Mears/Deacon

Discussion in 'Sussex' started by John Deacon, Jul 26, 2015.

  1. John Deacon

    John Deacon New Member

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    Any information related to Charles Mears believed born in the Hastings area about 1868 married to Louisa Deacon in Brighton about 1886. Also Rebecca Mears born 1837/39 married to Charles Bacon about 1880 in the hastings area
     
  2. Daft Bat

    Daft Bat Administrator. Chief cook & bottle washer! Staff Member

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    Hello John - welcome to the forum. :)

    First thing might be to lay your hands on a copy of the marriage certificate for Charles and Louisa:
    December quarter 1887, Brighton registration district, volume 2b, page 381. They are listed as Charles MEARS and Louise DEACONS.

    The certificate may be ordered from the GRO using these references.

    This should provide the details of their respective fathers and so help to confirm where they are in the 1881 census.

    Good luck!
     
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  3. Chimp

    Chimp Moderator & Cheeky Human IMP Staff Member

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    Charles Mears married Louisa Deacons (sic)
    GRO Oct-Nov-Dec 1887, Brighton, Sussex Volume: 2B, Page: 381

    Ol' lightening fingers beat me to it again :D
     
  4. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    Charles Bacon married in the Hastings district in the first quarter of 1880. There is a Rebecca Mears with matching volume/page references in the GRO index.

    Is this them in Ore (in the Rural Sanitary District of Hastings) in 1881?
    (ref. RG 11/1021, f.62, p.19).

    Charles Bacon, 44, general dealer, b. Wadhurst, Kent
    wife Rebecca, 44, licensed hawker, b. Dunsall, Surrey
    and children Olive 15, Charles 14, Sarah 8, Richard 6, and Nelly 1 (all with surname Bacon), plus niece Elizabeth Tunnell aged 10, born in Ore. In a separate part of the same household is a Sarah Potter (shown as wife - presumably wife of someone who wasn't there, rather than being another wife of Charles!) and two Potter children.

    Going back 10 years to 1871 we find this rather complicated household in Ore (RG 10/1027, f.102, p.72):

    Rebecca Mears, head, unm., 34, hawker of flowers, birthplace N.K.
    Harriet Mears, daur, 9, do, b. Sussex Maresfield
    Olive Mears, daur, 5, b. Sussex Hastings
    Charles Mears, son, 3 b. Sussex Ore
    Anne Mears, daur, 2 b. Kent Benenden
    Charles Bacon, boarder, unm., 40, labourer, b. Sussex, Wadhurst
    Rebecca Mears, boarder, unm, 17, hawker of flowers, b. Kent [crossed out] Limehouse 'Mid' added
    Samson Bacon, boarder, 5, hawker of flowers, b. Sussex [Chailey?]
    Dinah Bacon, boarder, W(?), 72(?), birthplace N.K.

    (NB the original has lots of dittos - to make the transcript easier to follow I have replaced these with the missing words.)

    It appears from this that Rebecca's son Charles Mears (born about 1867/8 Hastings) on the 1871 census is the same person as 14 year old Charles Bacon in 1881. Charles Bacon senior was boarding with Rebecca in 1871 - so was he the father of her children?
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2015
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  5. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    Sorry, in my haste I left out the children's birthplaces from the 1881 census.
    15 year old Olive Bacon is shown as born in Hastings, while Charles, Sarah, Richard and Nelly Bacon are all shown as born in Ore.
    I've just noticed that next door on one side there was a Robert Bacon (36, general dealer, born Chichester), and more hawkers and dealers boarding with him. And on the other side was a William Tunnell (76) and his wife Martha (66) born Egham and Whitechapel respectively; perhaps they are related to Charles Bacon's niece Elizabeth Tunnell?
    I have tried following up these two Bacons in the hope of finding connections to Charles on earlier censuses. Nothing definite yet! But I will put some notes here in case these join up with other bits of the jigsaw later.

    In 1881, Samson Bacon, aged 15, born Chailey, is in Warbleton, Sussex, shown as nephew of Charles Porter, a 57(?) year old peg maker, born Portsmouth. Also in the household are Charles Porter's wife Sarah (47, born Blackston, Kent), daughter Sarah (19, born Chailey, Sussex), and niece Harriett Bacon (12, born Hastings) (RG 11/1044, f.24, p.16)
    I haven't yet spotted Harriett in 1871. In 1891 she may be the Harriett Clark with husband William Clark and some children, living with her unmarried mother Matilda Bacon (59, flower hawker, birthplace N.K.) in Ore. So is Matilda the mother of Samson too?

