1855 A Scottish Statutory Story

Birth, Marriage, Death

Moderator: Global Moderators

Post Reply
kitkat27
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2020 12:03 am

1855 A Scottish Statutory Story

Post by kitkat27 » Thu Jan 11, 2024 12:55 am

Happy New Year everyone! :D

Found an interesting record (or 2) today, and was told that it was the type of story and tidbit that some people like so I am sharing with all of you.

Its from that wonderful, mythical and sometimes magical year of 1855!
Yes the year that Statutory Registration came into force in Scotland.

To set the scene in the process of my research I came across a child by the name of Adam TURNBULL born 1855.
However there appeared to be 2 records for his birth, both with the same mothers maiden name, but in separate, but bordering, parishes.
(There is only 4 Adam TURNBULL's born in 1855 in Scotland so this is easy to find if anyone wants a look themselves)
So as I had booked a Research day at the Local History Centre (Alloa, great wee office for those who's never been and handy for me) I took a note of it on my sheet and decided to check it out as one of my many many things when I was there.
The fact it was 1855 was a draw in itself as you can never tell what little pieces of information you are going to get, but the fact that there was 2, I was intrigued, was one a cousin? Another child of the same name born to the parents born the same year?
You can never tell just by looking at the transcriptions at home.
I opened both Images... and BINGO I struck gold! (Or at least I got a little excited)
Same child!! Registered in 2 different Parishes.
Childs Birth is the 22nd of April so I suppose by this time of the year everyone still doesn't really know what they are doing, but nobody wants to get fined!

(Hereafter I have used a small amount of my imagination to my illustrate what I can only imagine from the information is what happens next)

So on the 11th of May Father Adam toddles down to the Polmont Registration office and registers this new child. (Their 5th for those interested)
He states the child's name, knows their marriage date, knows his wife is Born in Paisley, knows all the usual things, gets asked how many children they have he says 1 Girl 1 Boy and 2 boys dead. All fine registrar writes it down. Off he toddles home. Done he's not going to get fined or jailed.

However the next day, the 12th of April we find our same Father Adam down seeing the registrar at the Muiravonside office, this time the child Adam is with his father. He gives all the same information, same marriage date, mother born Paisley. Then when the Registrar asks him about other children, he just says 1 Girl 1 Boy. No mention of the 2 boys that didn't make it out of childhood.
Now did the registrar who was not used to all these new questions and doing the job forget to ask this question? Was the TURNBULL family so well known in the parish that because he'd only seen them with 2 kids did he just fill that bit in and not know about the other 2?
My personal theory is that given the baby Adam was present, I would assume that mother was also present (not that I saw this noted on the document) so when asked about the children and being a considerate man and knowing his wife would have (understandably) gotten upset at the mention of her 2 boys he omitted this piece of information?

An interesting piece of history.
One that maybe will tickle your imagination too and can think of other possible scenario's for this, or maybe for the new genealogists out there it will show you that yes sometimes the child is registered twice in separate districts or parishes (sometimes by different people and other times by the same)
At least it was interesting to me, a change amongst the other records of drowning in canals and ditches at sides of Railways today (apparently this lot really don't like to die in their own beds!!)

Let me know what you all think, and any new theorys I can add to my already colourful picture of this family!

KT

Currie
Posts: 3924
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:20 am
Location: Australia

Re: 1855 A Scottish Statutory Story

Post by Currie » Thu Jan 11, 2024 3:37 pm

Hello Kitkat, & Happy New Year.

I doubt that someone would go through the registration process twice unless they had no choice in the matter.

Section XXXVI of the 1854 legislation reads as follows. https://www.google.com.au/books/edition ... frontcover

XXXVI. Every Registrar shall, subject to the Regulations to be made as aforesaid, be and he is hereby authorized and required to inform himself carefully of every Birth and Death which shall happen within his Parish or District, and to learn and register, as soon after the Event as conveniently may be done, and without Fee or Reward, save as herein-after provided, in One of the said Register Books, the Particulars required to be registered, according to the Forms in the Schedules (A.) and (B.) hereunto annexed respectively, touching every such Birth or every such Death, as the Case may be, every such Entry being made in Order from the Beginning to the End of the Book as aforesaid; and in case of the Parish of the Birth being different from the Parish of the Domicil of the Parents of the Child, the Registrar of the Parish of the Birth shall, within Eight Days after the Entry of the Birth in his Register, transmit a Copy of such Entry to the Registrar of the Parish of the Domicil, if known to him, and the Registrar of the Parish of the Domicil shall forthwith transcribe such Entry in the Register of such Parish, and mark on the Margin of such Entry the Name of the Parish of the Birth.

