Friday, 24 April 2009

A mystery marriage in Barton-under-Needwood (Part 4)

I found the following discussion of Victorian marriage customs on Literary Liaisons, an online resource for romance writers by M. Hoppe. Although written primarily with 19th Century North American practices in mind, it refers to English customs of the time.

Before the 1880s, a couple was required by law to have a morning ceremony ... In the Eastern United States, the fashionable hours were between 10:00 a.m. and Noon because it was an English custom ... The marriage ceremony took place either at home or in church ... In the 1850s, weddings were almost always held in church, and it was customary to use the bride's parish. The clergyman and parish clerk were in attendance. After the ceremony, the couple signed their name in the parish register in the vestry. The bride signed her maiden name. Flowers decorated the church.
In English parish registers, from 1812 onwards, there was also a requirement after marriage ceremonies for the signature of two witnesses. In my experience of transcribing thousands of marriage register entries, by the 1860s and 1870s, these witnesses were usually relatives of the bride and groom. In some cases, such as with wealthier families, additional witnesses often signed the register.

In England, a country bride and her wedding party walked to church on a carpet of blossoms to assure a happy path through life. For the wealthier, a grey horse pulling the wedding carriage was considered good luck. Church bells pealed forth as the couple entered the church ... After the ceremony, the bride and groom walked out without looking left or right. It was considered bad taste to acknowledge friends and acquaintances. The bride's parents were the first to leave the church, and the best man the last after he paid the clergyman for his services. From a custom dating back to Roman times when nuts were thrown after the departing couple, the practice continued, but in the form of rice, grain or birdseed, a symbol of fertility.

Bridal Toilettes, Harper's Bazaar, 2 August 1870
Victorian Fashions from Harper's Bazaar 1867-1898, by Stella Blum (ed.)

Because of the early hour for weddings, the reception was traditionally a breakfast. It was an English custom to have a Noon ceremony with the breakfast thirty minutes later at the bride's home. There, the couple received the guests and accepted congratulations.

The bridal couple usually left for their honeymoon after the wedding breakfast ... If changing into the traveling costumes, the bride and groom did so immediately after the cake was cut ... bride wore a traveling dress, which may have been her wedding dress, especially if the wedding had been an intimate affair with few family and friends, or they were traveling by train or steamer immediately after the reception. Colors for the dress were becoming and practical - brown or black for mid-Victorian ... If changing into the traveling costumes, the bride and groom did so immediately after the cake was cut. Bridesmaids went with the bride to help her, at which time she gave them each a flower from her bouquet. By the time the couple was ready to depart, only family and intimate friends were present.

Image and collection of Brett Payne
Carte de visite portrait of an unidentified wedding group
Taken c. 1867-1873
by William Farmer of Barton-under-Needwood

In the previous three parts (1, 2, 3) of this article, I identified a number of marriages between residents of the Barton-under-Needwood area which might have been recorded by the photographer William Farmer in the image shown above, and subsequently narrowed down my list to just three of the most likely couples, in chronological order.

Image © Geoff Pick and courtesy of
St. Michael & All Angels Parish Church, Tatenhill
Image © Copyright Geoff Pick, courtesy of
Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Samuel Archer m: Wednesday, 4 March 1867 St Michael Tatenhill, Staffs. Caroline Ball
The Derby Mercury 13 March 1867: On the 4th inst., at Tatenhill, by the Rev. W.P. Smeeth, M.A., Mr. Samuel Archer, of Burton park, to Caroline Ball, of Barton-under-Needwood
Caroline Ball was the 39 year-old daughter of James Ball (1783-1870) and Elizabeth née Brown (1786-1864). She had two sisters, one older, one younger, but apparently no brothers. James Ball was a farmer who lived on the Main Street of Barton-under-Needwood, although he had earlier farmed 18 acres at Tatenhill. The groom Samuel Archer, a farmer of 230 acres at Barton Park, was a widower two years her senior, with five children (aged from 7 to 16) from his first marriage.

View Larger Map
Barton Park Farm, near Barton-under-Needwood
from GoogleMaps

From a recent satellite image of the area on GoogleMaps (above) and an aerial shot from Panoramio (below) it appears that Barton Park Farm is still a working farm, and may well have some farm buildings that have survived largely intact from the 1860s/1870s.

Image © jmhall & courtesy of Panoramio
An aerial view of Barton Park Farm, facing south-east
Image © jmhall & courtesy of Panoramio

Image © J147 and courtesy of
St. Mary the Virgin Parish Church, Weston-on-Trent
Image © Copyright J147, courtesy of
Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Jacob Botham Smith m: Wednesday, 23 February 1870 at Weston-upon-Trent, Derbys. Mary Ann Hoult
The Derby Mercury 23 February 1870: On the 22nd inst., at Weston-upon-Trent, by the Rev. J. Wadham, Mr. Jacob Botham Smith, to Mary Ann, eldest daughter of Mr. James Hoult, of Blakenhall Farm, Barton-under-Needwood.
Mary Ann Hoult, aged 35 and a spinster, was the eldest child of James Hoult (1803-1882), tenant farmer of Upper Blakenhall Farm, west of Barton-under Needwood, and his wife Abigail née Abell (1815-1874). Her husband Jacob Botham Smith was 29, and one of four children of Jacob Botham Smith senior (1801-1864), farmer of Aston-upon-Trent, and Anne née Hardy (1798-1873). Mary Ann had seven younger siblings, of whom only a brother William James, aged 27, was married, and farming in Cranage, Cheshire. Her remaining four sisters and two brothers were living with their parents at Upper Blakenhall, in Burton-on-Trent or working as housekeepers on other farms further afield (Hoon Hay, Derbyshire and Over Whitacre, Warwickshire). Jacob had three older brothers, all of whom were farming - in Alvaston, Shardlow and Wilne - and a sister who was married to a Derby grocer, chandler and tea dealer, Charles John Storer. After the wedding the couple settled at Glebe Farm in the parish of Weston-on-Trent, where a daughter Mary Hardy Smith was born in about April 1870.

View Larger Map
Upper Blakenhall Farm, near Barton-under-Needwood
from GoogleMaps

A satellite image from GoogleMaps (above) shows a similar group of oldish looking farmhouse and outbuildings at Upper Blakenhall Farm, identified by reference to both a 1932 1" to 1 mile (1:63,360) Ordnance Survey map and a 1883 6" to the mile (1:10,560) scale Ordnance Survey map, shown below.

