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27 January 2014

A Really Short Marriage?

Never discount the possibility that your ancestor was married more times than you think he was. An unknown (to you) spouse could have died very shortly after the marriage and, for any of a number of reasons, never have been mentioned. 

For women this usually means their last name changed or may not be what you think it should be. For men the marriage may be a little more difficult to locate. 

But never assume that there was "only one."


  1. I certainly have seen this. My great-aunt died after giving birth (as did the baby), and her husband remarried two months later! The story is on my blog www.brotmanblog.wordpress.com

  2. I know of this first hand. There are examples in our family tree where couples married and the parties divorced before the "ink was dry" so to speak. Fortunately there were no children in either of these marriages.
    For many reasons these marriages have not been spoken of to the parties involved since this happened several years ago. Now that they have married again and have children, we wonder what is going to be said to the children? It is a certainty that at some point in time the children will find out that their parents were married before. There were nice pictures of the engagement / wedding in the paper and these will be there for the researcher to come across. The one was a large wedding and not a secret that they got married and wouldn't life be easier if all was said and over with?
    In doing research for other families similar things have come up and it seems to be an embarrassment to all, even though it should not be. What took place in the past was who they were then and not who they are now. Everyone lives their life the best that they can at that time. For instance, we decided that we did not want a big wedding, so we "eloped, sort of " went to the minister with out our parents knowledge, just grandparents and 2 friends, he married us in the church and we are happy, 48 year later!