Townley’s Chemist and Druggist, Brampton

L Townley Druggist PR60/21/13/5/58
L Townley Druggist PR60/21/13/5/58

Brampton was provided with a medicine dispensing service by its physicians and by the town chemist, Lancelot Townley (c.1750-1824). His daughter Elizabeth (1791- 1865) followed him into the business as possibly did another daughter, Hannah (1799-1837). Elizabeth’s and Hannah’s siblings were William (b.1781), Jane (1783-1855) Michael (1784-1808), George (b.1787), Mary (1789-1790), George (b.1794), and Sarah (b.1798).[1] The involvement of Mary Holmes (c.1754-1819) wife of Lancelot or their other children who survived into adulthood in the business near Front Street, is not known.

Peter Barfoot and John Wilkes  1797 directory lists a Mr Townley as a Druggist. [2] In Jollies’ 1811 directory L Townley Druggist is named as a trader in Brampton. [3]. It is assumed this is Lancelot Townley. His bill to Brampton the overseers from 3 March 1817 to 18 March 1818 is for a Physic 3d, and three lots of medicines priced at 10d, 9d and 6d respectively. The total amounting to £0. 2s. 4d.[4]

Elizabeth Townley died in 1819 and Lancelot in 1824. [5] Looking at the trade directories it appears that their daughter Elizabeth has taken on the role of chemist on her own, but in his will Lancelot Townley left everything equally to his two daughters Elizabeth and Hannah. The will stipulates: ‘To my two daughters Elizabeth and Hannah my household furniture, stock in trade together with all my money and securities for money’. [6] It is conceivable that Hannah entered the family business and that they worked together perhaps following their father’s recipes. Preparation of qualified doctors’ prescriptions may have been undertaken, although they may have had no formal qualifications themselves. Perhaps they learned their trade from their father. Until the 1868 Pharmacy Act training for chemists had not been standardized. They may even have been seen as a competitor by the doctors.

There are no newspaper notices as to what they may have been selling or whether they sold non-pharmaceutical goods. Their father’s bill is for the overseers and it is the only one found so far. This may be an indication that their pool of customers came the less well off, as paying doctors’ fees was not an option for them. Equally, many chemists and druggists served a predominantly middle-class clientele. By 1829 Elizabeth had competition from Henry Dobson and others who traded as chemist’s and also selling tea, oils and colours.[7]

Hannah Townley died in 1837, however Elizabeth Townley can be found on the 1841 Census at Brampton Lane still trading as a Chemist. She is absent from subsequent trade directories. Elizabeth’s sister, married to clockmaker William Richardson, died in 1855.[8] Subsequent census returns reveal that Elizabeth provided herself with an income by offering lodgings, described asa lodging house keeper on the 1861 Census. This was a common practice for many women. Elizabeth Townley’s niece Mary Townley died in 1864.[9] She left her assets to her half-sister Elizabeth Holmes Latimer of Townley Place and Stamford House, her stepfather William Richardson and aunt Elizabeth Townley. It reveals she owned property herself at the West End of Brampton which provided her with an income. Along with her half-sister Elizabeth Holmes Richardson (Latimer) the other witness to her will was John Pears, chemist.

Elizabeth Townley died a year later in 1865, but appears to have left no will.[10]

A modest headstone commemorates Hannah, Elizabeth and their niece Mary Townley at Brampton Old Churchyard adjacent to a larger columned headstone to Mary’s half sister Elizabeth Holmes Richardson (1823-1888) and her husband William Latimer (1831-1865), solicitor.

Sources
[1] ancestry.co.uk,  accessed 11 April 2019
[2]Peter Barfoot and John Wilkes Universal British Directory, Vol 5 (London: c.1797)
[3] F. Jollie, Cumberland Guide and Directory (1811)
[4] Cumbria Archives, PR60/21/13/5/58, Brampton Overseers’ Voucher, March 1817 to March 1818
[5] Carlisle Journal, 6 March 1819
[6] Cumbria Archives, PROB/1814/W399, Will of Lancelot Townley 1824
[7] W. Parson and W. White Directory and Gazetteer Cumberland and Westmorland (1829)
[8] Cumbria Archives, Brampton Monumental Inscriptions (Cumbria Family History Society)
[9] Cumbria Archives, PROB/1864/WCOD293, Will of Mary Townley 1864
[10]Carlisle Journal, 17 March 1865

Hannah, Elizabeth and niece Mary Townley Headstone (foreground) Brampton Old Churchyard photo taken M Dean 7 April2019
Hannah, Elizabeth and Mary Townley (niece) Headstone in the foreground Brampton Old Churchyard Taken M. Dean 7 April 2019

George Graham. Surgeon, Brampton. 1783-1847

George Graham was a surgeon in Brampton. During his working life he encountered both the poor and the non-poor. His name appears on voucher PR60/21/13/5 which relates predominantly to child deliveries with fees ranging from 15s to £1.5s. As one item on the bill relates to the Workhouse it is assumed that the mothers were poor.[1] The mothers are referred to by the prefix ‘Miss’ and a surname. One is simply referred to as ‘a pauper in Brampton’. Excepting a Miss Robb or Ross and the pauper however, it is possible to determine who some of those concerned are.



Cumbria Archives Service, PR60/21/13/5, Brampton Overseers’ Voucher, Dr Graham, 22 Mar. 1816


Four have been identified: Robert, illegitimate son of Margaret Dobson 11 March 1814, Forrest Head. Ann, illegitimate daughter of Ann Atkinson, spinster, 5 May 1815, Brampton; George, illegitimate son of Sarah Taylor, weaver, 5 November 1815 Brampton; and Margaret, illegitimate daughter of Margaret Wallace, 12 January 1816, Brampton.

