Tag Archives: Jacka

Richard R Jaco, Catherine Richards, Job and the hapless Clifton Grove

Richard Richards Jaco [spellings vary] was the youngest of the 8 known children of Peter Jacka and his wife Catherine Noell Kelynack, a fishing family living in Newlyn, Paul parish, Cornwall.  He was baptised on 1st December 1830 in the first year of the reign of King William IV.  Like his father he became a fisherman.

Although the youngest of 8 brothers and sisters – Peter, Benjamin, Jane, Honor, William, Charles Kelynack and Matilda – Peter and Benjamin would have been away often in the merchant service, and his sister Jane had married and moved away to St Just when Richard was just three years old, so there wouldn’t often have been 10 people in the house.

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Paul Parish Church

His future bride was Catherine Richards whom he would have seen round the village all his life, and they married at Paul Parish Church on 16 April 1850 when he was 19 and she 18 [assuming they were baptised soon after their births]. She must have been quite far gone, as by late summer they were parents of their first child, Richard Richards Jacka, handily named after both his parents. Dad Richard was perhaps at sea on 30 March 1851 when the census was taken as Catherine was staying with her son at her mother’s house in the Fradgan street in Street-An-Nowan [the lower part of Newlyn]. Sadly baby Richard died in infancy.

Their second child was baptised on 5 September 1852, another Richard Richards Jacka, and followed by Susan, baptised on 6 April 1855.  Sadly Susan died in infancy too, in November 1857.  Charles was born c 1857 and baptised on 31 October 1858, and fifth and final known child Job was born in early 1860 and baptised on 17 October 1860.

Richard’s father Peter Jacko had died in 1851, living in the Fradgan, and his mother Catherine in 1856. His brother Charles had emigrated to Australia c 1853.

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The Fradgan, Newlyn

The 7 April 1861 census finds Richard and Catherine, with sons Richard, Charles and Job, living in the Fradgan still,  which was almost entirely fishermen’s families, with a couple of carpenters/ shipwrights and dressmakers living there too; this included his married sister Honor and her fisherman husband Samuel Plomer before they moved up round the corner to Chapel Street. His brother William and his wife Grace lived two minutes away in Foundry Lane

In December 1864 there was more grief for Richard and Catherine when oldest surviving son Richard Richards died.  Catherine herself died five months later, in May 1865, aged only 33.

In April 1871 Richard and his two surviving sons Charles and Job were living in Upper Fradgan still, although Job was recorded as John. Charles, aged 14, was working as a labourer but this is the last record I can find for him.  Richard died in 1874, aged 43.

In 1881 Job was still living in the Fradgan, living with his Uncle John and Aunt Mary Richards and was working, aged 19, as a fisherman.  However soon after that he must have joined the Merchant Navy. On January 1884 he joined the crew of the coasting ship SS Clifton Grove.

In December 1885 the crew, including Job, appeared in court in Berkeley, Gloucestershire, for not paying duty on foreign tobacco which they had bought for themselves in London; the tobacco was confiscated from the men, no penalty inflicted, and they were set at liberty.  Job was in possession of only 4oz[1].

I lost track of Job after that, although if he stayed on the Clifton Grove I saw it mentioned a few times as it seemed to literally get in a lot of scrapes.

The Shields Daily Gazette of 09 August 1887 reported that en route from Llanelly [maybe via Newport] to Rochester with coals she arrived in Portland where she needed condenser and air pump repairs[2].

Late on the evening of 23 August 1887 the Clifton Grove was involved in a fatal collision on the River Avon with a stone-carrying barge called the Sarah Ann near the Port and Pier Railway Station; one of the barge men was drowned.[3][4]

27 July 1888 the SS Clifton Grove grounded on the flat of the Eish Strand and their re-float was ‘assisted’ by salvagers – whose authority to do this was hotly contested – and who were awarded £2 in Falmouth Borough Police Court in fees to be shared amongst them rather than the salvage fees they claimed of £200[5].

The year after that, in September 1889, she grounded in Trouville [Normandy, France] but was docked and found undamaged[6].

