Brick Walls

For more than 60 years, I have been engaged in extensive research putting together my family tree and have published a website listing 14 of these ancestor trees and 6 descendent charts. Along the way, I have encountered numerous "brick walls", which are genealogical research problems that seem impossible to solve. While my website includes a list of these brickwalls, I have decided to supplement it with this blog. Some of the brick walls you will read here have been resolved, while others have not. My hope is that readers will perhaps have answers or possible different solutions to the ones I have presented.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Ann Hall Research Notes

The Problem  Finding the birth and parents of Ann Hall, wife of Henry York.

Ann Hall  Ann Hall and Henry York were married 5 Jul 1830 in Monks Kirby, Warwickshire, England (England Parish Records, Monks Kirby, Warwickshire Marriages 1830 p.69).  It is not clear why Henry and Ann were married in Monks Kirby rather than Claybrooke or Long Buckby.  Henry had left home and was working in the northern part of Leicestershire.  Ann may also have left home and could have been employed in Monks Kirby.  The date of their marriage is consistent with family records, which do not include the location.

Henry's residence on the marriage record is given as Sharnford.  Henry's occupation then of teamster, would explain a different residence as would his work on building the London-Birmingham Railway, and before that working on building a roadbed.  However, there is no railroad near Sharnford.  There are no Yorks in Sharnford records.

Henry and Ann had five children: Frederick, Mary, John, Sarah and Henry Jr.  See The Descendants of Thomas York and Mary Dickens for details about the children and their descendants.  Also included are Henry's siblings and their descendants.  See The Descendants of Thomas York and Alice Boreman for his father's siblings and their descendants.

In 1841, Henry and Ann lived in the same part of Long Buckby as his parents (1841 ENG Henry York).  However as the years passed and he became responsible for a family of five children besides his wife and himself, his cramped economic condition in England looked less and less promising.  He looked to the West (Canada) which held more promise for his growing family.

Henry, Ann and the five children left London on 29 Jun 1844 in the Cairo and were two months at sea.  Henry's letter of 4 Jul 1844 describes many details of the voyage.  Note that the last sentence is "Please to send this or a copey to Claybrooke."  Since Henry's parents and his siblings were living in Long Bucky at the time, this is most likely a reference to Ann's family.

The next surviving letter, dated 25 Dec 1844, describes their arrival in Canada and Anne's death on 24 Sep 1844 at the quarantine station on Grosse Ile, Quebec (Qu├ębec (Anglican) Travelling Mission 1844).  This letter mentions "wifes mother, brothers and sisters".  In the same letter, "Fred sends his love to his uncle Richard".  There is no Richard in the York family in Long Buckby.

After Ann's death, Henry and the children went on to settle in Ontario.  Henry married again and had nine more children.

Ann's Birth  There are two clues to Ann's birth date.  One is her age in the 1841 census where she was listed as 25 years old.  However, in 1841 the ages of people over 15 years old were usually rounded down to the nearest 5 years.  So she was probably between 25 and 29 years of age, and born about 1812-1817.  Another consideration is that she was married in 1830 and since it was by banns, she was at least 18 years old - and thus born in 1812 or earlier.

Two possible birth places were explored: Monk's Kirby, where Ann and Henry were married, and Claybrooke, where, according to Henry's 4 Jul letter, her family was living in 1844.  There were many records with a surname of Hall in Monk's Kirby, but none that fit Ann.

In the 1841 census, there was a Hall family in Claybrooke of the right ages to be Ann's parents and her brother Richard (1841 ENG Timothy Hall).  A child, Mary Willford, also resided in the household.  Her connection to the family has never been found.

Ann Hall's baptism was also found in Claybrooke - she was born 15 Jun 1812 and baptized 10 Jan 1813 (England Parish Records, Claybrooke, Leicestershire Baptisms 1813 p.1 no.2).

Summary  The information supports the conclusion that Ann Hall was the daughter of Timothy Hall and Ann Palmer of Claybrooke.

Go to Ann Hall in the Hall Descendant Chart