It Would have to be John Stedman

As most people doing a one-name study know, having a problem sorting out one of your bearers gets an order of magnitude harder is the bearer’s given name is John. This is definitely true in the Stedman study. I have so far identified 1040 Stedman/etc. men in the non-US part of my study who have John as part of their given name.

I have been doing a small exercise recently to try to identify all of the Jane Stedmans in my study. I came across a Jane Steadman baptized in 1846 in Rushbury, Shropshire, daughter of John & Mary Stedman. Her birth registration was in Church Stretton RD in Q1 1846 as Jane Stedman, mother maiden name Hayley. I was quickly able to identify that John Steadman and Mary Lea Hayley were married in 1844 in Shrewsbury. According to the marriage license, John was age 21 and a son of John Steadman with occupation Butler.

Further research identified that Jane had a sibling Lucy Steadman whose birth was registered in Q4 1850 in Upton upon Severn RD and who was buried on 21 January 1851 in Great Malvern. And that Mary Lea Stedman was also buried in Great Malvern on 2 December 1850.

To my great consternation, I could not find any John Stedman/etc. in the 1851 census of the nearly correct age who claimed to be a Widower, with or without a daughter Jane. I also could only find a slightly older John Stedman unmarried who was born in Aston Eyre, Shropshire (and baptized in 1819 in Morville as son of John and Mary) in 1841 and 1851 census. Was he my John?

I found that his marriage to Anne Bishop in Q4 1856 was registered in West Bromwich RD. No parish record of their marriage has been found. They had 3 known children and died in 1901 and 1913 respectively.

I could purchase their marriage certificate but I suspect that the only information that it might tell me is if John claimed to be a Bachelor or Widower. As all too often, a widower will report as a bachelor, I am not hopeful.

I have tried to search for possible parents for John, but again given the high frequency of the given name, it is difficult to find a particular couple who could be parents. I have looked at various online trees and have found nothing useful.

Please remember that this search started with trying to document fully Jane Stedman and morphed into trying to sort out her parents. (Her mother’s father I should point out was a Sedgley Hayley (c.1794-1861) who according to 1851 census was a Gentleman from Balliol College, Oxford.) Jane is still a problem. I could find no death registration or burial record for her so I assume she was alive in 1851. The only 1851 census record that might be for her was the Jane Stedman, Lodger, age 5, born Great Marvern, living with the Thomas and Mary Edwards family in Great Malvern. I search of that family did not find any obvious family connection to either the Stedman or Hayley family and I could not find a further record for her.

Did I miss something? Can anyone suggest further searches that can sort out Jane or her parents?

Spread the love

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.