I'm searching for the bmd records of a couple (Samuel and Ann Page) who were baptising their children in Brierley Hill Staffordshire in the early nineteenth century:
- Maria Page baptised March 1803
- Sarah Page baptised May 1806
- Samuel Page baptised Jan 1808.
There are no children of the couple baptised earlier than 1803 or later than 1808 in that Parish, or in the adjacent parish of Kingswinford. (St Michaels was a chapelry of St Mary Kingswinford until 1848).
Samuel the younger lived between 1834 and 1888 in the Brierley Hill/Brockmoor/Kingswinford area, so it seems unlikely (but not impossible) his parents moved away when he was a baby.
There is a burial in Brierley Hill of a Samuel Page aged 29 on 2 August 1807 (implying a birth in 1777/1778); and a possible marriage of Samuel Page to Nancy Holt in Kingswinford in September 1798 (no consent of parents was required, which implies a birth in or before 1777). There is no other marriage in the area between a Samuel Page and Ann/Nan/Hannah/Nancy between 1783 and 1803, according to "England, Select Marriages 1538-1973" on Ancestry (and elsewhere). There is also a baptism in June 1778 in Brierley Hill of a Samuel Page (Freereg.org.uk) to Samuel and Sophia (some sources say Sobiesketh).
I have therefore tentatively identified these as Samuel the elder's baptism marriage and death; although a gap of five years between marriage and baptism of the first child is unusually long, there could have been a miscarriage or stillbirth in that period.
But... when Samuel the younger was baptised (Jan 1808), he was recorded as the son of Samuel and Ann Page (not just Ann Page). Would the deceased father usually be named in such circumstances (perhaps to indicate that the child was legitimate)? I've seen other PRs where a child is recorded as the legitimate child of a widow without naming the father.
Or does the naming of the father indicate that the father is still alive in Jan 1808?
(All events unless otherwise stated are recorded in the Parish Register transcriptions for St Michael's Brierley Hill and St Mary's Kingswinford produced by the Staffordshire Parish Registers Society.)