Monday, November 28, 2016

The family of Thomas Boam 1768-1822

This page for my Families of Winster book  was probably the hardest to make so far because I know so little about Thomas Boam , my 5x G Grandfather - he is the last generation before civil registration and censuses teach us so much more about our ancestors.
He probably was a Lead miner, like his sons and grandsons but I can find nothing to confirm that. He may have lived in Woolleys Yard as his descendants did, but again, nothing I have found confirms this - so the page below is simply what I know of him and his family and Winster, where he lived his whole life.

Thomas Boam was born in 1768, and baptised on 23rd October 1768 at St Johns the Baptist Church in Winster, the son of James Boam and Ann Allen.  He was the 4th child and second son of the couple. Little is known of his early life, however a large proportion of the population of Winster was employed in the nearby Lead Mines. Certainly Thomas’ sons James and Thomas and those of several generations following him, were Lead Miners.
On 29th June 1790 Thomas married Martha Walker, who was the daughter of Adam Walker and Sarah Ohme, also of Winster.
Very soon after their marriage their first son James was born, and was baptised on 28th December 1790 .
Thomas and Martha went on to have at least 6 children including one who died as an infant in 1808.
Both Thomas and Martha died in the same year 1822 . Martha died first on the 4th  June and was buried in St John the Baptist churchyard 2 days later on 6th June of that year.
Just a few months later in October, Thomas also died and is buried in the same churchyard as his

Winster changed considerably during the term of Thomas’ life. Mining had brought immense prosperity. Between 1720 and 1770, Winster's population had grown to more than 2,000 and over 20 inns had sprung up. Most of the houses, now standing in Winster, date from those times. But the huge amounts of ore extracted eventually rebounded on profitability. By the late 18 century, the London Lead Company found their Derbyshire operations too costly and sold their Peak District concessions in 1778.

By the end of the 18th century, most of the mines had closed, with only two continuing to operate into the 19th century. Population returns dramatically reflect the industrial decline. In 1789 the population had declined to little more than 1000 and by 1801 there were only 750 people in the village

Saturday, November 26, 2016

The Family of James Boam 1740 - 1799 6x Great Grandfather

This page will replace the previous Boam pages I had done as the first Boam page in my series as I unfortunately discovered an error in my previous research and the James I thought was this James was not !- That James had died as a child but his death record had previously gone un noticed.

My James - it appears was an illegitimate son of Sarah Boam from Darley Dale and we arent positive who her father is, though it could be Hugh Boam - I believe these people are all descendants of Henry Boam or his siblings from my earlier post but more research will have to be done to prove it

This is the journalling from the layout above.

It is thought James Boam is the illegitmate son of Sarah Boam of Darley Dale. Sarah was probably the daughter of Hugh Boam from the same village, however records are not clear enough to be sure.
James was baptised on 9th March 1740 at St Helens Church in Darley Dale. Where he spent his childhood is unknown but he married Ann Allen in St John the Baptist Church, Winster on 14th May 1764.
James and Anns first 3 children were born in Winster, James and Samuel in 1764 and Thomas in 1768, however Samuel sadly died in the same year Thomas was born.
What James occupation was is unknown but it is clear that the family came upon hard times because in 1769 there is a Removal order for James, his wife Ann and their children James and Thomas. The removal order dated 18-01-1769 for "James BOAM  -  wife Ann and children James abt 4 and Thomas abt a  a year". to be removed from the parish of Winster, back to Darley Dale, where James had been born.
The removal order would have been based on the  poor law Act of Settlement and Removal. The Settlement Act allowed for the removal from a parish, back to their place of settlement, of newcomers whom local justices deemed "likely to be chargeable" to the parish poor rates.  Each person had a Parish of Settlement. This was the parish that a person was entitled to live in , and the Parish would often take responsibility for the poor in their own parish, however they did not want responsibility for those who were from elsewhere.
Clearly James and his family needed financial aid and could not provide for themselves at this point in time.
 It is unknown if the Removal Order was enforced, but in any case by 1771 James and Ann and their family were back in Winster, as all the remaining children were born there.
It is likely James gained employment in the Lead mines in the area. Winster was a village with man lead miners in its population. Mining brought immense prosperity to the town . Between 1720 and 1770, Winster's population had more than doubled to 2000  and over 20 inns had sprung up.
James was buried on Christmas Even 1799and is buried at St John the Baptist churchyard in Winster along with his wife Ann who  died just over 3 years later in February 1803.

The family of David Wilson 1747-1795 - updated- and the family of Simon Wilson

Its been a busy week genealogically speaking for me.
This was prompted by my last weeks layout on David Wilson and the discovery of a whole new branch of the family which necessitated me redoing last weeks layout

David Wilson was my 6x Great Grandfather. He was baptised at Longnor Staffordshire on 22nd November 1747, and married Jane Sleigh at Alstonefield . Very early in their marriage they lived at Under Longnor Edge, probably in the same house or close to Davids father who also lived at this location, however before long they moved to Dunbrook, where most of their children were born, and remained there for the rest of David’s life as his burial record attests. After Davids death, Jane remarried to William Slack but they dont appear to have remained in the district.
It is unknown what occupation David held, however we do know from his marriage record that he could at least write as se has signed his name. The marriage of David and Jane Sleigh was witnessed by Peter Wilson who was Davids brother .
We do not know for sure what occupation David held but it is likely he was either a farmer, or a miner, or even a stone mason, as his son Simon was and his grandsons Edward and Isaac.  based on the location of his cottage at Dunbrook, and the occupations of his children some of whom became lead miners.  Davids son Joseph, my 5x Great Grandfather, was the first in my direct line to move to Winster in Derbyshire.

The cottage that the Wilsons probably lived in along with its detached 2 story barn, at Dunbrook is still standing and though it has had significant modernisation, it still retains the character it likely had when it was lived in by my 6x Great Grandparents David and Jane had a total of 9 children. The eldest, Elizabeth, baptised as Betty was born while the family still lived at Under Longnor Edge however all the rest were born at Dunbrook .Later it seems youngest son Simon, with the help of his son Issac, built another house just across the road - a more modern 2 story stone cottage which he left in his will to his son Edward.  One of the conditions of the will was that if Isaac wished to build a similar house Edward should pay half towards it. Apparently Isaac took his father up on that offer, because now 2 stone houses are on the same property. Isaac stayed at Dunbrook until 1866 when he emigrated with his family to New Zealand.

I will probably do a separate layout which covers the following information about Simon - but before I forget all Ive learned this week I will post it here

While there is no record of his birth, it is presumed that Simon Wilson - who is living at Dunbrook in the 1841 and 1851 census is the son of David Wilson.
Unfortunately we are not likely to ever prove this conclusively as the records from the church at Longnor where Davids children were all baptised are missing several years covering the period where Simon was born, however the fact he is living at Dunbrook, and his children all take names strongly linked with Davids family ( including one named David) would indicate that our assumption would be correct.

What we discovered is that there is more than one house at Dunbrook - we originally thought just the old cottage now known as Poole Cottage was where David lived.
However we also discovered a cottage called Dunbrook Cottage- this apparently is a 19th century dwelling so probably not Davids,- it is far more likely he lived in the cottage above, which dates from the 1700s  The house below - called Dunbrook cottage was most likely built by Davids son Simon who was a stone mason

On the same section as Dunbrook Cottage, just behind it hidden in the trees is another very similar house called Dunbrook House

From Simon's will we know that he left his house to his son Edward, and that his son Isaac had helped him build the house . One condition of this was that Edward should pay for the building of another house for his brother Isaac if Isaac wished.

One of the two houses is obviously the first house that Simon and Isaac built, and the other is the one Isaac built after his father died . 
We know Edward was for some time living at Dunbrook as there seems to have been an disagreement between Simons daughter Elizabeth and Edwards wife Jemima 

However Edward is not living at Dunbrook in any of the census records- In 1861, 1871 and 1881  he is living at Sheen ,about 3 miles away. 

