from this notice in Trove
DICKENS.—On the 16th inst., at Mansfield, Mary, the
beloved wife of Charles Dickens, aged thirty-four, leaving eight children to mourn her loss. Wolver- hampton papers please copy.
29 mar 1869
it would seem to me that,Mary either died in childbirth, and baby not reg until the next year,or he employed Ann Elizabeth Black to look after his eight children, and the inevitable happened and she became his common law wife, and had children to Charles.Remember too, that without a birth mother, he would not have an accurate year of birth, and as few women could write, an assumption of age, probably occured. penne