One of Many

The body of one sailor was recovered from the sea near Gristhorpe Wyke and buried at Filey St Oswald’s in an unmarked grave. The Reverend Arthur Nevile Cooper knew his name and age but not his nationality.

He is TROBAK in Filey Genealogy & Connections and the Shared Tree has plenty of them  – but none called Ludwig. It seems to be a Norwegian family name and Ludwig goes well with it. (A preference for TREBAK will take you to another part of Europe with less ready access to the sea.) Christiania on the burial register was the capital of Norway and the home port of the vessel from which Ludwig was lost. Something else the vicar knew.

Edith BENTLEY was twenty days old when she was baptised by a Wesleyan minister at her parents’ home. When she was nine months old her father died. At fourteen months, her younger brother George made the briefest of appearances and not long after her second birthday her older brother William died aged three.

Row 7 | 1175 Bentley D87

In memory of GEORGE BENTLEY, the beloved husband of ELLEN BENTLEY, who died Aug 2nd 1870 aged 24 years.

Also, two sons of the above, WILLIAM died Jan 25th 1872, aged 3 years, GEORGE died Jan 8th 1871, infant.

Crimlisk Survey 1977

I have not been able to discover the cause of George’s early death. Ellen and Edith “disappear” and may be challenging to locate because Ellen (or Mary Ellen) perhaps married again. Edith also had an older sister Annie, registered as Annie Bentley AGAR in the June Quarter of 1866. She is with widow Mary Ellen, William Agar and Edith in Mosey’s Yard, Filey, when the enumerator called in 1871.

Stone 32 · Martin’s Ravine

Flower 29 · Hawthorn Blossom

Jane’s middle name let people know who her father was. Two years after her birth, her mother married Jacob MARTIN. It says a lot about the couple’s love for each other – Jane had lived for just a few months. Filey Genealogy & Connections gives Jacob and Annie two sons, Edward and Jacob, but their father is still awaiting his life partner on the Shared Tree.

John PEARSON’s birth year is in cautionary red because his birth year, calculated from his age at death, is six years earlier than a fairly convincing baptism record at Ruston. The Scalby marriage register notes that Jane’s husband was “of Wykeham”, the next village to Ruston. The couple were apart on census night 1851. Jane was a “lodger” with her son Charles in Wenlock Place, Filey. I haven’t looked for John’s whereabouts.

Sarah Edith was Tom SMITH’s sister. Tom had married Hannah Elizabeth ROBSON at St Oswald’s in 1906. She is a woman of mystery for FG&C and the Shared Tree.

The husband of Marian SAYER is something of an enigma too. He was a widower when he married Marian but I have been unable to find his first marriage – and I am not sure when and where his life began. Here is his last resting place –

Sadly, Marian died about six months after she married John Arthur.

The Three Wives of John Pearson

John was the son of Charles PEARSON and Martha SIMPSON, and stepbrother to Wrightson who drowned from the yawl Integrity (Friday’s post). Today, on the FamilySearch Shared Tree, he is a single man.


His brides-to-be can be found, though not easily.




Filey Genealogy & Connections offers two wives, Elizabeth (with a ‘zed’) Baxter and Jane, but Kath notes the existence of Wife No. 2; “not sure which Elizabeth he was married to – choice of a few”.

Elizabeth Baxter was 30 years old when she married and 39 when she died in 1874. There are no indications in the records that she gave birth to any children. In 1871, the enumerator gave her age as 36, five years older than John, and her birthplace Filey.

Ten years later, John’s wife is Elizabeth, given age 43, but her birthplace is omitted. In 1891, the couple is living with John’s father and the transcriber of the enumerator’s book has all three born in Norfolk. This is a wilful misinterpretation of a blizzard of dittos, in the middle of which Charles’ birthplace stands out – Goathland, which we know isn’t in Norfolk but rather the Yorkshire birthplace of John’s mother, Martha. The 1901 census asserts that Elizabeth was born in Filey and again her given age is the same as John’s. This age consistency across three censuses bolsters confidence when we search for the Elizabeth JENKINSON John married in 1875. In FG&C there are three possibilities, born in 1839, 1841 and 1843. The younger two have married other men. The Elizabeth born in the same year as John is a Filonian and waiting for her Mister Pearson, so she must be our gal.

I continue to seek a “clincher” but have enough certainty to proceed with marrying John to all three women on FST over the next few days.

John was a Filey character. The Scarborough Mercury tells us so.

Friday 10 January 1908

Mrs. Pearson, wife of the sexton, of the Parish Church, died on Wednesday evening at about seven  o’clock, at her home in Church  Hill. She had been ill for some time.

Friday 31 December 1909

Another misfortune was the death which took place yesterday of Mr. John Pearson, the old sexton. So well known was he that his death, which came suddenly at the end, was regarded as a town’s matter-for the sexton was almost part of Filey. Visitors to the Parish Church will have seen him frequently. He was an aged man, well on to 80 years, and was quite a character in his way. He had been poorly for some little time past, and had been medically attended. It is thought that he had had a fit during the night, and died. Just over a year ago he was married for the third time. It was thought, at first, that there would be an inquest, but as he had been medically attended, it was deemed that an inquiry was not necessary. He had been sexton for very many years.

Poor John. Too unwell, perhaps, to enjoy the short time he had with Jane, a woman 21 years his junior.

It seems strange that a sexton for so many years at St Oswald’s does not have a marked grave in the churchyard.

The 1911 census caught Jane visiting retired coal dealer William WATKINSON at 3 Belle Vue Street, Filey, occupation dressmaker. The only death registration I have found that fits her closely indicates her passing in Pontefract, in 1934. (I did look for her marrying again, without success.)

3 Belle Vue Street this afternoon

I suppose John’s “failure” to honour the genetic imperative accounts for his remaining a bachelor on FST for so long. However, one of his houses had rung with young voices. In 1901, he and Elizabeth the Second had two servants aged 11 and 12 – Rose and Melita OLDBRIDGE, born in Lincolnshire. I have looked, but have found nothing more about these girls.