A Mysterious Child

Sophia WALLIS was baptised at St Oswald’s on this day in 1850 and buried in the churchyard less than a week later. The burial register offers “Inft” in the age column but I can’t find her birth registration in this country. She may have been born in Germany weeks or months earlier  – and baptised in Filey as her time for departure drew near.

Whatever forces brought this family to Filey, they didn’t keep the survivors here. I wonder how the parents fared.

Mary Ann was the fifth and last child of fisherman and lodging housekeeper Matthew CRAWFORD and Sarah JAMESON (FG&C). She married John Robert STORRY at Filey St Oswald’s on 3 December 1904 and they set up home in Scarborough. Henry was born in the summer of 1906 and may have been their only child. John, a labourer at marriage, was described as a “retired coal dealer” in 1932 when Mary Ann died. She left him effects valued at a little over a hundred pounds.

John was still living at 72 Commercial Street when The Register was taken in September 1939, working as a grocer and general dealer. He died at the Fair View Hotel in Scarborough in the first week of January 1951. His son Henry may have been the hotel’s proprietor because at probate John’s address was given as 2 St John’s Avenue. Henry and his wife Jane Ann are named in the Probate record; John’s effects were valued at £6,199 3s. 1d.

There are earlier two posts looking at Christopher and Elizabeth – End of a Line? and Coltas Continued.

Edward didn’t use all his given names all of the time and is remembered as just Edward on the family headstone in St Oswald’s churchyard. I have put him on the Shared Tree and connected him to Georgina, who was already there, waiting. There is a little more work to do on the family

It is Fanny the Second who was buried this day. She lived about sixteen months longer than her older namesake.

Townscape 80 · Filey

Insect 44 · Small White♀

A few brief comments about today’s anniversary people.

I put John William on the Shared Tree and linked him up with his wife – and his mother. He has nine siblings out there somewhere.

Richard GREENLEY has two IDs on FamilySearch – and two sets of parents. Filey Genealogy & Connections offers George Greenlay (sic) and Ann PASHBY and they have a son called Benjamin who is mentioned in an obituary of Richard on the Shared Tree. Confusingly, this document is attached to the record with the “wrong” parents (possibly).

Robert Tate KILLINGBECK is a grandson of John, who was killed by an express train (Anniversary 31 March).

Rosanna was eighteen when she married John Thomas GRASSBY at Filey St Oswald’s in July 1874. They named their first child Rosannah but she only lived for seven months. Rosanna died at the age of twenty-one. Her husband had three decades of life ahead of him but I haven’t attempted to discover what he did with his time. (He has 19 sources on his Shared Tree record.)


Margaret BULMER and her husband, William Hunter CAMBRIDGE, were born in Hartlepool, but after the birth of their fourth child, the family moved south to Filey. On census night 1851 their house in Murray Street sheltered four boat builders – William, his Hartlepool brother Thomas, and two young apprentices.

William died in 1875 and Margaret followed seventeen years later. A fine stone remembers them but it has been almost entirely overwhelmed by the large bush that arches over the main path. A few days ago I snapped the inscription while holding back the leaves.

Here is the rear view.

Filey Genealogy & Connections marries Esther to George PICKERING in Bridlington in 1900 and gives them nine children but doesn’t tell us when they left this world. I wondered if FamilySearch would have this information. The Shared Tree adds two more children to their collection, giving Esther three score years and ten and George a bonus of five more. As if this isn’t pleasing enough – there are photographs of the serious-looking couple, taken on their wedding day. They have a host of ancestors.

Robinson was born in Snainton and baptised in the village two days later. Perhaps he wasn’t expected to live. Aged 13 in 1841, he is with his mother on census night in his grandfather Thomas BURNETT’s house in Carr Lane, Brompton-by Sawdon. FG&C doesn’t record the death of his father, Richard, but it won’t be a surprise to find he didn’t make old bones because Robinson died at thirty-seven. The Shared Tree reveals that this is nine years more than his father enjoyed. In 1851, Robinson was working as a butcher and farmer with his father-in-law and as a cattle dealer in 1861. He married in 1850 and had five children with Mary. The youngest, Thomas, was three years old when Robinson died. Thirty-six years would pass before Mary was reunited with him in St Oswald’s churchyard.