Here is a transcription of Simon Wilsons will

This is the last will and Testament of me Simon Willson of Dunbrook in the township of Longnor in the parish of Alstonfield in the County of Stafford. First I direct that all my just debts funeral and testamentary expenses be paid by my executors hereinafter named out of my personal estate. I give and bequeath subject to the privisoes hereinafter made until my son Edward Willson his heirs and assigns for ever All that my freehold Dwellinghouse in which I now reside situate at Dunbrook aforesaid together with one morety or have part and sall be set off and divided by my executors of my Cow house, Coal house Garden adn Croft with all rights roads and appurtenances thereunto belonging I give and bequeath unto my son Isaac Willson his heirs and assigns for ever all that other morety or half part of my said cow house coal house garden and croft as shall be set off or divided by my executors with all rights roads and appurtenances thereunto belonging provided always my will and mind is that if in case my son Isaac shall within Twelve calendar months make up his mind and elect to erect therafter upon the premises hereby bequeathed to to him a Dwellinghouse I do hereby charge my Dwelling house which is bequeathed to my son Edward with half the cost of the materials and workmanship of the masonry plastering flagging tiling or staking for a similar dwellinghouse as to value as that now in my occupation. This charge I consider equivalent to Issacs share for help in the erection of my dwellinghouse but in the event of my son Isaac Willson electing to receive the sum of Forty Pounds at the end of Twelve Calendar months next after my decease in lieu of the half or morety of my cow house coal house garden and croft and for the share of building materials and workmanship as a ove provided and charged I wish my son Edward or his heirs and assigns to accede to the terms and pay that sum to my son Isaac in lieu of his morety and Building Materials as above bequeathed to him with charge for workmanship and the erection of a Dwellinghouse and the release of my said son Isaac his heirs and assigns shall be a good discharge to his brother or his heirs or assigns for the same after which being executed my son Edward or his heirs and assigns will take the whole of my real property. Provided further in the event of either of my daughters Elizabeth or Sarah being left Widows and needing a dwelling house my wish and desire is and I do hereby will and bequeath that one or both of them my said daughters as the case may happen may have free use and tenure during her life or lives respectively of my parlour and my bedroom over my parlour with ingress and egress to and from the said rooms without any payments of rent whatever or it may be optional with all parties concerned for my son Edward his heirs and assigns to allow rent to one or both of my said daughters equivalent to the value of the above named rooms for her or them to reside elsewhere in case of needing a Dwelling house in widowhood only and as to the rest and residue of my property whether in Money Book Debts Stock Implements or other effects whatsoever, except tools which I wish my two sons to take equally between them, I hereby give and bequeath the same to be equally divided between my two daughters Elizabeth and Sarah as soon as convenient after my decease.  I dp hereby nominate constitute and appoint my two friends Joseph Millward and Joseph Grindey both of Tunstead in the township of Longnor aforesaid Executors of this my last will and testament and direct that they shall be the arbitrators in the division of my cow house coal house garden and croft as herein before declared I do hereby revoke and make void all former and other wills by me at any time heretofore made and declare this alone to be my last will and testament contained on two sides of this sheet of paper in witness whereof I have to this my last Will and Testament set my hand this third day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and Sixty. 

Isaac marries Ann Chedwick   in Alstonfield before heading to Lancashire to an area which is now part of Downtown Manchester, for reasons yet to be known, however likely to be work related as the people around him are all in the brick, stone  or masonery business. 
After his fathers death in 1860 he is back in Dunbrook with his 6 children, but by the end of 1865 he had made the decision to emigrate to New Zealand and the family with wife and 5 children  packed up and left the small village his family had lived in for over 100 years and aboard the Mermaid they arrived in Canterbury on 1st January 1866. 
Isaac and Ann had 2 more children in New Zealand before Isaac died in Christchurch aged only 59 in 1879.

Simons daughter Elizabeth had already emigrated to New Zealand in March 1860. Later she married a second cousin - David Wilson Hamilton, who had also chosen to emigrate to New Zealand sometime before. David Wilson Hamilton, owned a house, “the Grange”, and was proprietor of a coach service, the precursor of the tramway system, which ran from Sharlands Corner via Stanmore, Shirley and the New Brighton roads to the New Brighton Hotel in Seaview Road where he was “mine host”.

My thanks to Dawn Scotting and Hugh Stark for their assistance in this research which will no doubt be ongoing!


Saturday, November 19, 2016

The Family of David Wilson 1747-1795

This is another page for the book I intend to create featuring the branches of my family who moved to and lived at Winster in Derbyshire.
This page features David Wilson my 6x Great Grandfather, son of Francis Wilson of Longnor, Staffordshire  whose page I did previously.

Again as noted previously because this era had records which featured very little information , not much is known about the day to day lives of this family, however their address of Dunbrook, Longnor gives a good clue as in the early 18th century there were very few buildings in the area and Dawn Scotting (from whom the vast majority of the research on this family was done) has ascertained that the house which David Wilson built is still standing .
The other exciting thing to note is David is one of the most distant ancestors of whom I have a copy of his hand writing - which came from his marriage record.

David Wilson was my 6x Great Grandfather. He was baptised at Longnor Staffordshire on 22nd November 1747, and married Jane Sleigh at Alstonefield . Very early in their marriage they lived at Under Longnor Edge, probably in the same house or close to Davids father who also lived at this location, however before long they moved to Dunbrook, where most of their children were born, and remained there for the rest of David’s life as his burial record attests. After Davids death, Jane remarried to William Slack but they dont appear to have remained in the district.
It is unknown what occupation David held, however we do know from his marriage record that he could at least write as she has signed his name. The marriage was witnessed by a Peter Wilson. I am unsure who Peter is as from our records, this was not the name of any of David’s brothers or Uncles.
It is likely he was either a farmer, or a miner, or even a stone mason, based on the location of his cottage at Dunbrook, and the occupations of his children some of whom became lead miners.  Davids son Joseph, my 5x Great Grandfather, was the first in my direct line to move to Winster in Derbyshire.
The cottage that the Wilsons lived in along with its detached 2 story barn, at Dunbrook is still standing and though it has had significant modernisation, it still retains the character it likely had when it was lived in by my 6x Great Grandparents David and Jane had a total of 9 children. The eldest, Elizabeth, baptised as Betty was born while the family still lived at Under Longnor Edge however all the rest were born at Dunbrook .
It appears the home stayed in the family as an 1834 trade directory has a Simon Wilson, Mason living there, and he remained there for the remainder of his life, as shown in both the 1841 and 1851 censuses and his death record in 1860.
From the 1851 census it would appear that Simon was  born in 1788 or 89 so could have been a child of David and Jane but I can not find a birth record for him at all , however the records around this time are quite damaged and pages appear to be missing so Simon could easily be the son of David and Jane. 

Monday, November 14, 2016

The Family of James Boam 1679-1753

Unfortunately after completng this layout it appears that this is not my branch of the family. It was thought that my branch descended from James 1783 who married Ann Herdsfield - and then down through his son James, however James 1783 son James died as a child so this can not be the case.

Heres my third page for the book Im producing on the branch of my family who lived in Winster, although with this instalment the family is still yet to reach Winster, This covers the family of James Boam and his wife Grace nee Fern who were from Bakewell.  It is with James son that the family finally makes the move to Winster.
Almost nothing is known of James Boam, son of Henry Boam and Joane Plant, who was baptised at Bakewell All Saints Church on 21 Dec 1679. Unlike his brothers Hugh and Francis, James remained for his life in Bakewell.
On 28 January 1707 he married Grace Fern, also of Bakewell and they had 8 children, that we are aware of over the next 18 years.
Again little is known about these children except for their baptism, marriage and death  records. The last 4 of James children died as children or infants , the second child Ann, died without marrying aged 30 before both her parents, and Grace born 1711 was widowed not long after she married. I have no information on what happened to her after her husbands death. Only the two sons John and James survived their parents and had children themselves. 
All the children were baptised at All Saints Church in Bakewell. The church in Bakewell had been in existence for hundreds of years before the Boam family baptised their children there.  The church dates from Saxon times with additions throughout the next 800 years.
.In the early 18th century there was an attempt to attract people to Bakewell with the building of a Bath house. Nearby Buxton had a thriving economy which was assisted by travellers visiting the warm spring . James Boam would have seen the building of the Bath House, however which was built in 1697 by the Duke of Rutland  However, at 15°C, Bakewell’s spring was much colder than Buxton and the venture was not a success.
As stated almost nothing is known of the day to day  lives of the Boam Family at this time and we do not know what industry James Boam was involved in, however his younger brothers Francis and Samuel had moved their families to Winster by the mid 18th century so it is possible the family were involved in the lead mining industry.
Lead Mining along with wool, had been  one of the largest earners for the wealthy of the Derbyshire Peak District from as early as the 13th century. The surname Fern, that of James’ Wife Grace is associated with the Mining industry in nearby Bonsall. By the middle of the 18th century though, Lead Mining in the Bakewell region was in decline, and the Manners family who lived at Haddon Hall had moved to their Leicestershire Estate and this vastly impacted the economy of the region as their estate was a large employer of the local population.
This could account for why more members of the Boam family seemed to make the move to the Winster area.
James and Grace however seemed to stay in the Bakewell area, James death is listed as March 1753 and he was buried on the 7th of March in that year, at All Saints Bakewell, 8 years after his wife Grace had died in April 1845 and was buried on 28th April 1845.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

The families of Winster Book - The family of Francis Wilson 1690- 1795

My last layout was the first I had done for a book Im planning on the families of the branches of my family tree who lived in Winster in Derbyshires Peak District.
I started last week with the Boam family and today I start with a branch that marries into the Boams - the Wilsons.
I must thank and acknowledge Dawn Scotting for her work on researching this family that we share.
I have started with Francis my 7x Great Grandfather.
Of course once again we know very little about the day to day lives of our ancestors back in the 17th century, but Dawn has pieced together as full a story as we can write based on the little information at hand which consists almost entirely of birth, marriage and death records.

