Tag Archives: Yorkshire

#52Ancestors #50 – Thomas Henderson Brown – the best man and the bride’s sister

Thomas Henderson Brown, born 1881, was the fifth of six brothers and he’s the final one I’m featuring in my blog.  The sons of Joseph and Alice Brown, in order, were JJ Hedley, Michael, James Denholm, William Hindmarsh, Thomas and Albert.

Photo of a Brown family wedding

Brown family wedding, possibly Thomas & Clara’s wedding in 1919

In 1910, at the age of 28, Thomas was a witness at his younger brother Albert’s wedding to Miss Fanny Swallow.  Fanny was the third of six sisters: Amy, Ethel, Fanny, Clara, Ida and Elsie.  Ten years later in December 1919, by then aged nearly 40, he married Fanny’s younger sister Clara.

My Dad and I are currently playing photo detective with a couple of wedding photos. I’m sure Thomas’ older brother (my great-grandfather) Michael is the man in the black hat – he was obviously very fond of that hat as he’s wearing it in other photos!  So there we go, another photo of Michael, and also perhaps my great-grandmother Sallie next to him, although in most of her photos she looks wistful rather than happy so I’m not 100% sure.

And I think that Thomas may be the groom, although I would appreciate views of any historical clothes experts out there in case it’s actually the 1910 wedding of Albert and Fanny.  Although two of the men are in military uniform they were reservists so would have had uniforms before the war.

52 Ancestors logoLike Albert Thomas worked in the clothing industry, unlike warehouseman Albert, Thomas worked as a clothier’s cloth cutter.

I don’t know what happened to them after their wedding, no clue!

© Text copyright Lynne Black 14 December 2014

First published: https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2014/12/10/thomas-henderson-brown/

#52Ancestors #46 William Hindmarsh Brown – facing the tiniest of foes

Photo of Bermuda at sunset, photo by DPA Watts, Morguefiles

Bermuda at sunset, photo by DPA Watts, Morguefiles

Like his father Joseph and older brothers Michael and Hedley, William had been drawn to the military life.

Although William was born circa October 1879 in Byker, Newcastle Upon Tyne, he’d moved to Leeds with his family before the age of 12.  His father Joseph Brown was a soldier and later a carpet fitter; his mother Alice, nee Hedley, had worked as a domestic servant before marriage.

In his teens William joined the Volunteer Battalion of the West Yorkshire Regiment.  Many of his brothers were clerks but William’s education was noted as ‘2nd class’ [nice!] and perhaps the idea of sitting in an office wasn’t appealing.  He must have enjoyed his time in the Regiment as on 10 September 1897, in Halifax, he enlisted with the Royal Engineers and in early 1898 was posted as a sapper.

William was a fairly tall lad of 5’ 8½”, of fair complexion with brown hair and blue eyes.  Intriguingly he’s recorded as having scars on both knees.

William was posted to Bermuda, where he arrived in December 1898.  His records (found via FindMyPast) show him as receiving a slight injury to his right hand which probably frustrated him an engineer and soldier.

However it wasn’t that which defeated him in November 1902, it was something still feared by millions: typhoid.

We have a family record of his memorial card which was handed down through his brother Michael’s family to my dad, William’s great-nephew.  It reads:

In Loving Memory of
William Hindmarsh Brown
(3rd Company, Royal Engineers,)
The beloved son of Joseph and Alice Brown
Who Departed this life, Thursday November 20th, 1902 Aged 23 years 

The last post has sounded:
the solder sleeps
Till the night is ended
And the morning breaks

52 ancestors logoWilliam was interred in one of the cemeteries at St George’s parish in Bermuda, info on these available at http://bermuda-online.org/britishmilitarygravesbda.htm and http://bermuda-online.org/britarmy.htm

© Lynne Black, 17 November 2014
First published: https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2014/11/17/william-hindmarsh-brown/

#52Ancestors #45 BSM Michael Brown, Inspector of Postmen

Sgt Michael Brown c1906

Sgt Michael Brown c1906

Michael Brown is my great-grandfather.  My Dad knew him, and was evacuated to his house during the war where he recollects Michael would listen intently to the war news on the radio, but Michael died long before my time.

