I think your family lore is a bit of a tall tale! It looks as though Mary Shackleton came from very humble beginings!
In 1861, she is a servant in the home of John Kershaw, a straw hat maker.
Mary Shackleton Servant 16 Nurse Maid (born) Bucks, Fenny Stratford.
RG9/1014 Folio 24 Page 4
Fenny Stratford, Buckinghamshire
John Shackleton Head 48 Labourer England
Edith Shackleton Wife 44 Fenny Stratford, Bucks
Francis Shackleton Son 15 Fenny Stratford, Bucks
Ann Shackleton Dau 11 Plater Fenny Stratford, Bucks
Elizabeth Shackleton Dau 7 Fenny Stratford, Bucks
Mary Shackleton Dau 5 Fenny Stratford, Bucks
Edith Shackleton Dau 4 Fenny Stratford, Bucks
HO107/1723 Folio 141 Page 28.
In 1861 John Shackleton says that he is born in Fenny Stratford. I found a christening for a John Shackleton on IGI 8 Feb 1803 Fenny Stratford. Parents William and Ann
You can confirm that John is Mary's father by getting her marriage certificate from GRO.
I think it is very unlikely that Mary is directly related to Ernest Shackleton. Ernest was born in Ireland where his family had lived for many years. His family was originally from Yorkshire and if there is a connection it would be a few generations back.
See biog Ernest Shackleton:
Hope this help
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