Thanks for your suggestions, Mike and Jack.
Yes, lack of permission from the Commanding Officer at the time of the
first marriage is by far the most likely explanation, but there are
other possibilities; for example, it is just possible that James was
married to someone else, so the first marriage was bigamous, but that
his first wife died between 1868 and 1870, thus enabling a valid
marriage between James and Ellen in early 1871. I am looking into this.
On 15/10/2016 00:00, Jack Earnshaw wrote:
This is thought to be the reason I have a similar situation. I have a
couple, he was in the army, who got married twice in Chatham Kent in 1868.
The archivist said there had been several such "double marriages" amongst
members of the army. If they married without permission of the Commanding
Officer, then the army didn't recognise the marriage and so the wife
wouldn't be able to claim a widow's pension. His army records give his date
of marriage as the later date.
I entered both marriages as though they were true second marriages, just
that the two people were the same. Ie looking at the list of marriages there
are two with the same RINs for the couple. After he died, his widow married
again and so the list of marriages for her has husband 1 twice and then her
As they didn't have any children it doesn't affect the descendant lists etc
From: LegacyUserGroup [mailto:legacyusergroup-boun...@legacyusers.com] On
Behalf Of MikeFry
Sent: 14 October 2016 22:33
Subject: Re: [LegacyUG] Couple married twice
On 14 Oct 2016 15:57, John Francis wrote:
James Spencer (a corporal in the Grenadier Guards) married Ellen Kemp
on 24 Dec
1868 in St. Margaret's Church, Westminster. The couple then married
again on 27 Feb 1871 in the Royal Chapel in the Tower of London. I am
now looking into possible reasons for them going through two marriage
ceremonies, but my immediate problem is: how do I record the two marriages
I would be grateful for any suggestions.
I believe at that time, the soldier would have needed the permission of his
commanding officer in order to get married. Perhaps, in the eyes of the
Army, permission wasn't forthcoming until later, hence the second marriage.
Mike Fry (Jhb)
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