Image © Ordnance Survey and courtesy of Nigel Aspdin
Upper Blakenhall Farm, near Barton-under-Needwood, extract from One-Inch OS Map of Burton upon Trent (Sheet 120), Ordnance Survey, 1932

Image © Ordnance Survey and courtesy of OS Old Maps
Upper Blakenhall Farm, near Barton-under-Needwood, extract from Six-Inch OS Map, Ordnance Survey Old Maps, 1883

Image © Copyright Stanley Walker and courtesy of
St. Modwen Parish Church, Burton-on-Trent
Image © Copyright Stanley Walker, courtesy of
Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Samuel Coulson m: Wednesday, 17 December 1873 at St Modwen's, Burton-on-Trent, Staffs. Eliza Marshall
The Derby Mercury 17 December 1873: COULSON-MARSHALL - Dec 9, at the parish church, Burton-on-Trent, by the Rev. C.F. Thornewill, M.A., vicar, Mr. Samuel Coulson, of Alverton House, Denstone, son of the late Mr. Samuel Coulson, of Barton-under-Needwood, to Eliza, youngest daughter of Mr. William Marshall, of Burton-on-Trent.
Samuel Coulson, a 32 year-old maltster, brickmaker and farmer, formerly of the Main Street, Barton-under-Needwood, married Eliza Marshall of Burton-on-Trent. Eliza was one of four children - she had an older sister and brother and a younger brother - of a master currier and leather merchant William Marshall (1815-1886) and his wife Hannah (1819-1852/55). After their marriage Samuel and Eliza settled at Alvaston House, Denstone on a farm of some 110 acres.

On further research it appears that, although Samuel Coulson was living in Barton-under-Needwood when the 1871 Census was enumerated, by the time of his marriage, he had moved some fourteen miles (23 km) away to Denstone, on the border between North Staffordshire and Derbyshire.

My research into the families of both bride and groom in each individual marriage has resulted in several observations which may or may not be pertinent.
  • The wedding party appears to have included three young or middle-aged men, apart from the groom, and I would expect these to have been family members. The Archer and Ball families from the first marriage do not appear to include any likely male candidates and, while it does not completely exclude the marriage from consideration, it does make them less likely candidates.
  • With the Coulson-Marshall marriage, although Eliza had male siblings, since her family was from Burton-upon-Trent and the marriage took place there, it seems likely that they would have commissioned a photographer from one of several studios in Burton.
  • If the marriage procedure in our photographs adhered to the protocol outlined earlier in this article - and that might not necessarily have been the case - then it seems likely that the wedding party would have retired to the home of the bride after the service. The photographer would probably have been engaged to take portraits of the wedding party at this stage of the proceedings. Only in the cases of the Archer-Ball and Smith-Hoult marriages were the brides' parents from farming backgrounds.
  • James Ball appears to have been a relatively small-scale farmer, and may not have had farm buildings as extensive as those pictured in the photographs.

The only marriage which doesn't appear to have any negative points against it at this stage in the investigation is that between Jacob Smith and Mary Ann Hoult in February 1870. The Archer-Ball wedding comes a close second, while the Coulson-Marshall wedding is regarded as least likely.

That is about the limit of the research that I've been able to conduct remotely, in other words, via the internet from the other side of the world. In Part 5 of the investigation, we take to the road.


International Genealogical Index (IGI) from the LDS Church at FamilySearch
Index to GRO Births, Marriages & Deaths from FreeBMD
UK Census 1841-1901 indexed images from Ancestry
Stella Blum (1974) Victorian Fashions from Harper's Bazaar, 1867-1898, Dover Publications, ISBN 0486229904
The Victorian Wedding, Part 1 (The Preparation) & Part 2 (The Ceremony and Reception), by M. Hoppe on Literary Liaisons
Six-Inch Ordnance Survey Maps, 1:10,560 Scale Ordnance Survey Old Maps, publ. 1883
One-Inch OS Map of Burton upon Trent (Sheet 120), Scale 1:63,360, Ordnance Survey, Surveyed 1917-1917, with minor corrections 1932, publ. 1932, courtsey of Nigel Aspdin.

Monday, 20 April 2009

A mystery marriage in Barton-under-Needwood (Part 3)

(Continued from Part 2)

Having established that William Farmer's period of operation as a photographer in the village of Barton-under-Needwood was from roughly 1863 until 1873, we can return to, and examine in more detail, the wedding photograph which I introduced in the first article (Part 1).

Image © and collection of Brett Payne

I previously estimated that the portrait was probably taken either in the late 1860s or early 1870s. With a better understanding of Farmer's movements and career as a photographer, it seems likely that it was between 1867 and 1873. This and the other two portraits appear to have been taken in a farm yard or courtyard of some sort. From the style of clothing in the wedding portrait, the subjects were fairly well off, by which I mean that they are more likely to have been tenant farmers or landowners than farm labourers.

With that in mind, it seemed likely to me that notice of such a wedding would have been inserted in the local newspaper. From the list of newspapers held by The Magic Attic in Swadlincote it seems likely that the Burton Chronicle and The Derby Mercury would have been the daily newspapers of choice in the 1860s and 1870s. Fortunately a complete set images of issues of The Derby Mercury newspaper from 1800-1900 are included in the 19th Century British Library Newspaper Collection presented online by Gale Cengage Learning. This is available by subscription, or alternatively accessible through many libraries who have such subscriptions, and a friend very kindly conducted some searches for me through such a library facility. I have previously used it during a period when Gale was offering a free trial, and am therefore familiar with the searching mechanisms and parameters.

The search engine deals with text files of the newspaper documents created with the aid of sophisticated scanning and optical character recognition (OCR) software. This allows the user to look for specific words or text strings, either in article titles or in entire documents, limiting searches by publication date and/or title. Using the "Basic Search" tool, and searching for all instances (not just in titles, but throughout all documents) of the keyword "Needwood" between 1865 and 1875 (to allow some margin of error in my date estimate) in The Derby Mercury produced 340 positive results.

Each of these "hits" was presented with the article title so it was then a relatively simple, if somewhat tedious, exercise to browse through the list selecting and viewing all of those which fell under the title, "Births, Deaths, Marriages and Obituaries." Of the 66 hits only eleven were marriage announcements where at least one of the participants was shown as being from Barton-under-Needwood; the remainder were births and deaths, or entries from the nearby, but completely separate, village of Needwood. I transcribed all of these in full (the names of bride or groom, where from Barton-under-Needwood, highlighted in bold are my own embellishment):

1865-03-08: On the 25th ult., at St. Peter's Church, Derby, by the Rev. J. Smith, Mr. Lewis Stretton to Miss Elizabeth Ironmonger, of Barton-under-Needwood.