The Family of Francis Wilson 1690-1795

Firstly, the dates of birth and death above are NOT a typo. Francis Wilson, my 7x G Grandfather did in fact live till the amazing age of 105. His age was noted in the burials in the parish records at Longnor Edge  where he died on 11 March 1795.
He was born miles away in Eccleshall, Staffordshire to father Francis and mother possibly Elizabeth, but when he moved to Longnor is not known except that it before 5th October 1728 when he married his first wife Elizabeth Burton . Together they had 8 children, and then Elizabeth died weeks after giving birth to the 8th child James.
With multiple young children, Francis need to remarry and he did to Mary Redfern, on 7th May 1747 . Mary and Francis went on to have at least 6 more children.
It is noted on the baptism records of Francis’ children that he lived at “Under Longnor Edge” 
Top of the Edge is a hill area on the outskirts of Longnor Village and at the bottom of the hill, at the end of High Street, there are a small group of very old cottages. I wonder if Francis and his family lived in one of these cottages.
Eccleshall, Staffordshire is over an hours drive from Winster on modern roads, so for the family of Francis Wilson in the 18th century it would have been a long distance away, however the family moved progressively closer to Winster over the next century. It wasnt until 2 generations later that the family end up living in Winster.  As we know so little about the daily lives of people this long ago we can only surmise as to why Francis moved from Eccleshall where he was born to Longnor where he married his first wife Elizabeth. This was a huge distance away . The walk between the two would take over 10 hours, but he was definitely a resident in the village of Longnor when he married so had not just moved there in order to marry.  Perhaps his trade was more needed in Longnor than Eccleshall. From Longnor the distance to Winster is much less ,so the various branches of the family would not  had more than a 3 hour walk across the hills of the Peak District.

Monday, November 7, 2016

The Family of Henry Boam 1650-1697

Unfortunately - after creating this layout evidence came to light to prove that my line of the Boams might not extend down from Henry and then through James 1679 as previously thought.
more research is ongoing ...

- In preparation for my trip to the UK next year I decided to embark upon a book covering my Winster based families.
Im starting with the Boams and will cover the Wilsons and others I can find enough information on before I go

The hard thing about doing layouts and books about these ancestors is I know very little of their day to day lives so stories are limited and the layouts are basically just covering facts which can be a bit dry and boring.
Hopefully the book will end up not being too boring!!
Im starting with Henry Boam born 1650 in Bakewell. It was his sons who appear to be the first in the family to move to Winster.

Henry BOAM was baptised at All Saints Church Bakewell, Derbyshire on June 30 1650. The baptism register is written in Latin and he is named as Henricus and his father as Samuelus Boam. It is thought that Samuel was born 1623 also in Bakewell, and died 1674 but it is not known who Henry’s mother was.
Little is known of Henry’s life but it is know that he married Joan PLANT at St Giles Church, Great Longstone, Derbyshire on 29 June 1676. Great Longstone is about an hours walk across the hills from Bakewell.
Records are sparse , but it is known that Henry had at least one older sister, Dorothy (1647-1656)
Henry is thought to have had 8 children. Some have Joan listed as the mother but others list no mother, but one assumes she was the mother of all the children.
Records show two sons named Samuel so the assumption is the elder Samuel died and the younger Samuel was named after him.
It was around the mid 18th century and the early stages of the industrial revolution that mining became important to the Derbyshire region, this could be why several of Henry’s children moved their families to Winster.

The Family of Henry Boam 1650-1697

In preparation for my trip to the UK next year I decided to embark upon a book covering my Winster based families.
Im starting with the Boams and will cover the Wilsons and others I can find enough information on before I go

The hard thing about doing layouts and books about these ancestors is I know very little of their day to day lives so stories are limited and the layouts are basically just covering facts which can be a bit dry and boring.
Hopefully the book will end up not being too boring!!
Im starting with Henry Boam born 1650 in Bakewell. It was his sons who appear to be the first in the family to move to Winster.

Henry BOAM was baptised at All Saints Church Bakewell, Derbyshire on June 30 1650. The baptism register is written in Latin and he is named as Henricus and his father as Samuelus Boam. It is thought that Samuel was born 1623 also in Bakewell, and died 1674 but it is not known who Henry’s mother was.
Little is known of Henry’s life but it is know that he married Joan PLANT at St Giles Church, Great Longstone, Derbyshire on 29 June 1676. Great Longstone is about an hours walk across the hills from Bakewell.
Records are sparse , but it is known that Henry had at least one older sister, Dorothy (1647-1656)
Henry is thought to have had 8 children. Some have Joan listed as the mother but others list no mother, but one assumes she was the mother of all the children.
Records show two sons named Samuel so the assumption is the elder Samuel died and the younger Samuel was named after him.
It was around the mid 18th century and the early stages of the industrial revolution that mining became important to the Derbyshire region, this could be why several of Henry’s children moved their families to Winster.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

DNA Update

Here is my latest update on the branches of my family tree that I have confirmed with DNA.
The lastest confirmation was a small match to another descendant of my 4x Great Grandparents William  Garbett, Born 12 Jun 1796, Little Wenlock,Shropshire,England; Married Elizabeth Powell Born 3 Sep 1786 Dawley, Shropshire, England on 12 October 1818. 
Elizabeth had been previously married, and widowed. Her first husband was John Sandlands , who she married in 1808 and had at least 3 children to before he died in 1817
They were:
Robert Sandlands b 1810,
Ann Sandlands b 1812 and
John Sandlands born 1814

Elizabeth and William had 7 children together. 
William Garbett b.1819-1898
Michael Garbett b1821-1898
George Robert Sandlands Garbett 1823-1899
John Garbett 1825-1900
Elizabeth 1827-1844
Samuel 1829-1875
Mary Ann 1831-

I descend from Samuel Garbett  and my match descends from George Robert Sandlands Garbett 
George Robert Garbett joined the Mormon church and emigrated to America .
Samuel Garbett followed his fathers lead and became a miner, eventually rising to become a Chartermaster.

This DNA match is very small and without being able to investigate further I am taking it at face value - however I hope my match will upload their DNA to Gedmatch so we can look further into the DNA and find some common matches 

Based on this last match I have now confirmed 7 out of 8 Great Grandparents and 10 out of 16 GG Grandparents. - Not bad going!!

Monday, October 31, 2016

Benjamin Boam 1864-1887 and the Tragedy of the Mill Close Mine

I hope to be lucky enough in mid 2017 to visit the village of Winster where many many of my fathers ancestors once lived. The Boam family have a long history in Winster and many of them were Lead Miners.
In starting some pre-trip research I discovered the story of Benjamin Boam who died in an explosion at the nearby Mill Close Lead Mine .
I hope to photograph his headstone myself in the Winster Churchyard but in the mean time I found the wonderful work of Michael Greatorex who has photographed many if not all the gravestones there including that of Benjamin which you can see here

Benjamin was born  in 1864 in Winster. I have yet to find his baptism record but he was the second son and 5th child of Thomas Boam  and Mary Wilson. Thomas was also a Lead Miner, as was his father also named Thomas.
Benjamins 2 younger siblings, Lucy and Harriet both had died in childhood, so Benjamin was the youngest child of Thomas and Mary at the time of his death.

I created a simple layout for this sad story which is directly taken from a newspaper account of the day.