    Dinah Bacon might be the 50 year old Dianna Bacon who was one of four 'vagrants' listed together in Newick, Sussex, in 1851; she was a widow, birthplace N.K., occupation 'tramp'. There was a Caroline Bacon (aged 7, also a tramp, born Sussex Leominster) with her.

    The occupations (hawkers, peg makers, 'general dealers' etc.) and the mobility all point towards these families being travellers - which might present many challenges for research, but is bound to be fascinating. (I am very jealous, having never found any traveller ancestors myself.)

    P.S. oops I have got a bit carried away with the Bacons. I will try to get back to the Mears family . . .
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2015
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  6. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    but not quite yet! I couldn't resist another bit about the Bacons.

    The Hastings and St Leonards Observer of 26 January 1895 has a long article entitled 'The Ore Centenarian: the old lady interviewed'. It's about one Mrs Diana Bacon (who according to the local relieving officer was 103 years old) and refers to a photograph taken to mark her 100th birthday. The reporter sought out Mrs Bacon for an interview.

    Here are a few extracts:

    'lives in that portion of Ore known as Red Lake . . . a district where poverty abounds'

    'Mrs. Bacon lives with one of her granddaughters, Mrs. Roberts, herself the mother of seven boys and girls, and it was in her humble cottage . . . that I found the venerable lady, the picture of contentment and cheerfulness.'

    'She is slightly deaf, and her memory is rather weak, but her physical powers are remarkable. She is able to move about the house without assistance...'

    'her son and daughter-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Bacon . . . live in the adjoining cottage.'

    'Most of her sons and daughters, seven in number, have lived to a good age.'

    'Mrs. Bacon was twice married, her first husband's name being Shepherd.'
    'She could not recollect when her second husband died'

    ' "Are you a native of Hastings?", I enquired. - "No, I was born on the water, as my parents were coming home from India after my father had got his discharge. My father was a soldier for many years..." '

    There are numerous other mentions of her in the newspapers. There is a tree on Ancestry (called 'Isden Family Tree') which has a photograph thought to be Mrs Diana Bacon.
     
  7. John Deacon

    John Deacon New Member

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    Whoa thankyou all how did you do that
     
  8. Ma-dotcom

    Ma-dotcom A Bonza Little Digger!

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    By just being JANE?

    Hi John, good to see you. meet Jane....
     
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  9. John Deacon

    John Deacon New Member

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  10. John Deacon

    John Deacon New Member

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    Have just discovered Louisa Deacons born Epsom 1871 father William born Ripe 1838 Married Elizabeth Willet born Brighton 1839 from the Johnson family tree which is correct as I recognise the photographs. How can I obtain the Johnson Tree? also unable to find details for William & Elizabeth Deacon.Plus is it possible that Tunnel could be Funnel, as it is believeded that Rebeccas mother Martha remarried. Any suggestions
     
  11. John Deacon

    John Deacon New Member

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  12. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    Sorry for the delay in getting back to you, John. I am a bit overloaded with work at the moment and supposed to ration my time on the forum during the week.
    There do seem to be quite a lot of Funnells around so I went back and had a look at the 1881 census in case I had mis-read it. Here are William and Martha and the people either side of them:
    William Tunnell in Ore 1881.JPG
    I have included the previous two people in my snip because conveniently one has a surname beginning with T (Thompson) and the other begins with F (French). There is quite a distinctive little crossbar on the F, which isn't in William & Martha's surname.

    So I'm pretty sure it does say Tunnell on this particular census, but I'll see if I can find anything else about them. It is tempting to think that Martha might be the same person as Martha Mears: certainly worth investigating.
    I deliberately don't put my family trees on Ancestry and don't know how you go about sharing information with others. Hopefully someone else will know the answer though.
     
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  13. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    From FreeBMD I see that a Martha Mears married in the last quarter of 1843 in the Hailsham registration district. The GRO reference is given as volume 7, page 575. By clicking on the page number in the results list, you can see all the people who share that reference number. In this case there are eight; one of them is a William Tunnell.

    FamilySearch in its 'England, Sussex, Parish Registers' collection confirms that Martha Mears did marry William Tunnell, at Hellingly (which is in the Hailsham registration district) on 6 November 1843. Martha is shown in the transcript as daughter of Richard Mears. Now if she was the daughter of Richard Mears, either she hadn't been married before, or her previous husband had been a Mears and so she hadn't changed her name (or the transcriber has got the father's name wrong). You'd need to get the marriage certificate to see full details, unless they are online somewhere.

    So at the moment it's not clear if this is the same Martha Mears who is with William Mears, a hawker, and 3 year old Rebecca Mears in Withyham in 1841 (as well as Susanna Mears, 7, and Ellen Mears, 1). NB That census doesn't state relationships to the head of household, so we must be careful not to assume that the household consists of husband, wife and children.

