Doubting Another Thomas

I happened upon a Shared Tree mix-up a few days ago and it has taken a lot of source searching to resolve.

Thomas, son of Thompson, had been married off to the wrong woman. This situation seems to have been allowed to stand for a few years and, as this Thomas had no sources attached to him, I made some changes. You will now find Rose Hannah’s children with a different father.

If enough living representatives of the families SAWDEN and SAWDON were to be DNA tested it might be found that they are quite distinct lineages. In the imperfect world we inhabit, the variant spellings are haphazardly applied. “Screenshot Thomas” married Florence SAWDON (Free BMD). She had two daughters and the GRO Index entries both give “Sawdon” as the Mother’s Maiden Surname.

Florence signed her name in the St Mary’s register –

The witnesses were siblings of Thomas. The full entry gives us their father’s name.

If you look for Thomas in FamilySearch Sources you will be given this –

Look further down the list and you will see the other Thomas tied to Rose Hannah – and with parents Thomas and Ann, not Thompson and Rachel.  (The illustration below is generated by a search for Thomas born in Towthorpe and three of the children listed in the top hit have the family name SODON in the GRO Births Index. Thomas is clearly a Sawdon in the Wetwang cum Fimber baptism register. On 21 April 1867, the family was resident at Dale Cottages, Wharram Percy. Towthorpe is mid-way between this village and Wetwang.)

Florence is buried in St Oswald’s churchyard and the inscription remembers her first child, Pearl.

Townscape 61 · Crescent Gardens



On the 3rd July 1882 Charles Henry SAWDEN, a bricklayer, suffered a serious accident while taking down scaffolding. The next day it was his mother’s 52nd birthday.

Annie Banks was about twenty when she married Abel SAWDEN, ten years her senior. I haven’t yet determined how many children they had together. So far I have found five in the GRO Online Index, there are seven in Filey Genealogy and Connections and four baptisms (at least) recorded on FamilySearch Tree. You will know by now that the FST System’s plucking of baptismal records from the old IGI is a Make Work Project for anyone who may feel obliged to do some pruning. In twenty minutes or so I found that Abel had six duplicate IDs and Annie five. Abel’s extra one was his own baptism, the shared others his marriage to Annie and the christenings of four of their children – Alfred, Arthur Jabez, Charles Henry and John William. There may be more dupes but this is what you see when you search for Abel on FST.


The eagle eyed among you may already have noticed that I searched for Abel’s birth in 1821 and the one record that strongly matched my search terms confidently gives his baptism in 1819. The Monumental Inscription in St Oswald’s Filey, as recorded by both John & Maisie Crimlisk and the fine team of recorders from East Yorkshire Family History Society give “Also of ABEL SAWDEN born July 17th 1821 died Oct 5th 1895”. What to do?

I must say I’m not keen to don gloves and pick up my secateurs but I may have a go tomorrow – and set the timer to see how long the job takes. There must be a million tasks just like it at FamilySearch and my bet is that “the community” is as enthusiastic as I am to get stuck in.

There will be SAWDON/SAWDEN details to add and perhaps more isolated bits of the family to bring together. It could take hours!

My old LaF post had Charles Henry leaving Filey a single man. A chip off the old brick, he married an Annie over ten years younger than himself. I have found three children so far.

Not to be outdone, after his wife died Abel married another Annie, the daughter of John KING, whitesmith, at All Saints  Scarborough on 13th September 1890. Annie 2 was a spinster of full age and the most compelling evidence I have found so far is that she was about sixty years old. Six months after the marriage the census enumerator called and found Abel and Annie together at Rutland House, Rutland Street – but it was Annie Dinah, Abel’s  26 year old daughter. The pair of them departed for the West Riding a short time afterwards. Dinah married Henry SCOTT in Huddersfield in 1893 and Abel died in Sheffield in 1895. I don’t know what happened to the former Annie KING.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe scene of Today’s Image looked very different this morning. (I’m going to stop adding “previous post” from now on.) No Everyboy radiating joy in the world, just a mizzly sky and the distant placid sea dotted with a few small fishing boats (their twin wheel carriages parked up against the Coble Landing wall).