I initially warmed to the Reverend William when I discovered he’d been baptised at Mappleton Church, a mile or so north of his birthplace in Cowden. My parents had a caravan (of sorts) on the Mill Field at Mappleton and, when on holiday there, I walked past the church several times a day on the way to and from the beach. It seems neat that he should end his days in Filey, as I am likely to do.
I also learned that his grandfather had been one of William CLOWES’ first converts in my hometown, Hull in the 1820s. I attended the Primitive Methodist Chapel in Stoneferry as a child and, as a young man, went up to Mow Cop one wild, windy night after I learned of the early Ranters’ Meetings there.
I was surprised to find William had married three times – and taken aback when I looked for him on FamilySearch Tree and saw him hitched to a fourth woman, Elizabeth Ann ALSTON.
William’s birth family seemed to be all present and correct and at the time of the 1901 census, he was living only eight miles away from Elizabeth Ann and the cotton spinning William Moore.
“Our” William was in Wigan, mourning the death of his first wife Annie Elizabeth COWAN about six months earlier. The other William and Elizabeth Ann were childless in Chorley.
Here is a newspaper report of the wedding of William and Annie Elizabeth just five years earlier.
Ten years later the Reverend was staying with his younger brother, James, in Hull. With him were second wife Margaret FISHER and their surviving child, William Henry, aged three. Margaret died about 18 months later, in West Derby – where William married Catherine NICHOLSON in the second quarter of 1916. They moved to Filey in 1919 and each died aged 78, William in 1944 and Catherine in 1955. Their last home, “Hillston”, was in Belle Vue Crescent.
There are photographs of William and Catherine, and more information, here.
Listmaking duties yesterday brought this family unit to my attention. Thanks to the kindness of a LORRIMANdescendants, I was already familiar with some of the people and sensed immediately that there was something amiss with the picture presented by FamilySearch Tree.
The FST system wasn’t concerned that “Sarah Duckells” was 48 years old when she gave birth to Harry and one research suggestion was to look for a missing child between Frederick and Sarah A. Hardly any of the many sources available online have been co-opted to build this family. Just two or three of them, well-chosen, would transform the family. Father William, for instance, married Sarah BUCKLE in the summer of 1859 and died twenty years later, not long after the birth of Frederick.. Sarah’s maiden surname is given as Buckle for each of her eight children in the GRO Index. (Missing from the family, left, is Charles, born in the third quarter of 1874.) The 1891 census places the family in Albion Place, Filey and clearly indicates that Sarah A, Annie and Harry are grandchildren of widow Sarah. She told the enumerator they had been born in Filey but a careful search of the GRO Births Index indicates that the girls are sisters, born in York, to Sarah Buckle’s son William LORRIMAN and Sarah Ann ROBSON. I haven’t been able to find a birth registration for Harry (or Henry) so, until evidence to the contrary is discovered, will consider him to be the brother of the two girls.
Sarah Ann ROBSON married William LORRIMAN in York, in early June 1883. The birth of their first child, Sarah Ann, was registered the following quarter. Young Sarah joined a half-brother, George Arthur ROBSON, who had been accepted by William as his own.
Towards the end of April 1884, when he was three years old, George took advantage of his mother’s fleeting absence (to talk to a neighbour) and drank the contents of a medicine bottle she had left in the middle of the kitchen table. It isn’t clear from a local newspaper report of the coroner’s inquest what ailed the mother. The bottle, however, contained strychnine in the smallest of concentrations – but enough to kill a toddler. Little George staggered into the backyard, fell over and damaged a leg. It was thought initially that this was his only injury but he began to spasm. Someone ran for a doctor who arrived quickly, sensed the damage was internal and gave the lad emetics. These did not help, so the doctor dashed back to the surgery to get something that would control the spasms. When he returned, the child was dead.
Dr Hill, who supplied the medicine, had not given the mother special instructions about the danger the liquid would pose to a child. It contained eight doses, of which Sarah Ann had taken three. One dose would have been enough to kill George.
The jury returned a verdict of “Accidental death by poisoning”, and the Coroner, at their request, impressed upon Mr Hill the desirability of cautioning patients, particularly when young children are about, to whom he prescribed medicine that contained poisonous ingredients.
Yorkshire Gazette, 3 May 1884
Learn how strychnine was once thought to be good for you (in very small doses) here.
I don’t know what became of George’s half-brother, Harry. Sarah Ann, pictured below, married James MILNER in Tadcaster in 1905 and bore him four children. James died young and Sarah raised the children mostly on her own.
Annie married Alfred Henry Pritchard, an Essex man, in 1912. They raised their small family in Canada.
Annie and Alfred with children Gladys, William and baby Frederick (known by the family as James and the father of Brenda Pritchard, who donated the photo to Looking at Filey).
Annie and Alfred are buried in the small town of Kars, Ontario.
I will add to the World Tree as soon as I can. Meanwhile, find “Sarah DUCKELLS” here.
I’ve updated my inventory of the St Oswald’s headstone photographs. A couple of months ago I reported 899 photos processed, 49% of the total required. Today those figures are 1,075 and 61%.
There are just 48 headstone photos on the Looking at Filey Wiki and I’ve uploaded 43 to FamilySearch Tree as Memories. Only four photos are in both places, so my next task is to synchronize!
I’m compiling a list of ‘family units’ associated with the churchyard graves. Progress is slow. So far I have listed 1,200 individuals, only 35% of whom have FamilySearch Tree IDs. I signed in to FST yesterday intending to create IDs for a large family – and discovered that someone has recently done the work. A pleasant surprise.
My attempts at organizing the Headstone Project have been accompanied by listening to news and analysis of what is going on in the world. Entertaining and tragic by turns.
Today began with a Tommy Robinson rant and his appeal for viewers to sign an online petition.
This afternoon, Tommy put out an update. Watching both videos will take 30 minutes out of your life (that you’ll never get back) but I hope you’ll take a look. They are not “about Tommy”. They’re more to do with the UK’s quickening slide into becoming a failed state. (This may not be so terrible, in the context of a failed planet.)