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John Avis & Alice Backwell of Devon, England. 1815 - 1901

John Marshall Avis & Alice Backwell

John Marshall AVIS of Kingswear, Devon, married Alice BACKWELL, not of Kingswear, on 28th December 1836 in the Parish of Kingswear, Devon. Both signed their names.
Witnesses were Richard Backwell and Sarah Backwell. (Possibly brother and sister of Alice.)

Alice?s parents were Richard Backwell & Mary, according to her christening record found on LDS. Alice born 12th July 1814 at Dartmouth, Devon. Christened a few years later in Saint Petrox, Dartmouth, Devon on 26th November 1823 at age nine. Sarah, Alice?s sister, born 27th April 1811, was also christened on that date and in that place. They could have had a sister, Mary born about 1801, and a brother, Richard born 1799.

The 1841 census of Devon shows John and Alice living at St Mary Church, Torquay, Devon. John was 26 years old and Alice was 25. They were living with their two children, George, age 2 years and an unnamed daughter, 1 week old. This would have been Emma.
John was a JOINER. A Joiner/Joyner is a skilled carpenter capable of finer work than a plain carpenter eg. Making joints for furniture.

Neither John, nor Alice, can be found in the 1851 census.
Emma and Eliza, their daughters, are boarding with Mathew Easterley & family at St Mary Church, Torquay.

Emma Avis born May 30th 1841 at St Mary Church, Newton Abbot, Devon.
Eliza?s birth (sister of Emma)birth registered Newton Abbot, Devon,
Sept qu 1843.

In the 1861 census Alice is shown to be a widow. John passed away between 1841 and 1861.

Emma Avis married Frank John Milne in 1862.

In 1871 census Alice is living in Wales. At Llanvedw, Monmouthshire, Wales. She is the Housekeeper of a mansion belonging to Charles K. Kemeys Tynte.

Eliza Avis married Thomas Husband in 1876.

1881 census finds Alice living in 27 High Street, Towcester, Northhampton with her daughter, Eliza, and Eliza?s husband, Thomas HUSBAND. Thomas born abt 1847 at Aston, Shropshire, (census transcript has this down as ?Sheeps Aston?). He is a butler and house steward. Eliza stated as being born at Babbicombe, Devon.
They have children: Reginald HUSBAND age 3, born at Ford, Devon, and Edward HUSBAND age 2 born Yealmpton, Devon.

Eliza Husband nee AVIS dies 9th February 1886 at Towcester, Northhampton. Age 38 she dies of a carcinoma. Thomas was present at her death and was the informant on the death register. She is buried and registered as ?LISLE HUSBAND?.

1891 census finds Alice Avis alone with her 3 three grandsons. Thomas Husband must have been away working. He was alive in 1900 and living at Towcester when Alice died.
The census record shows Alice to be a widow, age 76, born Dartmouth, Devon, living by her own means at Woodbine Cottage number 3, Towcester, Northhampton.
Her grandsons are:
Ernest R. Husband, age 13, a scholar, born Ford, Devon.
Edward V. Husband, age 11, a scholar, born Yealmpton, Devon.
Albert T. Husband, age 9, a scholar, born Towcester, Northhampton.

Avis, Alice; Description: "Widow." Died on April 26th 1900 aged 86 years. Buried on April 30th 1900 in plot A-73. The body came from Towcester.
Source:- Ref. 1, Page 95, Number 759. Death reg. Number: vol 3. page 8.
Alice died of senile decay and bronchial catarrh. Thomas, her son in law, was present at the time of her death and the informant for the registrar. Thomas was living at Lodge Farm, Laughan (?) at the time.

Kingswear history mentions Avis?s in historical records and in the census.

The oldest Avis people found in the census for Kingswear were:

William born about 1771
Sarah born about 1771
Sally born about 1774 (she could have been Sarah)
Elizabeth born about1788
Thomas born about 1814
Robert born about 1816

I am inclined to think that Thomas (1814) and Robert (1816) were brothers to John.

Various Census show Kingswear AVIS families as (birth years are approximates):-

William (1771), a shipwright. Possibly died about 1846.
Sarah (1771), his wife.
Living at Higher Street, Kingswear in 1841.

William (1841), Grandson, Ship?s Carpenter, born Kingswear. (Could have been
the son of Robert & Elizabeth).
Living with:
John Thomas (1786), Marina pensioner, born Bristol, Somerset.
Mary (1792), wife, born St Mary Church.
William Clackstone (1837), Ship?s Carpenter, born Kingswear.
This family were living at the ?Square?, Kingswear, in 1861.

Sally AVIS (1774), Shipwright?s Widow, born Kingswear. (Could have been Sarah, wife of
William). She was living at Trust House, Kingswear in 1851.

Robert (1816), Shipwright, born Kingswear.
Elizabeth (1817), wife, born Kingswear.
Mary Elizabeth (1843), Dressmaker, born Gillingham, Kent.
All following children born Gillingham as well.
Sarah M (1846)
Harriett (1848)
Ellen (1853)
Robert (1855)
The family moved to Kent and appeared to remain there.

