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Topics - Aulus

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Staffordshire / What church would Derby End inhabitants have used?
« on: Friday 27 July 07 19:07 BST (UK)  »
I'm about as far as I can get with civil registration, so I'm wondering what parish records I should be looking at for ancestors from the Derby End-Rowley Regis area?  Are any of the records on-line, or do I have to annoy the kind souls in Staffordshire Lookups and/or book myself a holiday to sit in the records office? Which records office would it be, by the way?

The two from whom I'm descended are Henry SMITH (b. c. 1835-1837, Derby Hand) and Priscilla (a.k.a. Zillah) STEVENTON (b. 25 Nov 1838 Derby End).  They married 9 Jun 1856 in Netherton Parish Church.

Henry's father was another Henry SMITH, who had died before his son married Priscilla.  No idea about the mother.  I think the younger Henry had at least two siblings: Thomas SMITH and Josiah SMITH, but especially Thomas is a bit circumstantial.

Priscilla/Zillah was the daughter of George STEVENTON (b. c. 1795, d. 24 Apr 1869) and Ann SHAW(aka Mary Ann SHAW) (b. c. 1795, d. 13 Apr 1868, marr. 24 May 1818 Old Swinford according to Worcs. Marriages)

I've not been able to identify Mary Ann SHAW's parents, so that's one I'm going to be looking for.

George STEVENTON was likely (assuming my identification with records on the IGI and Worcs.  Marriages is right) the son of Joseph STEVENTON (or STEVENSON) and Zealous DUNN (married 4 Dec 1794, Dudley).

The IGI has lots of DUNNs in Cradley, but not a Zealous.  Darn!

Any pointers or offers of lookups will be very welcome!

Staffordshire / Rowley Regis address - birth cert reading help needed
« on: Friday 27 July 07 14:46 BST (UK)  »
Can anyone work out what the address says given on this birth certificate from April 1867?

On the 1861 census the family gave their address as Bourn Brook, Rowley Regis, which I assume is the modern Bourne Walk that google maps comes up with.

Lancashire / Wesham Park Hospital, 1956
« on: Tuesday 24 July 07 18:22 BST (UK)  »
I've just received the death certificate of a relative who died at Wesham Park Hospital on 27th April 1956.

The registrar had started to type her home address in the When & Where died field, and that's struck through and instead it says

"26 Wesham Park Hospital, Wesham."

The registrar has also typed out "Twenty Six" in full in the right margin.

Can anybody explain the 26?

I already knew that Wesham specialised in psychiatric and geriatric care, and was originally built as a workhouse, but haven't been able to find out much more by googling: there are just pages of NHS websites (part of it's still used as NHS offices) before I got bored of ploughing through Google's results.  (As an aside it was interesting to read that when the greater part of the hospital was recently demolished, it was for the most part recycled!)

The other interesting thing is that the informant is a W.R. Taylor of 1 Derby Road, Wesham, described merely as "occupier".  It seems odd that some bloke off the street would report the death and not a hospital official.  If he did work at the hospital, surely he'd have described himself as such, not simply as the occupier of a house across the road from the hospital.

Lancashire / Barrow- & Dalton-in-Furness
« on: Thursday 19 July 07 19:06 BST (UK)  »
Could I just check with the collective wisdom what the registration district for Barrow-in-Furness, Dalton-in-Furness and the nearby area would have been in the 1850s-1880s? 

Ulverston up to 1876?

Barrow-in-Furness from 1876?

Just wondering as some of the people I'm looking for in the Barrow area don't appear in the indexes there, but their names & year of birth do appear under Lancaster.

Lancashire / I need help with Emily Smith!
« on: Wednesday 18 July 07 20:20 BST (UK)  »
I've looked and looked and looked for the birth/baptism of Emily Smith without success, and I wonder if a fresh pair of eyes might help, if anyone would be so good as to help me look.

Emily SMITH born c.1867 (Barrow, Lancs according to the 1871 census RG10/4245; Folio: 19; Page: 31)
                    born c.1868 (Dudley, Staffs according to the 1891 census RG12/3455; Folio 111; Page 29)
                    born c.1869 (Staffordshire accordign to the 1901 census RG13/3973; Folio: 123; Page: 35).

It seems marginally more likely that she's born in Furness - Barrow/Dalton as in 1871 the parents would be more likely to remember where their child was born four years previously.  The implication of the 1881 census (RG11/4254; Folio: 26; Page: 47) is that she was born in Barrow too (either that or the blank means her parents couldn't remember). 

