Charlotte was born on Bonfire Night, 5 November 1858, in Lewes, Sussex, England.
She was not raised by her parents, but by her mother’s sister, Elizabeth Hillman, who was married to a greengrocer named William Smith. By the time Charlotte was two years old, she was living with the Smiths, first in Lewes and later about 8 miles away in the seaside town of Brighton. When Charlotte was 17, and working as a domestic servant, her son Ernest Albert Stanbridge (my great-grandfather) was born.
No father is listed on the birth registration, and the baby was raised by a couple called James and Fanny Edwards. James was a baker in Brighton.
It seems that Charlotte moved away from Brighton after Ernest was born. We don’t yet know where she went, but about 20 years later she married a lawyer’s son named Frederick Partridge Smerdon and went to live in Sible Hedingham in Essex, England.
She and her husband ran a pub called the Bell Inn, and had at least two sons. Sadly, her husband died around 1908.
Charlotte lived as a widow for a long time, and died in January 1922 at the age of 62.
Charlotte’s father was John Stanbridge (1819-1891).
Next: Ernest: A Foster Child