On 21 February 1891 it was reported about the SS Clifton Grove that on Thursday [12th February] “A Dangerous Reef in the Solway – The master of the SS Clifton Grove, bound from Llanelly to Workington, reports that whilst proceeding up the Solway Firth on Thursday morning at seven o’clock, engines dead slow, tide six hours ebb, his vessel suddenly took the ground on Mossbay Bank, a dangerous ridge of rocks running north and south of the Firth for a considerable distance, and remained stranded one hour and a half, the vessel making a quantity of water. This reef is very dangerous and misleading to mariners; more especially on very high spring tides, when the tide ebbs for a considerable distance, thereby leaving very little water on the ridge. It is suggested that a buoy should be fixed to indicate the position of the reef, which should also be marked on the chart with the correct soundings at high and low water during spring and neap tides.” [7]

On 27 and 28 February the Board of Trade held an inquiry “into the circumstances attending the stranding of the British Steamship “CLIFTON GROVE,” of Bristol, on or near Moss Bay Patch, near Workington, on or about the 12th February 1891.” And found “the stranding was caused by the negligent navigation of Mr. Edward Morgans, the master of the “Clifton Grove,” in that he allowed the vessel to proceed in thick weather in close proximity to the land without taking proper means to ascertain from time to time the exact position of the vessel, by taking soundings and by verifying the distance she had run. The Court finds the master in default, and suspend his certificate, No. 97,914, for six calendar months from this date. The Court also finds the managing owner, Mr. W. H. Butler, to blame, for the undermanning of the ship.”[8]

In October 1895 it was reported that the “Clifton Grove of Bristol, bound for Chatham with a cargo of coals has been detained in the entrance channel in consequence of something having gone wrong with the propeller. The steamer dried on the mud, effected repairs and proceeded to her destination on yesterday morning’s tide.” [9]

Despite searching several sites I have no idea where Job ended up, but I hope he had more luck than the SS Clifton Grove.

Words and photos © Lynne Black
First published 17 April 2017 at https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2017/04/17/richard-r-jaco/

[1] Gloucester Citizen 11 December 1885, P4, BNA via FMP http://search.findmypast.co.uk/bna/viewarticle?id=bl%2f0000325%2f18851211%2f018

[2] The Shields Daily Gazette 09 August 1887, P4, BNA via FMP http://search.findmypast.co.uk/bna/viewarticle?id=bl%2f0000287%2f18870809%2f058

[3] Cardiff Times 27 August 1887, P5, BNA via FMP: http://search.findmypast.co.uk/bna/viewarticle?id=bl%2f0000921%2f18870827%2f086

[4] Western Daily Press 24 August 1887, P5, BNA via FMP: http://search.findmypast.co.uk/bna/viewarticle?id=bl%2f0000264%2f18870824%2f019

[5] Cornishman 09 August 1888, P5, BNA via FMP http://search.findmypast.co.uk/bna/viewarticle?id=bl%2f0000331%2f18880809%2f052

[6] Shields Daily Gazette 26 September 1889, P4, BNA via FMP http://search.findmypast.co.uk/bna/viewarticle?id=bl%2f0000287%2f18890926%2f035

[7] Carlisle Express and Examiner 21 February 1891, P5, BNA via FMP: http://search.findmypast.co.uk/bna/viewarticle?id=bl%2f0001875%2f18910221%2f083

[8] Wreck Report for Clifton Grove, PortCities, http://www.plimsoll.org/resources/SCCLibraries/WreckReports/15967.asp?view=text

[9] South Wales Daily News 12 October 1895 , P7, BNA via FMP: http://search.findmypast.co.uk/bna/viewarticle?id=bl%2f0000919%2f18951012%2f160

Charles Kelynack Jacka and Alice Bartle Horswell, the carpenter’s family who headed to Australia

Charles was the sixth of eight children of fisherman Peter Jacco and Catherine Noall Kelynack but unlike his brothers he chose to work as a carpenter rather than on the sea.  He married Alice Bartle Horswell, a mariner’s daughter who was born in Padstow but who was living in Penzance.

