Saturday, November 11, 2017

New discoveries on N H Pearce my Gt Grandfather

Nathaniel Hurrell Pearce is my Great Grandfather -- I have a few photographs of him, and he has always fascinated me.  Maybe it's the name -- (he always uses Hurrell as his middle name),  or maybe it's the fact that with photos I could visualize him and his life.  But it turns out, I couldn't have imagined his interests and involvement in his community.



I've been able to amass a good collection of documents and information on him over time -- and just today stumbled across almost 20 different articles in the Torquay newspapers relating to him. Clearly he was an active member of his community and church.

I knew he was a Shoemaker by trade, and had moved from Eastern Cornwall to Torquay, Devon around 1877 or so.  A second cousin gave me this photo of him, with a group of Sunday School teachers, taken somewhere in Torquay -- so I knew he was involved in his church. 



I had found a few articles previously regarding the death of a son in 1881 in Torquay, where Nathaniel is noted as a Shoemaker.

In the latest articles I've found, he is a prominent community member in the Ellacombe area of Torquay,  is a member and Honorary Librarian for the Torquay Liberal Club, and a member of the YMCA Literary and Debating Society.  He also served in lay minister and Sunday School capacities for the Market Street Primitive Methodist Church in Torquay.  He wrote a very eloquent letter to the editor of the Torquay Times in 1907, regarding another Methodist Chuch member. 



He was also noted as delivering several speeches at both the Literary Society and Church events.



All of this is quite surprising, considering he was born in a small village in St Ive, Cornwall and worked independently as a Shoemaker.  It seems he had a keen sense of duty, was educated more than I thought, and was dedicated to his religion.   It makes me quite proud to discover that I had an ancestor who was involved in his community and church, more so than I ever imagined.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Faherty of Tullyvrick, Oughterard

So, I'm chasing my GG Grandmother Kate Faherty.  For years I thought her name was Flaherty and had no idea where she was from.  Recent messages from 2 different cousins confirm the name was FAHERTY and the family was from Camp Street, Oughterard (which is Faugh West in the Census districts).

I posted her details on the Oughterard Heritage webpage and got an interesting response, showing that there were Faherty children with Patrick Toole as a baptismal sponsor (he was Kate Faherty's husband) -- so this makes sense that he is acting as a baptismal sponsor to his wife's nieces/nephews.  These children are from Tullyvrick, which is just outside of Oughterard near Lough Corrib.

Griffith’s Valuations for 1855 http://www.askaboutireland.ie has a record of a John Faherty being the owner of a garden and buildings in Barrack Street, Oughterard in the townland of Fough West. The house is occupied by Arthur Evans as tenant. This appears to be the only “Faherty” name there which is now known as “Camp Street”.
In the townland of Tullavrick, Oughterard there is a John Faherty recorded as having land to the value of £7.0.0 and buildings valued at £0.10.0.
Kilcummin parish records show a marriage between a John Faherty and a Mary Anne Molloy on October 24th 1842. No address! Witnesses: John Guinan and Mary Heraghty
Children with parents as above:
Margaret Faherty, Baptism September 9th 1852.
Sponsors: Patrick Toole and Ellen Molloy
Michael Faherty, baptism September 22nd 1859.
Sponsors: Patrick Toole and Mary Faherty.
No addresses for either.

It's possible that the family migrated into "town", and Camp Street has Faherty's living there by 1901 Census.

I checked my Ancestry DNA matches and found a connection to a person who descends from a Faherty of Tullyvrick -- so this makes me think I'm on the right track.

Also, a cousin who is now deceased once told us that our GG Grandmother was Mary Molloy -- she had her married to another line of the family, but now I think she may have gotten that confused, but there was a grain of truth somewhere, and the Molloy family relates to the Faherty's.  There is also some connection to McGauley/McGawley families in Tullyvrick.

Still sorting out all the families that I've found records for in Tullyvrick, but I somewhat suspect that based on naming patterns, Kate Faherty's father may be a John Faherty.

Stay tuned......


Saturday, January 7, 2017

5 more generations!!! Skipwith Family of Lincolnshire

I get lots of Ancestry notifications, and usually do a cursory glance at them......well, last night I saw in my email a notification of new comments (not hints) on my Family Tree.

The comment was on my SIMON family -- which had been a dead end.  My GGG Grandmother was Jane Simon.  She was the mother of Jane Mell who married Michael Toulson.

