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Topics - Deer243

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World War One / Matching medal index card to individual
« on: Wednesday 17 April 19 23:03 BST (UK)  »
I have been keen to find out for some time what (if anything) my Gt Grandfather was doing during WW1 with the main problem being that his service record (if it existed) to have been one of those burnt and lost.

His name was Charles Henry Dillon (1886-1951), born and died in Manchester. He worked as a shipping clerk.

Fortunately a C H Dillon is listed as working for a coal merchant in Manchester City Battalions Roll of Honour (published 1916), it seems likely this is the right man.

He is listed as having attested under the group scheme. Charles was single and being born in 1886 means that he would have been in group 12 of the scheme (I think). I cannot find any service records to match him. I can see 13 medal index cards in the name of a "Charles Dillon" which I cannot rule out and could be for "my" Charles.

It seems likely to me that as Charles was in the group attestation scheme that he would have served in WW1, albeit later on when the conscription rules were changed. Therefore, it seems likely that one of these 13 index cards is the right one.

Would anyone be able to help with trying to match up my Charles Dillon with an index card or other form of record to show what he might have been doing in WW1?

Lancashire / St. Joseph's Cemetery Moston (Manchester) Photo Request
« on: Tuesday 13 February 18 19:37 GMT (UK)  »
I live in northern Scotland but am very keen to see a photograph of my Gt Gt Grandfather's grave at St. Joseph's Cemetery Moston (Manchester). If someone in the area or who is visiting perhaps would be kind enough to take a photo I would be very grateful.

His name was Charles Dillon (1858-1933) and his grave is "St Teresa 1214".

Free Photo Restoration & Date Old Photographs / Flattening a warped hard backed photo?
« on: Thursday 28 December 17 10:50 GMT (UK)  »
I have an old hard backed photo from circa 1914 which has warped quite badly and woul;d be interested to get some tips on how to flatten it. I am inclined to use some heavy books on top but am worried that this might just crack or break to hard backing?

The Common Room / Help Finding Francis Dillon
« on: Wednesday 26 July 17 22:46 BST (UK)  »
I'm not much use at tracing lines down from after the 1911 census to the present day or at least getting more recent then 1911. My Great Grandfather had a half-brother (after his Father's second marriage) called Francis Dillon and I would be very interested to know if he has any descendants and basically what became of him.

Francis (also known as Frank) was born in around 1902 based on the 1911 census as I have not got his birth cert as I'm doubtful it would help trace him in more recent times. In 1911 he lived at 7, Poppythorn Lane, Prestwich, Lancashire with his parents Charles Henry Dillon and Catherine    McGovern.

If anyone could help me find any more recent records of Francis or any descendants I would be very grateful.

The Common Room / Any MyHeritage Premium Free Trials
« on: Wednesday 12 April 17 17:18 BST (UK)  »
I've come across some matches on my Irish branches to people with trees at MyHeritage, unfortunately, I can't get in touch with them or see much of their trees without a subscription. I'm not particularly impressed with what MyHeritage offer (other than the chance to get in touch with these matches) and would have to take out an annual subscription (no monthly option). MyHeritage don't offer much at all in the way of records compared to FindMyPast or Ancestry so I'm hoping someone might know of a free trial offer for MyHeritage perhaps?

The Lighter Side / A Frustrating Situation!
« on: Monday 13 February 17 23:35 GMT (UK)  »
I made quite a successful find this morning when searching the Greater Manchester Lives archive catalogue when I came across a record for what was described as an essay by a "W. Dillon" about his childhood in Chorlton-on-Medlock, an area of Manchester. This is the area of Manchester that my Dillons were living in and I have a couple of William Dillons in my tree so I sent an email off to the archive asking if I could pay for a copy to be scanned over on the off chance that it was a relative who wrote it.

Frustratingly, they replied that the memoirs were submitted to the archive with no documentation or conditions attached and so they have to assume that under copyright they cannot produce copies of it! The archivist was quite helpful though and gave me some snippets of info about the author from what she read of the memoirs which gave me enough info to be certain of who the author was. The author was a Grandson of my first Dillon to move to Manchester from Ireland. The archivist also said that part of the memoir does discuss his family, at least his immediate family.

So all in all quite a frustrating situation, particularly when I live at the opposite end of the country to Manchester!

The Common Room / Possibly the Most Puzzling Mystery in my Tree
« on: Monday 14 November 16 12:12 GMT (UK)  »
The puzzle is about my 3X Gt Grandparents who seem to have been called Dawson Howard (about 1841-1902) and Mary Spiller (b. about 1848), although as I’ll explain later there is some uncertainty regarding their names.

According to family stories Dawson was a son or descended in some way from the Baron Howards of Glossop but that Dawson and Mary Spiller were sent away from his home in Ireland after some misdemeanour and were sent to Manchester with Dawson receiving an allowance every quarter to keep him quiet. Mary was apparently a kitchen maid in Dawson’s family’s home.

Apparently, whenever Dawson had money from his allowance he would be away from his wife but would come back as soon as his money ran out. Following another misdemeanor by Dawson his allowance was cut off by his family but they apparently reconciled some years later and the allowance was restarted. Once the allowance was restarted Dawson went down to London and nothing was heard of him for several months until the money ran out and he returned to Manchester.

To go back to the business of names although Dawson usually gave his name as “Dawson Howard” his name has been given as “John D Howard” and one relative thought that Dawson Howard may have been a double barrelled surname.

