BOTFIELD Family - Shropshire

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HARLOW Claire
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Joined: Thursday, 2-11-2017

Hello, 

I am looking for information regarding my ancestor Emma BOTFIELD born 1857 in Farlow to William and Harriett BOTFIELD as to why she would have brought her youngest son Charles born 1896 ( my great grandfather) to Cardiff when he was very young leaving behind her family.  I am unable to trace any birth/parish register for her only her death certifcate. I visit her grave here in cardiff.

The mystery is that my grandmother Doreen, grew up knowing that her father Charles thought he was an only child and his father was killed. However, I know from records that Emma never married and that all her children's birth certificates dont have a fathers name. Prior to moving to cardiff she lived with her parents, 21 Clee Hills, then 12 Bush Farlow, then workhouse, then Lanes End, Farlow.

I found Emma's brothers family and they didnt know the reason either and we have met in Shropshire and they have also visited us here in wales. So if any of her relatives are able to help me and have any photos of her I would be very grateful.

Kind regards Claire

Michael J Hulme
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Joined: Saturday, 4-06-2011

Hello Claire

Can you tell us why you think Emma BOTFIELD was born 1857 in Farlow because I am not seeing her in the original parish register which can be viewed on the Find my Past (subscription) web site.

Mike

HARLOW Claire
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Last seen: 1 week 18 hours ago
Joined: Thursday, 2-11-2017

Hi Mike,

I have her death certificate and it states she was 75 when she died on 28 may 1932. Census records vary with dob from 1854-1857 . She's proving difficult for me to find her birth and fathers of her children before she came to cardiff. 

Thanks for your help, Claire

Michael J Hulme
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Last seen: 44 min 25 sec ago
Joined: Saturday, 4-06-2011

Hello Claire

In the Baptism Register your Emma is named as Emily daughter of William & Harriet BOTFIELD of Oreton Common, Stottesdon baptised 23 July 1854. Father's occupation is Limer.

Oreton Common is a short distance south of Oreton village and there is a Lime Works and Quarries between the two.  Whilst it is not named, you can find Oreton Common on this map immediately below the New Inn where the horizontal line goes across the image.  You can zoom in and out and move around to see the local area.

I notice that the 1861, 1871 and 1881 census all show Emma as born Stottesdon between 1854 and 1857 whereas the 1891 census gives Farlow.  I haven't found her in 1901 or 1911.

Looking at the Shropshire Baptisms on Find my Past there are several listed in the index without a father's name which is a good clue to those born to a single woman as follows:-

16 Oct 1873 Thomas BOTFIELD mother Emma
21 Mar 1880 William BOTFIELD mother Emma
17 Jul 1882 Ann BOTFIELD mother Emma
1 Mar 1888 Edwin BOTFIELD mother Emma
4 Dec 1893 Josiah BOTFIELD mother Emma
15 Jan 1897 Charlie BOTFIELD mother Emma

To have six illegitimate children over a 24 year period must be quite unusual and one wonders how she managed to support herself and the children over all that time.  I can't help feeling we are missing something here but at the moment I don't know what.

You might like to try looking for school admission records for the local school in the hope that something turns up.  Likewise there should be records for the time she was in the workhouse if you can locate them and again its impossible to know what they may tell you.  The workhouse would probably try to get money from the father of any children taken to the workhouse so that is a good reason to explore that route.  It will probably mean trips to Shropshire Archives to explore school and workhouse records.

Mike

HARLOW Claire
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Last seen: 1 week 18 hours ago
Joined: Thursday, 2-11-2017

Thanks Mike.

I seen the entry for Emily BOTFIELD but wasn't sure if it was her as on all her childrens birth certificates it states Emma as her name. It may be she preferred to be called Emma then Emily? Her mothers middle name is Emma too. Also it stated her age as 75 when she died which made me question it but actually if she didnt want to be found then she potentially could have lied about her age. I was too late to request her medical file as it had already been destroyed.

I did wonder why she stayed with her parents with her children until her last child 'charles' and made her way to cardiff and yet all her siblings moved out. Its all very strange.

I tried looking for the workhouse details but unable to find anything. I've looked on the shropshire archives and seen you can request a quote for papers to be digitised and sent to you but the issue i have is that i dont know whether or not she or her family are mentioned! Think you may be right in that I have to visit the archives and see what they can help me with.

I do appreciate all the time you have invested in helping me : ) 

HARLOW Claire
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Last seen: 1 week 18 hours ago
Joined: Thursday, 2-11-2017

Hi Mike,

I received the GRO Birth Certificate for Emily BOTFIELD 1854 and although her parents are William and Harriett , it doesnt appear to be Emma's parents as Harrietts maiden name is jones and I know Emmas mother was OWEN. So the mystery continues!  : )