Saturday, January 24, 2009

Daniel and Sarah Smith

Jumping back a little from my last genealogy post to Daniel and Sarah Smith, the grandparents with whom my grandfather Rupert was living in 1911 ...

Daniel Smith was baptised at Stewkley on 17th November 1833, and he married Sarah Bates there on 24th October 1861. Piecing together the census and baptism records, it looks as though Daniel was the eldest of seven children of James and Sophia Smith. His father was a farm labourer, and in 1861, aged 61, he was listed as "infirm". In the same year Daniel's twenty year old brother John was also an agricultural labourer, and Daniel himself a drillman - another farm worker, but one who operated a seed drill. All the women in the family, from 59 year old Sophia down to 11 year old Sarah were straw plaiters, an occupation which deserves a post of its own.

In 1881 Daniel was an agricultural labourer. His household included six children - five sons ranging in age from two to seventeen, and a 16 year old daughter, Elizabeth, who was working as a general servant. Another daughter, Minnie, was born a couple of years later. It was Elizabeth ("Lizzie Ellen") who married Thomas Faulkner and became my great-grandmother. When my grandfather was born in 1897 it was Sarah Smith who registered the birth, and there is a note on the birth certificate saying she was present at the time. In 1901 Daniel's occupation is given as "labourer (own account)", as opposed to his 22 year old son Albert who was a "farm labourer (worker)". Sarah, now 62, was a grocer on her own account. Only the two youngest children, 22 year old Albert and 18 year old Minnie were still living at home.

I don't have any photos of my own of relatives further back than my grandparents, but I made a lucky find in a book of old photos from Stewkley, Stewkley in Camera - a picture of my great-great-grandparents Daniel and Sarah Smith. (There appears to be an error in the caption - it gives her maiden name as Elizabeth Bates, when it should be Sarah Bates.)

1 comment:

Shari said...

What lovely photos! And they are smiling! (must be summer with the sun shining)