My wife is a Searle descendent, and her great-great grandmother is also Sophia do Carmo Laidley: I have the following family history:
James Searle of London married Betsy Bigbie around 1800. One of their sons was John Searle, born probably in 1819. John became a Portuguese citizen and came to San Francisco by 1850, and became the first Portuguese consul-general in San Francisco at that time. Sophia do Carmo Laidley came to San Francisco on board the US Mail Steamer, "Panama" arriving on June 29, 1853, and marrying John Searle on board the ship that same day. I show Sophia's father as an English sea captain Henry Laidley, not William, but he married Sophina de Lares.
Your great grandfather must be the first child of John and Sophia, James, who was born in 1855 and married Matilda Bunner Cole. The information I have doesn't go far enough to find which of James and Matilda's four children was your grandparent (Catherine, Edith, Elizabeth, or James Russell Searle). My wife's great grandfather was their second son, John, born in 1856. John married Pearl Angier.
I don't know if the Laidley's opposed the marriage of Sophia and John. Our family says that Sophia's brother who was also named Henry, was a lifelong friend of John Searle, and Henry became the second Portuguese consul general in San Francisco in 1860.
Would be interested in exchanging family history with you.
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