Sunday, October 6, 2013

Follow-on weddings

In a previous post I mentioned that Esther Lambert and Matthew Cragg seem to have been together at a wedding some time before their own marriage. Their names appear as the witnesses at the wedding of Grace Lambert and John Singleton in Preston in 1831. Esther and Matthew married two and a half years later in 1833.

This wasn't the only occasion when the witnesses at a family wedding were to marry each other. In October 1890 when Matthew and Esther's grandson Matthew Ward married Elizabeth Anne Brown in Rastrick, Yorkshire, the witnesses were Matthew's father John Ward, his brother John Willie, and John Willie's future wife Mary Hannah Butterworth.

John Willie and Mary Hannah married in Smallbridge, Lancashire, in March 1893. The witnesses at this wedding were John Willie's sister Esther, and Travis Kershaw. Five years later, in March 1898, Esther and Travis were married in Milnrow.

If nothing else, the timing of these 'follow on' weddings suggest that the couples knew each other for quite a while before they married. But that's not so surprising given that many people in the past married someone from the same village as themselves. It would be interesting to know if the same thing happened in any of the marriages on the Beales side of the family, but I don't have enough details about these marriages to know who the witnesses were.

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