1865-03-15: On the 4th inst., at the parish church, Barton-under-Needwood, by the Rev. H.G. Cooper, Mr. Thomas Fallowes Walker, of Burton-on-Trent, to Miss Emma Bowler, second daughter of Mr. Bowler, second daughter of Mr. Bowler, of Burton-on-Trent.

1866-11-21: On the 11th inst., at the Register-office, Burton, Mr. William Jones, of Burton-on-Trent, to Miss Emily Smith, of Barton-under-Needwood.

1867-03-13: On the 4th inst., at Tatenhill, by the Rev. W.P. Smeeth, M.A., Mr. Samuel Archer, of Burton park, to Caroline Ball, of Barton-under-Needwood.

1867-03-27: On the 13th inst., at Repton, by the Rev. W. Williams, Mr. Halbard, of Barton-under-Needwood, to Alice Mary, second daughter of Mr. Seth Smith, of Repton.

1869-07-28: On the 17th, at St. James's Church, Barton-under-Needwood, by the Rev. H.G. Cooper, M.A., Mr. George Lewis, Pontypridd, South Wales, to Elizabeth Wilson, only daughter of Mr. Wm. Tunley, of the former place.

1870-02-09: On the 29th ult., at the Register Office, Mr. James Todd of Burton, to Miss Emma Chamberlain, of Barton-under-Needwood.

1870-02-23: On the 22nd inst., at Weston-upon-Trent, by the Rev. J. Wadham, Mr. Jacob Botham Smith, to Mary Ann, eldest daughter of Mr. James Hoult, of Blakenhall Farm, Barton-under-Needwood.

1872-04-10: ASKHAM-LEE - April 3, at the Cathedral, Manchester, by the Rev. H.C. Smith, M.A., Minor Canon, Thos. Askham, of Pocklington, Yorkshire, to Laura Elizabeth, eldest daughter of the late Charles Hastings Lee, of Barton-under-Needwood, Staffordshire.

1873-12-17: COULSON-MARSHALL - Dec 9, at the parish church, Burton-on-Trent, by the Rev. C.F. Thornewill, M.A., vicar, Mr. Samuel Coulson, of Alverton House, Denstone, son of the late Mr. Samuel Coulson, of Barton-under-Needwood, to Eliza, youngest daughter of Mr. William Marshall, of Burton-on-Trent.

1875-06-09: BRADDYLL-BIRCH - On the 2nd of June, at the parish church, Long Eaton, by the Rev. T. Ford Fenn, M.A., Head Master of Trent College, Henry John, eldest son of the late Edward S.B. Richmond Gale Braddyll, Esq., to Mary, fifth daughter of the late William Birch, F.R.C.S.E., of Barton-under-Needwood, Esq.
Apart from the convenience of this search method, one major advantage is that it includes marriages that didn't actually take place at Barton-under-Needwood. Those are the only ones that would be found if one looked, for example at the Barton parish registers. However, there are important limitations of and disadvantages to this method, the most obvious being that the marriage depicted in our portrait may not have received a newspaper notice at all. I proceeded with a more detailed examination of the eleven marriages, keeping in mind the fact that the list was almost certainly incomplete.

Of the eleven marriages listed, only one (1870, Smith-Hoult) is from a family obviously involved in farming, at least from the information given in the newspaper entry. To investigate further, I tracked down each of these families using the 1861 and 1871 Census records, GRO Birth, Marriage & Death indexes, the IGI and other sources, turning up five more candidates.

- Elizabeth Ironmonger was the daughter of Edwin Ironmonger, a farm labourer of Catholme Bridge, Barton-under-Needwood, and herself working as a domestic servant at Harborne in 1861. The marriage date of March 1865 is a little early, in my estimate, for the photograph, and I would place this one low on the list of possibilities.

- Caroline Ball was the daughter of James Ball, a farmer who lived on the Main Street of Barton-under-Needwood. In March 1867 she was 39 years old and married Samuel Archer, farmer of 230 acres at Barton Park. He was a widower two years her senior, with five children from his first marriage, aged between seven and sixteen.

- Philip Halbard was a 43 year-old ironmonger from Burton-upon-Trent, probably only briefly resident in Barton-under-Needwood, who established the Britannia foundry in Horninglow Street, this marriage being his third. His bride Alice Mary Smith, 21 years old at the time of her marriage in March 1867, was the second daughter of Repton farmer Seth Smith.

- Emma Chamberlain was a daughter of William Chamberlain, agricultural labourer of Fulbrook, Barton-under-Needwood, who was 21 when she married James Todd, a 24 year-old brewer's clerk from Burton-on-Trent, in February 1870. Considering the occupation of both the groom and the bride's father, I think this marriage is also unlikely to be the one in Farmer's portrait.

- Mary Ann Hoult, aged 35 and a spinster, was the eldest daughter of James Hoult, tenant farmer of Upper Blakenhall Farm, west of Barton-under Needwood. Her husband Jacob Botham Smith was 29, and one of four children of Jacob Botham Smith senior, farmer of Aston-upon-Trent. They married in February 1870 at Weston-on-Trent, and settled at Glebe Farm in that parish.

- Samuel Coulson, a 32 year-old maltster, brickmaker and farmer, formerly of the Main Street, Barton-under-Needwood, married Eliza Marshall of Burton-on-Trent. They settled at Alvaston House, Denstone on a farm of some 110 acres.

Before I attempt to narrow down that list any further, I would like to discuss the possible modus operandi of the photographer. A preliminary investigation of William Farmer, presented in the previous article in this series, revealed that he probably spent at least a decade or so travelling around with his family in a caravan before settling in Barton-under-Needwood. Although I don't have evidence that he operated as an itinerant or travelling photographer during the entire period, it seems fairly likely. He certainly described himself as a photographic artist on census night in April 1861. This was shortly after the carte de visite was introduced and, although it became popular very rapidly, it seems more likely that Farmer was using the wet-plate collodion process at the time, and producing ambrotypes or tintypes for his customers.

Image courtesy of The Open University
The Itinerant Photographer on Clapham Common, by John Thomson
from Street Life in London, by John Thomson & Adolphe Smith, 1877/78
Courtesy of The Open University

As Robert Leggat discusses in his History of Photography: The Tintype Process, the method appealed to itinerant and street photographers because the process was simple, quick, cheap to produce, with low capital requirements. In addition, since they were direct positives, the intermediate stage of exposure of glass negatives was not necessary. A typical set up for itinerant photographers is shown in the photograph from the late 1870s above, titled "The Itinerant Photographer on Clapham Common" and reproduced from Street Life in London by Thomson & Smith (courtesy of The Open University).

