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Disappearing Family


New member
I have been working on a puzzle that I just can't get to the bottom of. My 2x great grandmother was Kathleen Helen Mary Hall. The only record I've ever managed to find of her is her marriage certificate and 1901 & 1911 census returns. According to the census she was born about 1876 in Limerick Ireland. She married Joseph Henry Smith in July 1986. They were very poor, pretty much in a slum. I can't track down her death, but it must be sometime after the 1911 census and before Joseph remarried in 1917.

Using the information on her marriage certificate I've managed to track down her parents, but here it gets strange. Her father was Louis Goodwin Hall, a merchant born 1852. Her mother was Marianne Helen Corles born 1857. Both of them come from very well off families. They married in June 1875. There is no record I can find for the birth of Kathleen, but there is a birth and baptism record for a child named Vinnie Helen Fitzgibbon Hall 25 Nov 1875 in Kensington. There is then another child born named Daisy Marianne Hall 24 Jan 1877 in Marylebone, no baptism found. The parents and Daisy then completely disappear as far as I can tell, I can't find any trace of them.

Vinnie pops up one more time on the 1881 census. She is living in Chorlton on Medlock near Manchester with an aunt named Marion Glens who I have not been able to identify. The address seems to be the site of an old pub called Bloomsbury Hotel. I know this is the correct Vinnie as I have found a marriage registration for her widowed maternal grandmother Lavinia in 1885. At the age of 48 she married 24 year old Fletcher Swindells Rix in Chorlton on Medlock. He actually lived on the same street as Vinnie at the time of the 1881 census. A servant living at the house with Vinnie was a witness on the marriage certificate. Oddly, a niece of Lavinia got married in the same place at the same time.

A couple of other possibly relevant clues: Louis Goodwin Hall's father was Irish. Marianne's mother Lavinia came from Oxford and so did the aunt that Vinnie was living with in 1881. Lavinia does not appear on the 1881 or 1891 census. Lavinia's niece (who gets married at the same time as her)'s husband was the son of a merchant. The Weekly Echo of 1873 lists Lavinia Helen Corles under estates for liquidation. Vinnie's aunt's occupation in 1881 is listed as "restaurant" and they have a cook and a waitress living with them.

After this there is no more sign of Vinnie. There are so many questions. Were Vinnie and Kathleen the same person? Then why change her name and claim to be Irish? What happened to Louis, Marianne and Daisy? Why can't I find Kathleen's death registration? I'm not sure where to look next.


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Marriages Sep Qtr 1896
HALL Kathleen Helen Lewisham 1d 2019
SMITH Joseph Henry Lewisham 1d 2019

GRO Reference: 1852 D Quarter in WHITECHAPEL Volume 01C Page 347

GRO Reference: 1857 S Quarter in BIRMINGHAM Volume 06D Page 84
I can't find anything on Marion/Marian/Mariann Glens/Glen/Glenn.

I can't find anything in Ireland that fits.

No gap between Vinnie and Daisy.

Deaths Jun Qtr 1937
HALL Daisy M 59 Birmingham 6d 519
Vinnie Helen Fitzgibbon Hall born March Quarter 1876 mmn Corles
I think Vinnie must be Kathleen seeing as Vinnie's mother is shown as Corles!
Vinnie is definitely the daughter of Louis and Marianne. I have records of her birth and baptism. I haven't found any record for the birth of Kathleen. So either they are the same person or sisters very close in age and I just haven't found records for Kathleen.