The Shared Tree has the marriage of Robert and Prudence on this day in 1803 but the original source doesn’t give their ages. Another source says the wedding took place a little over a year earlier, on 6 May and says the groom was 32 years old and the bride thirty. Prudence lived long enough to be enumerated in 1841 (Muston) and 1851 (Mosey’s Yard, Filey) and her declared ages indicate her birth in 1771 and 1767 respectively. Aged 84 at her last census, she died a few weeks later – at 85 according to the death registration. Prudence has a possible duplicate ID (MGTP-H7D) on FamilySearch attached to an Egton (Whitby) baptism record, dated 20 June 1767. Only her mother’s name is given – Jane Petch. The 1851 census transcript says Prudence was born in “Easton”, Yorkshire, and it is very clearly written thus on the page image. There is a place called Easton in the East Riding, at the edge of Bridlington, but perhaps the enumerator misheard. An “Independent” widow in 1841, Prudence is a “Miller’s widow” in 1851. Robert’s occupation could have taken him to several villages in the course of his working life – and he may have been in Nunburnholme with Prudence when he died there in February 1823. There is a March 1st Hutton Cranswick burial record for this fellow, aged 53.

Elizabeth was only 27 years old when she died in Filey on this day in 1813. The available records indicate that ten days passed before she was buried. She is one of eight people named on a large flat stone in St Oswald’s churchyard, most of whom are yet to be connected on the Shared Tree. As I write this, FG&C is more informative. (Mary HASELWOOD MGCT-5WP, the grandmother of Elizabeth Richardson is in the wings, awaiting connection.)

Tree 77 · Beech

Church Ravine

Sunset 13 · Cleveland Way

Henry was the first child born to Stephenson HALL and Jane WRIGHT but in the Crescent lodging house his parents kept in 1881 he had a brother some six years older. John Yarnell Wright, father unknown but maybe a Mr Yarnell, had been accepted by Stephenson as his own son.

Filey Genealogy and Connections gives Henry three sisters and a brother. All five children and their mother seem to be strangers to FamilySearch, but you will find Stephenson’s first family on the Shared Tree. The two boys, Henry and Moses, lived longer in Mary Gardiner’s womb than out of it, their deaths registered in the same quarter as their births. Mary, four years or so older than her husband, died in the June Quarter of 1875, at the given age of fifty-nine. Before the year was out, Stephenson had married the much younger Jane. (The “gap” was about twenty years.)

With a large chunk of my working day getting this far, I made a punt at trying to discover what became of Henry Stephenson Hall. He married Minnie FELL in Scarborough in November 1900 and at the start of the Second World War, they were living in Main Street, Seamer. And they are both on the Shared Tree. I know enough to give Henry some forebears but that’s a task for another day – or for someone else to tackle.

Eunice married Harry McINTYRE in 1925  and died twelve days after giving birth to their son, Gordon. She was seventeen years old. I don’t have a photograph of her headstone yet but the inscription reads –


Sacred to the memory of EUNICE, the beloved wife of HARRY MCINTYRE and daughter of ALFRED AND EMILY LONG, born April 14th 1908, died Jan 31st 1926.

In 1939, Gordon was living in The Newlands, Filey with his father Harry and Margaret McIntyre.

Ruth has featured in a number of LaF and LaF Redux posts. Check out her husband Wilf, and be sure to follow links to Norwood School.

Mark Of Man 88 · Happy Bench

Church Ravine

Mark of Woman

Some lost hours today and poor time management of the remainder have not mixed well with more Shared Tree shenanigans. Anniversary stories are fragmentary.

Mary is the illegitimate daughter of a young woman who was herself, I think, born out of wedlock. I don’t think Mary survived her first year of life because her mother is in service on a 330 acre Driffield farm in the spring of 1881.

Hannah has two fathers on the Shared Tree. Their names are similar but “the system” does not flag them as possible duplicates.

Registered at birth as John Robinson, Hannah’s father chose to sign the St Oswald’s marriage register as, I guess, John Stubbs Robinson.

Hannah married John William ROSS and has two memorials in the churchyard. An open book is barely legible but this flower container gives clear information –

Hannah SPENDLEY was William MASON’s second wife. Elizabeth CAMMISH is on the Shared Tree with some of their children but has yet to be properly acknowledged. She was 29 years old when she died and has a symbolic shrouded urn on her headstone in St Oswald’s churchyard.

Robert Shepherd WOODCOCK’s stone is saddening for a different reason – there is plenty of “real estate” to let us know he had company on his life’s journey but it hasn’t been used.

When Doris LONGHORN has been given an ID I will put a photo of her stone on the Shared Tree.

A Happy Life Well Spent

Hatty MIDDLEWOOD’s birthday gives me an excuse to re-post The Middlewood Windows (Looking at Filey, 7 August 2011).

