Henry Dawson, silk glove maker from Duffield

Henry Dawson was one of Ari’s 5x great-grandfathers. He was born on 18 April 1810 in Duffield, Derbyshire, the son of a linen weaver, Francis Dawson, and Martha Dunn. His baptism took place on 12 May 1810 at Duffield’s Presbyterian Chapel.

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England & Wales, Non-Conformist and Non-Parochial Registers, 1567–1970, Ancestry.co.uk

(Notes from Derbyshire County Council’s online catalogue: “The Presbyterian Chapel in Wirksworth Road, Duffield, was built before 1790. In the early 19th century the congregation adopted the Unitarian faith. By 1860 the chapel had closed, but it was subsequently rented to the trustees of Duffield Reading Room. After the 1870 Education Act, Mrs Constance Smith of Duffield Hall encouraged the establishment of an infant school in the former chapel, which remained in use for this purpose until 1895. In the 20th century it became the meeting place for many local organisations including the local Temperance Society. In the 1960s and 1970s it was a china factory called Abbeydale China Co. Ltd., and in the 1980s was used as a light engineering workshop. Despite local protests, the building was demolished in June 2001 to make way for a housing development.”)

We don’t know anything else about Henry until his marriage at the age of twenty-five. He married Charlotte Parker on 27 December 1835 at St Alkmund’s church in the village.

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Derbyshire, England, Church of England Marriages and Banns, 1754–1932, Ancestry.co.uk

The 1841 census shows us Henry, working as a silk framework knitter, his wife Charlotte, two-year-old Elizabeth, and two-month-old Philip. They were living on the Wirksworth Turnpike Road in Duffield.

The Derby to Duffield Turnpike was authorised in 1756 and operated until 1875. It is now the A6.

Henry and Martha’s first son, William (aged four), was staying with Henry’s parents.

By 1851, Henry had become a silk glove maker, sons William (14) and Philip (10) were silk winders and three more children had been born: Caroline in 1844, Martha in 1847, and Francis Henry in 1850. They were living at Upper Green, and Henry’s parents were living with them (his father Francis would die that December):

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1851 census, Ancestry.co.uk

It was not a good time to be in the industry. The local papers were full of depressing news about the state of trade, and the family would all have had to work to earn enough to live on.

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Derby Mercury, 18 December 1839, Findmypast

There had been a strike in 1845:

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Derbyshire Courier, 2 August 1845, Findmypast
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Derby Mercury, 2 July 1851, Findmypast

The family moved to Castle Orchard before the 1861 census.

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Derby Mercury 02 June 1886, Findmypast

Francis Henry had died aged two, and one more child had been born: Charlotte Agnes in 1853. Henry’s widowed mother was living with them and working as a washerwoman.

Henry died at London Rd Infirmary in Derby when he was only fifty-three, on 31 October 1864. The record of his hospital admission is included in the collection called Derbyshire Hospital Admissions And Deaths 1855–1913 on Findmypast. The cause of death was given as “Disease of bladder, Asthenia” (asthenia is weakness or lack of energy).

He was buried at St Alkmund’s on 3 November:

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Derbyshire, England, Church of England Burials, 1813–1991, Ancestry.co.uk

Ari, this is how you are related to Henry:

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Elizabeth Mitchener of Goodworth Clatford

Elizabeth Mitchener was one of Ari’s 4x great-grandmothers. She was born in Goodworth Clatford, Hampshire, in December 1840, in time to be in the 1841 census at five months old. Her father was Charles Mitchener and her mother was Mary Henrietta Smith.

Elizabeth was baptised at St Peter’s church in the village.


By the time of the 1851 census, Elizabeth was ten and attending school in the village, along with her little brother Walter. Her father Charles had died when she was only five, and her mother was working as a laundress. Elizabeth’s older brother Henry was already working as an agricultural labourer at the age of thirteen. Elizabeth’s grandmother, Jane, was also living with the family.

The 1861 census shows Elizabeth after she has left home. She is working as a housemaid in the home of Anne Vincent, at Bishop Morley’s College in Winchester. (The college provided residence for widows of clergymen. Anne had been born Anne Esther Larbalestier in Jersey in 1793, and married Frederick Vincent in 1813.)