As for Mary Spillers name, she usually gave her name on records as Mary McNally but was buried as Mary Spiller (definitely the same person from my research). This may be explained by a family story that the McNally’s of Richhill, Co. Armagh took in a little girl who had no family but who later came to England. I suspect that Mary was a Spiller by birth but used the McNally name after they took her in.

Unfortunately, the information that I have from relatives is quite patchy, my Grandmother had mentioned in the past that there was a Lady (the titled sort) on her side somewhere although I had not bothered to look into this before. The final bit of information from my relatives is even less clear, apparently Dawson’s daughter (my 2XGt Grandmother) Annie May Howard’s name came from a Danish princess and there was some sort of link to the Prince of Wales. I have no idea what to make of this last bit.

I have of course done my own research to see whether there is any truth in these stories.
According to census records Dawson was born in Ireland in about 1841 and was Church of Ireland. Mary was born in about 1848 and according to relatives was from Richhill in Armagh, Northern Ireland.

The earliest record I can find for Dawson is the 1871 census when he appears to have been living as a boarder in a house in Prescot. His next mention in the records is in the St Anne’s RC Church, Ancoats, Manchester baptism records when a son called William Dawson Howard was born in 1873 was born to Dawson and Mary. Then in 1874 my 2X Gt Grandmother Ann Mary Howard was born.

According to newspaper and quarter session records in April 1875 Dawson was drunk and stabbed a man. As a result of this Dawson was sentenced to 12 months of hard labour. Unfortunately though, I have been unable to find a prison record for him. Then in 1877 another son called John D Howard was born to Dawson and Mary.

Dawson does appears in the Manchester rates book periodically as renting a house.

At the time of the 1881 census though things must have gone downhill since he is recorded in the Manchester Workhouse as a “pauper inmate”. This 1881 census is the only one where I’ve been able to find Dawsons (claimed) wife living with him. I have been unable to find any marriage for Mary Spiller and Dawson (or looking under other possible names).

In 1883 Dawson and Mary had a second daughter called Martha. This makes a total of four children, two sons and two daughters. However, if Dawson was sent away from Ireland because of some involvement with Mary perhaps there was an earlier child that I don’t know about?

Dawson next appears on the 1891 census as a boarder living at Buckley Street in Manchester. Interestingly, I think that the 1891 census is the only record I have found where he describes himself as single (rather than married) although Mary was still alive. In 1891 Dawson was working as a night watchman according to the census.

The final records that I have found for Dawson (other than his death cert) are religious creed registers from the New Bridge Street Workhouse in Manchester. Dawson stated his religion as “Church” and was first admitted on 3rd July 1900 and then discharged on 9th March 1901. On 3rd June 1901 though he was admitted again before being “discharged or death” on 10th August 1902.

Dawson died in 1902 in the workhouse and was buried in the paupers graveyard.

I don’t know how to make any progress with this puzzle, I feel that I have exhausted all the FindMyPast records for England and I have looked for Irish records as well.

As for the reliability of the story I think that there is at least some truth in it given the level of detail and this story seems to have been around since at least when my Grandmother was a child since she remembers her Grandmother (Dawson's daughter) telling her. However, I don’t see how Dawson would be related to the Howards of Glossop (Glossop is East of Manchester) if he was born in Ireland.

Any advice would be really appreciated!

Ireland / Anyone here with Dillons from Mayo or Galway, Roscommon or Sligo?
« on: Thursday 09 June 16 19:59 BST (UK)  »
I've recently managed to find a census return where one of my Dillons actually gave a more detailed place of birth than just "Ireland". The place of birth was described as "County Mayo, Ireland" and so I mentioned Galway, Roscommon or Sligo in the title just to be comprehensive since it is always possible that my Dillons were living on the border of Mayo and might have lived in one of the adjacent counties at some time.

I'm not after any lookups or anything like that just to hopefully find some other researchers with Mayo Dillons so that we might exchange information.

I have done a search of Rootschat with no luck but though it was worth asking anyway.

The Common Room / More Dillons that disappear into thin air
« on: Thursday 02 June 16 15:09 BST (UK)  »
I've got another Dillon woman which seems to be related to my lot but as in previous cases seems to disappear as suddenly as she appeared on the records.

I first noticed a Bridget Dillon on a baptism record (a transcription CD from the MLFHS) where she was shown as being the Wife of a Thomas Brien and the Mother of Thomas born in 1848. The Godparents to the baptism were a Robert and Sarah Dillon.

There is a Robert and Sarah Dillon that I have come across before whom I believe to be related to my lot and since there is only one couple called Robert and Sarah Dillon in the 1841 and 1851 censuses in Manchester I have assumed that the Robert and Sarah on the baptism record are the same same people which would suggest that Bridget is a relative.

I then tried to find Bridget, her Husband and son in census returns but with very little luck. The only census return I have been able to find is in 1851 (HO107; Piece: 2230; Folio: 332; Page: 46) and the address on this return matches up with Bridget and Thomas's marriage certificate. Their son is not shown in 1851 but looking at the death indexes it appears that he died in 1850. Bridget and Thomas are shown as being from Ireland.

The marriage certificate of 1845 gives Thomas's age as 27 and Bridget's as 25. Thomas is described as a labourer and Bridget as a hawker with both living on New Mount Street at the time of the marriage. Bridget was the son of William Dillon and Thomas was the son of a Thomas O'Brien, both Fathers are described as labourers.

These are the only records that I can find of Bridget Dillon, I had hoped that I might find something linking Bridget to other Dillons to try and break through my 1800 brick wall.

If any one has any ideas it would be really helpful.

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