Thomas (1814), Chair Maker, Postman, Boat Builder,born Kingswear.
Elizabeth 1812), wife, born Dartmouth.
Ellen (1840), possibly registered 1838.
Thomas (1842)
Fanny (1844), Draper?s assistant, born Kingswear.
Mary W. (1849)
Bessie (1851), Teacher of Music, born Kingswear.
Living at Alma House, Kingswear in 1871.

Thomas (1841), Marine Engineer, born Kingswear.
Henrietta (1839), wife, born Bradninch, Devon.
Ida E, (1869), daughter, born Kingswear.
Living at 2 Harbour View, Kingswear in 1871.

Also of Interest:-
A child named John Marshall Avis was born in 1846 to Thomas, a chair maker, of Kingswear. This child died in 1847 of Bronchitis.
This makes me think that the naming of the child ?John Marshall? was in honour of John Marshall AVIS, born about 1815, who married Alice Backwell.

In 1850 the directories show Thomas Avis to be a chair maker, and in 1856 through 1866 boat builder and postmaster.
The first post office, with Thomas Avis, was on the corner of the sea wall at the south-west of the ferry slip, in Longford.

The following extract is from

From October 1865 the Kingswear Ferry was leased to Messrs. Avis & Son of Kingswear,
the local postmaster. Three boats were worked by Avis, two pulling boats for passengers and a third as a luggage boat, or horse boat which was supplied by the Dartmouth and Torbay Railway.

This ferry was converted to steam operation in 1869 when Tom Avis? new steam launch Pioneer came into service. This boat was built by J Samuel White at Cowes. Unfortunately, when on passage to Dartmouth the boat struck a rock at the entrance to Weymouth Harbour and had to be beached for repairs.

In October 1877 the lease was transferred to G.A and J.W Casey Brothers.

The River Dart opens into the English Channel. This leads directly across to France and to the Channel Islands Alderney, Jersey, Guernsey and Sark. Emma AVIS, daughter of John AVIS and Alice BACKWELL married Frank Milne, whose parents lived in Jersey for many years.

2 comment(s), latest 6 years ago

Charles Pitman & Martha Paul of Somerset, England

CHARLES PITMAN was son of William Pitman and Mary nee Raison of South Petherton.
Charles Pitman born abt 1799 and christened in 1800 at South Petherton. He married Martha Paul, daughter of William Paul and his wife, Elizabeth. Martha born abt 1799 at possibly Martock. She was christened at Martock on 7th January 1799. William Paul was later the South Petherton Constable. Both William and Eizabeth Paul were deceased before 1853, according to Martha?s immigration records when she and Charles sailed to Australia in 1853.
Charles was a carpenter by trade.
The following transcriptions of SS Peter and Paul parish records show:
Born to Charles Pitman and Martha:-
Leah Baptised 3rd November 1824 at South Petherton.
Migrated to Australia. Married Joseph Hull in Parramatta, NSW, Australia in 1856.
Eliza Baptised 29 August 1827 at South Petherton. Born about March 1826.
Married Henry Griffen at South Petherton on 21st August 1848, and migrated to Australia.
William Baptised 29 August 1827 at South Petherton. Born 5th August 1827.
Migrated to Australia. May have married Cathrine Calder in Sydney, Australia in 1854.
Ann Baptised 25 November 1830 at South Petherton. Born 29th August 1830.
& possibly Ebenezer born about 1825. (Ebenezer was in 1841 census records. Have not found him again).
& possibly Charles who born April 8th 1840,and christened April 16th
1840 and died South Petherton on 22nd April 1840 age 10 days. Transcripts say he was born to Charles and Leah Pitman. This possibly should have been Martha.

1841 census sees Charles and Martha Pitman living at Whitehall Street, Yeovil, Somerset. Very near the town of South Petherton. They are with their daughter, Ann, age 9 years. Charles is a carpenter.
1850 Directory of South Petherton and Martock shows Charles Pitman as a carpenter.
1851 census sees Charles and Martha Pitman living in South Petherton with Leah and Ann, their daughters. And Benjamin Pitman, age 5, Charles grandson. We later find he was born to Leah.
Charles Pitman and his wife, Martha left England for Australia in 1853. Their son, William, and daughter, Eliza were already in Australia. Charles and Martha took Leah with them, and Leah?s son, Benjamin.

Charles and Martha, with daughter, Leah, and grandson, Benjamin, sailed on the ship "Talavera" from Southampton, England on 1st June 1853 to New South Wales, Australia. Arrived 25th August 1853.
Film number 2465

Ship?s records contain the following information:

Charles Pitman age 50 Born South Petherton, Somerset.
Parents: William & Mary, both deceased. Church of England.
Occupation: Carpenter. Can read & write. In good health.

Martha Pitman age 50 Born Martock, Somerset.
Parents: William & Elizabeth, both deceased. Church of England.
Wife of Charles. Can read & write. In good health.

Leah Pitman age 27 Born South Petherton, Somerset.
Parents: Charles & Martha, both on board ship. Church of England.
Occupation: Domestic Servant. Can read & write. In good health.

Benjamin Pitman age 7 Born South Petherton, Somerset.
Parents: on board ship. Church of England.

Notes on the family:
Have a son, William, & daughter, Eliza, both living at Woolomooloo, NSW. Son, William Pitman paid 34 pounds for travel cost under the ??? regulations.

