By Maureen Storey
In this journal we welcome new members Michael Sole and Robert Phillips.
Michael is researching the family of his great grandfather John Henry Sole, who was born in Tranmere, Cheshire, in 1886. John Henry joined the Manchester Regiment in 1905 and served with them until 1907 when he asked to be discharged with a view to emigrating to Canada. He settled in Nova Scotia, where he worked as a miner. He married Florence Hannigan in 1909 and their children Mary and John were born in 1911 and 1913, respectively. John enlisted again in 1915, this time in the Canadian Army, and served until the end of World War I. He died in Nova Scotia in 1935 Having researched the Canadian part of his family, Michael joined the Society as a first step towards investigating John Henry’s birth family. Our records for the family go back another three generations to James and Ann Sole, who were living in Westminster in the 1830s.
We have not yet exchanged data with Robert.
South African records were the subject of a query from Diana Phillips. She is trying to trace the family of her grandmother Isabelle Millicent Sole, who married Alexander Johnson in Durban in 1905 and died in Pretoria in 1945. Because of the difficulties faced when dealing with South African records, she has been unable to trace Isabelle’s parents and wondered if we knew anything about the family.
The only definite record we have is Isabelle’s marriage, from which we knew that Isabelle was only 22 when she married 33-year-old Alexander, so she must have been born in about 1883. Unfortunately parents’ names do not appear on South African church records, so the only other clue to Isabelle’s family we have is that the marriage was witnessed by Daisy Sole. In our database we have a Daisy Sole, who was born in South Africa in about 1877 and was a member of one of the Kent families. It is tempting to assume that she was the Daisy who witnessed Isabelle’s marriage and perhaps could even have been her sister. Again, due to the difficulty in accessing South African records, our details for Daisy’s immediate family are somewhat sketchy. We know she was the daughter of Henry John and Esther Alicia (née Lloyd) Sole, and that she had at least four siblings (Arthur, Herbert, Harry and Myrtle). We don’t know what happened to Daisy or Myrtle, though we have families for the three boys. We’re still looking for evidence to prove (or disprove) the hypothesis that Isabelle is part of this Daisy’s family.
There have not been any significant major family history sites recently but data from minor and revised sources has been added to the Sole trees as it has become available.