Saturday, 29 December 2012

Echoes of our Past NEWS....... 29th December 1877

Read all about it……. Echoes of our past NEWS

What was in the local news this weekend in 1877?


*Christmas celebrations in 1877 –

The carol singers had been out in great numbers this year, although the quality of their musical talent was somewhat varied all were cheerfully received.  St Marys and All Saints Church in the centre of Chesterfield held a service in the morning and evening on Christmas Day, whilst Trinity Church held just the morning praise.

The evening service at St Marys and All Saints was full and all enjoyed the wonderful decorations which were designed by Mr Walter Stanton a local architect.  Walter sketched the plans and then a party of volunteers put the plan into action.  On entering the church at the west end two large scrolls were to be seen if one looked upwards, bearing the words “He came not to do his own will but the will of him that sent him” and “God of Gods. Light of light, very God of very God”.   Many varied crimson scrolls were placed around the church, evergreens, dried flowers, holly and berries, white wool and crimson cloth were also used to decorate. 

In the afternoon of Christmas day the Chesterfield Volunteers performed an open air concert in the Market Place for the public of Chesterfield poor and rich could all attend and enjoy the joyful sight. There was a true Christmas scene here as during the performance a slight fall of snow was to add sparkle and festivity to the proceedings, however some found the lure of the fireside to appealing and retired to their homes. 

Chesterfield Hospital was made as cheery as possible, decorations were strewn and in the entrance hall visitors were reminded “it is more blessed to give than to receive” alongside the collection box.  Within the operating room read the words “regain hope all ye that enter here” and another corridor held a banner reading “God bless our honorary surgeons for their labour of love”.  Those unlucky enough to be an inpatient in the hospital that Christmas were treated to special Christmas food and the carols and melodies were sung by the choir from the school of the Wingerworth Iron Company.  Plants were donated to add cheer by Mr Beard of Stonegravels and Mr Gosling of Brampton.  Some of the foliage used to decorate the hospital was donated by Chatsworth House. 

What about the Workhouse inmates how was their Christmas?

Well according to the Derbyshire Times “Christmas amongst the workhouse poor was very pleasant”.  They were treated to roast beef and plum pudding, in fact 25 stones of beef was said to have been consumed that day.  There were 296 inmates in the workhouse at Christmas 1877.  The adults were also given beer and tobacco and snuff as a luxury they would not be so lucky to have every day.  Apples and oranges were supplied by Mr Peter Warner and Mrs Cowdell gave buns which the inmates enjoyed.  For those who were lucky enough to be able to read then Mr Henry Slack of Low Pavement sent some magazines and periodicals for use in the workhouse.  After lunch the inmates were entertained by the Master Mr Shaw who read some “humorous sketches”.

All ages were given special treats to celebrate Christmas; the children who attended Barrow Hill Church Sunday School were given presents of bibles, prayer and hymn books and instructive story books.  The £5 used to purchase these treats had been collected from the church and local friends.  The elderly of Baslow around 100 of them were given tea by Mr Eades at the Wheatsheaf Hotel.  At Buxton the skating rink was opened from 2pm till 5pm and was a huge hit with the revellers “most of whom seemed as if they had never had skates on before”.


*Accident at the Malt Kiln –

John Langton a miner at Grassmoor Colliery had accompanied his father to work at the Malt Kiln on Sheffield Road as he had no work in the Christmas week.  That night he had gone to help his father in his work and had thrown some water on to the fire, when the flames grew and bounced back hitting John in the face.  His arms and face were badly burnt and he was sent straight away to Chesterfield Hospital for treatment.

*Child smothered –

A 20 day old baby girl was accidentally smothered to death when her mother had laid on her.  An inquest held at the Boot and Shoe Inn, Grassmoor heard how baby Rosanna Mellor daughter of George Mellor a coal miner of Grassmoor had been born on 5th December 1877. 

*Christmas Charity –

Messrs Lucas and son of Dronfield Foundry had kindly given out tickets to 30 poor widows to enable them to purchase groceries to the value of 5s.  This is a long standing custom which the company has carried out for many years now.

