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The Fordham family

If you’ve been following this blog, you may know that there’s a bit of a mystery about who the father is of my grandmother, Beatrice Eleanor Chapman, born 1925 in Edinburgh, Scotland.

DNA evidence appears to point to a family called Cox from the London and Essex areas of England being related, with 3 confirmed matches that seem to point to a Walter Fordham Cox being my great great grandfather.

The question then arises, who is the Fordham?  And to which family does he belong?

There are a couple of possibilities here.  Given that it has been extremely difficult to track down Walter Fordham Cox beyond his birth, with no death being found for him in his first few years of life, and not appearing on the 1891, 1901 or 1911 English, Welsh or Scottish census, it is my opinion that he may well have been out of the country for some period of time.  The fact that I can vaguely remember my grandfather, the partner of Beatrice,  some years ago referring to some sort of connection to France, with no connection found so far on any other branches of the family tree, this would seem to be the most obvious branch where that connection could have been.

However, at some point there would have had to have been travel made to Edinburgh in the early 1920s by my unknown great grandfather, for my great grandmother, Frances Eleanor Chapman to fall pregnant in Edinburgh.

And so, with this in mind, I decided to look for any Fordhams in the Edinburgh area.

There aren’t that many of them who appear in the Edinburgh area at the right sort of time.

The first Fordham I found was a James Fordham who married in Edinburgh in 1897:

This James, a policeman from the London area seemingly, according to the Scottish marriage entry.  He appears on the 1891 census in Marylebone, London, England.

Also, James’s family are easily found in Swaffham Bulbeck, Cambridgeshire in 1861.

However, there is another possible Fordham, who Walter Fordham Cox could be related to, if there were any Fordham relations in Edinburgh, him being a Thomas Henry Fordham.

In 1922, a Thomas Henry Fordham married an Isabella McBeath in Edinburgh.  Thomas Henry’s father also being a Thomas Henry Fordham, his mother being Ellen Soundy.

I have also located a Thomas Herbert Fordham, who, in 1925 was of 110 Lauriston Place, Edinburgh, Scotland, according to the 1925 Scottish Valuation rolls when I was searching for Thomas Henry, and/or his parents, I could not see a Thomas Henry Fordham.

110 Lauriston Place wasn’t very far from Home Street, Edinburgh, where my great grandmother, Frances Eleanor Chapman, and her parents, Henry and Eleanor Isabella were living in 1925.

Could James, or Thomas provide a clue to discovering my unknown Fordham relatives?  Does any of this sound familiar to you at all?  Have you considered taking a DNA test for family history purposes?

 

 

 

 

 

Transcript of the will of Nicholas Wright 1845

Nicholas Wright, born in about 1765, was one of my five times great grandfathers, via my paternal grandad’s mother, Ann Wright, Wife of Frederick Pointon.  Although there is no substantial evidence that his parents were John Wright and Ann Barton, I believe it to be the case, both through discounting others, naming traditions and due to the fact that I have managed to confirm a DNA link back to John Wright and Ann Barton, via one of Nicholas’s supposed siblings.

Nicholas was a farmer who lived in North Meols, Lancashire, who married twice.  The first time to Anne Boond, the second to Alice Howard.  My ancestor is, I believe, Nicholas and Anne’s only child, John Wright born in about 1790/1.  Anne Boond died shortly after  giving birth to John,  and Nicholas went on to have another 7 children with his second wife, Alice;  Jenny, James, Ann, Peggy, Elizabeth, Alice and Mary.

All 8 children are named in Nicholas’s will, who died on the 11th January 1849, of Little London, and who was buried at St Cuthbert’s, North Meols on the 15th January.  Probate was granted on the 1st February 1849.

This is the last Will and Testament of me Nicholas Wright of Little London within North Meols in the county of Lancaster Farmer made this second day of June in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty five (being of sound and disposing mind memory and understanding)

First I order and direct the payment of my just debts funeral and Testamentary expences from and out of my personal Estate and Effects Then I give and devise my Messuage or cottage situate in Seabank road in South Port within North Mels aforesaid with the appurtenances thereto belonging which I hold by Lease under Peter Hesketh Fleetwood Esquire, unto my Sons and Daughters hereinafter particularly mentioned viz. John, James, Jane, the children of my daughter Ann late wife of James Rimmer Farmer, Margaret wife of Peter Rimmer, and Alice wife of James Ball their respective heirs executors administrators and assigns Share and Share alike as tenants in common and not as joint tenants.

