Author Topic: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited  (Read 29346 times)

Offline Ruskie

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The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« on: Tuesday 06 November 12 05:31 GMT (UK) »
Inspired by an upcoming talk about the Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson, and the fact that some of us are very keen to reread the diary and ALL of our previous posts on the subject in order to relive the excitement and have another go at solving some of the mysteries, I have decided to start a new post. I hope we get some new followers interested in the diary and our discussions. They are both well worth reading.

The link to Part 9 - our final:
http://www.rootschat.com/forum/index.php/topic,500342.60.html

From the Westminster Archives website:

The life and loves of a Victorian Clerk: an illustrated talk

Monday 12 November, 6.30pm at Maida Vale Library

 In 2010, Westminster City Archives published the extraordinary diary of a Victorian teenager, Nathaniel Bryceson.

Brimming with fascinating details of his working life in London and of his relationship with his mistress Ann Fox, the journal is a truly personal take on the life of a young Victorian Londoner as he embarks upon adulthood.

Come and hear our Local Studies Librarian share entertaining and insightful stories from the diary at Maida Vale Library. The talk will be illustrated with images from the collections of Westminster City Archives.

Free event. No booking required

Contact archives {--at--}westminster.gov.uk or maidavalelibrary{--at--}westminster.gov.uk for more information



Some of you might be interested in going to the above talk to represent rootschat.  :) I know that many of us would love to be there but as we live in various far flung countries, sadly it is not possible for us to attend.

I am still hoping that some progress has been made regarding publishing the diary in book form. I will make some enquiries about this soon.

I hope it is OK with the rootschat powers that be to revisit this under a new topic in the Common Room. I think if Westminster Archives do wish to publish the book, the assistance of rootschatters in providing some background information to support the diary, may be quite valuable. (That's my excuse anyway.  ;D)

So I hope all the old contributors will join in this discussion - new enthusiasts are most welcome!

Offline Ruskie

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Re: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« Reply #1 on: Tuesday 06 November 12 05:38 GMT (UK) »
To start us off, here is a timeline of events that I have put together will help from Deb and others along the way:

3rd Jan 1750
Matthew Ward (father of step father Matthew Ward) born

14 June 1771
Mary Lea (Granny Shepard) born
chr 26 Jul 1771
Saint Martin, Birmingham
father: Charles Lea
mother: Mary   

26th June 1784
Matthew Ward born
chr 25 July 1784
St Mary, St Marylebone Rod, St Marylebone
father: Matthew Ward
mother: Ann

10 May 1796
John Shepard = Mary Lea (Granny Shepard)
St Andrew by the Wardrobe

27 June 1797 
Mary Shepard born
chr 23 Jul 1797
Old Church St Pancras
father: John, mother: Mary

9 Oct 1801
Ann Fox born

9 June 1803 -
(Uncle) John Shepard born
chr 3 July 1803
Old Church St Pancras
father: John, mother: Mary

14 Apr 1818
Mary Sheppard = John Bryceson
St Martin in the Fields Westminster
wits: John Shepard, H. Bryceson

28th Apr 1824
John Bryceson, age 39, abode: St Martin in the Field,
buried Pentonville Chapel, St James, Clerkenwell

5th June 1826 
Nathaniel White born (in the workhouse)
christened 4 Jul 1826
mother: Mary Bryson
father: Nathaniel White, occupation: Pauper

2nd May 1831
Burial - St Pancras
John Sheppard of Stephen Street age 63 years (so b 1768)
[this may be husband of Granny Sheppard]

1840-1841
Nathaniel worked as errand boy for Miss Isabella Emery

1841 census taken 6/7 June

1841 census
Richmond buildings
Richard Vagg, 39, Tailor, N
Catherine Vagg, 39, N
Nathaniel (surname dittoed) 13 Y
[This may be Nathaniel with Vagg surname simply dittoed - note the address][Matthew Ward is a page away from this family in this census]

1841 census
Mary Bryceson has not been found

1841 census
Richmond Buildings
Matthew Ward 56 tailor Y

1841 census
Stephen St, St Pancras
Sophia Ollive 50 Dressmaker Y
Ann Fox 30 FS Y

1841 census
Stephen Street
Mary Sheppard 73 N (Granny Shepard)
John Sheppard 35 stone mason Y (Uncle John)
Joseph Lloyd 20
Elizabeth Lloyd 25

27th June 1841
St Ann Westminster
Matthew Ward, full age, Tailor, living: Richmonds Buildings, father: Matthew Ward, Tailor
married Mary Bryceson, full age, wid, living: Dean St, father: John Sheperd, mason

18th May 1846 
Nathaniel moved into Richmond Buildings

20th May 1846 
Granny Shepard moved into Richmond Buildings

1st June 1846
Uncle John Shepard age 43, has his first bath (worthy of a mention in the timeline)

