Mary Jane Truelove
Biographical Account: Mary Jane Truelove (nee Watson) was born in Sheffield in 1844. She was the daughter of Thomas Watson, a file hardener, and Isabella. She spent the first half of her life as a general servant, living and working around the Ecclesall region. At some point between 1870 and 1890, she met Joseph Truelove, a cutler living in Greenhill. By 1891, they were living together. The records show that Mary was working as his general servant, still using the name Watson. The census record suggests that Joseph was at this time married, but there was no sign of his wife living with them. Interestingly, there are also no records of Joseph's marriage prior to 1891. The 1901 census records that Mary and Joseph are now living together as man and wife. However, there is still no record of any marriage between the two prior to this date. In fact, records show that the two were only married in 1909. It would appear that Joseph and Mary had been covering up their relationship for some years before finally tying the knot. Joseph died in 1923 and later that same year, she donated a number of birds from Connecticut in the USA. On that basis, it's most likely that the birds belonged to Joseph rather than Mary. It's unusual for a donation to consist entirely of birds from a single area, unless there is some connection to the area. While there are no digitised records of Joseph or Mary travelling to the USA, there is no census records for Joseph or Mary in 1881. It's possible that they were simply out of range , it's possible that they were both in the USA during this time.