By Maureen Storey
In this journal we welcome new member Diane Sole, who is researching the ancestry of her grandfather George Hubert Sole, who married Katherine Van Dijk in Cape Town, South Africa, on 20 December 1924. Diane had thought that George was probably born in the UK, but according to the marriage register he was born in South Africa. The most likely baptism yet found for George is that of George Herbert Sole in 1893, though it has yet to be confirmed that this is the correct George.
Since rejoining the Society last year Hilary Hale, a descendant of Richard Sole and Mary Master (who married in 1594 in East Preston, Sussex), has been going through our records of her family and comparing them with the results of her own research. This has proved an extremely valuable exercise and as a result we’ve identified and corrected a number of errors in the database and have been able to add further details. It has also highlighted where further research is needed to justify assumptions that have been made. At present, Hilary is trying to establish whether the William Sole who married Sophia Fairhall in 1846 had been married previously and whether his father Philip Sole was the one baptised in Rustington in 1779 or another Philip.
Mike Guilfoyle, the vice chairman of The Friends of Brockley and Ladywell Cemeteries in southeast London, has been researching some of the families buried in the cemeteries with the intention of writing a guided walk pointing out interesting graves. He wrote to us asking what information we had on Edward and Fanny Soal, who were buried in the cemetery in 1929 and 1930 respectively. Specifically, he asked if they were the Edward and Fanny who ran a greengrocer’s shop in Ladywell and if the Mary Ann Soal who nursed Queen Victoria (Soul Search, July 1999, Nursing Queen Victoria) was part of this family. On learning that he had identified Edward and Fanny correctly, that Mary Ann was Edward’s sister, and that her parents (William Soal (1837-1900) and Mary Ann Harknett (1841-1912)) were also buried in the cemeteries, Mike said that he would locate the gravestones and include a note about the Soals in the guided walk.
Information about our families gleaned from the new datasets that have appeared on Ancestry (A) and Findmypast (fmp) in the last few months has been added to our database. These datasets include the Church of England parish registers of Wiltshire (1538-1916) (A & fmp), Birmingham (1538-1918) (A), Liverpool (1659-1912) (A), and Nottinghamshire (fmp). There are very few entries for Sole and variants in these registers before 1812, but the numbers pick up as the Industrial Revolution progresses and there is mass movement into the industrial areas. Two other new datasets that have proved useful for information on our families are the burial registers of the City of London and Tower Hamlets Cemetery (1841-1966) (A) and the London Marriage Licences (1521-1869) (fmp).