*Soldier missing his family –

A soldier named Thomas Foy, who was a native of Chesterfield, was brought before the bench after being charged with desertion.  Thomas was a private with the 65th Regiment of Foot and was stationed at Sheffield.  He deserted his post on 22nd December after he decided that he wanted to spend Christmas with his family and friends in Chesterfield. 

Thomas went on to celebrate his freedom and became drunk after which he gave himself up at the local police office.  He repented and asked if he could be set free to return to Sheffield, but this was not granted and Thomas was retained in custody until an escort could be found.


Christmas weddings at the Crooked Spire Chesterfield –

*George Flint to Fanny Shaw on 24th December

*Joseph Milward to Edith Rodgers on 24th December

*George Kemp to Mary Emma Wheatcroft on 25th December

*William Wheatcroft to Elizabeth Slack on 25th December

*Joseph Mitchell to Hannah Hays on 25th December

*Joseph Crabtree to Mary Brown on 26th December

At the Parish Church Staveley –

*Robert Waldren to Martha Elizabeth Carr on 24th December

*Joseph Berresford to Eliza Bradshaw on 24th December

*Joseph Drabble to Sarah Maude Mary Baldie on 25th December

*Henry Parker farmer of Upper Newbold, died suddenly on 23rd December aged 54 years
*Fanny Bertha Young aged 20 years, daughter of William Young of Calver

*Robert Frost aged 78 on 15th December at Bakewell
*Jabez Machin aged 83 years on 21st December at South Wingfield
*Harriett Elliot aged 23 years on 21st December at New Whittington
*George Todd aged 7 months at Grassmoor
*William Thompson aged 60 of Queen Street, Whittington on 20th December
*Leonard Harrison aged 1 years and 6 months on 25th December at Newbold Moor
*Football –
Heavy snow caused disruption at the game played on Wednesday 26th December between Chesterfield and Kimberworth.  The weather was so bad that many of the spectators were unable to get to the match.  The snow did not deter the Chesterfield players though and they won easily scoring 5 goals to none.  The goal scorers were – Bishop x2, Teesdale x2 and Evans x1.  The players on both teams were commended for their ability to play in such weather; “at half past two o’clock, the time announced for the beginning of the match, the snow fell with almost blinding density, ploughing their way through it very manfully until the game finished”.

Father Christmas does exist –
The Vicar of Youlgrave wrote to the Derbyshire Times to thank an unknown donor after the children had told him of a sack of oatmeal that had been left at the Church door by “old Father Xmas”.  The sack contained a note reading “this is to be given to fifteen of the most needy in the village”. 


Thursday, 27 December 2012

Update of the Past NEWS.... 22nd December 1894

Catch up on the full story of last weeks NEWS...........

*Job Moorhouse

Job took his own life rather tragically in last week’s news.  He was born in Thurgoland, Yorkshire in 1843, the son of stone mason Allen Moorhouse and his wife Elizabeth. 

Aged 18 Job is still living in Yorkshire, working as many of the locals did as a coal miner.  But by 1871 Job has left the family home along with his younger brother John and they now live in Chesterfield.  John is 21 years old and still works for the mining industry, but as a colliery clerk now a much more clean occupation.  Job is 28 years old and has a wife named Elizabeth and three small children; Allen aged 6 years, Job aged 3 years and baby Thirza aged 9 months.  The family all live together in the Shambles in the centre of Chesterfield.  Job is a provision dealer and Elizabeth is a dressmaker.

Job married Elizabeth Lee in the summer of 1863 at the Unitarian Chapel on Elder Way in Chesterfield.  Elizabeth died at the beginning of 1874.  The couple had at least four children as Mabel was born a year earlier in 1873.

Methodist Chapel, Saltergate, Chesterfield

Job was not long in finding a new wife as later that year he married Ann Woodward.   They also married in a non-conformist church, the Wesleyan Chapel on Saltergate.  Ann was a few years older than Job being born around 1837

Job and Ann continued to live in Chesterfield town centre and in 1881 they are living at 2 Daniels Yard, near to Low Pavement.  Job is now calling himself a “provision merchant” so it looks like he was gaining social standing by this time.  Ann was bringing up the two girls, Thirza and Mabel as her own and there was a servant girl named Sarah Jane Woodward, who may have been related to Ann.

