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Two John Bassetts - Almost a case of mistaken identity

On John Bassett?s death certificate (died in Eaglehawk, Victoria, Australia) in 1868 his age was 80 and his parents were William Bassett and Mary Unknown. Therefore we deducted that he must have been born in circa 1788.
Research turned up a John Bassett christened 27 March 1788, St Izzey, Cornwall his parents were William Bassett and Mary Symons. At this point we felt very excited that we had found our John. However, after further research a descendant was found in Roma, Queensland, Australia who refuted our claim of kinship ? in the nicest way possible.
The following information was forwarded for us to digest:-
John Bassett [son of William Bassett (1761-1831) & Mary Symons (1767-1832)] Christened 27 Mar 1788 in St Izzy, Cornwall who died 7th Oct 1851 in Fairwater House, Taunton Somerset.John was a lunatic confined to Fairwater House Lunatic Asylum for many years admitted July 1828 having previously been a patient at a similar establishment near Tauton, Fivehead House since 25 Oct 1822.This was a wholesale move and transfer of license from the one to the other asylum by the same surgeon/owner. Private patient. Cause of death peritonitis and effusion in the chest (Somerset RO 1/5/87).
This therefore couldn't be the John Bassett who married Martha Carbis as he died in England in 1851 whereas our John died in Eaglehawk, Victoria, Australia in 1868

So it was back to the drawing board, until a second promising John Bassett was unearthed, who was also born in Madron

John Bassett christened 5 September 1790, Madron, Cornwall Unfortunately only one parent is given, the father, in the Madron Parish records see below
"5 Sep 1790 John s/o William Bassett, pauper at Madron"
On John Bassett's death certificate1 in 1868 his father is listed as William, a farmer, and his mother is listed as Mary unknown, a farmers wife.
Another conundrum perhaps John's parents had in the past been farmer but had become paupers just before John was born?
It would seem highly likely that the descendants in Australia had no clear memory of who John's parents were, or what their occupations were. Australia is a long way away and death certificates are not the most reliable source of information.
So until someone comes along to prove something different I've decided to lay claim to this John, at least for the momment.

Two Mary Ebbotts help need to disentangle them

3 comment(s), latest 5 years, 9 months ago

Two Walter Todman born 1866 in the English Census

Walter Todman
Born - Mar Q 1866 Greenwich 1d 711
Christened - Entry 880 - Walter 11 March 1866, 8 years Child of Henry & Emma Todman, Addlestone, Father Labourer Source Surrey, England, Baptisms, 1813-1912 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013. Original data: Anglican Parish Registers. Woking, Surrey, England: Surrey History Centre. Baptisms in the Parish of Addlestone, in the County of Surrey in 1874 page 112

Census Appearances 1871, 1881 & 1891

1871 Census
Wotton Road, St Paul Deptford, Greenwich, London, England
1. Henry Tadman 33 Head, Baker b. Chertsey, Surrey
2. Emma Tadman 28 Wife b. Chertsey, Surrey
3. Arther Tadman 7 Son b. Norwood, Surrey
4. Walter Tadman 5 Son b. Deptford, Kent
Source 1871 RG10; Piece: 744; Folio: 162; Page: 15

1881 Census
Spratts, Chertsey, Surrey, England
1. Emma Todman, head, 39, widow, Chertsey, Surrey, England
2. Arthur Todman, 17, Carter, son, Norwood, Surrey, England
3. Walter Todman, 15, Carters Boy, Deptford, Kent, England
4. Emily Todman, 7, scholar, Chertsey, Surrey, England
5. Nellie Todman, 2, Chertsey, Surrey, England
6. Lucy Cardash, 2, Foundling
7. Alfred Jennins, 1, Foundling
Source: Class: RG11; Piece: 768; Folio: 60; Page: 18 (Note the first letter of Todman looks like J so the surname is often indexed as Jodman)

1891 Census
Mixnams, The Ferry, Chertsey, Surrey, England
1. Walter Todman, Head, Married, Male, 25, Agricultural Labourer, Deptford, Kent, England
2. Sarah Todman, Wife, Married, Female, 26, Chertsey, Surrey, England
3. Alice Todman, Daughter, Female, 8, Scholar, Chertsey, Surrey, England
4. Walter H Todman, Son, Male, 0, Chertsey, Surrey, England
5. Elizabeth Hunter, Sister In Law, Single, Female, 20, Chertsey, Surrey, England
Source: 1891 Census RG12, Piece #552, Folio 37, Page 4

