Thursday, August 11, 2016

Once a Tidball, always as Tidball?

Once found in Bristol in the 1861 Census of England, the Tidball family was rather easily traced. You see, English civil registration records (1839-forward) and English church records (going back much farther) are a genealogist's dream.

William Tidball, 32, married Mary Ann Bisgrove, 29, 6 March 1855, at the parish church of St. Philip and Jacob in Bristol. The marriage registration names their fathers: Michael Tidball and William Bisgrove. Mary Ann, 41, died 9 May 1865 in the St. Philip and Jacob district. English death registrations did not record the parents or birthplaces of the deceased, but Mary Ann's registration did name her husband, William, a maltster's labourer.

William had four young children -- Elizabeth, Thomas, John, and Michael -- all age 10 and younger -- and needed a wife. Age 44, he married 40 year-old Elizabeth Selina Morrish 7 June 1866 in the parish church of St. Mary, Redcliff. She was the daughter of a shoemaker, Samuel Morrish.

The 1861 and 1871 censuses stated that William was born in Brushford. With the ages reported in the censuses and the marriage registrations, the target is a William born at Brushford about 1821-23. Actually, the target is a baptism record, because civil registration records date from only 1837.

Indeed, William, the son of Michael and Eleanor Tidboald, was baptized 14 April 1822 at Brushford. Tidboald, eh?

What about William's childhood and early adult years? The first Census of England in 1841 found William and seven younger siblings with their parents, Michael and Ellen, on East Nightcott Farm.

William enlisted at Bristol in the 34th Foot in October 1846, and was discharged April 1848.* In 1851, he was a servant a few miles away in the home of his Uncle Gregory at Poole Farm in Knowstone, Devon. He was 30 years old and single.

What happened to the rest of the Bristol Tidballs?  Elizabeth married Edward Jennet; she died in 1885 in St. George, Gloucestershire. Michael died in 1892 in St. Philip and Jacob, Bristol. William Tidball's second wife, Elizabeth, died 4 May 1892 in St. Philip and St. Jacob. William died 28 January 1899 -- supposedly only 73 years old.

Brushford, Somerset, parish church
On a trip to England in 2009, we attended "Mothering Day" Sunday services at Brushford. The Tidballs are not remembered there, but their presence was keenly felt.

The blogger will probably take a break from the Tidballs, or whoever they were, next week because he will be traveling to Arlington, Washington, to speak at the Northwest Genealogy Conference. One of his talks deal with DNA and the Fawkners -- remember them? If a blog gets written, it might well be a DNA research story.


*Depot Rolls of the 34th Foot (Cumberland) for the period 1838-1873,” transcription viewed at, October 2009. The author has not viewed the original depot roll. The transcription indicates William Tidball, 20 years, six months old, was born at Brushford. This would make his estimated birth date April 1826. The William Tidball that enlisted is believed to be the same man because only one William Tidball was baptized at Brushford during this time period.

No comments:

Post a Comment