Benjamin Boam was the 2nd son, and 5th child of Thomas Boam and his wife Mary Wilson. He was the younger brother of my GG Grandmother Mary Jane Boam.  Benjamin was a Lead miner, like is father, and his grandfather and many many of the men in the village of Winster, Derbyshire  where he was born. He was employed at the Mill Close Mine, in nearby Darley, where a shaft had been sunk in 1860 and was one of numerous men who worked below ground in shifts around the clock.
On November 3 1887 the mine would take the lives of 5 of the men of Winster including that of Benjamin Boam

Shocking Accident at Mill Close Lead Mine  Five Men Killed

From  what  can  be  ascertained  it  appears  that  a  shift  was  commenced  at  midnight  on  Wednesday.  There  would  be  twenty-one  or  twenty-two  men  on  duty.  Before  they  began  work  the  mine  had  been  officially  examined  by  the  deputy,  William  Webster.  He  found  a  quantity  of  gas  in  the  heading,  and  duly  reported  the  occurrence  to  the  company  who  took  the  particular  route in which the explosion happened. The men were in charge of Job Stone, and the company was known as Stones's. They were warned of the presence of gas on going down. It seems they were  engaged  on  the  top  level,  or  84  yards  from  the  surface.  The  distance  they  had  to  travel  underground  was  between  500  and  600  yards  before  reaching  the  face  of  the  rock.  Upon  a  portion  of  the  road  they  would  be  able  to  use naked  lights,  but  were  compelled  to  have  safety  lamps  whilst  at  their  work.  There  were  for  getters  and  two  waggoners  working  in  the  stall  or  heading,  and,  unfortunately,  all  the  six  were  within  measurable  distance  of  the  force  of  the  explosion. Had it happened a few minutes earlier or later the waggoners would have been away from the spot conveying the ore to the exit from the mine. There was nothing perceptible of the approaching  danger  when  the  men  began  their usual  occupation.  Several  shots  of  dynamite charges had been fired. This powerful explosive is regularly used at the mine to blow down the rock, with which the ore is mixed. The heading is about six yards high, and a charge of dynamite
is inserted into a hole which is drilled for it. The charge is fired with "touch", and the men retire out  of  danger,  as  they  consider.  They  would  move  away  to  a  distance  of  about  40  yards.  The  shot went off in the usual manner, and was immediately followed by a terrific explosion of gas. The force of the concussion was felt all over the mine, the head trees, forks, and scores of tons of rock being removed. The fall of bind killed the men, debris covering them.
The shock was not felt on the surface, and it was not until one of the men, Marsden, who is injured, made his way
in the dark to the bottom of the shaft, that the disaster was known. He was the only one spared to  tell  of  the  sad  accident  which  befell  his comrades.  The  men  engaged  in  the  heading  were  Robert  Marsden,  Birchover;  Job  Stone,  Elton; George  Stone,  Elton;  George  Allen,  Winster;  Benjamin  Boam,  Winster;  and  George  Needham,  Wensley.  Boam  and  Needham  were  the  waggoners.  They,  as  we  have  previously  said,  were  unfortunately  along  with  the  other  group  when  the  gas  was  ignited.  The  lights  were  all  blown  out  with  the  force  of  the  explosion,  but  Marsden, though injured, made his way in the darkness to the bottom of the shaft. He signalled
to be drawn out, and then the intelligence became known. He displayed conspicuous bravery by going down the shaft again along with a stoker named George Boam. These two men were thefirst to venture down the mine. They were stated to have felt the effects of the after-damp, but not  to  any  serious  extent.  The  explosion  took  place  a  few  minutes  before  three  o'clock.  It  was some  time  before  any  of  the  bodies  were  discovered.  Lights  were  procured  and  a  search  party  was quickly formed, under the leadership of John Heathcote. He arrived on the premises about five  o'clock,  and,  being  one  of  the  deputies,  organised  the  relief  party.  Messengers  were 
despatched  as  quickly  as  possible  to  Mr.  Joseph  Greatorex,  of  Winster,  the  agent,  who  was  speedily  at  the  mine.  A  verbal  message  was  also  sent  to  Mr.  A.M.  Alsop,  of  Wirksworth,  the  manager.  When  Mr.  Greatorex  arrived  he  took charge  of  the  search  party,  and  went  down, finding  the  deputy  there.  It  was  discovered  that  the  men  were  almost  entirely  buried  in  the debris.  The  bodies  were  fearfully  crushed.  After  the  bind  had  been  removed  the  remains  were  brought  out.  The  first  person  to  be  conveyed  up  the  shaft  was  Job  Stone,  who  could  be  seen  under  the  refuse,  but  was  quite  dead.  In  the  meantime  Dr.  Stubbs,  of  Darley  Bridge,  and  Dr. Cantrell,  of  Winster,  were  summoned,  but  their  services  were  of  no  avail  except  in  the  case  of Marsden,  who  was  bruised  about  the  head.  He  was  taken  to  the  Warren  Carr  Farm,  and,  after  attention,  conveyed  home.  The  men  were  sent  up  as  speedily  as  possible,  and  taken  to  the office.  There  they  were  stripped  and  laid  on  stretchers.  The  bodies  presented  a  shocking  spectacle, being fearfully crushed. It took until seven o'clock to recover all the deceased miners.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

DNA Verified Ancestor Update

Ive had quite a few DNA matches in the last few weeks and several who have verified branches of my tree. As you can see from the chart above I have had much more success with my mothers side than my fathers, and I put this down to having had my mother and several of her cousins tests done as well.
I have now verified all my grandparents, 7 out of 8 of my Great Grandparents , and 9 out of 16  of my GG Grandparents which I think is remarkable given DNA testing is quite new in New Zealand.
I am almost certain seeing that I have confirmed Samuel Middlebrook as my GG Grandfather that would also mean that I am descended from his wife Mary Jane Rea, but as yet havent had a confirmed DNA match to the Rea family to prove it completely.

A second cousin on my Dads side has just tested and another 2nd cousin on that side has also promised to test so that could help confirm more branches on my fathers side.
I hope that in a few more months, and as DNA testing becomes more popular both here and in the UK I will see more matches either confirming or disproving my research.

Monday, October 3, 2016

The Boyt-Mathias Branch - Deciphering the DNA

Todays post is a visual account of the research I have done on the various DNA connections my family have to the Boyt family tree. - All names of living people  have been replaced with initials for public viewing but I have a version with full names for family to view privately.

The various DNA connections relating to my 3xG Grandmother Jane Boyt and her parents William Boyt and Mary Mathias are one of the best examples I have of how important it is to test as many people in your family as possible, and how valuable each and every test is in determining the validity of the researched relationships.
My paper research had formed the basis  of my family tree with a confirmed birth  certificate for my Great Grandfather Phillip Goodwin whose parents were James Goodwin and Mary Ann Gleeson. James birth was slightly more difficult to prove as there was no registered birth in the correct time frame for  James Goodwin, and his marriage certificate was from a year before the time when parents names must be provided. Family lore said James father was William Henry Goodwin who had been a soldier in the 58th Regiment. There was in fact a gravestone in Ngaruawahia for W.H. Goodwin ex the 58th regiment along with his wife Jane. Before long it was established that W.H Goodwin was infact Henry Goodrum and had married Jane Boyt, the eldest daughter of William Boyt (who was a Fencible living in Onehunga) and his wife Mary Mathias.  I did in fact then easily find the birth for their son James who was registered as James Goodrum.
The first DNA proof I was on the right track was a match to R.G who was a Grandaughter of James’ younger brother Samuel Henry Goodrum/Goodwin. She matches me with 46cM . This is a low result for our relationship of 2nd Cousins 2x removed, where the average match is more than double at 84cM. My mother matches her with 63cM, again around half of what you would expect for the relationship. However JG and LG match her with 188cM and 183cM respectively - quite a bit higher than the average.  The matches between RG and the rest of us confirmed  a common ancestor - and the most recent would be W.H Goodwin and/or his wife Jane Boyt. The next Boyt family match came soon after - V.M. is a Great Granddaughter of Susannah Boyt, Jane’s younger sister. Both JG and LG match VM, but RG, my mother and I do not appear to have any match at all.  Without JG and LG’s tests we would not be able to confirm the link which took the DNA proof of relationship back one generation to Janes parents William Boyt and Mary Mathias. Subsequently 3 more matches appeared, to J.F, a GG Granddaughter of Jane’s youngest brother Henry. JF matches all 5 descendants of Jane at varying amounts from  7.1cM with myself to 38.7cM with LG.  Next came a match to a JVP- GG Grandson of Henry Boyt. He matches with only LG, JG and RG but not with my mother nor I . Then most recently a match with CH and his daughter MH, who matches with RG, JG and LG but again not with my mother and me.
Combining the results of all the tests proves beyond any reasonable doubt that we all descend from either of William Boyt and Mary Mathias or both of them - the parents of all 3 of the Boyt Children.

