Today I have chosen Emily as my 52 Ancestors entry of the week. I find Emily to be a bit of a mystery and part of that is what her surname was which is why the title has so many names listed.
I first found out about Emily when I received a copy of my Great-Grandfather's birth certificate. He was born Henry James John WYATT on 5 February 1899 in New Tredegar, Gwent, Wales. Emily registered his birth herself and gave her name as Emily Beatrice WYATT formerly PIKE. So off I went and found Her with Henry and his father Absalom WYATT in the census of 1891. Absalom WYATT was a pretty unique name so that bit was easy but by 1911 Emily had and Absalom had changed his name just to trick us.
That single entry for Emily in 1901 tells us that she was listed as married and using her 'husbands' surname, we are told that she was 26 so would have been born circa 1875 in Crediton, Devon, England.
|1901 Wales Census - Class: RG13; Piece: 4942; Folio: 97; Page: 15.|
I have obtained birth certificates for four Emily's 9 children as well of baptismal records for 6 of them. Each of the birth certificates I have were registered by Emily but she gives different information on her maiden name each time.
|Emily's name as given on 4 birth certificates by herself. From Left to Right: 1894, 1896, 1897, 1909|
I have searched for Emily many times over the past few years but have never found a marriage for herself nor Absalom. This has left me wondering if they didn't marry at all or if they had married while he was still in the Army and but the entry never appeared in the marriage index for military marriages either. Apart from what we can deduce form her children's births and a single census, the only other documentation that shows she existed is her death certificate in December 1909. She died from Antipaitum Haemorrhage Syncpoe which I believe to be that she passed out (syncope) as a result of blood loss, most likely a miscarriage as the last child born was in November 1908 (birth registered January 1909). She was only 35 years old.
There are 2 census records prior to the birth of Emily's first child that I suspect could be her. In 1891 the recorded is Emily Pike aged 17 from Crediton in Devon, a servant while in 1881 the girl recorded as Emily Pike aged 7 from Crediton in Devon, a visitor. Although they appear to be my Emily I am still cautious and reluctant to call her mine.
It was once written "that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet" (Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet, Act 2, Scene 2, Lines 47-48). Emily is that rose, regardless of what name she was given at birth she is still my 2nd Great Grandmother. Emily may always be shrouded in mystery but I will keep looking and in time I hope to gather the birth records for the remaining 5 children to compare the maiden names given on them.