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Bradford Mystery

Calling all hardened, experienced family history hunters! Might I ask for a bit of advice?

It concerns my own BRADFORD family history and is a mystery I have been trying to solve for many years.

My father John William BRADFORD was born in Bedford in 1916. He had two older sisters, Evelyn May BRADFORD (b1914) and Florence Cecelia BRADFORD (b1915) both also born in Bedford. Evelyn was born in Bedford Union Workhouse.

I have copies of birth certificates for them all with John Bradford being shown as the father.

There are really two mysteries -

1) Whilst on Evelyn's birth certificate (The eldest child) and my fathers birth certificate (The youngest child) The mother Margaret states her maiden name as GREEN, but on Florences birth certificate (The middle child) she gives her maiden name as DAY. To date I have found no marriage for BRADFORD - GREEN or BRADFORD - DAY.

2) In 1918 all the children are sent to a childrens home in Kempston, Beds. (The entry book for the date they arrive states "Deserted by mother") They never have any further contact with their parents and no-one knows what becomes of them.

I only have 3 official records of John BRADFORD the father.

He appears on all three birth certificates (As horse keeper, Carman, and Waggoner)

He appears on the 1913 electoral roll for Bedford together with his wife Margaret residing in Bell Court, St. John's, Bedford.

He appears on the Bedford Union Relief records on 26th September 1916 as being given two shilling and sixpence. On this record he gives his age as 60. On a similar record in 1914 when Margaret is discharged from the workhouse with her new born child Evelyn, Margaret gives her age as 35. (Quite an age gap for a married couple?)

After 1916 I can find no record of either of them. I do have a few death records in later years but no way of connecting them to my family.

I just wondered if some kind soul amongst you may be able to suggest any further avenues to explore?

Thenking you in anticipation but will perfectly understand if you cannot help.


John Bradford

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