View Full Version : Advice Welcomed

05-09-09, 08:03
I posted something about this problem over at familytreeforum (user name, Tanyal, apt title Aaaaaaarrrrrrggggh!), but I thought I'd set the problem out here, both to help clarify my thoughts and also ask for advice.

This is pretty long: hope nobody minds; I want to show how I come to my (possibly incorrect) conclusion.

Months ago I started working on the background of Mary Brook, the woman who married my ancestor George Tickle in 1764 in Hampton Lovett, Worcestershire. I got a photocopy of the entry from the Worcestershire Record Office (one of the few ones allowed) and saw that it mentioned Mary Brook as being of that parish, with Phillip Pumfrey as one of the witnesses.

I bought the transcriptions of St Peter de Witton, Droitwich, Hampton Lovett, and Dodderhill, as well as the MIs of Dodderhill.

I only found one potential baptism in all those transcripts or in the IGI for St Andrews: a baptism of a Mary Brooke, daughter of Edward and Elizabeth, in 1735. The time frame seemed fine, but I wasn't certain.

Then I found a Dodderhill MI: Phillip Pumfrey was listed there, with his wife, his grandson, Phillip Pumfrey and also with John and Mary Brook : John's year of death led to his baptism, but I was still not certain. Then I contacted a woman researching all the Pumfreys in Worcestershire, and she gave me marriage details of Phillip (known as John) Pumfrey to a Mary Brook in 1750; I also found their headstone and with it Mary's approximate date of birth. I then found her baptism: she was, not surprising, the daughter of John and Mary.

More research in the transcripts and the IGI led to a Brook family tree, and I found that that the Mary Brooke baptised in 1735 was part of it. So, I felt fairly confident that I'd found my Mary. I also found several several burials of Brookes that had been resident in St Andrew, Droitwich, so I knew there was a connection between the Brooke family and Hampton Lovett.

Months go by and I search back through different family lines and also forward, working on researching all the descendants of those lines (my cousins) that I could find. Along the way, I find that John Phillips, the descendant of John Allen (my ancestor?) had married a Mary Brooke as well, a submitted entry in 1753 in Bagley (Hagley?), Worcestershire. I noted it down, though I made a notice that it was submitted. Looking through my records, I could find only one Mary Brooke who was yet unassigned to a marriage. Jumping to conclusions, I decided that she was the one. :o

Then, yesterday, I sent for the will of their spinster daughter Sarah (dated to 1794), hoping to get more information on her family, as I've heard spinsters often leave legacies to siblings, nieces and nephews, and so on. It did mention her siblings, but it also mentioned her aunts Elizabeth and Ann Brooke. At first, I was happy: confirmation that her mother was likely Mary Brooke. Then I realised that I didn't have an Elizabeth listed under her grandparent's children. At first I assumed that maybe the baptism was just not recorded, but then I realised another thing. The parents of the Mary baptised in 1735 had had two other daughters, Elizabeth and Ann, and both women were more likely to be alive in 1794 than two women baptised in the 1720s.

So, it seems that the Mary Brooke baptised in 1735 may have married Richard Phillips instead, meaning that I do not have a baptism (and parentage) for my Mary Brook. :(

Months and months wasted. I'm feeling very down at the moment. ;(

Any advice or input welcomed. I've already asked a kind member here to do some will lookups for me and, before all this, I sent away for transcriptions of the MIs of St Peter de Witton, Droitwich, and St Andrew, Droitwich.

(sniffle). ;(

05-09-09, 08:11
Welcome to GF rainbowdragon :)

I've not really taken in your whole story properly as yet, but will read it again this evening (am off out now). I just wanted to say I'm sure you will get some good advice from the members of this site!

05-09-09, 08:14
Welcome to GF rainbowdragon :)

Thanks. :)

05-09-09, 11:19
Do you have the age at death of your Mary (or the other Mary) from the burial?

05-09-09, 11:23
Do you have the age at death of your Mary (or the other Mary) from the burial?

Unfortunately, no: I found the burial of Mary Tickle (nee Brook) (transcriptions) and that of Mary Phillips (nee Brook) (NBI). Neither of them mention their age at death. :(

I've checked the transcription of the first burial and there was no additional information. I'm going to check the transcription of the other when I get to the local library next (I've got the transcriptions on microfiche).

