21 June, 2009 at 11:15 #532Anonymous
Info from Jonathan
In the 1851 census John Hunt, aged 24, was living with his mother, Keziah Hunt (nee Free) in Middleton, next door to his Widowed Aunt, Caroline Free, late Cole, some 13 years older than he was. One night in August 1848 John hopped over the fence, or perhaps in the harvest field, and had a bit of fun with Caroline. Maybe it was even in the local churchyard (next door other side) where his father, verger for many years, lay peacefully buried (and in that case their gymnastics may have caused him many a turn in his coffin)
In any case nature continued her course and in May 1849 Simon Baker Free was born and baptised 3rd June 1850, as illegitimate. In March 1851 John went again for another little game. This time probably family and local pressure persuaded him to marry Caroline on 19th October 1851 and in December daughter Susanna was born and baptised 7th December 1851.
In due course Simon Baker Free added Hunt as his third Christian name and became Simon Baker Hunt Free.
At the marriage John Hunt was described as a Labourer; his father John Hunt was a Shoemaker but deceased by this time. Caroline's father was a Farmer and the witnesses were Daniel Brown and Mary Ann Brown. Only John Hunt signed his name, the others all signed by their mark.
By the 1861 census John and Caroline had five children and John was deaf (it is unlikely this is a typo for dead)
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