My Mother is first cousin to both JG and LG who are sisters. She matches LG at 1023cM and JG at 866cM which confirms their relationship as 1st cousins and I match my mother as expected as with a parent child relationship.
It is clear to me that the Boyt portion of DNA that was passed down to J.G and LG was recombined differently with my mother who did not inherit nearly as much, and therefore I received very little.  My children may have no DNA connection tto the Boyts at all which is why its so important to me to reasearch my tree using tools of genetic genealogy as well as traditional paper research now.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

The Secombe Brothers

Todays post continues with the research on the newly confirmed branch of my tree. That of the Secombe family. You will remember from previous posts, based on DNA connections we have finally confirmed that my 2x G Grandfather William McClellan was in fact William McClellan Secombe. He came from a family rich with Coastguard and Navy history.
Thomas Seacombe lived a life firmly based around the Sea. He was from a very young man, employed by the CoastGuard, and before that the Maritime Revenue Service.  There are many with the name Secombe to be found in the records of the Coastguard and the Navy, including Thomas’ own grandfather Mark who fought in the Battle of Trafalgar on the HMS Tonnant.  Thomas clearly loved the life, and passed the love onto his sons who each appear to have a history of  seafaring adventures.
In a letter of application for the youngest son Lewis, Thomas’ wife Isabella states that she wishes nothing but a life for Lewis on the sea as it was the life of his father and all his brothers. While I have yet to find records for all the sons, most indeed appear to have spent a good part of their life with the British Coastguard or Navy.

William McClelland Secombe
William appears to be the first child of Thomas and Isabella and was born on the Isle of Whithorn on 17 March 1833 and was baptised a month later. His first maritime record appears to be entering Naval Service when he signed up for 10 years service, on the 1st November 1860. He was posted to the HMS Ajax. Little more is known of the next 10 years except that he was involved in a disasterous storm which took place in Kingstown harbour during which the Captain of the Ajax drowned. Later records find him as crew on coastal traders in Australia, one of which was the Fairy Queen, which in 1873 wrecked in Timaru harbour. It is at this time it appears William gave up his life on the sea and it was probably at this point he changed his name to William McClellan. He settled first in Pleasant
 Point,and later in Woodville and married Elizabeth Brodie and had one son, William McClellan.

Alexander Secombe
There has been no record of Alexanders birth, His parentage and place of birth comes from his later records. Alexander states he was born in 1840 on the Isle of Whithorn Scotland, like his elder brother William. The first we officially know of him is in Australia. His arrival date and method of arrival in Austrlia is unknown but members of the family suspect he jumped ship from a Naval vessel. By 1860 though, aged just 20 he is the proprieter of the Miners Arms Hotel in Georgetown, Queensland Australia, so it can be certain he didnt complete his naval service if he did in fact sign up. In 1864 Alexander married Melvina Rachel Vincent and they had 9 children . He died not long after the birth of his last daughter Georgeana, the cause of which was apparently suicide aged only 45.

Mark Secombe
The Naval records of Mark Secombe are more complete than those of his older brothers .Also born on the Isle of Whithorn, he signed on as a boy, 1st Class on 15 Dec 1859 when he joined the Ajax. Initially volunteering for a term of 10 years he re engaged in 1870 in order to serve long enough to obtain a pension. He served on many ships including the HMS Ajax, HMS Edgar, HMS Blenheim and Excellent, HMS Pearl and Duke of Wellington and HMS Penelope, which appears to be his last posting before retiring from the Navy. Mark married Elizabeth Mulholland in 1875 and they went on to have 11 children in the next 14 years, before Mark died in 1889, the same year his youngest daugther was born. In 1881 Mark is listed as a Naval Pensioner and hsi wife Lizzie as a GreenGrocer. They are living in Walton Suffolk. Mark died aged only 47 in Aug 1889.

Andrew Secombe
The records for Andrew Secombe state he was born in Portaferry, County Down, Ireland. This ties in with his fathers posting to Ireland after he joined the Coastguard.  Andrew volunteered as a Boy 2nd Class in June 1861 for a period of 10 years ( from the age of 18)and then like is elder brother Mark, he also extended for a further 10 years from October 1874.
Like William and Mark, Andrew started his service on the HMS Ajax and also served on the HMS Defense, Excellent, Victory,HMS Terrible, Duke of Wellington, Euphrates, Lord Warden and HMS Favourite.
Andrew married Emma Chaston in Duffus Scotland in 1875 and they had 2 children, Edgar and Daisy .
In the 1881 Scotland census he is living in Aberdour, Aberdeenshire and is listed as a Coastguard and he dies in Suffolk in 1884 aged just 38.

Lewis Secombe
Lewis Secombe was the youngest child of Thomas and Isabella. He was only a child when his father died in 1864 and Isabella was instrumental in his life on the sea. In support of his application as a Boy 2nd Class ( aged just 15) Isabella wrote “ Newtonwards, Ireland, 9th October 1867. I am writing, Sir, that my son is joining the Navy, as it is the only life I wish for him. His father and all his brothers were in the same too, and as I am alone, Sir, I trust the Lord will teach him his way and make him a good boy. Your humbled servant, Isabella Seacombe. Lewis was born in Ballywater County Down, Ireland and served on many ships including HMS Scout, Chameleon, Pembroke, Fox and Royal Adelaide .The last record for him I have confirmed is as an inmate in HMS Wakefield Prison where he is serving 7 days hard labour for drunkenness and states he has also been in Bodman prison. It is not know if he married.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Thomas Secombe: A Man of the Sea.

Having now confirmed with DNA that my 2x Great Grandfather, William McClellan was in fact William McClelland Secombe, I felt it appropriate to start to do some serious research on his ancestors.
His father, My 3xG Grandfather was Thomas Secombe.
Much research has been done already on the Secombe family, and I would like to acknowledge the work of Maureen Gates and Peter Symms. Maureen sent me a lot of information, much of it sent to her by Peter Symms from the UK, and I have also downloaded a large number of records of the British Coastguard from the Royal Archives today to learn as much about Thomas as I can.

I find it useful to create a timeline for my ancestors as a starting point to further research and so here is one for Thomas Secombe.

1809: BIRTH: Polruan, Cornwall 3 March 1809. ( Year varies on records)
1825: ENLISTMENT: Signs up with Royal Navy .
1831: CREW: Is crew on HMS Diligence, a RevenueCutter 18th Oct 1831
1832: CHOLERA: 26 July 1832 on shore at Cholera Hospital
1832: MARRIAGE : 9th Nov 1832 to Isabella McClelland at Stranraer, Wigtown, Scotland
1833: BIRTH: of Son WILLIAM MCCLELLAND SECOMBE 9th Nov 1833 at Isle of Whithorn, Wightownshire, Scotland
1838:DISCHARGED: From HMS Diligence due to nomination to join Coastguard.
1838: JOINED :Coastguard at Bangor Station, Ireland
1840: BIRTH: of son ALEXANDER SECOMBE at Isle of Whithorn, Wigtownshire, Scotland.(No record found but date from later records of Alexander)
1841: BIRTH: of son MARK SECOMBE 9th Nov 1841 at Isle of Whithorn, Wigtownshire, Scotland
1842:APPOINTED:  To Coastguard station Tara, Strangford, Ireland, position Boatman 10 Aug 1842
1843: BIRTH of daughter ELIZABETH SECOMBE location unknown but possibly Ireland.
1846: BIRTH of son  ANDREW SECOMBE 6 Oct 1846 at Portaferry Northern Ireland
1850:PROMOTION:27 Sept 1850 promoted to Revenue Man and transferred to Rodden Stn, Donghadee, Ireland
1851:BIRTH of son JOHN SECOMBE, Donghadee, Ireland
1852:BIRTH of son LEWIS SECOMBE 13 Oct 1852, Donghadee, Ireland
1854:RECALLED to Royal Navy due to Crimean War. Posted to HMS Calcutta and sailed to the Baltics
1855:DISCHARGED: From HMS Calcutta,and transferred to HMS Pembroke
1856:PAY 1s6d per day RANK Commissioned Boatman
1856:TRANSFERRED to HMS St Albans
1856: DISCHARGED St Albans to rejoin shore based position at Rodden Station Donaghadee, Ireland July 1856
1859:GOOD CONDUCT BADGE: Received  1 Mar 1859
1861:GOOD CONDUCT BADGE: Received 1 Jan 1861
1862: DEATH: of Daughter ELIZABETH SECOMBE, Age 19 at Greyabbey, Newtownards, Ireland
Buried at Church of Ireland, Balligan, Ireland.
1862:DEATH: THOMAS SECOMBE died 24 Mar 1862 at Rodden Stn, Donaghadee, Ireland, Buried at Church of Ireland, Balligan, Ireland with his daughter Elizabeth.

