|Background of Ann Mary Rolling, marriages etc|
The birth certificate for Deborah Ann states that her mother was Ann Mary Russell, formerly Rolling whilst her father was Charles Russell.
A letter from Muriel Stephens, Deborah's granddaughter, states:
Ann Mary "lived in Norfolk as a girl. Her parents were middleclass and she had some education of which fact she was proud. She married a "black coated" worker to the great satisfaction of her family who in those times despised those who worked manually. She had a honeymoon which was considered a luxury but it turned out unfortunately for her as the bridegroom caught a cold. The bed in which they slept was damp and the cold turned to pneumonia from which he died. She was terribly grief stricken and used to to go for long walks in the country lanes crying and calling his name. Some time later she married a Mr Russell much to the displeasure of her family and also to the disgust of her late husband's family who until then had been very good to her. The trouble was Mr Russell was a wheelwright!"
Such accounts can be unreliable in the detail. But this would imply that Ann Mary was a widow when she married Charles and therefore that her surname was not Rollings at that stage.
A "black coated" worker was a clerical or professional, as distinguished from commercial or industrial worker.
Six marriages of Charles Russell around this time were found in the Norfolk IGI.
Of these only one looks plausible:
to Ann Mary Gathercole at Colkirk parish church on 24 November 1830.
The marriage register has been inspected (and copied) and both are said to be 'of this parish'.
Charles was a Bachelor, but Ann Mary a widow.
Ann Mary signed but Charles used his mark.
Colkirk is close to Tatterford and Fakenham.
A child, Charles, was baptised on 17 Dec 1831 at Colkirk to Charles and Ann Russell.
Their abode was Colkirk and Charles a Blacksmith.
A second child Richard, was baptised on 23 July 1834 and it appears that he died the following year in Aylsham.
It seems highly likely therefore that these are the correct Charles and Ann Mary.
There is also a possible earlier marriage:
James Gathercole married Ann Mary Rollings at East Rudham 4 February 1822.
She would have been about 19 years of age.
A James Gathercole, aged 33, was buried at Colkirk on 12 October 1829.
If this was the husband of Ann Mary she married just over a year later.
Whilst this seems to fit it suggests that the family tradition passed on by Muriel Stephens was not what it at first seems. Muriel implied that James died soon after the honeymoon, but it would appear that they were married for about 7 years.
An earlier line of enquiry had focussed on the fact that in the 1861 Census the youngest son of Charles and Ann Mary was called William Earl Russell. This is a slightly unusual name, although their Daughter had two middle names (Deborah Ann Mary).
There was a marriage for a William Earl to Ann Mary Rollings at St Nicholas Kings Lynn, 30 December 1827.
However, no matching death fo William has been found.
Moreover, there were two children, called Sarah Earl and William Earl baptised to William and Ann Earl at St Margaret's King's Lynn in 1828 and January 1830 respectively.
It seems likely therefore that this was a different Ann Mary Rollings, but the naming of William Earl Russell remains curious.
A proper investigation of the 1841 Census or 1851 Census for the Earls may shed further light on the matter.
1841 possible Elizabeth Rolling, East Rudham
1851 possible Elizabeth Rolling, East Rudham
|Baptism of Ann Mary Rolling|
According to the censuses she was born in about 1803 in Tatterford (1851) or Rudham (1861/71).
Tatterford and East Rudham are about 2 miles apart.
There is a baptism for Ann Mary Rolling at Tatterford in 1803. Her mother was given as Elizabeth and she was said to be 'base born", ie illegitimate.
However, there is also a baptism for Mary Ann to Deborah in East Rudham, February 1803 (the register is hard to read).
The former is said to be baseborn, the latter does not have a father listed.
There is insufficient information from this to choose between these two.
The account of Murial Stephens mentions both her parents.
Ann Mary's daughter was called Deborah.
Deborah Rolling may have been married to John Rolling and then remarried, possibly twice.
Elizabeth Rolling seems to have two otehr children and was still unmarried by the time of the 1851 Census living with her son Richard.
Also Mary Ann Rolling baptised in 1809, daughter of John and Mary who had at least 4 other children baptised there.
The various Rolling entries for East Rudham have been recorded.
Baptism of Mary Ann Rolling (?) in 1803, East Rudham
A handwritten note left by Joy Stafford states:
"Grandmother - Deborah Ann Mary Russell had a brother Oscar who had 3 children - Ralph, Annie and Maud, and a half-brother Graham.
Maud married Arthur Ewart-Jones and they had 2 sons, Ewart and Ronald"
However, so far nothing has been found for an Oscar Russell brother or Deborah.