As inspected by Immigration Board September 1853.

The ship was released from quarantine following inspection on 6th September 1853.

Charles died about 1876 in Dubbo, NSW, Australia.

Mary Baker & Joseph Keirle of Somerset and Illinois, USA

MARY BAKER was the daughter of Joseph Baker and Betsey nee Pitman, and granddaughter of William Pitman and Mary nee raison of South Petherton, Somerset, England.
Mary was christened on July 8th 1832 at South Petherton. She married Job Keirle in 1852 at St Marylebone, Middlesex, England. Job was born March 20th 1827 in Othery, Somerset.
Mary and Job left for America in about 1881 with most of their family, and stayed there.

Mary died in Illinois, USA, after 1891. Job died July 1895 in Bunker Hill, Macoupin County, Illinois.

They had the following children:
Gilbert born 3rd June 1853 in Bridgwater, Somerset. Married Emma Reader , born October 3rd 1848 in Dorset, England. Died February 3rd 1924 of heart failure at a St Louis hospital.
Annie born 1859 at Bridgwater, Somerset
Florence born December 1859 in Somerset. Married William Graham in 1883 in Bristol, Gloucestershire.
Bertha Ada born December 28th 1861 in Somerset
Henry born 1867
William born 1869 in Bristol, Gloucestershire, England
Rose Kate born February 4th 1872 at Bristol, Gloucestershire. Married Stephen R. Ridgley June 30th 1897 in Bunker Hill, Macoupin County, Illinois. Rose died March 19th 1948.
Lilly Susan born 1873 at Bristol


1861 census shows Job and Mary Keirle nee Baker living at Axbridge, Somerset.
They have their children Gilbert, age 7, Mary E, age 5, Floritt E, age 3, and Floritt age 1, with them.
They also have Mary?s sister, Susan Baker living with them.

1881 English census shows Mary and Job as living at 69 Lower Ashley Road, St James & Paul, Bristol.
Job ? occupation general haulier.
Mary - wife
And daughters
Florence age 21, a tailoress born Axbridge.
Bertha age 19, a tassel maker born Axbridge.
Annie age 17, a dressmaker born Bristol, Gloucestershire.
Rosa age 9, born Bristol (actually registered as Rose Kate Keirle)
Lilly age 7, born Bristol
And sons
Henry age 14, an errand boy born Bristol
William age 12, born Bristol

A Biographical sketch shows Gilbert Keirle, son of Job and Mary, lived at Bunker Hill, Illinois. He left for America age 18, long before his parents arrived there. The sketch can be found on www.rootsweb.ancestry.com or type in ?Gilbert Keirle? in google search. This also shows a site where you can find his death certificate.

2 comment(s), latest 12 years, 8 months ago

William Pitman Baker & Mary Ann Salley. Somerset,England & Victoria, Australia

WILLIAM PITMAN BAKER was the Grandson of William Pitman & Mary nee Raison, and son of Joseph Baker and Betsey nee Pitman.

William Pitman Baker was born South Petherton, Somerset, England & christened 16 July 1837, South Petherton. He died April 3rd 1910 in Grey street, Geelong, Victoria, Australia. Death reg. no. 5393. Buried: Eastern cemetery, Geelong.

In the English census of 1851 a William Baker, age 18 years, born South Petherton about 1833, was a servant at Chard civil parish, Somerset. This is possibly William Pitman Baker. He was possibly working for the Clarke family.
William married Mary Ann Salley on July 13th 1854 in Whitechapel, London, England. On the marriage certificate Mary Ann is down as Ann Sally.
The marriage certificate stated William was a Gentleman's servant. Both parties stated their residence as being 115 lemon street, Whitechapel, Middlesex, England. He was a bachelor, she was a spinster. Both were of full age, presumably 21 years.
On the certificate Ann?s father is Samuel Sally.

Mary Ann was born about 1831 in Bridgwater, Somerset. She died July 1st 1905 in Geelong, Victoria.
She was buried: July 1st 1905 Geelong Eastern Cemetery, Geelong, Victoria.

William and MaryAnn migrated to Australia and arrived in Victoria between the end of 1854 and 1855. They possibly paid their own way over and were not assisted. William built one of the first houses in Geelong, which was still, in 1998, a heritage home protected under the trust.
William's death certificate states he died of Hemiplegia that he had for 12 months and Diarrhoea and exhaustion that he had for 4 weeks. All his children survived him.

Children of William Pitman Baker & Mary Ann Salley:-

Walter Baker Born 1855 in Geelong, Victoria. Died 1914 in East Melbourne, Victoria.
Married Mary Ann Knight 1873 in Geelong, Victoria, Australia
Oliver Baker Born 1857 in Geelong, Victoria. Died 1928 in Geelong, Victoria.
Married Annie Gibson in 1882 in Geelong, Victoria, Australia
Annie born about 1858 and died 1885 in Geelong
Gilbert Baker Born November 29, 1859 in Barrabool Hills, Geelong, Victoria.
Birth registration: 19838. Died 1936 in Geelong, Victoria. Death reg. no. 17538
Married Ophilia Bennett in 1880 in Victoria, Australia. Ophelia was born 1855 in West Derby, Lancashire, England and died 1929 in Geelong, Victoria. Death reg. no. 15750.
Father: Edward Henry Bennett. Mother: Mary Ann Wilcox
Amelia Augusta Baker Born 1862 Newtown, Geelong, Victoria.
Married William Barnet in 1886 in Victoria.
Laura Baker Born 1864 in Newtown, Geelong, Victoria.
Died 1923 in Geelong, Victoria.
MaryAnn Baker Born about 1866 in Geelong, Victoria, Australia. Died 1953 in South Melbourne, Victoria.
Married Frederick George Westaway on May 15th 1891 in Geelong, Victoria, Australia. Fredrick was born 1866 in Ashby, Victoria, Australia and died 1938 in Camberwell, Victoria.

