Monday, June 24, 2013

Tall Tales

Much of the supposed greatness of Victorian Britain was linked to colonial expansion. Some of our British ancestors benefited from this at home, while others were actively involved in conquering lands on behalf of the Empire. We should not forget that every British victory was a defeat for someone else.

Reports of the events in South Africa on the 22nd and 23rd January 1879 capture the popular imagination more than others. Here is a brief summary from what I can glean online. The moring of 22 January, the commander of the British-Colonial force, Lord Chelmsford, had marched out of a temporary camp at Isandlwana with much of his column to make a reconnaissance in force with a view to bringing the Zulu army to battle. Guarding the camp, he left Lt-Col Pulleine commanding six companies of the 24th Foot, some companies of the 3rd Natal Native Contingent, and two artillery pieces.

As the day progressed, unknown to Chelmsford, the Zulu army slipped successfully between his force and the camp. Pulleine's patrols detected some Zulu movements, but he wasn't unduly alarmed and made no special preparation for defense. Mid-morning Lt-Col Durnsford arrived with more colonial units, and decided to investigate the Zulu movements. In the course of this, one of his units stumbled upon the Zulu army, numbering about 20,000. Apparently the Zulu commander was planning for an engagement the following day, but, having been discovered, the whole army moved to an immediate offensive. Their traditional "buffalo" attack had a strong center, with horns on each flank designed to encircle the camp. There was also a reserve.

The defenders, numbering about 1300, formed a firing line some way out of the camp. For a while firepower from the British-Colonial line held the Zulus at bay. It is thought that Durnsford's units, which had been in action the longest, began to run short of ammunition, and their fire slackened. The Natal Native Contingent, with few firearms in the first place and little ammunition for what they had, retreated, rather than rely on their spears and shields against overwhelming numbers. 

This was all the disorganization the Zulu regiments needed to break into the defensive position. The fight became one of localized skirmishes with defenders fighting back-to-back until their ammunition was expended, and then bayonet-to-assegai until they were all killed. Some took to their heels to escape the battlefield. A treacherous river crossing and the Zulu encirclement made that route hard to escape, although there were a few who survived to tell the tale. A militia army with spears and shields had defeated a professional force armed with the latest technology.

Following this fight, and through the night into the small hours, the Zulu reserve attacked the Rorke's Drift mission defended by about 150 men, situated a few miles to rear of the camp. The defenders were able to fight them to exhaustion, winning 11 Victoria Crosses in one day. Rorke's Drift held, and Chelmsford was able to regroup his column. And the Victorian public could have some consolation for the Zulu victory at Isandlwana.

You can gather from this that I have proof that my 3xgreat uncle Lonsdale Denoon Young was the Lt L D Young killed at Isandlwana on 22 January 1879. With the evidence I reported in the post All Those Gentlemen, I posted a query on the rootschat forum on whether there were sources that might better specify the given names of Lt L D Young. I was not disappointed, and received replies from three people.

Here is the sum of the evidence. The gravesite at Isandlwana can be found on the International Find a Grave Index. According to this site, Lieutenant L D Young belonged to the 2nd Natal Native Contingent. Elsewhere I find he was in the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Natal Native Contingent, which is more likely since this unit was engaged at the battle.

An almost immediate response to my query kindly directed me to a medal award for this campaign. The reference is WO 100 piece 49 (UK, Military Campaign Medals and Award Rolls, South Africa 1877-79). Among the Natal Native Contingent is an award to one Lieutenant Lonsllale [sic] D Young for his service in the Zulu campaign 1879. There is no mention that he was killed, although this must be the same person as buried on the Isandlwana battle-site; this is the only L D Young in the medal list. The two ells in the middle of Lonsllale might have occurred in copying a "d" that was left open. I certainly can find no evidence of Lonsllale itself being anyone's name. I conclude that this and the gravesite are records for Lonsdale Denoon Young. He was 20 years old when he died.

Also in All Those Gentlemen, I went on to speculate that perhaps the two brothers, Heydon Charles and Lonsdale Denoon Young, had emigrated to South Africa together. There are in fact two Youngs listed as medal recipients for the 1879 campaign; the other is only given by initials, and they are H C Young, consistent with my speculation.

Did Heydon Charles Young leave any other documentary footprint in South Africa? I came across a searchable index for South African records, from which the following confirm the presence of Heydon Charles Young.
     1888 Reference GPO307/1888 
          Mr. Heydon Young, Postmaster umBilo: Letter of appointment duly stamped 
          and certified copy thereof.

