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Even with James Smith I shall never give up.


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My ancestor was James Smith who wed Sarah Inkpen in August 1819 at All Saints, Oxford. Witnesses Hannah Hawkes and Andrew Carney. James signed.

James had several children over the next 20 years. He was a brazier/tin plate worker. His children had names such as Sarah, William, Edwin, Charles, Harriet, Eliza, Ann, Elizabeth.

In 1841 James says he was not born in county which was Oxfordshire. Sadly he did not live to see the 1851 census as he died in February 1849 aged 59 of "phthisis, 3 years". A death notice was given in the local newspaper. Just says he was a tin plate worker of St Peter Le Bailey.

I have no record of his birthplace and Oxford seemed to be a honeypot for internal migration. Lots of people from surrounding counties (Berks, Bucks, Gloucestershire) but in 1851 there was lots of people of James Smith's generation living in Oxford who were born as far away as Essex, Kent, Devon, Somerset, Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire. Judging by their children's birthplaces, they seemed to have lived in Oxford for about 20-30 or more years.

I shall not give up even with a name like Smith. May take a while but now that Oxon records are on Anc I shall look at other Smith marriages 1810-1830ish in oxford city to see if James was a witness. I know what his signature was as he signed when he wed in 1819 rather than left a mark. You never know what may come up. Also apparently tin plate workers did an apprenticeship so James may have done an apprenticeship.

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