And the issue of such of them as shall be then dead each set of children to take the share which their parent would have taken if then living

I do order and direct that my hereinafternamed executors shall as soon as convenient after my decease make sale of the whole of my Household Furniture Farming Stock Goods Cattle Chattels by Public Auction for the best price and most money that can be got for the same and with the money to arise from such sale my executors shall pay divide and apportion the same unto and amongst my Sons and Daughters hereinaftermentioned into eight equal shares and proportions (that is to say)

– One eighth share thereof unto my Son John his heirs and assigns – One eighth share thereof unto my Son James – One eighth share thereof unto my Daughter Jane – One eighth share thereof unto the children of my Daughter Ann late wife of James Rimmer Farmer aforesaid – One eighth share thereof unto my Daughter Margaret – One eighth share thereof unto my Daughter Alice – One eighth share thereof unto the children of my Daughter Betty late wife of Peter Rimmer of Little London – One eighth share thereof unto the child of my Daughter Mary late wife of Thomas Ball Blacksmith South Port

-It is my will and mind and I order and direct that in case any of my said Daughters shall be dead at the time of the division and apportionment as aforesaid Then the share of such Daughter so dying before that time to be paid and payable unto her children share and share alike

-I do hereby nominate and appoint my said Son James and my said Son in law – Peter Rimmer of Birkdale Executors of this my Will and I do hereby declare that they their Executors and administrators shall be chargeable only for such monies as they shall respectively actually receive by virtue of this my Will that they shall not be answerable for each other’s acts –

And I do declare that the receipts of my said executors shall be good and sufficient discharges and I direct them to retain out of my Effects all costs they may be put unto in the execution of this my Will:-  And revoking all other wills or testamentory dispositions made by me at any time or times heretofore:-  I do declare this present writing contains in one sheet of paper to be my last Will and Testament In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal the day and year above written

[Nicholas Wright signature] [seal]

Robert Ball

John Ball

James Coxhead

 

 

Causes of death

You may know that one fact listed on a person’s death certificate is the cause of death.   This fact is just another aspect of your ancestor that you can discover when doing your family history.

The family tree software I have has a “find” tool that allows me to search for particular words within any of the data entered.

I decided to do a few searches for specific causes of death which I remember seeing on the death certificates which I have so far, to see how many of my own direct ancestors died from things like “Old age” or “Bronchitis”, as examples.

When searching for “Old age” in the family tree, there were 2 results:

Alice Harrington (1752 – 1844) and Margaret Low/Law (1788 – 1875).

Doing a search for “Bronchitis” produced 14 results:

Emily Shaw (1842 – 1930) also “heart” see below, Isabella Wilson (1827 – 1913) also “heart” see below, John Wilson (father of Isabella) (1806 – 1891), Elizabeth Artless/Hartless (1797 – 1864), Henry Burrows (1787 – 1871), Mary Holmes (1852 – 1912) also “heart” see below, Elizabeth Roughley (wife of Henry Burrows)(1790 – 1855), John Walter Chapman (1837 – 1895) also “Asthma” see below, Theresa Traverse/Travis (1879 – 1963), Elizabeth Jones (1822 – 1878), Mary Hill (1849 – 1917) also “heart” see below, Mary Pusil (1792 – 1856), Elizabeth Tickle/Tittle (1791 – 1861) and Nicholas Wright (1830 – 1862).

There were 3 people who died from “Asthma

James Roden (1789 – 1846), Walker Harrison (1779 – 1841), John Walter Chapman (1837 – 1895) also “bronchitis” see above.

There are 15 deaths associated with problems related to the “heart” recorded in the family tree:

John Coxhead (1782 – 1861), maternal grandfather (1926 – 2005), Elizabeth Pimm/Pym (1839 – 1919), Ann Wright (1896 – 1984), Harriet Elizabeth Thomas (mother of maternal grandfather) (1892 – 1974), John Hough (1821 – 1892), George Stockton (1833 – 1891), John Coxhead (1855 – 1911), Emily Shaw (1842 – 1930) also “bronchitis” see above, Abraham Richards (1814 – 1873), Isabella Wilson (1827 – 1913) also “bronchitis” see above, Mary Holmes (1852 – 1912) also “bronchitis” see above, Elizabeth Francis (1859 – 1927), Mary Hill (1849 – 1917) also “bronchitis” see above, Ann Hough (daughter of John) (1850 – 1903)

Bronchitis and heart problems do seem to have caused a lot of the deaths over the span of the family tree that I have managed to see a cause of death for.  Indeed, on at least 4 occasions they have both been listed as the cause of death of ancestors.

