A Queenly Godmother

There was a story told by my Belgian grandmother, that she was named after Queen Astrid, who was also her godmother due to a royal tradition. I remember her telling me that as a child, she was once invited to play with the princess, who was of a similar age, but that they fought over … Read more A Queenly Godmother

An Old Car Accident

My mother’s recollections of her grandfather, Eduard LEMMENS, included his involvement in a serious car accident. She believed it occurred in a chauffered car in Switzerland which led to maybe brain damage or a coma but she was not sure. I have since been able to find mention of this accident and the serious injuries … Read more An Old Car Accident

The Hannah Chronicles: Obscene Language

Newspapers are ‘da bomb‘ for finding out information about relatives but it’s important to widen searches for different spellings, variations and even other family members. This time, searching just the name Rollett (it helps that it’s not too common), brought up an article I hadn’t seen before: USING OBSCENE LANGUAGE – Hannah Rollett was charged … Read more The Hannah Chronicles: Obscene Language

The Hannah Chronicles: A Disorderly House

  Hannah Bates/Rollett and William Henry Lamb were not ones to live life quietly it seems. In January of 1886, they were subjects of a raid where it was found they, along with some neighbours, were keeping a ‘disorderly house’. At the Derby Borough Police-court, to-day… Edward and Patience Helmsley, husband and wife were charged … Read more The Hannah Chronicles: A Disorderly House

The Hannah Chronicles: Enter William

It wasn’t too long after the ‘shocking immorality‘ of 1881 that Hannah Bates/Rollett established a relationship with the significantly younger, William Henry Lamb. William’s family had lived in the West End area of Derby for generations and he and Hannah soon set up home in one of the court houses in Willow Row. His parents … Read more The Hannah Chronicles: Enter William