 were able to vote from 1918.

Not many electoral roles are online - you may need to go to your local library but if your mum was born elsewhere you will need a library local to there.

As Flip says, when researching the father you must take the information provided at registration by the mother with the proverbial pinch of salt. It was not unusual for a married woman to register children in her husband's name (as father) even when he was patently not the father or sometimes long deceased!



alex Report 9 Oct 2013 07:49

Thanks for that, Flip-you are a brilliant researcher!
I guess I can look online at the electoral role? I have the address of where Mum was born so I can start in that area. I also thought I would get Mum's sister and brother's birth certificates to see if there are any clues there.


Flip Report 8 Oct 2013 21:49

So can we go back to basics - where & when did you last have proof he existed?

And don't go by his children's births as any marred woman would record her husband as the father even if he had long gone! I've found this in my family (as have others) so know it's true - children being born 10 years after the death of the alleged father!

All I can really suggest are the electoral rolls, which are only searchable locally and by address - but they should show if he was there and when he finally "disappeared". You really can't rely on the 1928 son's birth to show he was still there with the family - he may have been long gone.

That is, unless you know more from your family history of course!


alex Report 7 Oct 2013 21:27

Good try root gatherer but William's step father died between 1915-17. However, it could be to do with not allowing any connection to be made to the real father.


rootgatherer Report 7 Oct 2013 21:06

I have a similar birth on my tree. The child was born to a single mother in 1913. and no father named on the registration. She married in 1917 and in 1939 her son's birth was re-registered by her husband. I wondered if this was done to give him the same rights to inherit as his "half" siblings in the event of his father / stepfather's death.


alex Report 7 Oct 2013 19:43

Well sadly, flip, I have no information past his marriage to my Grandmother which is recorded in the thread and the fact that his youngest son was born in 1928. Then I have no info.
I have a feeling that Great Uncle Nathan was connected to Canada but I'm not sure if that's true, or indeed relevant.


Flip Report 7 Oct 2013 19:20

It's very much guess work as to why his 70-odd year old mother would re-register his birth in 1937. Wonder if Pat got it in one, the stigma of her having an illegitame son, and she didn't want to own up to her own son. Maybe if he needed his birth certificate for some reason she got a re-registered copy for him?

Wonder if he went abroad, therefore needed a passport and so needed a birth certificate? Maybe more likely than prison.

I can't remember all the details of the thread, and it's quite long, but am I right in assuming you haven't found his death? When did you lose touch with him in Urmston?


alex Report 7 Oct 2013 18:13

Hi Flip and others

Well the re-registered certificate is here. It was re-registered by William's mother,Elizabeth. Sh was residing at 2 Greenway Road,Timperley,Cheshire.
It has James Owen as the father.
It is strange why she did it. Could it be to do with the REAL (unknown) father's death? Elizabeth had moved away so I cannot think it was the stigma otherwise she would have done it sooner. The only other reason I can think of was it happened after William's death(I don't know when he died) to possibly clean up history!
Can I ask someone this...What if my Grandfather,William Owen went to prison. It fits in with my Mum never having contact and the shame would have told on her (as she battled all her life with some unknown demons). Also no one spoke of William's whereabouts. Can I find out from somewhere? He would have been living at Urmston when we lost touch.


PatinCyprus Report 15 Sep 2013 14:09

Perhaps it was just about the stigma of being illegitimate. He could have had a hard time at school etc if they knew about it, or he may have dreaded someone finding out about his birth. It may also have been about his mother being stigmatised.

It had to be paid for so it must have been important to someone.


Flip Report 15 Sep 2013 13:55

But why, he was 45 years old and his "father" long dead. What possible reason could there be? Did he need a passport, did he need to prove a will - doesn't look like it from the records?

Just throwing this out as something to think about!


PatinCyprus Report 15 Sep 2013 13:34

Found these for you

The reregistration was to legitimise him.


PatinCyprus Report 15 Sep 2013 08:20

Isn't the Legitimacy Act the act that states a child whose parents married after the child's birth can be reregistered as legitimate? This would explain why they reregistered him.

Doesn't prove he was the father just that he took the responsibility for him.


Flip Report 14 Sep 2013 19:55

OK, will watch for your post!!

Family secrets, oh what they did to confuse us!


alex Report 14 Sep 2013 16:50

I don't know . The certificate I have says a boy,William was born to Elizabeth Boardman. No father named. Then it has the bit written in to say re registered in 1937 under the legitimacy act. I am assuming this is the original and I hope I have just ordered the re registered version which has William as William Boardman Owen. I will let you know


Flip Report 13 Sep 2013 21:46

Alex, who had him re-registered?? You say "she" had him re-registered, I thought he must have done it himself!


alex Report 13 Sep 2013 20:18

Sadly Flip, I have nothing else. It was all hush hush from my mum. I just wish I had asked her about her Dad when she was alive.
I will forever wonder why she had him re-registered too.
Maybe the real Dad died and my Great Granny wanted the name of Owen put on the certificate so there would be no questions asked. Maybe even the real Dad did not know he had a son.
I wait for the re-registered version to see if it will shed any light on this.

Thank for trying to solve my puzzle!


Alemap Report 13 Sep 2013 08:55

For info.

The link to James Owen and Elizabeth Ann Boardman's marriage in the parish records. Address: 66 Abbey Hey Lane.


Flip Report 13 Sep 2013 06:22

Well, as there is no father named I think that secret has gone to the grave with Elizabeth. I just wonder why he was re-registered, there must have been a reason but I can't think of one that makes any sense. I have 2 ancestors in my tree, of a similar age to William, who were born before their mothers married and registered in her name, but then took on the husband's name - neither were ever re-registered.

Do you have any idea whether William stayed in the Urmston area, or any idea of when approx he died?