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Jersey, Church of England Marriages, 1754-1940

In 1863, Elizabeth gave birth to a baby girl who she named Annie. Sadly, Annie died the following year.

On 6 Feb 1869, Elizabeth married John Tarrant at St Peter’s church. The parish record has been transcribed as:

February 6 1869 John TARRANT full Bachelor Labourer Goodworth Clatford father –  Henry TARRANT Farmer  &  Elizabeth MITCHENER full Spinster  Goodworth Clatford father –  Charles MITCHENER Labourer in the presence of  Gabriel WILD  &  Frances MITCHENER

(Frances was Elizabeth’s older sister, who married Gabriel Wild six years later.)

Elizabeth and John had six children: Edward in 1869, Walter in 1871, Albert in 1874, Elizabeth in 1876, and twins Ellen and Frederick in 1879.

In the 1871 census, the family are living in Goodworth Clatford. Two of Elizabeth’s nieces (Emma and Eliza Mitchener) are living with them.

Elizabeth died on 3 November 1880 from phthisis (tuberculosis). She was only 40.

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Her burial took place on the 8th, at St Peter’s. The twins had also died that same year, and Elizabeth’s mother Mary was living with John and the other four children in 1881.

Ari, this is how you are related to Elizabeth:

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Susannah Longfoot, of Pinchbeck and Spalding

Ari’s 4x great-grandmother, Susannah Longfoot, was born in Pinchbeck, a village near Spalding in Lincolnshire, in 1808. I am not sure who her parents were.

On 29 May 1828 she married a farm labourer, William Strickson, at St Mary & St Nicholas Church in Spalding.


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Lincolnshire Marriages, Findmypast.co.uk

Susannah gave birth to eleven children between 1830 and 1851.

The 1841 census shows the family at Spalding Common. By 1851 they were living on London Rd, Spalding, right next to the River Welland.


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1851 census, Ancestry.co.uk

By 1861, Susannah was in the hamlet of Low Fulney, where William owned a cottage and some land.


The 1871 census shows them at Pilmore Lane in Spalding, where William is a farmer with seven acres. In 1881, they have moved again, to Winsover Rd. Ari, this road had its own signal box and level crossing!


By this time, all of their children had left home, and they had a lodger, 77-year-old Elizabeth Mulyan.

William died in November 1886 at the age of 84, and Susannah is on her own in the 1891 census, at No. 5 Yorks Yard in Spalding, still next to the River Welland. She is described as 82 and “Living on own means”.

By 1901, however, Susannah was receiving parish relief. The census shows her living at 39 Roman Bank, close to where there is now a sluice and pumping station.


This article about someone in a similar situation gives an insight into Susannah’s circumstances:

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Stamford Mercury, 2 Nov 1900, Findmypast

Susannah died at the Infirmary, Union House, Spalding at the age of 96, on 5 Aug 1904.

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One of her children put an announcement in the Lincolnshire Chronicle.

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Lincolnshire Chronicle, 12 Aug 1904, Findmypast

Ari, this is how you are related to Susannah:

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John Goodfellow of Fovant, Wiltshire


John Goodfellow was Ari’s 8x great-grandfather. He lived in Fovant, Wiltshire, and must have been born in about 1673 (working back from the births of his children from 1695, so probable marriage in 1694). I have found a baptism at the church of St George in Fovant, on 24 July 1674, with father Richard.

Otherwise all we know about John is from the baptisms of his children: William, Mary, Anne, Lucy and Jane (all from the collection of Wiltshire, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538–1812 on Ancestry.co.uk).

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Unfortunately, none of them gives their mother’s name.

John died in July 1743 and was buried at the church on Fovant on 24 July.

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Ari, this is how you are related to John:

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Ann Willis of Grafton Flyford, Worcestershire


Ari’s 6x great-grandmother Ann Willis was born in Grafton Flyford, Worcestershire, in 1769. She was the second daughter of Edward Willis and Mary Marshall.

Grafton Flyford

Ann was baptised on 22 October 1769 at the church of St John the Baptist.