Her parents were Henry SMITH (b. c. 1835-1837, Darby Hand, Netherton, Worcs.; d. 5 Jan 1903 Blackpool, Lancs) and Zillah or Priscilla STEVENTON (b 25 Nov 1838 Derby End, Netherton, Worcs.; d. 28 Apr 1892, Blackpool Lancs).  Married 9 Jun 1856 at Netherton Parish Church.  Priscilla's name is different every time I see it: she was Zillah on her birth certificate and it gradually morphs into Priscilla over time.

Henry I have from the 1861 census onwards:
  • 1861 Rowley Regis RG9/2039; Folio: 16; Page: 25
  • 1871 Dalton, Barrow-in-Furness RG10/4245; Folio: 19; Page: 31
  • 1881 Blackpool RG11/4254; Folio: 26; Page: 47
  • 1891 Blackpool RG12/3455; Folio 36; Page 13
  • 1901 Blackpool RG13/3974; Folio: 187; Page: 9.
Unfortunately, I can't find him before 1861 on the census.

Priscilla (or whatever she was calling herself at the time), I've found on all the censuses:
  • 1841 in Dudley HO107, Enumeration District: 34; Page: 10
  • 1851 in Rowley Regis HO107/2028; Folio: 289; Page: 42
  • 1861 in Rowley Regis RG9/2039; Folio: 16; Page: 25
  • and then continuing with hubby till the 1891

As well as the Emily that I'm particularly interested in, Henry SMITH and Priscilla STEVENTON had the following other children
Drucilla (suspect - known only from family lore)
Dina (ditto)
Edith (ditto)
Ann (b. c. 1857 Rowley Regis)
Eliza (b. c. 1859 Old Hill, Staffs)
Henry (b. c. 1862 Old Hill, Staffs)
Jemimah (b. c. 1865 Barrow-in-Furness)
George (1871, Dalton-in-Furness)
William (1874 Barrow-in-Furness)
Ann Maria (1876 Blackpool)
John (1878 Blackpool)
Septimus (1879 Blackpool)  (as well as not being able to write, they couldn't count to seven either ...)

Sorry this is so long, but I guessed when it comes to Smith, as much information as possible is best!

Lancashire / Census reading help please!
« on: Wednesday 18 July 07 15:43 BST (UK)  »
1901 Blackpool
RG13; Piece: 3972; Folio: 124; Page: 9.

What on earth do you suppose Harry's occupation is meant to say?

Assuming it's the same Henry Smith with children Charles and Maud as on the 1891 and on his marriage cert and Charles & Maud's birth certificates) he was variously a fishmonger, a boatman and a fisherman.

Lancashire / Census reading help please!
« on: Wednesday 04 July 07 22:54 BST (UK)  »
What do you make of the little squiggle after the 5 of Gertrude's age?

Could it be meant to say 5 months?

Do you think Stanley's age is 1 or 6?

1901 Census: RG13/3973; Folio: 121; Page: 31.

Occupation Interests / Homoeopathic Chemist & Insurance Agent?
« on: Tuesday 03 July 07 18:08 BST (UK)  »
I hope this is the most appropriate place for this query.

A great x3 great-uncle, Charles Guest, is listed in the 1856 Post Office Directory of Gloucestershire, Bath & Bristol under Bristol (available at, at 35 Triangle as a homoeopathic chemist.  That fits in with other directories and his census returns.  But on page 200, he is also listed under Insurance Agents, under Caledonia.

Am I reading this right, that he also acted as an agent for Caledonia Insurance (whoever they were)?

This is fairly common practice now, with estate agents, solicitors etc acting as agents for building societies etc.  Was it common in the 19th century?

The IGI (Batch: C072981) has the christening of my great (x4) grandfather William COLLIS 16 Jun 1793, and the same batch number reveals two siblings, Elizabeth (1796) and James (1799).

The parents of these three are given as John COLLIS and Susannah.  I would like to find their marriage and hence Susannah's maiden name.  This isn't on the IGI or  If anyone has access to any other databases or indexes they could check for me, or if anyone could check the Parish Registers themselves, I would be most grateful.

The next stage would be to find the parents' baptisms in PRs.

The three children are all born Thundridge, Hertfordshire according to the IGI, so I would assume the marriage is either there or in a nearby parish.

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