There is also a recorded generated by MCSE, which I gather is a probate court, so may be a record concerning his death. I do not know what s/sp means, but the name may be for his spouse.
     1912 Reference 44/219 
          Young, Heydon Charles (s/sp Young, Isabella Mary Ann)

But even more remarkably, there are sources that place Heydon Charles Young in the 1879 campaign with his brother, and with a certain amount of controversy. With some help from replies on the rootschat forum, and some digging on google, I discovered the following. According to Ian Knight's Zulu Rising, about a month after the Battle of Isandlwana, a letter in the Echo newspaper 24 February 1879 from one Lieutenant H C Young gave a narrative of the battle. This author claimed to have fought side-by-side with his brother, Lieutenant L D Young, until the latter was killed by a shot to the head. This account was also published in English newspapers. Shortly after this, another officer, Lieutenant Higginson refuted the account in a letter to the Natal Mercury 16 May 1879, claiming that H C Young had fallen out sick the day before the battle. It's possible that H C Young was simply glory-seeking, but from a more sympathetic angle, perhaps, distraught with grief and guilt, he really believed that he had been present at the battle.

And lastly there is this account of Walter Stafford, a bona fide survivor of the battle, who described Lt L D Young's last moments. This account was published in the Natal Mercury, 22 January 1929, a 50th anniversary article (and many thanks to John who sent me this extract):
... The fleet-footed Zulus kept at our heels, and a small gain I had made on them was lost when at one of the dongas I came across a wounded man. After several attempts on his part to get a foot into one of my stirrups I managed to pull him up behind me. He had an assegai wound under his arm and was so weak from loss of blood that I could hardly feel him holding me. He had managed to tell me that he was Young of Lonsdale's Horse [sic] when we got to a donga 12 feet wide. In taking the jump my horse's hind feet did not get a firm hold on the other side and it slipped. While it was recovering itself poor Young lost his seat and fell back.

The Zulus were then right on top of us, and poor Young was killed, although Harry Davis, who had come up, and I did our best for him. A little further on we came across Lieutenant Erskine, unable to go further on account of an assegai wound through the calf of one of his legs...
Young was not in Lonsdale's Horse, and it's possible Stafford misunderstood him saying his first name.

All of this seems quite remarkable to me. It would not perhaps be uncommon to find that a relative had died at a particular battle, but that we should find a published account of Lonsdale's death must be highly unusual. And then there is the controversy surrounding his brother's tall tales. We may have questions about Heydon's motives in this. Indeed, we may have questions about their role in the whole imperial enterprise. But I also think of them about six years before, when the then 19-year-old Heydon picked up his younger brother and signed the discharge register at Christ's Hospital School, a world of adventure before them.

Cairn marking British mass grave at Isandlwana

Monday, June 17, 2013

Some Loose Ends Tied

Among my objectives for genealogical research is to document the siblings of my direct ancestors. Not only does this put my ancestors' lives into perspective, but the documentation of siblings might yield clues pointing to the preceding generation. To this end, I never feel I can rest until I have a full set of BMD Index, parish and census data for an ancestor or a sibling. Or perhaps I'm merely rationalizing an obsessive impulse!

This post presents the available data - at least the data I've found - for Sarah Halton Birkett, wife of William Taylor, solicitor of 3 Cloak Lane, even at the risk of repeating some that I've already referenced earlier on the blog. These are my 4xgreat grandparents, and parents of Charlotte (who married James Denoon Young). At the same time, I will present available data for another of their daughters, Zoe Emmeline (who married James Bertrand Payen Payne). But some loose ends remain.

The post Meet the Birketts expands on Sarah Halton Birkett's family. I begin here with the record of her baptism on 21 July 1799 at St Stephen, Walbrook.
          Was baptized Sarah Halton Daughter of 
          John Birkett and Charlotte his Wife 
          Born 20th April 1799
          Note of the Parish of Stephen Walbrook

This is before the 1837 introduction of civil birth, marriage and death registers for England and Wales, as is the record of her marriage to William Taylor at St Thomas the Apostle in the City of London on 13 December 1821.

The marriage is also recorded in Pallott's Marriage Index:
     Taylor Wm b(St Faiths London)
          =  Sarah Halton Birkett
               p. lic[ence]
     St Thomas Apostle 1821

The baptismal register at St Michael Paternoster in the City of London on 2 March 1826 records their children William Lonsdale (born 19 July 1824) and Charlotte (born 15 January 1826), giving father's occupation as Solicitor, and address 3 Cloak Lane. William Lonsdale was apparently baptized twice, his first baptism on 1 September 1824 at St Thomas the Apostle gives the same name and birthday for the child, and same names, occupation and address for the parents. As previously reported, 3 Cloak Lane is also the address of the Birketts in 1828 (Articles of Clerkship) and 1848 (Post Office Book).