On 16 October 1792 she married agricultural labourer John Bishop at the same church, with her sister Mary acting as a witness. She and John had eight children between 1793 and 1813.

Ann died in October 1840 and was buried at the same church on 28 Oct.


Ari, this is how you are related to Ann:

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William Morris of Milford

One of Ari’s 4x great-grandfathers was William Morris, born in Milford, Derbyshire, in 1845.


He was the second son of foundry watchman John Morris and cotton spinner Ann Beresford. I have just discovered a third son, Jacob, who was born when William was five and died at eighteen months. Jacob was baptised at the Wesleyan Methodist Chapel in Milford (this was built in 1842 and closed in 1949 – see this page for a photo).

The 1851 census shows that William was aged five, and at school. The family was living at No. 8, Hopping Hill, West Terrace, Milford.

Milford – view to Hopping Hill and West Terrace
These houses appear to be 2 storeys on Hopping Hill, but are 4 storeys when viewed from Derby Road below.

These houses were built by the Strutt family for mill workers. A conservation document drawn up in 2007 provides some interesting details. Built between 1813 and 1820, the back-to-back cottages were designed with care on a challengingly steep site, and each had its own yard and garden. The cottages did not have running water until 1897.

In the 1861 census, the Morris family were at No. 5. A photo of the unaltered interior can be seen in this document. William (15), his brother George, and their father John were all listed as cotton spinners.

William married Caroline Dawson on 28 Dec 1868. By this time he was a foundry labourer living at Russell Street, Litchurch, in Derby.

Their first child, John Henry, was born the following year, and the 1871 census shows them living with William’s parents at 69 Russell Street. Another three children were born before the next census: Elizabeth Ann (Lizzie) in 1873, Charlotte Ellen (Nellie) in 1875, and Annie in 1880. William started work as an agent for an insurance company, and the family moved to No. 6 Harrington St. In the 1891 census William was still at the same address.

By 1901, William had become a gas fitter. The family were now at 38 Nelson Road in Normanton, Derby. The 1911 census shows that William was working as a gas fitter for Midlands Railway. The Derby Daily Telegraph of 22 November 1904 highlighted the dangers of the job:

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William died on 28 Dec 1914 at 100 Dale Road, Derby. He was described as a gas fitter’s labourer, Railway Works, and the cause of death was asthma, bronchitis and cardiac failure. He was sixty-nine. His daughter Annie was present. I have not found out where William was buried, and he did not leave a will.

Ari, this is how you are related to William:

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Sarah Foyle of Teffont Evias

Ari’s 5x great-grandmother Sarah Foyle was born in 1786 in Teffont Evias, Wiltshire, and baptised in Tisbury on 26 February. She was the first child of Jonas Foyle and Eve Snook.


On 13 April 1809, she married Joseph Beckett in Teffont Evias.


Joseph died in 1839, and the 1841 census shows Sarah as the head of the household, with daughter Elizabeth, son William, and a baby Eliza (not sure who she belonged to!).

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1841 census, Ancestry.co.uk

In 1851 she was living in the hamlet of Ridge, with daughter Elizabeth and two grandchildren, Eliza and John.

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1851 census, Ancestry.co.uk

I am not sure yet when Sarah died. There isn’t a death or burial that matches her age.

Ari, this is how you are related to Sarah:

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Walter Ford of Yeaveley and Mayfield, farmer

Ari’s 5x great-grandfather Walter Ford was born in Yeaveley, Derbyshire, on 3 Feb 1817, the son of farmer John Ford and his wife Elizabeth. He was baptised on 23 Feb at St Michael’s in Shirley, the first of the year in that church.

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Derbyshire, England, Church of England Baptisms, 1813–1916 on Ancestry.co.uk


The 1841 census shows Walter living in Yeaveley in the home of Ann Bladon, farmer, working as a male servant:

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1841 census, Ancestry.co.uk

On 11 Jan 1844 he married Ann’s daughter Sarah Jane Bladon.

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(As noted in Sarah’s story, she was only sixteen at the time and her mother had to give consent.)

