Catherine Saggers & Susan Alexander, Chelmsford area, Essex, England, 1834.

Agricultural fair organizers in England often rewarded local people for their thrift and long service. It’s not so often we see women in the lists.

At the Chelmsford Agricultural Society Show in 1834, Susan Alexander (probably of Mountnessing) received 20 shillings as a prize for “having lived under the same mistress 34 years” and for maintaining her “good character” all those years.

At the same time, Catherine Saggers (probably of Great Baddow) was given 10 shillings for her 11 years service with the same master and mistress. Chelmsford Chronicle, 19 December, 1834, page 4. Both prizes were reported as well in the Essex Herald, 16 December, 1834, page 2.

A Catherine Saggers married John Jackson in Great Baddow in the fall of 1835, on the 22 October. If this was the same Catherine, she and John had 2 children, but it appears she died in 1839 and was buried at St Mary the Virgin Church in Great Baddow.

I hope to learn more about her and would welcome any information.


Marriage Register, St. Mary the Virgin, Great Baddow, Essex, England, Family History Library film: 001471808 and “England, Essex Parish Registers, 1538-1997,” database, FamilySearch. John Jackson and Catherine Saggers, 22 Oct 1835; citing Marriage, Great Baddow, Essex, England, Essex Record Office, England.

Burial register, St. Mary the Virgin, Great Baddow, Essex, England, shows Catherine Jackson, born 1810. Family History Library film: 001471808.

A Numerical Puzzle – John Saggers of Stebbing, Essex, England,1903.

Discovery is the theme for the Guild of One-Name Studies Blog Challenge 2021

It was a bit of a surprise to see something like this identified with someone with the Saggers surname. John Saggers’ puzzle and his instructions give us a hint of his personality, something we so rarely glimpse. Discoveries like this keep me researching on through the ‘dry days’.

From the Chelmsford Chronicle (Essex County Chronicle), 8 May 1903, page 4 – the “Today’s Questions” column.

Mr. John Saggers writes from Stebbing: – “I have found this to puzzle many who have tried it: ‘Put the nine figures – 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 – in any position so that, when added together, they amount to 100. Each of the figures must be used once, and only once.’ Will your readers try it?”

Located in FindMyPast’s newspaper search, British Newspaper Archive, May 2021.

I have yet to discover (confirm) which particular John Saggers this was – but I do see there is likely a family connection to British Columbia, Canada where I live. Perhaps another discovery for the future.

Stebbing War Memorial with the spire of TL6624 : St Mary the Virgin, Stebbing, Essex, England in the background. Courtesy Glyn Baker, the photographer: CC BY-SA 2.0 license, For more of these photographs, see Geograph.

Meet the Guild of One-Name Studies

Interested in joining the Guild of One-Name Studies? Or in learning more about the Guild? Whether you are ready to register a surname study or not, joining the Guild will be of great benefit to your research. The Guild offers research indexes, a wiki with worldwide genealogy information, webinars and seminars, publications, including the Guild’s quarterly journal, and a webforum, email list and Facebook and regional groups for all members, with additional specialized assistance for those who register their surname studies.

Best of all is the enthusiasm and assistance you’ll gain from contacting and perhaps working with other Guild members, near and far.

Guild members are at Virtual NERGC 2021 – the New England Regional Genealogical Consortium conference which features live and on-demand sessions. It’s not too late to register. The Guild of One-Name Studies has a virtual booth at the conference in the Virtual Exhibit Hall. Members will be on hand to acquaint you with the Guild’s activities and to answer your questions. See the Guild’s booth schedule on the conference website. The Virtual NERGC 2020 conference e-zine, available here, has updates.

The Hall is free for anyone interested, and will be open all day and all night for 61 days; exhibitors offer information and can schedule appointments and/or video chats. Follow this link to register for the conference; you can also select free registration for “Exhibit Hall Only.”

New Beginnings….bittersweet

Once again for 2021, there is a Guild of One-Name Studies Blog Challenge. Hashtag – #guildblogchallenge

The prompt for March is “New Beginnings”.

