• Welcome to Family History Forum 🔎

    Dive into a community where unraveling family history is a shared passion. Here, real people collaborate, offering advice, insights, and support in navigating the rich tapestry of genealogy. Engage in vibrant discussions, pose questions, or celebrate your latest findings on our active message boards.

    Whether you're piecing together ancestry or breaking through brick walls in your research, our forum is your essential resource 📚

    Join fellow family historians in this journey, where every story uncovered strengthens the bonds that connect us all 🔗

    Family History UK
  • Do you love Genealogy? Why not write for us? we're looking for volunteers to write articles for Family history. Please contact us for further information.

Widows, widowers remarrying


Loyal Member
dovercourt but born Enfield
I have noticed in my searches that widows (widowers) with young children often remarried within a short time after their loss.
I have assumed that this was due in part to the lack of financial support people got in the 19th century unlike today!
Anyone of a similar view!



Loyal Member
Hi Peter,

I think that had a lot to do with it, widows with kids needing financial support and / or widowers with kids needing someone to help and look after his kids whilst he worked.


Valued Member
Peter, this is an extract from a centenary booklet of my infants school, and refers to the compensation paid out after an explosion in the first pit at my home village in 1867 when 178 men and boys lost their lives, quote, :-
"A total of 67 widows claimed compensation and it is worth noting the scale:-
Widows (as long as they remain respectable and clean living) 5 shillings.
Boys up to the age of 12 & girls up to the age of 13 - 1 shilling and 6 pence per week.
Dependants (parents) 5 shillings a week.
Orphans - 2 shillings and 6 pence a week.
Those partially blind - 1 shilling extra.
On remarriage a widow received £20.00.
There is on record, the fact that one widow had to forfeit the 5 shillings because when was caught in bed with a man." Unquote.
The money was paid out of disaster fund which the mine owner had contributed to, Queen Victoria sent £500 and the total raised at the time came to £18,782.00.
I believe in those days, their accommodation could also be taken from them as they were all owned by the owner of the coal mine and he wanted them for the miners who were working in his pit.
Ashby de la Zouch
In total agreement with you regarding quick re-marriage of widow/ers.

i have just come across an example in my own family tree. My great-grandfather left Cheshire to move to North-East with his family for work reasons. His wife died in 1922, but within a year he was remarried to a widow who lived 3 streets away, who had also come from the same village in Cheshire with her family.

She had 3 young children to look after, my great grandfather's children were all grown up and left home according to the 1911 census. He was 55 years old when he remarried.

The second marriage had no issue, so it looks like that it was a marriage of convenience; she to have a someone to help provide for her and her children, he to have someone to keep house. Maybe coming from the same village with both men working in the same place, the two were friends prior to them becoming widowed.
Would be nice to find a diary......