Ten years on and the family have moved out of the town centre to live in the suburbs of Chesterfield.  They are living “near St Johns Church” in Littlemoor, Newbold.  Job is only 48 years old but is described as “living off own means”, so maybe the move was for his retirement.  His daughter Mabel had now married Robert Clarke a pork butcher and the couple are living with Job and Ann.

Job was a prominent member of the Chesterfield society; he was involved local matters such as the education of the children of Newbold and he attended meetings in 1870 to discuss the success and upgrade of the parish school room.  He was also appointed on the “committee of inspection” working with creditors delaing with the bankrupts of Chesterfield and the surrounding area.

He was a member of the Licenced Victuallers Association in 1881 – which may well have been the beginning of his love for the demon drink.

In 1880 Job is in the news as he was the victim of theft at this shop on Daniels Yard, when John Barrett a labourer of Bradshaw’s Place and Samuel Allen also a labourer of Dog Kennels were charged with stealing 72lbs of bacon from Job to the value of £1 10s.  The prisoners were remanded at large.
The first signs that thing's were not going smoothly begin to show in 1886 when on 17th June William Siddal was said to have threatened Job saying “I’ll kill you and will bury you same as you do your pigs”.  William was said to have entered the home of Job in a wild manner, waving a poker.  In his defence William stated that it was actually Job who had been “running up and down shouting with a whip and threatened to hit him with it”  William was ordered to keep the peace for 12 months and fined £5 bail.

Skip forward 4 years and this time it is Job who is in the defendant’s position.  In November 1890 he finds himself standing in front of the Borough Police Council accused of assaulting Isaac Shaw.  It appears that on 10th November Isaac Shaw of Brampton tells how he was at Mr Dyson’s the hairdresser’s in the Market Hall.  It was a cold day and Isaac had seated himself on a bench next to the fire when Job and begun picking an argument with him.  Job accused Isaac of robbing a man of £80, which Isaac denied and so Job suggested that the pair go outside to fight.  Isaac refused but then Job “struck him knocking him on to the floor and pulled a quantity of his beard out”.  Mr Dyson the hairdresser had to intervene and managed to pull the pair apart.  In his defence Job argued that Isaac and his friends were all “rogues and thieves from Brampton” Job was at the hairdressers with his brother John who stated that he had heard Mr Shaw (a friend of Isaac’s) call Job a “drunken --------“.  The confused case ended with each party being charged to pay their own costs and the case was dismissed.

Probate entry Job Moorhouse

And so on to 20th December 1894 when Job finally ended his own life.  Drink being the reason given for his temporary insanity.  He was living at Burton House, Littlemoor at the time and bequeathed the sum of £718 3s 9d.  Executors of the will were John Moorhouse bookkeeper, Thomas Furness chemist and druggist and Tom Harold Furness bookkeeper.    

Job’s wife Ann lived a long life and passed away in 1922 aged 86.  In 1911 she was still living at Burton House, Littlemoor the scene of that tragic day back in December 1894 when her husband took a knife to his own throat.  Living with Ann is her spinster younger sister 68 year old Esther Woodward.

~ ~ ~ X ~ ~ ~

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Echoes of our Past ~ NEWS..... 22nd December 1894

Read all about it……. Echoes of our past NEWS
What was in the local news this weekend in 1894?

 *Christmas at the shops –

The Derbyshire Times wrote “may none lack the necessary coin of the realm to produce some of the luxuries so lavishly provided by those distributors who give their time and thought to get them together”.  A quote that would still stand the test of time to this day, shopping was on the minds of the townspeople way back over 100 years ago. 

But what was on offer for the residents of Chesterfield?  What was the town like back in 1894?
The population was increasing and the town was growing in an expanse out from the town centre.  New buildings had been erected in the town, shops had been built with handsome frontage. Crowds were said to pass through the main areas of business, housewives “seeking the best in the market”. 