Recently in discussing the hazardous trips many families and individuals took in emigrating to North America, and indeed, across America, and to many other places, I said I thought they, especially the women, were brave – to leave all the familiar places, no matter how desperate for a new start, to realize you likely could never return. I realize some would see it as an adventure, others might be optimistic for future benefits, but to many, including those left behind, it must have often felt overwhelming.

A while ago I read a short understated note in a newspaper about my great aunts that brought this home for me.

From The Essex County Chronicle (Chelmsford Chronicle), 26 April, 1907, page 4.

“Among others from North Essex who have emigrated to Canada are the three daughters of Mr. D. Saggers of Burton-End Farm, Stansted… The scene when the Misses Saggers left Stansted Station was very affecting.” Accessed originally at FindMyPast.

Now this might also be a warning not to take newspapers too literally. Four Saggers sisters left England bound for Vancouver in March, 1907, Constance, Ethel, Elsie and Dora. Ethel had been to Canada before though, and her entry was stamped “Ret’d Canadian”. Had she spent her time back in England convincing them all to leave England for Vancouver, promising them similar weather, great gardening, beautiful beaches and snow capped mountains too? (And on the quiet, mentioned the many eligible bachelors of Vancouver?)

If so, she was successful.

Very soon after, her father and mother followed with her brother, Charles, and the remaining sisters, Florence, and Sarah, my grandmother. (Brother Herbert had gone ahead, alone, some years before. That’s another story.)

But without their journeys, I wouldn’t be here! Or my Saggers study.

Those of you who’ve visited Vancouver will like this glimpse of the busy, growing city the Saggers family came to – in an enhanced version of the first film of Vancouver, taken Tuesday, May 7, 1907 by photographer William Harbeck.

1907 Tram Ride in Vancouver (Granville Street). #Restored​ in #4K​, #60FPS​, #Colorized​, #Stabilized​ with Sound by regnittuB.

Or see it at Vancouver is Awsome:

Missing Friends – Ada, Frances, Tom and Harry Saggers

Local newspapers used to feature “Missing Friends” columns often. This one was from the Vancouver Sun, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, 14 December 1930, on page 22 – The “Page of Old Country News”.

SAGGERS (Ada, Frances, Tom and Harry) believed to be living in Crisp Street, Limehouse, London. Inquirer niece Miss Ella Saggers, 30 Monkton Terrace, Jarmy [Jarrow?], Co, Durham.

Vancouver Sun, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, 14 December 1930 – The “Page of Old Country News”, page 22.

Surnames of those searched for and those searching are: Basterifield / Ludford; Hendon / Button; Hudson / Allen; McVeigh; Russell / Panks; Saggers; Sharpley; Wilde or Smith / Powell. Google News, digitized historical newspapers, link to this article:

Currently, June 2020, is opening up one of its genealogy collections free each day. There are two Canadian ones to come:

Canada Newspapers, 1752-2007, free on June 15, and

1921 Canada Census, free on June 16.

I couldn’t wait, so off to MyHeritage to see what I could find. With a free search, I found an interesting sounding Saggers result which told me the article was from the Vancouver Sun and gave the date. I did go to which has the Vancouver Sun indexed and searchable, but no result came up.

However, I remembered that, years ago now, Google experimented with digitizing newspapers including some Vancouver Suns. It’s easy to find a newspaper by date if it was included. And there it was! No problem for me to go through the pages and find the article. (Of course, I like to read all or almost all the pages anyway. Great Christmas ads!)

I wonder if these are the newspapers included in MyHeritage’s collections? If so, bravo! as Google’s search for those papers is not that useful.

The 1921 Canadian census is available free too with page images at both Library and Archives Canada and Ancestry (register to search). But I have often said that if one search is good, two or three are better! Indexing is a difficult job; errors seem inevitable, so knowing there are other databases or indexes available can be very helpful.

Randy Seaver, at GeneaMusings, has a list of all the MyHeritage collections to be offered for free this month with the dates. It’s worth a close look.

“Taking Up the Challenge”

The latest edition of the Guild’s Journal of One-Name Studies (April-June 2020) has an article “Taking Up the Challenge” by Melody McKay Burton about the 2020 Guild 10-Blog Challenge which the Saggers Study particlpated in. One of the first Saggers articles is mentioned – on Sarah Saggers’ Christmas Pudding. Goodness! Christmas seems almost another time and place now that many have been ‘staying home’ for so long.

