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congletonian
05-07-10, 14:54
Does anyone know if a couple had to produce their birth certificates when getting married ?? I'm getting nowhere fast in my research into the mystery of my grandad's mother Mary Fletcher(in 1861 census aged 6) and in 1871 census then Mary Holden aged 16.The family all believed she was born Holden by the way but in 1861 she is described as stepdaughter to Robinson Holden who we all thought was her natural father.Some folk may remember my asking for advice on this some time ago?!Robinson and Mary Ann had an older daughter Phoebe born 2 years before Mary and Phoebe's surname is Holden as is her younger brother George born about 1860. Complicated eh!!!

On her marriage cert she says her father is Robinson Holden deceased but she was definitely Fletcher in 1861.I've looked into the Mary Fletchers born about 1855 in Bolton but theycan be traced with both parents on the 1861 census.

Grateful for any advice

Liz

Mike Fisher
05-07-10, 15:18
No ,I don't think you had a copy of the certificate in those days as you had to pay for it, they had a pink bit of paper with no details on it. You only had to register the birth. I have them for two of my wifes grandparents born in the late 1800's

Mike Fisher
05-07-10, 15:21
Some people had to buy them to prove their age when the old age pension came in (1907 ?)and some had to get copies of their baptism as they were born before 1 Jul 1837

congletonian
05-07-10, 16:12
Thanks Mike so no hope on that route.I've got some certificates from the family but no birth certificate for her.Back to the drawing board I think !!

Liz

JudithM
05-07-10, 16:36
Doesn't help to find who Mary Fletcher's father was but it looks quite possible that the Mary who was Phoebe's mother died (there is a death for Mary Holden in Bolton in Q4 1852, the same quarter that Phoebe was born) and that a second Mary later moved in along with daughter from a previous marriage/relationship, before giving birth to George. This would also explain the relatively large gap between the births of Phoebe and George. I couldn't see a second marriage for Robinson and Mary but they wouldn't be the first couple not to bother about the formalities!
Update - I suppose George's birth cert would show whether he had the same mother as Phoebe or not, and if not would give his mother's (and so hopefully Mary's) surname.

margaretmarch
05-07-10, 17:41
Does anyone know if a couple had to produce their birth certificates when getting married ?? I'm getting nowhere fast in my research into the mystery of my grandad's mother Mary Fletcher(in 1861 census aged 6) and in 1871 census then Mary Holden aged 16.The family all believed she was born Holden by the way but in 1861 she is described as stepdaughter to Robinson Holden who we all thought was her natural father.Some folk may remember my asking for advice on this some time ago?!Robinson and Mary Ann had an older daughter Phoebe born 2 years before Mary and Phoebe's surname is Holden as is her younger brother George born about 1860. Complicated eh!!!

On her marriage cert she says her father is Robinson Holden deceased but she was definitely Fletcher in 1861.I've looked into the Mary Fletchers born about 1855 in Bolton but theycan be traced with both parents on the 1861 census.

Grateful for any advice

Liz

No you don't have to produce anything to get married either to prove your name or your status eg widow or divorcee! it's all taken on trust and the declaration you make.
Margaret

Little Nell
05-07-10, 17:58
I don't know about nowadays, I would think they'd at least look at the marriages index online to see if you are a bigamist!When I got married I had to produce evidence of my address (utlity bill) but I don't recall having to prove I was who I said I was.I suppose originally peeps married in their local parish where the vicar would know them in person and probably baptised them and married their parents. With a growing population in urban areas its much harder for the authorities to keep tabs on you! I do know lots of people gave false addresses or pretended they were living in an area to have the banns called.

margaretmarch
05-07-10, 18:07
The status of daughter on the 1861 census refers to the relationship to the head of the household - in this case Robinson Holder, so Phoebe is his daughter but not necessarily Mary Ann's daughter so I think JudithM is correct in saying Phoebe's mother has most likely died and the Mary Ann Holden in 1861 is 'wife' number 2 who has brought Mary Fletcher with her. The fact that Mary Fletcher becomes Holden in a later census is just the fact that over time she changed her name to match her mother's husband - no formalities would have been needed to make this change.
So getting the birth cert for George might be the only way of moving on as it should technically show his mother as Mary Ann Holden late Fletcher and formerly ??? so you could then look for the Fletcher she married (if indeed she was married) who would be Mary's father.
Margaret

Darksecretz
05-07-10, 22:15
What you need on this is OC, am sure I have heard her talk of 'Robinson Holden' before, maybe she could help you out ??

congletonian
05-07-10, 23:23
Judith thankyou
That's a scenario I hadn't thought of!! Time to spend some more cash on certificates I think.
And thanks also Margaret I think you could be right.I could just get George's certificate first and hope it gives me some info on Mary Ann
Thanks Julie maybe OC will have heard of my Robinson Holden as you say.

Liz

margaretmarch
06-07-10, 15:37
Let us know how you get on, please.
Margaret

congletonian
06-07-10, 16:40
will do Margaret and thanks again for the input.

Liz

Valice in Wonderland
11-07-10, 21:06
I don't think you did have to, my in laws were married 1939 (in UK), it wasn't until much later in life that he had to obtain his birth cert from South Africa, and discovered he'd been born a year later than he thought and it was a day different too.