East Anglian Ancestors

Norfolk & Suffolk genealogy

Fressingfield Names

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The Fressingfield Witch is my marmite book for genealogists.  It’s a good story (though I say so myself), but I’ve used some real historical figures and ordinary folk from the 1891 census.  I’m not keen on pigeon-holing books so blended genres get my vote every time, but genealogy is largely based on weeding fact from guess work and the blurring of boundaries may be divisive.

There’s something compelling about giving a voice to unknown ancestors.  Everyone has heard of Winston Churchill and Jane Austen, while long dead George Corbyn and Elijah Scoggins rest in eternal obscurity.  Well, not any more.  I would be interested to hear your opinions, though. Should ancestors be left to rest in literary peace, or is it reasonable to resurrect them at the risk of second-guessing their personalities?

For any genealogists out there with connections to Fressingfield in the 1890’s and Suffolk and Essex in the times of the Witch Trials, real surnames used in the book are below:

ADAMSON ETHERIDGE LAIT
ALDUS FAIRCLOUGH MCELLIOT
BRAME FALE MILLS
CALAMY GLANFIELD POWLEY
CALVER GODBOLD RAVEN
CARTER GOODING RAYNER
CHAPMAN HAMMOND RICHES
CORBYN HARPER SCOGGINS
DOWSING HARRIS SMART
EDWARDS HOPKINS STEARNE
ELLIOTT KING WARNE

 

 

Author: Jacqui Beard

Wife, mother, & property/finance professional having an obsession with genealogy bordering on the unhealthy. I live just north of Cheltenham with my family, a grumpy border terrier and four plump, friendly chickens. When not “playing with dead people,” as my husband so charmingly puts it, I can be found pottering around the garden or writing.

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