1 comment(s), latest 4 years ago

Elizabeth Baker daughter of Joseph & Betsey of South Petherton, Somerset, England.

ELIZABETH BAKER was the Grandaughter of William Pitman and Mary Raison of South Petherton, Somerset, England, and daughter of Joseph Baker and Betsey nee Pitman of South Petherton.

Elizabeth was registered Yeovil in the March quarter of 1841. Vol. 10. Elizabeth was 5 months old in the 1841 census which was taken in the night of 6th June 1841 which would mean Elizabeth was born about January, which ties in with the birth registration. I have no idea why Elizabeth has Carpenter as a middle name.

Elizabeth spent most of her childhood in Somerset. She and her mother then moved to Southwark, Surrey, England. Possibly for financial reasons.

Elizabeth Baker lived with her mother, Betsey Baker at 1 Pond Yard, Southwark, Surrey, in 1861 (shown in census). Betsey, age 50, was a nurse born at South Petherton, and Elizabeth, age 20, was a sewing machine hand, born at South Petherton.

Henry Baker son of Joseph & Betsey of South Petherton, England and Illinois, USA

Henry Baker born South Petherton 25th May 1838 to Joseph Baker and Betsey nee Pitman. Grandson of William Pitman and Mary nee Raison.

Henry remained in England with his family until he was about 21 years old. He then migrated to America.

Thanks to a biographical sketch found on the internet, I was able to find information on Henry Baker in America.

Henry Baker arrived in New York, America on 11 June 1855 at the age of 21 years. He left London on the ship ?G B Lamar?.

He remained in Illinois until his death in 1914. Henry died Macoupin County, Illinois in February 1914.

He married Emma Lockyer nee Barnstable. They lived in Macoupin County, Illinois.
Emma Barnstable was born about 1826 in Middlezoy, Somerset, England, and died January 1883 in Illinois, USA. She had previously been married to Richard Lockyer on 24th April 1844 in Middlezoy, Somerset, England. He was born 1820.
Emma?s daughter from her marriage to Richard, Mary, married William Heal in USA after 1872.

Henry Baker married Emma Lockyer nee Barnstable on 17th December 1857 (LDS source) and they had:-
William J. Baker born September 1860 in Woodburn, Macoupin County, Illinois. William J. married Minnie L. Wildman (daughter of John Wildman and Narcissa nee Barnett, born at Shipman, Illinois), on 10th June 1884 at Shipman, Macoupin, Illinois, and they had Henry I (or T) Baker born about 1890 and Hazel T. Baker born about 1894 .

(John Wildman, born about 1824 and Narcissa.Barnett, born about 1833 (John and Narcissa married 15th December 1851 at Macoupin County)

Henry Baker is buried at Woodburn cemetery. Emma Baker nee Barnstable is also buried there. She died in 1885.

William J. Baker died 1909. Minnie died 1926. Henry L. died 1920. They are all buried at Woodburn cemetery, Macoupin.
1860 Illinois census has Henry as a 22 year old farmer in Macoupin County.

In 1870 USA census for Brighton, Macoupin County Henry Baker was a 33 year old farmer of real estate worth 4,200 US dollars. He was living with wife, Emma age 42, step daughter, Mary age 17, and son William age 9.

1910 USA census shows Minnie Baker born abt 1865 in Illinois, living at Bunker Hill, Macoupin County, Illinois, as the head of the house. She was living with a Hazel (not sure if daughter or not).
Our Henry Baker born abt 1838 in England was living at Brighton, Macoupin County.


This is a copy of a Biographical Sketch of Henry Baker:-
In the following copy of the Biographical Sketch of Henry Baker there are some mistakes found throughout mention of Henry?s family history such as dates, names and spelling of places.