In your case was the parish of birth different from the parish of domicil and could that be the reason for the two entries?

Maybe the registrar who was informing “himself carefully of every Birth and Death which shall happen within his Parish or District,” learned of the birth and came knocking to find out why it hadn’t been registered in”his” district, even though it had already been registered in another.

At the beginning of this old post I made some disparaging remarks about some registrars spending too much time snooping and not enough accurately recording information. Maybe the second Registrar, with the missing information, was one of those?
http://www.talkingscot.com/forum/viewto ... hs#p149000

All the best,
Alan

AndrewP
Site Admin
Posts: 6152
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2004 1:36 am
Location: Edinburgh
Contact:

Re: 1855 A Scottish Statutory Story

Post by AndrewP » Fri Jan 12, 2024 7:36 am

I have 15 'double registrations' in my almost 1000 birth records in my family tree. These were from 1868 to 1933. Normally with these, the wording in the last column is different. In the column where the registrar (or assistant registrar) signs the certificate, it says that it is transcribed from the original certificate, naming that registration district.

One example from mine says in that column: "1889 April 1st at Bathgate signed James Gardner, Registrar. Transcribed at Livingstone April 4th 1899 James Robson, Registrar".

The first certificate has the standard wording "1889 April 1st at Bathgate signed John M Gardner, Assistant Registrar.

In this case the transcribing registrar was not so diligent, he got the first name of the other Registrar wrong, and his job title.

All the best,

AndrewP

WilmaM
Posts: 1874
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2004 10:46 am
Location: Falkirk area

Re: 1855 A Scottish Statutory Story

Post by WilmaM » Sat Jan 13, 2024 12:04 pm

I hadn't thought about the new registrars prowling around to drum up business aspect.

It must have been a bit confusing all round, this new fangled system.
Wilma

Grendlsmother
Posts: 87
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2006 7:25 pm
Location: West Yorkshire

Re: 1855 A Scottish Statutory Story

Post by Grendlsmother » Sat Jan 13, 2024 1:41 pm

My grandmother was registered twice. She was born in HER grandmother's house and registered in that district. Then registered again in the
district where her parents lived.

My grandfather's is even more interesting - only registered once, but with the wrong first name and the mother's maiden name also incorrect. although her forename and date and place of marriage are correct. I think perhaps my G.Grandfather had been wetting the baby's head!
I suspect that when he visited the office he had my grandfather's brother with him, who was only one year older. G.Grandfather was probably having a good chat to the registrar and when asked "What's the baby's name" gave the name of the brother who he possibly had with him. As for the mother's maiden name, there has always been difficulty with this and despite year's of research and asking for assistance on this site, it has never been resolved. However, it was usually consistant (marriage, several children's births etc. but there is no record of her birth or that of her sister - both post 1855). To add to all this, grandfather's death certificate gives a completely different mother and on investigation it proved
to be that belonging to the birth registered immediately above his. Grandfather's first name is amended by an RCE.
Main lines: McCormick(mack); Connel; Others: McDonald; McFadzean; Brown; Kerr and many more

AndrewP
Site Admin
Posts: 6152
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2004 1:36 am
Location: Edinburgh
Contact:

Re: 1855 A Scottish Statutory Story

Post by AndrewP » Sat Jan 13, 2024 1:48 pm

Grendlsmother wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2024 1:41 pm
My grandmother was registered twice. She was born in HER grandmother's house and registered in that district. Then registered again in the district where her parents lived.
Was your grandmother the first-born by her mother? I have found in my research that in the times when births were normally at home, the first-born was often at the grandmother's house, presumably for grandmother to pass on her wisdom on the subject to her daughter, who would then be able to have subsequent births in her own home.

All the best,

AndrewP

Grendlsmother
Posts: 87
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2006 7:25 pm
Location: West Yorkshire

Re: 1855 A Scottish Statutory Story

Post by Grendlsmother » Sat Jan 13, 2024 5:46 pm

No - she was sixth of thirteen! Her grandmother lived quite near, but in a different district so her mother was probably just visiting for the day
and it all happened very quickly. Or perhaps she just wanted a bit of peace away from all the other kids! But I agree with your comment about 1st borns being born in the grandmother's home.
Main lines: McCormick(mack); Connel; Others: McDonald; McFadzean; Brown; Kerr and many more

Post Reply