Alice’s mother was a farmer’s daughter called Mercy Bartle.  She was born in St Enoder parish, 33 miles up county from Penzance, south-east of Newquay.  By 1826 she was based in Penzance, aged 20, where she married sailor Henry Horswell on 2 January 1827 in Madron parish. When Alice was born later that year they baptised her in July in Padstow, where Henry’s family roots were.  It can’t have been a pleasant journey for Mercy, travelling 47 miles either very pregnant or as a new mother.

St Marys Chapel 1The young family returned to Penzance, and by 1832 were back in Penzance for the birth of their son Henry.  He was not a healthy child: he was baptised on 13 November but buried four days later in Madron, Penzance Chapelry [later Penzance St Mary]. At that time Henry Snr was master of a vessel.   Their third child, Helen/Ellen was baptised on 22 March 1834, also in Madron, Penzance Chapelry, at which time Henry’s occupation was noted as captain of a vessel.

Henry died within the next six years; the 1841 census found Mercy living in Chapel Street, Penzance, with her younger daughter Ellen.  Later that year Mercy re-married, on 6 December 1841.  Her second husband George Hall was a wool comber, son of a wheel-wright.  Mercy had shaved a few years off her age when recording her second marriage!

Together they had a son, George, born c 1844 in Penzance.  However by 30 March 1851 census Mercy is again found without her husband.  She is running a lodging house in Morrab Place Penzance, with Ellen and young George living with her. Ellen was 16 and working as a dressmaker.  Mercy died in spring 1857, aged 51.

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Image from 1851 census

In March 1851 Charles and Alice with daughter Wilmott Amelia [thanks so much to Annie for suggesting this name via a comment below this blog post]  were living 2 doors along from his sister Honor in the Fradgan, Street-An-Nowan, Newlyn.  In October they baptised their daughter Mary Jane in Paul Parish Church but sadly their first daughter was not with them much longer: in November 1852 Wilmott Amelia died and was buried back in Paul parish. The following year when their daughter Margaret was baptised in April 1853 the ceremony took place in Madron, Penzance Chaplaincy [the daughter church of Madron].

I couldn’t find them in the 1861 census so assumed they may have emigrated in the 1850s, as hints on Ancestry suggested they emigrated to Australia.

This proved to be the case as in 1859 Charles worked as a carpenter in Prahan [now an inner suburb of Melbourne] but then a young settlement which had only been surveyed for development in 1840[1].  I found a letter from him and fellow-workers in the Argus newspaper, sticking up for a fellow-worker who’d been inaccurately maligned in the paper which had stated he’d been sacked when in fact he’d got a different job for health reasons.

1859-argusletter_re-ill-colleague

Letter in The Argus, from Trove, October 1859

In March 1872 the family was grief-stricken when their younger daughter Margaret died aged only 19.  She was buried in St Kilda Cemetery and the funeral procession headed there from the family home on the High Street.[2]

As I don’t have access to the Australian Census or immigration records it was a treat to find these mentions of the family.  I had just googled ‘Charles Jaco, Australia’ and Google suggested newspaper stories on Trove http://trove.nla.gov.au/  I’d vaguely heard of Trove but had never used it before.  It’s a free online Australian archive of newspaper stories and was fantastic for confirming their stories which previously I’d come across via a ‘probable link’ death record and non-evidenced hints on Ancestry public trees.  Fortunately the name Jaco at that time in Australia was uncommon, apart from Trove search-engine suggestions of ‘Jacob’ and ‘Jacobite’.

Another, happier, story I found on Trove was a family wedding intimation: in March 1874 Mary Jane married “Robert Henry, second son of Jared Graham, Esq, Euroa”[3], and the ceremony took place in the family home on the High Street, Prahan.

The final story I found on Trove was a reference to Charles’ will in 1876, after he died in November 1876 aged 51.  Alice died three years later, in April 1879, aged 49.