Two large stained glass windows in Filey Methodist Church are dedicated to the Glory of God but also remember George MIDDLEWOOD, his wife Mary Jane, and their only son John Charles. On Friday I was given permission to photograph the windows – and to post the results here. Here are a couple of details.

Courtesy Filey Methodist Church

The name MIDDLEWOOD was vaguely familiar, but I had to Google George to discover I’d put him on the Wiki in the December Anniversary list! He died in St Just, Cornwall on the 18th of December 1922, aged 88. Mary Jane had died twenty years earlier in Filey and she is buried in St Oswald’s churchyard. She was sixty-three years old, though the Free BMD registration gives “65” (Scarborough 9d 222). John Charles lived a few days beyond his sixth birthday. Mary Jane was forty-three years old when she gave birth to her only son and fourth child in December 1871. Firstborn Emily had been born in 1866 and then there were the almost regulation two year gaps to Hannah and Hatty.

The three girls were born in Gristhorpe and at the 1881 Census Emily and Hannah, age 17 and 15, were Pupil Teachers. I don’t know what became of these two young ladies, but Hatty lived on through two World Wars and died in August 1949 in her 82nd year. Her inscription on the St Oswald’s headstone tells us that hers was “a happy life well spent”.

Mary Jane being an elderly primer, with a family residence in Gristhorpe, two daughters possibly going into teaching careers and, above all, being memorialized in two beautiful stained glass windows – everything seems to point to the Middlewoods being from the first rank of Victorian society but in 1881 George was a butcher with a shop in Murray Street. And the family appears to have lived above it.

George was born in Muston, but it doesn’t appear that the Middlewoods were long stayers there. I don’t know what trade or profession his father John followed.

Mary Jane at the 1881 and 1891 censuses gave her birthplace as Harrogate which inevitably prompts speculation that, perhaps, she may have married beneath her station. She was a daughter of Matthew YOUNG and Hannah and baptized at Kirkby Overblow just south of Harrogate on 28th December 1828 (Family Search, Source film 918345). She married George at Sherburn near Leeds when she was thirty-one years old (Family Search, Source film 1068405; Free BMD Tadcaster 9c 646).

George retired from trade in his early fifties, and it must have been a terrible blow to lose his wife in 1892. Hatty, only 22 years old, had been living with her parents the year before so he wasn’t left completely alone. And of course, he had the community of the Wesleyan Methodists to support him. He and his family were clearly loved and respected in Filey to be given such a fine memorial in the Church. I wonder what the circumstances were that took him all the way to Cornwall at his great age.

She Married a Memorable Manitoban

In Filey Genealogy & Connections, Sarah Jane was the eighth of nine children born to John WOOD of Gristhorpe and Sarah ATKINSON from Hutton Buscel. The Shared Tree indicates that five of the younger Wood children emigrated to Canada. The parents seem to disappear from English records except for an assertion by FG&C that Sarah was buried in St Oswald’s churchyard in July 1895. My failure to see Woods in England didn’t seem to matter when there were so many of them on the Shared Tree, a good number pictured – one being Sarah Jane’s memorable husband, George E. COLE.


FG&C gives Rickman and Margaret only one child – Sarah born in 1828. The 1851 census finds mother and daughter in Dog and Duck Lane where Margaret, at the age of 46, Margaret is a “fisherman’s widow”. The Shared Tree gives Sarah three brothers – John, William and Robert. The youngest boy, born in 1833, is found in 1841 at the above address aged 8 with his mother “Mary”,  and siblings Sarah and John. Father Rickman could have been away at sea on census night but, given the lack of further additions to the family, he was more likely deceased.

Sarah and Robert moved north to Hartlepool, found partners and gave Margaret plenty of grandchildren. In 1871, named “Margaret Fenling” in the census, born Filey but with the erroneously given age of sixty, she was with Sarah, son in law Jacob and six COX children at 17 Mosley Street, Hartlepool. She was, alas, described as an invalid and her death before the year was out is noted on the Shared Tree.

Flight of Fancy 46 · Scum Face

Casualties of War

Phyllis Ritchie and Kenneth Simpson CLARKE were aged six and five when their mother, Norah Mary née RITCHIE was killed by Walther SCHWEIGER, captain of U-20, and his crew. She was not alone. Another twelve hundred people aboard RMS Lusitania perished with her.