Chesterfield was boasting “a finer show of meat could not be found within 50 miles of the old Borough”.  Bullocks, heifers and pigs would have been slaughtered for the resident’s consumption that Christmas.  Mr S E Redfern was said to have a “marvellous display” at his High Street shop, with its star attraction being a shorthorn bullock named “Masterpiece”, which when alive had won prizes at Birmingham and Smithfiled shows.  Mr Dempsey who kept a butcher’s shop on Glumangate was also attracting the crowds to view his many grand bullocks, a lamb and a calf all would have made the mouths of the Chesterfield people water longingly.   Even if they could not afford such luxury, it cost nothing to look.
Apparently, Pork was a firm favourite with the townsfolk and up to Thursday 20th December Mr S Hadfield a butcher on the High Street, had slaughtered around 100 pigs and expected this figure to reach 120 by Christmas.  The pork would be jointed and also made into sausages and pork pies.  Mr George Haag, a noted pork butcher with shops on Beetwell Street and South Street had made 250 stones worth of pork pies alone.

What about the turkeys and game? Chesterfield was privileged to have two fine poultry sellers; Mrs A Warner in the Market Hall and Mr W Bramwell on Burlington Street and Packers Row.  Mrs Warner had for sale; 1,200 turkeys, 800 geese, 1,000 hares, 1,000 braces of pheasants and many other smaller game including fowls and wild ducks.  Mr Bramwell held smaller numbers but still made a grand show with; 600 hares, 400 geese, 500 turkeys, 700 rabbits, 350 braces of pheasant, 150 ducks and a large number of partridges.
For the sweet toothed out there in Chesterfield then there were many confectioners;  including Mrs Green of Corporation Street, Mr F A Bingham of Glumangate and Mr Wardell of Burlington Street.  Jams and marmalade could be purchased from the Midland Fruit Preserving Company.  Mrs Ann Shentall was praised for her striking display of fruit and vegetables decorated with “exquisite flowers” in her shop on Glumangate.  One may even obtain a Florida orange, grown in Chesterfield by Mr Meggitt.

Other than food what else would adorn the shop windows in the hope of luring the shoppers in to spend their shillings? 

Tobacconists could be found in Chesterfield; Briddon’s on Burlington Street had counters and shelves full of cigars, packets of cigarettes and a wide array of pipes.  Mr Green’s window in Holywell Street was especially worthy of mention due to his “delightful profusion, with a blending of colours to make the whole thing striking”.

Christmas was a great time for the wine and spirit merchants of Chesterfield to sell their wares.  One of the main men in this trade was T P Wood & Co, whose premises on Market Place had been decorated by the gardener employed by Hady House a man named Mr Clements.  This must have been a true spectacle of greenery and festive blooms of holy and berries.   Not forgetting Brampton Brewery and Tadcaster Brewery who would “render every facility for persons desirous of obtaining beer or stout in bottles or in small or large cases” the townspeople would like now, consume a large amount of spirits, beers and wines.
Whilst the residents were shopping they would need to be wrapped up warm, Mr J Smith of Burlington Street a hatter and outfitter sold ladies and gents gloves, mufflers, ties, caps and shirts to name but a few of his products.  For those who had a few coins in their purses then gold and silver jewellery could be purchased from Mr Roper, jeweller in Market Place.  Watches, clocks and other fancy goods were all available to make a wonderful Christmas present.
The Derbyshire Times did call out to the residents to think “who made the nick-knacks they purchase?” According to them, most would be “Made in Germany”.  They asked “when will this land maintain its own people first?  Cannot these fancy goods be as easily and well made at home?”

And so our “stroll” around Chesterfield in 1894 for our Christmas shopping is at an end.   What would the residents think of our super store shopping of today?  It seems that all of the businesses of Chesterfield were trying to make money from the Yuletide Season, may be it wasn’t as different as we think from 1894 to 2012.

*Suicide –
Mr Job Moorhouse of Littlemoor, Newbold has died after an attempt to take his own life. On Thursday 20th December he attempted to cut his own throat with a razor in his bedroom.  His wife called for medical assistance.  P C Whittaker heard of the incident and called on the house and stayed the rest of the afternoon. 

Job was confined to his bedroom but his injuries were not life threatening.  Sadly, the man was intent on finishing the job he started and during the afternoon he asked his wife to fetch him something from downstairs.  She obliged and Job quickly locked the bedroom door.  He then made a severe gash to his throat and died afterwards. 

Job was well known in Chesterfield, he had retired a few years earlier after running a provisions merchant shop and running a business as a pig dealer.  He was also a member of the Methodist Church and was a lay preacher.
His later insanity was said to be derived from his liking for drink.  The inquest was held at the Goldsmiths Arms, Newbold and a verdict of “suicide whilst temporarily insane” was reached.

