Author Topic: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?  (Read 920 times)

Offline Mart 'n' Al

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My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« on: Tuesday 04 December 18 18:15 GMT (UK) »
I am trying to find out more about the later life of my illiterate grandfather George Daniel Leggett, born in Corton in Suffolk in 1837.  He was a fisherman and had various fishing jobs off the coast of East Anglia. In about 1860 he married a lady, Mary Boynton, in Hull, before the two settled in Scarborough and had three or four children during the 1860s.

The next 20 years of George's life are very unclear as he has not been found on the 1871 nor 1881 censuses, (possibly at sea?).  He appears on 2 crew lists in 1882 and 1884.  In 1891 (RG12/4059) he is lodging in 88 High Street, Hartlepool, described as widower.

In the early 1890s he is found to be living, probably unmarried, with my great grandmother Jane Leggett. Over the next 10 years he had a series of jobs variously as a fishmonger in Richmond, Yorkshire and the landlord of a pub in Barningham. During those several years George and Jane had 6 children, culminating with the birth of my grandfather (Thomas) William Leggett in 1900. 

I have been unable to find George on the 1901 census. The rest of the family is at 10 St Helen's Place, Hartlepool, oddly under the name of Jane's late first husband, Thompson.  (Being a former fisherman, possible he was at sea, at age 64).

On the 1911 census for Jane Leggett and family he is described as 'Husband away', and is at 29 Acclom Street, Hartlepool.  I do not have any record that they were officially married, and his earlier wife Mary Boynton was still showing herself as married in Scarborough in 1911.

In 1915 on her marriage certificate, his daughter Lavinia, describes her father as deceased, yet records show he did not die until 1921, certified by the man in whose house he was at in 1911.  Had she been told her father was dead?

I think it is plausible that George and Jane had some sort of rift round about 1900, as there seems to be little evidence that they were together after this date, especially as she used her previous name on the 1901 census, although the children were all listed as 'Leggett'. 

I was hoping to use my 1000th comment on Rootschat with this request, but unfortunately I hadn't assembled the necessary information in time!  I would be grateful for anyone who can fill in any of the blanks, as I and other members of the family have run into a dead end.

Martin

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Names: Loughborough and Loughbrough, (London, Hull, Pirton and Hartlepool);
Watson, (Bedlington, Jarrow & Hartlepool);
Ballard & Glassop (E. London); 
Leggett (Corton, Scarborough, Hartlepool); 
Young & Wilson, (Hartlepool). 

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Offline lizdb

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Re: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« Reply #1 on: Tuesday 04 December 18 18:37 GMT (UK) »
In 1901 the children are all Leggatts, apart form the eldest, Henry who is a Thompson.  He is a Thompson on 1911 too.  So I think he was Janes from her marriage to Thompson.  She then lives with George Leggatt and has all the other children, but doesn't actually marry him - because his wife is still alive.
So she probably sometimes uses Thompson, and sometimes Leggatt, whatever is easier!  On 1901 she said she was a widow called Jane Thompson - which she was.
 
Edmonds/Edmunds - mainly Sussex
DeBoo - London
Green - Suffolk
Parker - Sussex
Kemp - Essex
Farrington - Essex
Boniface - West Sussex

census information is Crown Copyright from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

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Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« Reply #2 on: Tuesday 04 December 18 19:55 GMT (UK) »
Lizbd, yes, your comments are in keeping with what I believe so far.  Jane was earlier married to a 70-year old man, who died soon after the child was born.

I wonder if Jane knew George's wife was still alive?

It is all so odd.

Martin
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Names: Loughborough and Loughbrough, (London, Hull, Pirton and Hartlepool);
Watson, (Bedlington, Jarrow & Hartlepool);
Ballard & Glassop (E. London); 
Leggett (Corton, Scarborough, Hartlepool); 
Young & Wilson, (Hartlepool). 

I use GRAMPS v5.0 software.

Offline BenRalph

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Re: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« Reply #3 on: Tuesday 04 December 18 20:55 GMT (UK) »
What does Jane die as? And before or after George? And how's she described on her death?

Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« Reply #4 on: Tuesday 04 December 18 22:50 GMT (UK) »
Ben, Jane died 29th Dec 1931, 20 South Parade, Hartlepool, informant was her son, George junior.  She is described as widow of George Leggett, fisherman.  I have her movements through much of the 1920s from Electoral data.