He was the son of Joseph Brown and Alice nee Hedley and was born in 1876, the second of six brothers.  These were Hedley, James, William, Thomas and Albert and four of these six I know to have been in the army. All were born in Newcastle Upon Tyne, Northumberland, but at some point in the late 1880s the family moved to Leeds, West Yorkshire.

Michael was a sharp-shooter in the army cadets and we have a collection of newspaper reports such as this one about inter-Brigade shooting competitions.

Shooting match report, 4 November 1899, Yorkshire Post

Shooting match report, 4 November 1899, Yorkshire Post

He became a reservist and served in the 69th (West Riding) Field Regiment, Royal Artillery.  I have a huge amount of information about Michael’s military career thanks to my dad who’s doing a fantastic job learning about the various horrific battles and near-death situations Michael survived.

Hopefully we’ll get it made up into a book, so I’ll not go into too much detail.

Image of paragraph listing DCM information

Information about Michael Brown’s award of the DCM

However I will just share this:  Michael was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal in 1918 “when the battery came into action direct from a very long and trying march, he displayed conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty.”  Sadly the medals are no longer in our possession, they were sold at Christies as part of a package which included a photo of Michael marching at the head of his battery.  Maybe the photo will suddenly display on a WW1 website or magazine.

My great-grandmother, Sarah E Halliday

My great-grandmother, Sarah E Halliday

Michael’s other, civilian, life-long profession was that of postman.  By the age of 16 in 1891 he was working as a telegraph boy in Leeds and by 1901 was the town postman.

He married Sarah Emmaline Halliday in 1902. ‘Sallie’ had been born in Leeds but was descended from a Gateshead family. They had one child, William ‘Bill’ Halliday Brown, in 1905.

In 1911 the census records his occupation as “Town Postman Acting As Asst Inspector Of Telegraph Messengers”.  After the war they continued to live in Leeds and by 1931 when Bill married, Michael was the Inspector of Postmen.  In 1936, or just after, he and his fellow post office workers were awarded the King’s Silver Jubilee Medal.

52 Ancestors logoMichael was clearly very loyal to his regiment as in April 1939 he obtained permission to open a recruiting office in Roundhay Road to recruit to the 69th (West Riding) Field Regiment R.A. (T.A.).

Michael died in London in 1951, a year after his wife Sallie; they had been staying with Bill and Phyllis who’d been taking care of them.

© Text copyright Lynne Black 12 November 2014
First published: https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2014/11/12/michael-brown/

#52Ancestors #40 Miss Mary S Young, Victorian scholar, Edwardian Head-teacher

Photo of Tom, Dora, Marion, Lizzie, Tom, and Mary Young

Tom, Dora, Marion, Lizzie, Tom, and Mary Young

Mary Sarah Young was born in 1867, the fourth daughter, and fifth child of seven of Hannah Halliday and George Shields Young.

Although born in Gateshead in County Durham, her family moved to Yorkshire when she was young and she grew up in Shipley.

Mary came from a well-educated family.  Several of her older sisters had been governesses or worked in schools, and at the age of 24 in 1891 Mary herself was working in Shipley as a School Assistant Mistress.

However she had vanished from Yorkshire in the 1901 census and by broadening my search I found her living down in Okehampton, Devon with her mother Hannah and two sisters Marion and Edith. Mary was single and her family all widows; Mary was the only one in the household working, and by this time she’d had a promotion to Schoolmistress.

52 Ancestors logoIt can’t have been too long after that before she and mother Hannah had moved on again, to Pembrokeshire.  Her youngest sister Edith accompanied them but didn’t stay that long; she had fallen for a surveyor from Okehampton and they married in Pembrokeshire in 1905 before moving back down to Devon.

Her sister Dora came up from her home in Essex to visit in October 1908, but shockingly died during her visit, leaving a husband and 3 young children.