*Child burnt -
On Thursday 20th December a child named Ernest Wright was admitted to the Chesterfield
Hospital, after being burnt whilst playing in front of the fire.
*Assault –
A tailor from Saltergate named Arthur Moore was up in front of the Chesterfield Borough Bench accused of being drunk and disorderly and assaulting Sarah Whitham.

He was found by PC Skidmore in the Shambles, where Arthur’s friends were trying to take him home. 
Sarah Whitham was Arthur’s sister-in-law, he had married her sister.  She stated that Arthur and her sister had lived apart for some time.  Arthur had visited Sarah at her shop and threatened to shoot her, then struck her on her face with his fist. 

Arthur was found guilty and imprisoned in Derby Gaol for 2 months with hard labour.

*Mr George William Wainer of Eastwood to Mary Heald of Selston at the Parish Church Selston on 15th December
*Elizabeth Parsons aged 57 years on 14th December at Newbold

*Gwendoline Clark aged 1 year at Newbold on 18th December

*Lilian May Woofenden aged 20 months on 14th December at Whittington

*Harold Heath aged 16 months on 16th December at Newbold

At Chesterfield Workhouse –
*Anthony Jerrison aged 76 years on 6th December
*John Hughes aged 71 years on 8th December
*Henry Carding aged 26 years on 12th December
*Football –
Chesterfield had a busy week ahead with games to be played at the Avenue Ground on Whittington Moor as follows –
Saturday 22nd December - Chesterfield V Attercliffe
Monday 24th December – Chesterfield V Barnsley
Wednesday 26th December – Chesterfield V Sheepbridge

A special Christmas Day match was to be played by Chesterfield V Sheepbridge Works
Christmas 1894, as described in the Derbyshire Times 22nd December page 5 –
Next Tuesday (Christmas Day) the world over English families – many members of which have long been parted – will gather together.  Under the scorching rays of an Eastern Sun our Indian friends will meet.  In Canada where the ice holds everything in its cold grasp, under the summer, cloudless, sky of Australia and Africa, amid the snow or mist of England’s shores, English men and women will gather round the table.  Gaps there will always be, but it is not a time for vain regrets.  It is a day of joviality and thankfulness – the home-day of the year of that great family of Englishmen – on the world over. 
Some will be there whose Christmas board will be bare, and whose Xmas day will be ushered in amid want and sorrow.  A helping hand and a kindly thought for them will sweeten our own Christmas joys.”

Thursday, 20 December 2012

UPDATE of the Past NEWS 17th December 1864


Catch up on the full story of last weeks NEWS...........

*Christmas Holiday

The drapers and some other shops in Chesterfield were reported to have declared that their shops would be closed on Monday 26th December 1864.  But it appears that Christmas for most of the residents of Chesterfield would have been confined to the one day, the day that they would have been off anyway.

Boxing Day as we know it wasn’t granted an official holiday until 1871 (under the Bank Holidays Act 1871), so the residents of Chesterfield had to wait a few years longer until they would all be entitled to an extra day of celebration at Christmas time.  Even then, although the banks were closed not all of the shops followed suit.  In the December of 1871 most of the shops were closed, with a few exceptions such as the tobacconist, confectioners and toy shops, the day was however undertaken as a general holiday by most.

~ ~ ~ ~ X ~ ~ ~ ~
*James Hogan
James was the little boy who was in trouble for raising the ladies skirts as she walked home from chapel.  He was born in Chesterfield in the summer of 1854, the son of Martin and Mary Hogan, both were from Tipperary, Ireland.  Martin was a mason’s labourer in 1861.  The family had not been in Chesterfield long at this time as James’s elder brother Michael was born in Ireland around 1850 and so the family must have moved here sometime between 1850 and 1854.  There are also 2 other siblings to James in 1861; Daniel aged 4 years and Martin aged 2 years old.  The family lived on Lordsmill Street in the centre of Chesterfield.
Mary, James’s mother died in 1870 and by 1871 Martin, James and Daniel are lodging with Isaac Newbold and his family at 11 St Marys Gate, Chesterfield.  All three Hogan men are still working in the mines as a coal miner, James is now 17 years old.
Ten years on and James has moved away from Chesterfield, he is lodging at Iron Gate, Wath On Dearne, Yorkshire and works as a coal miner.  His father Martin had died in Chesterfield in 1875 aged 83 years old.  James married Jane Ann Carr in Barnsley in 1881 and by 1891 they have four children; Martin aged 7 years, David aged 5 years, Mary aged 2 years and 2 month old Clara.  They are living at New Street, Nether Hoyland along with Jane’s brother, 15 year old William Carr.
In 1901 there are two more children; John aged 6 years and Annie aged 4 years.  The family 3 New Street, Nether Hoyland.   
James died sometime between 1901 and 1911, his wife Jane Ann is a widow and inmate at Barnsley Workhouse in 1911. 
~ ~ ~ ~ X ~ ~ ~ ~


