James Wills (1791-1847) & Martha Wawman (1803-1891)

After completing the biographical sketch for one of the Great War dead, namely, William Alfred Begley (1896-1918), on the 9th July 2014, I decided to "tidy up" that branch of the Wawman family tree to which Mr Begley belonged, and then publish the findings to this web site. Here it is, two months later, and even allowing for a transcontinental move of our household from northern Alberta to the more familiar territory and climes of southwestern Ontario in the interim, this task has proven to be much more demanding than I'd anticipated. I found myself chasing down numerous leads and fleshing out the twigs and leaflets of this branch of the Wawman family tree. Yes, this is just one branch of the Wawman family tree!

Research of the Wawman family was commenced by Keith William Wawman (1929-2009) and his cousin's wife, Jean Spears Wawman. Their work is considerable but, most unfortunately, came to me without any source citations, whatsoever. Without the sources, it is necessary to vouch all their findings to source documents, in order to adhere to rigorous research standards. In the process, I intend to append all the sources and transcriptions to the genealogical research findings published in this web site. On discovering the work published on this site, the prudent family historian should still adopt an attitude of healthy skepticism and make efforts to corroborate the findings produced here.

This branch of the Wawman family tree follows from the marriage, in 1824, of James Wills (1791-1847) and Martha Wawman (1803-1891), both of Daventry, Northamptonshire. This family history report presents five generations.

Most of the individuals in this tree were of humble origins, working as domestic servants or agricultural labourers. This family history report provides interesting context from newspaper sources. Then, as now, newspaper editors sought out the sensational stories and, while the articles make interesting reading, they do not portray the day-to-day routines, the rigours required of domestic service or field labour, and the hardworking natures of most of our ancestors. Yet, the effects, or fallout, on families, even across generations, of certain events cannot be denied, either. With these caveats in mind, be sure to check out the links in the following sections:

More local history flavour may be gleaned from newspaper transcripts, sorted by village/town and county:

The scope of these newspaper transcriptions is limited to members of the Wawman family, of Northamptonshire, and their near relatives.

This branch also suffered its share of losses and bereavement as a result of the Great War. Under the heading, We shall remember them, look for the following cousins in this branch of the Wawman family:

  • William Alfred Begley (1896-1918), of Floore, Northamptonshire
  • Robert Ashby Cory (1895-1917), of Harpole, Northamptonshire
  • Charles Felix Wills (1884-1915), of Everdon, Northamptonshire

You may also wish to obtain more context about the village of Everdon, Northamptonshire from contemporary gazetteers.

Finally, no research report is complete without identifying its limitations and room for further research: for these, please refer to the research pending pages for the Wawman and Wills surnames.

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© Alison Kilpatrick, 2014. All rights reserved.
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"The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there."—Lesley Poles Hartley (1895–1972), The Go-Between (1953).

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