In 1848, George Wright PALMER married Mary Ann ALLEN in the parish church of Gillingham, Kent (St Mary Magdalene). George was a gunner in the Royal Navy and Mary was a carpenter’s daughter. Here is the certified copy of their marriage entry ordered from the GRO (click on the images to see a larger version):
George Wright PALMER and Mary Ann ALLEN marriage certificate – 1848
The next image is of the marriage entry from the Gillingham Parish Church records:
George Wright PALMER and Mary Ann ALLEN marriage entry -1848
I am lucky enough to be able to view the parish records on the Medway Council’s City Ark website. These images have been published as part of the ‘Medway Ancestors’ project, thanks to a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund. If you have ancestors in the Medway district – it’s well worth a look.
Again, I now have my ancestor’s signatures, as well as that of Mary Ann’s father, William Henry ALLEN. Fortunately in this case, the certificate was an accurate copy of the actual marriage entry. You may however find otherwise. If family historians ever have the opportunity to check parish records, they should. One small transcription error can lead to years of frustration. The information gleaned from these have been known to break down ‘brick walls’ in the past.
And hey, even if the information is the same, at least you’ll have your ancestors’ signatures or marks.