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  1. #1
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    Default Sarah Alice Bowles 19/4/1897

    Hello Forum Members
    It’s been a while since I last used this site to uncover my grandfather’s military history, and at that time I was most grateful for the help and information given. I am now trying to unravel another piece of family lore, but have hit a brick wall, so, once again I’m hoping someone out there can help.
    Some distant cousins and I have been trying to confirm the parentage of my 2nd cousin, 2x removed, Dorothy (Dolly) Bowles – Born 6/8/1888 at 16 Sydenham Terrace, Bath and emigrated to Canada around 1910. She was well known by the parents of one of the cousins I have spoken to, and I have her birth certificate.
    Her Mother, Sarah Alice Bowles (B 19/4/1867 in Bethnal Green, D July 1910 Bath Somerset) was reputed to have married David Codrington Selman (B 19/8/1856, Prof of Maths and Engineering at Bristol Uni, Lecturer Bath Uni 1887/8, Member of Inst of Civ. Eng. from 25/7/1887, Member of Inst Mech. Eng. up to 28/9/1892) and the birth cert bears this out, although Sarah’s name is shown as Maud Alice Bowles. I am assured that this is the same person.
    However, the surnames of both Sarah and Dorothy remain Bowles after 1888, and following Sarah’s remarriage in Oct 1892, Dorothy is referred to as “Niece” in the censuses!
    So the problems are:
    1 I can find no trace of Sarah or David in the 1881 or 1891 censuses
    2 I can find no trace of any marriage certificate and suspect that none exists.
    3 I can find no trace of any death records for David, despite him being a person of some prominence.
    The family story suggests that David drowned at sea while returning from France where he had been assisting in building the Eiffel Tower!
    If anyone can offer any help in locating the missing documents, or suggesting where I might look, I would be most grateful.
    Regards
    Mike Bentley

  2. #2
    Brick wall demolition expert!
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    My first thought was to look for a will of David Codrington Selman...I would have expected a man of that importance would have left a will, but I can not see one in the probate calenders.

    I also couldn't find any trace of him in England, but did find he took an appointment in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia in November 1892. If Passenger lists exist, then it would be worth checking to see if he travelled alone or with Sarah Alice.
    Michelle

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    Super Moderator christanel's Avatar
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    On Trove newspapers
    Mon 21 Nov 1892 Page 7 Governmet Gazette.
    The undermentioned gentlemen have been appointed to the positions in the technical education branch of the Department of Public Instruction set opposite their names: — David Codrington Selman, A.M., Inst. C.E., Wh. Sc., assistant superintendent of technical education.
    Christina
    Sometimes paranoia is just having all the facts.
    William Burroughs

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    Super Moderator christanel's Avatar
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    There is a death of a David Conrad Selman in Bristol in 1904, age 49, but I can't see a birth for a David C Selman 1854-1859 other than David Codrington Selman and no marriage for a David C Selman any time any place on FreeBMD.
    Christina
    Sometimes paranoia is just having all the facts.
    William Burroughs

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    There is a D Codrington Selman on Ancestry listed as being in New South Wales,Australia in 1892,1893 & 1894. One of the documents has him as Professor Selman. Could be worth investigating

    The document also mentions working in Paris.

    UK, Electrical Engineer Lists, 1871-1930
    SOCIETY & EMPLOYMENT DIRECTORIES

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    Wilkes_ml Many thanks for your very speedy response. I confess that I hadn't considered him emigrating, but I'll follow that hint up.
    Wonder if his emigrating two months after Sarah's marriage?
    Thanks again

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    Christina
    Thanks for the rapid response. I'll have a look at the Gazette entry you mention.
    I, too have found the info re David Conrad Selman, but I'm sure it's a blind alley. The Selman family was quite extensive in that area at that time. I'm also following up a lead in NSW, Austarlia.
    Thanks again
    Mike

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    Pamela
    Many thanks for your rapid response. I have also been given a hint about Australia which I'll be following up, so your post ties in nicely. Still cant find any entry for him in 1881 or 1891 censuses (? spelling). As far as I can see, he should have appeared on both, as should Sarah.
    Thanks again
    Mike

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by christanel View Post
    There is a death of a David Conrad Selman in Bristol in 1904, age 49, but I can't see a birth for a Conrad C Selman 1854-1859 other than David Codrington Selman and no marriage for a David C Selman any time any place on FreeBMD.
    Christina
    The above death posted by Christina is the right one.

    PoppaB, do you have access to old British Newspapers? There's an artcle in the "Shepton Mallet Journal 13 July 1906"

    Professors Suicide

    In short it says...............David Conrad Selman was found by his landlady Mrs Annie Butt, lying on the floor with a razor by his side, he had a deep wound in his throat. He was age 47 and brother of R Selman a butcher of Blackboy Hill. For the last four years DCS had been blind. Extremely clever student, retired professor, had won scholarships in maths and tech. engineering. Mrs Butt's adress 50, North View, Westbury Park, Bristol.
    Alma

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    Christina
    Another quick note - I have accessed Trove Newspapers and searched for the reference you have quoted, but try as I might, I can't come up with the correct page. Could you possibly send me a link, or a hint on how to find what I'm looking for.
    It's the first time I've searched any Australian Govt records, so I'm a bit lost!
    Thanks
    Mike

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