From parish registers, four have been identified: Robert, illegitimate son of Margaret Dobson, 11 March 1814, Forrest Head; Ann, illegitimate daughter of Ann Atkinson, spinster, 5 May 1815, Brampton; George, illegitimate son of Sarah Taylor, weaver, 5 November 1815, Brampton; and Margaret, illegitimate daughter of Margaret Wallace, 12 January 1816, Brampton.[2]

Other vouchers bearing Dr Graham’s name are for medication but it is not clear who they are for. Medicines include, Cream Tartar 4d, Cordial Mixture 3s, Diuretic Mixture 3s, Bronchial Mixture 3s, Opening Powder 6d, and Tonic Powders 5s. Although the precise ingredients are not stipulated, Dr T J Graham’s Modern Domestic Medicine (1837) may give some idea as to the ingredients used.[3]

Dr Graham was born at Bankhead, Canonbie, Dumfriesshire on 15 October 1783 in the Esk Basin. This was once known as the ‘Debatable Land’ between England and Scotland where the Graham, Armstrong, Bell and Elliot families administered the law. George Graham had five siblings: three sisters Sarah (1777-1862), Janet (1778-1841) Margaret or Peggy (1786-1836), and brothers William (1781- 1849) and John (1789- 1838). Sarah married farmer Richard Johnstone (1773-1873) and Janet also married a farmer, John Hope (1779 -1866). [4] George’s parents Peter Graham (1740-1825) and Ann Nichol (1747-1831) left the farm at Bankhead around 1790 and moved the short distance to Cubbyhill near Longtown.[5] George became a Surgeon, John became a silk mercer in London, and William took over the farm.


Dr Graham gained his Surgical Diploma in Edinburgh and began practice initially in Longtown Cumberland aged 23. His name is amongst those balloted for the Militia but he did not serve, a substitute took his place[6]


Working Life
Dr Graham began practice in Brampton in 1811. His name can be found in the 1829 trade directory at Market Place. [7] He was one of three surgeons in Brampton; the others being T. Gilbanks, H. Dobson and W. Fleming. In 1834 he was joined by an assistant William Armstrong (1812-1886), also born in Canonbie. Dr Graham purchased a property in Market Place in the centre of Brampton for £400 in 1836 and began a Doctors’ Partnership with Dr Armstrong in 1839. [8] They can be both found on the 1841 Census at Front Street, Brampton. They were joined in the practice by John Graham(1820-1893) George Graham’s nephew, one of his brother William’s 12 children. John Graham continued in the practice till 1861 when he sold up to leave for London along with his wife.[9] William Armstrong continued to be involved in Brampton affairs, becoming Justice of the Peace for Cumberland and Chairman of the Brampton Poor Relief Fund in 1878. He died at Garden Terrace, Brampton, 5 August 1886.[10]

Brampton Stocks, 2019

Some of Dr Graham’s work involved the administration of justice. Local newspapers give an insight into what is hoped were the less common events in his working life. In 1836 he ordered the release of a Jwhonnie Steeson (sic) from his punishment in the stocks Market Place, Brampton. The event was recalled by local poet Peter Burn (1831- 1902).[11] In 1841 at the trial of Jane Hogg and her mother Mary Hogg for the murder of Jane’s newborn child, Dr Graham gave evidence. Jane and Mary Hogg were both found guilty but the death sentence was commuted. The Jury asked for leniency for Jane. Lord Chief Justice Denman said of her mother Mary if I were perfectly convinced that she had destroyed the child for the purpose of saving the expense of keeping it … I should have no choice but to leave her to the executioner’. [12] He felt that all the facts were not known. Jane was given a life sentence, Mary was transported on 2 May 1842 to Van Diemen’s Land never to return.[13]

All three doctors were together two years before Dr George Graham’s death at the celebration of the Earl of Carlisle’s birthday at the Howard Arms, Brampton.[14]

octor Graham’s death is reported in the Carlisle Patriot, 2 July 1847:At Brampton on the 26th ult George Graham Esq surgeon aged 63 much respected by a wide circle of acquaintances‘. [15] He was buried at Lanercost, two miles from Brampton.[16]


This is a work in progress and subject to change with new research


Sources
[1] Cumbria Archives, PR60/21/13/5, Brampton Overseers’ Vouchers, 22 March 1816
[2] Cumbria Archives, PR60/7, Brampton, St Martin’s Parish. Register of Baptisms, 1813-1835
[3] Thomas J. Graham, Modern Domestic Medicine. A popular treatise illustrating the symptoms, causes and distinction and correct treatment of the diseases incident to the human frame; embracing the modern improvement in medicine (7th edn., 1837), https;// books.google.co.uk, accessed 14 Mar. 2019.
[4] www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk, accessed 14 Mar. 2019.
[5] Dumfries and Galloway Family History Society, Canonbie Parish Church Monumental Inscriptions (2006).
6] Cumbria Archives, Q/MIL. Militia Liable Books, 1690-1831, (1806-1812)
[7] W. Parson and W. White. Directory and Gazetteer Cumberland and Westmorland (1829).
[8] Cumbria Archives, DCART/B/2/19/2, Deeds and Probates re: Clarke’s property in Market Street[Place] purchased by George Graham Surgeon of Brampton (B1); Carlisle Patriot, 10 November 1838; Carlisle Journal, 12 April 1843; Carlisle Patriot, 13 August 1856
[9] Carlisle Journal, 11 January 1861
[10] Carlisle Journal, 10 August 1886
[11] Carlisle Journal, 20 January 1893
[12] Carlisle Journal, 7 August 1841
[13] www. convictrecords.com.au, accessed 14 Mar. 2019.
[14] Carlisle Journal 20, September 1845
[15] Carlisle Patriot, 2 July 1847
[16] Cumbria Archives, Carlisle, PR 121/9, Lanercost, St Mary Magdalene Parish Burial Register, 1813-1870

Isaac Dodd (1744-1818), Vestry Clerk, Skelton

Voucher PR 10/V/10/6 March 6 1785 payment to Rebecca Dixon

The poor of Skelton received relief from funds made available from charging ratepayers of the Parish. Payments were made by Isaac Dodd, referred to as Vestry Clerk but occasionally Parish Clerk. A few of those mentioned in the vouchers as receiving poor relief are Philip Bowman, Rebecca Dixon, Sarah Moor and Jane Sewell for child maintenance; and Thomas Gill and Edward Tinkler for house rent. William Hogg and Joseph Nelson received payments for providing board for the poor, and John Hutton for help when he was ill.