It is likely that Farmer had been using this process since Frederick Scott Archer had developed it and published the details in 1852, making it freely available. Brian Coe states, in his informative book, The Birth of Photography, that "unlike the Daguerreotype process it required little skill and a very modest investment in apparatus and materials. No licences were needed for its commercial operation ... the difference in cost was considerable, and even the poor could be tempted into a photographic studio for a sixpenny portrait." Although the tintype or ferrotype process variation was first described in 1853, it only became popular around 1860.

It was a little unusual for the population of a small village the size of Barton-under-Needwood - only 1,677 people in 1871 - to sustain the services of a resident photographer for very long. By comparison, the only photographers working in that part of South Derbyshire south of the River Trent in the 1870s were James Toft & Arthur Hall in the parish of Swadlincote (pop. 1,927 in 1871) and William Rodbourn in the township of Stanton & Newhall (pop. 3,204 in 1871). None of them managed to stay in business for more than a couple of years. However, it was recently pointed out to me (thank you, Nigel and his knowledgeable neighbour) that Barton-under-Needwood was, and still is, characterised by a large proportion of rather grand houses. The term "Beerages," obviously derived from the word "peerage," is how many people in the area refer to the estates established with old money by Burton brewery owners in and around some of the surrounding villages, including Barton. Some of the residents of the village, such as the ironmonger Philip Halbard (see above), even commuted to work in Burton-on-Trent on a fairly regular basis.

Farmer probably realised that he could find enough wealthy clientele in this community from whom to make a living, and thus avoid the continual travelling with a growing family. They presumably rented the house in the Main Street in which they were living in 1871, but it is possible that Farmer may not have conducted his business on those premises. Indeed he may never have used a regular studio. He was already set up to operate as a travelling photographer, with all of the appropriate equipment, which he is likely to have continued to use. He may also have retained the caravan as a mobile studio, perhaps parked down the lane in a farmer's yard. He would then have the means to carry out visits to rural properties in the surrounding area on commission, and perhaps more speculative excursions to nearby villages at periodic intervals. It would therefore have been a fairly normal undertaking for him to take his photographic equipment out to a farm to take portraits of a wedding party, and would have possibly included shots of the relatives, farm buildings, and even animals, as part of the deal.

So, with that in mind we can return to the six marriage possibilities listed previously. It is probably easiest to exclude the least likely candidates first, and investigate the others in more detail. The clothing worn by the wedding group does not suggest they were agricultural labourers or domestic servants, as were the participants in the Stretton-Ironmonger and Chamberlain-Todd marriages. I feel that the Halbard-Smith marriage, too, is an unlikely candidate since it would have been quite a distance for Farmer to have travelled from Barton to the Smith farm at Repton, where the bride's father lived and where the marriage took place. It would have been far easier, and cheaper, for them to visit a studio in Burton-on-Trent.

This leaves three potential marriages:
- Samuel Archer m: 13 March 1867 Caroline Ball
- Jacob Botham Smith m: 23 February 1870 Mary Ann Hoult
- Samuel Coulson m: 17 December 1873 Eliza Marshall
and I will investigate these families in greater detail in Part 4.


History of Local Newspapers from The Magic Atttic
The Derby Mercury Newspaper 1801-1900, images from the British Library courtesy of Gale Cengage
International Genealogical Index (IGI) from the LDS Church at FamilySearch
Index to GRO Births, Marriages & Deaths from FreeBMD
UK Census 1841-1901 indexed images from Ancestry
E.R. Kelly's Post Office Directory of Staffordshire, 1868, from Ancestry
J.G. Harrod & Co.'s Directory of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland & Staffordshire, 1870, from the University of Leicester's Historical Directories
E.R. Kelly's Post Office Directory of Staffordshire, 1872, from Ancestry
F. Wright's Directory of South Derbyshire, 1874, from the University of Leicester's Historical Directories
E.R. Kelly's Post Office Directory of Derbyshire, 1876, from Ancestry
Nigel J. Tringham (ed.), Burton-upon-Trent: Economic history, in A History of the County of Stafford: Volume 9: Burton-upon-Trent (2003), pp. 53-84, from British History Online
The Plantagenet Roll of the Blood Royal, The Mortimer-Percy Volume, by the Marquis of Ruvigny and Raineval, from GoogleBooks
Robert Leggatt's article, The Tintype Process, on A History of Photography from its beginnings till the 1920s, web site dated 1997-2008
Brian Coe (1976) The Birth of Photography, publ. Spring Books, London, ISBN 0600562964
The Rise of the Itinerant Photographer, in Picturing the family, Course A173_1 from The Open University

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

A mystery marriage in Barton-under-Needwood (Part 2)

Image © and collection of Brett Payne

(Continued from Part 1)

William John Farmer arrived in the Staffordshire village of Barton-under-Needwood in 1862 or 1863, having apparently lived for some years in a caravan, working as an itinerant photographer. Although he was probably born around 1819, the location is uncertain, and nothing is known of either his early life or marriage.

The 1861 Census shows him, aged 41 and working as a photographic artist, with his wife Harriet and five children in a caravan in the small village of Rocester on the banks of the Dove River in north Staffordshire. The birth places specified for the children, although all in Staffordshire, suggest that they moved frequently:
- William Henry b. c.1853 Wasall (sic = Walsall)
- Thomas b. c.1854 Barton
- Joseph b. c.1857 Handsworth
- William b. c.1859 Penkridge
- Georgiana b. c.Aug 1860 Uttoxeter

Another daughter named Harriet was apparently born at Rugeley later that year, although not too much reliability should be read into these dates and locations, since members of this family rarely provided consistent information to successive census enumerators. William himself various described his birth place as "New York, U.S.A.," "Finchley, Bedfordshire," and "Lichfield, Staffordshire," and in 1881 apparently told the census enumerator that his name was Thomas!

Perhaps the impending arrival of another child was just too much for them all to remain "on the road." William and Harriet had a further four children between 1863 and 1869, but they were all born in Barton-under-Needwood, suggesting that they remained in the village throughout that time. This is supported by listings of W.J. Farmer as a photographer in Barton-under-Needwood in trade directories for 1868, 1870 and 1872.

Image © The National Archives and courtesy of Ancestry
Extract from 1871 Census of Barton-under-Needwood, Staffordshire
National Archives Ref. RG10/2903/48/11/55

In April 1871, still with seven children at home, they were living in a house on the High Street of Barton, close to the centre of the village, and it seems likely that William Farmer used the premises as a studio, even though no studio portraits by him have yet been found. Their son Thomas was two doors away, living with George Allsop, a plumber and glazier to whom he was apprenticed. His younger brother Joseph was nearby in Wales End, where he was employed as a groom to William Tunley, a district manager of the Bristol Life Insurance Office.

