Registered at birth as Hester Frances, Esther SHERGOLD is the grandmother of Vena Beatrice SMALL, wife of Corporal Robert HARRISON (Saturday’s post). The area around Wilton in Wiltshire was a hotbed of Shergolds in the 19th century.
In 1861 Hester is seven years old and described in the census as “daughter of Housekeeper”. Her widowed mother, Ann, has two other children with her in the household of John TRIGLE, an agricultural labourer and a widower.
The GRO Births Index entry for Tom Shergold (1846) gives his mother’s maiden surname as THORN; for younger sister Sarah Ann (1851) it is THORNE. Hester’s mother is not named in the GRO Index. This is usually an indication that the child is illegitimate.
The search for Ann’s dead husband brought these two marriages –
John Trigle had three motherless children in the house kept by Ann Shergold in 1861 and the Births Index affirms that his wife’s maiden name was Everett.
The first sight I had of Emanuel Shergold was on the FamilySearch Tree.
This Emanuel died in 1859, Charlotte fifteen years later. “Just Jane” in the screenshot is Charlotte’s daughter by an unknown father, born before marriage to Emanuel and, I suspect, unwisely married off to stepbrother James because she is described in the 1851 census (HO107 Piece 1848 f.115 p.15) as Emanuel’s “daughter in law”.
The Emanuel who married Ann in 1846 died towards the end of the following year, when his son Tom was about a year old.
And yes, dear reader, John Trigle married his housekeeper in 1864. In 1881 they are enumerated in Church Street, Stapleford. John, 58, works the fields and Ann takes in laundry. The 1891 census indicates that Ann has ceased work but John labours on at the given age of only 66.
Ann’s youngest child made her way to London and in 1880 (as Esther) married Gilbert SMALL, a policeman, in Camberwell. They had eleven children. Second daughter Lydia Vina (or Vena) did not offer her maiden name when registering the birth of Viena Beatrice Small in the first quarter of 1905, or give the father’s name when the child was baptised (as Vena Beatrick in transcription) at Charlton Near Dover, Kent (19 January).
“Beatrice V Small” married Robert Harrison in Scarborough in 1931 and in 1950, three years after Robert’s death, “Vena B” married Cyril HARDWICK in Filey St Oswald’s. This stone marks her grave in the churchyard…
In loving memory of VENA BEATRICE, dearly loved wife of CYRIL HARDWICK
and a dear mother, fell asleep 16th March 1976 aged 71.
‘Gone from our home
but not from our hearts’