Marriage Banns and Putting Faces to NamesPosted: 31 Dec 2012
This week’s entry in the 50 Marriage Mondays series took place on a Saturday and the banns were read on Tuesdays.
Bride: Julia Ann Coulson, known as Jue
Groom: Albert Herbert William Proctor, known as Billy
Date: 2 January 1909
Location: All Saints church, Hitcham
Witnesses: Albert Walter Coulson, Lizzie Coulson
The Marriage Act 1753, commonly called Lord Hardwick’s Act stipulated that a marriage would be void if it had not been preceded by the reading of banns or the issue of a licence. Public notice of an intended marriage gave objectors the opportunity to make their case against it. The act further stated that the banns should be published on three consecutive Sundays. The banns for this marriage were published on the 6th, 13th and 20th October 1908, three consecutive Tuesdays. However, this would not invalidate the marriage. Although the law made publishing of banns mandatory, it only gave directives on the details of the procedure.
The Marriage Act 1823 simplified procedures, only requiring the parties to give their true names and abode to the clergyman, but introduced a time limit of three months after which banns would have to be republished. This marriage, solemnised 2 months and 27 days after the publication of the first bann, was just in time.
I do not have a wedding photograph of Jue and Billy, but do have some later photographs.
The witnesses, Albert Walter Coulson and Lizzie Coulson were siblings of Jue.
Photographs in collections of several family members feature people that have been identified as Jue, Billy and the two witnesses.
 Probert, Rebecca (2012) Marriage Laws for Genealogists. Takeaway: Kenilworth. p. 87.
© Sue Adams 2012