Image © and courtesy of Nigel Aspdin

Nigel Aspdin very kindly sent me this wonderful image of another carte de visite by Farmer, from his own family collection. It was taken around the same time as those displayed in Part 1 of this article and shows a view westwards down the Main Street in the village of Barton-under-Needwood, a scene that most village residents would have seen every day of their lives.

Image © and courtesy of Nigel Aspdin

The shop occupying the corner of the large double-story building in the centre of the photograph is identified by the large sign above the window as that of William Woodroffe, draper and grocer (Harrod, 1870). There are two figures in front of the shop, who would appear to be young boys. Woodroffe and his wife Maria did indeed have two sons, aged 10 and 3 at the time of the 1871 Census, but they also had young lads and lasses working in the shop, so any attempt at identification would really just be wild speculation.

Image © and courtesy of Ordnance Survey

The building, apparently now known in the village as the old parsonage, is shown in the centre of this extract from an early to mid-1880s Ordnance Survey map of the village (above), to the north-west of St. James' Church, while my interpretation of the photographer's approximate field of view is shown in the satellite image (below) taken from GoogleMaps.

Image © Infoterra Ltd & Bluesky and courtesy of Google Maps

Image © and courtesy of Nigel Aspdin

Along the main street, several more figures can be seen. Two women in the traditional conical, hooped skirts of the 1860s are standing on the pavement looking towards the photographer, perhaps interrupted on their way to the store. Further down the Main Street are two horse-drawn carts.

Image © and courtesy of Nigel Aspdin

The 1871 Census reveals that the buildings immediately adjacent to Woodroffe's on the Main Street - clearly visible in Farmer's view - were occupied by George Tunnicliffe, a dispensing chemist, Edward Tolley, a hairdresser, Joseph Chamberlain, a retired bootmaker, and John Holland, the postmaster.

Image © and courtesy of Nigel Aspdin

In the distance a number of buildings can be seen, all on the northern side of the Main Street. From my interpretation of the census enumerators sheets, in conjunction with the old Ordnance Survey map shown above, I believe the shop with the awning may have been occupied either by Amelia Pullin, draper & chemist, or Mrs Sarah Eliza Barnes, grocer/shopkeeper. That shop appears to be on the north-east corner with Cowberry Lane, and the building on the opposite (north-west) corner, the large windows of which can be seen directly behind the carts, may have been occupied by William Jones, grocer. The 1871 census suggests that the photographer William Farmer lived in the house immediately west of Jones' shop, which is not quite visible in this photograph.

Between 1872 and 1874, the Farmer family moved to Casey Lane, Charles Street, Horninglow (now a suburb of Burton-on-Trent) where William Farmer obtained a license to sell beer. After a couple of appearances at the Burton-on-Trent Petty Sessions in May 1876 and September 1877 for selling beer outside the regulation hours, he appears to have given up the business, because the 1881 Census shows him work as, of all things, a clockmaker. It seems likely that he was employed by one of several clock and watch makers in Burton-on-Trent as he is not included in the list of tradespeople in Kelly's 1880 trade directory.

William Farmer died, aged 63, in late 1883 in the Burton Registration District. None of his children appear to have followed him into the photographic business. Nor have I been able to find any connection with the photographer Thomas Farmer (b. 1827) who was living in Willington, Derbyshire in April 1881, or with Albert Farmer (Farmer's Photographics), who were active in Derby in the 1920s.

In the next article (Part 3), I will investigate the possible subjects of the wedding photograph.


E.R. Kelly's Post Office Directory of Staffordshire, 1868, from Ancestry
J.G. Harrod & Co.'s Directory of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland & Staffordshire, 1870, from the University of Leicester's Historical Directories
E.R. Kelly's Post Office Directory of Staffordshire, 1872, from Ancestry
F. Wright's Directory of South Derbyshire, 1874, from the University of Leicester's Historical Directories
E.R. Kelly's Post Office Directory of Staffordshire, 1880, from Ancestry
The Derby Mercury Newspaper 1801-1900, images from the British Library and Gale Cengage
Index to GRO Births, Marriages & Deaths from FreeBMD
UK Census 1841-1901 indexed images from Ancestry

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

A mystery marriage in Barton-under-Needwood (Part 1)

The three cartes de visite which are featured in today's blog article have been in my collection, as the result of an eBay purchase, for a couple of years. To be honest, I've looked at them several times as possible subjects for Photo-Sleuth and each time have put them into the too hard basket, probably merely of local or topical interest. On the most recent occasion I chanced upon a line of enquiry which is now leading me on a lengthy research journey. This journey is not yet complete, and I still don't know whether I'm nearing the pot of gold or merely barking up the wrong proverbial tree. However, I would like to share some of the excitement in the discoveries that I'm making with readers, and have decided that the best way to do this particular one would be through a series of installments. I hope that will give more of a feel for the breakthroughs and/or disappointments as the investigation proceeds.

As always, I value comments and suggestions on how to proceed, either as comments (below) or by email (here).

Image © and collection of Brett Payne

The first portrait shows what appears to be a wedding group, with the bride and groom seated, and three men standing behind them. It is an outdoors portrait, with the group arranged on a checked blanket in front of a building with a painted or whitewashed brick wall, a door and a low window. The door may be a double one - it is difficult to see clearly. The window is so low down in relation to the door and ground level that it probably opens into a basement room.

The bride, looking down towards the ground in front of the photographer, is dressed in white wedding gown with veil, and is holding a bouquet of flowers. Unfortunately, the effect of the bright sunlight on the white dress has meant that little of its shape and form is visible. The groom, also looking slightly downwards and to the right, is dressed in a dark frock coat with matching trousers and waistcoat. He has a chain attached to a button of the waistcoat, perhaps with the other end securing a fob watch hidden in a hip pocket.

The three men standing behind the bride and groom are all wearing double-breasted frock coats with flowers in their lapels. Only the man on the right, who looks to me to be in his mid- to late twenties, with a moustache and very full beard, carrying a top hat, is staring directly into the camera. To his right is a man with a moustache and Dundreary whiskers, perhaps in his late twenties or thirties. On the far left, is the youngest man in the group, with both hands resting on the groom's shoulders.