Martin
Gedmatch DNA Kit H062246.
FT-DNA Kit B388093

Names: Loughborough and Loughbrough, (London, Hull, Pirton and Hartlepool);
Watson, (Bedlington, Jarrow & Hartlepool);
Ballard & Glassop (E. London); 
Leggett (Corton, Scarborough, Hartlepool); 
Young & Wilson, (Hartlepool). 

I use GRAMPS v5.0 software.

Offline lizdb

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Re: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« Reply #5 on: Wednesday 05 December 18 14:41 GMT (UK) »

It is all so odd.

Is it?   
Isn't it just a case that she and Leggatt are together, but cant marry as he is already married? I'm sure it happened many a time.

Edmonds/Edmunds - mainly Sussex
DeBoo - London
Green - Suffolk
Parker - Sussex
Kemp - Essex
Farrington - Essex
Boniface - West Sussex

census information is Crown Copyright from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« Reply #6 on: Wednesday 05 December 18 14:55 GMT (UK) »
Liz, I just think there seems to be a lot of what we would call these days, ducking and diving. He seems to pop up all over the place, except in 1901. That does seem a big mystery to me.  It's possible that he was at sea, but I get the impression his wife was fairly successful as a local pub landlady. Also, to be still going to see at nearly 65 seems a little bit unlikely although not uncommon. I think he might have been valued at home looking after the children.

 After 19:01 he seems to disappear from the family, but not from Hartlepool. Could there have been a family rift, which led him to live with his friend? And the biggest mystery is why was he described as deceased on his daughter's 1915 marriage certificate ? I have found out so much more about this man, than I ever thought possible, but I've also found a big mystery.  With 6 children under the age of 8 or 9, might they have split up, and then Jane told them all that he had been lost at sea? It seems a little bit unlikely and I welcome any suggestions. Also what was the attitude in late Victorian times to a widow, taking up with a man, remaining unmarried, and having 6 children, whether or not she knew he was previously married? And still married.

All in all, his life, after the birth of my grandfather, Thomas William Leggett in 1900 seems very vague. Almost non-existent until his death in 1921.

Thank you very much for your time and input.

Martin
Gedmatch DNA Kit H062246.
FT-DNA Kit B388093

Names: Loughborough and Loughbrough, (London, Hull, Pirton and Hartlepool);
Watson, (Bedlington, Jarrow & Hartlepool);
Ballard & Glassop (E. London); 
Leggett (Corton, Scarborough, Hartlepool); 
Young & Wilson, (Hartlepool). 

I use GRAMPS v5.0 software.

Offline lizdb

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Re: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« Reply #7 on: Wednesday 05 December 18 14:58 GMT (UK) »
You know what they say about sailors - a girl in every port.   I think Jane Thompson was George Leggatt's girl when in Hartlepool.
Edmonds/Edmunds - mainly Sussex
DeBoo - London
Green - Suffolk
Parker - Sussex
Kemp - Essex
Farrington - Essex
Boniface - West Sussex

census information is Crown Copyright from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: My illiterate great-grandfather - dead, dying, deceitful or discarded?
« Reply #8 on: Wednesday 05 December 18 15:06 GMT (UK) »
Liz, yes I think you could well be right. I've even wondered whether he did occasionally slip back to his wife in Scarborough as it is just down the coast. I quite like the idea of having a lascivious old great-grandfather. I just wish I had some evidence for it. It would explain why Mary in Scarborough still described herself as married. Supposing he was still an active fisherman, and had two or three nights in Hartlepool, two or three nights at sea, and two or three nights in Scarborough?  It still doesn't explain why he is named as deceased on the 1915 marriage certificate.   Surely you would only state that at the time of the marriage if you really believed it?

Martin
Gedmatch DNA Kit H062246.
FT-DNA Kit B388093

Names: Loughborough and Loughbrough, (London, Hull, Pirton and Hartlepool);
Watson, (Bedlington, Jarrow & Hartlepool);
Ballard & Glassop (E. London); 
Leggett (Corton, Scarborough, Hartlepool); 
Young & Wilson, (Hartlepool). 

I use GRAMPS v5.0 software.