Author Topic: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...  (Read 741 times)

Offline AuntieMomo

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Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« on: Sunday 19 April 20 21:40 BST (UK) »
Hi, I wonder if anyone can help.  It's not possible to get some of the records I need at the moment.  I've spoken with my Mum, who has a certain understanding of the situation that doesn't seem to be borne out by what I've found online at Scotland's People.

My great-grandmother Elizabeth Kelly, who lived in Denny and Falkirk, got pregnant age 16 and had my grandmother in 1918 (father identified but out of the picture).  She then had another child 2 years later and in the entry in the birth register, there is no father given and this child is also illegitimate.  The following year, in 1919, Elizabeth Kelly (despite being Catholic) seems to have gotten married to an Arthur White in a civil ceremony under the Sheriff's warrant. They both seem to be living at the same address along with her father and sister. Subsequently, my mum was told that Elizabeth was married to another man called Meaney and I'm not going to post the full name due to living relatives. They were said to have had 6 children.  However, there was a child Mary born in 1920. In Scotland's people, there was a Mary Kelly White, and a Mary Kelly Meaney, both born 1920 in Falkirk.  No online records so I can't look at both to compare and see if they were the same person.
 
I'm trying to find this Arthur White, who was a dock worker. Lots of Arthur Whites (father Frederick White, mother Jessie Hall, born around 1896) all over the UK.  Also, when Elizabeth Kelly died, her father who registered the death seems to have supplied the information that she was called Elizabeth Meaney, married to the man Meaney.  Seven years laer, on my grandmother's marriage register entry in 1939, she is said to be the daughter of Elizabeth Kelly, "who afterwards married Arthur White."  My mum has no knowledge of an Arthur White.  Elizabeth surely could not have married bigamously and there is no record of a second marriage to Meaney.

I've tried to find a suitable Arthur White with a father Frederick.  Found one of the correct age, who was a dock worker, in West Ham in London! What would someone like that be doing in Falkirk living with the Kellys?  But I don't know how to find out more about him.  And I don't know how to find out if this Arthur was father of the second child in 1918 and the third child in 1920, I guess this is now impossible? The 1918 child in question has now passed away and had no children.  Also, could you have gotten away with registering a child twice - Mary White/Meaney? And finally, could you have gotten away with just saying you were married in the 1920s?  Especially when there was no church wedding?  When Elizabeth died, Meaney married in the Church of Scotland and he was described as a 'bachelor'.  Any comments on what you could get away with in those days or how  I can find out more would be most welcome.  Cheers, Momo
McKenna McCann Gallacher Kelly Denny Dunipace Falkirk Stirling Longriggend

Offline suey

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Re: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« Reply #1 on: Sunday 19 April 20 22:19 BST (UK) »

To answer the last sentence in your last paragraph. 
I have a family c1920-1930.  Mrs A leaves her husband to live with Mr B.who has left his wife.
They have five children together, all the children were registered under their mothers married surname (B) in one particular registration district.  They were then all registered again in another registration district under Mr Bs surname.  Mr B and Mrs A lived as man and wife and we’re together for their remaining years.

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Offline Milliepede

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Re: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« Reply #2 on: Sunday 19 April 20 22:22 BST (UK) »
Quote
Any comments on what you could get away with in those days or how  I can find out more would be most welcome.

Short answer is you could get away with lots of things. 

She could have just lived with Mr Meaney as husband and wife - especially if Mr White was still around and still her husband. 
Mr Meaney marrying after she died as a bachelor could well be true.
Hinchliffe Huddersfield Wiltshire


Offline MonicaL

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Re: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« Reply #3 on: Sunday 19 April 20 22:29 BST (UK) »
However, there was a child Mary born in 1920. In Scotland's people, there was a Mary Kelly White, and a Mary Kelly Meaney, both born 1920 in Falkirk.  No online records so I can't look at both to compare and see if they were the same person.
 

Very likely the same birth reg for baby Mary. Are the references the same? It would imply that the birth was illegitimate and Mr Meaney attended the Registrar's office with Elizabeth Kelly to register the birth and consented to his name going on the register as Mary's father...but they were not married.

Monica
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Re: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« Reply #4 on: Sunday 19 April 20 22:34 BST (UK) »
Yes I would agree likely the same Mary registered under both surnames.

But this was 1920 and she married Mr White in 1919 so the marriage was short lived. 
He could have been the father of the first two children* which prompted them to marry but then again he may not have been  :-\

*sorry the second child.  You say the father of the first one was identified but out of the picture so not Mr White I'm assuming.
Hinchliffe Huddersfield Wiltshire

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Re: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« Reply #5 on: Sunday 19 April 20 22:42 BST (UK) »
In Scotland's people, there was a Mary Kelly White, and a Mary Kelly Meaney, both born 1920 in Falkirk.  No online records so I can't look at both to compare and see if they were the same person.
Actually you can. In Scotland every registration has a unique reference number, unlike England where all entries on a given page of the register share the same reference.

The reference number of the birth registration of Mary Kelly Meaney and Mary Kelly White is the same, 1920, district no 479 (Falkirk), no 452. So yes, they are one and the same person, registered once but indexed twice, once under her mother's surname and once under her father's.
 
Elizabeth's non-religious marriage ceremony may have been because she was Roman Catholic and her husband did not want a Roman Catholic ceremony.

There is no record on SP of a marriage of Elizabeth Kelly to a Mr Meaney. Nor of an Elizabeth White to a Mr Meaney, though as Scottish women who re-marry are indexed under their maiden surnames, it would not be necessary to look for such a marriage.

Quote
could you have gotten away with just saying you were married in the 1920s?  Especially when there was no church wedding?
Probably.

