Small Transgressions

The funeral of David BURR senior took place 127 years ago. Weathering has smudged some of the letters on the headstone that remembers him, his first wife Isabella and two of their daughters, but it still looks imposing. He worked first as a chimney sweep before entering the ranks of carriage proprietors. (Pun intended – couldn’t resist.)


In loving memory of DAVID BURR, who died 26th April 1891, aged 65 years.

Also ISABELLA his wife, who died 6th Jan 1874, aged 43 years.

Also MARY, daughter of the above, who died 9th Dec 1865, aged 15 years.

And REBECCA who died in infancy.

‘With Christ which is far better.”

Isabella gave birth to 10 children. The youngest, James, was three when she died. David wasted little time providing his offspring with a stepmother, the twice-widowed Elizabeth BURNHAM. She would see the arrival of all but a couple of David and Isabella’s thirty or so grandchildren before her death in 1903.

David was born in Huntingdonshire but married Isabella in Lincolnshire when he was 21. Two years earlier, at the Louth Sessions, he had been found guilty of stealing a chimney sweeper’s brush and soot cloth and sentenced to “one calendar month, and once privately whipped”.

After marrying, David and Isabella crossed the Humber and their first child was born in Snainton. By 1854 they appear to have settled in Filey and, as a carriage proprietor, David found himself transgressing the Local Board’s bye-laws. On two occasions, in 1882 and 1886, he was brought before the Bridlington Petty Sessions with John COLLEY and fined a few shillings – for causing an obstruction outside their premises in King Street, and for “canvassing for fares by drawing their carriages off the authorized stands”.

David clearly has a lot of descendants and some may be scattered across FamilySearch Tree but he doesn’t have a presence yet. I found his father today and provided him with a wife but to see a more extensive pedigree you will have to check in at Filey Genealogy & Connections.

John BURR  on FST, and on FG&C.