Author Topic: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?  (Read 4279 times)

Offline LizzieL

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Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« on: Thursday 01 September 16 14:24 BST (UK) »
The only evidence I have for the maiden surname of my 3 x great grandmother is a Banns record and marriage record. All children born before 1837, so no birth certificates to check maiden surname on. She was married in 1817 at the age of 21 as a spinster. She was married in a village about 20 miles from where she was born, she may not have lived there long and not be known there. Neither she nor her husband were literate. Only one set of banns as her husband was resident in same parish.
So is it possible the vicar could have misheard her surname when she and her husband came to arrange the marriage, and thought he heard a similar sounding and more common surname ? After recording the banns, he would be unlikely to ask again what the surname was and just copy the same information to the marriage register. After the ceremony she and her husband would just sign with an X. The witnesses (unrelated) would sign to say that they had seen a marriage take place, they may not check the record or even know her surname, if friends of the groom.
Would anyone query the record after the event? I doubt the record would be looked at apart from whoever makes the transcript for the bishop, and they wouldn't check the content only that they had correctly copied what was written.

Any opinions?
Berks / Oxon: Eltham, Annetts, Wiltshire (surname not county), Hawkins, Pembroke, Partridge
Dorset / Hants: Derham, Stride, Purkiss, Scott, Sibley
Yorkshire: Pottage, Carr, Blackburn, Depledge
Sussex: Goodyer, Christopher, Trevatt
Jersey: Fowler, Huelin, Scott

Offline groom

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Re: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« Reply #1 on: Thursday 01 September 16 14:36 BST (UK) »
Sounds feasible to me, if neither couple could read or write they wouldn't know the name was wrong. As it was before registration were they even given a copy of what was entered into the parish register?
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Offline iolaus

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Re: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« Reply #2 on: Thursday 01 September 16 14:43 BST (UK) »
As my greatgrandMOTHER ended up being registered as HENRY 2 days after being baptised as EMILY (picture the names in broad Somerset accents) definitely possible.  Again her mother made her mark so couldn't check to say 'hang on thats wrong'

Offline PrawnCocktail

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Re: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« Reply #3 on: Thursday 01 September 16 14:47 BST (UK) »
How far wrong was it? The vicar would have had to read it out three Sundays running - you'd have thought the groom would have picked it up - unless he didn't bother to go and hear the banns read (or didn't like to correct the vicar, and didn't think it would matter!)
Website: http://freepages.rootsweb.com/~towcesterfamilies/genealogy/
Towcester - anything, any time
Cheshire - Lambert, Houghland, Birtwisle
Liverpool - Platt, Cunningham, Ditton
London - Notley, Elsom, Billett
Oxfordshire - Hitchcock, Smith, Leonard, Taunt
Durham - Hepburn, Eltringham
Berwickshire - Guthrie, Crawford
Somerset - Taylor (Bath)
Gloucestershire - Verrinder, Colborn
Dorset - Westlake


Offline LizzieL

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Re: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« Reply #4 on: Thursday 01 September 16 15:25 BST (UK) »
The name is recorded as Freeman, but I cannot find a Sarah Freeman with the correct birth year and place, but I can find a Sarah Leeming which is a good match. Sarah married William Carr. In the 1851 their son John Carr and his family have a William Leeming staying with them. He is described as cousin. I have been in touch with someone who has done a study of the Leemings around Ripon, and confirmed that this William is the illegitimate son of Jane Leeming. Jane's sister Sarah is the one that fits birth year and birth place (from censuses) of my Sarah.
Apart from baptism of Sarah Leeming I can find no further information, she seems to disappear.

I started a thread on this a couple of years ago, but have since found a scan of parish register not just BT on line and tried to eliminate Sarah Leeming, but she still can't be found apart from a baptism.

http://www.rootschat.com/forum/index.php?topic=672657.msg5487701#msg5487701

Berks / Oxon: Eltham, Annetts, Wiltshire (surname not county), Hawkins, Pembroke, Partridge
Dorset / Hants: Derham, Stride, Purkiss, Scott, Sibley
Yorkshire: Pottage, Carr, Blackburn, Depledge
Sussex: Goodyer, Christopher, Trevatt
Jersey: Fowler, Huelin, Scott

Offline PrawnCocktail

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Re: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« Reply #5 on: Thursday 01 September 16 15:39 BST (UK) »
That sounds good enough - they'd hear the "eem" and hear what they expected to hear!

 ;D
Website: http://freepages.rootsweb.com/~towcesterfamilies/genealogy/
Towcester - anything, any time
Cheshire - Lambert, Houghland, Birtwisle
Liverpool - Platt, Cunningham, Ditton
London - Notley, Elsom, Billett
Oxfordshire - Hitchcock, Smith, Leonard, Taunt
Durham - Hepburn, Eltringham
Berwickshire - Guthrie, Crawford
Somerset - Taylor (Bath)
Gloucestershire - Verrinder, Colborn
Dorset - Westlake

Offline pharmaT

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Re: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« Reply #6 on: Thursday 01 September 16 16:50 BST (UK) »
My maiden name was spelt spectacularly wrong on my daughter's birth certificate when they showed me for the final check before saving.  So I would expect it would be perfectly possible for someone's name to be wrong if they did not have sufficient literacy skills to check.
Campbell, Dunn, Dickson, Fell, Forest, Norie, Pratt, Somerville, Thompson, Tyler among others

Offline panda40

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Re: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« Reply #7 on: Thursday 01 September 16 17:42 BST (UK) »
My husband's father got married with the surname he had been always known by. On the morning of his marriage his mother informed him of his actual surname. He had been brought up with the surname of her husband who she had married when he was five. He got married under the surname he had been using and we are all know by the wrong surname. We should by Mcload's curtesy of the postman she met when she was 16.
Chapman. Kent/Liverpool 1900+
Linnett.Kent/liverpool 1900+
Button. Kent
Sawyer. Kent
Swain. Kent
Austin/en. Kent
Ellen. Kent
Harman. Kent/ norfolk

Offline Andrew Tarr

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Re: Could a woman get married with the wrong surname by accident and never know?
« Reply #8 on: Thursday 01 September 16 18:23 BST (UK) »
What do you mean by 'wrong'?  Two hundred years ago only 'educated' people could write or had much idea of standard spellings.  In rural areas the 'right' name for anything was just the accepted pronunciation of it.  Gradually the clerics established some regularity, but there were all sorts of variants, many of which are still around.  One example is from Yorkshire: Birkenshaw, which surfaces as Brokenshire, for example.  Two other oddities come to mind, Woosnam (from Wolstenholme) and Smurfit (from Smirthwaite).

I have already posted about my g-g-g-father Henry Piercy's marriage as Pearson, in Manchester in 1806.  I suppose it may have been someone else, but supporting evidence is so strong I don't believe so.
Tarr, Tydeman, Liversidge, Bartlett, Young