The Family Tree

The Franks family

Tracing the Franks family has been slow. With only two names in the whole tree (they may even be sisters), there has been little real evidence to pinpoint where they came from.

My Franks connection is through my Great x 4 Grandmother, Sarah Jane Franks, who married my Great x 4 Grandfather, Daniel Watson Giddings of March, Cambridgeshire.

Daniel Giddings' brother, James Giddings, marries a Mary Ann Franks at March, Cambridgeshire. It is currently assumed that this is the sister of Sarah Jane. However, Mary Ann died in 1824 at the age of 24, just six years into her marriage.

On the 1861 Census, Sarah Jane Giddings (née Franks) states that her place of birth is "Copenforth, Norfolk". This may have been a mis-spelling by the enumerator or maybe he misheard her, as there is no matching parish of that name in the UK. Alternatively, there is a tiny village called Coppingford just a few miles West of March, in what was then Huntingdonshire (now Cambridgeshire). Perhaps this was her place of birth.

After checking on the Mormon's Familysearch.org website, I found a Sarah Franks, born in 1802, along with a sister called Mary, born in 1799 - so the dates match... but they were both christened in Ashfordby, Leicestershire. Their parents are given as Matthew and Alice Franks.

When reading through the rest of the 1861 census for March, Cambridgeshire, where Sarah Jane had stated her mystery birthplace, there is another Franks family - potentially a brother for Sarah (and Mary Ann), called William Franks. He is aged 56 and living with his wife Ann, aged 57. They both give their birthplace as Guyhirn. Guyhirn is only just a few miles North from March.

With all this information seemingly competing as 'the truth', my research has stumbled with the Franks family.