Chicago: Biographical Publishing Company
Page 885
HENRY BAKER is one of the leading and most successful English-American farmers and stock raisers of Brighton Township, where he owns a very beautiful farm of one hundred and sixty acres, all of which is highly improved, and where he has a beautiful residence that is conspicuous for its completeness of finish and detail. There are also fine barns and outbuildings, which have been erected by himself, for this has been his home since 1860. he has besides some good land in Bunker Hill Township. Mr. Baker's advent to this county was made in 1856. He lived for one year in Chesterfield Township and three years in Woodburn, and then came into Brighton Township and purchased the place where he now resides. he came from England to this country in 1855.
Mr. Baker was born in Somersetshire, England, at South Pethering, May 27, 1839. He comes of good English family of pure stock. His father was Joseph Baker, a native of Somersetshire, and our subject's grandparents were natives of the same shire, being farmers, and there spending all their lives. His grandfather died when a very old man, upwards of four-score years. our subject's grandmother was in her maiden days Miss Mary Pittman, a daughter of William Pittman, an English farmer, who lived and died in his native shire. He was a carpenter by trade, and having been four times married outlived all his wives.
Mrs. Baker, mother of our subject, survived her husband Joseph Baker, and died a very old lady. our subject is the youngest of the family born to his parents and one of three to emigrate to this country. His brother John is now in Texas and a sister, who is Mrs. Job Keirl, lives in Bunker Hill Township. The original of our sketch grew up in his native shire, and there received a good English education, after which he learned the baker's trade and worked at it until he came to this country, being eighteen years of age when he made the momentous decision to leave his home. He left Liverpool on a steamer, and landing at New York City, came thence to Illinois and immediately proceeded to Chesterfield Township, Macoupin County.
In 1875 Mr. Baker returned to his old home in England and there enjoyed a delightful visit of six months' duration with the friends and relatives of his childhood. His marriage took place in Macoupin County and his bride was Mrs. Emma Lockyer, nee Barnstable. She was born in Somersetshire, England, about 1826. Her parents lived and died in their native land, where our subject's wife was first married to Richard Lockgar, after which they at once came to the United States and located in Woodburn, this county, and there was born one child, a daughter, who is now Mrs. William heal, of whom a fuller sketch may be found in her biography in another portion of this RECORD. Mr. Lockyer died in the prime of life, and some time after the death of her first husband she was untied to our subject, and she was to him a dutiful and loving wife. Her decease occurred at their home in this township January 27, 1835. She was well and favorably known here, and those who knew her the best were assured of her nobility of character. Mr. and Mrs. Baker were the parents of one son, William J.
William J. Baker took to wife Miss Minnie Wayman, of this county. They now live in Chesterfield Township, and are there prominent agriculturists. Mr. Baker is a prominent member of the Congregational Church of Woodburn, this State, as was his wife during her lifetime. Our subject has been one of the Trustees for many years. A Republican in politics, the original of our sketch is not in any sense an office-seeker.
[NOTE: Emma Lockyer?s husband name is given in one place as Lockyer and in another as Lockgar. Also, her death date (obviously an error) is given as January 27, 1835 in the above bio.]

2 comment(s), latest 12 years, 4 months ago

Joseph Baker and Betsey Pitman of South Petherton,Somerset , England


Betsey was the daughter of William Pitman and Mary Raison of South Petherton, Somerset, England. Betsey Pitman baptised to William & Mary 27th November 1808 at South Petherton. Age 1 ?.

On October 7th 1827 Joseph Baker & Betsey Pitman were witnesses at the marriage of Susannah Baker of South Petherton & James Warr of South Petherton.

The following year Betsey Pitman married Joseph Baker May 15th 1828 at South Petherton, Somerset. Witnesses were Thomas Baker & David Jeanes
Joseph & Betsey had the following children:
John Baker born South Petherton abt 1828
Mary Baker born South Petherton 1832
William Pitman Baker born South Petherton & christened 16 July 1837
Robert Baker born South Petherton & christened 13 November 1836
Henry Baker born South Petherton 1838
Elizabeth Baker born South Petherton 1841
Susan Baker born about 1843 at South Petherton

In 1840 Joseph Baker was sworn in as a Tythingman for the village parish, as a substitute for William Pitman, a carpenter.
1841 census has Joseph and Betsey living in Roundwell Street, close to William Pitman, with daughters Mary, age 10, and Elizabeth, age 5 months, and their son Henry age 3 years, and also with Leah Pitman age 17 years and Ebenezer Pitman age 15 years. Leah was Betsey's niece. Unknown who Ebenezer was.
Elizabeth Baker, being 5 months, would have been born about January. The 1841 census was taken in June.

According to the census Joseph Baker was an agricultural labourer, age 30 years, born in Somerset. Betsey was born about the same time.
In the 1851 census we find the families again. Joseph Baker has passed away.
(Joseph buried 24th February 1848 at SS Peter & Paul, South Petherton, age 42 years).

Betsey is now a widow. The family has moved to South Street, Aller, or Langport, Somerset. This move could have been made at any time following Joseph?s death. The family needed to earn a living. They lived at South Street, which appears to be leading towards Oath Hill. Oath Hill is known for its mystical association with the region of the summer stars. The constellation of Canis Major is called ?The Girt Dog of Langport?. Sirius, the brightest star in the night sky, touches down on Oath Hill.
Sirius is also known as King Arthur's dog, Cabal - "The Mysteries". King Arthur used Oath Hill as the sacred place where his Knights swore oaths and allegiance and commitments.
Aller is close to Othery, where Betsey?s daughter, Mary, would have met her future husband, Job Keirle who was of Othery parish.
Mary was living with her mother in the 1851 census but married Job in Middlesex the following year. They then returned to Somerset where most of their children were born.
In Aller, Betsey?s family consists of :
Betsey, age 43,born about 1808. She is a baker by trade.
John, now the head of the family, age 22 ? a baker
Mary age 20 ? a baker
Henry age 13
Elizabeth Baker age 10, born 1841
Susan age 7, born about 1843
All were entered as being born at South Petherton.

