COINCIDENCE? Double Letter Surnames in Cricket, 1948

December 21, 2015

One of my guilty pleasures as a family history researcher is reading old newspapers looking for information about anyone with a SAGGERS or related surname. Several Saggers were cricketers and this is an Australian story I thought would interest other Surname Society researchers.

Harry Kneebone's World of Sport1

Fourteen-year-old Max Pettitt, of 9 Gaol Reserve, Adelaide, writes to point out "a very funny thing"
he noticed in looking through Sheffield Shield records. Five of the wicket-keepers have a double letter
in their names:- Tallon and Siggs (Q), Maddocks (V), Kessey (WA), Saggers NSW). [sic]

Max, whose eye for the double letter may have been sharpened by the plurality of letters in his own
surname, noticed the same feature in English players' names last year - Hammond, Gibb, Hardstaff,
Pollard, Hutton and Washbrook - and in several of the Australians who opposed them in Tests:-
Hassett, McCool, Miller, Dooland, Freer, Morris and Lindwall.

Of course, the sports journalist Harry (Henry William) Kneebone himself would have appreciated these double letter surnames as perhaps did his wife, Dorothy Joyce Hollow,2 and his parents, Harry (Henry) Kneebone and Henrietta Whitta.3


1. The Adelaide Chronicle, South Australia, Thursday, 26 February 1948, page 41. Accessed on Trove, Australian Newspapers On-line, the National Library of Australia:

2. Kneebone / Hollow marriage, Chronicle (Adelaide, SA) Saturday 24 March 1928, page 74:
and The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA) Monday 19 March 1928, page 9:

3. Henry Kneebone (1876–1933) entry, Biographical Dictionary of the Australian Senate, Online Edition: ;
Henry "Harry" Kneebone (17 March 1876 – 22 December 1933), entry, Wikipedia:

Some additional details available.

Submitted by M. Diane Rogers
Member 1069
SAGGERS surname family study:

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