The next documentary appearance, I could find, is another baptism, this time at St Giles in the Fields Holborn on 27 November 1840 of Zoe, daughter of William and Sarah Taylor. His occupation is given as Solicitor, their address as 59 Gt Queen Street. Great Queen Street is close to The Rookery, Hogarth's inspiration for Gin Lane, but also closer to Lincoln's Inn and the legal district of London. I can find no BMD Birth Index entry for Zoe Taylor. However, Zoe Young proved hard to trace due to difficulties in transcription for the name Zoe, and I suspect that something similar has happened for her aunt. 

Great Queen Street is where I find them for the 1841 England Census. The reproduction of this census transcript is quite poor - although this may be faithful to the original - and I am rather relying on the index provided by
     William Taylor   40    Solicitor      No [not born in the county]
     Sarah Taylor     45                      No
     Berbet Taylor   15                      No
     Charlotte Taylor 15                     No

But I note the absence of William Lonsdale and Zoe, which, without the St Giles baptism, would lead me to doubt that this is the correct family. William Lonsdale may have died by 1841; I have no further record of him. But I do have later records of Zoe, so she may be recorded elsewhere.

I'd suspected that Berbet (age is in the "male" column of the census return) should be Robert, or possibly Herbert. The equal ages of 15 years for the younger two Taylors does not require that they are twins. The 1841 census rounded ages down to the nearest 5 years. As we can tell from the baptismal record, Charlotte really was 15 at census time; but whoever "Berbet" was, he could have been born between 1822 and 1826.

Although there are Robert and Herbert Taylors of about the right age, none of them was constistent with other family data. Looking at the return again I thought to try Birkett as the given name, and found that Christ Church, City of London has a baptismal record on 22 November 1822 for Birkett Wilfred (or rather, Wilfrid) Taylor son of William and Sarah, Solicitor of Paternoster Row, born October 25, 1822. Also for Birkett Wilfred Taylor are Articles of Clerkship dated 1838 and a burial record for 8 July 1843 at St Thomas the Apostle, corresponding to BMD Death Index Dec1843 London 2 111. If I am reading correctly, the Articles of Clerkship bound him to Joseph Bebb for five years from 8 or 10 May 1838, so he died not long after completing his clerkship.

I have plenty of evidence that Zoe Emmeline Taylor is the sister of the Charlotte whose baptism I have presented above. The first piece is the 1851 England Census at 31 Michael Street, Kensington in the household of Edward Colnett, Boarding House Keeper:
     Sarah H Taylor    Wid  51  Annuitant     Middx, Walbrook
     Charlotte             Unm 25                     Middx, College Hill
     Zoe                     Unm 10                     Middx, St Giles

This return I have mentioned before. Interestingly it includes James Denoon Young, who would marry Charlotte a few months later. College Hill, by the way, is off Cloak Lane. William Taylor had died during the preceding 10 years. Finding the death record will be difficult because there are hundreds of recorded death for such a common name.

After this I had no more record until Sarah's death. BMD Death Index has Sarah Halton Taylor Dec1877 Brighton 2b 124 Age:76. This is a death certificate that may be worth having. Had she moved to Brighton? Who was she staying with?

It was in searches designed to find her daughter Zoe that I found her last two census records. I looked for a Zoe Taylor born in 1840 in Lincolns Inn. I found an entry on the LDS site for the 1861 England Census in Kensington for a "... Taylor". But this only shows an individual entry. Searching for the corresponding family group in, I found, at ?? (the return transcript is torn) House near Notting Hill Square, Kensington in the household of  Elizabeth England:
     Sarah H Taylor   Boarder Widow  61  Lives own Means
                                                                  Middlesex, Walbrook
     Zoe Taylor         Boarder  Un       20  Lives own Means
                                                                  Middlesex, Lincoln's Inn Fields                          

The index has them as Sarah H Gaylor and Lo?? Taylor, which is why I hadn't seen this return before. Having seen "Loe" as a transcript variant of Zoe, the next census entry came from an search for a Loe Taylor born 1839-1849. The 1871 England Census for the household of "James Bethany Bayne" at Grange Terraces Tempsford House has:
     James Bertrand Payne   Head   Mar       37  late? Capt Royal Artillery
     Zoe Payne                    Wife    Mar      29
     Sarah H Taylor             Mother Widow 75
     James B D  do              Son                  4
     Ralph S H   do              Son                  3 m

