England (Counties as in 1851-1901) => England => Gloucestershire => Topic started by: Earlsdau on Thursday 12 March 15 15:36 GMT (UK)

Title: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Thursday 12 March 15 15:36 GMT (UK)
Hello all,

I have a very elusive person who I think is unfindable with the available online BDM resources. Perhaps by searching other records she may be found but I am not in the UK and so do not have the luxury of spending time at the Gloucestershire Records Office or Heritage Offices local to Winchcombe/Ashchurch etc.

She is the mother of the below mentioned George WILTSHIRE. I do not have a surname nor a marriage date for her and Robert WILTSHIRE.

- George WILTSHIRE born c1811, probably in or around Winchcombe, Gloucestershire. - I can find no Baptism date or record for George.
- Died 23/02/1874 aged 62. Buried Winchcombe, Glos.
- The 1851,’61 & '71 Censuses indicate he was born in Winchcombe, Glos.
- Confirmed father - Robert WILTSHIRE 1773-1835. Bapt 21/03/1873 Ashchurch, Glos.
- Non confirmed mother - Hannah UNKNOWN ?-1811. Buried 3/04/1811 Winchcombe, Glos.
- Subsequent (?) Marriage of Robert WILTSHIRE and Rachel DREWETT 29/03/1812 Winchcombe, Glos.

As I see it, if this Hannah is George's mother, he would have had to be born sometime between 24/02/1811 (if his death cert age is correct) and 2/04/1811 (at the latest).

I do not think that Rachel DREWETT is George's mother, although I have no conclusive evidence.

I would appreciate any assistance with this one if possible.....although I'm not very hopeful -  ???

Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Victor Harvey on Saturday 14 March 15 14:48 GMT (UK)
Hi Earlsdau,
Now that the Gloucestershire PRs are on A******y, I checked to see if I could find a baptism for George WILTSHIRE. I then checked the transcriptions on A******y and found Robert WILTSHIRE son of Hannah WILTSHIRE baptised 3rd April 1811. These transcriptions are somewhat suspect, having been transcribed in China, so I decided to check the microfiche record.
Source: Glos Archives (GA) PFC 368 IN 1/5 6, St Peter, Winchcombe, PR:-
3rd April 1811, Hannah, wife of Robert WILTSHIRE, buried.
I could find NO record of a baptism for George WILTSHIRE on the A******y website.
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Sunday 15 March 15 11:48 GMT (UK) gotta be kidding? Well that explains it! I have come across countless errors like burials being called baptisms etc in the 2-3 weeks that these records have been online. Also what hope have our Chinese friends got of knowing old names like Philemon and Zachariah, in fact, I don't think a lot of English speaking transcribers know the old names and therefore can't interpret them well.....

....having said that, the benefit of having the Gloucestershire BDM records online now has almost outweighed the errors 😃 and some areas of my fact finding has advanced significantly. So not complaining really.

Thanks anyway. Your conclusions are my conclusions that the answers are either unable to be found or perhaps are to be found elsewhere.
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Victor Harvey on Sunday 15 March 15 13:03 GMT (UK)
Hi Earlsdau,
Take my advice and only trust the digitalised PRs searched for by individual parishes. These are the actual PRs and can be trusted. The transcribed Chinese records should always be checked against the digitalised records.
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Annette7 on Sunday 15 March 15 13:44 GMT (UK)
Think I may have solved the mystery albeit not the discovery of George's baptism.

From his marriage to Rachel we know that Robert was a widower when they married in 1812.

Robert Wiltshire had served in the 40th. Regt. of Foot (shown as born 1773 Winchcombe (spelt Wenchcome), Glos. and was discharged 4/2/1799 Chelsea, London due to 'left leg poisoned by weeds in St. Vincent).

Just one month later he appears to have married at Chelsea, London:

Transcibed on Ancestry as:

Robert Wilkshire, soldier to Hannah Duret/Durst 6/3/1799 Chelsea, London.

On familysearch Hannah's surname transcribed as Duret, on Ancestry Durst.   However, she actually signed the register and signs as 'Hannah Druitt' and her surname is quite clear.

So, with Hannah's surname Druitt and Rachel's Drewett could they possible be sisters (or maybe cousins)?

Where any children born to Robert and Hannah between 1799 and 1811 occurred I can't say (could have been anywhere) but it does seem extremely likely that Hannah Druitt was his mother and no doubt related somehow to his stepmother Rachel Drewett.  Perhaps the family only returned to Winchcombe ca.1811 with Hannah's impending death - who can say? - so George could have been born anywhere but only thought he was born in Winchcombe since that is where he was raised from a baby.


Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Sunday 15 March 15 15:11 GMT (UK)
Awesome information Annette!

May I ask you your sources so I can check them? The original image of the Winchcombe marriage of Robert WILTSHIRE and Rachel DREWETT in 1812 does not state he was a widower and that is the only one I have seen. Believe me I looked for it on the original hoping it would confirm a previous marriage but there is no comment written there. Hopefully you have seen the Banns original image or another source!

I am indebted to you for all this information as I have been struggling for awhile to make headway here.
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Sunday 15 March 15 15:27 GMT (UK)
My baseline Victor is unless I see an original image/s and the information/data must tie together from usually three other sources/angles I don't accept it or at least hold it at arms length.Wills, census, military, place names, names of subsequent generations etc etc etc. are all part of reaching a conclusion.

Paid researchers I have not found to even be very effective and accurate at times.
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Annette7 on Sunday 15 March 15 20:08 GMT (UK)
Sorry to omit the sources - I was about to go out and wanted to post before I left.

The marriage of Robert and Rachel is on Ancestry and it is the actual copy of the register and clearly states Robert Wiltshire, of this parish, widower and Rachel Drewett, of the same, spinster so don't understand how you say it wasn't there on what you viewed.

The first marriage in Chelsea is also on Ancestry under Robert Wilkshire and Hannah Durst (although original entry clearly shows she signed as Hannah Druitt).

The brief service record for Robert Wiltshire is on FindMyPast.

I've also noted that Rachel Wiltshire didn't die until 1862 and census shows her to have been born in Shiplake, Oxfordshire ca.1778 so one would assume in this instance that probably Hannah Druitt was born in Oxfordshire too.

Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Monday 16 March 15 00:59 GMT (UK)
Again thank you 😅 for the sources and info!

This is the kind of thing that is exciting to find (and it happens frequently in genealogical research) but for this one I must have been too locked in to Gloucestershire and surrounding counties....a good reminder again!

I hadn't seen that marriage record which you had seen. Yes it is quite clear that he was a widower which is what I had suspected. The other records I have found which circle back nicely to Winchcombe. Without that Military record it would have been harder to connect conclusively the correct Robert WILTSHIRE.

Now for some more research into the DREWETT/DRUITT girls/families!
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Vannnie on Monday 10 September 18 23:54 BST (UK)
Hi, just read this thread as I'm also researching George Wiltshire as part of my husband's ancestry that is traced back to his 'brother', Robert Wiltshire (1773-1835).

It does appear that George is the son of Hannah or Rachel Wiltshire in that he appears in the 1841 Census living with Rachel. However in the 1841 Census they failed to show relationships between members of a household. Also, in the 1841 Census they rounded people's ages down to the nearest 5 years so his age of '25' may not be accurate in there (ie could be anything up to age 29). That said, his age in the other Censuses seems to point to a birth year of about 1812 as well.

However, he gets married in 1843 to Jemima and on the Banns his father is stated as Robert Wiltshire, 'labourer'. I know Robert Wiltshire is noted in the baptismal transcripts of his other children as a 'hosier' and 'stocking manufacturer' so it seems curious that George says he's a 'labourer' - but Robert has been deceased at this point for several years, so maybe George didn't know what his father's profession had been?

It is correct that Hannah and Rachel are sisters - sadly Hannah died - I haven't been able to find any record of any children that she and Robert might have had. I wonder if she died in childbirth? Maybe Rachel and Robert took him on as their own or something like that and got married to legitimise his birth? Difficult to know!

We're going to Winchcombe next weekend so I'll see if I can find his grave there - perhaps there's a date of birth or some other clue.

I don't know if any of you are also looking for Robert Wiltshire's father, also Robert Wiltshire I believe. I have his death as 1804, but unsure of his date of birth - the first record I have of him is his marriage to Sarah Miles in 1761 in Winchcombe.
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Tuesday 11 September 18 15:02 BST (UK)

Firstly did you mean father or 'brother’? George also did have a ‘brother’ Robert (1815-1888).

Although any Baptismal records for George have (up to when I researched him) not been available online I believe that George is the son of Hannah and Robert WILTSHIRE, which I will explain in a minute.

Robert and Hannah married in London on 6th March 1799 at St Luke's, Chelsea, London just one month after his discharge from the Military. The marriage is said to be between Robert WILKSHIRE and Hannah DURET however Hannah signed her own name as DRUITT. Because of the similarity of the surnames of Hannah (1st wife) and Rachel (2nd wife) then it seems highly possible that Hannah is the sister of Rachel. Added to that, Rachel DREWETT (bapt 24/11/1782) did have a sister Hannah (bapt 11/02/1781). Also a small point but both girls 'signed' at their marriages.