29 Oct 1847 
Burial - St Anne, Soho 
Mary Ward, Richmond Buildings, age 50 (so born 1797)

1851 census
Tottenham Court
Strand Union workhouse
Mary Shepard, wid, 80, mangler b Birmingham
(26 pages of inmates here)

1851 census
Matthew Ward has not been found
(no death found)

1851 census
9 Richmond Buildings
John Shepard 47 stone sawyer b St Pancras
Nathaniel Bryceson nephew 24 b Marylebone

1851 census
27 Stephen Street
Cock Family
John Burns
Mary Elizth Kennington, unm 63, mangling, b Middlesex, St James Piccadilly
Ann Fox, 49, Charwoman, b Middlesex, Queen St

20th Nov 1851
Parish of St Pancras
Mary Shepard buried, age 80, abode: Infirmary

1852 
Nathaniel moved from Richmond Buildings to Islington

June 18 1854
Nathaniel Bryceson, full age, commercial clerk, residence: Edwards Cottages, father: Nathaniel Bryceson, cabinet maker
married Sarah Clark

1861 census
10 Edward's Cottages, Islington
Nathaniel 34 coal merchant's clerk b Marylebone
Sarah wife b Herts Barnet
Nathaniel son 4 b Islington
Sarah M daur 2
John S son 1

1861 census
6 Douglas Street, Westminster
John Shepard lodger unmar 57 stone sawyer b St Pancras

1868
death certificate: John Sheperd, male age 64 years, Stone Sawyer,
died 17 Jan 1868 6 Douglas Street, Westminster, 
Diarrhoea 5 weeks,
Informant: Jane Sulch/Lulch, present at the death

1871 census
10 Edwards Cottages, Islington
Nathaniel 44 coal merchant's clerk b Marylebone
Sarah 45 b Herts Barnet
Nathaniel son 14 errand boy b Islington
Sarah M daur 12
John S son 10
Henry son 7

1881 census
48 Essex Rd, Islington Green Nth
Nathaniel 54 accountant
Sarah wife 55
Nathaniel son 24 undertaker
Sarah daur 22
John son 21 compositor
Henry son 17 builder's labourer

1890
Sarah, Nathaniel's wife died

1891 census
4 Charlton Place, Islington
Nathaniel head wid 65 accountant
Henry son 27 unmar timekeeper

Nathaniel is listed in Kelly's till 1895 as an accountant

1901 census
Warren Street, Clerkenwell
Nathaniel 74 widr commercial clerk b St.Marylebone
Emma Morris servt single 64 b St Giles in the Fields

23rd March 1911
Nathaniel died, 102 Dempsey St, Stepney (at his daughter Sarah Stangroom's house)
Son Henry was the informant.
Cause of death: Senile Degeneration Exhaustion
Buried Islington Cemetery, Finchley
[Bryceson Nathaniel; No. 139239; Abode, Dempsey St, Stepney; Class 2; V2; 1229P - buried with son Nathaniel who died in February 1911] 

[info about later years from intro to diary on Westminster Archvies site - needs expanding]


Islington Cemetery in Finchley.
February 1911
Name: Bryceson Nathaniel; No. 138957; Abode (!) Royal Free Hospital; Class of grave, 3; Block V2 Grave 1229P   

Offline Siamese Girl

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Re: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« Reply #2 on: Tuesday 06 November 12 08:56 GMT (UK) »
Hello everyone.

I'm afraid I can't make the talk, but I'll try and get my head around the Nathaniel saga again (at the moment I'm chasing the life of another diary figure - Turner Roope - from the pages of James Woodforde's diary. 3 marriages, debtors prison and a life in the West Indies. Plenty for me to get my head around)

Just as a random thought, as I haven't looked yet - the enigmatic Ann Fox . We've got her birthday - 9 October 1801 - and where she was born - Queen Street Middlesex - have we gone through parish registers for Queen Street (at the moment I don't even know which parish it is in)  looking for an Ann born or baptised around that date? I know there will be a lot of Anns but I'm just wondering that if we can find a few suitable candidates we could then see if any of them went onto marry a Mr Fox, because as we know so little about her we don't even know if she was married or not do we?

I haven't got time at the moment to look, but perhaps it's a thought? It is a long shot I know but I'm just trying to think of something we may not have tried (although perhaps we have and I've just forgotten about it!)

Carole
CHILD Glos/London, BONUS London, DIMSDALE London, HODD and TUTT Sussex,  BONNER and PATTEN Essex, BOWLER and HOLLIER Oxfordshire, HUGH Lincolnshire, LEEDOM all.

Offline Aniseed

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Re: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« Reply #3 on: Tuesday 06 November 12 11:05 GMT (UK) »
Looking forward to following this again! I can't go to the talk either, unfortunately.

Please could someone direct me to where it's possible to re-read the diary, as my link stopped working at the end of that year?


