I'm looking for a 1901 census record of Annie Elizabeth Ward (maiden name I think is Campbell). According to the previous post and digging around I've done, in the 1911 census Annie Elizabeth and James Spencer Ward had been married 11 years, which was supported by a GRO marriage registration from 1899 in West Derby.

However, I've looked for James Spencer Ward on the 1901 and he's living in a different house with his father, James Spencer Ward Sr, and he's working as a GPO telegraph wireman. I can't seem to find Annie Elizabeth anywhere on the 1901 census.

What's going on here?

Could the marriage record year be wrong or is there something else afoot?

It all seems like a big mess and something is wrong here.

  • No need to apologize for asking questions. It is a regular flow of them that makes the site vibrant. – PolyGeo Sep 3 '17 at 23:50

It looks to me like she was at her parents house for the 1901 census and was (wrongly) enumerated under her maiden name as Ann E Campbell and also as single... If you don't have ancestry the reference is:

Class: RG13; Piece: 3374; Folio: 98; Page: 26

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    Well it would except we have a pretty clear entry in the marriage index giving Q4 of 1899 as the date of the marriage. Don't forget that for the 1901 census we don't know who exactly provided the information to the enumerator so mistakes are not that unusual. – TomH Sep 3 '17 at 23:15
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    Well while it's not especially common it's not that unusual for a couple to be living apart, especially a newly married couple who may not be able to afford to setup house on their own. More common is probably for them both to be living with one set of parents, but if the husband needs to travel to find work... But really it's all speculation at this distance. – TomH Sep 3 '17 at 23:50
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    @Charlie - a single Annie having her parents' surname is odd, but the census entry was written by the enumerator, not the family. So, for example, Joseph may have listed his children but forgotten to state that Annie was married, and so the enumerator assumed she'd have the same surname. It also looks like Thomas was forgotten in the original statement, as he's crammed in between Jane and Edward, so there's some evidence that the original information given to the enumerator was not fully accurate. All speculation, of course, but errors really aren't unusual in the census. – AndyW Sep 4 '17 at 10:19
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    @Charlie You are right to find this strange, particularly considering that James and Ann are on the same page of the census, in two houses two numbers apart! Both recorded as single and living with parents. Unlikely both are a mistake. The 1911 census does state they were married for 11 years, so perhaps something went wrong early in their marriage and it was a couple of years before they got back together. It's all speculation though and you may never find a documented answer unfortunately. These things happen today, they happened a century ago as well. – Harry V. Sep 5 '17 at 4:15
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    I do note that based on the GRO index they likely had a daughter Gladys who was born and died in 1901; the birth and death certificates may be enlightening... – Harry V. Sep 5 '17 at 4:20

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