Maureen StoreyThe Sole Society, a Family History Society researching Sole, Saul, Sewell, Solley and similar names

SOLE Co-ordinator's Report December 2012

by Maureen Storey  




I would like to welcome two new members: Phil Sole and Andy Parker.


Phil is trying to find out more about his fatherís family and asked if we had any information that could help. Our records show that Philís family stem from the marriage of James Soale and Margery (or Mary) Lassiter/Laceter who married in Ashurst, SSX, on 5 May 1640. Philís branch of the family moved from Sussex to Surrey in the mid-1850s, eventually settling in Guildford by about 1900.


Andy is investigating his wifeís maternal ancestors and is particularly interested in discovering more about Albert Henry Sole (b 1908 in Stepney) and his siblings William James Sole (b 1904 in Mile End) and Dorothy Mary Alice Sole (b 1916 Stepney). The family has been traced back to William Sole and Sarah Holmans, who married in Herne, KEN, in 1768.


Chris Stranex wrote to us from South Africa to ask if we had any information about his grandfather Eric Sole and if we knew who Ericís grandparents were. Although we only have very limited information on Eric, we were able to identify Ericís grandparents as Henry John Sole (b 1853 in Erchamston, South Africa) and Esther Alicia Lloyd (b 1855) and his great grandparents as Alfred Sole (b ca 1820, possibly in Sheppey, KEN) and Caroline Pankhurst (b ca 1820). Alfred and Caroline are believed to have emigrated to South Africa in 1852.


Laura Ellen Soole was the subject of a query from Mark Churcher. On Lauraís son Jamesí birth certificate the motherís name is given as Laura Ellen Wyeth, late Welch, formerly Soole, but other than this all heíd been able to find out about her background was that, according to the 1901 census, she was born in Portland, Dorset in 1873. Lauraís marital history is a bit of a puzzle as, although the banns were called for the marriage of Laura Ellen Soole and Thomas Welch at All Saints Walworth in 1891, there is no indication that the couple ever married Ė their marriage doesnít appear in the London marriage registers at the London Metropolitan Archives and isnít listed in the GRO indexes. And just to confuse matters even further, in 1901 Laura seems to appear in the registers twice: once with her second Ďhusbandí James Wyeth (they married in 1899) and once with her parents, where she is listed as Laura Soole and is said to be single! Perhaps there were two Laura Ellen Sooles, but we have no other evidence to support this hypothesis.


Matthew Moat has continued to keep the Society informed of his progress in investigating his family which has been traced back to John Sole and Elizabeth Cook, who married in Nackington, KEN, in 1750. Matthew has kindly sent us a list of all the Sole events found in the Bekesbourne and Fordwich parish registers.


David Hammarstrom, who has written several books on the circus (the latest being Inside the Changing Circus: A Criticís Guide), e-mailed to ask if we had any information on Gerard Soules, a noted trapeze artiste and dog trainer. He had seen Gerardís obituary, which appeared in Soul Search in 1995, and wondered if we could confirm that Gerard was born in Canada as was claimed in the obituary. Unfortunately we have not so far been able to find out anything about Gerardís origins: we know a little about his circus career, but the only other information we have is that he was born about 1937, was murdered on 4 June 1992 and had a brother called James, who on Gerardís death inherited an historic carousel. Gerard had found the 1927 carousel in a barn in Mystique, Michigan and bought it for $25,000. After Gerardís death, James restored the carousel to working order and set it up in St Augustine, Florida, where it is still operated by members of the family.


In the last edition of Sole Search I described how I had used Trove (, the digitised archive of Australian newspapers, to find information about Charles May Soul and his brother Augustus May Soul. In that edition we published newspaper extracts about Charles and on page 21 of this edition there are extracts about Augustus who was curator of Adelaide Art Gallery.



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