Mary S Young's 1911 census entry

Mary S Young’s 1911 census entry

By 1911 Mary had been appointed as a Head Teacher of an elementary school owned by Pembrokeshire County Education Authority.  She and her mother were living in Rhydberth, Tenby.

The Tenby Junior School website tells me:  “Tenby Council School was built in 1915 while the First World War was at its height. It was officially opened in June 1916 by Mr S.B. Sketch, J.P., C.C., Chairman of the Education Committee. The school was situated in Greenhill Road and pupils came from the School which had previously been held beneath the Methodist Chapel in Warren Street, which was subsequently demolished in the 1980s. The Headmaster at this time was Mr J Howells.”  Given Mary’s religious background, I’m wondering whether she taught at the Warren Street Chapel.  Pembrokeshire Record Office website has some potential for archive material if I want to follow it up at a later date.

Her sister Marion remarried at the start of the war, a John Ogden, a widower, back in Yorkshire in Keighley.

Eight years later in 1919, after the first world war which took her nephew George Shields Young, Mary is also found back up in Yorkshire, listed on the electoral roll in the School House in Oldfield, where she was still living in 1926.

I googled ‘Oldfield School West Yorkshire’ and it came up with the website of the Oldfield Primary School which has a lovely image of an old school building on the home page.  It’s been taken on a frosty morning and I can just picture Mary wrapped up well walking up the path to the door.  I rang the school and the secretary said that she was actually speaking from the School House, which I really loved.

By 1929, aged 62, she has moved to Harrogate, Yorkshire, where she lived for the rest of her life.

She died, aged 75, in the midst of the second world war, on Christmas Day 1942.  In her will left effects of £871 5s 1d [£25K in 2005 money] to her brother and her nephew.

#52Ancestors #39 the lovelorn Miss Edith Young

52 Ancestors logoEdith Hannah Young, the youngest of seven known children of George Shields Young and Hannah Halliday, was born c 1873 in Gateshead into a comfortably well-off Methodist family.

When she was 5 her father’s business pottery partnership was dissolved and soon after that they moved away to Horton in Yorkshire.  Three summers later George died, aged 46.

Things may have been tough for a while, but ten years later, when she 18, the 1891 census records Edith as a secretary at the Bradford School of Music; with her education and the family’s interest in music I hope she was happy there.

However by 1901 her circumstances had changed drastically. She, her mother Hannah and two of her sisters, Marion and Mary, were all living down in Okehampton, Devon, 300 miles away.  I suspect they moved when Mary got a teaching post, but in that space of ten years Edith had also been married and widowed.  Her late husband, Mr Rowe, is a mystery; I’ve made a variety of searches on both Ancestry and FindMyPast but nothing is obvious without the purchase of birth certificates (with no guarantee of success) which I will only do if I come up on the Lottery. [I won a pound on a £1 scratch-card this week – breaking even is a rare treat so I’m not holding my breath!]

I couldn’t find Edith in the 1911 census with her mother and sister (by then in Pembrokeshire), so I started searching for a possible second marriage for her.  Lo and behold I discovered Edith Hannah Rowe marries an Okehampton man, Francis Worden, in Pembrokeshire in 1905.  Had they been pining away without each other?  Lots of Edwardian sighing going on until he came up to marry her and sweep her back to Okehampton where he worked as an architect & surveyor?

1911 Census names of Francis and Edith Worden

1911 Census names of Francis and Edith Worden

Fitting in with the 100 year rule (with which I quite agree) I can’t find any info on them until 1939. By that year Francis had retired and they were living down in Bude, Cornwall, as located via Kelly’s Directories.  Edith died in April 1942 in Stratton, Cornwall; Francis died later, in 1957.  There are other Wordens in Stratton so perhaps Francis had family there to share his last days.