 

 

 

 

Transcript of the will of Thomas French 1794

Thomas French (Abt. 1731 – 1798) is one of my 6th great grandfathers.

He was married to Mary “Finey”(Finney) the daughter, I believe of William Finney and Alice Bulkly, at All Saints, Runcorn, Cheshire, England on the 5th February 1747.

Thomas and Mary had at least 6 children born in Cheshire – Margaret, Joshua/Joseph (my line), Isaac, Mary, Shadrack and Sarah.

Thomas died in March 1798 and was buried at Aston by Sutton, Cheshire, England on the 26th March 1798.

This is the last Will and Testament of me Thomas French of Sutton in the Parish of Runcorn and County of Chester Labourer made the fourth Day of January in the year of our Lord one Thousand seven hundred and ninety four

First I desire and direct that all my just debts funeral Expenses and for the Probate of this my will be paid and discharged out of my Personal Estate by my Executrix herein after named Also I give and bequeath unto my Daughter Sarah Wife of Robert Shingler of Aston in the said County of Chester Carpenter my son Joshua my son Shadrach and my daughter Mary wife of George Dunbabin of Halton in the said County each the sum of one Shilling to be Paid to them respectively Immediately after my decease (and)

as to all the rest residue and remainder of my Personal Estate and Effects whatsoever and wheresoever the same shall happen to be at the time of my Death I give and Bequeath the same unto my dear wife Mary French Her Executors administrators & assigns for ever and lastly I do hereby nominate constitute and appoint my said wife Executrix Timothy Lamb Weaverham in the said County of Chester Husbandman Executor of this my will hoping and not Doubting that they will see the same carefully Performed and declare this to be my last will and Testament

In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal the Day and year above written.

[Thos. French signature] [Seal]

[Jno. Redish signature]

[Thos. Smith signature]

[John Earl signature]

 

Walter Fordham Cox (1890 – ?)

Following on from this post, I decided to investigate the Cox family a little more, and have corresponded with a likely 2nd to 3rd cousin.

It seems from all available evidence that the most likely ancestor of mine who could be linked to the wider Cox family was most likely an unknown son of Louisa Cox (daughter of William Cox and Louisa Moore), born in about 1874.

Louisa sadly died in 1890 aged 16, which meant that if this theory were to prove true, Louisa would have had to have had a child fairly shortly before her death.

I decided to do a search of the new online GRO birth index, which includes mother’s maiden name from 1837 to look for any possible Cox’s which could fall into that category, and found the following entry:

walter-fordham-cox-birth-1890
My great grandfather?

A Walter Fordham Cox was born to a single Louisa Cox on the 11th March 1890 at 27 Richmond Road, Walthamstow, Essex, England.

The Louisa on the birth certificate was a domestic servant.  It seems probable that the father’s surname was Fordham.

Unfortunately, at this point in time it cannot be confirmed that this Louisa is the same daughter of William and Louisa (nee Moore), and I have not been able to sight Walter Fordham or Cox in the English, Welsh or Scottish Census of 1891, 1901 or 1911.

However, neither have I found a likely death for this Walter Fordham Cox.

I believe that Walter could possibly be my great grandfather, or, I suspect if this is my direct descendant, that Walter, like his mum became a parent at a young age, and that child, possibly born between about 1904 to 1908 in Scotland, who is likely registered under his mum’s surname, whatever that is, is my great grandfather.

If a descendant of Walter is reading this post, and has considered doing a DNA test for family history, then that would be a great idea!

If anyone reading this thinks this all sounds familiar and can help to solve this mystery, then please do get in touch through the online form by clicking here.

Transcript of the will of John Middlehurst 1802

Windleshaw Chantry, Lancashire, England
Windleshaw Chantry, Lancashire, England

John Middlehurst (Abt. 1740 – 1803) is one of my 6 times great grandfathers, via his daughter, Elizabeth Middlehurst (Abt. 1770 – 1832)

Elizabeth was one of 8 children of John, the others being Thomas, William, Alice, Mary, Ann, John and Martha.  The family were Catholic.

