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Elizabeth Whiting c.1776-?

Parents:         Daniel Whiting and Elizabeth Hilsdon (1,3)

Born:              c.1776 in Haverhill.

Baptised:       16th July 1776 at St Mary's Parish Church, Haverhill. (2)

Married:          John Smith on 31st December 1802 at St Mary's Parish Church, Haverhill. (1,3)

Children:        Mary Smith b.1803, Jane Smith b.1804, Sarah Smith b.1808, Rhoda Smith b.1808, Ann Smith b.1812 and James Smith b.1815

Died:                ?

 
Bio:                 The birth of Elizabeth in Haverhill is attributed to Daniel and Elizabeth 'Whiten' in the Parish Register.(2) This corruption of 'Whiting' seems quite common around this time.  Elizabeth seems to be the first child of Daniel Whiting and Elizabeth Hilsdon, and we can conclude this from the proximity of their marriage date on 19th December 1775 and the fact that there were no Whiting couples around at this time with the names Daniel and Elizabeth.

The marriage of a John Smith to Elizabeth Whiting on 31st December 1802 is recorded in the parish register of St Mary's, Haverhill. Barnabas Webb's diary (3) also makes reference to this, although he gives Elizabeth's husband the forename 'William' not 'John'. He also notes that Elizabeth was pregnant at the time.
How certain are we that this is the same Elizabeth Whiting, daughter of Daniel and Elizabeth? As there is no mention of her parents in the marriage entry it has to be said that it is really only the circumstantial evidence of her age at the time (26) and the Haverhill connection that allow us to place her as the same person. This is backed up by a lack of any obvious alternatives.

Reference is made to the birth of the child Barnabas Webb referred to in the parish baptism register.(2) Mary Smith was baptised on 12th June 1803, and had been born on 5th April that year. It is interesting to note that the father is confirmed as John Smith here, and Elizabeth's maiden name of Whiting is also mentioned.
A second daughter, Jane, is born on 4th March 1804 and baptised on 3rd June.(2)

The baptism register of the Old Presbyterian meeting house in Haverhill has several entries during the right period that give the parents of the children concerned as John and Elizabeth Smith. 
Sarah Smith was baptised there on 9th July 1809, having been born on 13th July 1808.(4) The parents are given as John and Elizabeth. Rhoda Smith(5) was also baptised on the same day, attributed to the same parents but with a birth date that doesn't quite add up. Another daughter Ann, born on 25th March 1812 and baptised 12th July 1812(6) and a son James Smith, born 2nd November 1815 and baptised on 21st July 1816(7) are also children of John and Elizabeth.

What happens to Elizabeth and John after this point remains unclear. There are no death dates that can be attributed to them with any certainty.

To be continued...
 
 
Sources:         

(1) Suffolk Records Office, Bury St Edmunds, Parish Registers of St Mary's Church, Haverhill. Fiche 578/4/

(2) SFHS. Suffolk Baptism Index. Clare Deanery 1754-1812.

(3) Barnabas Webb’s pocket-book, Suffolk Records Office, Bury St Edmunds. HA553/1

(4) Old Presbyterian Meeting House, Haverhill, register of births and baptisms,  RG4, piece 1794, folio 53. 

(5) Old Presbyterian Meeting House, Haverhill, register of births and baptisms,  RG4, piece 1794, folio 54.

(6) Old Presbyterian Meeting House, Haverhill, register of births and baptisms,  RG4, piece 1794, folio 56.

(7) Old Presbyterian Meeting House, Haverhill, register of births and baptisms,  RG4, piece 1794, folio 74.