Turns out the Ann Maunder who was present at Grace STILING’s death is not the family member I suspected and apparently no relation at all (Read related post HERE).
For some reason, bad transcription I guess, I was unable to find Ann on the 1871 census through name & town alone. Using the find my past address search function, I was able to finally locate Broad Lane on 1871 census and there she was – married to a James Maunder and nearly 50 years younger than the Ann Maunder I expected/hoped her to be.
Ann’s maiden name was Bowden and she married James in 1851.
At least I’ve cleared that up for myself. In other news, I’ve ordered Grace’s son, Edward STILING’s death certificate. Will Ann Maunder appear as witness there too?
Before Harriotte STILING married George WREFORD, she was living in Tiverton with Thomas & Sarah LEAMAN. As she was recorded in the 1841 census as a female servant (‘F.S.’), I presumed she was the LEAMAN’s live-in maid. This may still be true but somehow suspected there was more to this relationship.
(I can’t remember exactly how this suspicion came about but I recently rediscovered a note on my ancestry ‘TO DO’ list to investigate the relationship.)
It turns out that Mrs LEAMAN was actually Harriotte’s sister, Sarah STILING who married the widower, Thomas LEAMAN, Esquire (!) in 1840.
My reasons for accepting this:
John Stiling, yeoman is recorded as father (same as Harriotte’s marriage certificate in 1845)
Edward & Charlotte STILING are witnesses at the marriage – her siblings’ names
A Sarah Stiling was born to John & Grace of West Barton in Tiverton, yeoman (West Barton was Stiling residence for 60 years)
Sadly, the marriage was very short – Thomas died only 3 years later. I was unable to find the couple on the 1851 census but instead came across a mention in The Gentleman’s Magazine that Thomas died June 15, 1843 and had also been the mayor of Tiverton!
Strangely, I have not yet found any other information about this man, other than a note in the next volume of The Gentleman’s Magazine that his sister’s son would change his name as heir of Thomas’ apparent fortune:
I had learnt via the works of Jane Austen that women usually didn’t inherit from their husbands – but it still seemed a little harsh for this young bride. Sarah managed to get back on her feet with a later marriage to Richard BRANSCOMBE in 1849 and was visiting her mother and brother on the night of the 1871 census (retired farmer’s wife). It’s always nice to find evidence that families stayed in each other’s lives.
Find out more about Mayor Thomas Leaman and his premature death
I’ve had a lot of trouble finding a marriage between John STILING and Grace FREED and thought it was due to the lack of Devon records on the IGI. Thanks to the selection of Devon Parish records on findmypast, I find it’s possibly because it was mistranscribed or that Grace FREED is actually Grace BROCK:
I can imagine how Brock and Freed could look similar in faded, pre-regency period handwriting. This was one of three John STILINGs that came up in the search but the only one with a Grace for a bride. Their oldest child was born in 1811 so the dates also fit. Oh, how I wish I could see the original record right now.
Ancestry have now released the National Probate Calendar (1861-1941) which is almost like an index to wills. A distant relative who has worked with me on my STILING line gave me the heads up and I checked it out:
STILING John 9 October.
The Will of John Stiling late of Tiverton in the County of Devon Yeoman deceased who died 3 February 1862 at Tiverton aforesaid was proved at Exeter by the oath of Edward Stiling of the Parish of Tiverton aforesaid Yeoman the Son one of the Executors.
Effects under £600.
[handwritten underneath] Resworn at the Stamp Office Feb 1865 under £450.
I believe this to be my John STILING for the following reasons:
he dropped off the census after 1861
wife declared a widow on the 1871 census
recorded living at Tiverton since 1811 (son Edward’s birth)
has son Edward STILING
farmer (yeoman) since 1841 census
This is the first time I had even come close to a death date for John STILING so I was very pleased indeed to see this entry.
I used ancestry to look further into the son mentioned, Edward STILING and found what appears to be his will too. The entry contained: formerly of Barton but late of Tiverton Farmer died 16 Feb 1873 at Tiverton – Elizabeth Daw, widow, his sister executrix.
Not only do I have a death date but also a daughter of John that I was unaware of until now.