05-09-09, 11:27
That's a shame, because it could have been really helpful! I suppose you should get a look at the actual entry for John Phillips' marriage in case it has more info about Mary, though being as it was just the wrong side of Hardwicke's Marriage Act, it might not.

05-09-09, 11:40
That's a shame, because it could have been really helpful! I suppose you should get a look at the actual entry for John Phillips' marriage in case it has more info about Mary, though being as it was just the wrong side of Hardwicke's Marriage Act, it might not.

Someone on another forum has offered to help: they live closer to the record office than I (not hard, since I live in Australia, the other side of the world.). :D

06-09-09, 07:36
I can only think of things I'm sure you will have already thought of, but I'll say them anyway!

'Of this parish' only means Mary Brook who married in 1764 was living at Hampton Lovett at the time the marriage took place. Though having Phillip Pumphrey as a witness would suggest a possible connection to his family, unless he was a witness on lots of weddings through a connection to the church, or whatever.

Are there any more wills that could help?

Are there any non-conformist records available for the area that might help?

Were any of the marriages by licence? If yes, have any marriage allegations survived?

06-09-09, 08:02
Thanks for the advice Merry. :)

If you don't mind, I'll go into a bit more detail about the Pumfreys.

There are a couple of Phillip Pumfreys around, the father and the son Phillip John (known as John), by this first wife Mary Penrice. A headstone in St Augustine, Dodderhill lists Phillip senior, Mary nee Penrice (it actually mentions her father's name), John and Mary Brook and Phillip's grandson, also named Phillip (the son of John and Mary nee Brooke: I found his baptism on the IGI). Using the ages on the memorial I was able to find the baptisms of John Brook and the younger Phillip Pumfrey on the IGI and (later), found the baptism of John Brook on the transcripts of the Droitwich parish records.

Phillip senior remarried Avis Norris Tickle, the cousin of my George, but in 1765, later than the marriage (Worcestershire Marriage Index).

His son, John (by his first wife), married Mary Brooke in 1750 (Worcestershire Marriage Index). Their memorial also survived, meaning I was able to find her baptism. With the clues from both memorials, I was able to determine her parents were John and Mary.

It was that that led me to believe that my Mary Brook was related to John and Mary.

Anyway, to change the subject: the marriage of George Tickle and Mary Brook was by banns, unfortunately. I don't know about the other marriage as yet: I haven't found it (it was a submitted IGI entry). The Phillips line was a locally prominent family, though: occupations included vinters and surgeons, and a few were recorded as "gentlemen". Apparently they were quite well off, so I'm hoping that the marriage was by license.

Durham Lady has kindly agreed to look up a few Brooke fills for me and I'm hoping those will shed some light on the problem, though I'm a bit pessimistic about it.

17-10-09, 17:19
Well, I'm feeling a lot better. I had the help of a couple of people, including Durham lady.

The Mary Brooke who married John Phillips was the wrong age to me my Mary, but also the wrong age to be the one I originally assigned to that marriage. So, as far as I can tell, the evidence is still strong that the Mary I originally decided was my ancestor is the right one. :)

Unfortunately, I have now two Mary Brookes born around 1731 and only one baptism of a Mary Brooke around that time. The age of one comes from her marriage licence, the age of the other from her tombstone. The latter Mary has what I presume are her parents appearing on the tombstone of her husband's father, so the baptism is most likely to be hers. Which leaves the problem of the other, who was also born in Droitwich but who I don't have a baptism for (sigh).

So, a bit of a groan rather than an Aaaaarrrrgggh. I guess I'll just have to wait until I get some more information to clear this up.

19-10-09, 12:52
This is cold comfort, but if someone marries by licence and you can't find a baptism, that suggests that they might be nonconformist. Unfortunately, records are unlikely to survive from that period relating to nonconformists.

Possible approaches are looking for wills made in the parish you are interested in, looking for manorial records, looking for poor law material. Have you looked to see whether the LDS have any non parish records for the area that you could access by ordering a film? Unfortunately, too, women are only likely to be mentioned if there are no sons.

It is also possible that your Mary could have been working where she married, but her home was five or ten miles away.