Monday, September 19, 2016

SOLVED: The Mystery of William McClellan aka William McCelland Secombe

Todays post is another DNA success story.

William McClellan, my GG Grandfather was a bit of a mystery man.  Family Lore had him arrving in New Zealand by way of a Shipwreck- The “Fairy Queen” which came ashore in a large store in Timaru in 1873. He went on to marry Elizabeth Lennie nee Brodie, my GG Grandmother, who had very recently become widowed  when her husband John Lennie died, and she was left with a young family to raise. It was thought that William had been living with the family since the shipwreck.   
We knew where Wiliam was born and this was a reseachers godsend . The Isle of Whithorn, in southern Scotland is not a large town, however there were a couple of William McClellans or McClellands born around the same time as our William. Frustratingly though, all those could be traced well after the time that our William was married and living in New Zealand.
William had become a member of the Salvation Army during his time in New Zealand and in his attestation he had noted that he had been a “Man-0’-War’s Man” in other words he had been in the Navy.
The first major clue came in a search at the British Archives  for William McClellan from the Isle of Whithorn bought up only one result. That was for William McClelland SECOMBE, who was the right age, and had signed on and been posted for a period of 10 years being assigned to the CoastGuard vessel Ajax.
The signature of William Secombe was very similar in style to that of our William McClellan.
While we were researching the origins of our William, in Australia descendants of Alexander Secombe were looking for a missing brother- they had been looking for years for the sons of Thomas Secombe and Isabella McClelland. They had found most of the children :
William McClellan (d) Secombe b. 1833 Isle of Whithorn;
Alexander Secombe no date approx 1835 Wigtown, Wigtownshire;
Mark Secombe b. 1842, Isle of Whithorn;C/G
Elizabeth Hannah b.abt 1844, Portaferry Co.Down. Died 1862 Grey Abbey the same year as her father.  Both buried from the Balligan Church.
Andrew b. 1847, Portaferry Portaferry Died 1884 Suffolk C/G
Louisa Straines b. 1849, Taro Portaferry
John b. 1851 Ballywalter;
Louis (Lewis) b. 1852 Ballywalter. 
Most of the children had ben traced however the fate of William had been a real mystery to them.
t seemed that we might be on the right track but there was no proof our our theory. The records pertaining to the “Fairy Queen” which might have the crew list had been burned in a fire at Archives in Wellington in the 1950s. There were apparently no outgoing records for the voyage fron Newcastle Australia where it originated. Frustration began to set in. Then out of the blue came another clue . It seemed I was not the first in my family to be tracing the origins of William McClellan. His son, named after him, put an advertisement in the Lloyds London Newspaper’s Missing Persons column. In it he states : From New Zealand- The brothers of WILLIAM McCLELLAN OR McCLELLAND,     who left the Isle of Whithorn when very young and was “one of the crew saved from the lifeboat accident when Captain Boyd was drowned in Kingston Harbour” are sought by W. McClellan,
This was the key piece of evidence. Captain Boyd was in fact the Captain of the Ajax. The coastguard vessel that William Secombe had been posted to .  Later that month I found in Australian shipping records William Secombe of Whithorn Scotland on a coastal trader out of the Melbourne area in the very early 1870s .
With circumstantial evidence building combined with the great likeness between the photo of Mark Secombe to the single photo we had of who was likely to be his brother William it was frustrating to have no paper evidence, however science was to be the final definitifve proof.
That came with a small DNA match between my mother and the descendant of one Loveday Secombe.
As shown in the chart to the right Loveday Secombe was the Great Great Aunt of William McCelland Secombe, and her descendant who matches my mother is a GGG Grandson of Loveday Secombe.  Their common ancestor is John Secombe born abt 1732 in Mawgan in Meneage, Cornwall, England who would be my 6x Great Grandfather making the match my 5th cousin 2x removed.
Though the circumstantial evidence abounded, it is almost a relief to finally have some scientific proof that the research I have done over the years has proven to be true. We are in fact related to the famous singer and comedian Harry Secombe and descend from a family who’s history is entrenched in the history of the Royal Coastguard, and now I have a whole new family history to discover.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

DNA Match Update

I thought it was about time I updated my DNA chart showing the ancestors I have confirmed.
As you can see Ive confirmed all 4 of my grandparents and 7 out of 8 great grandparents so Im feeling like I am getting somewhere with confirming the paper trail I have been working on so long.
I have confirmed 9 out of 16 GG Grandparents ( Sadly I have yet to make progress on my Brick Wall GG Grandmother Mary Ann Gleeson who is the reason I originally decided to take the DNA Test .
9 out of 32 GGG Grandparents are confirmed along with 14 4x G Grandparents .
What I find most interesting is that a great proportion of those ancestors I have managed to confirm are of a scottish background. I wonder if Scottish DNA is more "sticky" than other nationalities!!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

The Children of Henry Goodrum and Jane Boyt

Today's post is a non photo post which I created to help the confusion around the children of my 3x Great Grandparents William Henry and Jane Goodwin.
There are many issues in trying to trace their children, as William changed his name during the course of his life from Henry Goodrum, and some of the children are registered as Goodrum and some Goodwin and some arent registered at all. All of the children marry as Goodwin, though some I have failed to find proof of.

Journalling reads:

Tracing the children of Henry and Jane Goodrum/Goodwin, has not proven to be easy at all.  In fact not all of the children were registered and those who were registered are split with some registered as the child of Jane and Henry Goodrum, Jane and Henry Goodwin, and Jane and William Henry Goodwin. It doesnt help that there was another Auckland with the name William Henry and Jane Goodwin.     The death certificates of both Jane and Henry state they had 7 living children at the time of their deaths. We know at least one child had predeceased them , which means they had at least 8 children.    I am not sure I have them all represented on this page  however these are the ones I have researched .

Mary Jane 8 Dec 1852-4 Nov 1940
Mary Jane’s birth does not appear in the official NZ birth records, however her baptism with the surname Goodrum, is mentioned in a book about St Peters Church in Onehunga. In 1883 she is married in Wellington to William John Crichton, though why she was there is a mystery. She and William had 7 children between 1870 and 1886, and after William’s death she married  George Teakel, in Auckland in 1906. Her obituary mentions her father was WH. Goodwin of the 58th Regiment.
William Charles 1854 ? - ?
 There is no birth record, nor a confirmed death record for William Charles, however we know he existed and was still living in 1912 as he is the executor and a beneficiary of his fathers will. We know at the time of the writing of the will he was living in Waimai. There are 2 trees on the internet which place his birth at 1854, however I have been unable to confirm this. The electoral roll entries have no wife listed as living at the same address so I am unable to ascertain if he was married at any time.
Sarah Ann 1858 -20 March1927
Sarah Ann’s birth is registered as Sarah Goodrum (parents Henry and Jane) in 1858. She married Edward John Moffitt who was a neighbour of her parents near Ngaruawahia, in 1878 and had 4 children, 2 boys and 2 girls John Henry who died aged 17, Edward John Jr, Elinor and Eliza Annie.  Sarah lived most of her life in Ngaruawahia and died at her daughters house in Te Aroha aged  67.
George Peace 1859 -1922
George’s birth does not appear to have been registered. We can ascertain his birth from his marriage certificate . He married Mary Kogan on Sept 5th 1883 and his age is listed as 24. His birth place is listed as Auckland but he was living in Thames at the time of his wedding. His parents are listed as Henry Goodwin and Jane formally Boyd (instead of Boyt). His name is listed as George, but on the birth record for his son his middle name is listed as Peace. (His son is named the same name George Peace Goodwin. George and Mary had at least 10 children but George is charged with wife desertion in 1898 so it appears he wasnt always the best provider for his family.
The youngest child, Leslie John was born after this date in 1904 however no birth record for him can be found so I am unsure if he was the son of George.
James 3 Sept 1860 - 14 Sept 1898
James was born in Newton, Auckland, according to his birth record. His parents were listed as Henry Goodrum and Jane nee Boyt.  James married Mary Ann Gleeson in Hamilton in 1880. James worked for the Railways and was involved in building the main trunk line south, including the bridge over the Waikato river. James and Mary Ann had 10 children including one who died in infancy of measles. When the railway reached Te Awamutu, James felt he could no longer keep moving his family so he left and took up farming and sharemilking in Newstead, Hamilton. Sadly though, not long after that, in September 1898 James died of Acute double Pneumonia, aged only 38 years old.
Henry 1863 - 1930
Henry was born in 1863 and his surname was Goodrum - Parents Henry and Jane.  He was married (as Henry Goodwin) on 7th May 1894 to Marjorie Mahon. On his marriage certificate he names his parents as William Henry Goodwin and Jane Goodwin formerly Boyd. They had 4 children, Zela Theodora Gertrude, Walter Casper, Milton Watford Gorange, and James Henry Mahon before Marjorie sued for divorce in 1913.  I have not found any evidence of Henry remarrying after his divorce . He died in 1930 aged 67.

