The Ingersolls of Lewisham I had always been told that we were related in some way to the Ingersolls, and that this was a definite feather in the family cap, but as a child I had only associated the name with wristwatches. Once I began to research the family history, however, I discovered the real relationship. I was searching the 1901 census, looking for my grandfather, Charles Frank Murray. I knew his father, Charles Frederick Murray, had died on 19th June 1892 at the Queen's Arms Tavern, Court Hill, Lewisham, and wasn't sure where the family was living, or whether his mother had re-married. I knew his birthdate and place of birth (21st January 1884, 20 Canterbury Rd., Deptford) and the names of some of his siblings. So he was not too difficult to find. I was surprised however to find that his mother was now Harriet Eliza Inkersole (45, born Rotherhithe - her birth certificate says Hammersmith, though the family did later move to Rotherhithe), his step father Frederick R. Inkersole (46 born Lewisham), and that there were two new step sisters, Emma (6) and Louisa (4). I was disappointed that the name was not exactly Ingersoll, but also pleased that what might have been family rumour was at least partly true. Harriet is a washerwoman and Frederick a gardener, their address is 27 Holbeach Rd., Catford and the family of eight is occupying 4 rooms. The Murray children are Charles F., 17, Butcher (born Walworth); Catherine, 15; Margaret, 11; Joseph, 9. My great grandmother Harriet Eliza Murray (née Paver) married her third husband Frederick Ingersoll at St Luke’s, Deptford on the 22nd January 1906. She just calls herself Eliza, and although they have been co-habiting for at least twelve years and have had three children they give separate addresses. Frederick’s father, Kemsey Ingersoll is a Veterinary Surgeon, while Harriet’s father, Joseph Paver has become the foreman at a Cotton Mill (he was an oil seed crusher, though he did rank Foreman). Next I turned to the 1881 census on FamilySearch to see if I could find out more about this Frederick R. and drew a total blank on any Frederick Inkersole of the right age born in the right place. There was however a Frederick R. Ingersoll (22, Gardener, born Lewisham) who fitted both categories, living with his mother Frances (62, Nurse, born Lewisham), and presumably his sister Frances (30, born Eltham) and her husband Thomas Norris (28, Batmaker, born Deptford). Meanwhile FreeBMD had an Emma and a Louisa Ingersoll born in the right place (Lewisham) and at the right time (1894 and 1896). Research at the Family Records Centre found a death certificate for Harriet Eliza Ingersoll, (26th Janaury 1914, Lewisham Union Infirmary), wife of Frederick Ingersoll, gravedigger, the informant being her son, C. F. Murray of 4 Engleheart Rd., Catford. At about this time I was transcribing my mother's life story and came across the following paragraph which now made more sense: “An incident that amuses me even now when I think of it, happened when I was very small, about 5 or 6, I would think (1921/22). We were visiting relations, one of Dad's stepsisters in the Lewisham/Catford area. The grown- ups were all talking family matters when I heard them saying that the Wreck of Lewisham belonged to our family and that we would go to see it. I had visions of a big boat - wrecked of course. But when we got to the river it was so tiny (called the river Quaggie I believe) I wondered where it could be. Well I remember being very disappointed at there being no wreck. Ages afterwards of course I realized it was Lewisham Recreation Ground the grown-ups had been talking about. That being in the family didn't impress me one bit. How we lost it I do not know - but we did”. The step sister must be Emma or Louisa Ingersoll - now married one assumes. As the Murrays were not landowners in Lewisham, perhaps the Ingersolls were. The next step was to get Frederick's birth certificate. His year of birth was about two years earlier than either of the censuses had said, 26th August 1857, Belmont Cottage, Lee, Kent. His father is Kemsey Ingersoll, a farrier and his mother Fanny Ingersoll, formerly Divall. At this stage I should point out that the name Divall was already very familiar to me. My great great great grandmother was Susannah Divall born in Lewisham about 1820/21. Perhaps there was another family connection here. Kemsey and Fanny's marriage certificate proved this: like Susannah, Fanny's father was John Divall, licensed victualler; more likely than not - how many John Divalls were licensed victuallers in Lewisham Village in 1815-1820? - they were sisters. At first glance Fanny’s name does not appear in the baptism register, instead a Job Divall is baptised on the 16th February 1817. There is no further trace of Job and I believe this record should be for Fanny and that the register entry is incorrect. The following record is for a Fanny Trevett born to parents Job and Sarah from Sydenham. In the 1871 census there is a Job Trevett born in Sydenham in about 1821. Whoever wrote out or transcribed the register  got the christian names of the babies transposed as Fanny Divall definitely did exist and went on to marry Kemsey Ingersoll. Kemsey's father is given as Frederick Henry Ingersoll (Gent.) on his marriage certificate. On the IGI a Kinsey Ingersoll (an obvious mis-reading of this unusual name) is recorded as being born on 13 September 1820 and christened on 4th October 1820 at Old Church, St Pancras to a Frederick Ingersoll and Mary. A general search on the name Ingersoll brought up several other children from this marriage: though Frederick seems to have been Frederick Horton Ingersoll, and not Frederick Henry. Perhaps Kemsey on his marriage certificate got his father's second name confused with his elder brother's. On 22nd July 1814 a Frederick Horton Ingersoll applied to the Vicar General's Office for a licence to marry Mary Harriot Guyer, in St Mary, Lambeth. They are both of the parish, and over twenty-one. David Ingersoll 1742-1796 Frederick Horton Ingersoll was baptised in Suffolk, Hopton Parish on the 27th March 1797. His parents were David and Francis. According to the Norfolk Chronicle of June 21st 1783 a David Ingersoll Esq., of the East Norfolk militia, had married Miss Ryley, daughter of the late Philip Kempsy Ryley Esq. on the preceding Tuesday in Thetford. The link to the eastern counties and the Lewisham Ingersolls comes in her ancestry: a Frances Rebecca Ryley was the daughter of Philip Kemsey Ryley and Frances Spratt, christened in St Gregory, Norwich on 7th October 1761. Philip Kemsey Ryley and Frances Spratt had married on 20 December 1760 in St Peter Mancroft, Norwich.The names Ryley and Kemsey appeared as forenames through many subsequent generations. But what about the David [Horton] Ingersoll who married Frances Rebecca Ryley? He was born in Great Barrington, Berkshire, Massachusetts on the 26th September 1742, the son of David Ingersoll and Submit Horton. There is a burial record for a David Ingersoll, aged 57, in the parish of Hopton, Suffolk, 18 November 1796, (born therefore around 1740). Followed up in the original register it reads: Burials 1796. November 18 David Ingersoll, late of Thetford, born in the Province of New England in North America, aged 57. and further down the page: 1797 June 27 Frances wife of the late David Ingersoll aged 36. From letters and other documents it seems that our David was the great grandson of John Ingersoll who was born in Bedfordshire in 1615. When David - an “obnoxious Tory” - fled to England in 1774 having been tarred and feathered as a Loyalist, he returned to the eastern counties.