Bill's Genealogy Blog

Bill Buchanan is a long-time genealogy enthusiast, living in Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada. This blog will describe my experiences as I research my family history and help others.

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Location: Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada

I am a retired online school teacher. I love family history. Since 2007, I have spent much of my time providing part-time support for the world's largest free family history site This is very rewarding. I have helped others with the Family Tree and related FamilySearch products.
In 2010-2018 Iserved in the Edmonton Riverbend Family History Centre. I have a FHC blog at Bill's Family History Center Blog For information the Latter-day Saints and family history click

Friday, October 06, 2017

Will the Real James Wright Please Stand up?

Here is part of a genealogy chart given to me by my mother's first cousin Jessie Evans Wright in 1963.

The Mr & Mrs Wright are Charles Wright and Mary Ann Grant from Carleton Rode, Norfolk, England. Samuel is my great grandfather, who married Charlotte Harriet Eley, and gave her the brooch that has been passed down in our family and worn by 5 successive generations of brides.

The problem is Jim or James. He appears nowhere in the official records. He was never born, registered, or appeared as a member of the family in any census. 

But Jessie's chart is missing Alexander Wright, who appears in all the public records.

An email message this week from a descendant of Benjamin Wright ("Ben" in Jessie's chart), brought me back to this puzzle. Looking closely at James and Alexander, I noticed that James' children had the same names as some of Alexander's children.

Alexander Wright (c.1849)
sp: Emma Elizabeth York (b.1850)
 Charles William Wright (b.1870)
 Alexander John Wright (b.1872)
 Samuel Wright (b.1873)
 Emma Elizabeth Wright (b.1875)
 Thomas Wright (b.1877)
 George Wright (b.1879)
 Louis Wright (b.1885)
 Albert Wright (b.1887)
 Alice Wright (b.1890)

I checked the military records of Alexander's son Charles William Wright, a military career that spanned 30 years, retiring with the rank of Company Quarter Master Sergeant. His record included service in India, Mauritius, and South Africa. He had a bullet wound in the thigh. A handful of medals are listed in his record, maybe not a VC (Victoria Cross), but a YC ... whatever that is. This Charles certainly fits the profile of "James" Wright's son Charles.

In one place he lists his father's given names as Alexander Wm, and in another as Alexandera James!

I think I have the answer. Alexander may be the name used on all of his official records, but maybe he sometimes used James as a nickname with family and close friends.

I wonder where I could find official documentation of Albert Wright catching "a well known German spy in the west end of London during 1st World War". It seems like an interesting story!


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