Sunday, 16 December 2012

Echoes of our past ~ NEWS...... 17th December 1864

Read all about it……. Echoes of our past NEWS

What was in the local news this weekend in 1864?


*Christmas day dilemours –

There was great dismay around England as this year Christmas Day was to fall on a Sunday.  As Sunday was already the one and only day off each week for a high proportion of the working class population, it would mean that they would not be gaining an extra day off.

Calls were being made for the people to request that the 26th December be given as a “Christmas Day Holiday”.  The action was being reported all over England and an article from the London Telegraph was repeated in the week’s Derbyshire Times edition for the residents of Chesterfield to peruse.

The London Telegraph article suggested that there could be a benefit from the Christmas Day being a Sunday, in that most workers finished early on a Saturday and so if the day of 26th was also given as a holiday then everyone would have a good long break. 

The Saturday should finish at 12 noon “when the clock shall announce the hour, let the books be rammed into the iron safe, the samples and rolls and pieces taken back to the shelves, the shovel cease to scoop up its guineas, let the holiday begin”.

Sunday, Christmas Day should be taken in a calm and tranquil manner then on Monday “would be an innocent carnival of the people”.  The break would allow all families to reunite and make 1864 a year to remember.

The Derbyshire Times backed up these ideas in an article suggesting “that the Mayor should issue a requisition to the shopkeepers of Chesterfield to abstain from business on the Monday after Christmas, in order to give their assistants their usual holiday at this festive season”.

At least one shop keeper was in agreement with this as he had put his view forward in the “letters” section, stating “I see in some towns they are determined not to be cheated out of their Christmas Holiday, and that they have already announced their determination to keep Monday the 26th as such.  The young men of Chesterfield are not generally behind in canvassing for such favours; but perhaps they are so debilitated by idleness and half work as not to care for a Christmas Holiday”.  He concluded with “I thought Mr Editor, that if an humble individual like myself touched the string the mine might explode and in that case would be agreeable to all and offensive to none”.  Signed A SHOPKEEPER.


*Infanticide at Brimington –

The inquest was held on the body of a baby found in an old pit at Brimington on Sunday 4th December.  The examiner Mr Hugh Eccles Walker MD stated the baby was 6 1/2lbs in weight and in his opinion was a still born child.  The child was wrapped in a washed chemise and placed into a herring box.

An unsuccessful attempt had been made to find the mother of the child.

*Bastardy cases –

Hannah Fisher of Clay cross was claiming George Froggatt also of Clay Cross was the father of her illegitimate child.  The case was adjourned.

Jesse Limb was charged by Mary Ann Longmark and was ordered to pay 2s per week and costs.

John Watts was charged by Mary Bunn, both of Ashover and was charged to pay 2s per week plus costs.

George Whetton was charged with bastardy arrears by Mary Whild.  He was imprisoned for 3 months.

*Indecent assault –

A young 10 year old boy named James Hogan found himself in serious trouble this week. after a prank he allegedly played.  Mrs Mary Mitchell, wife of Adam Mitchell claimed that as she walked alone down Glumangate at about 8pm the “little boy” came up behind her and pulled up her petticoats over her head.  Mary had been to Chapel and was walking home.  Her clothing was flung so far upwards that a man behind her had to actually remove her shawl from her head.

James denied this and said that his clothing had caught on hers as he passed her.  He also told that he worked at Springwell Pit. 

