Saturday, 7 May 2011

The Puzzle of Peter:- A Danson Story: Surname Saturday

Early on in my Danson family history, my aunt recounted a story of her grandfather James having  a younger brother buried in St. Chad's  Churchyard,  Poulton-le-Fylde.  I soon found  in the local library a Danson entry in an  "Index to Graves" which I noted down as:


Henry Danson, who died 27th October 1881 aged 75 years.

Elizabeth Danson, wife of Henry Danson,
died 8th April 1879 aged 67 years.

Peter Danson, son of the above who departed this life
18th May 1866 aged 12 years.

Sacred to the memory of James,
 son of Henry and Elizabeth Danson.

This quick confirmation of the younger brother of James Danson delighted me and indicated the young Peter was born 1853-4, so would have been about 8 years old at the time of the 1861 census.  However no entry in the census records had been found of him locally.  He was not at the home of his parents of any of his  older married sisters, nor was a record of his birth traced.

Moreover when help was sought from the Blackpool Registrar, the only relevant certificate related to Peter, the brother of Henry Danson, who died aged 72 of apoplexy on 18th May 1866 at Back Street, Poulton.  The informant was Jas Brownhill, of Tithe Barn Street Poulton, who was present at his death - thought to be  the husband of Peter’s niece Margaret Danson.    The burial entry in the St Chad’s Church Register is rather faint but the age given is clearly 72 not 12.

As a further check I later obtained a copy of the monumental inscription from Poulton Library to discover that I had originally recorded the entries in the wrong  order, and this subtly changed their meaning.   The correct order was:

Sacred to the memory of James,
son of Henry and Elizabeth Danson
(I now realise this refers to 15 year old James, son of Henry Danson  and  Elizabeth Brown, who died in 1827, and not as first thought my great grandfather James)

Also of Peter Danson, son of the above
who departed this life 18th May 1866 aged 12 years.
(Was this a confusion between 12 and 72
in recording the age for the Index ?)

 

 

Also of Elizabeth, wife of Henry Danson

who died April 8th 1879 aged 67years.

Also of Henry Danson

who died October 27th 1881 aged 75 years

By changing the order in which I had originally written down the inscriptions to give emphasis to “my” James parents (above), I had completely misinterpreted the entries - not helped of course by the repetition of  the same Christian names down the generations.  

That I had made a mistake was further confirmed when I found in a history of St. Chad’s Church that the graveyard had been closed in 1883, so the James Danson buried there could not be the James Danson my great grandfather who died in 1906.   Further research was to find that he had been buried at Moorland Road Cemetery.

Further confirmation when a  microfiche transcription became available, as this  gave far more specific details on a monument in the south section of the churchyard, which has since been cleared.

Sacred to the memory of James, son of Henry and Elizabeth Danson died January 9th 1827 aged 15 years.  Also of Peter Danson son of the above who departed this life 18th May 1866 aged 12 (72?) years.  Also of Elizabeth wife of Henry Danson who died April 8th 1879 aged 67 years.  Also of Henry Danson who died October 27th 1881 aged 75 years.

William Danson died February 18th 1833 aged 41. John Danson January 28th 1836 aged 46.  Henry Danson October 21st 1839 aged 71.  Elizabeth Danson May 10th 1840 aged 74.

 
Whether there was a young Peter remains doubtful, and perhaps the family recollection was on this occasion wrong.  But there were also lessons for me on transcribing information correctly!

St. Chad's Churchyard, Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire

See Also:
Danson Discoveries - 4th Feb. 2011  
Grandfather William Danson - 17th Feb. 2011
Great Grandfather James Danson - 25th Feb 2011
Great Grandfather's Eleven Children - 10th March 2011
Great Great Grandfather Henry Danson - 2nd April 2011
Great Great Grandfather Henry Danson's Nine Children - 21st April 2011

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Surname Saturday is a daily prompt from http://www.geneabloggers.com/,
used by many bloggers to help them tell stories of their ancestors.

Copyright © 2011 · Susan Donaldson.  All Rights Reserved

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