169 years ago today

My 3x great grandfather Robert Parkinson died 12 May 1843 at Walker in Northumberland. Robert was a pitman. Robert married my 3x great grandmother Mary Anne Reay in 1819 and they had 7 children that I know of. Their 4th child was my great great grandfather John Parkinson born in 1826 in Walker. The informant on Robert’s death certificate was a William Parkinson. I am guessing that this was his son William born in 1821.

My Parkinson line hits its brick wall with Robert’s birth somewhere around 1792. So if any of you out there has information about his birth or his parents I would be pleased to hear from you. Drop me a message in the comment box and I will get back to you.

88 years ago today

Edmund Webb – Amble West Cemetery – age 9 months

My Mam’s baby brother, Edmund Webb, died in Radcliffe in Northumberland on 11 May 1924. Edmund was only 9 months old when he died of broncho pneumonia. I remember my granny taking me to put flowers on two graves at Amble West Cemetery when I was little. One was her aunt, the other I believe to be that of her little boy. On my first photo shoot in the cemetery I had forgotten all about him, so I wasn’t even looking for him. I later sent my brother and nephew to follow my vague directions to find him, but they had no success. On a new trip this Easter I had a flash of inspiration and think I have found him. There is no name, but the “monument” fits very well with my childhood memories of place and size and follows the norm of older baby graves there being near the paths. So I hope this photo is of the right grave, but even if it isn’t, I think little Edmund still deserves a thought. There are no living relatives I can think of who knew him during his short life as his only surviving sister was born 6 years after his death.

My baby uncle Edmund shares his name with two others. My granda’s brother Edmund Webb (1897 to 1916) and my great great grandfather Edmund Webb who is one of my most frustrating brick walls. He was probably born around the 1830s, perhaps originates from Cornwall and then moved to Lancashire where he produced great granda Robert Webb who is also a mysterious chap. 2x great grandfather Edmund may have been a tin miner, a coal miner and a stonemason. If any of you out there have any ideas on how to pin him down I would be thrilled to hear from you. Drop me a comment and I will get back to you.

112 years ago today

My great great grandfather Thomas Carr died at Hirst in Northumberland on 7 May 1900. Thomas and his wife Ellen or Eleanor or Ellenor had 5 daughters. Their youngest daughter was my great grandmother Sarah Ann Carr born in 1860. I have had no luck in tracing a marriage record for Thomas and Ellen. The birth certificates for their girls have inconsistent spellings of their mother’s name so I am looking for all possible combinations:

  • Ellen Reid
  • Ellen Read
  • Ellen Reed
  • Eleanor Reid
  • Eleanor Read
  • Eleanor Reed
  • Ellenor Reid
  • Ellenor Read
  • Ellenor Reid

If any of you out there can shed any light on who she may have been drop me a comment and I will get back to you to discuss it.

149 years ago today

My 20 year old great great grandparents Randle Thornton and Mary Oliver, both resident at Barrington Colliery, were married 6 May 1863 at Morpeth Register Office in Northumberland. Their marriage certificate shows Randle to be a coal miner. Their fathers are John Thornton, farm labourer, and Andrew Oliver, coal miner. Witnesses were William Allison and Andrew Oliver. I have no idea yet whether William Allison was a relative or friend. The Andrew Oliver who signed as witness must have been Mary’s father as her brother Andrew was only 10 at the time.

Trying out the scheduled publishing functionality with this post, so I hope it appears on the right day.

Books I have bought

A while ago I set up a publications page with a view to keeping track of some of the books, magazines and other publications that I have found useful in my genealogy research. I have added 10 books to the list tonight. They range from a guide to family history through techniques for dating photographs to fairly specific local Northumbrian history and photograph collections. I started with a mix of 10 to give a flavour of the type of book I find useful. There are many more on my bookshelves which will be gradually added to the list.

114 years ago today

John Henderson drowned 1898 in Amble Harbour

On 29 April 1898 John Henderson, age 38, fell into Amble Harbour while trying to fix the tiller on a boat. An extensive search was carried out, but John was not found until several days later when the tide washed his body back into the harbour. The photo shows his grave in Amble East Cemetery.

John left behind his pregnant wife Mary and two children: David, age 4, who was later killed in WWI and baby Isabella. Their posthumous child, named John after his Dad, died in September 1899 age 10 months.

I have several John Hendersons in my tree. This John, who met the tragic harbour death, was my granny’s uncle, the eldest son of my 2x great grandparents John Henderson and Margaret Stavers.

107 years ago today

Harriet Rutter (née Henderson) - early 1930s at The Drift

Harriet Rutter (née Henderson) – early 1930s at The Drift

This photo shows “Auntie Harriet”, my grandmother’s younger sister. I am dating it as early 1930s as the bottom half of the photo (cropped off here) shows two small girls who were born in 1930 and 1931. Since the caption written on the back by my granny tells me it was taken “at our Harriet’s door” I am assuming it to be taken at The Drift (Chevington Drift). Note the tin bath hanging on the outside wall – used for baths in front of the fire in pit houses.

My great-aunt Harriet Anne Henderson was born 28 Apr 1905 at Amble in Northumberland.  Her parents were Archibald (Archie) Henderson and Margaret Jane Thornton. She married twice, first to John Rutter in 1928, then to Thomas (Tommy) Lindsley in 1977. My mother was very close to her Auntie Harriet who used to visit us regularly and bring her granddaughter to play with me. We alternated between them coming to see us in Amble and us going to see them at the Drift or later in Ferneybeds.

The Christian name Harriet recurs frequently among my Henderson relatives and seems to have been passed down from my 3x great-grandmother Harriet Miller Newton, born in Cullercoats in 1814.