Image © and collection of Brett Payne

The second photograph is an unusual one for this period. It shows a woman dressed in dark clothes, wearing a hat, a bead necklace and dangly earrings, feeding something to two rather well behaved dogs, one fairly large and the other much smaller. The action takes place on a cobbled courtyard in front of what appears to be a large painted wooden double door with a simple, open latch. I have been unable to decide whether or not this woman is the same one who appears as the bride in the previous photograph.

Image © and collection of Brett Payne

The last CDV is in landscape format and shows a horse, dark with a white blaze on the left rear foot, being held by a man with reains attached to a bridle, on a cobbled courtyard and in front of the same double wooden door which appears in the previous photograph. I don't believe this man appears in the group photograph. His clothing, although fairly smart, is perhaps not as formal, and although his face is a little blurred, perhaps from movement, he doesn't look like any of the four in the wedding party.

Image © and collection of Brett Payne

The reverse of all three card mounts is identical. It shows a simple 1860s-style belt motif containing the words, "Farmer, Photographer / Barton-under-Needwood."

The design on the reverse of the card mount is typical of those from the mid- to late 1860s. However, from the thickness of card, the square the corners, the poses of the portraits, and the style of clothing worn by the subjects, I would estimate initially that it was taken in the late 1860s or early 1870s (this without any further information about the photographer or subjects).

In Part 2 I will investigate the photographer.

Henry & Henrietta Payne – A “Noble” Life

The theme for the 12th edition of the Smile for the Camera Carnival, hosted as usual on the blog Shades of the Departed, is “A Noble Life.” The connotation of this word that immediately occurs to me is akin to the first part of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) definition:

nō’ble 1. a. Illustrious by rank, title, or birth, belonging to nobility;
I don’t really know of anyone in my extended ancestral family who fits that rather grand description and, to be honest, I don’t really think that is what "Smile" host footnoteMaven contemplated. She elaborates:

“Show us a photograph of an ancestor, relative, or friend that is the embodiment of A Noble Life. A life that is worthy of those who came before and those who follow after. A Life filled with small but courageous acts; filled with love and honor. A simple life, an ordinary life, A Noble Life.”
The second part of the OED definition continues thus:

... of lofty character or ideals; showing greatness of character, magnanimous, morally elevated; splendid, magnificent, stately, imposing, impressive, in appearance; excellent, admirable.
A splendid cabinet card portrait of my great-great grandparents Henry Payne (1842-1907) and Henrietta Christina Benfield (c.1843-1914) comes immediately to mind. In that sense, I suppose that between them, they did lead what could be thought of as “noble” lives. I don’t have much direct evidence of the personal character of either of them, but I believe a great deal may be interpreted by a reader from an account of the experiences that shaped their lives, together with some contemporary reports.

Naturally, as was often the case in the male-dominated Victorian times through which they lived, it was Henry’s life which left the most significant paper trail, and has therefore been the most fruitful to research. I have little doubt, however, that Henrietta’s character was of no less influence in the lives of her children, grandchildren and those around her, even if her activities may have been conducted in a somewhat less public manner.

Image © and collection of Brett Payne, Colourised by Andre Hallam
Henry & Henrietta Payne, c. April 1898

This photograph of Henry and Henrietta was taken at the Frederick J. Boyes’ Electric Daylight Studio at 22/24 Osmaston Road, Derby, around April 1898. I can’t be sure what occasion might have precipitated their visit to a photographer, but it may have been to mark Henry’s recent retirement from the building trade. Henry would shortly celebrate his fifty-sixth birthday; Henrietta was only a few months younger, and they had been married for thirty-three years. They had seven children – four boys and three girls – and their second grandson had been born in January that year. Henry’s duties as Vaccination Officer to the Borough of Derby, a post to which he had been appointed some thirteen years earlier, would now became his primary focus during his semi-retirement.

Image © the Derby Local Studies Library & courtesy of Angela Hercliffe
139 St James' Road, Normanton,
the home of Henry & Henrietta Payne,

By this time Henry and Henrietta were settled residents of Normanton, a southern suburb of Derby, where they lived in a large house that Henry had built at the western end of St. James’ Road in 1893. Their two eldest sons Charles Vincent and Charles Hallam, both married by this time, lived further down St. James’ Road in two houses opposite each other on the corner with Hastings Street. Vincent had set himself up as an estate agent, while Hallam had taken over the family shop, a grocery and off-license, which they had been operating for twenty-two years. The younger children were all still living at home. Frank had been appointed vaccination officer for Burton-upon-Trent a year earlier. Lucy Mary was probably working as domestic servant, although she became a stationer’s assistant a short time later possibly at Clulow’s in Derby. Fred and the two youngest girls Lily and Helen, aged 18, 16 and 14, respectively, were presumably still at school.

This settled scene is perhaps indicative of the environment in which their grandchildren, including my grandfather, grew up in the 1890s and early 1900s. However, it was a sharp contrast to the several decades of drive and hard work that it had taken for Henry and Henrietta to overcome the enormous hurdles which beset their early years.

Henry was born on 8 May 1842 in the Staffordshire brewing town of Burton-upon-Trent to a carpenter/wheelwright Peter Payne (1801-1845) and his wife Ann Tipper (1807-1857). Their three earlier children born between 1833 and 1840 had all died in infancy, so Henry’s prospects from the start were not great. Not many details of his father’s life are known, except that he suffered badly with asthma, from which he died in February 1845, three months before Henry’s third birthday. Ann’s mother had died the previous year in Church Gresley, and in the interim her stepfather had remarried and moved south to Warwickshire. She had several half-siblings but they were poor and had young families of their own to look after. Peter’s parents had died in 1839, leaving little in the way of an inheritance, while most of his siblings had moved away, either to other counties or abroad.

Ann’s sister-in-law Harriott Bagnall, a widow like herself, remained in Church Gresley with her five children. The four young Bagnall sons, barely in their teens, supported the family by working in the coal pits. It is possible that Ann and Henry went to stay with them, but they may also have visited Ann’s half-sister Dorothy Lunn née Benfield, whose husband William Lunn was working as an agricultural labourer in Church Gresley and Woodville.

Image © 2007 Brett Payne
The Parish Church of St. Stephen the Martyr, Woodville, 2007

On Wednesday 1st March 1848 Henry was enrolled among the first intake of 150 day scholars at the then newly built St. Stephen's Daily and Sunday School at nearby Woodville, two months before his sixth birthday. Less than a fortnight later Henry was baptized at the parish church of St. Stephen's.