    So far I haven't found William & Martha Tunnell in 1851, nor Rebecca Mears (who might be listed as Tunnell if Martha Mears/Tunnell was her mother).

    In 1861 William & Martha Tunnell were in Maresfield, Sussex, with children Elizabeth 18 (born Sussex - West Cheltington), Ann 16 (born Sussex Rotherfield), Richard 14 (b. Kent Hawkhurst), Samuel 12 (b. Kent Ash...), Frances 10 (b. Sussex Rotherfield) and Mary 6 (b. Sussex Battle).
    (RG 9/577, f.67, p.10)

    From the children's birthplaces they evidently moved around a great deal - so maybe got missed off the 1851 census. Or maybe I just haven't looked hard enough yet.
     
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  14. Ma-dotcom

    Ma-dotcom A Bonza Little Digger!

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    John if you can see the Johnson Tree indexed on Ancestry, go to the home page & at top is the owners name. Click on it & up will come new page with an orange rectangle 'contactjohnjohnson' Click it & away you go.
     
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  15. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    FamilySearch has a baptism at Hellingly of Eleanor daughter of Martha Mears, on 23 February 1840. This child could well be the 1 year old 'Ellen' on the 1841 census in the same household as William Mears, Martha Mears, Susannah and Rebecca.

    It now looks increasingly likely that the William Mears in that household is not Martha's husband but some other relative, and that Martha was a single mother. The fact that Eleanor was baptised in Hellingly also ties in well with her mother being the same Martha Mears who married William Tunnell at Hellingly in 1843. (FamilySearch also has some later baptisms of children of William & Martha Tunnell.)

    Unless a baptism or birth record can be found for Rebecca, it may be impossible to prove her parentage. I would think that the most likely scenario is that she too is daughter of single mother Martha Mears, who later married William Tunnell. It might help if we could identify the niece Elizabeth Tunnell, aged 10, who was with Charles & Rebecca Bacon in 1881. I can't see her in 1871 but perhaps she wasn't quite born yet.
     
  16. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    There is a marriage in the first quarter of 1859 in the Ticehurst district of an Eleanor Mears; there's only one person with matching volume/page references on FreeBMD: Benjamin Brazeel.

    Benjamin Brazeel (a basket maker, born Leigh Kent) is on the 1861 census in Wadhurst, Sussex. His wife Ellen is shown as 23 and born in Hellingly, Sussex (RG 9/572, f.23, p.15).

    Ten years later Benjamin & Elener Brazil and several children were hawkers in Baggers Bush, Dudleswell, Buxted. Like a number of other travelling families there (tramps, hawkers, basket makers) they are shown as living in 'tents & carts'.

    Edited to add: ooh, there is a tree on Ancestry ('Stephenson Family Tree') which has a scan of the marriage certificate of Benjamin Brazeel and Eleanor Meears. They married at Ticehurst parish church on 17 February 1859. Both then of Ticehurst. Eleanor was 20 years old. Her father's name is given as William Tunnill, labourer.
    Both Benjamin and Eleanor made their marks, as did the witnesses (William Stratton and Philadelphia Stratton).
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2015
  17. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    Whether William Tunnell/Tunnill was Eleanor's biological father or only stepfather is not clear from the evidence we've got so far. It may well be that Martha Mears had been living with William Tunnell before they married - perhaps he is the William 'Mears' with her on the 1841 census?

    Eleanor may be the Ellen Mears whose birth was registered in the second quarter of 1839 in the Worthing district. The birth certificate would confirm her mother's name; as Ellen/Eleanor was probably born out of wedlock, the father's details may be missing - though sometimes they are filled in on certificates from the early days of birth registration.

    I haven't yet spotted a birth registration for Rebecca - but she may have been born before the introduction of civil registration (in July 1837) or may have been one of those whose births went unregistered.
     
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  18. John Deacon

    John Deacon New Member

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  19. John Deacon

    John Deacon New Member

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    Thank you for all you have done to date, it is very interesting and complicating at the same time. My next visit to the libary will be Monday where did you view the 1881 census? I am unable to find it freeCen.
     
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  20. Huncamunca

    Huncamunca The Knowledgeable One

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    You're welcome, John. :) It's been just the sort of challenge I love, having to piece together clues from all over the place. There are still a lot of bits of the jigsaw missing though!
    I have an Ancestry subscription, which lets me see images of the census enumerators' books. If your library has access to Ancestry you should be able to see the images there and either save them on a memory stick or e-mail them to yourself.

    In the meantime you can see a transcript on FamilySearch:

    familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XQ97-GC2

    (scroll down to see the whole household).
     
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