Offline Ruskie

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Re: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« Reply #4 on: Tuesday 06 November 12 11:15 GMT (UK) »
Here you go Aniseed:
http://www.westminster.gov.uk/services/libraries/archives/victorian-clerk/

Carole, I need to re read to get it all fresh in my mind again (I have an awful memory), but I think that Ann was born in either Queen or Green St (we couldn't be sure because the writing was unclear). I remember thinking I had struck gold finding a Queen St in the vicinity of Soho, but then the heart sank as I found another ... and another.  :-\ But every avenue is well worth reinvestigating. Like you, I can't remember what we have already searched for.

I did dig up a list of questions which I put together which I will post shortly.

Offline Ruskie

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Re: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« Reply #5 on: Tuesday 06 November 12 11:21 GMT (UK) »
Here it is (quite lengthy I'm sorry):

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

A little background information and loose ends we would like to tidy up:

Matthew Ward does not appear to be on 1851 census - did he die before then? We might be looking for his death betweeen December 1846 (when Nathaniel finishes his diary) and March 1851 (when the census was taken)?

Looking for Nathaniel's mother Mary Bryceson in 1841? The 1841 census was taken 6/7 June. Mary married Matthew Ward on the 27th June and she said she lived at Dean St then. Matthew Ward is at Richmond Buildings in 1841 and says his address is Richmond Buildings on his marriage cert. Where is Mary?

Where is Nathaniel in the 1841 census? As discussed at length, someone on Ancestry has made an alteration to the 1841 census transcription saying that a Nathaniel Bryceson is living in Shoreditch with someone called Ann, a weaveress, who appears to be his mother plus several siblings. However we have traced this family and this is not our Nat. There is even some debate over the surname which looks more like Bryan and doesn't appear to be long enough to be Bryceson. Also Nathaniel never mentions any siblings.I found a Vagg family in 13 Richmond Buildings.The head, Richard Vagg is a tailor (as is Matthew Ward so perhaps they knew eachother).There doesn't appear to be births/baptisms for any children for the Vaggs. The Nathaniel with them just has the surname dittoed and the age is right to be our Nat so I wonder if he was lodging with or just visiting the Vaggs and the surname was dittoed in error?

Looking for Nathaniel White, Nat's father, and his death? Why was he in the Workhouse? How did Mary know him? Why was she involved with a pauper in the WH? He is named as the father on the baptism entry so he acknowledged that he is the father. We know that the parish was chasing him for money for support prior to Nathaniel's birth.Is there any more info about this in any records? Are there any WH records which name Nathaniel White, or give details of our Nat's birth? Which WH might he have been born in? Was Mary also in the WH? I have traced a Nathaniel White, chair maker through the censuses - he appears to be single throughout. He lives Marylebone. Is he Nat's real father?

Did Nat know his real father was Nathaniel White. At one stage he told us that he found Bryceseon graves in St paul's Covent Gdn. He was a White rather than a Bryceson so we think he might not have known the truth at this stage. However his ggggrandson Steven Saxby recalls his grandmother mentioning illegitimacy in the family and also mentioning the surname White, so it seems Nathaniel may have learnt the truth at some stage in his life and this was passed down through the family.

Is there a death for uncle John Shepard? He is living alone on the 1861 census - age 57.I can't find him in the 1871 census so did he die in between censuses?[ Yes, death found and certificate purchased.]

Where is Ann Fox in 1861? She is living with Mrs Kennington in Stephen Street in 1851. If she died before 1861 where is her death/burial? The 1851 says she was born Middx Queen or Green St - can we decipher and locate this and find her birth? Due to the fact that she attended Tottenham Court Road Chapel, it has been suggested that she may have been non-conformist. Are there any non-conformist records for the area?

Offline Aniseed

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Re: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« Reply #6 on: Tuesday 06 November 12 13:12 GMT (UK) »
Thank you very much for the link Ruskie, I appreciate it.

Offline drykid

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Re: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« Reply #7 on: Tuesday 06 November 12 19:02 GMT (UK) »
I've nothing to add fact-wise, but I wanted to say that it's nice that this topic is being discussed again, and that there's the hope of new discoveries.  I was certainly one of the ones who got very into all this first time around :)

Offline Ruskie

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Re: The Diary of Nathaniel Bryceson Revisited
« Reply #8 on: Tuesday 06 November 12 22:16 GMT (UK) »
I've nothing to add fact-wise, but I wanted to say that it's nice that this topic is being discussed again, and that there's the hope of new discoveries.  I was certainly one of the ones who got very into all this first time around :)

Glad that you have returned drykid. You never know, you may have a bright idea which leads to a new discovery.

As well as our regular contributors, I am hoping that some new blood will join us. (I hope people are not put off by the length and number of our previous threads), but if they only read the diary, they may be able to look at it through fresh eyes, and could very well have some worthwhile contributions to make.  ;D