In May, I added my own great uncle Bert Saggers to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission’s “Wall of Remembrance”.

The most recent challenge the Saggers Study has been involved in is the 21 Day Connections Experiment over at my personal genealogy blog, CanadaGenealogy, or, Jane’s Your Aunt. See more about this Experiment here. One of the Experiment blog articles (Day 12) was about Sarah Saggers’ photograph album. If you would like to see her photos, contact me via this website. I have scanned the album and would be happy for you to see them if you think there might be a connection. And quite a while ago, I transcribed her last address book and put the names online, so you might find a connected name or a familiar address there. (Rogers-Saggers, Vancouver, BC – 1940s-1950s address book.)

Sarah Saggers Photograph Album – A page.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Best wishes for health and happiness.

I’ve been working on the few Irish connections I’ve seen for Saggers families and would be happy to hear from anyone with a Saggers individual or family who lived or worked in Ireland or had Irish parents or grandparents. Please contact me via this website or at: canadagenealogy @

My own Saggers families have no Irish connections made (yet) but I do have lots in my Irwin families – mostly from County Cavan as far back as I can see at the moment.

There is one Irish Elin Saggers in Canada that I’d like to know more about. She’s listed in the 1861 census as a widow, 46 years old, so born about 1815, in Dublin, Ireland. She cannot read or write. She is living on a 1/4 acre with an Alfrid Clarke, age 12, born in London, Canada West. Both are Church of England.

Alfred may be the Alfred A Clarke, aged 1, born in Canada, listed in the 1851 census with John F. Clarke MD, 25 years old, born in England, and Susannah Clarke, 23 and Joseph W Clarke, 3, born in Canada, If so, I know more about this family, although not about Susannah’s parents. Dr. John F. Clarke was well known at the time.

Library and Archives Canada has Elin and Alfred indexed in the 1861 census as Elin Laggers and Sophia Clarke, as does Ancestry, but I believe that’s incorrect. Findmypast has them as Elin Saggers and Alfred Clarke. Library and Archives Canada 1851 census entry:

Census Year: 1861 Item Number: 1494954
Surname: Clarke Given Name(s): Sophia Age: 12
Province: Canada West (Ontario) District Name: London (City)
Sub-District Name: Ward no 11
View digitized page of Census of 1861 (Canada East, Canada West, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia) for Image No.: 4391537_00665
JPG (Image No.: 4391537_00665)
PDF (Image No.: 4391537_00665)

LAC Index page:

Spring is coming – Dandelion Wine

I’m happy to see that Spring is coming soon – on Thursday, March 19, early this year. And springtime makes me think of – dandelions! Here is my Grandma Sarah Saggers recipe for Dandelion Wine.

Barn and Dandelions: Along Castlederg road, north of Bolton, Ontario, Canada. Photograph by Allen McGregor, Flickr, CC by 2.0.

Dandelion Wine

1 gallon dandelion flowers

1 gallon boiling water

pour water over flowers and let stand 48 hours

then strain in stone jar add 4 lemons &

4 oranges cut into slices, 4 pounds sugar

& one yeast cake (fleishmans) and a package

of raisins, stir well & stand in a cool place.

Stir several times a day until ferman-

tation ceases & keep covered, in two weeks

strain & add 1 tea spoons bitter almond

then bottle & keep in cool dark place.

if possible let stand six weeks before


Grandma Sarah Frances Saggers, handwritten recipe book, Dandelion Wine, personal collection.

Note: Grandma Sarah was from England, and likely never saw dandelions except there and in British Columbia. Here is a website with an amazing number of kinds of dandelions in the UK – Wild Flower Finders:

Saggers photos – colourized

MyHeritage last week announced a new service – colourizing of photographs. I tried it out with a few of mine.

I know there’s a bit of angst online about this. But truly the world was full of colour before the development of colour film.

And it is certainly a fun thing to do. And may provoke some interest in all those ‘non-gen’ relatives out there.

You will see one in the header above. And one below.

The photo above shows my own Saggers family about 1905 in England before their emigration to Canada.

