The collection of Poor Law Vouchers for the Parish of Gnosall in Stafford Record Office contain several bills from Stafford Lunatic Asylum. Two have notes added to them concerning Ann Barnard.
(D951/5/81/56) Bill from Stafford Lunatic Asylum 26 Dec 1821
Gentm. It is very much the wish of the Physician to this Institution to give A Barnards a trial out & we recommend that she should in the first instance be taken care of in the Workhouse. She will be given up any time after next Saturday. J.G. [John Garrett]
The next has a more curt note. ( D951/5/81/57) Bill from Stafford Lunatic Asylum 26 March 1822
Gentm. I am directed to request that you will remove Ann Barnard for the sake of giving her trial at home as it appears to us she may now be removed on trial with safety and probable advantage – I am further directed to call your attention to the [heavy?] amount of the arrears & to require that you will order their payment. I am Gntm. Your Obed. ——— John Garratt
NB A quarter’s maintenance was £4 17s 6d. However this probably was not paid as a further Bill appears (D951/5/81/63) dated Nov 1822 from Stafford Lunatic Asylum for £81 13s 1d (16 Nov £71 13s 1d and 23 Nov £10.)
Not all records for Stafford Lunatic Asylum have survived but fortunately a book for 1821-22 has and it contains a page transcribed below but is difficult to read as it has poor writing and several abbreviations which are in red and any suggestions as to what the abbreviations are would be welcomed and an extract is shown below. Ann obviously has Post Natal Depression.
D4585/6 Stafford Lunatic Asylum 1821-22
Feb 12. Ann Barnard
This is a pauper from Gnosall, who became deranged about a fortnight since, having been delivered of an illegitimate child three weeks before. She seemed disposed at first to destroy the infant and on Tuesday attempted suicide by making a slight incision under the chin with a shoemakers wife knife (sic) Her mother was insane for 3 months after childbirth. Takes food irregularly, is thirsty and confined in her bowels. Is very violent and obliged to be put under restraint. H Cath all? Auror? 21 Has been freely [purged?] and is more calm, says her own [wickedness?] has [induced?] her present malady. Her disease now appears the Melancholic form Can—- an– Cith[????] 29 Is still obliged to be kept under restraint owing to a propensity to commit suicide. Cant? March 15th [– Digit gn x1d -ugend dos?] 12 Is generally improving [Cant Uain Cith?] 27 Cost.[Costive?]
1 May a little better. 22 June the disease has [now expanded?] the violent form. [Uanst Cilt al—-?]
30 Oct Continues in the subacute form of disease expresses extreme anxiety to return to her friends. 18 Nov Has employed herself more than usual lately but expresses the same anxiety to return home. Discharged on trial Dec 2 1820 re-admitted Dec 7th Continued quiet for about 2 days and then became violent, undressing herself. Said the room was in flames etc. 14 Ʀ [sign for prescription?] Digitales gn x1[orN?]d. The [S?]iving to be used. Discharged on Trial April 3rd 1822 Readmitted April 13th 1822. Has attempted suicide by throwing herself into a well.
July 9 Continues in much the same state, is constantly requesting to be allowed to return home. Oct 14 no alteration.
Jan 13 1823 Has become emaciated from her anxiety to go home a trial recommended. Feb 22 discharged on trial.
Bearing in mind that Ann Barnard was admitted on Feb 12 the Gnosall PR was searched and the Baptism found in St. Lawrence, Gnosall 10 Jan 1820 for Richard son of Ann Barnard single woman.
A further search for an unmarried Ann Barnard of child bearing age brings up a probable baptism on 29 Dec 1805 at Gnosall and she was the daughter of Susannah Barnard. (no Father.)
Ann Barnard does not appear on the 1841 Census, nor is there any record of a burial in either Stafford or Gnosall between 1823 and 1841 but there is a probable marriage for Ann Barnard (signed X) in St. Lawrence, Gnosall on 27 Dec 1827 to William Richards. Witnesses Charlotte Halls X and Joseph Badger. (Gnosall, St. Lawrence PR have the burial on 21 June 1839 of Joseph Badger age 42 which indicate that he was the Parish Clerk)
Ann & William Richards can be found in the 1841i and the 1851ii Census across the county border in Shropshire, but are back in Gnosall in 1861iii and1871. Having started as an Ag. Lab William then becomes a Blacksmith before acquiring a small farm of 19 acres by 1881.
William and Ann Richards have 7 children listed in the Census
Thomas born 1831 in Shropshire
John born 1834 in Shropshire
William born 1837 in Shropshire
Mary born 1839 in Shropshire
George born 1839 in Shropshire
John born 1842 in Shropshire
Mary Ann born 1844 in Shropshire
It was a pleasure to find that Ann survived to a ripe old age – hopefully without a re-occurance of Post Natal Depression. Her burial is seen in St. Mary’s Moreton. 6 July 1882 Ann Richards of Moreton. Age 77. Her husband lived a little longer and a burial is seen in St. Mary’s Moreton. 7 Jan 1887 William Richards of Moreton age 83. Moreton is part of Gnosall Parish.
In none of the census records has Ann’s son Richard Barnard been found. He did not die before 1830 as Staffordshire Apprentice Records have a record dated 15 May 1830 iv in which Richard Barnard Age 10 years, son of Ann of the parish of Gnosall is apprenticed to Joseph Bekcher a Farmer otp. Until 21 yrs [Probably Joseph Belcher]
After this there is no trace of Richard. He is not found on the 1841 census but no burial has been found. He could possibly have gone to America as one Richard Barnard is found travelling to America from Ireland. Or he could have gone into the Army as another is found in the Military Records and Greenwich Pensioners on Find My Past
i 1841 Census HO107/904 folio 22. Uckington, Atcham, Shropshire
ii1851 Census HO107/1987/folio 356 Burlington, Shiffnal, Shifnal, Shropshire,
iii1861 Census RG9/1904 folio 37 Lower Road, Gnosall, Newport, Staffordshire
Staffordshire Record Office
D951/5/81/56, Gnossall Overseers Voucher, Stafford Lunatic Asylum, 26 Dec 1821
D951/5/81/57, Gnossall Overseers Voucher, Stafford Lunatic Asylum, 26 March 1822
D951/5/81/63, Gnossall Overseers Voucher, Stafford Lunatic Asylum, Nov 1822
D4585/6, Stafford Lunatic Asylum, 1821-22