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Marriage Certificates

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#1
I have the marriage cert. of my greatgrandfather, Alexander Wright, in the section for parents it has his father as John Edward Wright, I have done numerous searches for his father and come up blank every time, however, I searched my greatgrandfather(Alexander) in the 1881 cencus and I found a household where the head of the family is the mother, no father listed, but there is a Jno. Edward Wright listed as brother.

First of all does anybody know what Jno. means or could this just be John misspelt,

and secondly, if there was no father at the time of the wedding would it be normal practice for the elder brother to put his name on the wedding cerificate

grateful for any insights

Les D
 

benny1982

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#2
Hi Les

Jno is a short name for John.

John Snr may have died by the 1881 census. What is the mothers marital status? Unmarried, Married or widowed?

It could be that the Alexander was illegitimate and simply thought up a name for his father. Who better to give for a name than his brother.

Ben
 

p.risboy

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#4
I have the marriage cert. of my greatgrandfather, Alexander Wright, in the section for parents it has his father as John Edward Wright, I have done numerous searches for his father and come up blank every time, however, I searched my greatgrandfather(Alexander) in the 1881 cencus and I found a household where the head of the family is the mother, no father listed, but there is a Jno. Edward Wright listed as brother.

First of all does anybody know what Jno. means or could this just be John misspelt,

and secondly, if there was no father at the time of the wedding would it be normal practice for the elder brother to put his name on the wedding cerificate

grateful for any insights



Les D
Hi Les.welcome

I have had the same problem x2. And it did turn out to be older brothers as 'father'.
I also had one Grt. Uncle put his own name in.
If the people to be married are underage, that could also be a reason.
Sometimes we will never know, but it does make research that bit more difficult. And we don't need that do we.;)

Steve.
 

benny1982

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#5
Hi

If a sibling, especially an older one had a middle name that was the fathers first name then sometimes they thought the father was exactly the same as the sibling when it was simply the other sibling had the fathers first name as a middle name and the father had just one name.

Eg if Henry John Bloggs had a father called John Bloggs and a younger brother called David Bloggs then David may have though the father was Henry John instead of just John.

Ben
 

AthenaLou

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#6
hi
i've had the same problem.....Edward Middleton, my great grandfather, named his father as Edward Middleton on his marriage cert.......i managed to find a birth for Edward Middleton in 1865 and ordered the certificate only to find the fathers name was blank and that Edward Middleton was born in a workhouse in Kensington.....his mothers name (Emma) is on the certficiate but even with that i cannot find any birth, death or marriage entry for her.
I found out from one of my genealogy mags that the mother of an illegitimate child would often give the child, the fathers surname as a middle name and on Edward's birth cert his middle name is given as Norton.....and this explains why some people have a 'surname' as a middle name.....i tried looking for Emma Middleton and could only find a servant which is most probably the right one as many children were born to servants illegitimately and it was common for one of the male members of the household to be the father.....so i tried looking for a family called Norton with a servant called Emma Middleton and wasn;t successful.....i have no idea where Emma was born so it really hard to trace the line back any further
 

benny1982

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#7
Hi

Quite often the mother would give the fathers surname as a middle name for the child if the father wouldnt own up. It may have been a way to expose him. If the father did own up and planned to wed the mother at a later date then often they didnt give his surname as a middle name and just simply gave the baby the fathers name upon the marriage.

But if the father never owned up and the mother remained single, then the illegitimate child would invent a fathers name. Often it was the name of the grandfather.

Many parents of illegitimate children who wed after the birth kept the child in the dark about their illegitimacy, often moving away from their home area to avoid comments from locals and to protect their baby.

Ben
 

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