Mary Jane Woodhurst

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Brief biography

Mary Jane Woodhurst was born at Faversham in 1859 [Birth Index: Faversham 2a 595, 1859 (Dec)] of parents Daniel Woodhurst and Priscilla Hales. A descendant's report states that she was born on October 20th 1859.

The 1871 Census finds her at age "11" living with her parents at 20, Springfield Road in Tunbridge, Kent.

Her future husband was William Bonnett, born at Peckham, Surrey around early 1858 [Birth Index: Camberwell 1d 499, 1858 (March)]. The 1871 Census finds him at age "13" living with his parents Robert (a bricklayer) and Susanna - both born in Suffolk - at 4, Cheapside in Sittingbourne.

In 1879 Mary Jane married William [Marriage Index: Milton 2a 1512, 1879 (Dec)] and the following year they produced - in Sittingbourne - a child Lilian Jane.

The 1881 Census finds her living in her father's household at 210, Shortlands Road, South Side in Sittingbourne, but without her husband. With her was Lilian Jane now aged 10 months. William was meanwhile at 12, Albert Dock Terrace in Kingston-upon-Hull, Yorkshire visiting the family of his older sister Susanna who had married a shoeing smith Frederick Hatton. His occupation is given as bricklayer. Also visiting was an Emily "Bonnett" - described, like William, as married - aged "21" and born in Milton, Kent. Her origin and status are uncertain - she may have been a new partner of William.

In 1884 Mary Jane emigrated with her mother and siblings and her child to America, sailing from Liverpool on the City of Montreal and arriving at Michigan on July 26th 1884. Lilian Jane's surname is wrongly given as Woodhurst on the ship's manifest. The fate of William is currently unknown. He had probably separated from Mary Jane before she emigrated. He has not been found in UK censuses after 1881. Whichever the case, Mary Jane remarried to Orin Allen in Jackson, Michigan on July 7th 1885 [IGI: Batch M518496].

A descendant reports that Mary Jane died on July 4th 1904 aged "44 years and 8 months".

Her child by William Bonnett

  1. Lilian Jane Bonnett - [Birth Index: Milton 2a 831, 1880 (Sept)]

After her mother remarried, Lilian Jane assumed the Allen surname in later life.

Her children by Orin Allen

  1. Orin Dan Allen
  2. Melvin Allen
  3. Earl Allen
  4. Zine (or Zina?) Allen

Orin Dan Allen, a tinsmith of Alma, Michigan and aged 21, married at Windsor, Essex County (in Ontario) on September 27th 1907 to Fern A. Davison [].