This blog is designed to record the findings of our family history, mainly for the benefit of the family, and to document the dead ends, the breakthroughs and the journey.
I’ll post the family stories as I’ve written them to now, and I’ll be grateful to anyone who can add further information or pictures, or point out errors.
Particular thanks to my sister Julia and my cousin Mandy who between them have done much more of the work than I have.

Friday, 21 September 2012

Whitehouse Family Story


Whitehouse is one of those names that is very familiar and common, but a hundred years ago was only common in the Black Country. There are some instances in Wales and the North West, but it doesn’t show at all in the south and east of England.  Pretty obviously it originally meant someone who lived in a white house. The Guild of One Name Studies has one person interested in the name,. In fact they have more in common with our Morrises, being platers and gun barrel makers. but his family come from Birmingham and I can’t see a relevance to ours.

The Whitehouses join our story when Sarah Whitehouse married Samuel Hamlet in 1845.

Sarah Whitehouse1823- 1876

According to IGI Sarah was christened on 2nd March 1823 at St Martins in Tipton. Her parents were William Whitehouse and Deborah (nee Perkins).
The 1841 census shows her living with her parents and siblings in New Road Tipton, and on 10th August 1845 she married Samuel Hamlet (or Hamblet as they were spelling it that week) at the parish Church in Dudley. At that stage she was living in New Hall street, as was Samuel , although her parents were still at New Road.

At the time of the 1851 census Samuel and Sarah are living at Tividale in Rowley Regis with 2 sons Samuel William (1847) and Joseph, our great grandfather (1850). They appear to have moved to Rowley Regis between 1847 when Samuel Jnr was born in Dudley, and 1850 when Joseph was born in Rowley Regis.
By 1861 they have moved again to Park Lane Tipton, and here there is a mystery. They have  daughter Mercey, and there son Samuel is only 10. I can’t find a record of the Samuel Jnr dying and another son  being called Samuel. It should also be noted that Joseph, who we know was born in 1850 is listed as being born in 1857 in the transcript of this census, giving his age as 4, while the original looks more like 14 to me. Still not right, but closer.

As we know Samuel Snr died in a pit accident in 1862 when Sarah was 39. In the 1871 census she is shown as a widow living with Joseph, now 22 and Mercy who is 14 at Sedgley Road East in Tipton.
The newspaper reports of Samuel’s death say that he had 6 children. I have found five so far.
Joseph 1849
Samuel 1851
John 1852-1859
Isaac 1855-1857
Mercy 1857

John aged 8 was drowned in the pit shaft at the same colliery as his father in 1859, three years before the death of his father. The death certificate quotes from the coroner that "how he got in the said water no evidence to shew". Isaac died aged 2 of inflammatory dropsy. Samuel Jnr has disappeared. I can’t find him in the censuses or a record of his death.
Joseph married Sarah Emily Mills in 1873 and Mercy (with another spelling variation – Humphlett) married Henry Brakewell in1876. Sarah died in 1876, aged 53 of liver disease. .She was still living at Sedgley  Road and her death was registered by her sister Anne  who is married to Joseph Brierwood.

William Whitehouse 1791-1874 and Deborah Perkins 1795-1877

I can’t find a definitive birth record for William. According to IGI there were two William Whitehouses christened at St Mary’s Handsworth in the relevant time period  Wiiliam 1 was christened on 26th June 1791 and his parents were Daniel and Elizabeth. William 2 was christened on 21st September 1792 and his parents were Isaac and Eleanor. Often you can make a sensible guess by the use of a name in the next generation, but William and Deborah had sons called Daniel and Isaac and a daughter called Sarah. Until I can get to the parish records and check William and Deborah’s marriage records I won’t know which is the right record, and the trail ends here for now.
According to the various censuses both William and Deborah were born in West Bromwich and William was boatman.

William and Deborah married at St Mary’s Handsworth on 9th September 1816 according to IGI.
They spent their married life at New Road Tipton. Looking at the map, New Road is very close to the Walsall Canal and quite near to the junctions of the Walsall Canal with the Tame Valley Canal and the Birmingham Canal, and Dudley Port. Tipton – Venice of the Midlands.

William and Deborah had 6 children

William                 1821
Sarah                     1826
Daniel                   1826
Anne                     1830
Isaac                      1833
Thomas                                1839

In the 1851 census William and his sons Daniel and Isaac are boatmen. Their youngest son Thomas is shown as being born in Church Aston Shropshire, perhaps on a boat trip. They have a lodger , Joseph Brierwood (who later married their daughter Anne) and their grandson unnamed Hamlet aged for is also there. This is most likely Samuel Jnr, although he also shows on his parents census form.
By 1861 William, now 69, has stopped being a boatman and is a labourer. His sons, Daniel 35,, Isaac, 28 and Thomas 21 are all unmarried, living at home and working as boatmen.

In 1871 only Isaac is still at home, although there is also another grandson, Thomas,  and by 1881 William and Deborah are both dead and Isaac and Thomas are lodging with a family called Partridge in Mill Street, just across the A461 from New Road.
William died in 1874 and Deborah in 1877

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