A surprising find

I’ve been researching my family history for the past 8 years or so, and I’m pretty convinced that all my ancestors prior to my mother’s generation remained within the UK. So it was with zero expectation that I typed my maiden name “Towell” into ancestorsonboard.com to search all years of the outbound passenger lists currently available.

I was rather taken aback to see one Harriet S Towell, aged 61, listed in the search results for 1890. I know from memory I have a Harriet Sarah Towell on my tree and it doesn’t strike me as a particularly common name. But what would she be doing travelling to New York in 1890?

On viewing the image, I can now see she was travelling with Thomas Towell, a carpenter aged 33. That strikes even more of a chord, as I know that my great-grandfather was Thomas Towell and he was a pianoforte manufacturer/ cabinet maker. Just a coincidence? I’ll need to check my tree at home to see how my Thomas and Harriet were related. Watch this space!

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