© Text copyright Lynne Black 29 September 2014
First published: https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2014/09/29/edith-young/

#52Ancestors #38 George Shields Young – bright promise and the looming clouds of war

George Shields Young, 1893-1916

George Shields Young, 1893-1916, reproduced with permission from Queen’s College Oxford’s Liber Vitae Reginensium

George S Young was the grandson of his namesake George Shields Young and Hannah Halliday, through their oldest son Thomas Halliday Young and his wife Margaret J Thompson.  Born in Bradford, Yorkshire, in 1893, he was the second of three children, with an older sister Margaret and a younger sister Helen.

His father Thomas was a merchant’s cashier who seemed to have done quite well.  Maybe George inherited a talent for figures as after seven years at Bradford School for Boys he won a scholarship for the Queen’s College, Oxford where he read Mathematics.

While I knew of George when researching his grandmother’s story, I hadn’t intended to research his life in any depth as I thought he may have children still alive, and I don’t generally dig down more than one generation as it sometimes feels a bit intrusive.

I discovered his story by accident when trying to find a date of death for his uncle (also a George Shields Young, his dad’s younger brother). The search engines flagged up a military record and I checked it out.  I did a bit more work then found an obituary which named his parents – and found out they were Thomas and Margaret rather than the expected Hannah and George.

The obituary mentioned that ‘my’ George had received a BA from Queen’s College. I was amazed and really pleased for him.  His well-educated family must have been so proud of him, the first in the family to go to university.

52 Ancestors logoIt seemed so unfair to find out about his greatest achievement whilst reading about his family’s greatest loss that it really made me angry.  It was strange, feeling anger and grief for someone I’d only ‘met’ less than 2 days before.

After graduation George had gone back to Bradford and enlisted into the Prince of Wales’s Own (West Yorkshire Regiment), 6th Battalion, as a Private.  He was posted to France where he died, less than 18 months after graduating, on 29 November 1916 of his wounds.  He’s buried in Warlincourt Halte British Cemetery, Saulty, France.

I was curious about George’s time at University so I googled Queen’s College Oxford war records and discovered their Roll of Service which gave me some information:

“1911 Young,* G. S., B.A. (June 21, 1915). Pte. 6th W. Yorkshire Regt. France. Died on Nov. 29, 1916, of wounds received in action.”  The asterisk denotes membership of the University Contingent of the Officers’ Training Corps prior to 1915.

After that I looked up Queen’s home page and discovered they have an archivist, Michael Riordan, for St. John’s and The Queen’s Colleges.  We spoke on the phone and he was kind enough to look up the subject of George’s BA for me. He checked George’s biography in their Liber Vitae Reginensium which also included a portrait of George (above).

He also discovered some notes written shortly after George started at Queen’s:

“Young, George Shields.
born 9th April 1893 at Bradford.
Son of T.H. Young of 1 Ambleside Avenue, Bradford.
Educated at Bradford Grammar School 7 years.
Entered College October 1911.
Hastings Exhibitioner (Honorary Scholar) (Mathematics); elected December 1910.
Hon. Mods & Greats. I.C.S. Prob Physics & Mod Langs.
Knows a little Fr. & German. Will row, but light, q.2. 2nd 15, no cricket
Has joined Terrs. Plays a little but doesn’t sing. Congregationalist.”

Michael explained that ICS was the Indian Civil Service and this almost certainly means that this was his intended career, which was a popular choice amongst graduates at this time.

But it was not to be.

This week there was an email from FindMyPast about adding membership of Lives of World War One to the subscription package.  I have tried it to search for George, but didn’t find it particularly easy or intuitive to use.  However I will go back and fill in the information for George.  I think I’ll also complete the profiles, if I can find them, for three other Queen’s graduates, Warren, Wolfe and Collins, whose information was also on the same page of the Liber Vitae Reginensium as George, and were lost in action or to illness.

First published 27 September 2014: https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2014/09/27/george-s-young/

#52Ancestors #37 Hannah Halliday – entrepreneurial sons, educated daughters

I recently took advantage of a half-price subscription with FindMyPast and have been having a fascinating couple of weeks finding out about my Northumberland and Durham ancestors.