Words © Lynne Black.
First published 13 March 2017 at https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2017/03/12/charles-kelynack-jaco/

[1] http://www.victorianplaces.com.au/prahran

[2] The Argus, 4 March 1872, accessed via Trove

[3] The Argus (Melbourne Vic: Wed 18 Mar 1874, accessed via Trove

 

Photo of boat entering Newlyn Harbour

William Jacka and Grace Cotton, play, school, secrets and the asylum

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Newlyn Old Harbour

William, baptised on 4 August 1819, was the fifth of Peter and Catherine Jaco’s eight children and, like his father and his two elder brothers, would make his living on the sea.

They grew up in the fishing community of Street-An-Nowan, Newlyn, in early 19th century Cornwall.  By the time he was born, eldest brother Peter was 12, and all would have spent their youth around the harbour, playing on the sand and swimming, then later helping the older boys and men by bringing the catch from the ships to the shore.  When William was 6 his brother Peter joined the Merchant Navy, and by the time William was 16 his brother Benjamin was Mate on a schooner.  His eldest sister Jane married a miner and moved away when William was 15, Peter married in April 1838 and William, aged 19, was witness at his wedding in Paul Parish Church.

The first census William was recorded on was the 1841 one, when he was 21 and living at home with his parents in the Fradgan [street area] within Street-An-Nowan.  His sister Honor married when he was 23, but she stayed locally, also living in the Fradgan.

In March 1848, when William was 28, he married local girl Grace Cotton and she must have been blooming as they had their first son William 4-5 months later, who was baptised that autumn, again in Paul Parish Church.  Grace was the daughter of fisherman Charles Cotton and Deborah Pendar, but Deborah must have been widowed when Grace was still young because at the age of 5 Grace was admitted to Penzance Dispensary and noted as a widow’s child.  When Grace met William she had been working as a servant.

Photo of Trinity Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Newlyn

Trinity Wesleyan Methodist Chapel with hall, Newlyn, Cornwall

Their second son was born two years later and named John Cotton Jacca.  Unlike his elder brother he was baptised a Methodist, at the Wesleyan Methodist Chapel just at the top of the road.

At the time of the 1851 census it appears William was away fishing on the Abner and Grace and baby William at home had her mother Deborah living with them.  I don’t know why baby John Cotton wasn’t recorded; maybe he was asleep in a crib and they forgot about him!

The year after that their next known child was a daughter: Mary.  Mary was born by late summer 1854 and was and was baptised on 8 November of that year, this time in the new Newlyn St Peter church just along the Coombe river in Street-An-Nowan. Perhaps Mary was a sickly baby, for she had died by the time she was 4 months old and was buried on 17 November 1854 in the new grounds up at Paul Cemetery.

In 1855 William’s father Peter died, and the following year his mother Catherine also died.

In 1856 William and Grace had a second daughter, whom they also called Mary.  Mary wasn’t baptised until she was 2 years old in 1858, again in Newlyn St Peter’s parish church.

William and Grace’s children were possibly the first generation to go to school during the week, although attending school wasn’t obligatory until the 1870 Education Act.  However prior to 1854 when a Wesleyan Day School was built in Newlyn, children attending school had to head up the hill to Paul Churchtown where a school had stood on the Green across from the church since 1825.  That National School at Paul was the one pictured in Elizabeth Forbes’ painting School Is Out which was completed in 1889.   [Incidentally a lady called Mrs Enid Hall who lived across from my Granny in Newlyn always proudly told us the boy crying in the photo was her father, although I have seen that same model claimed by other Newlyn familes!]

In May 1860 Grace’s mother Deborah died and was buried in Paul parish.

By the April 1861 census the family had moved house within Street-An-Nowan and were living on Foundry Lane, where they stayed for several years, and where they were living when their son Richard was born; he was baptised in April 1865 in St Peter’s Church. Richard was deaf from childhood, and was to live with his parents and work as a tailor.

The 1871 census found the family living in Strick’s Court, which I believe was near the Wesleyan Methodist Chapel in Street-An-Nowan.  In 1876 the first of their children to marry, John Cotton Jacka, married fisherman’s daughter Elizabeth Strick but I think the name was just coincidence.  John and Elizabeth had their first child, Mary Jane Jaco, in 1877 and Elsie in February 1882, followed eventually by John (1884), Grace (1890) and William (1892).

