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My direct ancestor Stephen Bumstead was a fisherman in Hastings Sussex who died at sea at the age of 33.

His age matches exactly to a Stephen Bumstead who was baptised in Hastings in 1809 to parents William and Elizabeth.

However there are no other children baptised about the time to William and Elizabeth.

The only marriage of a William Bumstead and Elizabeth before 1809 is in 1797 in Hastings and is to William Bumstead and Elizabeth Kent. A son William was born 1798 and no more births until this one in 1809. Although this is possible it seems unlikely for the times that such a gap should occur, but it is also possible that William and Elizabeth had other children elsewhere – but none have been found.

It raised enough doubt in my mind not to include Elizabeth Kent and her son William on the Gedcom at the moment.

Stephen Bumstead married Ann Foster and their children were baptised in Hastings. One of the children was baptised in a double baptism with a child of an Edward Bumstead. This usually suggests a family connection between Stephen and Edward.

Edward Bumstead was found to be born in 1812 to a William and MARY Bumstead. William Bumstead married Mary Pumphrey in 1807 in Hastings, he was a widower. No baptisms were found to the couple until 1812 when Edward was born followed by least three other sons.

It is beginning to look as though there might be a Register mistake and Stephen’s baptism should read to William and Mary. His baptism would fit nicely between the marriage of William to Mary in 1807 and the birth of Edward in 1812. However more proof is needed.

The names of Stephen’s children yield no clues as his first child was named Mary Ann and the second Elizabeth.

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