I last used FindMyPast briefly over a year ago, too far back to remember how the old search engine worked.  I’ve heard a lot of negative comments about the new set up, but as I was coming to it effectively fresh I’ve found it has worked well.  Part of this appreciation is that they have the record collections I was after, but it has also come up with suggestions of a few newspaper announcements about the family, intimations and also one about a business partnership finishing.

I’m finding it helpful having two sites to work between (currently FMP and Ancestry).  Previously I’d shared sites with a friend, I paid for Ancestry and she paid for Genes Reunited and it’s really helpful doing that, one can point to clues on another, and each have different specialist record sets.

So this week, thanks to the hard transcribing work of the Durham and Northumberland FHSoc I’ve found a 19th century branch of my family with many strong educated women.  I’ll feature a few of her family members over the next couple of weeks.

Hannah Young, nee Halliday

Hannah Young, nee Halliday

And I’ll start with Mrs Hannah Young, nee Halliday, the aunt of Sarah E Halliday who featured in my previous post. Hannah is my G-G-G-Aunt.

Hannah was the second child and eldest daughter of Thomas and Jane Halliday. Altogether I’ve found 6 brothers and sisters for her.  Thomas was a soap agent and travelled around for his work.

Born on 10 November 1836 in Gateshead, Hannah was baptised a month later in Methodist New Connexion denomination chapel.  She lived in Gateshead until she was at least 16. Although she married aged 21 in early 1857 in Leeds, West Yorkshire, I suspect that may have been her fiancé’s  workplace/home because soon after the wedding they were both found in Gateshead.

Her husband was George Shields Young and I’m so glad he was, as having the middle name Shields (after his mother) has been invaluable identifying his own children and grandchildren.  George was an agent and later recorded as an earthenware manufacturer.

Photo of Tom, Dora, Lizzie, Mary and Marion Young

Tom, Dora, Lizzie, Mary and Marion Young

They settled down and had their first child, Dora, 10 months after the wedding in Gateshead, Low Fell, County Durham. Daughter Marion arrived in summer 1860, with George recorded in the census the next spring as a commercial clerk and dealer.  Four more children followed: Lizzie in Newcastle in 1862, Thomas Halliday back in Gateshead (1864), Mary Sarah (1867) and George Shields (1870).  By April 1871 George Snr was working as an earthenware manufacturer in Leeds, but Edith Hannah was born back in Gateshead in 1873.

In 1877, four years after the birth of George and Hannah’s youngest child Edith, Edith’s oldest sister Dora got married at the age of 18 to George Rollet with Hannah’s first grandchild Norman arriving in Thorne, Yorkshire in 1878 with Ethel following in 1879 and Maud Hannah early in 1881.

Hannah’s father Thomas Halliday died on 22 December in 1877.

Shields Daily Gazette, 21 January 1878, copyright FindMyPast

Shields Daily Gazette, 21 January 1878, copyright FindMyPast

In 1878 George and his business partner formally dissolved their business partnership and the April 1881 census records him as a bookseller.  Only four months after that George died, in Bradford where he and Hannah were living.  His estate was worth £259 8s, the equivalent of £12,531.61 in 2005 money.

Another grand-daughter, Dora Rollett arrived in 1882, but there was more sadness in 1883, when young Dora’s older sister Maud Hannah died in Hunslet, Leeds, aged about 2.

The next time I encounter Hannah it’s 1889 when her son Thomas Halliday Young marries Margaret Jane Thompson.  [Thomas and Margaret have their first child, Margaret, in 1890, Hannah’s fourth known grandchild, followed by another George Shields in 1893 and Helen in 1898, all in Bradford.]

In January 1891, Hannah’s mother Jane Halliday died.  Jane left Hannah a gold watch and half-share of her personal effects in her will, of which Hannah, her brother Thomas and sister Sarah Ann were executers.

Hannah’s second daughter Marion married in 1895 to a mysterious Mr Joslin, of whom I know nothing apart from his surname, which I suspect may have been mis-spelt at some point.  She was widowed and married her second husband John Ogden, a widower, in September 1914 in Keighley, Yorkshire.