Samuel Henry 27 Mar1866 - 15 Sept1926
Samuel was born with the surname Goodrum, parents Jane and Henry in 1866. He  and his eventual wife Letitia Meekin have a son Francis Henry in Auckland in 1898 a full 7 years before Samuel and Letitia eventually marry (like his siblings before him marries with the surname Goodwin) in 1905. They went on to have a further 6 children The electoral rolls indicate Samuel was a labourer, and lived primarily in Ngaruawahia  until his death in 1926 aged 60
Joseph 1868 - 1955
Joseph was born in 1868 with the surname Goodwin,  parents William Henry and Jane.  He marries Sarah Miller in Drury in   1900 and they raised an adopted daughter. The marriage however is an unhappy one and Sarah leaves Joseph on multiple occasions and becomes pregnant with another mans child, and is also arrested for prostitution on more than one occasion.  Joseph divorces Sarah in 1917.   He did not remarry. Upon his death, his estate was claimed by a Cecilia Sutcliffe who claimed to be his daughter. One would assume she must have been  the child that had been adopted before Joseph and Sarah’s divorce.
Unknown or Unnamed 1871-1871
I have no details of this child, which was not registered, except for an entry at NZ Archives of a letter from the Hamilton coroner regarding the Stillborn infant of William Henry Goowin. The letter is dated 16th October 1871.

On the death certificate of Jane in 1913 there is listed the ages of the surviving children as Males 60, 55, 46, 43, 40 and Females 61 and 51. I have tried to tally those ages with the children I have researched.
61 - Mary Jane ; 60 William Charles ( this might indicate he was born a year earlier than we think)
55 - could be George ; 51 -Must be Sarah Ann even though she was actually 55; 46 ( this could be Samuel, but is probably Henry even though the age is 4 years out- Henry would have been 50) 43 - Is the wrong age again for Samuel as he would have been 47; 40 - Joseph was actually 45 at the time of his fathers death.
Due to the confusion it is entirely possible there is another child I have yet to find

As a side note to this layout, I am descended from James and I have a DNA match to a descendant of Samuel Henry. There is also a DNA match to descendants of a sister of Jane Goodrum/Goodwin nee Boyt, confirming her as my 3x G Grandmother.  I hope over time more matches can be found to confirm my Goodwin family tree .

Monday, August 1, 2016

George Allington - A Man of the Land and for the Labourers.

George Allington (brother of my 3x G Grandmother Sarah Ann Allington) really was the instigator of the Allington family's emigration to New Zealand.
He was, like many others and his father before him, an agricultural labourer.
It turns out he was quite an important man in the formation of the English Agricultural Labourers Union.

England’s farm labourers had been coveted by New Zealand right from the founding of the colony. From the 1870s this was about to change. Rural England in the nineteenth century presented to the world a unique social arrangement in the three-tiered system of landlord, farmer, and landless labourer.  A combination of social and economic changes had, since the middle of the eighteenth century, turned the majority of village labourers into servile, demoralised men The 1850s and 60’s weree known as the ‘Golden Age’ of English agriculture. The demand for food grew with the steady rise of population in the industrial cities, and England was still dependent on her own farmers for the bulk of her supplies. With heavy capital investment and increasingly skilled management, output rose almost as fast as the population, so that it is estimated that as late as 1868 no less than 80 per cent of the United Kingdom's food was home grown.18 Squires and farmers prospered as never before, but the labourers' share of the wealth they toiled to create increased very little. Socially, the country world remained a class-ridden hierarchy. Over these years the labourer was finding the farmer an increasingly remote and unsympathetic master. By the mid-century it had become the general rule that farmers took no part in the physical work of their farms. It was al done by the poorly paid labourer, tied to his parish by legal acts of parliament. The quality of the labourer's cottage varied widely, but too often it was wretchedly small and badly built. In the 1850s nearly half of all cottages had only one bedroom, some had only one room. In many the floors were of clay, which became sodden when it rained. The often hungry labourers could not even provide meat for their family by way of wild game as this was by law a sport for the upper class Huger and resentment drove many labourers to flout these class laws. They could not even gather firewood without permission.

The result of this discontent was the formation , led by local Warwickshire man Joseph Arch, of the National Agricultural Labourers Union. One of the twelve agricultural labourers who served as foundation members of the executive of the National Union was George Allington, the Primitive Methodist lay preacher from Stretton-on-Dunsmore. He was an early delegate of the union and, in two years of travelling on its behalf, visited twenty-two counties. In mid 1872, for example, he formed the first district branch of the union in Dorset. At this early stage he apparently hoped that the village labourer would quickly acquire the franchise, and change rural England by means of his voting strength. The Dorset County Express of 9 July 1872 quoted him as telling ‘the rich, that an increase in wages is not all we want; we want, and we intend to have, the franchise, and we intend sending working men to represent our interests’ in Parliament. Sadly due to his efforts to gain a better lot for his peers, he was fired from his own job, and at that point he applied for a job with the Union.

Given the predicament of the English farm labourer and the nature of his revolt, it is not surprising that the New Zealand authorities looked to the movement with such hope. Their new land was hungry for men accustomed to hard labour, and gifted in the rural skills. The best of England's farm labourers were demanding adequate food, decent homes, the chance to better themselves and secure a stake in the land, and the right to be treated with full respect as free men. All these the distant colony could offer to men of energy and determination. Almost simultaneously the New Zealand emigration drive and the union organisations of the Revolt began to reach out into the English rural world, to recruit the village labourer. One of those recruited was George Allington. In the autumn of 1874 Allington recruited a party of some 200 agricultural labourers to accompany him to New Zealand. On Sunday, 20 September 1874, he preached his farewell sermon in Stretton Primitive Methodist Chapel, where he had worshipped for many years. The party leaving the small village included at least four married couples, and totalled at least sixteen persons (many of them members of George’s extended family) In all, fifty emigrants from this part of Warwickshire were farewelled at Leamington station on the morning of 22 September, by Joseph Arch and a large crowd of other well-wishers.

George  settled in the Canterbury rural township of Rangiora, where in 1882 he is shown as owning the freehold of land worth £120.6 The rolls of the Kaiapoi electorate show that he spent the rest of his life as a labourer residing on a quarter acre section in Rangiora. After almost exactly thirty-eight years of quiet colonial life, this man who had carried the torch of the Revolt through twenty-two counties died almost unnoticed on 29 December 1912, at the age of 83.

The plight of the English labourer of the mid 1800’s was put most clearly by George Allington in his speech at on of the many meetings he spoke at in his 2 years of travelling on behalf of the Labourers Union.

