The Journey of the Letters, #18

On March 14th of 2008, thanks to a suggestion from the archivist I emailed in Northumberland, I used the online LDS Church site, the Family Search International Genealogical Index (IGI), to access a list of infants named William Tomlinson baptized in northern England from 1823 to 1826.  

One entry really stood out for me.  It was for William Thomlinson (note the “h” after the initial “T”), baptized September 18, 1824. Will would have been just a little over a year old. The timing fit, as did the names of the parents, George and Jane Thomlinson.

What surprised me, though, was the place–a parish in Cumberland, England, by the name of Camerton. Remember, Will’s naturalization record states that he was a NATIVE of Cumberland, not Northumberland, as listed in the family history that came with the letter collection.

I googled Camerton to see where it was in Cumberland. Lo and behold, I found that it was adjacent to a village named SEATON!

The family history was correct about the Seaton part, but the Seaton where Will was born was in Cumberland, not Northumberland. Seaton, Cumberland, by the way, is east of Cockermouth, on the outskirts of the seacoast town of Workington. 

It seems that finding one thing often leads to another, so I used the IGI to search for data on Will’s parents. Once again, I hit a little jackpot. I found the christening record for Will’s mother, Jane Todhunter, who was born April 13th, 1807, and baptized a month later on May 7th, at Bridekirk, also in Cumberland. Her parents are listed as William Todhunter (mentioned in the family history) and Jane Wilson, of Bridekirk (just north of Cockermouth).

Other online databases have also surfaced listings for a George Tomlinson in the Royal Navy and as an alumna of St. John’s College, Cambridge, in Lent of 1819. Is this the same George Tomlinson as Will’s father? I don’t know, but I’m sure there is more to come.    

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