Tailor, Soldier, Sailor…

… Cutler, Sadler, Bricklayer – and Beggarman!

The COLLEY who had twelve children with Elizabeth WHITING, three of them before his sixteenth birthday, was a  Bill of several trades and the master of just one at best. But he could multi-task in different parts of Yorkshire (at the same time); could die and be reborn. On the FamilySearch Shared Tree, he is unbelievable.

Seemingly the first child to arrive, little William Colley, was christened in Doncaster in June 1813, the son of a soldier. Two months earlier, his brother John had been blessed in Ecclesfield, where William senior worked as a cutler.

George, next on the list, is a mistake, christened in Hull but perhaps born in Leeds. His father isn’t William anyway, it’s George.

Back to Doncaster for Mary Ann, where dad is William again and a “sadler”. Three years later in the same place, a second John appears, and father William has re-enlisted. Maybe sadler is a spelling mistake.

Between the Donny kids, Mary Ann and John Two, Rosanna shows up in Ecclesfield, the cutler’s daughter. She is christened just 6 months before her younger brother John.

Next comes the only real child of the real Elizabeth Whiting, Maria. Eighteen years-old in 1841, she is a dressmaker, living with her parents in Skipsea.

Henry is something of a puzzle. On the Shared Tree, he is born in Doncaster but his single source shows him in the 1861 census as a 38-year-old boarder, working as a waterman. The only Henry Colley I could find born in Doncaster in 1823 was illegitimate, his putative father named as Thomas JINKINSON (sic).

Walter is next, born in Bridlington, his father a sailor.

The last three children are a tailor’s children all born in Scawton, though John the Third has a Gravesend christening source attached to him.

The Scawton Colleys were the easiest to trace through the censuses. Their mother, Elizabeth Somebody, gives Bridlington as her birthplace in 1851 and 1861. In 1841 she is with her husband and sons Lawrence and John in Scawton. (At the same time, remember, Elizabeth Whiting is in Skipsea with her William, Maria and a relative, Robert PAPE, 14.)

So, the Tailor of Scawton found his bride Elizabeth on the Yorkshire Coast and their first child was born in the area known as the Quay, though his christening entry raises the spectre of another spelling mistake (or trap for transcribers).

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But in 1841, as mentioned above, the Tailor and his Bridlington born wife were in Scawton with two of the three boys. Not far away at Rye House Farm, an agricultural labourer called William Colley, calculated birth year 1822, is living-in with other farm servants, working for Farmer Ann WIND, 76.

On 30 November 1819 in Bridlington, a William Colley married Elizabeth JARMAN. Her christening record gives “JARMAINE”. She lived to the grand age of 85. There are records for the burials of the couple at St Mary, Scawton, in 1877. William died in February, aged 78, and Elizabeth in June. Their calculated dates of birth and death closely match those given in the Shared Tree, where so much else is wrong.

Oh! Beggarman. At the 1851 census, William senior of Scawton is described as a “Pauper”. Elizabeth too. But ten years later he is tailoring again, ripe old age beckoning.

Curiously, if you examine all the sources given for fantasy William and his impossible offspring, you’ll find quite a few that support the narrative arcs I’ve tried to briefly describe.

There are too many descendants of the erroneous couple for me to set things straight on the Shared Tree. I’ll leave it to “family”. I will, though, attempt to make correct the misrepresentations of the St Oswald’s churchyard Colleys.

Here is a photograph of one of them, donated to Looking at Filey by David Dickson.

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Hannah Eleanor Barwick e COLLEY

 

 

 

The Colley Brothers?

Kath has a note in Filey Genealogy & Connections about John and George COLLEY.

1861; [John] In 5 The Crescent, was he George Colley’s brother (bricklayer) who was the s. of John Colley. 1851; a visitor living with Richard & Jane Ferguson in Back Rd. a bricklayer. did he come to Filey to help with the development of New Filey? 1871: a builder living with family on the Crescent.

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No.5 The Crescent is a substantial property for a brickie and those making up Cliff Terrace were not shabby either. The distance from the black door above to Wrays (photo in Saturday’s post) is about 120 yards. Not far, but not proof of a blood relationship.

