William Cross of Harbury

Discussion in 'Warwickshire' started by TonyV, Jun 11, 2013.

  1. TonyV

    TonyV He who cleans up after his ancestors...

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    One of my maternal great grandfathers was brought up and probably born in Harbury. The 1841 Harbury census record suggests that he was born around 1827/8 but if I have his parents' marriage correctly that was not until 1832. The parents are probably John Richard Cross and Mary (nee Cooper).

    Maybe the genetic father and mother just didn't get married until 4-5 years after he was born but I feel that this would have been unusual at that time.

    I could have the parents marriage incorrect but I can't find anything better.

    In the absence of the obvious I am concerned that William was not in fact the son of his 1841 census father and that he was adopted after the marriage. If so I probably won't be able to find his genetic father but I have to try don't I?

    Thoughts, suggestions and help all gratefully received. I don't live near enough to Warwicks. Record Office to warrant a visit to deal with this matter.

    cheers

    Tony
     
  2. Flook

    Flook A True Gentleman. Rest in Peace.

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    Tony

    I’m not promising anything but I wonder if I may have discovered a chink of light showing through your brickwall.


    (Census records in care of TNA)

    1841 Census: 
HO 107 Piece 1135 Bk/fol 6/21 Page 8
    Address: Binsworth End, Harbury, Warwickshire

    John Cross, 35, Gardener, Born Warwickshire
    Mary Cross, 30, Born Warwickshire
    William Cross, 14, Born Warwickshire
    Frederick Cross, 10, Born Warwickshire
    Ann Cross, 8, Born Warwickshire
    Thomas Cross, 5, Born Warwickshire
    Elizabeth Cross, 4, Born Warwickshire
    Sarah Cross, 2, Born Warwickshire


    1851 Census: 
HO 107 Piece 2077 Fol 99 Page 14
    Address: Binsworth End, Harbury, Warwickshire

    John Cross, Head, married, 46, Gardener, Born Harbury Warwickshire
    Mary Cross, wife, married, 45, Born Harbury Warwickshire
    Thomas Cross, son, 16, Gardener, Born Harbury Warwickshire
    Sarah Cross, daughter,13, Born Harbury Warwickshire
    John Cross, son, 8, Born Harbury Warwickshire
    Fanny Cross, daughter, 6, Born Harbury Warwickshire
    Eliza Cross, daughter, 4, Born Harbury Warwickshire

    I can’t find William in 1851 but in 1861 he appears to be living in Stilton with his wife Amelia and their daughter Eva aged 2 and son George aged 2 months. William is a Gardener. [RG9 Piece 964 fol. 92 page 17]. They had married in Kenilworth in 1858 (see below).

    Going back to the 1841 Census, the marriage between John Cross and Mary Cooper was at Harbury on 30th September 1832 (Ancestry’s Warwickshire Marriage Records 1754-1910).Their next appearance in the records is a few months later on 10th February 1833 when Frederic (sic) son of John and Mary and Anne daughter of John and Mary were baptised at Hanbury (Ancestry’s Warwickshire Baptism Records 1813-1910). The next entry is for the baptism of Thomas son of John and Mary on 21st December 1834.

    As you’ve said, William’s date of birth on the 1841 census predates John and Mary’s wedding but so also does the birth date of Frederic (c1831) and even Anne would have been conceived before the marriage. This looks significant.

    William Cross married in Kenilworth Parish Church on 26th January 1858. He describes himself as a gardener and his father as ‘John Cross, Gardener’.

    Frederick appears to have married Elizabeth Reading in Warwick RD in March Quarter 1850 but I haven’t found an image of the marriage register.

    Ann(e) however is interesting as she appears to be on the 1851 census as an 18 year old farm servant living in Snitterfield, Warwickshire [HO 107 Piece 2074 fol. 201 page 2] and later the same year married Thomas Maries at Wellesbourne, Warwickshire on 7th (?) November 1851. She gives her father as “Thomas Cross, Gardener”.

    Now if William, Frederic and Anne were someone else’s children, as seems likely, then their father could well be Thomas Cross (whoever he may be) & Thomas Cross in the 1841 census would have been John and Mary’s first natural child.

    Do you think that’s likely?
     
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  3. TonyV

    TonyV He who cleans up after his ancestors...

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    Evening Flook and thank you very much for all that work. I had most of the references but the extracts from the Warwicks Baptisms are useful confirmations of stuff I got from FamilySearch.

    John Cross had a brother Thomas who married Elizabeth Sprawson and they also had a daughter called Ann. I think that it was she who married Thomas Maries and therefore the reference to her father being Thomas Cross fits. Sadly that seems to destroy your theory, at least the part of it suggesting that Thomas Cross was the father of the three older children.

    Nevertheless the idea that there was another family before the one started by John and Mary seems very likely. It suggests that John may have married twice and that his first wife died after giving birth to the three of them. So what would be exceptionally useful is a search for a marriage of John (Richard) Cross around 1825-28 +/- about 2 years, or a death of a female adult Cross in Hor near Harbury around 1831/2. I'll start on Family Search immediately

    Thank you again

    Tony
     
  4. Flook

    Flook A True Gentleman. Rest in Peace.

