Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sarah Ann Mellor Shepard

Sarah Ann Shepard was my g-g-aunt on my father's side.I have not yet found her record of birth in England but her tombstone gives her birth date as 16 October 1835. She was probably born in Chadderton, part of the town of Oldham and just outside of Manchester, England since birth records place her family there at the time of her older brother's birth. Sarah was the second of two children born to James Mellor and Mary Ann Lord - the oldest child was my g-g-grandfather, Ernest Lord Mellor.
Marriage record for Hargraves Shepard and Sarah Ann Mellor
29 August 1853 Prestwich, Lancashire, England
see source below

Sarah married Hargraves Shepard on 29 April 1853 in St Mary's Church in Prestwich (about 5 miles from Chadderton).It looks like she did not know how to write her name when she was married since she signed with a mark. She must have learned to write later in life since I have a book she owned (Picturesque Rhode Island, published in 1881) that contains her signature.

Signature of Sarah Ann Shepard after 1881
Hargraves and Sarah immigrated to the US in 1855, two years after their marriage. They were probably joining Sarah's brother, Ernest (my g-g-grandfather) who immigrated in 1853. It is probable that their mother, Mary Ann accompanied them since they were all living in Rhode Island by 1860
Sarah Ann Mellor Shepard
Hargraves and Sarah worked in the cotton mills in both England and in their new home in Rhode Island. My great-aunt Marion Wood (Sarah Ann's great niece) noted on a flyleaf of the Picturesque Rhode Island book that Hargraves was an overseer in the Chase Cotton Mill which used to be located at the Valley Falls bridge which separated Valley Falls from Central Falls (formerly Smithfield), Rhode Island.

Hargraves and Sarah never had children. According to my great-aunt, Sarah died at the Grant family home in Central Falls on 26 March 1922. Her husband predeceased her and died on 19 February 1894. They are both buried in Oak Grove Cemetery in Pawtucket, RI, next to the grave of Sarah's brother, sister-in-law, and mother.
Hargraves and Sarah Ann Shepard Tombstone
Oak Grove Cemetery, Pawtucket, Rhode Island

Marriage certificate source: "England, Lanchashire, Cheshire, Yorkshire, Parish Registers, 1603-1910." database and digital images, FamilySearch (http://familysearch.org: accessed 18 March 2012), Hargraves Shepherd and Sarah Ann Mellor , 29 August 1853 ; citing Parish Registers in Lancashire, marriage record # 326, page 163, Manchester Central Library, Manchester, England.

Friday, March 9, 2012

A January Wedding

My paternal grandparents were Ralph Westcott Grant and Florence Hazel Skinner. I wrote about Ralph here and Hazel here.

Ralph and Hazel probably knew each other from the time they were young children. Although Ralph grew up in Central Falls, Rhode Island, and Hazel's home was in Valley Falls, their houses were just blocks apart. Their families also attended the same church, Valley Falls Baptist Church and they must have known each other from Sunday School and church outings.

Ralph and Hazel  married on 15 January 1918 in Valley Falls, Rhode Island. Both were 23 years old. If there were any formal photos taken at Ralph's and Hazel's wedding, I don't know what happened to them.
Ralph on his wedding day
Hazel's younger sister, Myrtle, was Hazel's attendent.
Myrtle and Hazel Skinner on Hazel's wedding day

Wedding Announcement
Florence Hazel Skinner & Ralph Westcott Grant

Mr. and Mrs. John F. Skinner
announce the marriage of their daughter
Florence Hazel
Ralph Westcott Grant
on Tuesday, January the fifteenth
one thousand nine hundred and eighteen
Valley Falls, Rhode Island.

At Home
after March 1st
at the Puritan Apartments
Erie, Pennsylvania

"Hazel's going away outfit"