Turn the clock back 20 years. John and George are living in Bridlington. John, 16, is a bricklayer’s apprentice, living with his father, stepmother, three brothers and a sister in Church Green. George, given age 30, a journeyman bricklayer, is in Pinfold Street with his first wife Ann. They share the dwelling with another couple, John and Bridget AGAR, and their newborn son Thomas. It is a three-minute walk from Church Green to Pinfold Street. George and John’s proximity in two towns and their shared occupation surely makes them “family”.

Living at 5 The Crescent in 1861 with John, his wife Grace and their two infant boys is John’s father, also John, who headed the Church Green household in 1841. It is he who is George’s brother.

I am not the only one who has been struggling to untangle Colleys. When George was five years old, his eldest brother William married Elizabeth WHITING in Skipsea. I have so far found three of their children, but on the FamilySearch Shared Tree they have been given twelve.

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The marriage of William and Elizabeth is right, and Elizabeth’s dates of birth and death and her parents may be correct. But William was born in 1788, died in 1845 and has the wrong parents here. Only Maria in the list of twelve children rightly belongs to William and Elizabeth. (They also have a Skipsea born and christened George and Ann, their firstborn, who is missing from the list.) All the others belong to someone else.

This outlandish family is, however, well documented. One of them has twenty sources attached. But a close reading of the christenings reveals the family to be itinerants. Chronologically, the children were blessed in Doncaster, Ecclesfield, Hull, Doncaster, Ecclesfield, Doncaster, Skipsea, Bridlington, Scawton (x3) and Gravesend. Yeah, right.

If I seem a bit peeved, it gets worse. Looking for Ann in the FamilySearch Sources returns her as the top hit, but clicking on the tree icon brings up the Mary Ann born in Doncaster three years later (No.4 on the above list). This is very annoying.

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I made a lot of progress with the Real Colleys today – because I had a lot of help. In a dusty folder on a back-up hard drive, I found a Colley Family “story” sent to me seven or eight years ago, in response to a post written for the original Looking at Filey blog. I hope to right most of the Colley wrongs on FST over the next week or two.

Also in the letter Charlotte Brontë wrote to Ellen Nussey (Saturday’s post):-

Filey seems to me much altered; more lodging-houses – some of them very handsome – have been built; the sea has all its old grandeur.

The first observation echoes Kath’s note about there being plenty of work for brickies in “New Filey”. The second gives me an excuse to link to the First Man in Filey. Adam tries out a new camera on the path to Filey Brigg, on Carr Naze, at Bempton Cliffs and Selwicks Bay.

Charlotte wanted to go on the Brigg in 1852.

One day I set out with intent to trudge to Filey Bridge, but was frightened back by two cows. I mean to try again some morning.

I wonder what she would make of digital cameras.

‘Baltic’ and ‘Noran’

In a Filey Genealogy & Connections note, Kath says that George Whiteley BOYNTON acquired his by-name following his experience of fighting in the Crimean War. Little more than a boy, he was seemingly a combatant in a distant theatre of that conflict – the Baltic Sea. When the Anglo-French fleet attacked Kronstadt in 1854 he would have been just twelve years old, and a few weeks short of his 14th birthday at the war’s end. He gave his occupation as “Mariner” when he married Ann SAYERS in 1864.

Richard Duke ROBINSON, known locally as ‘Noran’ or ‘Dickie Noran’ (for a reason unknown to me), was 47 years younger than George. He made a useful prop for the older man when they were photographed on a quayside with five other fishermen.

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This undated photo was kindly donated to the Looking at Filey blog by Suzanne Pollard and several names were usefully provided. If you reckon ‘Noran’ to be about 14, that would make ‘Baltic’ sixty-one years old, and the year 1903 or thereabouts.

At the 1911 census, George is still working at age 69, but as a general labourer, and living at 4 Spring Road, Filey, with Ann. The couple had six children, two of them failing to reach the first birthday. Three married and two of the boys would acquire distinctive by-names of their own – ‘Boysher’ and ‘Rammy’. More about them some other time.

I have a vague memory of hearing an amusing story about Dickie Noran. I’ll chase it up and, if recovered, share it here.