Voucher PR10/V/14/1 1 September 1788 Philip Bowman
Voucher PR10/V/14/1 1 September 1788 Philip Bowman

Dodd’s name appears on numerous vouchers found between 1783 and 1786. He also received letters from the poor asking for help. One such letter in July 1790 came from William Turner of Whitehaven asking for 20-30 shillings so his daughter can start up a business in a small shop. He says that he is old and in ill health and a burden to her. His daughter was already struggling to maintain herself and her family. William said that he had asked the Parish Officer of Whitehaven for help but they contended that he did not belong to them. It is assumed they don’t think he has a ‘settlement’ in the parish. Therefore, he is writing to Isaac Dodd as he must believe his place of settlement is with Skelton. Notes at the bottom of the letter refer to a Barbara Nelson and that notice is to be taken of Frances Graham, presumably to help determine his case.

Parish Clerk
Isaac was appointed to the post of Parish Clerk by the then Rector, Rev’d Samuel Starkey  (1747-1804) in January 1786 and continued [in the role] after the appointment of Rev’d Tovey Jolliffe (1750-1830) in 1791. In 1810 the Overseers of the Poor and Churchwardens Account Book records that he was paid £1 1s 0d a year. He also received payments for supplying communion wine £2 15s 0d and washing the church linen £0 5s 0d in 1805. His name appears in the account book on other occasions, recording the payments to parish poor and when attending the quarter sessions. Isaac’s name is also recorded frequently as a witness at weddings in the parish. It is not known if he received any payment for doing so. On the birth of his son in 1772 the parish register records Dodd’s occupation as a tailor. It was common for holders of parish officers to have a main occupation.

Family
Issac appears to have been born in Croglin, a small village about 14 miles from Skelton  on the 13 August 1744. His siblings were Joseph (1739), John (1742) Thomas (1747-1747) Mary (1749), William (1752) and Elizabeth (1756). He married Rachel Allonby on 7 July 1768. On 28 September 1768 their daughter Ann was baptised but  the same day Rachel’s death is recorded in the register. Ann survived only a few months after the death of short her mother, dying on the 14 January 1769. Isaac then married  Mary [unknown surname] (c.1748-1797), although the record of the marriage cannot be found in Skelton parish. They had 4 children John (1771), Joseph (1772-1774), Mary (1776) and her twin Betty (1776-1801). Dodd’s second wife Mary died on 19 April 1797 aged 49. Five years later, in 1802 Isaac, now 56, married for the final time Esther Hutton aged 48.

In 1817 Isaac Dodd resigned from his role as Parish Clerk. His signature in the Account Book showing a deterioration in quality from earlier entries. Shortly afterwards he made a short will. It begins: ‘I Isaac Dodd of Skelton in the Parish if Skelton in the County of Cumberland being mindful of my mortality do hereby make publish declare this to be my last will and testament’.

He left any interest from his property to his wife as well as the residue of his personal belongings to her to distribute amongst his brothers and sisters and her brothers and sisters according to her own mind. No one is named. Isaac Dodd died 13 August 1818 and his will was proved on 19 September.  His effects were less than £200. 

An entry in the Parish Register of 1831 shows that an Esther Dodd aged 79 married a Thomas Mulcaster aged 75 of Croglin. It has been assumed this is Isaac Dodd’s widow.

This is a work in progress subject to change with further research.

Sources 
Cumbria Archives

Cumbria archives  PR10/V/10/6 (Rebecca Dixon) . Skelton Overseer Voucher 6 March 1785

Cumbria Archives PR10/V/14/1 (Philip Bowman)  Skelton Overseers Voucher 1 september 1788

Cumbria Archives PR10/V/1-24 Skelton Overseers Vouchers

Cumbria Archives PR 10/81, Skelton Overseers of the Poor and Churchwardens Account Book 1734-1817

Cumbria Archives PR 10/113, Letter to the Vestry Clerk. July 1790

Cumbria Archives PROB 1818/W405, Will of  Isaac Dodd

Internet

www.familysearch.org  Cumrew Parish Register 1676-1961,  accessed 5 February 2019

www.ancestry.co.uk. England Select Births, christenings, marriages and deaths 1538-1973, accessed 5 February 2019

www.bankofengland.co.uk, accessed 9 February 2019

Peter Dixon and Sons, Cotton Spinners at Longthwaite Mill, Warwick Bridge, 1809-1872

Vouchers from Hayton Parish PR102/114/9-11 concern the purchase of textiles from Peter Dixon & Sons,  Warwick Bridge.[1] The materials purchased included blue flannel, check, grey and black calico. Who the material was for is unstated, however, being of a darker cotton material, it was probably destined for the poor. Their clothes needed to be cheap, hard wearing and slow to show the dirt.

Voucher PR/102/114/10 Warwick Bridge Mill Peter Dixon & Sons
Voucher PR/102/114/10 Warwick Bridge Mill . Peter Dixon & Sons

The mill at Warwick Bridge was called Longthwaite Cotton Mill built in 1790 and run initially by brothers John, Richard and George Ferguson. John died in 1802 and in 1809 Richard and George, offered the mill’s lease to their brother-in-law Peter Dixon (1753-1832).[2] Peter, a merchant from Whitehaven, had married their sister Mary Ferguson (1762-1814) in 1783. [3] Dixon took on the lease with his sons John (1785-1857), Peter  (1789-1866) and George (1794-1860). Dixon’s other children were Richard (b.1788) , Ann (b.1792), Robert (b.1793) Joseph F. (b.1795), Frances (b.1797) Mary (b.1798) and Sarah (b.1800).[4] The brothers Peter and John bought extra land in order to enlarge the mill and improve its access to a good water supply. They built new cottages and provided employment for those living in the local area as well as a few residing in the poorhouse. [5] Women and children employed in the mill were paid 3s to 10s depending on their age. Peter Dixon died in 1832 and the sons sought to expand the business further as the textile industry expanded overall. Peter Dixon jun. was the most influential in the running of the mill.

In 1834 the Dixons bought land in Duke Street, Carlisle. They also bought nearby shops and houses to let to their workers. The cotton mill in Shaddongate and the accompanying chimney were completed on 25 October 1836.[6] At the time the chimney was the highest in the country. The mill was powered by steam rather than water. Production continued at Warwick Bridge, although the Dixons did try to sell the mill, without success staying and building further workers cottages and a school.

