22 January 2009

Where was I . . ?

Before I so easily sidetracked myself last time, I had a plan. So let me start to ramble about Thomas Staden.

So far, he's the oldest "connected" Staden I can claim, as discovering information about him has been really quite difficult. What I know so far is that he married Sarah Dodd on 8th February 1801 in Keston in Kent and he & Sarah begat eight known sons. And that's it.

Until yesterday . . . . . I think. Whilst perusing the Google offerings, I saw one link to The National Archives (to give them their Capital Letters) taking me to a Register of Allotments. This is not a long list of horticultural spaces but rather a Royal Navy term for the sending of wages to next of kin and brought forth the following:-

Thomas Staden, Ship's Name: HMS Dart, Pay book number: SB39, Rank: Landsman, Relation: Mother Jane, When alloted: 1799.

Now, at the risk of being accused of A-level standard leaping-to-conclusions (which, incidentally, will probably be the only exercise I get tomorrow if the promised rain in the form of stair-rods materialises first thing), I might just consider adopting this Thomas as one of mine. The fact of his mother's name might just help me in deciding whether he's a Derbyshire Staden or a Devon Staden - I suppose that if he came from Chatsworth he could be both, ho ho!

A Landsman, by the way, turns out to be an inexperienced sailor/a sailor on his first voyage., according to an online dictionary. I think I might just double-check that one.

Onwards, to decide the direction of my next Staden foray. North or South . . ? Hmmmmmm.

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