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Drama at the dublin registrar's office

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Drama at the Dublin  Registrar’s Office

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Surprise E-mail  <ul><li>“ Did Alexander Lockhart and Margaret Agnew have a son John? who died young age 23? </li></ul><ul...

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My response:  Yes <ul><li>John was a medical student at Queen’s University  in Belfast </li></ul><ul><li>He died age 23 in...

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Drama at the dublin registrar's office

  1. 1. Drama at the Dublin Registrar’s Office
  2. 2. Surprise E-mail <ul><li>“ Did Alexander Lockhart and Margaret Agnew have a son John? who died young age 23? </li></ul><ul><li>If you are still on this thread please contact me at chuftier @ eircom.net” </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Cecile Mulcahy </li></ul>
  3. 3. My response: Yes <ul><li>John was a medical student at Queen’s University in Belfast </li></ul><ul><li>He died age 23 in Belfast </li></ul><ul><li>I have all available information for him, including death registration </li></ul><ul><li>Why are you asking? Who could possibly be interested? </li></ul>
  4. 4. John Lockhart, abt. 1883
  5. 5. Story from Cecile : <ul><li>She is a professional researcher in Ireland </li></ul><ul><li>Has client, Kevin Lockhart, in USA </li></ul><ul><li>Kevin’s grandfather, Edward John Lockhart, came to USA in 1909 </li></ul><ul><li>She found out that his parents were John Lockhart and Maud McDonald </li></ul>
  6. 6. Birth registration – N. Dublin December 28, 1886
  7. 7. Birth details <ul><li>Child: - male, no name given </li></ul><ul><li>Born 28 December, 1886 </li></ul><ul><li>Rotunda Hospital, Dublin </li></ul><ul><li>Father – John Lockhart, deceased </li></ul><ul><li>Mother, Maud Lockhart, formerly McDonald </li></ul>
  8. 8. “ Marriage” of John Lockhart and Maud McDonald <ul><li>Her search led to very unusual results </li></ul><ul><li>John Lockhart “nearly” married Maud McDonald in November, 1886 </li></ul>
  9. 9. Very sceptical - how does that connect to “my” John Lockhart ? <ul><li>This was all in Dublin - John lived and died in Belfast </li></ul><ul><li>Could have been other “John” Lockhart’s </li></ul><ul><li>And – by the way - what does “nearly married” mean?? </li></ul>
  10. 10. Marriage registration – sort of
  11. 11. Unusual Marriage Registration <ul><li>Bottom section not completed </li></ul><ul><li>Lines struck through the entry state: </li></ul><ul><li>“ Cancelled owing to Miss McDonald being a minor by 6 days” </li></ul><ul><li>So this marriage was not, in fact, a valid marriage </li></ul>
  12. 12. Any rationale for connection to my Belfast Lockhart’s ? <ul><li>To my surprise – yes. </li></ul><ul><li>Father of John Lockhart given as Alexander Lockhart, Solicitor </li></ul><ul><li>Cecile correctly determined that there was only one Alexander Lockhart, solicitor, in Ireland at that time </li></ul><ul><li>So – this John was indeed my grandfather’s brother! </li></ul>
  13. 13. But – why the dramatic stop to the marriage? <ul><li>Did someone show up with her baptismal certificate? </li></ul><ul><li>Was the Registrar just being difficult that day? </li></ul><ul><li>Her mother could have given consent – was she not willing? Why not? </li></ul><ul><li>Did his brother, a law student in Dublin, step in to prevent this marriage? </li></ul>
  14. 14. Even more dramatic - let’s follow the dates : <ul><li>November 6, 1886 – an attempt made to marry </li></ul><ul><li>November 12, 1886 – Maud comes of age </li></ul><ul><li>November 13, 1886 – John dies </li></ul><ul><li>December 28, 1886 – their son is born </li></ul>
  15. 15. John’s death registration
  16. 16. John’s Death Registration <ul><li>13 November, 1886 </li></ul><ul><li>1 Fitzroy Terrace, Belfast </li></ul><ul><li>Medical Student </li></ul><ul><li>Age 23 </li></ul><ul><li>Father – Alexander Lockhart, Solicitor </li></ul><ul><li>Cause of death: </li></ul><ul><li>Fever – 15 days </li></ul>
  17. 17. But - the dates overlap <ul><li>With a fever of 15 days John was ill while in Dublin </li></ul><ul><li>As a medical student did he realize he might die? </li></ul><ul><li>Was he trying to have his child legitimized and his wife provided for? </li></ul><ul><li>Why did they wait so long? </li></ul>
  18. 18. Picture the scene: <ul><li>Maud is very pregnant </li></ul><ul><li>They are in the Registrar’s office, not a church, desperate to complete this marriage </li></ul><ul><li>Her mother is evidently not present </li></ul><ul><li>John is feverish </li></ul>
  19. 19. Something happened! What?? <ul><li>We can imagine various scenarios </li></ul><ul><li>Will we ever know? Probably not. </li></ul><ul><li>Did John’s parents ever know? Likely not </li></ul><ul><li>Did John’s brother, Henry, the law student, step in to help Maud & the baby afterwards? (or is he the culprit?) </li></ul><ul><li>Still seeking the baby’s baptismal registration to determine names of witnesses </li></ul>
  20. 20. Could Harlequin give us a more dramatic story? <ul><li>Lesson learned: </li></ul><ul><li>Never change your email address – others still find your old message board inquiries </li></ul><ul><li>Respond to all emails, even if they seem completely far-fetched </li></ul><ul><li>Believe that long lost relatives can be found - even if you never knew to look for them </li></ul>
  21. 21. A Happy Ending <ul><li>Maud married 4 years later </li></ul><ul><li>Edward John came to the USA and married, leaving many descendants </li></ul><ul><li>Kevin is thrilled to find me – plus my 20 years of family research </li></ul><ul><li>Of course – he only took up genealogical research last year  </li></ul>

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