The photo below shows some of the Saggers families in Vancouver, British Columbia in July of 1929. Mothers are in the back row; kids in the front. My dad, George William Rogers, is the boy on the very end. Although his pants look like jeans in this colourized version, I suspect they were really dark grey or possibly brown fabric. However, blue jeans would certainly have lasted longer – I think he was quite an active kid!

If you’d like to try this out, go to MyHeritage – Colorize Your Heritage. If you are not a subscriber, you can do 10 photos free; if you are a full subscriber, there’s no limit and it’s free. Non-subscribers will have a small MyHeritage logo on their photos as below. The little palette logo signifies that the photo was colourized.

Read more at My Heritage about the colourization process, licensed by MyHeritage from DeOldify, created by Jason Antic and Dana Kelley. And about how MyHeritage is handling these photos.

MyHeritage would like to know if you might be interested in colourizing old black and white films in your possession. Contact them if you are.

Through Her Eyes Thursday – Brownie’s Party at Patutahi, New Zealand, 1935.

This article is my first following a new genealogy blogging prompt – “Through Her Eyes Thursday”, started by another Diane who blogs at This Hoosier’s Heritage. I intend to write about the women in the Saggers One-Name Study at least once a month.

From the Poverty Bay Herald newspaper, Volume LXII, Issue 18768, 26 July 1935, page 2.

An article including news about Alice Saggers.


                BROWNIE’S PARTY


(Herald Correspondent.)

The prosperity that has attended the Girl Guide movement and its younger sister body, the Brownies, since their inception at Patutahi some years ago was amply demonstrated yesterday afternoon, when the latter organization celebrated its fifth birthday. The function, which took the form of a social gathering, attracted a full attendance of the local pack, there also being present representatives from the Manutuke and the Te Hapara troops.

                After an hour’s recreation in the form of organized games, it was with healthy appetites that the young people sat down to a sumptuous party tea provided by the local committee. Amid innumerable dainties, pride of place was given to a beautiful iced birthday cage [sic -cake] in the form of a log adorned with candles and toadstools, symbolical of the movement, the whole being the work of Miss Yolande Renner.

                A pretty ceremony was the lighting of the candles by Shirley Knight, the youngest Brownie present, and the cutting of the cake by Alice Saggers, the eldest. After tea Miss Meredith, district Tawny Owl, presented service badges to the following:–Mary McDermott, Peggy Waddell, Alice Saggers, Patricia Atkins, Betty Dickenson, and Dulcie Barber. The gathering concluded with the singing of “Taps” and the National Anthem.

                The following were amongst those present:–Miss Meredith, divisional Brown Owl, Mrs. A. J. Davis, captain, Patutahi Guides, Miss Price, captain, Manutuke Guides, Misses Buscke and F. Beauchamp, acting Tawny Owls, Manutuke Pack, Miss Ferguson, Te Hapara Brown Owl, Miss O’Halloran, acting Tawny Owl, 1st Gisborne Pack, Elsie Bryson, leader; Mesdames E. R. Renner, president, W. J. Atkins, J. Robb, F. Habgood, S. Wells, O. Williams, and A. Waddell. Apologies were received from Mrs. L. Balfour, divisional comsioner (sic), and the First Gisborne Brownie Pack. The girls included Alice Blakey, Rosalie Simpson, Noeline Miller, Phyllis McIntosh, Fay McKinley, Grace Cooper, and Margaret Hedron, Te Hapara; June Jones, Raina Waipara, Sophie Moeau, and Roa Beauchamp, Manutuke; Patricia, Anne and Alma Atkins, Dulcie Barber, Alice Saggers, Betty Dickenson, Peggy Waddell, and Shirley Knight.

My downloaded copy of this newspaper report from Papers Past, a project of The National Library of New Zealand / Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa,  is courtesy of the Gisborne Herald Company which allows non-commercial use of their images under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 license. The transcription is my own work.

Regions and Districts of New Zealand. Patutahi is on the north island, in the area of Gisborne.This map is by Korakys – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0. In 2019, Poverty Bay (so named by Captain James Cook in 1769) was officially gazetted as Tūranganui-a-Kiwa / Poverty Bay.