Answers to Questions


CROCKETT, Shenley & Greenwich, Late 19th century

May, 200




Carol Stanley (cccjs_2000 @t of Cawston, British Colombia, Canada. has been trying for more than five years to find the birth certificate for Frederick Crockett, born 1862. He is my great grandfather.  We have him listed in the 1901 census as being born at Titan Under Green.  and living in the Civil Parish of Greenwich, Ecclesiatical Parish of St. George. County of London  Source info RG13/541 Folio 101 Page 76 Household Schedule No. 499.  We have his Marriage certificate of 1883 from St. Paul Church in the Parish of New Southgate in the County of Middlesex  Spouse is Harriett Tuck. Also have birth certificates of 5 of their children. William James born 1885 Greenwich East County of KentFrederick John born 1887 Greenwich East  County of KentElizabeth born 1890 Greenwich East County of LondonHarold George born 1893 Charlton County of LondonFrank Archibald (my Grandfather) born 1896 Greenwich East County of London. There is also mention of a Lillian and an Eva.  My sister at one time enlisted help from a gentleman in England, with no success.  We know he existed and have found him in three different censuses. The 1881 census, the 1891 census and the 1901 census. In 1881 he is living with his parents, William Crockett and Eliza(beth) nee Reens, at Green Street, District of Shenley, Hertfordshire.  In the 1891 census it says he was born in Hertfordshire, living at Civil Parish Shenley Ecclesiatical Parish Shenley, County Hertfordshire R.D. Barnet  Source Info. RG121052 Folio 46 Sub Reg. South Mimms  If you can shed any more light on the place of Titan Under Green I would appreciate it.  I can not find it on a map and have used all the internet sources I can.  I live out in the country and very seldom get to the city.  That is not to say that I can't, just very seldom do.  Frederick Crockett came to Canada some time after 1901, lived in Ontario, Canada till 1915 when he was kicked in the head by a horse and died. My parent (Dad) was killed  over 30 years ago, so cannot get info from him.  His sister and brother do not remember any pertinent info.  So we know all the info, just can't seem to find his birth certificate, which is what we are really looking for

Many things can go wrong with census returns, and it is important to realise that a lot of people could not read or write. Someone would have had to write the information down, and may have misheard, or failed to make the question clear. The handwriting may be poor, and may have been transcribed (or later indexed) incorrectly.

 As you have been unable to find the birth certificate from the online indexes, let us start with what we are given in the 1881 census, when the family were living at Green Street, Shenley, Herts, and work backwards:

 Name  Relation Age Birthplace Occupation
 William CROCKETT   Head   46   London   Labourer 
 Eliza CROCKETT   Wife   46   London    
 Frederick CROCKETT   Son   19   London   Labourer 
 John CROCKETT   Son   16   London   Labourer 
 Arthur CROCKETT   Son   10   London   Labourer 
 Walter CROCKETT   Son   8   London    

Walter Crocket FreeBMD has the Reference "Dec 1873 Barnet 3a 138" and the 1901 census shows Walter Crockett as being born in Shenley, which is in the Barnet registration district.  If you purchase the birth certificate you will almost certainly find his parents were William and Eliza(beth) and they may well have lived at Green Street. It looks as if the 1881 census places of birth are wrong - possibly due to an over enthusiastic use of "ditto".

Arthur Crockett: FreeBMD has Arthur William Crockett with the Reference "Dec 1871 Berkhampstead 3a 399" and the 1901 census shows a 28 year old William born at Tring - which is in the Berkhamsted registration district. Might be relevant. You would need to get the birth certificate to be sure. (There are several families of Crockett living in the Tring area, see WELLS/CROCKETT, Tring, mid 19th century, which may or may not be related to your William so considerable care must be taken before jumping to conclusions.)

John Crockett: FreeBMD has John Joseph Crockett with the Reference "Sept 1863 St Albans 3a 292" This could be significant for reasons given below - but needs checking. The best 1901 fit would appear to be a 28 year old John giving his place of birth as "Barnet, Kent" (Shenley is in the Barnet registration district, and "Herts" is sometimes mis-transcribed/indexed as "Kent") See My Ancestors in the 1901 Census for examples of the kinds of errors that occur in census transcripts.

Frederick Crockett: FreeBMD has Frederick William Crockett with the reference "Sep 1862 St George East 1c 407" relating to a birth in the East End of London, and I would assume, from what you say, that you have already ruled this out. It is not impossible that either his birth was not registered or it was lost in the indexing process.

William and Eliza Crockett: FreeBMD has the marriage of a William Crocket in London, reference "Jun 1859 St Luke 1b 789". It lists two grooms but only one bride on the page - so there must be an indexing error somewhere. (See A Comedy of Errors .) As the surname Reens is uncommon, but there is a family of that name living in the St Lukes registration district in 1881, it is possible that the bride was Eliza(beth) Reens and that this is the relevant marriage. If you haven't got the certificate it needs to be followed up. There is, of course the possibility of a child between 1859 and 1862 and this could give another lead.

In the light of the above can we identify "Titan under Green"? The answer is almost certainly yes - and if you purchase John's birth certificate you could well find he was born there. There is a small hamlet to the south east of St Albans, in St Peters parish and in the St Albans registration district, called Tyttenhanger Green - and if this was taken down verbally by the census enumerator in Greenwich (who would be very unlikely to have heard of it) one can understand the mistake. It is only a few miles to the north of Shenley, while Green Street is to the south of Shenley.

An important extra check would be to locate the family in the 1871 census. They may be at the address given in Walter Crockett's birth certificate, or that in Arthur's certificate, assuming that is the right Arthur. This should throw more light on Frederick's place of birth, and may also reveal any children who had left home by the 1881 census.

If you can add to the information given above tell me.