Hannah’s third child, Lizzie, is a bit of a mystery. The only child born in Newcastle, she wasn’t with her parents for the 1871 or 1881 census so I feared she’d died young.  However then I found her in Shipley, Yorkshire, in 1891 working as a governess.  And once I’d found that she was staying in 1881 with the Rollett family it helped both solve the mystery of Lizzie’s missing years, and confirm I had correctly identified Dora Young’s husband.  In 1881 the census, staying with Dora in Nottinghamshire, Lizzie was again working as a governess.  But I lose track of her after the 1991 census.

Mary Sarah Young, her fifth known, child was a teacher, and will be the subject of a later blog post.

Hannah’s second son (6th child) George Shields Halliday had been born in Gateshead in 1870 but died young, aged only 17 in 1887.

52 Ancestors logo

Youngest daughter Edith Hannah also got married, to a Mr Rowe, but I have little information about him.  I do know however that she was widowed and married again and I’ll also write about her another week.

By 1901 there had been a dramatic change of location – Hannah was living down in Okehampton, Devon, with daughters Marion [Joslin], Mary Sarah Young and Edith [Rowe].

They were visited in October 1908 by oldest sister Dora [Rollett] but shockingly Dora died during her visit, leaving widower George, son Norman and two daughters Ethel and Dora who continued to live in Essex, where they were living by 1901.

By 1911 Hannah and Mary Sarah Young had moved on again to Pembrokeshire, the first time I’ve found any of my family at all in Wales.

The strange thing is, I have all this information about Hannah Young and her descendants, but I don’t actually know for sure when and where Hannah died. She was 74 by the time of the 1911 census. 74 doesn’t seem very old to me, living in the 21st century, I have family older than that, but it must have been a good old age then.  But now, by broadening my searches and my time frames, I’ve found a Hannah Young who died in Gateshead in 1933, at the grand old age of 96.

I so hope that was my Hannah, my G-G-G-Aunt, it would just seem fitting for a woman whose family had been so independent, one of the most educated with children – daughters more remarkably – travelling round for work and establishing themselves by independent means.  I hope that her mind stayed with her until the end as intelligence and education was such a defining feature of her family.

Hannah certainly had a fascinating life, and I love that I know what she looks like.  I also know, from the contents of her mother’s will, what she would have seen as she went to visit her parents Thomas and Jane Halliday: the suite, the sewing machine, the black marble clock and of course the treasured gold watch Jane passed down to her dear oldest daughter.

© Text copyright Lynne Black 21 September 2014
First published: https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2014/09/21/hannah-halliday/

#52Ancestors #36 Sarah E Halliday, Yorkshire beauty

My great-grandmother, Sarah E Halliday, c1900

My great-grandmother, Sarah E Halliday

My great-grandmother Sarah ‘Sallie’ E Halliday was born in 1863 in Leeds, the youngest child of Thomas Halliday and Mary Ann Howe.

In her day Sallie was considered a great beauty.  Her father, a commissioning agent, seems to have done alright for himself as he was able to provide her with the opportunity to enjoy music, a talent she inherited from her mother and in turn passed down to her own family.

The 1901 census finds her as a tailoress, sewing edges.  The following year she married my great-grandfather Michael Brown at the Church of St John the Evangelist in Leeds.  Michael was a postman and army reservist who later fought in some of the major battles of the first world war and kept his love of the army all his life.

They had a son together 3 years later, William, who inherited his mother’s talent for music but not his father’s fighting skills, as a near-miss with a grenade shows (when one falls in your trench you’re best throwing it out the trench, not high up in the air directly above you!).

52ancestorsSallie and Michael lived on for the rest of the lives in Leeds, Michael working his way up in the Post Office.  Sallie died in 1950.

© Text copyright Lynne Black 5 September 2014
First published: https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2014/08/24/sarah-halliday/

#52Ancestors #9: Rewinding 300 years: Jonas Wilson

In my last post I featured my grand-mother Phyllis Broadbent. I do appreciate she’s an ancestor too, but as she’s in my heart she’s a person, known family rather than an ancestor. To me, ancestors imply unknown people, who lived so long back that I’m lucky if I ever find out the names of the women.

