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  1. #1
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    Default William Dodd in Mapledurham

    I hope I've posted this in the right place...apologies if not as this could cover several of the forum topics.

    I am trying to identify my 3rd G-Grandfather. I know that my 2nd G-Grandfather's name was William Dodd (b1814, Mapledurham, Oxon) and that his mother was Mary Dodd (b1796, Mapledurham)...I understand that William (1814) was one of at least 5 illegitimate children that Mary had, so I would like to find out who the father is...and subsequently what our real family name is!

    I have obtained the marriage and death certs for William (1814). The marriage cert (William's second marriage) stated that his father was also called William Dodd!?

    From looking on familysearch I found some entries which showed that Mary's own father was also called William Dodd (b1765, Mapledurham) and his father (Mary's G-Father) was also called William Dod!

    I have emailed the records office for Oxfordshire they were kind enough to check the Poor Law Indexes for Mary and all of her children but unfortunately found no records of bastardy bonds, removal orders, settlements or apprenticeships which might have shown a father's name. I've also done a high level search in the National Archives website for wills for "Dodd" but didn't come up with anything in the local area...so I'm a bit stuck about how best to proceed from here.

    I was thinking that I could try and get more detail about the birth of William (1814) and his siblings to see if any info on the father was recorded (nothing in familysearch.org). I'm guessing this would require a trip to a records office to view parish records? Plus I was going to try and obtain a marriage cert for William's first marriage to see if that had any more info.

    Also regarding the info on the marriage cert...given the uncertainty over the father(s) of Mary's children how likely is it that the father's name on the marriage cert likely is genuine? I'm not sure what the common practice was in those time when the father was unknown/unwilling to be named...could it just be William's own name repeated or is it likely to be his Grandfathers name...or on a more sinister level, could Mary's own father actually be William's father!???

    Any advice or hints about how best to move forward would be gratefully received.

    Thanks,
    Martin

  2. #2
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    Oxfordshire FHS have transcribed the Mapledurham PRs onto CD and they are available to purchase online. If William's ancestors hailed from there, the transcripts could be a big help to you. Unless you are lucky and there is a note of the reputed father against William's baptism or the father's surname occurs as one of his christian names, I think it is going to be very difficult for you to ascertain who his father is especially as you have already been in touch with the Record Office re bastardy bonds, etc.

    Janet

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    I would recommend visiting Oxfordshire Record Office in preference to buying transcriptions. There is nothing better than the original record with all the marginal scribbles that may or may not have been transcribed. A trip to Oxford from Bracknell shouldn't be too gruelling

    Also I've no idea how exhaustive the "check" that the RO did might have been in practice. It sounds as if they just checked indexes and I don't know how comprehensive their indexing might be. It would be useful for you to revisit that little project when you're there.

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    Thanks for the replies...I agree I think that a trip to the Records Office (my first time!) might be the best approach. I think I'll try and get as much information about William and his siblings as I can in the hope I can find some information that is consistent across all or some of them...I think it's a long shot though.

    I'm not 100% certain how exhaustive the RO's search was but I think it was reasonable as they found out that one of Williams brtothers died less than a year after birth.

    On a side note. William's own death certificate stated that he died in November 1875 when he was accidently run over! Does anyone know where I might be able to find out some more information about this event? Are there any newspapers or more detailed records (ideally held online) that might have reported this?

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