The address of Tempsford House, The Grange, Brompton is given as the address for J Bertrand Payne in the Catalogue for the Paris Universal Exhibition of 1867. Also, Tempsford House was the scene in January 1871 (not long before the census) of a "Singular Boiler Explosion". In this return (it is actually the census enumator book, a compilation of the householders' returns), Zoe is written above a crossed out Emmeline, and should be indexed as Payne, not Taylor. Sarah H appears as Sarah A; she should, of course be mother-in-law, and only 72 years old, but who's counting. And the sons' last name should be Payne and not Taylor. But apart from that the return is fine!

The marriage of James Bertrand Payne and Zoe Emmeline Young is recorded in BMD Marriage Index Mar1864 St George Hanover Square 1a 387 (a certificate I reported in All These Gentlemen).

The 1881 England Census for 53 Camden Park Road for the household of Charlotte Dunn, I have reported before in Witnesses to a Wedding. Suffice to tell here that it includes Zoe Payne 35 and her daughter Mabel 7. The 1891 England Census return for Zoe also proved difficult to find. I already had the 1901 and 1911 returns, and was drawing a blank. So I searched for Mabel Payne, and found this return at 41 Handforth Road, Lambeth:
     James Payne    Head     M 55 Living on own means  London
     Emily Payne    Wife      M 47                                  London
     Mabel Payne    Daur      S  14                                  London
     Charles Penney Nephew S 29 living on own means    Liverpool

Emily may be the name she goes by at this time, although this may itself be a census enumerator's misreading for Emmy. Liverpool as place of birth for the nephew is certainly wrong, as the next two returns for Zoe (Emmeline/Emily) will show.

James Bertrand Payen Payne died in 1898 (BMD Death Index Sep1898 Fulham 1a 253 Age:65). The 1901 England Census finds Zoe Emmeline in the household of her nephew Charles Penney at 7 Aldebert Terrace, Lambeth:
     Charles Penney                    Head   S       39 Tutor             Dorset, Weymouth
     Zoe Emmeline Payen-Payne Aunt    Wid   58                      London, St Giles
     Mabel Zoe Payen-Payne      Cousin  Daur of widow 27
                                                         Clerk in Insurance Office  London, Kensington
     Plus a visitor and a servant.

And in 1911 at 22 Kensington Crescent, Kensington:
     Charles Penney                    Head  Single    49 Tutor  Weymouth, Dorset
     Zoe Emmeline Payen-Payne Aunt   Widow  70  Private Means
                                                                                    Lincoln's Inn Field, London
     Mabel Zoe Payen-Payne      Cousin Single    37 Clerk to Charity Organization
                                                                                    Kensington, London
     Plus a boarder and servants.

BMD Death Index has Zoe Payen Payne Dec1920 Greenwich 1d 1001 Age:80

In all this I have accumulated much documentation for Sarah Halton Birkett (married name Taylor) and Zoe Emmeline Taylor (Payen-Payne). But I lack an 1841 census for the latter, and her BMD Birth Index Entry. One lead, an Emmeline Taylor born in Islington 1840 turns out to be the daughter of John Taylor, Beer Seller (1841) and Licensed Victualler (1861). In this latter census she is a barmaid - not our Zoe Emmeline, whose BMD Birth Index record may be one of the 3 unnamed female Taylors born in central London registration districts Dec1839 to Dec1840.

We now have evidence for four children born to William and Sarah Halton Taylor:
     Birkett Wilfred          1822 baptized at Christ Church
     William Lonsdale      1824 baptized at St Thomas the Apostle
                                                                          and St Michael Paternoster
     Charlotte                  1826 baptized at St Michael Paternoster
     Zoe Emmeline           1840 baptized at St Giles in the Fields

It is most likely that there are other children - I would estimate from 3 to 6 - born after Charlotte and before Zoe remaining to be discovered. If any of them survived I might expect to find them in 1841 in the same household as Zoe. This may yield more clues to the family of origin of William Taylor, Solicitor of 3 Cloak Lane.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Lays of the Lakes and More

Lower Rydall Falls 1837 by Thomas Fearnley

This has been a productive week genealogically, and rather than spread the research out over several weeks, I have decided to publish while it's still fresh and exciting in my mind. First I have some more on Catherine Ponsonby that would confirm her as the sister of my 3xgreat grandfather, James Denoon Young. And although I still have no leads on any South African connection for Lonsdale Denoon Young, I do have one for Euphemia Chamberlain Young.