Further details on family source

Further information for Parents:- Death of Father registered in Mar Q 1879 as Henry Todman, aged 42, District Chertsey, Vol 2a, page 34; Parents marriage registered Dec Q 1862 Henry Todman to Emma Gray District Chertsey, Vol 2a, page 45

Walter Todman aged 23, father Henry Todman, & Sarah Vinvine aged 23, father George Vinvine on 30 November 1890
Source : Surrey, England, Marriages, 1754-1937 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013. Original data: Anglican Parish Registers. Woking, Surrey, England: Surrey History Centre.Page 52 (digital image 27), Christ Church Ottershaw, Reference # OTT/1/3

Further information:-
All baptised on the same day 17th May 1874, as Walter:-
1. Entry 878 - Emily Child of Henry & Emma Todman, Addlestone, Father Labourer
2. Entry 879 - Arthur born 11 Feb 1864 10 years Child of Henry & Emma Todman, Addlestone, Father Labourer
Source Surrey, England, Baptisms, 1813-1912 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013. Original data: Anglican Parish Registers. Woking, Surrey, England: Surrey History Centre. Baptisms in the Parish of Addlestone, in the County of Surrey in 1874 page 112

Walter Todman

Born - Sep Q 1865 Hambledon 2a 109

Christened: Entry number 264, Walter Todman, son of William, Labourer, and Emily Todman living in ?Tattenbury, in the Parish of Milford, St John the Evangelist
Source: Surrey, England, Baptisms, 1813-1912 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013. Original data: Anglican Parish Registers. Woking, Surrey, England: Surrey History Centre. St John the Evangelist, 1852 Jan-1875 Feb, Page 33, Digital Image 22 of 38 accessed 30 October 2015

Census Appearances 1871 & 1881
1871 Census in Scotland Lane, Milford
1. William Todman 44 Head, Domestic Servant, Groom b. Hastings, Sussex
2. Emily Todman 40 Wife b. Petersfield, Hampshire
3. William Todman 14 Son, Assistant Groom b. Milford, Surrey
4. Archibald Todman 12 Son b. Milford, Surrey
5. Albert Todman 10 Son b. Chapel En Le Frith, Derbyshire
6. Martha Todman 7 Daur b. Chapel En Le Frith, Derbyshire
7. Walter Todman 5 Son b. Milford, Surrey
8. Frank Todman 3 Son b. Milford, Surrey
9. Harry Todman 1 Son b. Milford, Surrey
10.Kate E Todman 2 months Daur
Source 1871 RG10; Piece: 823; Folio: 32; Page: 2

1881 Census
Witley Street, Witley, Surrey (Note, Witley is only 2 miles away from Mitford)
1. Emily Todman 50 Wife (Husband not present though) b. Petersfield, Hants
2. Adelene Todman 28 Daur, Dressmaker b. Petersfield, Hants. Deaf + Dumb
3. Martha Todman 19 Daur b. Chapel En Le Frith, Derbys
4. Walter Todman 15 Son General Lab b. Witley, Surrey
5. Frank Todman 13 Son General Lab, b. Witley Surrey
6. Henry Todman 11 Son b. Witley, Surrey
7. Kate E. Todman 10 Daur b. Witley, Surrey
8. Sidney Todman 6 Son b. Witley, Surrey
9. Alfred Todman 4 Son, b. Witley, Surrey
Source: 1881 Class: RG11; Piece: 790; Folio: 60; Page: 9

1891 Census
Hornty Road, Hastings, Sussex, England
1. William Todman, Head, Married, Male, 62, Gardener, Hastings, Sussex, England
2. Emily Todman, Wife, Married, Female, 60, Petersfield, Hampshire, England
3. Adela J Todman, Daughter, Single, Female, 38, Dress Maker, Petersfield, Hampshire, England
4. George A Todman, Son, Married, Male, 36, Butler Domestic Servant, Petersfield, Hampshire, England
5. Kate E Todman, Daughter, Single, Female, 21, Book Keeper, Surrey, England
6. Sidney Todman, Son, Single, Male, 16, Tailor, Surrey, England
7. Alfred Todman, Son, Single, Male, 14, Scholar, Surrey, England
8. Charles Wiliams, Visitor, Married, Male, 76, Living On Her Own Means, Stockton, Durham, England
9. Martha E Millichamp, Visitor, Widow, Female, 50, Living On Her Own Means, Birmingham, Warwickshire, England
Source 1891 Census RG12, Piece 764, Folio 67, page 25