It appears that George acquired a lasting taste for violence in the eponymous northern sea. Married four years and with third child Annie’s appearance imminent…

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In November 1877, the Scarborough Mercury reported: –

Fighting at Brid Station

At the Bridlington Petty Sessions on Saturday, before Lieut-Col Prickett and Mr C. Mortlock, George Boynton, of Filey, fisherman, was summoned for wilfully interfering with the comfort of the passengers at the Bridlington Railway Station on 13th ult. Inspector Craig of the North Eastern Railway appeared for the company. George Knaggs, porter, stated that defendant and a number of other fishermen were on the platform arguing about a boat, when defendant struck one of the others and a fight ensued. Defendant was turned out of the station but returned and renewed the disturbance. Fined £1 including costs.

George and Ann’s last child was born about three years later and if you think young Frank’s by-name, ‘Rammy’, has violent connotations, you’d be right. But it seems to have been confined to the football field.

George was eighty when he died in 1922 and Ann 86 when reunited with him four years later.

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Find them on the Shared Tree. George’s mother, Elizabeth SUTTON, is not on FST yet. I’m struggling to determine which of several Boynton men called Francis she married.

Another Guesswork Wife

The mother of the Sellers boys (yesterday’s post) is Sarah McLAREN on Filey Genealogy & Connections. This Sarah is given the same dates and children as Sarah WILSON, the rightful wife of Robert senior.

The McLarens offer wider horizons than the Wilsons. This isn’t immediately apparent if you have clicked the link to Sarah M. Three other children of David McLaren and Jane SMURFOOT married, but it is Hannah who connects to several Filey families with interesting, though not extensive, pedigrees. She married into the BRAMBLES, which lead to COULTAS and WATKINSON. And one Thomas COULTAS married a Sarah Jane SELLERS, born only two years or so before a daughter given the same name by Robert Sellers and Sarah Wilson. Most of these connections appear to be reliable.

I wondered this morning who Sarah McLAREN married, if anyone, and was surprised to find her contributing to future generations on the Shared Tree.

Although FG&C has again been found wanting with a guesswork wife fail, Kath offers more people in these families than FST. I will add as many as I can, as and when…

Intruders

It is easy to make mistakes when compiling family trees but, when whoppers are made on FamilySearch, “the system” usually issues a caution. Not in this case –

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My persons of interest here are William George LONG and his wife, Hannah Elizabeth Susan HEADLEY. There are two headstones in St Oswald’s churchyard, side by side. One remembers William and Hannah’s seven-year-old daughter, Kate Mary. The other lists four of their grandchildren who died in infancy, including a second Kate Mary, but this one a RICKARD, who died aged 7 months. They were children of Hannah Maria LONG and “Billy Ricky”, who ran the chemist shop that still plies the trade at the corner of Murray Street and West Avenue, now as Boots but previously Whitfield’s.

Hannah Elizabeth was a daughter of Morris HEADLEY and Ann DOEG who seem to appear twice in the screenshot. The couple to the left is correctly positioned chronologically and between them and the would be “older” pair is their son (possibly) and his wife Anna Maria Bridgnell WALMSLEY. This couple married in Gateshead but as you can see from the screenshot Anna gave her birthplace as Dudley in a census. They were both some distance from home. My task now is to put them in their proper place, before I upload the headstone photos as Memories – and remove the duplicate Morris and Ann pairing.

I miss the ramson carpets that cover the floors of Coalbrookdale’s coppices and woods at this time of year. There are some small patches of wild garlic (aka “stinking lily”) in Filey, like this one by Black Cliff Steps, photographed on May Day. A poor man’s madeleine, of sorts.

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After the Workhouse

I returned to the John Stork Problem this morning. It isn’t going to be resolved anytime soon.

I did some more delving and found a snippet of pedigree that gave the cuckoo in the Filey Stork nest the correct parents – Henry and Hannah NETTLETON – but hasn’t yet married John to Hannah STEEL.

I also found “Right John” (after the system had initially denied his existence and I’d created an ID for him). This seems to do a good job of the children he had with Sarah HARPER but also gives him an earlier wife called Sarah TWINHAM. She has borne three children after her death but there’s another reason for her being “iffy”. I think she married a Thomas PICKERSGILL in York.

