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PIDGEONs of Biggleswade, Bedfordshire

Biggleswade was the registration district which included the villages of Clifton and Southill, in Bedfordshire.

Charles Pidgeon married Elizabeth Bodger in 1846, at Southill near Bedford, where she was born about 1823. Charles came from Huntingdon, 16 miles to the north, where he was born in 1821. His parents were Richard and Martha, but who were they?

The only Martha and Richard Pidgeon known to have been married at that time were married at Winchcombe, Gloucestershire, moved 5 miles to Stanway between 1814 and 1818, and died there in 1825 abd 1840, respectively. (See the Pidgeons of Stanway family tree.) Although it is possible that they spent a few years 100 miles away at Huntingdon, it seems unlikely that Charles would have returned there twenty-odd years later to marry Elizabeth in Bedfordshire. So the origins of Richard and Martha remain a mystery.

Charles and Elizabeth went to live in Kensington, London, where Charles worked as a silk weaver and linen draper. But what happened to Charles? He died at Margate, Kent in 1860, aged 40. In 1861 Elizabeth was widowed and back in Bedfordshire at Clifton, living off her wealth. They had two sons and five daughters. None of the daughters ever married, and all died in the Biggleswade district. The eldest son Alfred died as an infant, but what happened to the other, Charles junior? Another mystery! In 1871 he was a farming student, but after that.....?

Notes:
   ab. = about,  b. = born,  bp. = baptised,  bu. = buried,  d. = died,  m. = married,
   Places in italics = Registration districts
Richard PIDGEON (b. – d.)
   m.() Martha ? (b. – d.)
    |
    |– Anna Maria PIDGEON (b.ab.1811 – bu.18/1/1818, 6y, Huntingdon)
    |
    |– Charles PIDGEON (bp.7/8/1821, Huntingdon, Hunts – d.10/10/1860, 40y, Margate) Silk weaver, linen draper
    |      m.(8/7/1846,  Southill) Elizabeth BODGER (b.ab.1823, Southill, Beds – d.1889, 65y,  Biggleswade)
            |    1851:  at 13 Pembridge Villas, Kensington, Middlesex – Charles & Elizabeth;  Mary E, Alfred + servant
            |    1861:  at Clifton, Beds – Elizabeth (wid);  Charles, Margaret, Bertha, Martha, Kate
            |                                                                                                         + Sarah A BODGER (sister)  & servant
            |    1871:  at Farm House, Clifton – Elizabeth;  Charles, Bertha, Kate  + servant
            |    1881:  at Clifton Bury, Clifton – Elizabeth, Mary Eliz, Bertha, Martha, Kate
            |
            |– Mary Elizabeth PIDGEON (b.1848, Sydenham, Kent – d.1926, 78y,  Biggleswade) governess,
            |                                                                                                                       school teacher, music teacher
            |    1871:  at Tottesbury, Essex – Mary E (governess to children of William ANSLEY, minister)
            |    1891:  at Church End Bury Farm, Clifton – Mary E, Bertha, Kate
            |    1901:  at Smarts Lane, Meppershall, Beds – Mary E, Kate
            |    1911:  at Smarts Lane, Meppershall, Beds – Mary Elizabeth, Kate
            |
            |– Alfred PIDGEON (b.1849, Kensington – d.1854, 4y, Kensington)
            |
            |– Charles PIDGEON (b.1851, Kensington – d.)
            |
            |– Margaret PIDGEON (b.1853, Bayswater, London – d.1932, 78y,  Biggleswade)
            |    1871:  at Highbury Place, Islington, London – Margaret (scholar)
            |    1881:  at The Lindens, Boston Rd, Ealing, Midx – Margaret (governess to MEYERS children)
            |
            |– Bertha PIDGEON (b.1855, Kensington – d.1898, 43y,  Biggleswade) house keeper
            |
            |– Martha PIDGEON (b.1857,  Biggleswade – d.1881, 23y,  Biggleswade) governess
            |
           └  Kate PIDGEON (b.1859,  Biggleswade – d.)1918, 58y,  Biggleswade governess, school teacher
Updated:  16 Feb 2021
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