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    Hello Tony

    I didn’t mind putting all that stuff down in my previous post because I needed it myself to remind me what I was doing! I thought it might also be useful for anyone else who wanted to wade in on this.

    The Ann theory is well demolished but I haven’t given up yet and I wonder if I may have found an iron ball that might demolish your brickwall. So here’s Flook's theory number 2!

    I’ve been looking through Ancestry’s Warwickshire “Parish Rates, Weekly Pay, Vestry Minutes” for Harbury and I’ve noticed some interesting entries. (Where I’ve put an image number, this refers to the page in the Harbury film on Ancestry).

    3rd November 1827 marks the first appearance of a payment by the parish to a Mary Cooper: “Mary Cooper for her child … 2s 0d” [image 49]. Then on 3rd December 1827 there is an entry for ‘Constables expenses apprehending John Cross & taking him to Southam…6s 0d” [image 51].

    The 2 entries (same date) directly beneath this, read “Order’s of Filliation & expenses….10s 0d / Journey for (ditto)…2s 6d.”. It’s not clear whether these 2 entries relate to John Cross or might just be other business entered in the accounts on the same day.

    On 22nd December 1827 we have “Mary Cooper’s child 3 week’s pay ….6s 0d.” and from 29th December 1827 Mary Cooper seems to be in regular receipt of weekly payments for her child. She appears to receive 2s 0d a week. (Note that there is always an entry for “Cooper’s Child” above any Mary Cooper entry. This pre-dates Mary’s appearance in the accounts and seems to relate to a completely different person).

    In the Overseer’s accounts there is an entry dated 3rd December 1827 “Recd of Jno Cross for expenses…£1-0-0.” [image 56] and on 20th March 1828 there is an entry “Recd of Jno Cross 15 weeks pay (@) 2/- to March 22…£1.10s.0d”. [image 67].

    John Cross was still making regular payments in August 1830 [image 79] but before this (possibly) on 20th March 1830 Mary Cooper starts receiving payment for 2 children [image 80] and by at least April 1831 John Cross was paying 4/- a week to the parish – which looks like the equivalent of supporting 2 children. [image 97].

    The last payments I can see for Mary Cooper are in March 1832 (image 114) just as the last payments by John Cross appear to be in the same month (image 117).

    So these two children could be William and Frederick. Now if Ann (baptised February 1833) was born, say, in January ’33 then it would be possible to hypothesise that John took responsibility for Mary (and got her pregnant again!) at the time parish payments stopped around about March/April 1832 before they got married in the September.

    That’s another of Flook’s theories anyway!

    What would be nice to find would be a bastardy order or something similar, which tied John to Mary after his arrest in December 1827.

    You’d need to double-check all this of course but at least it’s something you may want to get your teeth into.
     
  5. Flook

    Flook A True Gentleman. Rest in Peace.

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    Oh I forgot to say that the 1832 marriage register entry (on Ancestry) for John Cross and Mary Cooper's wedding has him as a bachelor and her as a spinster. One of the witnesses was Thomas Sprawson (who seems to be a regular witness and was a member of the Vestry if I remember correctly). The other witness, interestingly , was a Sarah Cross (friend of Mary and sister of John??).
     
  6. TonyV

    TonyV He who cleans up after his ancestors...

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    Hello again Flook. I think that Flook's second theory is great and probably spot on. I haven't subscribed to Ancestry for a few years but clearly I need to re-consider that decision if the current records are as you reveal.

    I'm a novice on the subject of bastardy bonds but having looked up 'Order of Filiation' I wonder whether they are in effect (or in fact) the same thing i.e. an order by local justices that a man is genetic father of a child and an order to pay maintenance. I noted that Bastardy Bonds ceased in 1834 so this case was one of the last before the Poor Law changes came into effect.

    My theory that John had an earlier marriage now seems to be incorrect and certainly I couldn't find an obvious earlier wife or similarly a death of any half-suitable candidate. He was clearly a bit of a bad lad and given that they had a repeat event two years later she was no saint either. What I now find slightly surprising was that they didn't get married earlier, but there could be all sorts of reasons for that and I'll almost certainly never know.

    As I said above, John's older brother married a Sprawson and Sarah Cross was the youngest sister.

    Thank you detective Flook. You are in indeed a superior genealogist.

    cheers
    Tony
     
  7. Flook

    Flook A True Gentleman. Rest in Peace.

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    If only...(but thanks Tony :))...
     
  8. mugwortismy cat

    mugwortismy cat Tenacious to the End!

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    I like your modesty, but have to say I found that detective work of yours most impressive, (and convincing) C|:-) . Well done!

    Tony must be chuffed to bits :)
     
  9. TonyV

    TonyV He who cleans up after his ancestors...

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    Chuff chuff chuff (bits of chuff!). Hats off to you. C|:-)

    cheers
    Tony
     
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