Doing some research for a friend. However, that research takes me to England and I'm not as familiar with England as the U.S. and until a month or so ago, only has the U.S. version of Ancestry.com. So I went back to the research to see what else might be out there. I got a little further… but this time I also included researching in FamilySearch.org. I use it frequently and almost as much as Ancestry.com, but THIS find was truly receiving help from the other side of the veil!
We know that Matilda Barbara Coggins married a John Oakes and that after his death in 1862 she married a man with the surname of Brown because she bore a son named David Brown who was born in 1864. However, the name of David's father had not been known to the family probably since David was born.
I searched the surname of Brown (VERY common name) so I wasn't sure if anything might be found, added that the name of the wife was Matilda Barbara and left the surname blank as I was not sure how it might be indexed with a maiden name or her married surname.
What came up was a Hamilton Brown married to a Matilda Barbara Parkes… I ALMOST dismissed it, but the year time frame was right, so I thought what the heck. The one that came up in Family Search was the transcribed text from the original document… it didn't have a digital version to view.
When I did find the digital version:
This is what was learned from looking at the actual document:
The person who wrote down Matilda Barbara's name must have HEARD Parkes, but if you look at where Matilda actually signed her OWN name… it's clearly OAKES.
We knew her maiden name was Coggins, but not who her parents were as she was not living with them in 1841. But adding to the validation that this is "OUR Matilda" was the fact that THIS Matilda on the document has a father James Coggins… matching her maiden name. So she WAS using her married surname on the document, but the secretary wrote it wrong, thus the transcriber transcribed it incorrectly.
We also NOW KNOW the name of David Brown's father: Hamilton.
Also revealed is the name of the fathers of both Hamilton and Matilda… and David Brown appears to have been named after his grandfather, whose name was David Brown.
Matilda's father was James Coggins. Both have occupations for the fathers are listed so this will help the research as we begin the next generation back.
How exciting to share this with Marcie… I called her after 9pm when I found it…. she was THRILLED and so was I!
Never assume that something is not the right document based on the transcription only… LOOK for the digital version and let your own eyes and heart decide if the document and information belongs to YOUR family!