Rebecca Woodhouse

Rebecca Woodhouse was the daughter of Mary Redfern and Anthony Woodhouse, and was Ari’s 5x great-grandmother. She was their first child, born in 1791 in Bonsall, Derbyshire, and baptised on the 24th of July.

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At the age of 20, she married a quarryman, Isaac Spencer. The couple had ten children: Hannah, Isaac, Charlotte, Joseph, Anthony, William, Francis, Rebecca, Thomas and Sarah.

In 1841 the family are at Water Lane, in Middleton-by-Wirksworth. Four of the children are at home, with 15-year-old Anthony working as a lead miner.

In 1851, just 14-year-old Thomas is at home with Rebecca and Isaac.

Rebecca died on 20 February 1854 in Middleton. She was 62 years old.

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Looking north from Middleton, with Bonsall in the distance. Strip fields can be seen in middle distance, right. 

Ari, this is how you are related to Rebecca:

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Robert Butler of Bredicot

One of Ari’s 4x great-grandfathers was Robert Butler, who was born in 1837 in Bredicot, Worcestershire. Bredicot is a small parish in the centre of the county, about 4 miles east of Worcester.

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A traditional Bredicot barn

Conveniently, Robert was born in the year that civil registration of births became compulsory, so we know that his father was Thomas Butler and his mother was Elizabeth Reynolds. He was the first of their nine children, and was baptised on 5 October 1837 at the thirteenth-century church of St James the Less.

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The 1841 census shows him with his parents and younger brother William, living in the hamlet of Libbery, in the parish of Grafton Flyford.

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A post box on a road junction at Libbery

They were still there in 1851, and Robert now had three more brothers and a sister. He was now 13 and at school.

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By the time of the next census, in April 1861, Robert was employed as a cow man at Upper Goosehill Farm in Hanbury.

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Upper Goosehill House dates from the 17th century and is part of the Upper Goosehill Farm complex

 

Shortly after that he married Caroline Lumley in Evesham, and their first daughter, Elizabeth, was born in 1862. The family had moved to Huddington by 1871, by which time Harriet and Annie (Ari’s great-great-great-grandmother) had also been born. Robert was now working as an agricultural labourer.

In 1881 only Annie was still at home with her parents, and a nephew, John Keen, was also living with them. They were now living in Lower Crowle.

Robert was widowed in 1895, and in 1901 his granddaughter, 15-year-old Kate Wilks, was living with him. She worked at home as a glove machinist, and he was still working as an agricultural labourer.

In the last census, of April 1911, he is on his own at the age of 73, and still working as a farm labourer. Robert died in December 1917, and was buried at Crowle on 18 December.

Ari, this is how you are related to Robert:

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James Penny of Fonthill Bishop

One of Ari’s 6x great-grandfathers was James Penny. He was born in 1772 in Chilmark, Wiltshire, and baptised on 26 July of that year.

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Wiltshire, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812

(It looks like Parry, but there is another entry further down the page that convinced me that it says Penny.) James’s parents were Robert and Ann.

The second record we have for James is his marriage, which took place on 19 March 1795 at the church in Fonthill Bishop. His bride was Judith Strong,

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All Saints Church
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Wiltshire, England, Church of England Marriages and Banns, 1754-1916

James and Judith had six children. Fortunately, they were still alive in 1841 for the first national census, so we can find out his occupation, which is ‘agricultural labourer’. James and Judith are both listed as 65. They are living in Fonthill Bishop with daughter Mary (40). Mary didn’t marry, and after her parents’ death she went to live with her brother Robert, a timber sawyer.

In 1851 James was a widower, living with daughter Mary and a grandson, Henry. They are listed as paupers.

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(This Henry is Ari’s 4x great-grandfather, the son of Mary Anne Ballard and John Penny.)

James died on 30 July 1856, aged 84. Occupation was given as agricultural labourer, and the cause of death was chronic bronchitis. Charlotte Penny was present at his death. This is likely to be his granddaughter, the younger sister of Henry. His burial took place in Fonthill Bishop on 2 August. We visited the churchyard and found some possible relations, but not James.

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Ari, this is how you are related to James:

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Caroline Dawson of Derby (and the Hot Dog King)

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Caroline Dawson was Ari’s 4x great-grandmother, the mother of Annie Morris (whose story is told in this post). Yesterday we visited Dale Road in Derby, where she lived, and found this Sikh gurdwara.

The house is still there, but is now a little shop, Oceans Travel:

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Caroline was born in 1844 in Duffield, Derbyshire. In 1851 she can be seen in the census, aged six, living at Upper Green. Her father, Henry Dawson, was a silk glove maker and framework knitter, and her older brother William was a silk winder. Her grandparents (Henry’s parents, Francis and Martha) were also living with them at the time of the census.

The local newspapers at this time were full of articles discussing the depressed state of the hosiery industry. This is from the Derby Mercury on 24 September 1851:

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By the time that she was sixteen, Caroline was working as a silk glove seamer. In 1864 Caroline’s father died, and on 28 December 1868 she married William Morris, a foundry labourer, at the Register Office in Derby. The 1871 census shows Caroline living with William in the house of his parents, no. 69 Russell Street, Litchurch.

This is the street where Harry M. Stevens, inventor of the hot dog, once lived. He also worked at a local foundry before emigrating to the US. Other ideas of his included improved baseball scorecards for spectators, and selling soda with a straw so you could drink without missing the game.

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Derby Daily Telegraph 12 October 1940

Litchurch is described on Wikipedia as “originally an obscure locality on the edge of Derby” but “rapid urbanisation and population growth in the 19th century led to it briefly existing as a separately governed local authority between 1860 and 1888, prior to once again being absorbed by its neighbour”.

By 1881 Caroline and William were living at 6 Harrington Street in Derby (the house isn’t there any more). Caroline had now had a son, John Henry, who was born in 1869 but sadly died at the age of twelve, and three daughters: Elizabeth Ann (Lizzie) in 1873; Charlotte Ellen (Nellie) in 1875 and Annie in 1880.

In 1891 they are at the same address. Elizabeth and Charlotte are both working (as assistant dressmaker and assistant milliner), and Caroline’s fifteen-year-old nephew, William Frank Dawson, is living with them too.

By 1901 they have moved to 38 Nelson Road, Normanton. Caroline is now fifty-six. No occupation is given for her. William is now working as a gas fitter, and daughters Charlotte and Annie are both milliners.

The 1911 census shows Caroline at 100 Dale Road, Derby, listed as “House Wife”. She died on 21 December 1914.

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Derby Daily Telegraph 21 December 1915

I have not found out where she is buried, and she did not leave a will.

Ari, this is how you are related to Caroline:

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