Help with a US immigrant Born England 1824

+1 vote
William M Edwards is believed born 12 May 1824 in or near London to a Welsh father and English mother, married a woman named Charlotte in England 1860, emigrated to America 1872-73 with some of the known offspring. I have very little information other than that contained in a family history in a county historical society file. What information that is known is on the profile. Could someone more facile than myself with English records see if they can find the family given what is known? All help welcome.

Additionally, both William and Charlotte are said to be buried Denver, Colorado 1891 and 1894, respectively. I find no burial records online (anywhere in Colorado) to date and a record might not exist.
WikiTree profile: William Edwards
in Genealogy Help by T Stanton G2G6 Pilot (251k points)
retagged by T Stanton
Wow, I see why you would like help!  Several family historians have conflated a few families - in England, Ireland, Ohio, and New Brunswick. Fortunately, the timing seems to be overlapping, so it can get untangled!
I am quite familiar with the English Census and birth records, and i didn't find this family in England so far.  

So I'm going back to the clues in the record that you know for sure is the right family.  I see that the father of grandson William D Edwards is stated on the 1880 Census to have been born in Ohio.  So, if that the grandson's surname is correctly given as Edwards and the grandson's father is a different son of William M Edwards Sr and Charlotte, that would seem to indicate that the family passed through Ohio on their way to Kansas, and had a son born there who is younger than William M Edwards Jr (who is only 19 himself).  This younger son fathered baby William D. with a young woman born in England.  

More likely, the young woman born in England is the daughter of the Edwards family, and the baby's dad is a man who lives in Kansas but was born in Ohio, or the baby's dad still lives in Ohio and just the young pregnant mother came further west with her parents, giving birth in Kansas.  Possibly the Ohio father's name is also Edwards or possibly the parents didn't marry so grandson William D has his mother's family name.

Too bad there is not likely to be a 1890 census for this area.  It would be great to figure out who the mother of William D is .  Then you would have a name to look for in a family grouping in an 1870 census, as well as another name to search back in England.  

In hopes that she is living near her parents, I'm going to go now and try to spot her on the Graham Kansas 1880 census.  With any luck she is still named Edwards, or she is married to a man from Ohio.
Well, I didn't spot any English-born young wives or servants on that census, but i was just scanning, so we can come back to that if no other leads pan out.

Now I'm going to try to see if anyone on Ancestry can give any clues as to who young William D, the grandson, grew up to be.
I think we can be highly suspicious of the name Isabella in conjunction with Charlotte.  That name seems to have come into the picture with the conflation of the family of Irish-born William M Edwards who was active in New Brunswick as a clergyman during the same time frame that your family was in Kansas.
I agree there is conflation with at least one and probably two families going on here. What I saw at Ancestry was cringe-worthy (problems with New Brunswick and also in Ohio). I also wonder if the grandson William in 1880 is perhaps the nephew of the 19 year old William or an out of wedlock birth is being covered up and Charlotte _________ is perhaps not the mother. Will have some time to get back to this this evening or early tomorrow. In the meantime, thank you for having a look at this. I today discovered one person who would be a great great granddaughter still lives in the area and may have additional information, particularly about the supposed burials in Denver. The family history file at the historical society dates from the mid-70s at the latest and it does not give a maiden name for Charlotte.
Obtaining some new information from the great great granddaughter on Friday or Monday and will swing back here once I have her info. Hopefully it answers some questions.
William was often abbreviated Wm so this may have given rise to a mistaken belief that both Williams had a middle initial M.

I can't find the family on the 1861 or 1871 censuses which is strange. How confident is the wife of William senior being Charlotte?
She is given as Charlotte in the 1880 US Census.
Not to over-complicate things but there's always the potential of a first wife who emigrated with him and passed away (or even died in England) with Charlotte being a second wife married in America before they moved from Ohio to Kansas. But, nothing in the family history suggests this. I've so far found no actual primary source Ohio records, this is part of the family history and is supported by a census record stating immigration was to Ohio and then the 1880 Census after the move to Kansas gives the youngest William as born Ohio. I have not yet checked to see if Ohio conducted state census in between US Census taking which if they did perhaps there is an 1875 Ohio Census in which they might appear. Also have not yet checked any written county histories late 19th Century but those tend not to have much on very recent immigrants.
Actually, the census says the grandson William D was born in Kansas, but his father was born in Ohio, doesn't it?
That's how we know that grandson William D is not the son of William M Jr.    William M Jr was born in England and this had just been stated in the line above.

Of course, none of that is worth anything if the respondents got confused or the enumerator got confused.
1880 US Census Data as reported:

 Wm Edwards, Age 55, farmer, born England, father born Wales, mother born England.

Charlotte, Age 59, keeping house, born England, father born England, mother born England

William, age 19, son, at home, born England, father born England, mother born England

William, age 1, grandson, born Kansas, father born Ohio, mother born England

So, yes, there are some inconsistencies between what was reported in the census or what the census taker wrote and what is in the family history. As written it indicates the youngest William is not the son of William age 19.  Meeting with a great great granddaughter (who is in the grave monument business) today which may offer some insight or leads to clear up confusion.

1 Answer

+1 vote
by Shirlea Smith G2G6 Pilot (223k points)
This is sort of an index.  If you could access the document itself, there might be some info there.

Also, at what point in time would such a document be created?  Was there a waiting period, like there was in Pennsylvania in the early 1700s?

If there was a waiting period, would this document by William Edwards be at the start of the waiting period, to start the clock, or at the end, to recognize his naturalization?

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