I'm just new back to stalking my dead relatives after a very long break(yay for isolation!) and discovered a letter from my grandfather to my mother in amongst a heap of papers. The letter outlines a few family bits and bobs and ended with the below...
...BUT I have made no mention of my black sheep uncle, he was a rapist they used to call him Whip it Quick. G (my dad, who is no longer with us) has heard of him. All the best...
Now, there are a couple of things to consider - one is that my grandfather just liked to drop the odd hand grenade and see what happened next (this is plausible. He was a bit of a smarty britches. Also, the Whip it Quick business screams "joke" to me).
The next is which side of the family am I looking? My grandfather had one uncle on his maternal side, and he seemed to be a fine upstanding citizen (Publican of the Red Lion in Crick, several kids etc etc) so I have ruled him out.
On his father's side, though, he had four uncles...three of whom have families and seem to be all quite respectable. Uncle #4 though...
I cannot find any mention of him anywhere that match up with the information I have that is probably correct, and since the 1881 census, he's vanished without a trace.
His name is Charles Edward SMITH, born in 1873 in Kilsby in Northamptonshire. His parents are Sidney (or Sydney)SMITH (b. Watford 1840 ish) and Emma KEMP (b. Watford 1842 ish)
So, he's either died between 1881 and 1891, run off and joined the circus (or the navy or something) or he legitimately is the aforementioned Black Sheep.
And now that all the correspondents involved in the wee missive from my grandfather are all no longer with us, I am hoping that wiser heads than mine can help me decide if the grandfather was pulling our collective legs, or if his Uncle Charles was a legit black sheep!
Thank you for your patience wading through all of that!
Results 1 to 10 of 10
Thread: Mysterious Black Sheep SMITH
21-04-2020, 8:54 AM #1
Mysterious Black Sheep SMITH
21-04-2020, 10:12 AM #2
Thatís an unfortunate surname for a search like this!
Have you checked the local papers of the time? Itís possible that he was caught and jailed....
21-04-2020, 7:38 PM #3
- Join Date
- Feb 2006
There is a Charles Edward Smith Northamptonshire who at the age of 40 enlists in the army, he enlisted 9/9/1914, he was discharges as medically unfit on the 24/11/1914, he has a wife Charlotte Florence and children Charlotte Florence and Rosina there address on what is left of his badly damaged papers is 15 Felix Street. This family are on the 1911 census living at 14 Felix Street Bethnal Green London but he states he was born in Northamptonshire maybe worth looking into. Forgot to say he has a finger missing on lest hand so had an accident at some time
21-04-2020, 8:05 PM #4
- Join Date
- Sep 2005
I have had a look to see what I could find, and think that I may have more questions than answers!
Charles Edward was baptised 12 Jan 1873 at Kilsby the son of Sidney & Emma Smith. So that set me off to look for where his birth was registered, as that can often help, and for a while I ran into a brick wall, because I couldn’t find the registration any Charles or Charles Edward Smith, whose mother’s maiden name was Kemp, or indeed the birth registration of his siblings!
Eventually I worked out that Kilsby comes under the Rugby registration district, and then I found the following birth registration:
SMITH, CHARLES EDWARD GRO Reference: 1872 D Quarter in RUGBY Volume 06D Page 535; mother’s maiden name: SUMMERFIELD
When I check the birth registrations of the other Smith children listed in the 1881 census, they all show the same mother’s maiden name.
It is true that there is a potential marriage registration for a Sidney William Smith in 1864 to an Emma Kemp in Northampton, and no marriage registration, (that fits) to an Emma Summerfield. However, there is a marriage in 1868 between Emma SOMERFIELD and Sidney Smith at Daventry April Quarter Vol 3b page 181.
There is a birth registration for an Emma Summerfield in 1841 (Dec quarter Vol 15 Page 231) Daventry registration district, which covers Watford, whose mother’s maiden name was Dodd. Also a baptism at Watford on 26 Dec 1841 the daughter of William and Martha Summerfield.
Finally could this be Charles Edward in 1939:
8 Kenfield Estate, Northampton R.D., Northamptonshire
First name(s) Last name(s) DOB Sex Occupation Marital status Schedule Schedule Sub Number
Charles E Smith 22 Nov 1872 Male Boot Factory Operative Retired Married 54 1
Lizzie F V Smith 25 Mar 1875 Female Unpaid Domestic Duties Married 54 2
You would need to get his birth certificate to see if the DoB matches.
22-04-2020, 4:07 AM #5
22-04-2020, 4:09 AM #6
I will totally give that a look! Getting kicked out of the army after only a couple of months does make you wonder...
22-04-2020, 4:15 AM #7
Hrrrm. I have come across the Summerfield/Somerfield Emma in my travels. I think Emma KEMP might have come up in my early days of looking, and I honestly can't remember what made me stick to KEMP and ignore Summerfield/Somerfield connection. Sidney could well have married *two* Emmas?
I think I will just have to order a birth certificate for Charles and see what happens! Can one now order electronic birth certificates? Or is it still the interminable wait to get them in the mail? Assuming there's still post coming from overseas!
22-04-2020, 6:21 AM #8
- Join Date
- Sep 2005
Yes you can order certificates online, and you can search the early birth birth and death indexes on their site. Their site being the General Registry Office. Their birth index now includes the mother's maiden name. Rather than ordering a traditional certificate you can order a pdf version which is cheaper and comes electronically. However, they haven't yet done that for marriages although they can be ordered on line.
23-04-2020, 1:50 AM #9
10-05-2020, 4:57 AM #10
Well, I am still yet to receive the birth certificate for Uncle Charles! However, I have realised/remembered my grandfather's first name was Charles when he was born then Desmond Charles by the time he got married. Now, my family were notorious for playing fast and loose with names - but the Desmond is a bit of a random inclusion. They normally went for names that were in the family somewhere, and there's no other Desmond's that I've found. Also, his nickname (Wag) is apparently a Warwickshire nickname for Charles, so he was called Charles long enough for that to stick.
I shouted myself a subscription to the British newspaper archives and have discovered that granddad was a bit of a black sheep himself! Loads of petty criminal behaviour as Desmond, and erm. Had to pay maintenance for a child out of wedlock born to a woman who certainly is NOT my grandmother! Shifty. But he was definitely Desmond by 1926 (age - 15 ish?)So, I think I can use that to narrow my search for potentially Black Sheep Charles Edward!
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