Hi Norma Read your message and I may have an answer on why William changed his name. originally I thought that his mother may have been pregnant and Joseph Hastings married her despite the son not being his. However on further research I found that William was not this couples first child so that put paid to that theory. Now I know William was born in New Dear abt 1794. He married in New Dear 1813 and his trade was given as a farmer. This meant he was about 19 when he married. In 1817 there is a son Alexander born to a William Pyper farmer and Ann Scott. They were not married and the birth certificate says he is illegitemate and William is the reputed father.
Was William disowned by the father for this and then left the district in disgrace, changing his name to his mothers? Are these two William's one and the same?