* Married to each other twice.

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John1957
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Married to each other twice.

Post by John1957 » 10 Feb 2017 19:07

In my tree I have a William House and Mary Shorter who were married to each other on 19 Oct 1786 in the village of Sutton Courtenay, just south of Abingdon. I then find a William House and Mary Shorter who were married to each other on 11 Oct 1797 in the village of Radley, just north of Abingdon. So I am wondering if this is the same couple. My question being, is there a reason why you would have to get married again if, for instance, you moved to a different area in the late 18th century. Or is this just not possible and this is pure coincidence?

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johnmorrisoniom
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by johnmorrisoniom » 10 Feb 2017 21:56

I have had a similar situation (I thought), but it turned out thus:
John Smith and Jane Doe had a son, John Smith (jnr)
John Jones and Ann Doe had a daughter, Ann Jones

first marriage John Smith (jnr) married Ann Jones

2 years later widower John Smith (snr) married the widow Ann Jones (late Doe) (Luckily this happened either side of a census year, so I could work out which was which)

So the respective children marry, and then later their widowed parents marry

Just a possible explanation for what you have found

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AdrianBruce
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by AdrianBruce » 10 Feb 2017 22:04

How interesting...

Re "is there a reason why you would have to get married again if, for instance, you moved to a different area" - I have never seen any such suggestion.

Further, the Church of England seems to have a positive downer on conducting the same sacrament(?) twice. Children should not be baptised twice (yes, I know it happens, seen it!) - indeed there is a question in the Order of Baptism along the lines of "Has this child been baptised?" - if the answer is yes, then the flowchart skips past the baptism bit. (The Book of Common Prayer doesn't call it a flowchart, of course!) And for funerals I remember seeing a comment in a 1914 burial register relating to the interment of ashes: "the service had already been performed and was not repeated." Obviously, they were at pains to point out that the funeral service had not been done twice.

My completely non-expert view on this is that you don't want to ask God to do the same thing twice: "Accept this child..." "YES - DONE THAT THE FIRST TIME YOU ASKED..."

It would therefore seem unlikely that anyone would knowingly permit the marriage of the same couple twice over.

In that, there are a lot of caveats - e.g. it's well known that couples can be married twice in rapid succession - and no-one knows why. My own GGG granddad Pleass married his second wife twice, a few months apart. Did his in-laws complain about missing the first marriage and prevail on the local priest to marry them again because "No, he hadn't heard them say that they were already married", had he? But 11y is a bit long to wait before you decide that you missed the cake first time round.

If they are the same couple, then maybe they discovered that there was a question over their first marriage: "Your first wife was still alive???" I presume that both ceremonies were Church of England - this was the period of Hardwicke's Marriage Act when marriages were only valid in Church of England, Quaker or Jewish establishments. It would not be impossible that a couple might only have a Catholic wedding and not realise until 11y later that such a marriage was not sufficient for legal purposes. But I would have expected a Catholic priest to tell a couple that his ceremony was only for religious purposes.

I am assuming that you have seen the actual entries and we can thus exclude transcription errors or banns being called but the wedding never taking place. (FamilySearch are liable to index the latter as a wedding - but what else can they do?)

My best guess is that this is a different couple - but the names aren't exactly common are they? I would suggest that you follow up deaths of people of those names - if two such couples die, then it's coincidence but if only one such couple dies, it would suggest that the wedding was repeated. In which case the "something wrong the first time round" theory moves to top of the list in my view.
Adrian

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mjashby
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by mjashby » 10 Feb 2017 22:42

'Though not common, I do have some examples of couples in my own research going through two marriage ceremonies, but these invariably were relatively close together. In a couple of cases the marriages took place on the same day (in both the bride's and bridegroom's parishes which were several miles apart. Another, apparently because the bride was under full age and presumably didn't have parental permission when the couple first married in the groom's parish (the fully completed and signed marriage entry was actually crossed through in the Marriage Register) and the couple then "re-married" around a month later in the bride's own parish when both parties would have been 21 years of age. I also have examples of men having married two women with exactly the same surname and forename.

In your example, that the two marriages were 9 years apart does seem rather unusual if both parties were the same, but it is not impossible if they had their own a reasons for wanting to go through a second ceremony, or if there was any possibility that the first marriage might not have been correctly conducted (possibly resulting in any children being considered illegitimate; and therefore potentially affecting their future inheritance rights). Have you checked whether the couple's signatures on both marriage register entries match (are are sufficiently similar)? Are there any records of Marriage Banns having been read/recorded for the marriages, or was either marriage conducted by Licence, which could reveal more information? Were any of the witnesses to the marriages known relatives? Does the second marriage entry indicate the status of the participants, e.g. Bachelor/Occupation and Spinster?

Mervyn

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davidm_uk
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by davidm_uk » 11 Feb 2017 10:34

Note quite the same but I have two friends (from schooldays) who married, divorced, then remarried (in church) 40 years later. :)
David Miller - researching Miller, Hare, Walker, Bright (mostly Herts, Beds, Dorset and London)

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LornaCraig
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by LornaCraig » 11 Feb 2017 11:51

I'm not sure if this helps much, but according to Familysearch.org the couple named William House and Mary Shorter had five children baptised in Sutton Courtenay between 1787 and 1796. The mother's maiden name is recorded in the baptisms but that does not necessarily imply the couple were not married. A quick search suggests that the vicar/curate at the time recorded the mother's maiden name in all cases of baptisms.