What remains of Longthwaite Cotton Mill Warwick Bridge Photograph taken 14th february 2019 M dean
What remains of Longthwaite Cotton Mill Warwick bridge. Photograph taken 14 February 2019 M Dean

The Dixons appear to have tried to look after their workers, for example, building and supporting the school in Shaddongate, Carlisle.[7] They set aside land at both Warwick Bridge and Carlisle for gardens giving an annual premium to those with the best cultivated ground. By 1843 there were 120 cottage gardens at Warwick Bridge. [8]. A church was built at Warwick Bridge at the Dixons’ expense with free seats [9]. Following an outbreak of typhus in Warwick Bridge and the neighbourhood, Peter Dixon jun. made a cash donation of £20 to the House of Recovery in Carlisle. [10]

The Dixons built and lived in substantial residences themselves. Peter and his wife Sarah Rebecca Clark lived at Holme Eden Hall, Warwick Bridge, built around 1840; John and his wife Mary T Stordy at The Knells near Houghton built in 1826 . George and his wife Mary Boucher lived at Tullie House, Carlisle, his father Peter having bought it in 1825. The Dixons were influential in the politics of Carlisle , Peter and George serving terms as Mayor. By 1847 they had a further 2 mills at Cummersdale and Dalston along with the mills at Warwick Bridge and Shaddongate. In total, the Dixons employed about 8000 people.

Peter Dixon died 28 April 1866 and was buried in the grounds of Holme Eden Church. The Carlisle Journal  reported that many villages came to the church  to pay their respects not only to someone who had spent a long life amongst them but who had also shown them true acts of benevolence. [11] By 1872 the cotton industry was less profitable. Proceedings were begun for the liquidation of Peter Dixon & Sons.[12] Peter Dixon’s  estate was sold, including Holme Eden Hall and the workers’ cottages at Burnrigg near Warwick Bridge. [13] Cotton production ceased at Warwick Bridge but the Dixon’s continued for a short while as a new limited company involved in the completion process of the textiles from the Shaddongate factory.

Most of the mills and buildings the Dixons built still exist today being adapted for differing purposes. The largest of which, Dixon’s chimney, is still a well known local landmark with a small tweed mill nearby. Ferguson Brothers opened a Mill at Holme Head, Carlisle in 1824. That building also survives.

Dixon's chimney and Shaddongate Mill Carlisle Photograph taken 14th february 2019
Dixon’s Chimney and Shaddongate Mill Carlisle Photograph taken 14 February 2019 M Dean

Sources

[1] Cumbria Archives. PR102/114/9, Hayton Overseers’ Voucher, 15 February 1833; PR102/114/10, Hayton Overseers’ Voucher, 3 December 1833; PR102/114/11, Hayton Overseers’ Voucher,12 January 1833

[2] Mawson D.J.W., 1976 Longthwaite Cotton Mill. Transactions of Cumberland and Westmorland Antiquarian & Archeological Society p160-183
[3] Cumberland Paquet and Ware’s Whitehaven Advertiser, 9 September 1783
[4] www.ancestry.co.uk, accessed 15 February 2019
[5] Warwick Bridge and District Local History Group, Who worked at the Mill 1792-1845? (Open Doors Publishing, 2014)
[6] Carlisle Journal, 3 December 1836
[7] Carlisle Journal, 3 November 1838
[8] Carlisle Journal, 8 July 1843
[9] Carlisle Journal, 13 July 1844
[10] Carlisle Patriot, 10 December 1831
[11] Carlisle Journal, 8 May 1866
[12] The London Gazette, 19 July 1872
[13] The Whitehaven News, 17 July 1873

Elizabeth Wilson (fl. 1785-1788): Money Troubles Part Two

PR 10/V/12, Skelton Overseers’ Voucher, Elizabeth Wilson to Isaac Dodd, 25 June 1786

 

One of the vouchers from Skelton initially caused a bit of a puzzle. This was resolved when it became apparent that it was from Elizabeth Wilson to Isaac Dodd, the Skelton vestry clerk. This was not the only letter that Elizabeth had written to Isaac. Like Elizabeth’s previous letter, (see https://thepoorlaw.org/2018/12/29/elizabeth-wilson-fl-1785-1788/), this one, dated 25 June 1786, came from Kendal and was to be left at the Black Bull, Penrith.

It begins ‘I received the money but both genes was light’. Once more she was talking about guineas given to her and their validity. Their light weight was the source of her unease and the consequent effect this had on its monetary value.

 

The Guinea was minted in Britain between 1663 and 1814. It weighed approximately one quarter ounce of gold. Its value could fluctuate with the rise and fall in the price of gold. By 1717, however, its value was fixed at 21shillings. The guinea Elizabeth was given was most likely a George III guinea. During his reign these were issued in six different obverses and three reverses. From 1761 to 1786 the guinea showed a crowned shield on the reverse. In 1787 the guinea was called the ‘spade guinea’ referring to the crowns shield in the shape of a spade on the reverse.

It was the weight of the coin that concerned Elizabeth. These coins not only lost weight with wear but irregularity of shape meant they were the target of counterfeiters; clipping being one such offence. Pieces were shaved from the edge of the coin to melt down for the gold to be sold or made into other coins. Elizabeth was obviously aware of the problem of counterfeit coins. Warnings appeared in the newspapers of the time. The following appeared in the Newcastle Chronicle:

Counterfeit guineas are now in circulation in Whitehaven which seem to have been produced only a few days since. They are much thinner than the real guinea poorly relieved and so badly executed that they can pass upon none but the very ignorant.

In 1786 the Derby Mercury reported concerns about counterfeit copper coins being released into general circulation and the impact it would have on the lower classes. The Mayor offered a reward of five guineas for help in bringing those responsible to justice.  Nearer to Skelton at a later date and at the instigation of the Mint, Richard Irving was prosecuted by Thomas Ramshay and received a sentence of six months hard labour for knowingly possessing counterfeit coins when arrested by Hesket Newmarket Poorhouse doorway. Previously he had been a husbandman of good character, but was now selling pots and living in camps at the hedge-sides.