John was a farmer who lived in the Windle area of what is now known as St. Helens, Lancashire, England.

He died on the 18th August 1803, and was buried at Windleshaw Chantry.

Unusually for wills of this time that i’ve seen so far, there are paragraphs, commas and full stops.

I John Middlehurst Senior of Windle in the County of Lancaster, Farmer, being of perfect Mind, and Memory, make this my last Will, and Testament.

I order, and direct, that all just Debts due from me, together with my Funeral Expenses, and the Probate of this, my last Will and Testament, shall be first discharged and paid out of whatever Estate and Effects I may happen to die possessed of.

The Rest, Residue, and Remainder of whatever Estate and Effects I may happen to die possessed of, I give and bequeath to my Wife Mary Middlehurst, to enjoy the same during the Term of her natural Life, provided she keep herself unmarried, but not otherwise.

And, at the Death of my said Wife, or if she marry again, then at the Time of such Marriage, I give and bequeath the Rest, Residue and Remainder of whatever Estate and Effects I may happen to die possessed of, to my Son Thomas Middlehurst, of Windle aforesaid, Delf Man, my Grandaughter Mary Middlehurst, of Windle aforesaid (who is the Daughter of my Son William Middlehurst of Manchester, in the said County, Blacksmith), my Daughter Mary Boardman, Wife of Thomas Boardman, of Windle aforesaid, Farmer, my DaughterElizabeth Molsdale, of Parr in the said County, Widow, my Daughter Anne Birchall, Wife of William Birchall, of Sutton in the said County, Farmer, my Son John Middlehurst, of Windle aforesaid, Delf Man, my Daughter Alice Middlehurst, of Windle aforesaid, and my Daughter Martha Middlehurst, of Windle aforesaid to be divided amongst them the said Thomas Middlehurst, Mary Middlehurst, Mary Boardman, Elizabeth Molsdale, Anne Birchall, John Middlehurst, Alice Middlehurst, and Martha Middlehurst, equally, Share and Share alike, but with this Distinction, whereas my said Son Thomas Middlehurst, my said Son William Middlehurst (Father of the within mentioned Mary Middlehurst) my said Daughter Elizabeth Molsdale, and my said Daughter Anne Birchall have severally had certain Sums of Money from me, I order and direct that the said Sums of Money shall be deemed as a Part of my Estate, and Effects, and whatevermy said Son Thomas Middlehurst, my said Daughter Elizabeth Molsdale, and my said Daughter Anne Birchall have had from me shall be stopped out of whatever their Shares may amount to, by such Division as aforesaid, and whatever my said Son William Middlehurst has had from me shall be stopped out of whatever the Share arising to my said Grandaughter Mary Middlehurst may amount to by such Division, as aforesaid.

If at my Decease, my said Son John Middlehurst wish to have my Watch, I order that he have it, provided he leave his own Watch in the Place thereof.

And I do hereby nominate, constitute, and appoint Hugh Ainscough, of Ormskirk, in the said County, Liquor Merchant, William Young, of Windle aforesaid, Farmer, and my said Wife Mary Middlehurst, to be the Executors, and Executrix of this my last Will, and Testament, into whose Hands I commit whatever Estate, and Effects I may happen to die possessed of, for the within mentioned Purposes, and no other, in any wise;  and I do hereby utterly revoke, disallow, and disannul all former Bequests, Wills, and Legacies by me heretofore in any wise left, or made, declaring, ratifying, and confirming this, and no other, to be my last Will, and Testament.  In Witness whereof, I have hereunto set my Hand, and Seal, this twenty first Day of June, in the Year of our Lord one Thousand, eight Hundred, and two.

[John Middlehurst signature] [Seal]

Signed by

[Joseph Rylands]

[Joseph Cook]

[William Glover]

 

Transcript of the will of William Glover 1818

William Glover (abt. 1746 – 1819) is one of my 6 times great grandfathers, via my great grandfather, William Bibby.

William Glover was a husbandman of Rainford, Lancashire, England, at the time of his marriage to Ruth Sephton, daughter of Hugh Sephton (1710 – 1793) at Rainford on the 2nd October 1773.

William and Ruth had 9 children – Hugh (my line), Thomas, Elizabeth, John, William, Ann, Ruth, Joseph and James.

He was buried at St Thomas the Martyr, Upholland, Lancashire, England on the 22nd August 1819.