 Mr. Chairman, friends, and fellow working men, we are here tonight to talk about a matter which affects the interests and well-being of the general public as well as the interests of agricultural labourers ; and I think if people will look at it as they should, on both sides and top and bottom, they will see it is a question affecting the well-being of this country of ours. We want to discuss this matter in a fair and honourable way, and if there be any farmers in this meeting — and I hope there are — we are not, I hope, the enemies of the farmers. If they can confute my arguments, they shall have a fair and patient hearing, and I will reply. Now, what is the agricultural labourer’s position ? They may be paid 9s., 10s., or 11s. a week. In Dorsetshire, where I started a union, there were men receiving 9s. a week, some 8s., and a few, a very few, 7s. a week. In other counties you will find men receiving los., iis., 12s., 15s., i6s., up to i8s. and a pound a week, some 22s. in Yorkshire. But, taking the general aspect of the labourer’s condition, is it what it ought to be ?
Does the condition of the labourers on the soil reflect any credit on our country.? If not, then I think it is one which honest, industrious, agricultural labourers have a just right to complain of and to mourn. What is to be done ’to effect a better state of things ? Some said, let the labourers go to their employers themselves, not let middle men come in.
I have been a labourer ever since I was eight years of age, and I know the condition and difficulties of the working men. All your life long you may toil, but in old age nothing but the workhouse stares a labourer in the face, and at last they will put him into a pauper’s coffin and a pauper’s grave, while others have reaped the benefit of his industry. When workmen have gone to their employers without intervention of middle men, what has happened ? It generally happens thot there is one man on a farm who has to speak to the master for himself and the other men. With regret I say it, the farmers generally have not had the honour to call their men together and discuss the matter respectfully, and to say to the men — “I wish to strike a just bargain with you, and I will pay you a fair wage so that you can live —live in comfort.”
No ; but the man that asked for the means to live has been singled out in thousands of instances. I could give names, places, circumstances, where they have tried even to get other men turned out of their employment and out of their cottages. Seeing that such conduct is perpetrated towards working men, what are they to do ? With the present price of commodities, what are we to do if we are to maintain ourselves and our families respectably ? When men have used every legitimate means to induce farmers to give them a fair wage for their industry, and cannot succeed, what are they to do ?
The greatest obstacle to the rise of the agricultural labourers is their ignorance — ignorance of their own power when united in one strong compact body. We have been taunted with our ignorance, but whose fault is it that we are so ? Our parents never received enough money to enable them to send us to school ; and yet the very people who kept them down have said we are an ignorant class of men. That, I think, is cruel in the extreme. There is as honest a heart in the breast of agricultural labourers as in those of the farmers ; and give the labourers the means of living in comfort, and they will feel as much interest in the education of their children as the farmers take in that of their sons. There is as honest a heart beating in the breast of the labourer as in the breast of a mechanic ; and he has as much regard for his wife and his family as any other man in Old England.
Is there a man here who will say that twelve shillings a-week is enough to support a man and his wife and family as they ought to be, taking into consideration the price of everything we have to buy ? These are the questions gentlemen should ask themselves ; and if they think a man cannot live with it, then they ought not to meet to form associations to crush a union which means directly to benefit the lower order of society, and to injure no one above it.
Ought they to do it ? The day is dawning, my friends, when the working men of England will not submit to the tyranny which has been brought to bear upon them in the past. The unions of mechanics have helped a great deal in educating the minds of workmen to the power of union. Trades unions were the starting-point towards the emancipation of the British labourer. I am thankful for penny papers which circulate in the country. They are powerful engines for the diffusion of useful information ; and in these papers, selling by thousands, the working classes are taught that they have a right to live.

A farmer in Warwickshire said to me, when I was talking about the desirability of labourers’ children being educated, and saying it was a disgusting thing, when a man had four or five children, that he must send the little boys, almost as soon as they began to walk, into the fields to scare crows, or tend pigs, or drive horses, depriving them of that education which God intended they should have, for if God gave us intellects, He intended they should be cultivated and developed, — this farmer said — “What do the labourers‘ children want education for ? Enough if they can write their names and count twenty.” We do not want to have recourse to harsh speeches to carry on a noble cause like ours ; but I say it with all due respect to farmers — there are honourable exceptions — but the great proportion of them have entertained the same sentiments respecting the education of our children as this farmer said to me — “ Keep them in ignorance if you want to keep them down.” It is said that if the men have more money they will squander it away at the public-house.
How do they know that ?They only suppose such a thing. I am bound to say it, from an honest conviction, that there are as moderate men, as temperate, moral, and kind-hearted men, wearing fustian jackets and billycock hats, as there are amongst the farmers. We say we have a right to live, seeing that we are the producers of the wealth of this country.
Great stress is laid upon capital, and it has its rights. But then intellect has its claims too, and labour has its rights. I never knew a man who managed his land properly who ever became bankrupt ; if he did, he was not an economical man, but a spendthrift. Seeing, then, that as working men there are no other means whereby we can obtain rights only by uniting together, I ask what are the objects for which we unite together It was said^at the farmers’ association at Dunstable that we' were banded together, not to make men better, but to make them worse. I deny a statement like that. I had the paper put into my hands at Bedford, and I am prepared to state that they uttered some of the falsest statements that ever escaped the lips of mortal men. A cause which needs to be advocated by untruths is not honest, just, or fair. It was said that were the men thrown on the Union funds there would not be enough to find them a  breakfast. The man who said that, mark you, was more liberal then than farmers are on pay-nights. He said we had only funds in hand to the amount of 6d. a-head, and that would not suffice for a breakfast. Why, you men don’t get a penny a-head per meal for yourselves and families to subsist on. I will confute his statement. The Union has its thousands, and we are increasing every week financially, numerically, and in power and influence throughout the country.
I will defy the farmers to crush the Agricultural Labourers’Union, because our cause is founded in righteousness, and we aim to elevate the down-trodden sons of toil. What has the Union done? It has done more for the agricultural labourers of England than all the parsons that have preached
in the Church of England yet. Yes, sir ; the teaching of the ministers of the Gospel — and I don’t confine my remarks to one section of them only — is contentment in poverty. Do you question that ? Look you here ; when a man who works day after day cannot live on his industry, he has a right to make known to his spiritual teacher his circumstances in life ; and as the overlooker of that man, I might say both as to body and soul, that teacher has no right to say a man should be contented who has been robbed of his rights.
The ignorance of the working classes has been such, they have thought they ought to work and support the minister, whilst they themselves have had to live in a wretched and miserable condition, and they have been told that these things are in the order of Divine Providence. That is one of the most blasphemous doctrines ever taught by man. God never created man to starve him to death ; I challenge the parsons to prove it. When your spiritual teachers teach you a spurious doctrine like that, I have a right to tell you that you have a just claim to live by labour. The Agricultural Labourers’ Union is doing a vast amount of good to others besides labourers. Let but the labourer take more money, and the shopkeeper, the butcher, the baker, the grocer will know of it. Honest men have been taught to be contented in that state of life in which it has pleased God to call them. The day is coming when teaching like that won’t do. Let us have honest teaching ; teach the farmer his duties, and the labourer his, and be just, honest, and fair in the sight of all men. It was stated in the London “Times ” that last year an increase of one million was paid to agricultural labourers. Could that have taken place without the Union? And has it not done the men and their wives and little ones good? We hear a great deal about capital. But is not labour capital ? Does gold till the fields, gather in the crops, and thrash the corn ? You know better. It is the strong arm of the English labourer which does it. I have heard since I came here that they are trying to buy you over with little bits of land. Don’t you be bought in that way. Demand to be paid for your labour in the current coin of the realm, and have your cottages direct of the landlord.
 When we first started a union in Warwickshire, the farmers discharged two hundred men. We sat up nightafter night writing appeals, and in six weeks we received 800 pounds . Don’t you fear the farmers. We have more money in our exchequer to-day than we ever had before, and it is continually increasing. We don’t want to crush the farmer, and we are not going to let the farmer crush you. Many a farmer has been compelled to give up his farm as the consequence of joining farmers’ associations and their opposition to the Labourers’ Union. If farmers here won’t pay you a just wage, migrate, and emigrate to where you can share in the prosperity of the country.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Charles Allington - Publican

Charles Allington was born in 1862 in Stretton on Dunsmore, Warwickshire. His mother was Charlotte Allington and he was her first child. No father was listed in the baptism records.  He appeared to spend some of his younger years living with his maternal grandparents, but when his mother (now married to Daniel Lindon, and her family of 3 other sons embarked on the journey to New Zealand with many others of the Allington family, Charles, now a teenager, came too. For a number of years Charles  was engaged in bricklaying in the Canterbury district, and afterwards turned his attention to goldmining, at which he spent about nine years, principally in Marlborough, and in the Thames district.
In 1899 he married widow Frances Charlotte Kaye ( nee Cooke), who had 3 young children and Charles took on the raising of these children (The youngest, Leo was only a year old when his mother remarried).
From around the time of his marriage he appeared to give up the life of a miner and embarked on a career as a publican. 
We first hear of him obtaining a license for a hotel in Millerton in the Buller region in 1902.
By 1906 he was the license holder for the Royal Hotel Denniston, still catering to the miners of the area.
However by 1911 he had moved north to Takaka and in the following years he is noted as being the license holder for the Junction Hotel, Takaka, the Telegraph Hotel, Takaka and the Motueka Hotel.
Later he moved to Canterbury and became publican at the Junction Hotel Rangiora,in 1916 followed by the Black Horse Hotel, Christchurch in 1925 and then the following year took over the Railway Hotel Pleasant Point, before returning to the Christchurch region and taking over the license of the Canterbury Hotel in Lyttleton in 1930.
Charles wife Frances died in 1944 and on his death in 1948 Charles left his estate to his stepdaughter and step grandchildren. Additionally he left his “Gold Trotting Cup” to his nephew George Allington and specified this must remain in the Allington family in perpetuity.

Charles Allington relationship to me: 1st Cousin 4x removed  being the son of the sister of my 3x G Grandmother Sarah Ann Allington