On 25 April 1850 Henry's mother Ann was caught stealing several items in the High Street, Burton-upon-Trent. She was imprisoned in Stafford County Gaol on a charge of theft, and three weeks later, on 14 May 1850, Henry was admitted as ‘destitute’ into the Ashby Union Workhouse, situated on the Loughborough Road north-east of Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leicestershire. Ann was charged at Stafford County Court with two counts of larceny, to which she entered guilty pleas. The first complainant was William Brunt, a tailor, draper and hatter, from whom she had taken two jackets, worth one pound, and a cloth cap, valued at four shillings. The second was William Stanley, a butcher, and the theft this time was of three pounds of beef, valued at one shilling.

Image © and courtesy of Staffordshire Past-Track
Reception Ward, Stafford Gaol, c.1869-1871
Image © and courtesy of Staffordshire Past-Track

She was found guilty of the charges, although in mitigation it was stated that she suffered from epilepsy, and the crime was considered to have been committed "while in a state of unconsciousness and absence of mind." Even without the epilepsy, it is not difficult to imagine Ann's dire circumstances: no husband, no close family, no means of income and an eight year-old child to care for. She joined her son in the workhouse roughly eight weeks later after her release from incarceration.

Image © and collection of Brett Payne
Workhouse or childrens' home, c.1880s
possibly in Nottingham

Henry and Ann appear to have spent most of the next five years in the workhouse. The Admittance & Discharge Registers show a series of comings and goings, with their spells outside the workhouse each being of only a few days’ duration. Worthy of note is the comment written at the time of Ann's re-admittance on Thursday 8th June 1854, stating that she was still "of unsound mind." The last known register entries for them show Henry still in the workhouse in October 1854, and Ann as an inmate in July 1855.

Image © and courtesy of Dover History

On 20 September 1857, Ann Payne died as the result of a terrible accident. The following is a report of the inquest from the Leicester Chronicle dated 3rd Oct 1857:

HARTSHORNE - An inquest was held on the 22nd ultim at Hartshorne, on the body of Ann Payne, widow, aged 50 years, whose death took place the Sunday morning previous from the effects of burning. The deceased was sitting alone in the workhouse, about nine o'clock at night, when, being suddenly seized with a fit (to which she was a subject), she fell against a table upon which there was a lighted candle, which candle falling upon her set her clothes on fire, the whole of which were consumed. The deceased lingered a few hours in excruciating pain, and the body on being viewed by the jury presented a most frightful sight. A verdict of "Accidental death" was returned.
Workhouse Funeral a Poor Woman is Distraught as the Body of Her Husband is Carried Away, by F. Wentworth

She was buried two days later in the parish churchyard of St. Peter’s, Hartshorne.

According to family legend, Henry started work at the age of nine hauling in a clay pit. He was then reputedly bound to a cobbler, but ran away and worked on farm at Smisby, and possibly other farms, till he was eighteen. Although I haven’t found documentary evidence of this, it was common practice for workhouses at this time to “farm out” children to various employers. It is conceivable, therefore, that Henry may have worked in a pit belonging to one of the several earthenware and firebrick makers in the Woodville area. The Ashby Workhouse had some ten acres of land, most of it under pasture, but the inmates using “spade husbandry” cultivated about three acres. The nearby village of Smisby was mainly an agricultural community, and Henry could have worked at any of a number of farms in the vicinity.

Image © & collection of Brett Payne
Unidentified policeman from Chesterfield, Derbyshire, c.1870

On the 18th February 1861 Henry joined the West Bromwich Police Force, having spent a year or so in partnership with his cousin Thomas Benfield as a blacksmith at Princes End, near Birmingham. The change seems to have suited Henry very well. He rose quickly through the ranks and in the space of just over two years - by June 1863, soon after his twenty-first birthday, he had become the youngest sergeant in the force. However, Henry had itchy feet, and after resigning from the force on 7 July 1864, he moved to Burton-on-Trent and found work as a night watchman with the brewery firm of Ind Coope & Co., whose premises were at 120 Station Street. Five months later he married Henrietta Christina Benfield at Christ Church in Burton, describing himself as a book-keeper.

Image © & courtsey of Fabulous Masterpieces
Edouard Manet, A Bar at the Folies-Bergère, 1882
Courtsey of Fabulous Masterpieces

Information about Henrietta’s early life is still very sketchy and mostly reliant on secondary sources. Family legend has it that she was the illegitimate child of a chamber maid or barmaid who worked at a pub or small hotel in Burton-upon-Trent, the father being a wealthy-Jewish American industrialist named Gold. According to census records, she was born between 1840 and 1843 in Notting Hill or Camden Town, London. The identities of neither of her parents are very clear, but the painting of a barmaid at the Folies-Bergère by Édouard Manet is the image that always comes to my mind when I think of her mother. It seems very likely that Ann Tipper’s half-sister Dorothy Lunn informally adopted her, although the 1851 Census actually shows her lodging with an apparently unrelated family at Woodville. A decade later she was working as a housemaid for a retired army surgeon and his family in the village of Tutbury, northwest of Burton.

Shortly after their marriage they moved to Derby, where Henry found employment with Midland Railways as a pointsman. Having saved ten pounds, and assisted financially by a local solicitor named Sale who for some reason took a shine to him, Henry started building houses in the suburb of Litchurch. Henrietta, in between giving birth to and looking after three boys between 1868 and 1874, operated a shop from their successive homes in Douglas and Grange Streets, being described in various documents as a provision dealer, grocer, baker and off-license holder.

In September 1870, Henry made a trip to the United States. According to his son, he first "traveled to Virginia, looking for a farm. He put his watch and chain on a farm in or near Omaha, Nebraska, but didn't take it up." One of Henry’s granddaughters claims that Henry went looking for Henrietta's father, Mr. Gold. Whatever the reason, it appears that he must have returned to Derby after just a few months.

Image © and courtesy of Barbara Ellison
83 St James' Road, Normanton
The Payne family shop, 1876-1940s

In 1875 Henry built a house in St James' Road, Normanton for a curate. For some unknown reason, the curate never seems to have taken the house, so the family instead moved there, marking the start of a Payne association with that street which lasted for some eight decades. They successfully applied for an “out-door beer license” and opened a new shop in the part of the house situated on the corner with Hastings Street. Between the late-1870s and the early 1890s, Henry developed most of St James' Road and the adjacent Crewe Street, building a total of about 50 houses there, chiefly for letting.

In late 1877 Henry Payne left Derby with his family, by then including a daughter Lucy Mary almost a year old, and spent a few months living at Ash House, Turnditch, where it is possible that he built a new infants classroom at the National School. In August 1878, they returned to St James' Road, and the two older boys were re-enrolled at St Andrews Middle Class School, Litchurch. Henry had the off-license transferred back to his name on 8 October 1878.