This is the last Will and Testament of me William Glover of Balcony House within Upholland in the Parish of Wigan and County of Lancaster made and published the sixth day of March in the year of our Lord One Thousand eight Hundred and eighteen in manner following that is to say

I order and direct all my just debtes funeral Expenses and the charges of the probate of this my will to be paid by my Executrix and Executors hereinafter named out of my Personal Estate as hereinafter mentioned.

I give and devise unto my Sons Joseph Glover and John Glover and the Survivors and Survivor of them and the Executors and administrators of such Survivor All that my Messuage or Dwelling house and Tenement Outbuildings and the several Closes Closures or Parcels of Land or Ground thereunto belonging situate lying and being in Pimbo Lane within Upholland aforesaid and called or known by the name of Ambroses Estate part whereof is in the possession or occupation of my Son Thomas Glover as Tenant thereof and the remainder in my own occupation upon Trust to permit and suffer my Dear Wife Ruth to receive and take the yearly Rents Issues and Profits thereof and of every part thereof to and for her own use and benefit for and during the Term of her natural life or until her intermarriage And from and after the decease or intermarriage of my said wife Ruth which shall first happen.

I give and devise all that the said Messuage or Dwellinghouse and Tenement Outbuildings and Closes Closures or Parcels of Land or Ground Hereditaments and Premises unto my said Sons Joseph Glover John Glover my Daughter Ruth Fairclough and my Son James Glover To hold to them their respective Heirs and assigns for ever as Tenants in Common and not as joint Tenants Subject nevertheless and I do hereby charge and make chargeable the same Estate called Ambroses with the payment of the Yearly Rent Charge or Sum of Five Pounds to my Son Hugh Glover and his assigns for and during the Term of his natural life the first payment thereof to become due and payable to my said Son Hugh Glover at the Expiration of Twelve Months after my said wife’s death or intermarriage

And in default of payment of the said Rent Charge or Sum of five Pounds to my said Son Hugh Glover I do hereby order and direct that he shall have liberty to enter upon the said Premises and distrain for the same as if it were Rent due upon Lease.

I give and devise all those my Cottages or Dwellinghouses with the appurtenances situate lying and being in Upholland aforesaid and called or known by the name of the Tontine Houses unto my Son William Glover his Heirs and assigns for ever.

I order and direct my Executors hereinafter named to permit and suffer my said wife Ruth to take such part of my Household Goods Beds Bedding and Furniture Plate Linen and China as she shall think necessary which I hereby direct shall be enjoyed by my said wife until the time of her decease or her intermarriage which shall first happen they my said Executors taking an Inventory of the same and as to the residue and remainder of my Household Goods and Furniture Implements of Household Beds Bedding Plate Linen China live and dead stock I order and direct my Executrix and Executors hereinafter named to sell and dispose of the same within Twelve Months after my decease

And I further order and direct my Executrix and Executors hereinafter named to collect get in and receive all my ready Money Money out at Interest as well Mortgage as otherwise and all other my Outstanding Debts of what nature or kind soever and by and with the Money arising therefrom and from the Sale of my Household Goods and Furniture and other things as aforesaid in the first place to pay all my just debts funeral Expenses and the charges of the Probate of this my Will and the Surplus thereof pay and divide the same unto and equally among my said Sons James Joseph and John and my Daughter Ruth Fairclough equally share and share alike

nevertheless it is my will and mind that in case my said Three Sons and Daughter can agree to occupy the Farm which I now carry on they may do so and let my Stock and other Things remain thereon for their joint benefit and from and after the decease or intermarriage of my said wife I order and direct my Executors hereinafter named to sell and dispose of all the Household Goods Beds Bedding Plate Linen and China so to be enjoyed by her my said wife as aforesaid and the Money arising therefrom to pay and divide the same unto and among my said three Sons James Joseph and John and my said Daughter Ruth equally share and share alike

Nevertheless I do herebyy declare that I have already advanced to my said Son James One Hundred and thirty Pounds and to my Daughter Ruth Fairclough One Hundred Pounds which I do hereby direct shall stand as debts owing by them and the said Sums of One Hundred and thirty Pounds and One Hundred Pounds shall go in advancement of my Personal Estate.

