Author Topic: Illegitimate babies and finding fathers- where to being or when to give up?!  (Read 932 times)

Offline Rebaby

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Hi everyone. I'm pretty new to roots chat and to genealogy in general, so I'm hoping you might be able to either point me in the right direction or tell me if I'm wasting my time!

My Grandma was born 'out of wedlock' in 1939 and so far as any of us in the family knows, her mother never revealed the identity of the father to anyone. All we know is that she was in service at the time, possibly in a house in Scotland, but returned home to Lancashire to have the baby.

Do I have any hope of uncovering who her biological father was, and if so where would be a good place to start?

Many thanks in advance!  :)

Offline clayton bradley

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Re: Illegitimate babies and finding fathers- where to being or when to give up?!
« Reply #1 on: Friday 09 November 18 14:04 GMT (UK) »
Many people these days use autosomal DNA to narrow down the possibilities and there are Facebook pages specifically offering help for this situation. Good Luck, cb
Broadley (Lancs all dates and Halifax bef 1654)

Offline trystan

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Re: Illegitimate babies and finding fathers- where to being or when to give up?!
« Reply #2 on: Friday 09 November 18 14:10 GMT (UK) »
Rebaby,

Does the family know which house she was in service at the time, or have some sort of idea where it might be?

The census that she would have been in (if she was in Scotland) would have been the 1931 census (but you'll have to wait another 14 years or so to access it probably).

Your great-grandmother may have received a letter reference for her next employer from the house that she was in service.

Trystan
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Offline Rosinish

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Re: Illegitimate babies and finding fathers- where to being or when to give up?!
« Reply #3 on: Friday 09 November 18 14:35 GMT (UK) »
Welcome to Rootschat  ;)

Did your g/mother have a middle name as often that's a clue to the father?

Do you have any idea which part of Scotland she was living?

Were any stories passed down about events (in Scotland) while she was there which could help identify where?

Maybe the marriage of a friend or such like?

Annie
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Offline familydar

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Re: Illegitimate babies and finding fathers- where to being or when to give up?!
« Reply #4 on: Friday 09 November 18 19:25 GMT (UK) »
welcome to rootschat Rebaby.

The year makes me think of the 1939 register.  If gm was born before it was taken and her exact birth date is known then she may be appear on it with her mum.  If born after then her mother, your ggm, might be on it and her address may yield some clues.  Not sure if 1939 register extended to Scotland though so this may be a non-starter.

Jane :-)
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Offline Josephine

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Re: Illegitimate babies and finding fathers- where to being or when to give up?!
« Reply #5 on: Friday 09 November 18 19:28 GMT (UK) »
Hi, Rebaby:

Have you inquired with any cousins who might have been told something by their parents (your grandmother's siblings, assuming she had any)? In my family, sometimes cousins (and their children) knew about secrets that were hidden from my direct ancestors.

Have you seen your grandmother's birth record, in case it named her father?

Was your grandmother baptized? If yes, her baptismal record might contain a father's name (and it might not).

Have you checked your grandmother's marriage record, to see if a father's name was given?

Have you checked the local newspapers in case your great-grandmother sued someone for child support? (It's a long shot but worth checking.)

Good luck in your search!

Regards,
Josephine
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Offline YatesJones

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Re: Illegitimate babies and finding fathers- where to being or when to give up?!
« Reply #6 on: Friday 09 November 18 21:24 GMT (UK) »
I have the same issue - gran only has mother listed on BC and no one knows or knew anything about her father. Oh and the name is Jones...cant be many of them around!!

Have been looking for four years now and have kind of accepted its something I am never going to know.

Offline wivenhoe

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Re: Illegitimate babies and finding fathers- where to being or when to give up?!
« Reply #7 on: Friday 09 November 18 21:54 GMT (UK) »

Do you have the birth certificate for grandmother, born 1939?

What age was her mother....your great grandmother, in 1939?

Who raised your grandmother?

How do you know that your great grandmother was in service at the time?