Superintendent Stevens was called to give evidence and told how “these lads were a very great nuisance on a Sunday night”.  They all met up together in gangs of 6 to 12 lads around Knifesmith Gate, Low Pavement and then insulted passersby, especially ladies. 

The Bench decided not to punish James this time and his father was given instructions to take care of his son in future.  The father was happy with this and replied “long life to your honour” to which laughter was heard around the room.


*Mr B Turner junior of Clay Cross to Miss Mary Jane Cormeer also of Clay Cross on 8th December at Alton, Hampshire

*Mr William Langley to Miss Eliza Pickburn at Staveley on 6th December

*Mark Renshaw miner to Sarah Ann Mellors of Tapton on 15th December


*William Hall a tailor of Chesterfield aged 52 years on 10th December

*Ellen Watson of St Marys Gate, Chesterfield on 10th December

*Ann Loads aged 30 years, wife of William of Derby Road on 14th December

*Frances Mark aged 5 months, daughter of William Mark of Brimington on 29th November

*Mr Henry Wilkinson aged 38 years, formerly of Clay Cross died in London on 10th December

*Mary Bausell wife of George, of Clay Cross and late of Pilsley aged 55 years on 19th December

Rain has fallen heavily over the last few days.  This has meant that the wheat plant had benefited and was looking green and healthy.  The rain has been a great help to get the water mills into full working order again and all of the springs which had been dry are now running again, forming ponds and watering holes.


A ten pounds reward was offered for information relating to which “evil disposed person” had sent the rumour around Chesterfield that the wife of a respectable tradesman had stolen a silk dress from the shop of Mr Robert Parker on Low Pavement.

This rumour was totally without evidence and even the shopkeeper, Mr Parker stated “there is no truth in the rumour”.

Any information should be passed to Mr Brockmer accountant of Eyre Street.



Wednesday, 12 December 2012

UPDATE of the Past News 9th December 1882

Catch up on the full story of last weeks NEWS...........

*Bakewell Workhouse -

Christmas Day

The Christmas day treat was well loved by all of the inmates of Bakewell Union Workhouse.  A thank you was passed on to the Board of Guardians at the fortnightly meeting at the beginning of January.  Mr and Mrs Waters the master and his wife were especially praised for their great interest in ensuring that those in their charge were comfortable.  The inmates were waited on by a Mrs Balston and her sister and the sister of Mrs Waters also helped in the days activities.  The meat was carved by the clerk Mr Fidler.  The inmates were given entertainment in the evening.  The only Guardian to attend was Mr Thornhill. 

Edwin Waters, the Master -

The Workhouse master was Mr Edwin Waters not Walters as stated in last week’s news.  It appears that his application to become master of a workhouse in London did not prove successful as he and his wife were still working at Bakewell for some months afterwards.  Edwin had not been at Bakewell Workhouse long as his predecessor Mr Edward Cunningham had passed away after a long illness on 18th July 1881.  Mr Cunningham was said to have been very popular with the inmates even though he was strict with his discipline.  In contrast to those whom he reigned over, Mr Cunningham had quite a large amount of money, his probate records the sum of £1,717 6s. 

Back to Edwin Waters, he was born in Dover in 1842, the son of William and Mary Waters.  Edwin was a Staff Sergeant of the 2nd Battalion Scots Fusilier Guards in 1871 residing at Chelsea Barracks.  His was married to Elizabeth Gray whom he had married on 3rd December 1870 at Trinity Church, Upper Chelsea.  Sadly Elizabeth died a few years later in 1873.

Edwin enlisted on 2nd February 1861, aged 18 years old.  His birthplace was St James, Dover and he was a sailor, 5ft 7 ½ inches high.  Edwin rose through the ranks being promoted to; Corporal on 9th November 1864, Sergeant 7th November 1868, Hospital Steward 21st February 1872 and finally Colour Sergeant 1st July 1881.  He was discharged on 28th February 1882, his place of intended residence was Bakewell which as we know he was already employed as Bakewell Workhouse Master at this time.  Edwin’s military background and the excellent reference “that of a very good and efficient non-commissioned officer, zealous in the performance of all his duties, trustworthy and sober” would have been just what the Guardians of Bakewell Union were looking for in a master at Bakewell Union Workhouse.