John’s true first wife, Sarah HARPER, gave birth to eight children before dying in 1864 aged just 37. FamilySearch Tree gives her mother’s name as “Mrs Margaret Harper”. In looking to confirm this, I turned up several christening records of Sarah and siblings being born to Robert Harper and Rebecca.

Five Harper children were born in Bridlington between 1818 and 1830 but I have only been able to find two of them in the 1841 census. Sarah, 15, and her younger brother Richard, 12, are in the Bridlington Workhouse. They are not listed together in the enumerator’s book, but their ages fit very well with their christening dates. What became of the parents and other children?

Sarah may have been resourceful, or perhaps life dealt her some better cards in her later teenage years. She met agricultural labourer John Stork and married him in 1849 when she was 23 years old. At the 1851 census, they are recorded in High Street, Bridlington, with their first child, Emily.

Their youngest child, Sarah, was only two years old when mother Sarah died. John married again the next year. Ann CHAPMAN may have been a good stepmother, and in 1871 she was also caring for Fanny CHAPMAN, a nurse child. This may have been the daughter of a brother because a birth registration for Fanny gives the infant’s mother’s maiden name as WATKINSON.

John and Sarah Harper’s seventh child, Rebecca (perhaps named after her grandmother), married John MOORE, a fisherman who later worked as a brickmaker’s labourer.

They had eleven children, of whom nine reached adulthood. John and Rebecca are remembered on a handsome stone in St Oswald’s churchyard. It stands quite close to the grave of Rebecca’s Uncle Robert Stork. Her father, “Right John”, has a Filey burial record but no known grave.

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A Companion for Today’s Robin

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I snapped this chaffinch in Crescent Gardens this morning and didn’t notice its warty feet until I processed the photo. It seems finches of several species are prone to Fringilla papillomavirus (FPV). The condition is also called papillomatosis or, colloquially, fur foot or bumblefoot. The “warts” don’t seem to affect the general health of the birds but may accumulate to such a degree that perching becomes problematic – and feet are sometimes lost.

Brother John

Robert STORK, son of Luke and husband of Margaret CHAPMAN and Rachel HUMPHREY, (and Filey’s Bellman for 28 years), had a younger brother, John.

John appears on the FamilySearch Tree as Robert’s brother and married to Anna STEEL. In Kath’s database, Filey Genealogy & Connections, brother John has two wives, Sarah HARPER and Ann CHAPMAN.

(There is another pedigree in FamilySearch Genealogies supplied by James Mutzelburg that favours John marrying “Hannah”.)

In the Bridlington Parish Church marriage register, the father of Hannah Steel is given as William, a miller. John’s father is Henry, a labourer. If this record is accepted at face value, this John is not Robert the Bellman’s brother.

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Eight years after the wedding, in High Street Bridlington, William Steel is living with his daughter and son in law, and two of their children – George and Jane Ann. William gives his birthplace as Eastrington. I think he is the William christened at Laxton, near Goole, in January 1794, the son of Robert and Elizabeth. A Burton Agnes marriage in 1817 to Elizabeth MASSENDER is possibly the union of this John’s parents.

The other John married Sarah HARPER in 1849 and two years later she gives her birthplace as Haisthorpe, near Burton Agnes. Sarah’s parents were possibly Robert and Rebecca.

To give you the two sets of children now would be confusing. I’ll just say that FST John may have had more children than he is given and some of those listed appear to have wayward birth years. Kath hasn’t given Luke Stork’s son John all his children either. I found two more.

The two Johns had one thing in common. They were both familiar with the inside of the same magistrate’s court.

FST John first…

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In 1871, John and Hannah gave their address as “The Hall, Haisthorpe”. Thirteen miles away, John is enumerated in King Street with five of his children and a nurse child, Frances CHAPMAN. His second wife, Ann Chapman, (not the mother of Frances), was away on census night. The household also contained a lodger, John McGURK, an Irish bootmaker.

And just down the street lived brother Robert and second wife Rachel Humphrey.