Surname Saturday: HALE

Continuing the Surname Saturday genealogy blogging meme by looking at the HALE family of Knotting and Potton, Bedfordshire.

For this Surname Saturday entry, I’m going right back to the late 17th century to tell you about the Hale family from a small village on the Bedfordshire/Northamptonshire border.

In 1660, with the death of Oliver Cromwell and the restoration of Charles II still fresh in people’s minds, a William Hale (b.c. 1621) and his wife Elizabeth from the tiny village of Knotting had welcomed their son Thomas into the world. By 12th August of that year he had been christened in the parish church. It’s not known yet whether Thomas had any siblings but I suspect that he probably did as there are some other Hales in the same village at the same time (a William and Eleanor Hale are having children in the same parish during the same period).

Knotting, Bedfordshire
St Margaret’s Church, Knotting

On 14th September 1686, when Thomas Hale was about 26yrs old, he married Bathsheba Jennell at Knotting parish church. Sadly, within 10 months he became a widower with Bathsheba being buried at Knotting on 21st August 1687. Research notes at show the birth of a daughter, Elizabeth in 1687, whom I’m assuming was the daughter of Bathsheba. Perhaps she died during or as a consequence of Elizabeth’s birth?

By 1689, Thomas had remarried to a woman known only (so far) as Elizabeth (possibly Elizabeth Fairy or Elizabeth Westcot – the Knotting parish registers will hopefully reveal this), and on 4th July the family returned to the Knotting parish church to christen their new son William Hale. William appears to have been the first of at least 10 children for this new family, with Giles Hale being the youngest born in 1703.

William worked as a tailor. By 1706, he had met and married Elizabeth Truelove in Potton. It was here that the couple made their home, bearing 11 children, starting with Elizabeth Hale in 1707 and ending with John Hale in 1725.

It appears that William died in 1730, with his wife following him to the grave in 1735.

The 1911 census for Knotting included a Mr Hale.

Surname Saturday: TRUELOVE

Surname Saturday theme : Truelove of Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire.

The Truelove surname is one of my favourites. More so when I discovered that my Truelove ancestor married someone with the surname of Goodsole. You can only imagine that they were therefore the ideal couple.

The earliest record of my Truelove ancestry is John Truelove and his marriage in 1671 to Eleanor Goodsole in Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire.

John is noted as a tailor and other than this scrap of information, I’ve yet to find anything else for certain about him. I’ve received a copy of a handwritten tree but this gives his death in October 1751 in Potton, Bedfordshire. I find this difficult to believe as in 1671 he would have been in his late teens or early 20s (an average guess there), which means that by 1751 he would have been around 100 years old. I’m guessing that the 1751 death may have been a son or nephew, rather than he himself.

His birth is currently elusive although I admit that I have yet to check the Leighton Buzzard records in person. However, those who I believe are his parents – Edward Truelove and Joan Pratt were married in the parish in 1654. There is one John Truelove born in 1649 to an Edward Truelove, but this is in Bishopsgate, London. If this was him, then it would appear that Edward (at the age of just 17) fathered him with a woman named Elizabeth. If this idea is correct, then Joan Pratt would be John’s step-mother.

John and Eleanor had six known child – including Elizabeth (my ancestor) who went on to marry William Hale of Knotting, Bedfordshire, and my brief coverage of my Truelove ancestry passes on.