Interestingly like for George there are no records that I can find for any other children born to them between 1799 and 1811. However, neither are their subsequent records for older siblings of Georges definitely linking them. Of course, by the time of the 1841 census any older siblings would have flown the coop.

We know that Hannah was buried on 3/04/1811. The reason I think that George is Hannah's birth child rather than Rachel’s is because George's death certificate states that when he died on 23/02/1874 he was recorded as being aged 62. Now I know that the age stated on death certs is not always accurate but let's assume for the moment that it is true.

1). If Hannah is not the mother then who is, as it seems likely that George was born between 24/02/1811 and 23/02/1812? If Rachel is the birth mother we know that she and Robert were not married until 29/03/1812. We know that there were illegitimate children born all the time so on that basis it’s entirely possible that George was Rachel's birth child. Yes it is unfortunate that the 1841 census didn't reveal relationships but I suspect that it would have said ‘mother’ anyway, rather than aunt, because in most senses of the word she was his mother from his infancy.

2). We know that Hannah died and was buried in April 1811. On her death record it states that she was 'wife of Robert Wiltshire'. The date of Hannah's death falls right within the timeline of George's birth based on his death certificate. So I suspect that Hannah either died during childbirth or puerperal (postpartum) fever in the days following giving birth to George.

Regardless of whether George was Hannah's child or Rachel's (assuming they were full biological sisters) his genealogy is the same at any rate.
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Vannnie on Tuesday 11 September 18 15:16 BST (UK)
Yes, you're right, my mistake - the Robert Wiltshire I referred to would be George's father, not brother (was late when I wrote that!). I had already traced the fact that Hannah and Robert married in Chelsea as he had been in hospital there with his war injury (thank goodness for military records) and saw the signed name 'Druit' - I've added all those records to my/my husband's tree on I suppose I'm a bit OCD in that I like to know one way or another about who was the father or mother of people in the tree, although George is of no consequence to my research as he's not a direct ancestor of my husbands. Anyway, many thanks for your reply.

I'm still hunting for George's grandfather Robert Wiltshire's definitive birth date - some people have put it down as 1735 but I can't find any records that substantiate that. His burial record says he was from 'Long Wood, Bishops Cleeve' (where my husband comes from.) We hope to find his grave in Winchcombe at the weekend and maybe we will be able to work it out from that, but I've scoured the online church records around and about the Winchcombe/Bishops Cleeve/Ashchurch area and can't find a baptismal record for him. Have you gone back that far with the Wiltshires?
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Tuesday 11 September 18 16:18 BST (UK)
I have reached a bit of a stalemate at that point too. I sometimes wonder if the name Wiltshire indicates they came from that adjoining county and if so when did it happen? Could the Gloucestershire connection have started with Robert WILTSHIRE (circa 1735-1804).

I haven't found any substantiating evidence which proves his birth as being 1735 either. Around that date makes him 26 when he married.....which is a nice age 😁. This needs a lot more scrutiny however.

My biggest problem with the DREWETT family is the supposed parents, William and Mary. Have you ever noticed that the person credited with being the mother of Rachel DREWETT is a Mary PHILLIPS? Have you also ever noticed that there was (when I last researched this at least) only one William DREWETT and a Mary married within a reasonable time frame of Rachel and her siblings being born - 8th May 1774. The good thing or the problem is we know for a fact that Rachel was born in Shiplake, Oxfordshire.

A William and Mary DREWETT from Shiplake had four children

William & Mary DREWETT

William & Mary DREWETT
bapt. 11 Feb 1781

William & Mary DREWETT
bapt 24 Nov 1782

William & Mary DREWETT

Now compare this to the children of William and Mary DREWETT (neé PHILLIPS) whom we know lived in Winchcombe or who lived there for at least some of the time. If you compare the names and dates of baptisms of the above and then to the Winchcombe born's totally crazy and mixed up. They overlap and W'm and Mary would be rushing from Shiplake to Winchcombe back and forth......and children were being baptised in both places - twice (if they are the same family).

I have all this documented but am away from home at the moment so can't access the names just now.

Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Vannnie on Wednesday 12 September 18 00:16 BST (UK)
I think there are several, or at least 2, William and Mary Drewett/Druit/Druet families and that it's likely that the ones who were married in Winchcombe weren't the ones who were the parents of Hannah and her siblings. I expect they were related (I've got several people in my family up in Durham who had the same names and sometimes lived in the same village - gets really confusing).

Looking on, there are distinctions in how the surname is spelled, although it's no indication of any of them being part of the same family as a lot of surnames were written phonetically, as we know, back then.