Quote
When Elizabeth died, Meaney married in the Church of Scotland and he was described as a 'bachelor'.
As there doesn't seem to be a record of the marriage, he probably was a bachelor.
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AITKENHEAD, Lanarkshire; BINNY, Forfar; BLACK, New Monkland; BRYSON, Cumbernauld; BURGESS, North-East Scotland; CRUICKSHANK, Rothes; DALLAS, Botriphnie; DAVIDSON, Oyne; GUTHRIE, Angus; HOGG, Larbert; LESLIE, Rothes/Mortlach; MENDUM, England; MOLLISON, Lethnot; PATERSON, Larbert; RHIND, Forfar; SANG, Scotland; SCOTT, East Kilbride; STOR(R)I/E/Y, Shotts; THORNTON, Shotts; WADDELL, New Monkland; WILKIE, New Monkland; WILKIE, Tannadice; WYLLIE, Angus; YOUNG, Keith

Offline AuntieMomo

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Re: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« Reply #6 on: Sunday 19 April 20 22:46 BST (UK) »
Thanks all.  I guess the marriage was short-lived, but I did want to trace the Arthur White, I wanted to know if he was my great-Aunt and Uncle's father.  I couldn't think how else he would be persuaded to marry Elizabeth (within reason).  E.g. he lodged with them, got Elizabeth pregnant and was marched to the registry office, then did a runner after getting her pregnant again!

Mary White/Meaney - both entries have the same number, so I guess they are both Auntie Mary. I didn't know you could do that within the same district.

My mum has little regard for Meaney.  When Elizabeth died, he walked out and left my grandmother looking after 7 children when she was just 16, and left her the funeral bill as well.  After public outcry, he came back and took the 4 youngest children.  Wonder if he left the older ones because they possibly weren't his.
McKenna McCann Gallacher Kelly Denny Dunipace Falkirk Stirling Longriggend

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Re: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« Reply #7 on: Sunday 19 April 20 22:50 BST (UK) »
To answer the last sentence in your last paragraph. 
I have a family c1920-1930.  Mrs A leaves her husband to live with Mr B.who has left his wife.
They have five children together, all the children were registered under their mothers married surname (B) in one particular registration district.  They were then all registered again in another registration district under Mr Bs surname.  Mr B and Mrs A lived as man and wife and we’re together for their remaining years.
In Scotland every birth had to be registered in the district where the it occurred. So you couldn't do as you have described without lying consistently, five times, about where the children were born.

You would expect the births to be indexed twice; once under the mother's married surname, and once under the father's surname.

You do sometimes get a double registration, if a birth takes place in a registration district other than that of the parents' domicile. In that case the Registrar in the birth district sends the information to the Registrar in the district of domicile, and he adds the information to his register, so you get duplicate entries in the register, but the parents still only register it once.
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AITKENHEAD, Lanarkshire; BINNY, Forfar; BLACK, New Monkland; BRYSON, Cumbernauld; BURGESS, North-East Scotland; CRUICKSHANK, Rothes; DALLAS, Botriphnie; DAVIDSON, Oyne; GUTHRIE, Angus; HOGG, Larbert; LESLIE, Rothes/Mortlach; MENDUM, England; MOLLISON, Lethnot; PATERSON, Larbert; RHIND, Forfar; SANG, Scotland; SCOTT, East Kilbride; STOR(R)I/E/Y, Shotts; THORNTON, Shotts; WADDELL, New Monkland; WILKIE, New Monkland; WILKIE, Tannadice; WYLLIE, Angus; YOUNG, Keith

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Re: Kelly, Meaney and White - a delicate situation...
« Reply #8 on: Sunday 19 April 20 23:40 BST (UK) »
E.g. he lodged with them, got Elizabeth pregnant and was marched to the registry office, then did a runner after getting her pregnant again!
This could not have happened, because there was no such thing as a register office wedding until 1939.

See https://www.gla.ac.uk/schools/socialpolitical/research/economicsocialhistory/historymedicine/scottishwayofbirthanddeath/marriage/

There were basically three ways of getting married. First, a religious ceremony. This normally took place in the bride's parents' home or, if she had no parents or was getting married a long way from her home, in the manse (the minister's house) or her employer's home.

Second, a marriage by declaration before witnesses. This could take place anywhere and was a legal marriage. However in order to have such a marriage registered they had to obtain a Sheriff's warrant. In effect this was document that showed that the Sheriff had heard the evidence of the couple and two witnesses and was satisfied that the marriage was legal and the warrant authorised the Registrar to record the marriage in his register. The Sheriff played no part in the marriage ceremony and no Sheriff's warrant was required in order to get married.

A variant of this was a promise of marriage followed by consummation. But the promise had to be formal, either a letter or a promise made before witnesses.

Third, marriage by cohabitation and repute. If a couple had lived together for a number of years, and it was widely believed that they were married, then in the eyes of the law they could be regarded as legally married provided there was no impediment, for example a living spouse.
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AITKENHEAD, Lanarkshire; BINNY, Forfar; BLACK, New Monkland; BRYSON, Cumbernauld; BURGESS, North-East Scotland; CRUICKSHANK, Rothes; DALLAS, Botriphnie; DAVIDSON, Oyne; GUTHRIE, Angus; HOGG, Larbert; LESLIE, Rothes/Mortlach; MENDUM, England; MOLLISON, Lethnot; PATERSON, Larbert; RHIND, Forfar; SANG, Scotland; SCOTT, East Kilbride; STOR(R)I/E/Y, Shotts; THORNTON, Shotts; WADDELL, New Monkland; WILKIE, New Monkland; WILKIE, Tannadice; WYLLIE, Angus; YOUNG, Keith