Another profitable crime was that of ‘uttering’.  This often involved a genuine coin or coins being swapped for a counterfeit one while making a purchase. Women were often involved in uttering or passing of bad coins. The notion being they were more easily trusted and able to dispose of the false coins.

Elizabeth Wilson’s upset seems to be directed at the coins she has been sent rather than any malice towards Isaac Dodd.  She finished her letter: ‘My mother desiers (sic) to be remembered to you all so no moor[more] at present from your frend (sic) and well wesher (sic). However by November 1787 she is still having trouble with the weight of the guinea.

Sources

Cumbria Archives

PR 10/V/12, Skelton Overseers’ Voucher, Elizabeth Wilson to Isaac Dodd, 25 June 1786

Newspapers

Newcastle Chronicle, 4 August 1781

Saunders Newsletter, 20 September 1786

Derby Mercury, 19 December 1786

Carlisle Journal, 19 October 1839

Websites

www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0 March 2018 accessed 13/01/2019

https://wwwlondonmintoffice.org accessed 13/01/2019

This is a work in progress, subject to change with further research

Stephen Foster

Stafford Record Office Ref D1149/6/2/8/52 Darlaston, Staffordshire Paupers’ Vouchers.

A Settled bill from Richard Meek to Richard Taylor for £1 3s 5d dated April to Oct 1823 for Shoe repairs and new shoes. The names included Stephen Foster for “shoes with high heels for a lame foot.” As a retired Podiatrist I realised that Stephen probably had a form of club foot called Talipes Equinus in which the heel cannot reach the ground; similar to a horse’s foot hence the name.

Looking for Stephen I discovered several Stephen Fosters in Darlaston and reconstructed the family using a very informative Will and the St. Lawrence Parish Records.

 

Transcription of part of the Will of Stephen Foster dated 1813

Stephen Foster of Darlaston, Gunlockforger I give and devise:-

  1. unto my wife Hannah Foster for her natural life all and every my messuages tenements or dwellinghouses shops gardens hereditaments and real estate. After her decease I give and devise unto my son in Law William Bailey all that messuage tenement or dwelling house situate in Darlaston aforesaid and the shop near the same now in the occupation of the said William Bailey And also a necessary house near the said premises which is used by the occupiers of all my buildings in Darlaston. And also a pigstie near the said necessary house.
  2. After the decease of my wife I give and devise to my son Stephen Foster All that messuage tenement or dwelling house in Darlaston with the shop near the same now in the occupation of my said son Stephen and also full and free liberty power and authority to throw the shop slack through the window of the said shop and to fetch and carry away the same as often as shall be necessary but so nevertheless that the said shop slack be not suffered to obstruct the road to the shop hereinbefore given and devised to the said William Bailey more than is absolutely necessary And also the coal house and pigstie adjoining the said house which is now in the occupation of my said son.
  3. After the decease of my wife I give unto my son Josiah All that messuage tenement or dwelling house with the shop in the garden near to property [of] my son Job Foster And all that garden ground or void land the whole width and extending from the eastern part of the last mentioned shop to the back road to the Church and are now in my own occupation except the said shop which is occupied by my said son Josiah
  4. I give and devise to my sons Stephen and Josiah All that newly erected shop situate in Darlaston near the said other shops and now in my own occupation To hold the same unto and to the use of my said sons Stephen and Josiah as Tenants in common and not as joint Tenants. Provided always that the owners and tenants or occupiers of all the said messuages tenements or dwellinghouses shops and premises shall have an equal right to the pump standing near and belonging thereto and to have and take water therefrom and that the said pump and the well shall from time to time be repaired amended and kept in repair at the joint and equal costs and charges of the owners of the said messuages tenements or dwellinghouses and premises. And that the owners and tenants or occupiers of the said premises aforesaid shall have an equal right to the entry or passage and to pass and repass thereby to and from the street in front of the said premises to and from the back part of the respective premises.
  5. I give and devise to the said William Bailey and my said sons Stephen and Josiah All the void land at the back of the said dwelling houses except the garden ground or void land herebefore devised to my son Josiah. To hold the same unto the use of the said William Bailey and my said sons Stephen and Josiah as Tenants in common and not as joint tenants
  6. I give and bequeath to my said son Josiah my suit of black cloaths [sic] and to the said William Bailey and my said sons Stephen and Josiah all other my wearing apparel equally.
  7. I give and bequeath to my Grandson Richard Foster son of my late son George Foster one complete set of gunlock forgers tools to be chosen from my tools by him.
  8. I also give and bequeath to my said son Stephen all the rest of my tools belonging to my trade of a Gunlock Forger.
  9. I give and bequeath to my son Josiah the sum of fifty pounds.
  10. I give and bequeath to my executors hereinafter named all my household goods and furniture money securities for money book debts personal estate and effects, for my wife to have the use of all my household goods furniture bedding linen and other household effects for and during the term of her natural life
  11. Upon further trust to put and place the remainder of my said money personal estate and effects out at Interest upon government or real security and to pay all the Interest and product thereof unto my said wife for and during the term of her natural life
  12. And from and immediately after the decease of my said wife I give and bequeath to my son Job the sum of one Hundred pounds, to my son Stephen the sum of fifty pounds to the said William Bailey the sum of fifty pounds to my grandson Richard Foster the sum of Twenty pounds , to my grandson John Foster the sum of twenty pounds, to my grandson Stephen Foster the sum of twenty pounds, to my grandson Stephen Carter the sum of Twenty Pounds, and to my grandson George Carter the sum of Twenty Pounds.
  13. And from and immediately after the decease of my said wife I give and  bequeath all the rest and residue and remainder of my said household goods and furniture, money, securities for money, book debts, personal estate, and effects whatsoever and wheresoever and not herebefore given and disposed of to my daughter Elizabeth the wife of the said William Bailey and to my said sons Stephen and Josiah equally.
  14. And Lastly I do hereby nominate constitute and appoint my friend Francis Taylor of Darlaston, Miner my said sons Stephen and Josiah and my son in Law William Bailey joint executors of this my Will. In Witness whereof I the said Testator have to this my last Will and Testament contained and written on three sheets of paper, to the first two sheets set my hand and to this third and last sheet my hand and seal the this third day of January One Thousand and thirteen.

