Wednesday, January 13, 2021

WEDDING WEDNESDAY ~ The marriages of my great grandaunt’s husband, William James Clifford Beechey (1860-1915), England

My maternal great grandaunt, Margaret Ewen MILNE was 29 when she married William James Beechey.  They were married 10 Feb 1879 in London, England.  Together this couple had two daughters, Margaret Ann Beechey born 2 Apr 1880 in Aboyne, Aberdeen, Scotland and Emma Agnes Beechey born 30 Apr 1885 in Bow Common, St. Paul, England.

I have confirmed my connection to this couple via a DNA match to their granddaughter, Joy Margaret Levasseur Edwards.  I am happily communicating with descendants from this line.

William Beechey was only married to Margaret Milne for 7 years, as she died in Mar 1886.  She was only 36 years old at the time.  I don’t have a cause of death for her, but there is a record of her  burial in London, England, City of London and Tower Hamlets Cemetery Registers, 1841-1966.

This left William with two daughters to raise.  The girls were only one and five at the time of their mother’s death. 

On 27 Dec 1891, William married a second time to Mary Annie PORTER Lankes in St. Luke’s Church, Deptford, Lewisham, England.

London, England, Church of England Marriages and Banns, 1754-1932
Name    Mary Annie Lankes
Gender Female
Marriage Age 29
Record Type    Marriage
Birth Date  1862
Marriage Date  27 Dec 1891
Marriage Place  St Luke, Deptford, Lewisham, England
Father    Thomas Porter
Spous     William James Clifford Buckey
Register Type Parish Register

(Please click on any image to enlarge it)

Marriage record - William James Clifford Beechey to Mary Annie Lankes - 27 Dec 1891

William & his second wife, Mary Annie had four children: Annie, Thomas, Emily and Theresa.  Sadly, this second wife, Mary, died 4 Dec 1898, at age 34.  Her cause of death indicates she likely died during or shortly after, childbirth.

England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1837-1915
Name:  Mary Ann Beechey
Estimated Birth Year:  abt 1864
Registration Year:  1898
Registration Quarter:  Oct-Nov-Dec
Age at Death:  34
Registration District:  St Olave Southwark
Parishes for this Registration District:  View Ecclesiastical Parishes associated with this Registration District
Inferred County:  London
Volume:  1d
Page:     164

Now it’s 1898 and William has children at home, ages 6, 4, 3 and 2 and probably his daughter Emma, age 13, from his first marriage.  By now, his oldest daughter Margaret was out of the house and married.  That’s a lot for a widower to handle.  I know it was customary back then to have domestic help in the home, sometimes regardless of what your socio economic status was.  Perhaps he had help?  Did he get help from family? 

William married a third time, 15 months after Mary’s death.  He married Elizabeth Emma Frances STEVENS Porter on 15 Apr 1900 in Deptford, London, England.

Marriage record - William James Clifford Beechey to Elizabeth Emma Frances Porter - 15 Apr 1900

This new marriage to Elizabeth produced five more children for William; Claude, William Clifford, Elizabeth, Margaret and Helena, all born between 1900 and 1912.

That makes a total of 11 children born to William Beechey and his three wives. They didn’t all live to adulthood.  In fact, there is a sad ending to this story.  But, that is for another post, so stay tuned.

If you have any connection to the ancestors I’ve mentioned in this post, I’d love to hear from you.  There have to be a lot of descendants out there, given there were so many children born to William and his 3 wives.

Happy hunting,

Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2010-2021   Diane Gould Hall


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I look forward to reading your comments. If you have any connection to the people mentioned in this blog, please let me know. I write about mine and my husband's ancestors and would welcome new information or meeting a new cousin or two. Thanks for visiting and come back soon.