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Gwyn in Kent
15-08-09, 21:44
In which country should I look for divorce / remarriage records if a Scottish couple (married 1914 in Scotland ) were living apart in 1930s.?

The wife lived in Aberdeen and her husband was based in Port Elizabeth or Durban, South Africa.
The 2 surviving daughters feel sure that their mother would not have divorced their father....but who knows? They hadn't seen him since 1930s.

The 1st wife died in Aberdeen in 1969, but we found him with a new wife and child on incoming passenger lists arriving Southampton in 1950s.

Communication with the Passport Office showed that the couple held a joint passport, as was fairly normal at that time, and for one to have been issued there would have been a document check of their status.

We have since found that the couple were in Sussex for the birth of another son in 1947,...Have birth cert, but no record of parents travel to England.... but left within a few months and headed for South Africa. This son died there. The child who travelled to UK was born in Port Elizabeth in 1949.

Olde Crone Holden
15-08-09, 22:14
Gwyn

Between 1930-1950, divorce was only available in this country with good cause, so if a divorce did take place, the first wife must have divorced him - I am assuming he left her, not the other way around.

I don't know much about Scottish divorce, but as it happens, two of my female Scottish relatives petitioned for divorce BEFORE 1930, so maybe it wasn't as frowned on in Scotland?

OC

Gwyn in Kent
15-08-09, 22:34
Thank you O.C.

He got a job on the mail boats off the east coast of Africa and the family travelled out,...late 1920s, but the wife couldn't settle so they returned to Scotland leaving him to work there.
The eldest daughter visited him again with her paternal grandmother in early 1930s and that was the last they knew of him.

I wonder if he married again in South Africa, but just convieniently forgot to mention the wife and family back in Aberdeen.

Would checks have been made, ...or could he just hope to get away with it?

Mary from Italy
15-08-09, 22:34
Communication with the Passport Office showed that the couple held a joint passport, as was fairly normal at that time, and for one to have been issued there would have been a document check of their status.


They would presumably only check the marriage cert, though. If the husband said he was single or widowed when he was married, I don't think they'd check that out. In fact I doubt if it was possible to check it in those days.

Gwyn in Kent
15-08-09, 22:38
...Posts crossed...

Thank you Mary
That's what I was thinking.
Where do I apply for a marriage certificate, ..possibly in Port Elizabeth.
I know names, but not where or when.

Mary from Italy
15-08-09, 23:11
I believe South Africa's a difficult place to get certs from.

South Africa - Family Tree Forum (http://www.familytreeforum.com/wiki/index.php/South_Africa)

Mary from Italy
15-08-09, 23:12
However, if he and his new wife were both British citizens, you may find them listed among the overseas marriages on FindmyPast or FamilyRelatives.

Gwyn in Kent
15-08-09, 23:26
Thank you for your help Mary.
Yes, both British by birth and place.

By coincidence, the 2nd wife was born just a few miles from here. We have her birth(1904) and death cert.
Her family supposedly went out to Mauitius when she was young....Perhaps he worked on boats there too?

I don't have a subscription to those sites, but will investigate to see if I can search names.

Mary from Italy
16-08-09, 00:08
You'll need to buy credits to search FMP (it's like the BMD image search, unfortunately, so you take pot luck).

On FR the overseas BMD search is free, provided you already have some credits (so you don't actually use them up for the search).

Gwyn in Kent
16-08-09, 00:15
Thank you for the extra information, Mary.