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Judge rules birth of woman 100 years ago was legitimate

March 23, 1987

LONDON (AP) _ A woman born more than 100 years ago finally won legitimacy in the eyes of the law on Monday, 32 years after her death.

High Court Judge John Latey ruled that Edith Steggall, who was born in 1877 and died in 1955, had been made legitimate by the marriage of her parents three years after her birth.

The ruling will enable Mrs. Steggall’s 72-year-old daughter, Kathleen Cooledge, to share in an aunt’s estate.

Mrs. Cooledge, of Ipswich in eastern England, had battled for 10 years to have her mother declared legitimate.

″It’s the end of a very long road. I always believed my mother was legitimate and now the judge has said so,″ she told reporters after the judge’s ruling.

The judge said there was ″no suggestion from any source that Mrs. Cooledge was greedy or unscrupulous″ in trying to have her mother declared legitimate.

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