I’m wondering if anyone can help me.  I’ve been tracing my family history for years now and one man, in particular, has left a puzzle behind.  Alpha Darley was born on 7th December 1853 to Mary Ann Darley (no father’s name given on the birth certificate), at Laneham in Nottinghamshire, England.  He married Ellen Charlotte Ward on 15th January 1877 in Kings Lynn, Norfolk, England.  I found Alpha, Ellen and their two little girls, living with Ellen’s father and the rest of his family at Swaffham in Norfolk.

Alpha doesn’t show up in any further census details, I have found no record of his death and Ellen never remarried.  Some years ago I gained access to Liverpool passenger lists and found an Alpha Darley listed as a passenger sailing to New York.  As there is no other Alpha Darley to be found anywhere in the records in Britain, I thought I’d see what I could find in America.  Sure enough I found the entry for a death in the first quarter of the 20th century, but didn’t print it out.  I do remember noting that it couldn’t be the Alpha Darley that I was looking for as the dates didn’t match.  But it could have been his son –  which suggested that he’d stayed in America and made a new life for himself.

I realise it’s a (very) long shot, but thought I’d put this info on my blog in case it reaches anyone who may have an Alpha Darley as an ancestor.  It’s such an unusual name that it’s worth a try anyway.

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