I give and bequeath all the rest residue and remainder of my Personal Estate and Effects not hereinbefore disposed of unto my said four children James John Joseph and Ruth equally share and share alike And it is my will and mind thatin case any of my said Children shall have departed this life before they shall received their shares of the same leaving lawful Issue such Issue shall be entitled unto and shall receive his or her deceased Father or Mothers share

And I do herebydeeclare that the Receipt or Receipts of my Executrix and Executors hereinafter named shall be good and sufficient discharges for all payments to be made to them by virue of this my Will and I do hereby declare that the reason that I have not made any Devise or Bequest to my Son Thomas Glover and my Daughter Elizabeth Tasker is because I have already advanced to them their shares in full of my Property

And lastly hereby Revoking all former and other Will or Wills by me at any time heretofore made I publish and declare this to be my last Will and Testament and do nominate constitute and appoint my said Wife Ruth and my said Sons Joseph Glover and John Glover Exectrix and Executors thereof

Nevertheless it is my will and mind and I do hereby expressly declare that they my said Executrix and Executors or any of them or any of their Heirs Executors or Administrators shall not be charged or chargeable with or answerable or accountable for more money than they shall severally actually receive or which shall come to her his or their respective hands by virtue of this my will nor with or for any loss which shall happen so as the same shall happen without her his or their wilful neglect or default nor the one of them for the other or others of them but only each of them for her his and their own Acts Deeds Receipts neglects default and disbursments only

And I further declare that they my said Executrix and Executors shall be allowed to retain and reimburse themselves and himself all reasonable Costs Charges and Expenses for their trouble in and about the Execution of this my Will

In Witness whereof I the said William Glover the Testator have to the three first sheets of this my last will contained in four sheets of paper set my hand and to this being the fourth and last sheet thereof my hand and seal the day and year first above wriiten

[William Glover Signature] [Seal]

[Thomas Hall signature] Clerk to Mr Bretherton Wigan

[John Kenyon signature] of Upholland

[Lewis Foster signature] of Upholland

 

A step closer to my great grandfather?

For some time now, an enduring mystery has been who is the father of my grandmother, Beatrice Eleanor Chapman?

I have been going through DNA matches for a while trying to sort them into those that also match with 1st cousins and a half 1st cousin of my mum and dad, so I can identify a grandparent related to each match that I can see in common with any particular cousin who has tested.

Recently, my mum also tested with Family Tree DNA, and her results were interesting to look at, as one of my top matches is also one of mum’s top matches on FTDNA.

ftdna-screenshot-mum-top-matches
Some of mum’s top matches on Family Tree DNA

The 2nd DNA match down in the image above is the match of interest to my mum.  In the image below, the 1st DNA match is the same match on my match list:

ftdna-screenshot-my-top-matches

I have deliberately removed any names from the screenshots above.

Having been in contact with this DNA match some time ago I can say that this person’s ancestors in the relevant timescale were from south east England, from London and the surrounding counties.

I decided to try playing around with an experimental family tree, to see if I added different people’s names during the right timeframe in different positions, based on the amounts of shared DNA in common and making an educated guess based on those shared amounts in relation to DNA matches I have managed to confirm, whether I would get any shared ancestor hints on the Ancestry DNA test, which I upoaded to FTDNA some time ago.

Sure enough, I had to get a shared ancestor hint eventually from this process, and it came by placing this family in the tree on the branch of my unknown great grandfather!  And it links in fairly nicely with my estimate, although possibly a generation out.

cox-shared-ancestor-hint

Although this isn’t the same DNA match as on the FTDNA website, they are related, through a different branch of the Cox family.

I mentioned briefly above that I am possibly a generation out.  If you’ve read my “Beatrice’s Story” post, you may know that my grandmother, Beatrice Eleanor Chapman was born in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1925.

I decided to try looking for a Cox family in the Edinburgh area on the Scottish 1911 census who were born in England, I found this family living in Quality Street, Cramond, on the outskirts of Edinburgh in 1911:

george-cox-and-family-1911-cramond-census

As you can see from the above image, George Cox, aged 44 was born in England.  This would mean that he was born in about 1867.

Going back to the shared ancestor hint image further above, you’ll notice the shared ancestors are William Cox and Louisa Moore, they did have a son called George, only he was born much later than 1867.

William Cox, however, also had a brother called George Cox born at about the right time to be the same George as shown in the 1911 census. William and George being children of Robert Cox and Amelia Morgan.

From the birth registration of one of George and Mary E’s children, the certificate states that George and Mary Ellen (nee Tuttle) were married in London, England in the mid 1890s, this would place them in the right area to fit in with the other Cox family members at the right time.

