Finding out more about Ian Priestly-Mitchell and his past proved difficult enough that I decided to order a copy of the certificate of his marriage to Beatrice Morgan. Beatrice was living at Ballintyre Lodge when they married. I’m not sure if that’s the same as the Ballintyre Hall where her father was a gardener. Ian Priestly-Mitchell’s father was listed as Emmanuel Herman Mitchell, wool merchant. Knowing this information, it should have been very easy to find Ian’s birth records and census records from 1901 and 1911. However, it took quite a bit of searching. I was keeping in mind that he may have used the middle initial J. in 1924. The first thing I found was a 1911 census record for a head of household named simply Hermon (no last name) with his wife Adeline Mitchell, two children, and his mother-in-law, Mary Longfellow. The eldest child, simply named Priestley (no last name), was born in Shipley, Yorkshire in 1897. I knew that this was Ian. The family was residing in Bradford, which is where J. B. Priestley was born and raised. The 1901 census entry I found (before looking at the actual images of both censuses) was transcribed much better. This time all last names were included and Ian was listed as John Mitchell. I’m not sure why he changed his name from John Mitchell to John Priestly-Mitchell by 1924 and Ian Priestly-Mitchell by 1940, but it seems that Priestley may have originally been his middle name. One other thing I’d like to find is the record of Ian’s marriage to his first wife, Helen, who died a year before he married Beatrice.

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