Signed Stephen Foster  Witnesses Thos. Brevitt, Butcher, Darlaston and A. Rooker, Surgeon, Darlaston

.

Codicil dated 12 Mar 1813 removes Francis Taylor as an executor. A more shakey signature from Stephen. Wit: Moses Foster (Darlaston), William Foster (Darlaston) and Jno. Sketchley Clk to Messrs Crowther, Wednesbury.

The Chart above shows the family but curiously no Baptism has been found for either Job or George Foster. Job appears to have been born circa 1765 calculated from his age at burial but George who was dead before 1813 has no age given so I have guessed it based on the age of his first child.

There were 4 Stephen Fosters alive in 1823 – Stephen born 1777 s/o Stephen; Stephen born 1799 s/o Job; Stephen born 1800 s/o George and Stephen born 1817 s/o Josiah.

Stephen born 1777 and his brother Josiah inherited property from their Father so I have discounted these and their children as being less likely to need the help of the Overseers of the Poor.

That leaves the two Stephens born 1799 and 1800 as likely candidates. These were the sons of Job and George both of whom Stephen the Gun lock Forger claims in 1813 to be his sons but he leaves them considerably less than his other sons (Stephen and Josiah). It could be that he had previously provided for them, but this part of the family may be considerably less well off financially. It could be that Job and George were either adopted or illegitimate sons.

There is also a curious familiarity of the Names.

Frances Taylor is named as an executor. Could he be related to the one who went to Tettenhall to become Governor of the Workhouse? William Bailey – a William Bayley has supplied goods and services to the Darlaston Workhouse. A Rooker is also the surgeon to the Darlaston Workhouse.

Both Stephen who died 1813 and his wife Hannah are buried with an abode of Church St. Using this and the description of the various properties in the Will I am wondering if they can be identified. The Will states that he gives to Josiah ‘And all that garden ground or void land the whole width and extending from the eastern part of the last mentioned shop to the back road to the Church’.  Also’And that the owners and tenants or occupiers of the said premises aforesaid shall have an equal right to the entry or passage’

Using Google Earth and Maps it appears that this property might be between Church Street and Cramp Hill as there is an entry to the Church from Cramp Hill.

 

(Google Maps)

There is a Passageway between what is now Hair by Wendy and Kirans Balti making me wonder if the car park etc behind might be the land in question. Or they could be a little further along to the right of the photograph.

Elizabeth Wild and Solomon Smith, of Betley, Staffordshire

The following voucher comes from the parish of Betley, Staffordshire and is an agreement by Solomon Smith, the son-in-law of Elizabeth Wild, to indemnify the Churchwardens and Overseers regarding her maintenance. In return for agreeing to pay the Churchwardens and Overseers a fixed sum of money, Smith was to receive what amounted to an annuity.  Perhaps Smith was banking on his mother-in-law living for longer than the value of his £20 indemnity. We have come across no other vouchers similar to this.

Transcription:-

8 March 1797

I promise to pay to the Churchwardens and Overseers of Betley in the County of Stafford the sum of Twenty pounds in Case any Charges and Expenses heretofor (sic) be upon them on account of my mother in law Elizabeth Wild whether as to her maintenance funeral or otherwise They undertaking to pay me two shillings a week during her natural life As witness my hand

The mark X of Solomon Smith

 

Soloman Smith married Mary Wild on 3 Nov 1782 at Church Lawton (Cheshire BTs) only about 7 miles away from Betley.

Soloman Smith was possibly the illegitimate child baptised at St. Peter Ad Vincula, Stoke on Trent. 9 Oct 1725 Soloman son of Catherine Smith.

Mary Wild was baptised at St. Margaret’s, Betley, Staffordshire on 11 Jun 1763 and was the daughter of Ralph and Betty Wild (spelt Wyld)

Ralph Wylde married Elizabeth Cotton on 16 May 1749 at St. Margaret’s, Betley, Staffordshire and so far only 2 children’s baptisms have been found in St. Margaret’s Parish Records, Betley, Staffordshire

  1. Peter Wyld bapt 17 April 1759 at St. Margaret’s Betley Buried 12 Sept 1819
  2. Mary Wyld bapt 11 Jun 1763 at St. Margaret’s Betley

Ralph Wild was buried 2 Aug 1785 at St. Margaret’s, Betley

So far the burial for Elizabeth or Betty Wild is not identified and so do not know if Soloman Smith made a good investment.  2s per week = 104s pa. £20 divided by 104s = 3.8yrs.

INSKIPS OF DILHORNE.

Document Ref D5/A/PO/7 seen in Stafford Record Office is a book (think of a largish School exercise book) recording weekly and extra payments over the years 1813 and 1814 for the Parish of Dilhorne, Staffordshire. Unfortunately the first page is missing. What stood out immediately was the number of payments to members of the Inskip family totaling 32 over the 2 years span.

Of the 32 entries 25 of them appear to be relating to Richard Inskip, his wife or family.

Studying them further the conclusion is that they relate to more than one Richard Inskip as one records paying Richard Inskip for his horse and cart taking Sherratt’s family back. Two entries mention that they paid 4 shillings and 3 shillings to the wife of Richard Inskip Stone Mason. Probably as a Stone Mason he had a horse and cart and Richard Inskip 1763 – 1840 Wheelwright in his Will left a Blacksmith’s shop, house and a piece of land.

This leaves other payments to Richard Inskip’s wife and family totalling £20 4s 0d.  This was a large amount of money https://www.measuringworth.com calculates it could be as high as £84,000 in 2018 value.

It was rather complicated trying to find out who Richard Inskip was as Richard was a popular name in the Inskip Family. In the end it required traveling back 5 generations to Richard Inskip a Blacksmith living in Blythe Bridge, parish of Dilhorne (which is next to Forsbrook) and his descendants.  Most of these were straight forward as they had a Blacksmith’s shop in Forsbrook, parish of Dilhorne and also a Wheelwright’s. These descendants account for the odd payments to Richard (stone mason) Thomas and Ralph.

