Sunday, 27 December 2015

Thomas Briggs Family History - second post

Marriage:  On May 8th 1854,  in the parish of Minster Sheppey, Kent, Thomas Briggs a blacksmith aged 24 years married Maria Richards aged 22yrs (born 1831 Devonport,Devon)). Three witnesses are listed (1) his father Thomas Briggs (Snr) a gardener (2) Maria's father Thomas Richards a blacksmith and (3) Maria's mother Maria Richards nee Frost.  The Richards family had moved from Plymouth Devon to Gillingham Kent before their next child was born in 1838.

Sadly the mother of Thomas Briggs is not listed on his marriage certificate so we assume she was deceased at that time.  After all if the minister was good enough to list Maria's mother then he would also have listed the groom's mother had she been living.

Sudden death: three months after the marriage on 9th August 1854 young Thomas died suddenly. His death certificate states he died at 122 Charles Street, Blue Town, Sheerness.

Cause of death: certificate states 'purpura (haemorrhage)'.  Unfortunately the doctor did not  list what he thought may have caused this purpura.  Being an RN I knew something about purpura and have read a lot more about it since seeing his death certificate including many articles on diseases that occurred in that area at that time. Just one of the hudnreds of articles to peruse is http://kentarchaeology.ac/authors/004.pdf.   I don't want to start a discussion about it on here as heaps of information can be found on the Internet and none of the articles can help us decided what caused Thomas' purpura, we can only speculate.

Burial: The Holy Trinity, Sheerness, parish burial register states Thomas was buried on August 12th 1854 but does this mean he is in the Holy Trinity Churchyard or another churchyard?  Sheerness local newspapers did not start being published until 1858 so we cannot search there for a death notice or obituary. I doubt he was cremated.


Brick Wall:  I have spent many years searching for Thomas' birth 
records and have also enlisted the help of professional researchers and staff from the Kent libraries. These records have not come to light, at least not in Kent.  It would have been so easy if his mother's name had been listed on his marriage certificate with (deceased) after her name.  We have no proof that he was born in Kent, no siblings to trace.  I continue to search in Kent and in surrounding counties.

Maria: When Thomas' died his widow Maria was only a couple of weeks pregnant with their son Thomas Francis Richards Briggs who I will talk about in my next blog.  Maria and her son lived with her parents in Sheerness and Maria was housekeeper for Doctor Edward Swales and his wife Mary (died June quarter 1871).  Maria didn't remarry until 1885 when she married Dr. Edward Swales (born Helmsley,Yorkshire) and they lived at No:3 Trinity Road, Sheerness.  When visiting Sheerness a few years ago I took this image of the house (with the owners permission).  The house is opposite the Holy Trinity Church.
My next post will feature Thomas Francis Richards Briggs, the son of Thomas and Maria.    
  

Monday, 30 November 2015

Thomas Briggs Family History - first post

The surname Briggs was registered with The Guild of One-Name Studies in 2009.This is a very common surname and I am aware that this is too large a project to attempt on my own. I will do what I can to make this project viable and to do that I am happy to have other researchers submit and share their own BRIGGS surname information.

To date I have contact with cousins in the UK plus nine other Briggs researchers. I have launched a Briggs Study drop box and inside the box is a folder for each researcher who contacts me - they enter their information and this is readily shared between us.  This includes lists of BMDs, Wills,  Probates amongst others.

Modern variations: Brig, Brigg, Briggs. 
Old variations: Brigge, Bridge, Bryggia, Brycg
Mistranscriptions: Bassett

In 1881 census of England and Wales there were, 16,261 Briggs entries and 6,070 Bridges entries - giving a combined total of more than 22,000. 

In 1911, over 24,000 Briggs listed.

My next post will be as short as this one because I have little informaiton about my  GG Grandfather Thomas Briggs a blacksmith  - he is my BRICK WALL


Image: Surname  Atlas showing distribution of surname Briggs in UK  taken from 1881 UK census.