I'm studying the FAN club of John Stanley Wright (mentioned at Finding an elusive ancestor after the 1901 census (who may have deserted his family)) in an attempt to narrow down the date range for his death.

I knew I had a great-aunt Suey who migrated to Canada, as my Auntie Dot went to visit her (or possibly her descendants) at the time of the Montreal Expo in 1967. And searching the records of passengers travelling between the UK and Canada (Montreal, Quebec) revealed not only that great aunt Susan Jane Wright went back and forth a few times, but great aunt Mary Agnes Wright travelled with her sometimes -- and Mary Agnes travelled across to Canada on her own in 1924.

On this occasion she had to fill in a form 30A (Ocean arrivals) -- you can see the original at Library and Archives Canada -- navigate to page 3473. On the form she states her nearest relative in the UK (usefully, this is her father), but also that she was travelling to join her sisterS (plural) and gives her destination as an address with her sisters Susie and ???? Wright. However, I'm struggling to read the name of the second sister.

Section of form 30a

Mary Agnes had 4 known sisters: Ellen (b.~1885), Susan Jane (Susie/Suey) (b.~1893), Dorothy b.~1901) and Ethel (B.~1902). There may be some missing ones -- the details of living and dead children of their mother in 1911 weren't filled in, and there are some possible gaps in the sequence of children after her marriage: 1883, 1885, 1887, 1889, 1891, 1893, 1896, 1898, 1899, 1901, 1902 (dates mostly calculated from census entries). I doubt there were any children born after 1902 who survived as they weren't with their mother in the 1911 census.

Susan Jane definitely travelled to Canada and is mentioned in this record by name.

Dorothy travelled to Canada as a British Home Child in 1912 and died shortly afterwards.

I've not been able to trace Ethel after the census in 1911 when she was 8 (so she would have been circa. 21 in 1924 and so is a possibility for the illegible sister.

I've not been able to trace Ellen after the 1901 census when she was 15. She would have been circa 38 in 1924 and so is another possibility.

However, try as I might, I can't make the illegible name read Ellen (maybe Nellie?) or Ethel...

1 Answer 1


I think it says Hettie. In my experience it is usually a nickname for Esther or Henrietta, but it could equally well be a nickname of Ethel. Nicknames are tricky as they do not always follow the expected pattern, but I have an Etty in my tree whose proper name was Ethel. Certain Midlanders seem to have a particular affinity for haitches such that they happear on nearly hevery word.

It looks like Ethel went to Canada in 1922 onboard the Andania:

enter image description here
Source: Ancestry.co.uk, UK, Outward Passenger Lists, 1890-1960

Note the address – 49 Gough Rd, Greet, Birmingham. The 1920 electoral roll shows a Mary Ann Wright and Robert Wright at this address in 1920, who I believe were Ethel's mother and brother, so I'm fairly certain it is your Ethel:

enter image description here
Source: Ancestry.co.uk, Midlands, England, Electoral Registers, 1832-1955

Ethel's Ocean Arrivals, Form 30A is page number 2024 in the dataset you linked to. She is under the name Ethel Violet Wright and notes her mother Mary Ann Wright, of 49 Gough Rd, Birmingham as nearest relative.

  • Oh, excellent find! Yes, that's Ethel's mother and brother (my grandfather).
    – user104
    Oct 11, 2016 at 7:24

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