The 1851 census shows the family at Hales Green, Yeaveley, still living with Ann:

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1851 census, Ancestry.co.uk

By then four children had been born. Sarah Jane died in 1859, and Walter is shown in the 1861 census as a widower:

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1861 census, Ancestry.co.uk

He was still in Yeaveley, working as an agricultural labourer. Three of his children were living with him (another daughter, Sarah, 6, was visiting relatives on the census night; she later moved to Lincolnshire, married there in 1883, and raised her family in Lincoln).

In 1871 Walter was living with his sister, Elizabeth Greaves, over the border with Staffordshire in Mayfield.

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1871 census, Ancestry.co.uk

I need to research this, but it looks as though their farm, Manor House, later became Old Hall Farm – see this description as part of a walk. See also https://mayfieldheritage.org.uk/old-hall-farm-middle-mayfield/

Walter was listed as a farm servant, aged 53.


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Derbyshire Advertiser and Journal, 27 December 1878, Findmypast.co.uk

Walter died at Mayfield on 9 August 1875, without making a will.

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He was buried at St John the Baptist, Mayfield.

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Staffordshire Burials, Findmypast.co.uk


Ari, this is how you are related to Walter:

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John Sims, farmer

Ari’s 6x great-grandfather John Sims was born in Heage, Derbyshire, in 1775 and baptised on 17 July at St Alkmund’s Church, Duffield. His parents were Samuel Sims and Mary Smith.

Sheep grazing in the snow, below Heage Windmill

On 19 May 1807 John married Sarah Badder at Bradley, near Ashbourne. They had a daughter, Sarah in 1810, and then John’s wife Sarah died in January 1815 just after giving birth to a son, John.

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Derbyshire, England, Church of England Burials, 1813–1991, on Ancestry.co.uk

Sarah was buried at St Peter’s Church in Belper, and the residence is given as Morley Park.

John married his second wife, Ann Slater, at the church in Duffield two years later.

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Derbyshire, England, Church of England Marriages and Banns, 1754–1932, on Ancestry.co.uk

They went on to have at least six more children: Samuel, George, William, Mary Ann, Elizabeth-Jane, and Betty. We know from the baptism record of William in 1826 that John was a farmer at Morley Park.

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Derbyshire, England, Church of England Baptisms, 1813–1916, on Ancestry.co.uk

John is listed in an 1829 County Directory as a farmer and freeholder. The 1841 census shows John at Yeldersley:

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1841 census, Ancestry.co.uk

Also in the household were Ann, sons George and William, and three servants.

The 1851 census tells us that John was at Yeldersley Farm, farming 250 acres.

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Derbyshire Courier, on Findmypast.co.uk

John died on 3 July 1858 in Yeldersley and was buried at All Saints Church in Bradley.

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john sims grave Bradley.JPG

John left a two-page will.

John Sims 1858 will.jpg

John Sims will 2.jpg

One of John’s grandchildren was Joseph Sims (son of John born in 1815). After his death, Joseph’s wife Julia Hannah Alldread paid for this beautiful stained-glass window in St Peter’s Church, Belper which we recently discovered thanks to Julia’s will: “to provide a stained glass window in Saint Peter’s Church Belper on the North side thereof at a cost not exceeding the sum of Two hundred pounds”.

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Ari, this is how you are related to John:

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William Dancocks of Kempsey

One of Ari’s 6x great-grandfathers was William Dancocks. He was born in about 1756 in Kempsey, Worcestershire, the son of Elizabeth Dancocks, and baptised on 16 October 1761 at St Mary’s Church.


There are no records of William until his marriage in 1790 to Nancy Martin.

There is a record of a William Dancocks being sentenced to three months’ imprisonment for poaching, but the criminal register gives his age as 25, so maybe a grandson?

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Worcester Journal, 9 March 1837, Findmypast.co.uk
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England & Wales, Criminal Registers, 1791–1892, Ancestry.co.uk

The 1841 census shows that William was still working as an agricultural labourer at the age of 85.

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1841 census, Kempsey. Ancestry.co.uk


William died in December 1847, and was buried at St Mary’s. His death certificate and burial record gives his age as 96.

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Ari, this is how you are related to William:

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