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Somerset & Dorset
Family History Society

Lucky Wedding Charm

Barbara Elsmore describes a wedding tradition of the Collings family

I am off to the wedding in Chicago of my nephew, Simon Collings, and his bride, all American girl Sarah, asked if there is a family tradition that could be observed and I racked my brains to think of one. Then I remembered my mother had me walking up the aisle with a silver three penny piece in my shoe. A quick look through a box of family treasures and I found a little box with five silver ‘thrupenny bits’ in it. I did not want to suggest that Sarah puts this token in her shoe, as I remember it being very uncomfortable, so she suggested weaving it in some way into her wedding bouquet. Next stop a local maker of wedding dresses where in exchange for a packet of biscuits (for coffee time) I ‘purchased’ a little off-cut of cream silk. With some lace, fine ribbons and tiny ‘pearls’ I soon fashioned a little bag. Next into a box with the bag and I thought I should include a photo of Simon’s Granny as this was where this family tradition started.  Of course I then got carried away and included the Collings line back to Simon’s great, great grandfather George born Halstock, Dorset in 1847.  Simon and Sarah will, hopefully, continue our branch of the Collings family and this family tradition will go on into the future.

The four generations of the COLLINGS family are from the top:  George COLLINGS b Halstock, Dorset m Fanny PAYNE b Monkton Deverill, Wilts  Arthur COLLINGS b Nether Compton, Dorset m Mabel BLANDFORD b West Parley, Dorset Ralph COLLINGS b Nether Compton m Elaine JACKSON b Ferry Hill, Co Durham  Roger COLLINGS b Hayes, Middx m Pamela PORRITT b Shorncliffe, Kent

The four generations of the COLLINGS family are from the top:
George COLLINGS b Halstock, Dorset m Fanny PAYNE b Monkton Deverill, Wilts
Arthur COLLINGS b Nether Compton, Dorset m Mabel BLANDFORD b West Parley, Dorset
Ralph COLLINGS b Nether Compton m Elaine JACKSON b Ferry Hill, Co Durham
Roger COLLINGS b Hayes, Middx m Pamela PORRITT b Shorncliffe, Kent

As an afterthought I checked up and found that this tradition actually stems from Victorian times and that it should be a silver sixpence placed in the bride’s left shoe. I am hoping that two lucky silver threepences will equate to one lucky sixpence! I wonder if anyone else has started or continued a family tradition that will go on into an unknown future?

Barbara Elsmore

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We welcome guest and member blog posts on any topic with a family history connection and invite you to send your contributions, which should include photo/photos, to the editor Barbara Elsmore