All I knew was that Jane married William Mell in North Cockerington in 1805, had a son Thomas there in 1806, and then for an unknown reason, they moved to Aunsby, where my GG Grandmother Jane Mell was born in 1809.   Aunsby is quite a distance from North Cockerington, so I suspect he must have moved for a job (possibly a Farm Bailiff or some such).

Jane Simon was my dead end -- common name in the northern part of Lincolnshire, where I wasn't as familiar with the villages and families.   Luckily, the comment on my Family Tree said:


First name(s) Jane

Last name Symonds

Sex Female
Baptism date 19 Dec 1772
Baptism year 1772
County Lincolnshire
Place Alvingham
Mother's first name(s) Rebecca
Father's first name(s) William

Aha!!! The name should be Symonds!! And the village of Alvingham is the next village north of North Cockerington. These villages are very small, so there aren't alot of families to sort out! A genealogist's dream!

The second comment on my tree gave me hints as to the parents William and Rebecca:
William Symon married Rebecca Burman (1762) widow of John Burman, maiden name Skipwith (1st marriage 1760)

OMG, what a bonanza of new names and clues! I started on the SKIPWITH name, as that seemed easiest to follow, and quickly found SIX generations of SKIPWITH's --- going back to 1535 in Theddlethorpe All Saints, Lincolnshire. The family had lived in this area of North East Lincolnshire between the North Sea and the Wolds of Lincolnshire for almost 250 years (that I can document).

And Rebecca's father Thomas Skipwith is actually memorialized in the Alvingham Cemetery with a headstone (a rarity in my family that never seemed to have money to leave a headstone!). Thomas lived to the age of 93! He was born in 1711 and died in 1803. I descend from his first wife, and after her death he remarried and was married for 60 years to his second wife! A remarkable life for that time period!

Now to work on the siblings of the Skipwith's and flesh them all out. There is a famous Skipwith' family that originated in Skipwith, Yorkshire and relocated to Lincolnshire in the 14th Century. At first glance I don't see a connection with my branch (of course, I'm the poor relation!) -- but will keep searching.

And also, need to see if I can make any headway on William Symond's, Rebecca Skipwith's husband.

Friday, November 18, 2016

A slew of new Irish family tree hits and messages.....

Several goldmines on the Irish Genealogy front:

A cousin messaged me via Facebook and gave me information that our Gt Gt Grandmother Catherine/Kate Flaherty was really a Faherty -- and was from Camp Street in Oughterard.  All this is new information, and corroborated by another cousin who said our Gt Aunt always said she was from Camp Street Oughterard.   I've posted a query to the Oughterard Heritage webpage asking for any info.

This cousin is also related to me doubly, through the Toole's and the Walsh's of Muckanaghkillew!

Another message via Ancestry from a Hernon who lives in Lettercalla -- she was asking about any connection I might know between my Walsh family and her family of Hernon's and Burkes.  Her Gt Gt Grandmother Mary Burke was a baptismal sponsor for a couple of Paidin Walsh's children, and Thady Walsh (his brother) served as baptismal sponsor for one of Mary's nephews (Tom, son of Robert Burke).  The Burkes lived near the Walsh's -- and supposedly came from Carna, but were evicted, went to Inis Bearachin, then settled in Lettercalla.

So possibly my Maggie, wife of Michael and mother of Paidin, Thady, Michil, Mary, Nuala, et al, was a Burke???? She would be a generation above Mary Burke, so possibly an Aunt of hers -- which would make Mary a 1st cousin of Paidin and Thady et al???

She also said that the photo I had of the old Walsh cabin in Lettercalla was really a Reaney house. She was going to take a photo of the Walsh house.  She said the Walsh and Folan families still don't like each other much, to this day!

And finally, a Connolly DNA hit at 2-4th cousins -- possibly via a brother of Podgeen -- still sorting that out, as the message came through FamilytreeDNA.

When it rains it pours....

Henry Pearce and sons

A recent email from the British Newspaper Archive said they'd posted a newspaper called the Cornwall & Devon Post -- so I had a look through with my usual searches of Hurrell and Pearce.  Lo and behold, I found an article all about my Pearce family of Callington/St. Ive!!!


The article refers to a Henry Pearce, son of Henry Pearce.  In reality this is John Carew Pearce. He is one of the 4 sons of Henry Perace -- the others being Thomas Pearce (of Landrake), Samuel Pearce (of New Zealand), and Nathaniel Hurrell Pearce (my Gt Grandfather - of Torquay). 