William and Mary House (no maiden name given) then had seven children baptised in Radley between 1798 and 1815.

So there is no overlap in the periods in which the couple(s) had children baptised in the different places, which would have implied they were different couples. Unfortunately it doesn't conclusively prove they were the same.

It is possible that if Mary was very young when she married in 1786 she could still have been having children in 1815, in her late forties.
Lorna

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John1957
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by John1957 » 18 Feb 2017 09:23

Thank you all for taking the time and trouble to reply to my query.

There is a lot to be thinking about here and obviously some more digging on my part is required. But I now have more knowledge on what could of happened. Your replies are much appreciated.

Thank you.
John.

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Gowermick
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by Gowermick » 18 Feb 2017 13:18

Did you happen to watch the latest WDYTYA, with Warwick Davies?
It so happens he had an ancestor that married the same woman twice! The first was a bigamous marriage, and when his 'real' wife died, he married his bigamous wife again, so legalising things for the future!
Mike Loney

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http://www.mickloney.tribalpages.com

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Martin Tolley
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by Martin Tolley » 24 Feb 2017 09:46

Although it probably doesn't apply in this case I have a situation of two people marrying twice, and I found out it's actually a common feature in certain circumstances. In my situation (the mid 1870s) the two were married first in their local church. The groom was in the Royal Artillery, and regulations at the time were that enlisted men had to ask permission to marry before wives could receive the benefits of married quarters, rations etc. He clearly hadn't done this (or didn't know he had to) and before his wife could be made "official" the pair married again some 18 months after their first wedding, but this time in a register office near to the barracks. As I say this was often common practice and a good article about these cases was written by Tom Wood in the October 2005 issue of Family Tree Magazine. I have copy if anyone is interested

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davidf
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Re: Married to each other twice.

Post by davidf » 24 Feb 2017 12:25

I also have an example in my family tree:

Marriages Dec 1913 (>99%)
Surname First name(s) Spouse District Vol Page
Willett Wilfred L Stenhouse Kensington 1a 403
Stenhouse Eileen E J Willett Kensington 1a 403

Marriages Sep 1914 (>99%)
Surname First name(s) Spouse District Vol Page
WILLETT Wilfred L Stenhouse Kensington 1a 402
Stenhouse Eileen E J Willett Kensington 1a 402

The family biography written by one of their daughters reveals that the first was a "secret" registry office wedding and the second was a church wedding in the parish church. The tale is an interesting reflection on attitudes in some parts of early 20th century England.
One day Eileen met Wilfred and told him that she had booked a room at the Russell Hotel ... Wilfred was embarrassed by the suspicious stare of the commissionaire as they entered the lift after dinner. He was sullen and unresponsive when they were alone in the bedroom ...
"We shall have to marry. I've been thinking about it and I'm going to get a licence. You will have to say you're 21. We can be married at Marylebone Registry Office"
"Our parents will be shocked and your allowance will be stopped. You said so."
"We shan't tell anyone. Only you and I will know that we belong to each other. Some day when I'm qualified [as a doctor], we will announce it in The Times ...
Neither Wilfred nor Eileen supposed that their relations would see any cause for a celebration. Mrs Willett had met Eileen, and dislike had been mutual. The Munts [Eileen' step father was Mr Munt] had thought Wilfred a pleasant young man but:
"I understand his people are in trade, dear" [Owners of a large building firm building places like Sloane Square!]
...
Not long after their marriage, Eileen told Wilfred she had taken a bed-sitting room in a street near the hospital ... Wilfred began to realise that Eileen was a much strong character than he had thought.
...
Eileen was 22 on 4 August 1914, the day War broke out. ... the following day he [Wilfred] told her he intended to 'fight for England'.
...
Wilfred said that they had to tell their parents they were married ... 'I don't want to leave England with no-one knowing you're my wife'.
Breaking the news to their parents was traumatic. Mrs Willett had hysterics. Mr Willett was very grave and spoke about ingratitude. Eileen's parents were distressed but consoled because Wilfred would be a professional man.
...
'It was awful,' he [Wilfred] said [talking to Eileen], 'Mater went on and on about deceit and the Fifth Commandment ["Honour thy father and thy mother"]. Finally, she felt so faint that Pater had to help her up the stairs to bed. He came back and said that he was going to see your father today so that arrangements could be made for us to be married 'properly'.
...
A few days later the marriage was arranged by special licence in EIleen's parish church. Eileen told Wilfred that she was to have a new cream dress:
'Mother thinks white would be unsuitable, under the circumstances ...
The marriage, as Wilfred and Eileen agreed, was a dismal affair. Mrs Willett didn't attend. ... But Wilfred was comforted by the service. He had always been a devout Christian, and to have his marriage sanctified dissipated the fleeting guilt he had felt because they were married in a registry office.
Ref: (Seldon, M., 1985, Poppies and Roses, pub Economic and Litery Books, Sevenoaks, pages 8 to 13)

The rest of their remarkable story is summarised on my blog (http://www.faulder.org.uk/genealogy/?p=30) - or you can find a second hand copy of the book (1p + P&P at Amazon https://www.amazon.co.uk/Poppies-Roses- ... +and+Roses)!
David
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