So I don't think it was a case of the same family rushing back and forth between Shiplake and Winchcombe, although I can't actually find a William and Mary being married or living there in 1841.

I looked for a Henry Drewett, being as there was one from Winchcombe and one from Shiplake and found 2 in the 1841 Census, both in the London area and about the same age, so there must be more than one Henry D (I tried various spellings of the surname and got the same results each time). This leads me to believe that they are definitely 2 different people, so presumably 2 different families. I expect the name has other variations too - I think my husband found one spelled as 'Duwell' or something which turned out to be a Druet.

I have drawn a blank trying to find another marriage of a William and Mary Drewett/Druitt/Druet in a likely place, other than the one in Winchcombe. It's possible that the records have been destroyed or are illegible of course - that annoying scenario has come up with some of my own relatives when I know for sure that there was a marriage or whatever that had taken place. So just because we can't find the records, doesn't mean it never happened. However, I hate these loose ends... gave me:

In Winchcombe:

Lydia Drewett baptised on 16/3/1775

Thomas Phillips Druet baptised on 4/4/1777 (undoubtedly the son of Mary Phillips and William Druet)

Henry Druet baptised on 1/11/1778

Lydia Druit baptised on 14/4/ 1781

Henry Druit baptised on 13/10/1782

William Druet baptised on 9/4/1785

Lydia Druit baptised on 25/11/1787 - buried 3/12/1787 (I found this by looking through the written transcripts as it seemed likely - didn't come up as a record when searching - presumably it's the same Lydia)

Charles Druit baptised on 27/8/1790

Then we have the records from the Shiplake, Oxfordshire transcripts that you have mentioned. It is all very strange.

I haven't gone through the actual transcripts though to see if maybe another Lydia had died, but it's possible that 2 different families chose the same name - it happened a lot with my ancestors - must've been confusing at school!

Anyway, as it's late I must stop now - but it is frustrating when you can't find out the answers!
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Wednesday 12 September 18 08:14 BST (UK)
It is the only conclusion I can draw despite the lack of evidence.....that there were two couples named William and Mary DREWETT. Both first names being common of course. It makes it excruciatingly hard when there are couples of the same name, same age group, same village/area etc.

 When I said that Mary PHILLIPS is credited with being the mother of Rachel, I mean by others namely on certain website trees. Because of the children and baptism dilemma I have never been comfortable to espouse that theory.

In 2015 I received the following response from a researcher in regard to this matter.

“......I have also searched  both the Oxon. and N. Berks, marriage indexes for a marriage of their parents, William and Mary in order to determine her maiden name, but have failed to find this in either index.  I have also checked the Standlake register for any sign of banns being read there for such a marriage but found none. It would seem that they either never married, or else did so outside the county.

For interest, I have added DREWETT to the family migration map (address below). This appears to show that the DREWETT in the Shiplake/Henley area were incomers, appearing in 1789 with Henry's baptism, which strengthens the view that his parents married elsewhere.”

Spelling variants included in this search (most frequent first) are:

Another researcher I employed on this same paradox concluded that she couldn't find them and agreed with me that the baptism dates of the children of the Shiplake and Winchcombe couples (as I outlined last night) was untenable if they were one and the same.

Perhaps the parents of Rachel and indeed Hannah (if Hannah is the mother of George) will remain a mystery which is unsolvable.

There was something else I wanted to mention but have forgotten it amidst my angst of Will and Mary!!
Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Vannnie on Wednesday 12 September 18 10:02 BST (UK)
I agree with your conclusion and thank you for the extra information provided. As I mentioned before, there was yet another 'alternate' spelling of the surname involving 'L's being mistranscribed as 'T's - probably many more.

I do find it frustrating when people make assumptions about links and/or copy things from other people's trees but it does mean that there are dead-ends.

For my own family, my father was Swiss and there's not a lot of information available on the internet to follow that line back very far, although I have made some progress. My DNA shows that I've got some strong links with people in the US, 3rd-5th cousins, but so far am unable to find the connection!

Anyway, for now I'll continue with my husband's line as we're meeting up with his 4th cousin twice removed on Sunday, which will be fun!

Btw, I couldn't see the family migration map address that you refer to...

Title: Re: Elusive Hannah Wiltshire
Post by: Earlsdau on Wednesday 12 September 18 11:51 BST (UK)
You said: 'Btw, I couldn't see the family migration map address that you refer to...'

Sorry that comment was written by the researcher and was a time limited link. I should have deleted the (address below) comment!

I hope you enjoy meeting up with your husband's fourth cousin twice removed!