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Proving migration across England way before censuses and BMDs.


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In my research I have managed to prove the migration of an ancestor who married in London in 1784. Dennis Helsdon. He wed Susannah Fradine in St Dunstan Stepney in 1784, died in Bethnal Green in September 1798.

His eldest daughter, my 5xgreat grandmother Elizabeth Carolian Helsdon was born on the 15th July 1784 in Bethnal Green, London.

In 2004 when I first found Dennis I typed the name Dennis Helsdon into the IGI search engine. If he wed in 1784 then he was born around 1760.

The only likely baptism of any Dennis Helsdon in the UK was in 1756 in Norwich, Norfolk, son of Dennis and Elizabeth Helsdon. With a firstname that wasnt common in the 1750s and a rare surname I was pretty sure it was mine as London has always had a large number of Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex migrants settle there.

Dennis Helsdon had a brother Benjamin Helsdon born in 1761 in Norwich. A Benjamin Helsdon married in June 1785 in St Dunstan Stepney, London. One of the witnesses was a Mary Helsdon according to the cert, and Dennis born 1756 and his brother Benjamin born 1761 had a sister Mary born in 1760.

That is when I knew that the Dennis Helsdon born in 1756 in Norfolk was the same Dennis Helsdon who married in London in 1784. Proving migration from one area of Britain to another can be done way before the census and BMDs.



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