Author Topic: 1921 Census - Adopted Children  (Read 475 times)

Offline junellie

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1921 Census - Adopted Children
« on: Thursday 06 January 22 22:34 GMT (UK) »
Hi all,


I've just gotten the 1921 census entry (very exciting day!) for my great-granddad, Gerald, who was adopted as a child. I know nothing about his biological nor adoptive family.

In the previous census he lived with his biological father and his older siblings, Hetty and William. In the 1921 census, he lives with a new family, and Hetty (who was still under 18) but not with William (who was in his 20's).

Gerald and Hetty are both listed as boarders in this household with no mention of being adopted such as being listed as "adopted son" or "adopted granddaughter" - is boarder the usual terminology for adopted children in censuses or is this family he is boarding with not likely his adoptive family?


Thank you for any help,
Ell

Offline MJW

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Re: 1921 Census - Adopted Children
« Reply #1 on: Friday 07 January 22 14:57 GMT (UK) »
Hi all,


I've just gotten the 1921 census entry (very exciting day!) for my great-granddad, Gerald, who was adopted as a child. I know nothing about his biological nor adoptive family.

In the previous census he lived with his biological father and his older siblings, Hetty and William. In the 1921 census, he lives with a new family, and Hetty (who was still under 18) but not with William (who was in his 20's).

Gerald and Hetty are both listed as boarders in this household with no mention of being adopted such as being listed as "adopted son" or "adopted granddaughter" - is boarder the usual terminology for adopted children in censuses or is this family he is boarding with not likely his adoptive family?


Thank you for any help,
Ell

Hi

A "Boarder" is someone who lives in the household and makes payment for their accommodation.  It's similar to a "Lodger", the difference being that a lodger pays for use of a room only, a boarder pays for a room and meals.  Lodgers were supposed to be treated as a separate household with their own census form (this doesn't always happen). Boarders should have their details entered with the household. I've found in my research in various census years that boarders and lodgers can sometimes be family members but not always, it's more likely with boarders.

There was no formal legal adoption in England & Wales until 1926 (few years later in Scotland & N.Ireland) so unlikely to be shown in 1921.  There were "adoptions" before then but these were informal unofficial arrangements.

Hope this helps.
   Malcolm
 
Wood(s) Lancashire/Clayton-le-Moors & Sawley (orig. W.Yorkshire 1841)
Thornley, Heyes Lancashire/Clayton-le-Moors
Emmett Lancashire/Chorley, Blackburn
Nightingale, Livesey, Warburton, Gorton Lancashire/Blackburn, Darwen
Kilshaw - Lancaster
Mahoney Oswaldtwistle, Ireland
Brennan E.Lancs., Tipperary

Census information is Crown Copyright, National Archives for academic and non-commercial research purposes only

Online Milliepede

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Re: 1921 Census - Adopted Children
« Reply #2 on: Friday 07 January 22 15:45 GMT (UK) »
Do you know who he is living with in 1939? 
Hinchliffe - Huddersfield Wiltshire
Burroughs - Arlingham Glos
Pick - Frocester Glos


Offline BenRalph

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Re: 1921 Census - Adopted Children
« Reply #3 on: Friday 07 January 22 22:20 GMT (UK) »
My great grandma is down as 'adopted daughter' and for parents living it says 'both alive' even though her mum died and that was the reason she was adopted. Her dad and adopted dad worked together and her mum died in childbirth which is the reason for her dad to ask the adopted parents to care for her.

Offline Marmalady

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Re: 1921 Census - Adopted Children
« Reply #4 on: Friday 07 January 22 22:45 GMT (UK) »
My G G Grandparents had their married daughter, son-in-law and 2 young grandchildren living with them in 1921.
The whole family are listed as "Boarders", despite their actual blood relationship to the Head of household
Wainwright - Yorkshire
Whitney - Herefordshire
Watson -  Northamptonshire
Trant - Yorkshire
Helps - all
Needham - Derbyshire
Waterhouse - Derbyshire
Northing - all

Offline cbowley

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Re: 1921 Census - Adopted Children
« Reply #5 on: Friday 07 January 22 23:58 GMT (UK) »
I have a similar case in the 1921 census. A suspected GGF of mine was father to a three year old child. The mother died a few months after the child was born. The father, along with many others, was put out of work by the collapsing railway companies and was in the workhouse when the census was taken. The child was listed as a boarder in a house otherwise occupied by two widowed sisters, unrelated to the child but living in the neighbourhood. There was no further record for either father or child until 1939 to say how the situation was resolved.
Bowley - Leicestershire/Nottinghamshire.
Cooper/Lungley - around the River Blackwater in Essex.
Austen - Kent
Haspinall - London
Judd/Perren - Wiltshire
Manfull/Thirtle/Cannell - Norfolk/Suffolk

Offline junellie

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Re: 1921 Census - Adopted Children
« Reply #6 on: Saturday 08 January 22 01:32 GMT (UK) »
Thank you so much for your help everyone.


Hi

A "Boarder" is someone who lives in the household and makes payment for their accommodation.  It's similar to a "Lodger", the difference being that a lodger pays for use of a room only, a boarder pays for a room and meals.  Lodgers were supposed to be treated as a separate household with their own census form (this doesn't always happen). Boarders should have their details entered with the household. I've found in my research in various census years that boarders and lodgers can sometimes be family members but not always, it's more likely with boarders.

There was no formal legal adoption in England & Wales until 1926 (few years later in Scotland & N.Ireland) so unlikely to be shown in 1921.  There were "adoptions" before then but these were informal unofficial arrangements.

Hope this helps.
   Malcolm

I had no idea about the legal adoption thing, thanks for all of this information. So perhaps it is their adoptive family, but odd that they would be paying a proper rate in that case and when both Gerald and Hetty were in full time education?


For the person who asked, they were both married and living with their spouses by the 1939 Register so figuring out the adoption situation is all resting on the 1921 Census - but thanks for the good idea!

Offline sparrett

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Re: 1921 Census - Adopted Children
« Reply #7 on: Saturday 08 January 22 01:54 GMT (UK) »
The marriage certificates of both or either of the siblings might have witnesses or other hints of interest.

Sue
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Offline MJW

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Re: 1921 Census - Adopted Children
« Reply #8 on: Saturday 08 January 22 15:12 GMT (UK) »
It could be that Gerald & Hetty were not paying for their board.  Someone else might have been paying (the biological father??) or maybe they weren't paying at all, particularly if this was their adoptive family.  I think terms such as boarder/lodger/visitor were used fairly loosely at times if the householder wasn't sure what to call them.

Malcolm
Wood(s) Lancashire/Clayton-le-Moors & Sawley (orig. W.Yorkshire 1841)
Thornley, Heyes Lancashire/Clayton-le-Moors
Emmett Lancashire/Chorley, Blackburn
Nightingale, Livesey, Warburton, Gorton Lancashire/Blackburn, Darwen
Kilshaw - Lancaster
Mahoney Oswaldtwistle, Ireland
Brennan E.Lancs., Tipperary

Census information is Crown Copyright, National Archives for academic and non-commercial research purposes only