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Sarah Smith née Talbot was born in 1827 and baptised in Peldon Church. The daughter of an agricultural labourer, Thomas Talbot, and his wife Sarah née Bibby, she spent her life in Peldon and married William Smith in 1850. They had five daughters and three sons.
In 1890/1, as a widow in her sixties and living with her son William, Sarah adopted a child Elsie Cathleen Ellen Ham. The story, passed down through the family, tells of Sarah, as she was on her way to collect water from the village pump on Lower Road, Peldon, meeting a young mother carrying a baby. The mother told Sarah she was making her way to the village pond to drown the baby but Sarah intervened and offered to take the child.
Elsie was brought up in Sarah's family and can be found in the 1891 census aged 1 listed as a 'nursechild' living with Sarah and William. In the 1901 census, aged 11, Elsie is described as an adopted daughter. The cottage they are living in by the 1911 census, Goings Cottage, [see The Mystery of Honor Villa and Goings Cottages] belonged to Sarah's niece's husband and was to remain in Elsie's family, the Millers, [see The Miller Family] until the present day (2021).
Sarah died in 1917.
Photo: Mersea Museum - Phillip Conway
Image ID PCN_001
Category 1 Places-->Peldon-->People
This image is part of the Mersea Museum Collection.