Phyllis was born in Fife, Scotland and her husband, Francis William Clarke, was a Hull man. The family of four plus servant Ellen STANWELL was caught by the 1911 census in South Street, Cottingham. Francis, a printer’s commercial traveller, provides the Filey connection – he was a nephew of William STORY who had died in an earlier war, at Balaclava in the Crimea.

Two Mariners

The year before Elizabeth’s parents married, Richard Fox YOUNG was trying to drum up custom.

Elizabeth, Filey-born, would marry a sailor from her father’s home town, Scarborough, but William HUNTLEY may have been a disappointment to her. In 1871 they were living on the Crescent in Filey with Elizabeth’s maiden aunt Mary WILLIAMSON. William’s status – “mariner unemployed”. He must, however, have brought home a load of bacon subsequently because their address at the next two censuses was Ambrosia Villa on the Foreshore.

During their occupation, the house never rang with the voices of children, not theirs at least. William died from here in 1898 and three years later Elizabeth had downsized to a modest terrace property in Mitford Street.  Aged seventy-five, she told the 1901 census enumerator that she was “living on her own means”, and offered the name of a servant – Sarah Ann KNAGGS, 39.

Abstract 98 · Street Art

Bird 123 · Mallard

Glen Gardens

In Filey Genealogy & Connections, Thomas Smith OMAN marries Hannah Green BRAMLEY at St Oswald’s in 1854 and they have five children in the following seventeen years. The lives of all five children are “endless” in the database. Mary is the middle one, born in 1864. The GRO Index, however, gives her three more siblings, making her the fifth of eight Oman children. The census records indicate that she leaves home in her mid-teens to work in service. In 1881 she is found in Westbourne Park, Scarborough, the only domestic servant in the large household of widow Jane Woodcock, a retired hosier. (Jane’s married daughter Mary is in residence on census night with husband Robert Dunn WOODALL and their nine children.) Ten years later, our Mary is still single, a servant to the HAWSON sisters at a lodging house they run in Prince of Wales Terrace, Scarborough. I lose track of Mary there. (I have put Mary on the Shared Tree but the Bramley family requires a lot of work. Mary’s new ID doesn’t take you to half of it.)

Oh, Mary was born before her parents married but she is clearly a Bramley.

Henry’s birth year ranges between 1818 and 1827 in online family trees. The 1871 Census and his death registration agree that 1818 is correct, though he wasn’t baptised until 6 May 1822. He is working in Newark as a brickmaker in 1841 and a waterman in 1851. Between those years he had spent some time on the south coast, getting Sarah Ann OVERY with child but then marrying her and bringing her home to Nottinghamshire. I cannot find a birth registration for either Charles Cobb or Charles Overy. The boy who would winter in the Arctic aboard the whaler Diana is a Cobb in 1850s Newark and an Overy when he marries in Hull in 1867. Henry had eight other children with Sarah Ann. The youngest, Henry junior, was seven in 1871 when his father was working as a porter in Newark. (Henry senior is a great grandfather of Charles Overy Belt: marriage anniversary 29 April.)

Filey fisherman Charles SKELTON was 33 when he married Ann CHADWICK at Flamborough St Oswald’s. FG&C hasn’t blessed them with children.

Ellen was twenty-three when she married George BOWES at Filey St Oswald’s. They almost made it to a fiftieth wedding anniversary. George lived another eight years. Neither has a place on the Shared Tree yet.

Henry had been given the middle name “Thomson” when he was baptised but he is just Henry when his death is registered. I haven’t found the reason for his early passing.

The Disconsolate Widow

Margaret COWLING was baptised at Filey St Oswald’s on this day in 1815. On Christmas Eve 1842 she married fisherman Thomas HUNTER in the same church. The couple is together on Filey Genealogy & Connections but not yet on the FamilySearch Shared Tree. They are childless on FG&C and this morning I didn’t know how long they lived. I couldn’t find them in any England & Wales census and had little hope that they had emigrated – it isn’t what fishermen do in my experience. Disappearing from the records usually means that they have died – and their widows have married again.

Margaret had been married for forty-one days (by my reckoning) but I am quite sure that she is the disconsolate widow. I will make an effort to find her in happier circumstances. The drowned brothers appear to have been the sons of John CAMMISH and Elizabeth EDMOND. FG&C doesn’t give them marriages, children and dates of death. Just a brief note for Robert – “1841: at home with his parents”.

I have little to say about the other anniversary people. Elizabeth DAVIS was the greatest challenge – a singleton on FG&C with a one-word note. “Married?” The date of her burial and age at death ), didn’t help much.

Dog 37 · Willow

Parish Wood