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Mary Ann Wright married Charlton Fraser in New Zealand

On 6th February 1879 Charlton Fraser married Mary Ann Wright of Christchurch. Mary was the eldest daughter of Charles Wright, Hordon-on-the-Hill, Essex. There is very little detail about her in NZ documents ? she is just another invisible wife, usually referred to as Mrs C.S. Fraser. It is therefore hard to be absolutely certain of which are matching records of her in England.
Several records list her birth date as May 19 1853 in Christchurch. However, it seems reasonably clear that her parents were still in England well after this date, and thus this is likely to be a record of a different person.
The best evidence is that Mary Ann Wright was born in Essex in 1853, the daughter of Charles Wright and Sarah Wright nee Allard. Charles Wright married Sarah Allard in 1852 at Orsett, Essex, England.

Charles Wright was born 9 Nov 1830, Essex. Charles Wright is listed on the census in both 1841 and 1851 with his parents Thomas B Wright, born 1802, Hordon on Hill, Essex and Ann Wright, born c. 1801 Orsett, Essex. He is not with them in 1861.

Sarah Allard was born 11 Dec 1823, Essex. We can be less sure of her family, but likely parents are Henry and Sarah Allard shown in the 1841 census in Hordon On The Hill, aged 47 and 40, parents of several children, the oldest being 12. However in 1851 the family includes an unmarried daughter, Mary Ann Allard, aged 26. Sarah Allard cannot be directly connected to these parents, but it seems a reasonable inference, being a family in the same small town, with the same name as her mother. She would have been aged 18 at the 1841 census, so would be likely to be living elsewhere, probably working as a servant. Her sister Mary Ann, aged 16 was also living elsewhere, and a probable brother, Richard, was shown living separately in the same town.

There is a Charles Wright who died 1918 in Timaru aged 79, so born about 1830. The wedding notice suggests he was still in England at that time, but it is likely he came to NZ at some later stage.

There is no record of Mary Ann coming out to New Zealand. We do know she was in New Zealand in January 1871, when aged 17, from a photograph taken in Christchurch at that time.

Mary Ann, known as ?Minnie?, and Charlton Fraser had 10 children over a space of just 14 years. Their first child was born just one month after their wedding. There is another photograph of a young woman, probably Mary Ann a little older, taken in Florence, and noted on the back, ?for C.S. Fraser?. Newspaper records make it unlikely that Charlton Fraser has any gaps in his extensive business and sporting engagements to travel to Europe during the years just before their wedding, so it seems possible that Mary Ann did this on her own, perhaps to inform her family about he husband to be.

It would ne nice to confrm when Mary Ann Wright came to New Zealand.


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