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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William Sheppard of Worcestershire

Today we found the grave of William Sheppard, Ari’s 4x great-grandfather, and his wife Angelina. They are both buried at the church of St John the Baptist in Crowle, Worcestershire.

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William was born in 1843 at Sale Green in Worcestershire, and christened on 24 Feb. at Huddington church.

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Parish chest in Huddington church

William’s father Joseph died when he was just five years old. In the census for 1851 he is living with his mother Mary, a ‘pauper gloveress’, and older brother Joseph.

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By 1861 Mary has become a shopkeeper, and 18-year-old William is working as an agricultural labourer. He married Angelina Tyler in 1863 and by the 1871 census they have five children: Esther, William Henry, Joseph, Fanny, and one-month-old Elizabeth. William is still an agricultural labourer.

All the children were christened at the church in Crowle.

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By 1881 two more children have been born: James in 1872 and Mary in 1876. The family are living in Sale Green, next door to Angelina’s parents John and Sarah Tyler.

In 1885 William was fined 2s. 6d. for neglecting to send his children to school:

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Worcestershire Chronicle, from Findmypast

A slight change for William by 1891. He has become a groom and coachman, and all the children have now left home.

The last census for William is in 1901. He is living in Worcester Rd, Droitwich, and working as a domestic coachman.

He died on 9 Dec 1902 and was buried on the 13th.

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Ari, this shows how you are related to William:

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William Henry Sheppard

William Henry Sheppard was Ari’s 3x great-grandfather, born on 3 Nov 1865 in Crowle, Worcestershire. His mother was Angelina Tyler (see my post of 17 July 2017).

From the various national censuses we know that William started out as a farm servant (indoor). In 1881 he was on a farm at Dunhampstead, Himbleton. By 1891 at the age of 25 he had married and was the head of his own household, listed as one of several families living at Malt House, Crowle, with his wife and their four-month-old daughter, Agnes Emily. His occupation is agricultural labourer and place of birth Grafton Flyford.

In 1901 he is living at Sale Green, Huddington, and working as a railway labourer. Four children are living at home. By 1911 he is listed as a plate-layer (someone who lays and maintains railway lines), with six of the couple’s nine children living at home.

The 1939 Register on Findmypast shows him at the age of 74 as a widower with his son Lewis, living at Sale Green. He is described as a retired permanent way labourer:

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(According to this handy list, this means a plate-layer who is engaged in maintenance work instead of construction work.)

William Henry died the age of 86. His grave at the church of St James in Huddington says:

In loving memory of William Henry SHEPPARD
Died April 10th 1952, aged 86 years

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Ari, this shows how you are related to William Henry Sheppard:

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Angelina Tyler, glove-maker

Angelina Tyler was Ari’s 4x great-grandmother, born in Crowle, Worcestershire and christened at the church of St John the Baptist on 18 August 1843. According to The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868), Crowle “formerly belonged to Worcester Abbey, and the moated building called Crowle House was once the abbot’s seat” (see http://www.genuki.org.uk/big/eng/WOR/Crowle).

By the age of 17, Angelina’s occupation was making kid gloves with her mother. At 20, she married William Sheppard at the same church in Crowle. In the 1881 census she is still listed as a glove-maker, and the couple are living next door to Angelina’s parents in Sale Green. By this time Angelina had given birth to seven children.

According to the Victoria County History, “Worcester was one of the most important centres for gloves in England”.  “When apprentice glovers neared the end of their training, they were expected to make a pair of kid gloves so fine that they could be rolled up inside a walnut shell.” (https://www.victoriacountyhistory.ac.uk/explore/items/glove-making-ledbury)

There is a fascinating account by Amanda Wilkinson of life as a gloveress: http://victorianoccupations.co.uk/g/g-is-for-gloveress/

Angelina died on 29 March 1917 and was buried in the churchyard of St John the Baptist on 1 April. This is a postcard of the church in about 1910.

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Ari, this shows how you are related to Angelina:

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