Betsey appears to have moved to Southwark, Surrey, sometime between 1851 and 1861, perhaps the move was to help Elizabeth find a suitable future.

1861 census finds Betsey living at St Saviour, Southwark, Surrey with Elizabeth, her daughter. Betsey has not remarried and Elizabeth is still unmarried. They are living at 1 Pond Yard. Betsey is a monthly nurse and Elizabeth is a sewing machine hand.
Definition of monthly nurse: a nurse who serves for a month or some short time, esp. one which attends women after childbirth. Used to be known as a confinement nurse who attended women during the first month after child birth. May also have the initials S.M.S. (Subsidiary Medical Services. i.e. not a doctor, but trained in some way ).
Betsey cannot be found after the 1861 census. A death is registered in Axbridge in 1867, age 64 could be our Betsey.

William Pitman & Mary Raison of South Petherton, Somerset, England

William PITMAN was born about 1771 supposedly at South Petherton, Somerset, England. He died in 1849. He was buried SS Peter & Paul, South Petherton 16th April 1849, age 79 years.
William Pitman married Mary Raison at SS Peter & Paul, South Petherton 31st January 1796. (Parish record extract)
Mary Raison was supposedly christened at Martock, Somerset in May 1770 to William Raison and his wife, Mary.
According to parish extracts of SS Peter & Paul, South Petherton, William and Mary had the following children:
Ann Pitman baptised 7th August 1796 at South Petherton.
(An Ann Pitman born 1796 died January 1816 at SS Peter & Paul ? age 19)
Charles Pitman was baptised at South Petherton, Somerset, 3rd June 1800.
A William born 22nd February 1804 at South Petherton. Died 28th September 1805. SS Peter & Paul.
A William born 13th July 1806, died April 1820 at SS Peter & Paul ? age 14
Betsey Pitman baptised to William & Mary 27th November 1808 at South Petherton. Age 1 ?

Other children who could have been William and Mary?s were:
A Mary Pitman, daughter of William and Mary was buried 12 Jul 1809, SS Peter & Paul.
A John Pitman baptised 1813 and died 1813. His father was a carpenter.

On April 22nd 1794 William Pitman was witness at the marriage of Betty RAISON and Robert WILLY, both of the parish (parish record). Betty was most likely Mary Raison?s sister. When William Pitman and Mary Raison married they named their daughter, Betsey, maybe after Mary?s sister.

Robert Willy was witness to the marriage of William Pitman and Mary Raison.
A submission to LDS says Robert (husband of Betty born about 1779) was born about 1775 at South Petherton and died April 1818 at South Petherton. Another submission says Betty was born about 1773 and Robert in 1767. This one has Betty?s surname down as Russon and that they were married 1794. The date is right, the surname wrong.

Other Pitmans of interest:
A Mary Pitman died 1836 age 71 at SS Peter & Paul ? born 1766, no other information.
An Ann died 1803 at South Petherton. She was a widow. (Possible mother to William?).
A Mary Pitman buried 16th October 1812 at SS Peter & Paul, wife of William. No age given. Possibly Mary nee RAISON.

There were few Pitman?s and Raison?s in South Petherton during this era. There were more in the Martock area. Martock is 3 miles from South Petherton.

According to a historical Biographical sketch on Henry Baker from Illinois, USA, (grandson of William Pitman), William Pitman was an English farmer and carpenter who lived and died in his native shire, which would be South Petherton. The sketch also states that Henry?s grandfather, (whether the Pitman, or the Baker Grandfather is not determined yet), married four times and outlived all his wives. (This has not yet been proven.)

1841 census shows William Pitman age 70, born abt 1771, living in Roundwell Street, South Petherton, not far from Joseph and Betsey Baker (Betsey was William Pitman?s daughter). Staying with William that night were Joseph and Betsey Baker?s sons, John, William and Robert Baker. William?s occupation was a carpenter. He was born in Somerset. John Baker was age 13 years, William aged 8 years and Robert aged 6 years.
Living also with William was William Pitman, age 14. William Pitman was born to Charles (William?s son) and Martha at SS Peter & Paul, South Petherton and baptised 29 August 1827. (Extracted parish records)

Piggott?s Directory 1830 shows:-
William Pitman, occupation: Carpenter of Petherton.

South Petherton Parish Records - Positions held 1715 ? 1842
William Pitman was a Tythingman for the local village parish.
A Tythingman was locally appointed and his duties were to preserve good order in the parish or the church, to make a complaint of any disorderly conduct and to enforce the observance of the Sabbath. He was a peace officer under the constable of the parish. He also presided over the tithing.
William was also a Grass Hayward in 1812 for the parish. A Hayward was originally the guardian of the fence or hedge. Originally to keep the stock enclosed or to keep the stock out of the crops.

And William was a constable in 1828. The constable was the peace keeper of the parish under the sheriff.