Initially I couldn't figure out if this was my family -- as the name Henry Pearce and Army Pensioner didn't seem to fit.  But the other sons and father definitely fit with what I knew.  So, I set out to do some searching on John Carew Pearce (aka Henry).

Turns out I had a missing 1881 census for him -- he was in St Ive in 1871 and 1891, but where was he inbetween?  I had a quick look at Findmypast.com, and searched the British Army records, as he was listed as a pensioner.  This was most unusual, since most men in the area joined the Royal Navy in Plymouth, if they were going into the military.  

Sure enough, there was a John Pearce, born 1853, joining in Burley!!  A huge file for him, with all the corroborating details -- born in St. Ive, Father Henry Pearce of Callington, etc.  Turns out he had been part of the Royal Marines Artillery Militia initially, and then joined the regular Army 2 years later.  Lots of correspondence regarding this....

From his service record, he served a total of 21 years, with 3 years in India, and some Reserve time in Guernsey (where he must have met his wife), and was discharged in Belfast, due to being medically unfit as he was suffering from Brights Disease.

His discharge said his intended place of residence was St Ive, so he returned home just before the 1891 Census.  This article is in 1892, and essentially the Local Authority wanted him to contribute more towards the maintenance of his Father, but he argued the burden should be shared between the 4 sons.  Henry Pearce died later that year, so the case was probably dropped.

Fascinating to see an article from 1892 talking directly about my Pearce family, and leading me to discover a whole British Army career that I knew nothing about!

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Charles Montague Pearce

For many years I've been searching for the children of my Great Uncle, Albert Edward "Fred" Pearce. My only leads were that he married an Edith Harrison near Exeter and had 2 sons.  I found one son, Charles M, born in 1913 in Exeter area, but nothing further.

I know that "Fred" (and I assume his wife) were living in Clapham, London in 1915 - based on a business card he put into his Sister's Autograph Book, on her departure for the USA.  He was a commercial artist and used the name Fred Mont. Pearce


I had assumed that this might have been Mortimer, as a tribute to his Sister's husband who essentially raised him --- but now the name Montague appears to be the middle name he was using.  I deduced this from the Civil Registration for his son's death.   In looking for the death of Charles M Pearce, born 1913 -- I found a death for Charles Montague Pearce, born in the correct quarter of 1913, and dying in Islington (London) in 1972.

Now, where did the name Montague come from??

I've also yet to find Alfred Edward "Fred" in the 1939 Register, or the death of his wife Edith (I think she died relatively young, as I know Fred had a "common law wife" named Maisie later in life).  And where did Alfred Edward "Fred" die?   Was he in Islington near his son?  What was the other son's name (brother of Charles Montague Pearce)? Was that son born in London?

I've ordered the death certificate for Charles Montague Pearce -- hoping there will be an informant and a better address than just Islington Reg District.

More to follow.....

UPDATE:  He died in Islington on 14 Aug 1972.  His residence was 27 Hamilton Park, Islington, and he was listed as a Commercial Artist

Thursday, September 8, 2016

New Irish Civil Registration Records -- what a goldmine!

Wow! What a red letter day in the world of Irish Genealogy!  Free Civil Registration Records online!  OMG, how long have we needed these!  Now you can finally see the details, which help you determine if it's your ancestor!

The village names, ages, etc -- all those details are so key in finding the correct Mary Walsh or Patrick Connolly.  All my people have such common names, that it's virtually impossible without the village names, or parents names, to pinpoint the right person.

I started with my Walsh family -- and began with death certs.  Going through my direct line, and finding my Gt Grandmother's death in 1923, her husband's death in 1916.

Most interestingly I found their daughter Mary Walsh - my Grandmother's sister.  We had always been told she was sickly (probably with TB) and had died young.  I knew she was still alive in 1911, but lo and behold she died in 1934 and lived to the age of 59!! So much for that family story!!

I found my Grandmother's other sister Margaret, and while I knew her death date, I didn't know why she died relatively young at age 48 in 1931 -- turns out she got septicemia from a cut suffered on the farm -- and died in Hospital over the Christmas holidays.  Very sad!  This detail supplied by my cousin after I sent her the copy of the certificate.

Lots of early dates are not producing images yet, so hope that issue will be sorted out tomorrow when the records truly go live.

So excited to keep making discoveries and correcting some errors (I had some assumed death dates which proved to be wrong).

Look forward to diving into the birth and marriage records tomorrow!

UPDATE: As of Sept 12, 2016 --- I've added 63 new records to my Family Tree!!! Primarily deaths, and some marriages!  Fantastic discoveries continue....