Record from the Surrey History Centre – marriage of Samuel Harris (Holt) to Sarah Diggins 1787 Frensham Surrey England
There is something very exciting about seeing a document that one of your ancestors saw, signed and perhaps touched. The image shown here on the left is of my several times Great Grandfather marrying in Frensham, Surrey England in 1787. What is interesting to me is that it shows Samuel marrying, using the maiden name of his mother, which was Harris. Samuel was illegitimate and was the subject of a Bastardy Bond as the parish tried to chase down his father to extract money for the child’s upkeep.
Samuel’s mother was rather shrewd. She baptised Samuel with the father’s surname which was Holt. She also used the surname of Holt for the Bastardy Bond. His mother subsequently married another man, but Samuel retained the surname of his mother. Following the lines downwards until I reached the birth of my Great Grandmother, who had the surname of Harris purely by fate, it was my Great Grandmother, whose knee I sat on as a little girl and the moment I saw her name on a census return, herself as a little girl I was hooked on my family history.
The moral of this post is to say we need to examine everything we read in documents, because sometimes, things are not as they appear……and the link to X…? Samuel signed his marriage record with X as he could not write.
The surnames of Diggins, Harris and Holt are not registered with the Guild, but one of our members does have an interest in the surname of Harris. If you search the Guild website, using the search box on the top right for the surname of Harris you can contact the Guild member who is researching the surname.
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