The payment on 16 Oct 1813 for “expences at Lane End, Mr Smith, Mr Smalie and John Whalley with Mary Inskip” is more problematic as I could not find any Mary Inskip other than Mary Ridge who married Richard Inskip on 21 Sept 1802 in Dilhorne. The problem was that I had one too few Richards as the ones I had found were married to other wives who were still alive in 1813 and 1814.

Researching for a Richard Inskip born before 1785 (ie old enough to marry in 1802) brought up a man who was transported in 1833/34 and was worth considering.

Registers of convicts in the hulk ‘Cumberland’, moored at Chatham, with gaoler’s reports, 1830-1833

“Richard Inskip aged 56 for stealing a quantity of cord. Convicted 28 Feb 1833 at Stafford. Of Bad character disposition and ordours? An old offender (595, 597.)  Lifetime in Prison convicted of uttering base coins. V.D.L. [Van Dieman’s Land?] per Moffatt [A Ship] 26 Nov 1833. Born Lane End, Black Hair, Heavy Eyes, Black Lashes. Short oval visage. Can read and write. 5 foot 7½ inches tall. Married with children. Pitted with Small Pox, high cheek bones. Severely scarred on left side.  Wife lives by the side of Edward Onions & Wm Field? Under Mrs Batkins, Lane End, Staffordshire”

Registers of convicts in the hulk ‘Dolphin’, moored at Chatham, with gaoler’s reports, 1829-1835 Is similar to the above but adds that he is sentenced to 7 years and he has 7 children

New South Wales And Tasmania: Settlers And Convicts 1787-1859 Richard Inskip assd. To Dr. Desailly

https://www.digitalpanopticon says he was freed in 1840.

The Hobart Town Courier and Van Diemen’s Land Gazette 24 Jan 1840 THE GAZETTE. FRIDAY MORNING JANUARY 24, 1840. GOVERNMENT NOTICE, No. 11, Colonial Secretary’s Office, January 21. The period for which the under-mentioned persons were transported, expiring at the date placed after their respective names, certificates of their freedom may be obtained then, or at any subsequent period, upon application at the Muster Master’s Office, Hobart Town, or at that of a Police Magistrate in the interior: The list includes – Richard Inskip 28 Feb. [1840]

In 1812 /1813 Richard Inskip was accused of Felony. Lane End 27 May 1813. Richard Inskip was accused of stealing a horse. Reading the depositions of witnesses in Stafford Record Office (ref. Q/SB 1813 T/204-206) we learn that on the night of 4-5 June 1812 Thomas More of Penkhull and Robert Jones of Rhuabon lost a 4 year old Dark brown horse 15 hands high with white hind legs a blaze on the forehead and a brown muzzle.  No more was heard of the horse until the following August when acting on information they found him “working another team in Cresser” [possibly Creswell]. 

The horse was stolen around the time of Rugeley Fair in June 1812. Several people saw Richard Inskip with the horse in his stable in Forsbrook.  Richard Inskip associated with Wm. Roberts who told George Hurst he was William Smith. They were seen together at the Golden Lion at Lane End.[Now Longton]

27 May 1813 Richard Inskip’s evidence was that he left Rugeley about 4.0pm on 6th June with 4 men. He says he bought the horse for £14? 15s. He had left her with Copestick at Stallington and then fetched her and put her in his stable at Stone house, Forsbrook.

Joseph Copestick of Stallington says on 8th Richard Inskip brought a horse to him asking that it be laid in his land. Richard Inskip fetched the horse on the 28th and paid 20s for the said lay.

Joseph Gosling says that Robert Jones and Thomas More came and claimed the horse on his father’s farm and he took them to Richard Inskip of Forsbrook who had visited the horse in his father’s stable. Richard Inskip said it was his horse that he had bought on the 7th June when returning from Rugeley Fair. It was a stranger who sold it to him. It was suggested that they all go to the Wheat Sheaf at Stoke and send for the Farmer who was said to be present at the time. Richard Inskip ran away towards the place they got the horse from. The examinant ran after but could not catch him.

Hugh Davies, collier, says he was told by  Ann Smith of Hanley that Richard Jones of Hanley collier, advanced William Roberts thirty shillings upon a watch which was left in pawn to him, to be redeemed when Inskip and Roberts sold a horse. The watch was not redeemed

Joseph Heath a Blacksmith in Forsbrook said that Richard Inskip bought the brown horse at Rugeley Fair last June 1812 and Richard Inskip asked him [Joseph Heath] to cut 2-3 inches off the tail. He had not been cut before.

Ruth Neath says she has known Richard Inskip for near 2 years and has seen him with William Roberts who has stayed in his house.

Thomas Smith of Forsbrook said he had expected to meet Richard Inskip at Rugeley Fair on 5th June but did not see him. He saw him the next day and asked why he had not come and Richard Inskip gave some excuse he could not remember.

Case sent to the Assizes.

Staffordshire Summer Assizes 1821 Richard, Inskip for Uttering counterfeit money, at Cheddleton—6 Months and sureties for 12. (John Mare admitted evidence.)

The Quarter sessions case of 1813 and its connection to Lane End or as it became Longton and Forsbrook suggested a connection to the payment on 16 Oct 1813.

There was no baptism for a Richard Inskip in Dilhorne or Longton / Lane End but there was one in St. Peter Ad Vincula, Stoke on Trent on 27 Aug 1767 and he was the son of Edward and Mary Inskip. There was at least one older sister for Richard baptised at St. Peter’s and this was Hannah baptised 12 July 1761 the daughter of Edward and Jane Inscip of Lane End.

Edward was not such a common name in the Inskip family and his baptism was found back in Dilhorne on 12 Feb 1727 and he was the son of Thomas and Sarah Inskip who may have married in 1723 at St Alkmund’s, Derby, Derbyshire.  Thomas died 1737.

