We know of Elizabeth's existence from the 1871 census of England. She is listed as a member of the household of her nephew Michael Devine who lived at 7 Holland St., Kensington. According to the census return, Elizabeth, a 68-year-old widow, was born in Ireland and was a retired laundress. As we could not tell from the census whether Elizabeth was an aunt from Michael's mother's or father's side, a search was carried out on the FreeBMD website for marriages between an Elizabeth Devine and a Mr. Bellinger and an Elizabeth Jones (Michael's mother's surname was Jones) and a Mr. Bellinger. No Devine/Bellinger marriage record was located but I came across a marriage in the right time frame between an Elizabeth Jones and a Charles Bellinger in Marylebone, Middlesex in 1989. Because there is nothing on the marriage certificate, nor on any other documents located for Elizabeth or her family, that proves that this Elizabeth was indeed an aunt of Michael Devine, I have added cautions alongside their names in the family tree. Any assistance in establishing a definite connection, or even help in proving they are not connected at all, would be most welcome. If you can help, please contact Helen@HelensFamilyTrees.com.
An 1841 census return has been located for the household of Charles and Elizabeth. However, this states that Elizabeth was born in Middlesex, whereas our Elizabeth appears to have been born in Ireland (from 1871 census, as mentioned above). In case the place of birth was written incorrectly on the census form, here are the full census details:
Address: Little Chesterfield St., Marylebone (no house number provided)
Charles Bellenger, aged 25, occupation "Porter", born in England but not in Middlesex
Elizabeth Bellinger, aged 25, born in Middlesex
Agnes Bellenger, daughter, aged eight months, born in Middlesex
Interestingly 1861 census records were located for an Elizabeth Bellenger, living in Marylebone and born in Ireland. Full details are:
Address: 14 George St., Marylebone (a "lodging house")
Elizabeth Bellenger, aged 40, widow, occupation "charwoman", born in Ireland
Agnes Bellenger, daughter, aged 15, servant, born in Marylebone
Catherine Bellenger, daughter, aged 10, scholar, born in Paddington (near Marylebone)
This Elizabeth appears to be the same Elizabeth who married Charles Bellinger as both had daughters named Agnes born roughly around the same time. As to whether she is our Elizabeth who was the aunt of Michael Devine it is hard to say. The Elizabeth in the 1861 census was aged 40 whereas our Elizabeth would have been about 58 years of age at the time of the 1861 census. Note that although the 14 George St. had about 30 lodgers listed, Elizabeth herself had two lodgers listed as part of her household.
Our information on Elizabeth's death comes from the death certificate of an Elizabeth Bellinger who died aged 71 in the Marylebone Workhouse in August 1876. The certificate reveals that this Elizabeth, a charwoman, had died of "apoplexy". Unfortunately no other relevant information is provided so we cannot be sure that this certificate relates to Elizabeth Bellinger, aunt of Michael Devine.