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The Family of William Gaskin: Explanations

Eric Trudgill    -    1 June 2018

William Gaskin, husband of Ann, christened a Louisa, Sarah, Solomon and Henry Gaskin in Hertfordshire and Essex 1806-15. To these children we can add the James Gaskin who claimed to be 50 in the 1851 census but, with four children christened 1852-62, was probably born about 1817.

First, James married Abigail Lamb (see the baptism of their last child), surely a sister of Henry’s wife Ruth Lamb (being present at the birth of Ruth’s son James). Second, James and Abigail had five children born or baptised around Colchester, Ess 1837-50 and four more baptised around Ipswich, Sfk 1852-62, while Henry and Ruth had four children birth-registered near Colchester 1841-52 and three more born around Ipswich about 1846-60, the last christened in a church used by James in 1854. And third, two of James children in 1854 and 1858, and two of Henry’s in 1858 and 1863, married in Halstead, Ess, the ones in 1858 on the same day.

William Gaskin, husband of Ann, I believe by the early 1820s had married a Martha (perhaps a Wilson) and christened a Plato in 1825, who married Sarah Smith, and a Mark in 1829, who married Sarah Bird. To these two sons we can clearly add a William junior who married Jane Lamb, and an Alice who married Sarah Bird’s brother Robert: we can add them because Alice and Mark both christened children jointly with both William junior and Plato; and we can add them because, while Plato and Mark were christened as Wilsons, and Plato and Alice married as Wilsons, all three brothers also called themselves Gaskins when christening or birth-registering children, or in the case of Plato and Mark when appearing in the 1871 census. And if the four Wilsons were also Gaskins, it’s surely evident they were half-siblings of Henry and James Gaskin.

First, there’s the coincidence of family connections: Henry and James married Ruth and Abigail Lamb, Henry’s Walter and Alice married Alice and William Lamb, and James’ Jane married Joseph Lamb, while William Wilson junior married Jane Lamb; William junior and Jane’s son Mark Wilson married Ambrose Thorpe’s sister Eliza, while Henry Gaskin’s daughter Mary Ann married Ambrose himself (who witnessed the wedding of Mary Ann’s brother Henry junior) and Mary Ann’s brother John was travelling in the 1881 census with Ambrose Thorpe’s brother James. Second, there’s the coincidence of travel connections: Henry and Ruth christened their Alice in 1850 (off their usual track) in Beccles, Sfk where the four Wilson siblings christened 15 children between them 1851-60; Henry and James christened or birth-registered eight children between them around or in Ipswich, while William junior, Plato and Mark Wilson were all recorded, when christening children as hawkers of Ipswich. Third, there’s the coincidence of joint baptisms: William and Jane Wilson’s last child Hiram (birth registered as a Lamb Gascoigne) was christened as a Lamb in 1868 jointly with two daughters of Henry and Ruth’s William; William and Jane Wilson’s first child Mark christened a son in 1876 jointly with a daughter of Henry and Ruth’s Alice and christened another in 1877 jointly with daughters of Henry and Ruth’s Henry junior and Walter.

Finally, there’s the coincidence of origins. We have baptisms for four of William and Ann Gaskin’s children: for Louisa in Standon, Hrt in 1806, Sarah in Waltham Abbey, Ess in 1810, Solomon in Gt Dunmow, Ess in 1813 (William a tinker of Mondon [Gt Munden], Hrt, and Henry in Tolleshunt D’Arcy, Ess in 1815. We have baptisms for only two of William and Martha Wilson’s children: for Mark in Wherstead, Sfk (very close to Ipswich) and, more interestingly, for Plato in Lt Hadham, Hrt (close to Gt Dunmow and very close to Standon and Gt Munden), especially as Plato when christening children in 1855 said he was of Mimms, Hrt (very close to Waltham Abbey).

Intriguingly, a William Gaskin was christened in Gt Munden in 1793 base born son of Martha, perhaps sister of the husband of Ann, and a Maria Gaskin was christened in Sawtry, Hun in 1817, her father James a basket maker of Islington, Mdx like William Wilson at the baptism of his Plato in 1825. So William Gaskin husband of Ann and Martha, James Gaskin father of Maria, and Martha Gaskin mother of the William baptised in 1793 might all be children of the James Gaskin baptised in Islington in 1764 son of James and Elizabeth, his parents described only as poor.

Copyright © 2018 Eric Trudgill