Then in late 1879, Henry made a bold decision to try again to emigrate with his family to the United States, and an advertisement appeared in The Derby Mercury offering for sale "29 dwelling houses & business premises situate in Litchurch and New Normanton ... with instructions from Mr. Payne (who is leaving England.)" Henry sailed with his 13-year-old eldest son Charles Vincent from Liverpool to Philadelphia on board the S.S. British Crown, arriving on American soil on 2 March 1880, and "took up" a farm near Bladensburg, about four miles north-west of Washington D.C. They must have moved fast to find the farm and get the crops planted by late April or early May, and the census taken the following months shows a farm labourer Thomas Cash boarding with them.

Image © the British Library and courtesy of Gale Collections
Advertisement in The Derby Mercury, 26 May 1880

Henrietta had given birth to their fourth son Fred at St. James' Road in December the previous year, and probably waited in Derby for Fred to get a little older, and for word from Henry, before setting out to join them. She was probably also taking care of important financial and administrative matters. A sale notice in The Derby Mercury dated 26 May 1880 offers for sale "the whole of his superior household furniture and effects" by "Mr Henry Payne (who is leaving England.)"

Henrietta left Derby for the docks at Liverpool, nursing Fred and with Hallam, Frank and Lucy Mary in tow, in late June. It must have been some adventure for the children, and not a mean feat for Henrietta to achieve with four small children.

Image © and by kind courtesy of the Maryland Historical Society Library
Port of Baltimore c. 1875

They arrived at the bustling port of Baltimore on 7 July aboard the SS Hibernian and joined Henry and Charlie at the farm shortly after. Even after the rigours of an Atlantic crossing, they do not seem to have had much time for rest and recuperation. "After being there about two days Hallam fell out of buggie and broke right arm ... went to hospital in Washington for 4-5 weeks." In the meantime, Charlie "went into Washington one day and as he came back was set upon by two niggers." Of far greater importance, "Mother was bad through change of climate." They returned to England soon after Hallam's recovery, "leaving all crops growing (2 nigger cabins on farm)," by 16 November 1880, when the beer license for the shop in St James’ Road was transferred back into Henry’s name. The UK census dated 3 April 1881 shows them again running the family grocery at 38 St. James' Road.

While they had been in America a new school, St James’ Road Board School, had been completed directly across the road from the shop, and Charlie, Hallam and Frank all enrolled there. Henrietta had two more girls, Lily and Helen, in March 1882 and October 1883, respectively. Henry went back to building more houses in St. James' Road and Crewe Street. A plan dated January 1885, by Edward Fryer, Architects & Surveyors is entitled, "Proposed Houses - St. James' Road Derby - for Mr Payne." In August 1887, Henry tried to obtain a full license as an "innkeeper or victualler, retailer of beer, wines spirits and liqueurs (to be drunk on the premises) at a house and shop situate at 38 St. James’ Road." Several local landowners and residents, clergymen from nearby churches, and members of the School Board strenuously opposed this, and it was denied. He tried again, also unsuccessfully, in August 1891.

In January 1883 Henry, who described himself as a house agent, made an unsuccessful attempt at election to the post of Relieving Officer for the Derby Board of Guardians. Two and a half years later, on 29 September 1885, and "after a spirited ballot," he was elected by the Board of Guardians as Derby’s first Vaccination Officer, a position which he was to hold for the next twenty years. The Derby Poor Law Union administered the post from offices at Becket Street in Wardwick, Derby. By his own admission, the duties involved resulted in him being "the most hated man in Derby," and occasionally brought him into conflict with his employers. The Minute Books of the "Dispensary Visiting Committee" of the Derby Board of Guardians contains numerous references to Henry and his work. A resolution made in July 1891 demonstrates the prejudice existing against "arm-to-arm" methods, and notes the introduction of a Calf Lymph vaccine. Statistics quoted show that by the first half of 1893, Henry was already vaccinating 100 people a month, representing roughly half the births in the borough. The minutes include numerous records of legal proceedings initiated by Henry against defaulters, as well as several occasions where Henry had disagreements with the Board, mostly concerning remuneration for his services. Henry eventually retired from this post in about 1905.

Image © and courtesy of PortCities London

A newspaper obituary written for Henry in The Derby Mercury after his death in April 1907 contained the following:

"He carried out his duties in strict accordance with the orders of the Local Government Board in London, and his action was often made the occasion of adverse criticism on the part of local anti-vaccinators. Mr. Payne was a conscientious man who had a keen sense of duty, and did it. The nature of the official position which he held was perhaps not exactly one that conduced towards the making of hosts of friends. Still, those people who had more than a passing acquaintance with the deceased gentleman could not help but know of many sterling qualities which lay beneath a somewhat brusque exterior."
The April 1891 Census showed Henry and Henrietta at the house/shop on the corner of St. James’ Road/Hastings Street with five of their children. Apart from his vaccination duties, Henry was listed as a rent collector and still held the "off beer licence," although it was Henrietta who ran the shop. Presumably this rent was from houses that he had built and still owned, as he was still shown as a builder in trade directories and other documents as late as 1896.

When Charlie and Hallam returned from Chicago in November 1892, after working on the World's Columbian Exposition, Henry employed them to do joinery and other building work on houses that he was building in Crewe Street. They may also have worked on the large house that Henry built at the western end of St. James’ Road, number 139 which they named “The Hollies,” and into which Henry, Henrietta and the remaining children moved in 1894. It was about this time that Henry retired from the building business and Henrietta from an active role in the shop. Charles Vincent, his wife and young son moved into the shop, took over the licence in June 1894 and ran the family business for a couple of years, but then turned it over to Hallam and his wife in February 1896, and became an estate agent. Presumably he was managing the family’s growing property portfolio which, apart from his parent’s numerous houses, may have included properties that Charles Vincent and Hallam were developing and leasing out.

By April 1901 they still had five children living at home, although all except the youngest Helen were working. A year later, Henry and Henrietta retired to a house in nearby Sunny Hill, while Charles Vincent, Amy and their two children moved into number 139.

Henry died at 1.00 pm on Monday 1st April 1907 at "The Hollies," Sunny Hill after being ill for some time and was buried later that week at Normanton Cemetery. Among the hymns sung was "Now the labourer's task is o'er", fitting perhaps for someone who had worked hard from the age of nine almost until his death at the age of sixty-five to achieve so much.

Henrietta Payne, c.1910

Henrietta moved back to 139 St James’ Road and lived there until her death on Wednesday 18th February 1914. A memorial service was held at St. Augustine's Church on the following Sunday, and she was buried in the family plot at Normanton Cemetery.
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