There is a problem with the Dilhorne Parish Records. Thomas must have been born before 1705 to have married in 1723 and there is something of a gap in the Parish Records. Browsing the Parish Register there are retrospective entries by either the new Vicar or Parish Clerk of items found after the previous Vicar had died.  Unfortunately Thomas Inskip is not included but there only appears to be one couple baptising children at the time so Thomas was probably the son of Richard Inskip, Blacksmith 1662-1708.

This gives a connection between the Inskips of Longton / Lane End and Dilhorne.  If Richard and Mary married in All Saints Dilhorne and baptised children there it suggests that they may have been living there for some time.

They appear to have had the following children

  1. George Ridge Inskip baptised 1803 in Stone, Staffordshire died 1815
  2. Ralph Inskip baptised 1805 in Dilhorne
  3. John Inskip born about 1808 in Dilhorne [name supplied by Inskip one name study]
  4. ??????
  5. James Inskip baptised 1815 in Longton
  6. Mary Inskip baptised 1816 in Longton
  7. George Inskip baptised 1818 in Longton
  8. Eliza Inskip baptised 1821 in Longton
  9. Joseph Inskip baptised 1825 in Longton.

The youngest child, Joseph, was baptised at the New Connextion Chapel, Longton which records “Joseph Inskip born 3 Nov 1825 and baptised 4 Dec 1825 the 9th child of Richard Inskip, Labourer of Lane End by Mary daughter of William Ridge, Potter of Lane End.”

The Dilhorne Overseers may have been supporting Richard’s wife Mary and his children until they managed to get them back to Longton.

The 1841 Census HO107/991 folio 6 shows Mary Inskip aged 60 living in Willow Street, Longton with her son Joseph aged 15 a collier and her son George appears to be married and living a few doors away.

Staffordshirebmd.org.uk has a death entry for Mary Inskip aged 75 registered in Burslem. No death certificate has been bought but Mary’s son John is living in Haywood Pl, Burslem in 1851 working as a Potters Fireman.

No death has been found for Richard Inskip but he was still alive in 1845 when the Hobart Town Courier and Van Diemen’s Land Gazette reported on Sat 1 Feb 1845 “Case against Richard Inskip was dismissed. Inskip had challenged Turner to fight, and got the worst of it”

 

Ann Barnard (1805-1882), Gnossall

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

Notes

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

iv      D951/5/94

Sources

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

Jane Sewell (1759–1823) Parish of Skelton, Cumberland

Voucher PR10/V/14/7 December 4 1788 Jane Sewell

Jane Sewell’s name appears regularly on the surviving vouchers for Skelton parish, between 1784 and 1788, usually receiving the sum of £0.19s.6d for the maintenance of her child. Sometimes the bills are signed by her father John or by her with her mark, a cross. Therefore, it is presumed Jane was not literate enough to sign. Jane’s name also appears on the list of those receiving payments in the Churchwarden and Overseers’ Account Book of 1788 (see Ann Stubbs). The payments being made by Isaac Dodd, Vestry Clerk.

Baptised on 3 May 1759 in Skelton parish, Jane was the daughter of John Sewell, a yeoman. She appears to have lived most of her life there. She was in Skelton when Rev Tovey Jolliffe purchased the place she occupied in 1820. (See the separate blog on Jolliffe). Jane had five siblings: Izilla (1760–1766); John (bap. 1763); twins, Timothy and Mary (bap. 1765) who both died within a few days; and Zillah (bap. 1766). Their father died on 17 April 1813.

Jane had 4 children Mary (bap. 1779), Henry (bap. 1784), Anne (bap. 1788) and Rahel (bap. 1793). The father of one is known. All baptized in Skelton. She actively sought financial assistance for her children. The Warrants for refusal to pay on Bastardy orders at Cumbria Archives reveal a letter written by William Wilson, Justice of the Peace, asking the Constables to summon the Overseers to explain why Jane has been refused relief.

William Wilson, letter PR 10/72-80 (74)

Whereas Jane Sewell of your parish hath this day made oath unto me William Wilson that she the sd [said]Jane Sewell is very poor and not able to provide for herself and bastard child and that the Sd [said] Jane Sewell did at several times apply to the overseers of the poor of the parish and was by them refused to be relieved. Then one therefore does require you to summon two of the overseers of the poor of Skelton parish to appear before me on Tuesday next at the house of Mrs Roper, Sun Inn, Penrith, in the county at the hour of eleven o’clock in the forenoon to show cause why relief should not be given to the Sd [said] Jane Sewell.

The letter is dated 28 September 1784. From the vouchers that have been found it appears Jane did eventually get her relief.

By 1793 Jane was once again seeking help for her children. Again through the jurisdiction of William Wilson.

As on the oath of Jane Sewell of Skelton in the said county of Cumberland single woman that on the seventeenth day of June last the said Jane Sewell was delivered of a female bastard child at Skelton and that John Nicholson of Skelton is the father of the said bastard child is now living and likely to become chargeable to the said parish of Skelton.

The Constables of the parish were ordered to bring Jane Sewell to Isaac Wilkinson’s house to be further examined while John Nicholson was also to attend to make his lawful defence. The putative father was responsible for the maintenance of illegitimate children, the parish authority releasing funds until the father could do so. In 1792 this was the case with Jane’s brother John Sewell. He was ordered first to pay £1.3s 6d to the Overseers of Skelton then £0.1s.9d weekly as he was adjudged to be the reputed father of Mary Jackson’s child.

Jane Sewell was buried at Skelton the 30 March 1823 aged 63.

jane Sewell claim against John Nicholson PR 10/72-80 (76)

Sources

Cumbria Archives Carlisle
PR 10/81, Skelton Oversees of the Poor and Churchwarden accounts book, 1734-1817

PR 10/72-80, Skelton Warrants for refusal to pay on Bastardy orders, 1779–1806

DCC 1/47, Deeds Mostly small properties in Skelton mainly sold to Thomas James and Thornbarrow (p. Hutton) and Penrith, 1736-1801 and to the Rev Tovey Jolliffe Rector of Skelton 1796-1820

Voucher PR 10/V/14/7, Skelton Overseers’ Vouchers December 4 1788 (Jane Sewell)

PR 10, The register of the parish church of Skelton 1580-1812 baptisms burials, and marriages, marriages and deaths 1813-1832

www.londonlives.org