Hi I am trying to trace my late husband's family and I believe that his grandmother was Annie Thomas, born in St Just in about 1885. Can any one help with any information on her. If it is the right Annie she married a William Cooke, but I dont have any information about where or when they met and married. Thanks for any help you can offer. Ali C
Wow! Thanks for the really quick response. I know that it was William Charles Cooke so that looks promising, but have no idea about the Cardiff connection. The family lived in Tottenham, North London until 1950's and then moved to Bishop's Stortford in Herts.My father in law, Norman (Annie's son) was born in Penzance in July 1916, but nobody knew until he passed away and there were no other relatives to ask. My late husband (Paul) remembers visiting a relative one year on holiday, the name he recalled was Pengelly and I believe they farmed somewhere in the Lamorna area. Paul and his parents came down to Cornwall every year on holiday but I dont know if they contacted any other relatives.
Post by Cornish Terrier on Oct 23, 2016 5:56:50 GMT -5
Hi Ali and Welcome to Penwith Genealogy.
I believe that his grandmother was Annie Thomas, born in St Just in about 1885
What is the source of your information about Annie and, in particular, just how accurate do you think it might be? The reason I ask is partly because of the possibilities Polly has suggested. If Annie was married in Wales then to say she was born at St Just might have been merely generalizing given that is a place that would be well known. Her supposed birth year could also be out by a couple of years or so dependant on the source.
Another way that might help identify Annie could be through her husband. Do you have any details on the death of William Charles and Annie Cooke? When and where they died could lead to information that will enable us to work backwards to find Annie.
If you are able to add anything based on my suggestions please do so and I will make another attempt at finding Annie for you.
As I'm cut & pasting this in, I see that my post is crossing with CT's; but I don't think it conflicts with it.....
I can see Annie's death in the B Stortford RD September Q 1967 age 82; Wm C preceding her in March Q 1954 age 66, so birth year c1888!.
Interestingly, between 1875 & 1895 there are only 17 births for a William Charles Cooke - & one happens to be in the Penzance RD! December Q 1887. That is a match.
You probably already know this, & I appreciate it isn't Wm Cooke that you are enquiring about.... but 1891 census shows what looks like this chap him at age 3 is in Penzance, father a musician born in Bury St Edmunds Suffok, mother born Hertfordshire. That might be an indication of a family with a propensity to travel.... and a reason for Wm & Annie being back in the Penzance RD around the time of son Norman's birth 1916.
Norman's father was of prime WW1 service age, so finding his service records might tell you quite a bit, if you don't already have them. FamilySearch has possible 1915 Cardiff then 1919 London brief record references that could be him.... And 1911 there is a Wm Cooke born Penzance age 23 in Tredegar S Wales....
However, I would concur with CT that it is essential to build on firm foundations, rather than go whizzing back in time too quickly, especially with fairly common names where incorrect identifications can readily be made.
So, if you could help us by telling all you know (or rather, can reasonably put in the public domain!) about Norman's parents e.g. occupation etc., & the source of that information, it would be good.
Thanks to everyone for your comments. Any information is greatly received as I have so little to go on.
The mystery was why Norman was born in Penzance when the family appeared to be London based. It was assumed that Annie came back to Cornwall to have her baby which might tie in with Sue's comments about WW1. William (Norman's Dad) was a hairdresser, and Norman had 2 brothers I think called William and Thomas, but I dont know if they were younger or older. Like many families there was a fall out with one of the brothers. The Annie and William death dates fit with what I have, I have a copy of Annie's death certificate and details of the gravestone showing Williams death.
We all have only a little to go on when starting out!
To summarise my understanding of what you have:
Norman J Cooke was brought up in North London with probably 2 brothers, William & Thomas.
Their parents were William Charles Cooke & Annie Jane Thomas. I'm guessing you know this mainly from documents found when Norman Cooke died, since you say it was then that you found out Norman was born in the Penzance area. (Birth can be seen on FBMD September Q 1916.)
Norman's parents moved to Bishops Stortford in Hertfordshire in the 1950s: their deaths can be found on www.freebmd.org.uk in the Bishops Stortford RD: William C Cooke March Q 1954 age 66 – so birth c1888 Annie J Cooke September Q 1967 age 82 – so birth c1885
PollyQ has found you a marriage between a William C Cooke & an Annie J Thomas in the Cardiff RD March Q 1914.
Now that you say Norman probably had 2 brothers Thomas & William, & bearing in mind the locations we now seem to have of Cardiiff, Penzance & North London, I have just searched FBMD for births to surname Cooke with mother's maiden name Thomas between 1914 and 1934:
That finds me just the one Thomas nationally : Thomas S Cooke in the March Q 1915 Cardiff RD.
There are 3 Williams, all in 1922, born Edmonton, Leigh & Monmouth. I'd be thinking the chap born in Edmonton would probably be of interest to you, what with Tottenham being in that RD, and William's middle initial being “C”....
Then on familysearch.org/ we have indexing of WW1 service records 1915 Cardiff then 1919 London, which look promising; I believe the detailed service records are viewable on either ancestry.co.uk/ or findmypast.co.uk/, which are pay websites. If you are in the UK, one can usually access Ancestry at your local public library (with library card); alternatively both websites often have a short window of a few days around 11 November when everyone can access armed service records from home.
As you know Norman's father William C Cooke was a hairdresser, these service records could be helpful in mentioning occupation – & also Next of Kin.
Then I would also suggest you get to view the 1911 full census entry (either Ancestry or FindmyPast) where there is a possible entry of interest Wm Cooke born Penzance age 23 in Tredegar S Wales.... that will give you an occupation as a minimum.
I may be mistaken in considering the musician Cooke family in Penzance 1891 census www.freecen.org.uk/ as a feasible candidate to be the family you're after, but I note that, in addition to there being just the one birth nationally for a William Charles Cooke that is an exact match for Norman's father per his recorded death age i.e. birth Penzance RD December Q 1887 which looks very much like the young William in this family, that William C Cooke's younger brother is one Thomas Sylvester Cooke.... now what was the name of that Cooke child born in Cardiff a year after the 1914 marriage PollyQ found???
The remains of this family are still in Penzance 1901.
Oooh, this is getting interesting: I can see the eldest son in this musician family, in 1901 enumerated where he proves his mother's maiden name..... then later crossing the Atlantic.... but you will want to find some of this for yourself, and besides, you need to firm up the identity of Wm C Cooke born c1888 first.......
(And P.S. I think I can see the 2 later life events for Thomas S Cooke 1915, putative brother of your William C Cooke, in the Edmonton RD: married 1942, died 6 months later age 28. Again, this is a possibility only, but circumstantially promising.)
But we still haven't discovered how you know Norman's mother Annie Jane Thomas was born St Just...........?
Post by Cornish Terrier on Oct 25, 2016 6:12:51 GMT -5
You all seem to be moving along quite well with this query so for the moment I will get on with other things and just keep an eye on what is happening. If I see something that I might be able to help with I will do so or if you get stuck and think I can help then just 'shout'.
Hi Sue You have been amazing, that is so much information. I will investigate it further based on the details you mention but it looks like the right Thomas as his middle name was Sylvester. Thanks for the wonderful support and forall the help. AliC