No father listed on birth records?

+4 votes
No father's name is listed on any birth or baptism records for my great-grandmother, Agnes Blackstock. A birth register lists her mother as Mary Blackstock without a married surname. Can I assume that this means Agnes was born out of wedlock, or what other reason might there have been?
WikiTree profile: Agnes Hutchison Snowdowne
in Genealogy Help by Tracy Frayne G2G6 Mach 2 (22.0k points)
Pretty much no father listed means born outside the bonds of matrimony.

This can mean different things in different  places, and different eras -- and how it is written up can depend on the prejudices of the cleric doing the recording.  (Some places expected betrothed couples would share bed  and board, to see if they were fertile, before they affirmed the betrothal vows with the (slightly more formal marriage) vows.)

If you have the baptismal record, what exactly does it  say?

Thanks for that insight Melanie. The civil record for the baptism is here and just has a strikeout under father's name and occupation. And where there a "formerly" title under the mother's name, that is scratched out too, so it literally just says Mary Blackstock.

So, a clinical civil record, not a judgemental cleric.  

Basically, you're stuck on that line, except maternally.  (I've a few collateral cousins in that situation.)

Just record it factually - name's birth was recorded thusly, indicating the father was undeclared.  (Because I'm sure the child's mother knew who the father was.)
Some children were still baptized/christened in Ireland.   I know that some of those  who were born with putative fathers or illigitimate were often still bapitized in the local church.  I wonder if you might find something there or on her marriage registration?   I noticed on family search that it says that she was christened at Rathmore Kildare, Ireland, Rathmore is under the parish of Kill.  

Do you know where her middle name might come from Hutchison?  As I see that Agnes used her mothers married name of Forrester as a middle name for one of her children.

Good luck.
I have never heard of a couple being oked to share a bed to see if they were fertile, can you give some examples?  

The bapitsmal records I have seen, record as putative fathers or illegitimate.
Hi Lynn, we aren't actually certain where the middle name comes from in fact. It's not on any birth info, but does appear on her marriage certificate. We discussed the possible reasons in this thread:
I agree with Mark Dorney in your discussion about this.  I have never seen a birth certificate without a first name unless the child was a still birth, in Ireland.  It maybe different in other places.

It is amazing what information sometimes comes out after the birth is registered, perhaps she always knew the name Hutchinson and put in on the marriage certificate.  

Catholic names usually include a christening name which is a saints name.  Celtic naming patterns - just for interest sakes - are 1st male child named after fathers father (paternal grandfather) , 1st female child named after maternal mother's mother (maternal grandmother), 2nd son named after mother's father (maternal grandfather), 2nd daughter named after father's mother (paternal grandmother), etc.
Tracy, sorry if I'm nitpicking, but I don't think that is a strikeout in the "father" column.  It just looks like a "–" that people often write when no information is available.

And the strikeout in the mother's column, of the word "formerly," definitely suggests to me that she was unmarried.

I see also that on her marriage record, Agnes's mother's name has been written in the "father" column.

Edited to add information.
Thank you, both Lynn and Julie! Your knowledge, comments and thoughts are most helpful. Appreciate it.

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