The Life and Times of Marguerite Longland Lukes

This is the fifth in the series of biographies, telling the lives of my eight great-grandparents, next up is Marguerite Longland Lukes.

Now with such an exotic name, you must be thinking that there must be a story behind the name and you are certainly right, there is.

Marguerite Longland Lukes

Marguerite Longland Lukes was born on 25th May 1883 at 26, Cross Street, Milton Gravesend, Kent. She was the only child born to Emma Sophia Lukes who was an unmarried Mother at the time, aged 24. Emma is listed as a Dressmaker on Marguerite’s Birth Certificate and the Father’s name is left blank.

Marguerite Lukes Birth

(Marguerite Longland Lukes Birth Certificate)

I have often wondered at the origins of the unusual middle name of Longland and although I cannot be certain, I am confident that there is a fair chance that Marguerite’s Fathers surname is likely to be Longland.

A quick search through Ancestry, at the relevant time, provides a few likely candidates or possible Father’s, but for the time being, or at least until a DNA match comes through, we will just have to leave the Father’s name as “Unknown”

Like many families in similar circumstances, Emma Sophia Lukes parents, Joseph Richard Lukes and Sophia Lukes tried to pass Marguerite off as their own child, instead of their Grand-daughter, on official documents. The stigma attached to having a child out of wedlock was still very much frowned upon and hidden from view, in the Victorian times that they were living in.

There is also another document that I was able to locate, that casts even more shadow over the state of mind of Marguerite’s Mother, Emma Sophia Lukes, not long after she gave birth. Within six months of Marguerite being born, Emma is listed as being in the Kent Lunatic Asylum, the admission date is 16th October 1883.

Kent Lunatic Asylum Record

(The National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Lunacy Patients Admission Registers; Class: MH 94; Piece: 27)

Kent Lunatic Asylum Hospital

County Asylums Kent

So the reasoning behind Joseph and Sophia being regarded as the parents of Marguerite might not just have been, “to keep up appearances”, within the local community, they might well have been fulfilling the day to day roles of Marguerite’s parents, because poor Emma was incapable of looking after her Daughter. The full story we can only speculate at.

The first census recored for Marguerite is the 1891 census and she list listed as the Daughter of her actual grandmother, Sophia Lukes. The family are living at 32, Augustine Road, Milton, Gravesend. By this time, Marguerite’s Father, Joseph Richard Lukes had sadly died.

1891 Census

Marguerite Lukes Census Return 1891

(Class: RG12; Piece: 646; Folio: 32; Page: 14)

Sadly I am unable to find any record for Marguerite Longland Lukes or her biological Mother, Emma Lukes, in the 1901 Census. I have tried for many years to try and locate them using many different methods. My suspicion is that they were possibly in the workhouse at this time, given that Emma was a single Mother and her own Father had already died at this time. Unless a kind reader can find her for me!

Marguerite married Frank Day on 15th August 1908 at The Parish Church, Milton, Gravesend, they were both living at 1, Augustine Road, Milton, Gravesend, Kent. Witnesses to the Marriage were Marguerite’s cousins, Joseph Richard Lukes and Alice Lukes.

Frank Day Marriage

(Marguerite Lukes Marriage Certificate)

1, Augustine Road, Gravesend, Kent

(1, Augustine Road, Gravesend)

After the Marriage, Marguerite and Frank set up their family home at 58, Salisbury Road, Grays, Essex and this was to be the family home for a number of years. Their first born child was Francis Norman Day was born on 23rd July 1909 and unusually, despite them living in the Parish of Grays at the time, Francis was actually baptised on 26th December 1909, at St. Andrews Church Hornchurch.

58, Salisbury Road, Grays

(58, Salisbury Road, Grays)

The family are still living at 58, Salisbury Road, Grays at the time of the 1911 Census and also living with Marguerite and Frank at the time are Marguerite’s Grandmother, Sophia Lukes and her Uncle John Lukes. By this time her own Mother, Emma Sophia Lukes had sadly passed away, in March 1906.

1911 Census

Marguerite Lukes Census Return 1911

(Class: RG14; Piece: 9967; Schedule Number: 215)

Over the next five years Marguerite and Frank Day had five more children, Eileen Marguerite Day born 29th December 1912 (My Dear old Nan), Freda Day who was born and sadly died in April 1914, Doris Louise Day, born 12th October 1915, Maureen Sylvia Day born in 1919 and Norman Frederick Day born 1922. Throughout this time the family home remained 58, Salisbury Road, Grays.

Sadly just three years later, on 21st June 1925, at the young age of just 42, Marguerite Longland Lukes died from Chronic Parenchymatous Nephritis, which is a disease usually associated with young people and can be brought on by Scarlet Fever. She died at The Bath Street Hospital, Gravesend, Kent and was Buried in Grays New Cemetary, Section 7 Plot 272.

Marguerite Longland Lukes nee Day Death Cert

(Marguerite Lukes/Day Death Certificate)


(Grays New Cemetery from my own collection)

Please see my regular blog for Family Tree Magazine Here

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