So it’s from my most recent to my most ancient ancestors that I head this week.  After doing very little genealogy work the last two weeks, with booking travel and accommodation and then attending Who Do You Think You Are Live, I got stuck in again yesterday, my first day off work after the show.

After the daunting army of Broadbents I faced in the 19th century, I found out yesterday that they suddenly thinned out.

My 6G-grandfather Jonas Wilson lived in various small villages south-west of Bradford: Illingworth, Ovenden and later Great Horton.  He was the son of John Wilson, baptised 28 December 1711 In Illingworth, and his daughter my 5G-Grandmother Eliz was baptised in October 1740 in Bradford St Peter Church (Bradford Cathedral). She later married into the Broadbent family by marrying James Broadbent, my 5G grandfather.

I’m still to find out about John Wilson.  The records are getting so irregular, so badly scrawled, that it’s getting so much harder to be confident, plus Latin words are starting to creep in, a look towards a language change to which I’d not given a single thought until Jackie Depelle flagged it up at WDYTYALive last week.

52 ancestors logoI found a marriage record on 6 July 1727 which I think could be ‘my’ Jonas Wilson’s given that his first child arrived in 1732.  However it took place in Wakefield, approx 20 miles from all other known events in his life. He was a groomsman, and if he worked with horses then perhaps he’d gone there for his work and met a local girl…  Hmmm.

So plenty more work to be done to find out about his life, and that of his father John. But I’ve now gone more than 300 years back in time and that’s fantastic!

And today I’ve discovered a great website, from GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, called A Vision of Britain Through Time. Fantastic, wish I’d discovered it a couple of months back when starting out with my Yorkshire family.  It’s meant for 1801-2001 but even for getting an idea of a place it was really good, helpful and calmly presented.

#52Ancestors #7 Martha Waddington – Daughter, wife, mother, grocer

Rhoda and Martha Broadbent

Rhoda and Martha Broadbent

My great-great-grandmother Martha Waddington was another Yorkshirewoman.  One of ten children, she was born in Baildon Green & baptised in February 1827 in Guisely St Oswald Church in Yorkshire.

Martha married William Broadbent, a coal miner, in Birstall St Peter when she was 20 and together they had 8 children; I’ve previously written about their eldest daughter Rhona.  Rhona was an inspiration for me when getting back into genealogy, see Rhoda – a smile from history, and I discovered she hadn’t had the young death we’d initially feared, see What Rhoda did next .  I’m descended through Martha & William’s sixth child Ernest Broadbent, born 1860.

By 1871 she and William were living in Leeds where he was working as an iron stone miner; by 1881 he was still a miner, but by 1884 he had become a grocer, based on Freehold Street.  A year after that, when William died, she took over the running of the shop.

52ancestorsAlthough illiterate when she married William back in 1847, by 1887 she had taught herself to write, or at least to sign her name, for when she re-married in 1887 she wrote her own name in the register. And again on the register I saw Rhona’s signature – obviously a very close mother and daughter.

Her new husband had a unique name – such a gift after trying to tease out the threads of the Broadbent families – Pybus Allison.  He too had been married previously and widowed; he too was a store-keeper retired before he and Martha married.

Pybus, as well as having an unusual name, had an usual profession, being an omnibus and milk & groceries proprietor.  In 1870 he was tried for manslaughter but acquitted unanimously when a woman died after a wheel came off his omnibus.

Pybus set up an irrevocable will which did not include Martha’s descendents.  Later they tried unsuccessfully to revoke this so that her children from her first marriage may benefit. She only outlived him by two years and died in 1908; I hope her family took care of her financially in her last years.

Next I’d like to find out about Martha’s parents – they’ve not been as easy to track down as some of the other sides of the family, so if you’re a cousin of mine, I’d love to hear from you!

©2013 photos ©2014 words copyright Lynne Black
Original post at:https://starryblackness.wordpress.com/2014/02/13/52ancestors-7-martha-waddington-daughter-wife-mother-grocer/