 By the time Edwin arrived at Bakewell he had remarried; in 1874 Edwin married Eleanor Hillyard at St George Hanover Square, London.  Edwin already had a son named Ernest Edwin born in 1872 at St George Hanover Square, London the son of Elizabeth.  At the time of Elizabeth’s death in 1873 there is also a birth and death registered of a female unnamed Waters child, indicating that Elizabeth may well have died from complications in childbirth.  Edwin would have been left a single parent to care for 1 year old Ernest. 

 At the beginning of June 1883 Edwin Waters wrote a letter to the Board of Guardians explaining that he had been offered the position of Master at the Fir Vale Workhouse in Sheffield.  He and his wife would work one months notice.   They are praised in an article in February 1884 for their work at Fir Vale Workhouse.  The workhouse was said to be spread over a large area, which was as large as the whole of Bakewell Village.  The Christmas dinner of 1883 was taken by 1,800 inmates, apparently “demolished a trifle over a ton of Christmas pudding”. 

By 1901 and aged 58 years old, Edwin and his wife Eleanor have retired from the workhouse life and are living at 133 Melfort Road, Croyden.  They have one servant girl named Elizabeth Hill.  Things were soon to change again for Edwin when in 1902 his wife of 28 years passed away, she was 57 years old. 

Edwin passed away on 9th December 1909 at Devonshire.  His probate record states that he resided at Denewood, Pressland Road, Sidmouth.  He was a retired poor law officer and left £283 12s 6d.  Edwin had not been sat alone however since the death of his wife Eleanor in 1902, as the money was bequeathed to an Elizabeth Jane Waters, widow.  Edwin married Elizabeth Jane Hill in 1906 at Totnes, Devon. 

Ernest Edwin the son of Edwin and Elizabeth Gray became a Captain in the Indian Medical Service.  He married a girl who was born in Madras India named Isabel.  In 1901 the couple are visiting a Surgeon named Mr Powel at Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire.  He died on 30th September 1938 and left his estate of £38614 19s 7d to his widow Isabel. 

Workhouse Scandal -

The incident regarding Fanny Goodwin was first reported at the end of October, when the appearance of “a very diminutive little individual – a baby” was the topic on all of Bakewell after the mother “stoutly declines to disclose the paternity”. 

Fanny Goodwin was mid 30’s and already had a son named Henry.  She was an inmate at Bakewell Workhouse in 1881 when the census was taken.    The baby born in 1882 was named Florence.  Fanny is described on the census as unmarried and a general servant. 

In 1887 Fanny is again causing scandal in the workhouse as another child was born to her with unknown paternity in the April of 1887.  Once again she was refusing to tell the Guardians who the father was, she was described as “astute lady remains as silent as ever respecting the parentage of her rather numerous progeny”.  She did give one answer “it’s an inmate who’s gone out and I want to go to”.   Fanny had been separated and constantly watched after her last incident of childbirth, she should not have been anywhere near the men.  But, on one occasion it was said that the man in question and Fanny were in the hospital as patients at the same time. 

The Guardians were discussing her at nearly all of their meetings; it seems she now had 4 children in the workhouse with her ranging up to 13 years old.  Only one had the father’s name known.  She was notoriously known as “silent Fanny”.  She did make the Guardians happy in January 1883 during the inquest into the father of Florence; she stated “her past conduct was not in the least connected with any of the paid officers of the Union”.  This was a great relief to the Guardians.

A few years on in 1891 and sadly life has not got much better for Fanny, she is still an inmate at the Bakewell Workhouse and there are two children listed with her Henry aged 13 years and Florence aged 9 years. 

Further still in 1901 and there is still a Fanny Goodwin living at Bakewell Workhouse, the age is slightly different but this is most probably the same Fanny who had such a notorious life within the Union Workhouse walls for around 20 years.  The Fanny that had caused all the scandal and had stuck staunchly to her principles and refused to name the father of baby Florence or her siblings – who was the father?, we may never know, Fanny would probably not want us to know either.

There is a death for a Fanny Goodwin in Bakewell aged 60 years old in 1910; this may well be “our” Fanny Goodwin.
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*Attempted suicide

Mrs Thompson who attempted suicide by cutting her own throat was reported to be out of danger and doing well.


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