Their daughters and grand-daughters went into shop-work.  John, the elder of their two sons, decided to make his fortunate in the USA.  He emigrated to the US on 3 June 1914 on the White Star Line’s Oceanic after booking via a Penzance agent called Messrs Ludlow and Sons.

1914jun11_cornishtelegraph_johnjackaemig

Cornish Telegraph, 11 June 1914, from BNA on FMP

The Cornishman’s Cornish Folk in New York: Letter from Sid Blake feature reports names of those passing though Blake’s Cornish Arms Hotel which was found at 443 West 23rd Street.  On 25 June his column reported “John Jacka, from Newlyn, to Detroit’ had stayed there.  However John ended up in Akron, Summit County, Ohio, USA, where his dream came to an end when he caught Spanish Flu and died on 30 October 1918; he was buried in Glendale Cemetery and his headstone is pictured on Find-A-Grave.  I can’t identify the story of youngest child William who perhaps also emigrated or died in infancy.

By 1881 William and Grace were living in Orchard Place [where my own family lived many decades later] with William, Mary and Richard still at home with them.

Their net-maker daughter Mary Jacka married in 1882; her husband was fisherman William Batten.

William Jnr [William and Grace’s son] married Lavinia Hall in late 1883. Lavinia’s parents, farmer/ agricultural labourer William and Ann Hall, had lived close to Land’s End in St Leven and Sennen parishes and she was the third daughter in large family.  Her story was a bit confusing at first, but after following all the census records through the decades the truth emerged.

In the 1871 census 30-year-old Lavinia had a 7-year-old brother listed called Frederick, although ‘their father’ was 70 and widowed; this was a pretence continued in the 1881 census despite William Hall’s death in the years between.  In the 1891 census, with Frederick listed as head of the family, he refers to Lavinia as his mother and William Jaco as his step-father.  Also in that 1891 census Lavinia had shaved some years off her age, appearing only 6 rather than the actual 12 years older than her husband.

Frederick had married Mary and was working as a cabinet maker although later he became a trader of glass and china.  He moved by 1911 to Torpoint, which is just the Cornish side of the Tamar, across from Plymouth in Devon.  There he continued as a dealer with his wife and two of his daughters assisting in the business. By that time Frederick and Mary had had nine children, of whom 6 were still alive.  Perhaps a clue to his mystery father was the fact that Frederick called his son Phillip Scadden Hall – there were many Scaddens in West Penwith.  The other five surviving children were all girls: Ethel, Lillian, Florence, Violet and Marion.

Lavinia died in 1900.  William died many years later in 1925, in the Penzance area.

Grace Jacka died in spring 1888, aged 64, and was buried in Paul Cemetery on 22 April.

In 1891 William was living with his daughter Mary and son-in-law William Batten.  William’s youngest (deaf) child Richard, who was working as a tailor, was also in the household and they were living in Florence Terrace, Tolcarne.  That is just over the small river Combe from Street-An-Nowan, and is another area which housed many of my extended family over the decades of the 19th century. William had retired from fishing by then and lived on until 1893, when he was buried on 15 March in Paul.

Mary’s story didn’t end happily: in the 1890s she developed a mental illness and was moved to Bodmin Lunatic Asylum 50 miles away [which I believe is Cornwall Lunatic Asylum / St Lawrence’s Lunatic Asylum].  There she lived out the rest of her days until she died on 7 April 1906.  In the 1901 census she had been listed as a pauper patient and a lunatic.  I don’t know why she was listed as a pauper as at that time her drift fisherman husband William Batten was living with his mother in Street-An-Nowan, but all the evidence points to that being Mary Batten nee Jacka.

In 1909 her widower William remarried; his second wife was Catherine Treleven and they lived together in 1911 in Newlyn, with William still fishing.

William and Grace’s youngest child, tailor Richard, had died in spring 1908; their line was carried on through their son John Cotton Jaco.

Census, BM&D info acquired from: Ancestry, FindMyPast including access to the British Newspaper Archive, Cornwall FHS, Cornwall Online Parish Clerks, West Penwith Resources.

Words and photos © Lynne Black
First published 25 February 2017: https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2017/02/25/william-jacka/.