And so, it is possible that one of George and Mary Ellen’s son’s is my great grandfather.  George W, born about 1896, Tom R. C. born about 1901, or Jack A, born in about 1905.  The same year Frances Eleanor Chapman was born.

Or I could be completely wrong!

UPDATE 22/11/16.  The George Cox in the census image above appears to have been born in Lincolnshire, not London. 

Mary Walker (1786 – 1846)

Courtesy of Cumbria Archives, another ancestor puzzle has been cleared up this past week.  But there is still more to find out, as is usually the case.

Mary Walker was my 5th great grandmother.  I have yet to discover her birth or baptism, but I believe I now at least know a little more about her life.

On the 14th September 1812, Mary Walker and William Benson married at Millom, Cumberland, England.  The witnesses were Mary Dobson, Ellenor Walker and John Newton.

My 4th great grandmother, Eleanor Benson, was baptised to William and Mary at Millom on the 5th November 1812.

I found an announcement in the 15th December 1849 edition of the Kendal Mercury of Eleanor’s marriage to my 4th great grandfather, Robert Holme(s), but interestingly her uncle, George Benson, rather than her dad’s name was mentioned in the announcement, leading me to believe that her dad, William Benson, at least must have died, possibly also her mum, Mary Walker by the December of 1849.

It had been difficult trying to find a William and/or Mary Benson in any census, after all, quite some time had passed between Eleanor’s birth in 1812 and the first available census in 1841 and there were no obvious possible candidates in the 1851 census.  William and/or Mary could have easily moved to another area by that time.

I decided to try and look for a marriage of a Mary Benson, and found one.  A Mary Benson married a John Swainson at Whicham, Cumberland on the 13th May 1826, but could this possibly be my Mary Walker?

I contacted Cumbria Archives to ask about this marriage, who were only too happy to help.  They found the details from the marriage, which I greatly appreciate:

JOHN SWAINSON of Dalton-in-Furness, and MARY BENSON, widow, married by banns in the presence of William Walker, Hannah Robinson and William Robinson.

I found John and Mary Swainson in the 1841 census at Broughton West, Lancashire.  John, aged 48, an agricultural labourer, not born in Lancashire, and Mary, aged 55, also not born in Lancashire.

John Swainson appears as a widower in the 1851 census, and I found a death registered in the Ulverstone registration district in 1846, so all available evidence appears to support my theory that both William Benson and Mary Walker had died before their daughter Eleanor’s marriage at Whicham in 1849.

It seems Mary Walker was born in about 1786, most likely somewhere in Cumberland, possibly in the Millom or Whicham areas.  The Ellenor Walker who was a witness to Mary’s first marriage, and the William Walker who was a witness to the 2nd marriage were possibly siblings, or cousins.  Do you know anything about these Walkers?  Please do contact me if you’d like to share any information.

Ann Hough (1850 – 1903)

Until a couple of days ago, I was a little bit puzzled as to what happened to my 3rd great grandmother, Ann Hough, after her appearance with her husband, George Pointon, and family, in the 1881 census “Near Royal Oak”, Knutton, Staffordshire, England.

George had appeared in the 1891 census as married, at Vale Pleasant, Knutton, Staffordshire, an ironstone miner.

I found George Pointon’s death, caused by injuries due to an accident at the Harrison and Woodburn Pit, Leycett in 1894, however it puzzled me why I could not find any mention of Ann.

I had been searching for a possible death, with no luck, but then turned my attention to a possible marriage, and found it!

Ann Pointon, the daughter of John Hough (and Elizabeth Jones), a widow, married John Lloyd, a batchelor and a miner, father Edward, at Holy Trinity, Sneyd, Staffordshire on the 26th June 1894.

I found John and Ann Lloyd on the 1901 census at Tunstall, Staffordshire, with a son, John B(luch) Lloyd, born in about 1888.  John Bluch Lloyd was born in 1887, and the mother’s maiden name was Hough.

The puzzle of where Ann was in 1891 had been cleared up, she was listed as Ann Lloyd in that year’s census, living with her future husband and son.

I also found the death registered in 1903 of Ann Lloyd.

So, not only had I discovered what happened to Ann, I had also found a new 3rd great uncle, I had never heard about before.

Moral of the story, if you think someone might have died, try checking for a marriage first.  I certainly will.