Surviving children of William Pitman & Mary Raison:-

Charles Pitman married Martha Paul in 1822 at Martock, Somerset, England. Martha was the daughter of William Paul and his wife, Elizabeth. Martha born abt 1799 at possibly Martock, Somerset. She was christened at Martock on 7th January 1799. William Paul was later the South Petherton Constable. Both William Paul and Elizabeth Paul were deceased before 1853, according to Martha?s immigration records when she and Charles sailed to Australia in 1853.
Charles Pitman was a carpenter by trade. Charles and Martha and three of their children, Leah, Eliza and William, migrated to Australia.
Have found no record of Ann Pitman. She may have died at South Petherton in 1816.
Betsey Pitman married Joseph Baker on May 15th 1828 at South Petherton. Joseph died in 1848 at South Petherton.

Eliza Pitman and Henry Griffin of South Petherton, Somerset, England, and NSW, Australia

History of Eliza PITMAN

This is the information I have on Eliza. Any additions or corrections would be greatly appreciated.

Granddaughter of William Pitman and Mary Raison of South Petherton, Somerset, England, Daughter of Charles Pitman and Martha Paul.

Eliza was born to Charles Pitman and Martha Paul in March 1826 at South Petherton and baptised 29th August 1827.
She married Henry Griffin, son of John Griffin and Elizabeth, on 21st August 1848 at SS Peter and Paul, South Petherton, Somerset, England. Henry was a labourer. Bride?s father was Charles Pitman, a carpenter. Groom?s father was John Griffin, a labourer.
REG no: 172.

Shortly after their marriage Eliza and Henry migrated to Australia.
Eliza Griffin nee Pitman, age 24, and her husband, Henry, age 26, arrived in N.S.W. Australia in 1849, on the ?Julindur?. Film number: 2135 & 2459.
They began their lives in Australia at Camden, NSW. Later they moved to Dubbo and remained there until their deaths.

Eliza and Henry had:

Charles H. Griffin 1852 NSW
William R. Griffin 1857 Liverpool, NSW
Mary A. Griffin 1862 Camden, NSW
Henrietta M. Griffin 1863 Camden, NSW
Edwin Randolph Griffin 1866 Camden, NSW

Henry Griffin died 1904, age 79, at Brocklehurst, Dubbo

Possible Marriages for the next generation:-

Henrietta M. Griffin married John Rowe at Dubbo in 1892. REG: 3407

A Mary A. Griffin married Peter Bopping at Braidwood, NSW in 1895 (unsure if this is the right Mary A. Griffin)

Edwin Griffin married Mary J. Hull at Dubbo in 1896. REG:1029
Mary Jane Hull, born Goulburn 20.11.1866 & died Troy (near Dubbo), 1944 (23.12.1944), married Dubbo 24.3.1896 to Edwin Randolph Griffin, who died 5.3.1955, aged 87. Both buried Old Dubbo cemetery.
Edwin?s wife, Mary Jane was the daughter of Jacob and Mary Ann Hull. Jacob was the brother of Joseph Hull, who married Mary Jane?s maternal aunt, Leah Hull nee Pitman.

A Melva E. Griffin married Thomas L. Purvis at Dubbo in 1920.
Melva E. could have been Ethel Melba Purvis who I found in the 1830 electoral roll for NSW.

Edith Irene Griffin married William Peter Nugent at Dubbo in 1936

A Grace B. (Bell?) Griffin married William Blackman at Dubbo in 1927

Herbert Randolph Griffin married Eileen Audrey Bruce at Dubbo in 1936.

Dorothy L.R. Griffin married James W. Johnstone at Dubbo in 1926.

Australian Electoral roll 1830:-
District of Gwydir, subdistrict of Gilgandra:-

Athol James Griffin, Illawarra, Mago Forest, Farmer.
Edith Irene Griffin, Bundalouie, Brocklehurst, Home duties. (Daughter of Edwin and Mary Jane)
Edward (Edwin ?) Randolph Griffin, Brocklehurst, farmer.
(Son of Henry & Eliza)
Grace Bell Griffin, Bundalouie, Brocklehurst, home duties.
Herbert Randolph Griffin, Brocklehurst, labourer.
(Son of Edwin and Mary Jane)
Mary Jane Griffin, Bundalouie, Brocklehurst, Home duties.
(Wife of Edwin)

Henrietta Matilda Rowe, Brocklehurst, home duties.
(Daughter of Henry & Eliza ?) (no mention of her husband)

District of Gwydir, subdistrict of Dubbo:-
William Blackman, Gas Lane, Dubbo, Laborer.
Grace Belle, Gas Lane, Dubbo, home duties.
(Daughter of Edwin and Mary Jane ?)

Dorothy Lil Rose Johnstone, Robinvale, Terramungamine, Dubbo, home duties.
(Daughter of Edwin and Mary Jane) (no mention of her husband)

District of Eden-Monaro, subdistrict of Braidwood:-
Ballalaba is via Braidwood.

Arthur Edward Bopping, Ballalaba, farmer.
Arthur Edward Bopping junior, Ballalaba, labourer.
Catherine Isobel Bopping, Ballalaba, home duties.
John Bopping, Coghill Street, Braidwood, Farmer.
Mary Ann Bopping, Ballalaba, Home duties.
(probably the daughter of Henry & Eliza Griffin)
Victor Emanuel Bopping, Ballalaba, Labourer.