Further information:-
Walter Todman has left home or died, unable to locate him in the 1891 Census. He could possibly be the Walter TODMAN, born 1866 who died 1887 in the British nationals armed forces deaths 1796-2005 in Sealkote India aged 21 source FindMyPast (UK) GRO Army Death Indices (1881 to 1955), page 223, record set British nationals armed forces deaths 1796-2005 accessed 30/10/2015

Walter Todman

Walter Todman is my great grandfather. He lived most of life in Victoria, Australia. It appears he was possibly born in Essex, England and migrated to Australia sometime before 1891 when he married Martha Sarah Ellis in the All Saints Church, East St Kilda, Victoria, Australia. He died suddenly of acute heart failure in 1929 at around 63. Who Walter's parents were is not clear

Before his marriage where and who Walter is almost a complete mystery.

However in my quest to find my grandfather I have found two possible Walter Todmans who could in fact be the same person.

In 1890 a Walter Todman registered a patent in NSW for shearing equipment. In 1892 a Walter Todman is getting married to a Martha Sarah Ellis in Victoria.
The question then becomes are these two Walters the same person?
I have been unable to find either of them coming into Australia nor what happened to the Walter Todman who started off in NSW.

My research so far has focused on the following
Establishing where my great grandfather Walter Todman was born through his childrens birth certificates:-
1894 on his daughter's Martha's birth certificate he was born in Essex, England
1895 on his daughter's Ivy Florence birth certificate he was born in Stepheney, London
1897 on his son's Walter Victor birth certificate he was born in Surrey, England
1903 on his daughter's Hazel May's birth certificate he was born in Essex, England
1906 on his son's Lincoln James birth certificate he was born in Essex, England
1908 on his daughter's Charlotte Mary birth certificate he was born in Norfolk, England
1910 on his daughter's Alma Dudley birth certificate he was born in Norfolk, England

On all birth certificates the informant was Martha Todman, mother (& Walter's wife); although the place listed for the fathers (Walter's) birth is always different his age is always consistent with being born in 1866.

A second Walter Todman?
There is a Walter Todman who fathered a Walter Todman in 1890 in New South Wales Australia with a Jane Levey. This Walter Todman was born in Norfolk, England who was 25 years old at the time therefore being born c 1865. A possible match for my Walter. (note Walter and Jane were not married)

The address listed was 9 Bailey Street, Newtown

Pros as to why this might be the same person as my Walter Todman
* the potential birth date of both Walter's is almost the same
* Norfolk is listed as one of the possible birth places of our Walter and is listed as the birth place of this second Walter Todman
* He is also a blacksmith
[We have been unable to find the marriage or death of a Jane Levey or her son Walter Todman in N.S.W or Vic; perhaps Jane did marry or take some elses name and changed her son's name to that surname also?]

[Efforts to try and establish whether these two Walter Todman's are the same person
I have tried to locate the Walter Todman in NSW after/before 1892 particularly at 9 Bailey Street, Newtown. By following his movements I was hoping that we would be able to distinguish between the two Walter's if they weren't the same person
Records that we consulted while in NSW were:-
1. 1891 NSW Census - taken on 16th April 1891. 9 Bailey Street Newtown was uninhabited. This could indicate a number of things, that after Walter Todman son of Jane Levey and Walter Todman was born the couple moved from the house either together or separately.
2. Sydney Sands Postal Directory - 1888 - 1890 did not list a Walter Todman at any location. In 1890 the person living at 9 Bailey Street, Newtown was Miss Mary A Currey. This could mean that Miss Currey lived by herself or was incharge of a boarding house or ??. If the dwelling was a boarding house or similar Walter and/or Jane could have lived there as well. There were Todmans listed in the Directory including a George F Todman and in 1890 a Herman Todman, neither of these were living near Newtown.
3. In the Sands Directories: Sydney and New South Wales, Australia 1891 there was a Walter Todman listed at 9 Bailey Street, Newtown, New South Wales, Australia
3. Electoral Role 1889 - 1890 no Walter Todman listed. In 1889 a George Todman was listed (not mine as far as I can establish)]

A Jane Todman shows up on Sand and Macdougall directory in Coburg, Victoria in 1907 only. This may only be a coincidence - but if this was infact Jane Levy, her son Walter would have been about to turn 18 perhaps she had appeared to collect his share of his inheritance or something.

*why would you call a second son by the same name? i.e. Walter Victor Todman by the same name as your first son?

With a bit of luck someone can give me a clue on where I should head next or perhaps even have further information to help shed light on the mystery.


Who are David BOGIES'S parents - Dysart, Fife, Scotland

3 comment(s), latest 8 years, 9 months ago