District of Darling, subdistrict of Gilgandra:-

Alfred Henry Griffin, Robin Vale, Terramungamine, Farmer.
Arthur Griffin, Illawarra, Mogriguy, Farmer and Grazier.
Athol James Griffin, Illawarra, Mago Forest, Farmer.
Edith Irene Griffin, Robin Vale, Terramungamine, home duties.
Edward Randolph Griffen, Brocklehurst, Farmer.
Herbert Randolph Griffen, Brocklehurst, Labourer.
Hilda May Griffin, Illawarra, Mogriguy, home duties
Lea Lavina Griffin, Brocklehurst, via Dubbo, Home duties.
Lila Jane Griffin, Ilawarra, Mogriguy, Home duties.
Mary Ann Griffin, Ilawarra, Mogriguy, Home duties.
Mary Jane Griffin, Robin Vale, Terramungamine, home duties.
Almerta Ruby Griffin, Mountain View, Eumungerie, home duties.

ALSO in this Electoral roll: Henrietta Matilda Rowe, Brocklehurst,
(She could be the Daughter of Henry & Eliza Griffin?)

Leah Pitman and Joseph Hull of Somerset, England and NSW, Australia

Family History of Leah Pitman

This is the information I have on Leah Pitman. Any additions or corrections to this would be welcome.

Grandaughter of William Pitman & Mary Raison, of South Petherton, Somerset, England, and daughter of Charles Pitman & Martha Paul.

Leah Pitman was christened November 3rd 1824 at South Petherton, Somerset, England to Charles and Martha.
In December quarter 1845 she gave birth to a son, Benjamin Godden Pitman (no father named), at South Petherton. However his father could have been a Godden. Usually the surname of the father of a child born out of wedlock was given as a second Christian name upon registration of the birth.
In 1853 Leah, Benjamin, and Leah?s parents, Charles and Martha sailed on the ship Talavera from Southampton, England on 1st June 1853 to New South Wales, Australia. Arrived 25th August 1853.
Film number 2465

Leah?s brother, William, and her sister, Eliza were already in NSW, Australia.

Ship?s records contain the following information:

Charles Pitman age 50 Born South Petherton, Somerset.
Parents: William & Mary, both deceased. Church of England.
Occupation: Carpenter. Can read & write. In good health.

Martha Pitman age 50 Born Martock, Somerset
Parents: William & Elizabeth, both deceased. Church of England.
Wife of Charles. Can read & write. In good health.

Leah Pitman age 27 Born South Petherton, Somerset.
Parents: Charles & Martha, both on board ship. Church of England.
Occupation: Domestic Servant. Can read & write. In good health.

Benjamin Pitman age 7 Born South Petherton, Somerset.
Parents: on board ship. Church of England.

Notes on the family:
Charles and Martha's son, William, & daughter, Eliza, both living at Woolomooloo, NSW. Son, William Pitman paid 34 pounds for travel cost under the ??? regulations.

As inspected by Immigration Board September 1853.

The ship was released from quarantine following inspection on 6th September 1853.

William Pitman, Leah's brother came to N.S.W. Australia in 1850, age 22, on the ?Cornwall?. Film number: 2136, & 2461

Leah's sister, Eliza Griffin nee Pitman, age 24, and her husband, Henry, age 26, arrived in N.S.W. Australia in 1849, on the ?Julindur?. Film number: 2135 & 2459.


In 1856 Leah gave birth to a daughter at Camden, NSW Registration: 4105 (no father named), however that year she married Joseph Hull.
(Camden is about 50 km southwest from Sydney)

The child was eventually named Elizabeth Mary H. (the H could stand for HULL).
In 1856 Leah married Joseph Hull at Parramatta.

Leah and Joseph had the following children:
Elizabeth Mary H. 1856 Camden
Female 1860 Camden Could have been Sarah A
Emily 1862 Camden
Joseph W. 1864 Camden died Dubbo in 1883
Anney J.(or Amy Jane) 1868 Dubbo

The books ?Dubbo to the Turn of the Century? by Marion Dormer published 1981 and ?Dubbo 100 years of Local Government? printed 1972, and ?Early Pioneers of Dubbo pre 1882 & Pioneer Register of Dubbo & Western Region of NSW? mentions the Hull family.
Joseph Hull had 1,600 acres at "Berida" about 50 miles from Dubbo, on which he grazed 3,000 sheep. He also rented 1,280 acres from his brother, the property known as "New Berida".

NB: Berida is just north of Collie, between Gilgandra & Warren, off the Oxley Highway. There is information about Berida Station historical records at the University of New England Heritage Centre. Berida Station is located midday between Gilgandra and Collie on Marthaguy Creek.

Leah Hull died 1900 at Dubbo.

Information on children of Leah and Joseph:-

Elizabeth Mary H. Hull (Pitman) born 1856 at Camden died 1949
married Thomas Henry Purvis (known as Henry) in 1874
Female Hull born 1860 at Camden
If this is Sarah A. she married William Hall in 1888 at Dubbo.
Emily Hull born 1862 at Camden
Married Alexander Murray D. Black at Dubbo in 1882
Joseph W. Hull born 1864 at Camden. Died Dubbo in 1883
Anney J. born 1868 at Dubbo
If this is Amy Jane she married Joseph A. Brown in 1886 at Dubbo

The following could be Leah?s parents death dates:-
A Martha died 1854, age 55 years, in NSW
A Charles Pitman died Dubbo, NSW in 1876