Just in case we would need more evidence that Catherine Ponsonby was the sister of James Denoon Young, here is a poem from her book, Lays of the Lakes, and Other Poems of Description and Reflection(1850). Page 16 has this title and opening stanza:
               After visiting the celebrated falls at Rydal.
               Addressed to my little nieces.

               Catherine and Jemima dear,
               Were you with little brother here,
               You would much delighted be,
               With all the wonders you would see,
               In this land of lovely lakes,
               Mountains high and woody brakes.

The nieces, Catherine and Jemima are surely the children of her brother, James Denoon Young. In 1850 they would have been aged 8 and 10 respectively. And they would be the same Catherine and "Jemmia" Young from Catherine Pononby's 1851 Scotland Census at 6 Drummond Place (See the previous post, Clerk in Orders). Presumably she had taken their little brother, James Denoon Young, junior, about age 5,  to the Lake District. Since the other sister Ann Walker is not mentioned by name, I suspect she had died before the poem was written. If so, then she is probably not the author of the "Sunday School Hymn", noted in my previous post. And the whole of this poem is, perhaps, an allusion to her death, and she is (as are we) the "limpid stream" told by the "heap of Rocks":

               "I will stay you tiny thing,
               With your pearly current flowing,
               Where the mountain flowers are growing;

               Little streamlet! Get you gone!
               You shall here no longer run;
               You shall not permitted be,
               Thus to pass, as you shall see."

The stream goes on regardless of this rock and others obstructing its path, until it leaps into the Fall and joins the Lake. The poem could be read as applying to any obstruction we might encounter in life, but, in my reading, the closing stanza is looking heavenward in a conventional Christian sense, and is surely about life and death and destiny.

               The moral is, a gentle mind
               When resisted, we may find
               In its holy course of life,
               Shrinks not from unequal strife
               With the world - and thus may rise
               To high triumph in the skies!

In her preface, Catherine Ponsonby extolls the virtues of religious poetry, and the purpose of the book is clearly for religious inspiration, largely through reflection on the Book of Nature.

          The tendency of such a species of Sacred Poetry is undoubtedly to strengthen
          the spiritual life of the Christian, and to excite a spirit of devotion in the soul.

The front page also lists a number of other works she had authored:
          The Prospect, or Scenes of Real Life
          The Mysteries of Providence and Triumphs of Grace
          The Countess D'Auvergne, or Sufferings of the French Protestants

And "&c&c" suggests there were more. Googlebooks has in addition:
          The Etheringtons (1833) - with Lady Georgiana Bourke
          The Border Wardens: An Historical Romance (1844)
          The Desborough family (1845)
          The Protege (1847)
          Geneva: A Poem (1849)
          Confession not the Confessional (1859)

The Etheringtons was published anonymously, although an annotated copy exists attributing authorship to Lady Georgina Bourke. I don't know where Catherine comes into this, although I suspect it is a googlebooks error. Lady Georgina was Georgina Sarah Ponsonby, daughter of the 4th Earl of Bessington.

I have already noted that Catherine ran a school, at least from 1841 (the census return mentions a school), and this ran until at least 1854, when The Christian Family Advocate includes a prospectus. By the late 1850s, Catherine Ponsonby was in a difficult financial position with bankruptcy proceedings against her in the Edinburgh Gazette. Publishing probably required her to borrow money, and her sales plus teaching income probably could not repay the investment. The last record I can find for her is in 1859, where her solicitor has arranged a meeting for her creditors to decide on an offer (Edinburgh Gazette).

As for her son Henry James Ponsonby, I found that he was an alumnus of Dr. Boyd's Fourth High School Class. Although I had never heard of Dr. Boyd, I gather from an 1872 publication that he was quite an inspirational professor for his "old boys" to continue to meet for 20-some years after graduation. The publication has a "where are they now" section. Henry James Ponsonby is described as the son of the "Late Adolphus Ponsonby, Litterateur", which seems a little unfair, since I can find no record of his works, but plenty to Henry James's mother. By 1873, Henry James Ponsonby had been in Australia for 15 or 16 years, and was currently working the Gold Diggings and was still unmarried at that time. He was thought of as a talented writer and social commentator by his peers. Were his mother alive after 1859, I would not be surprised to find her in Australia.

A reference to his father appears in the August 1832 of a periodical Polonia, as a member of the Glasgow Polish Association. The context for this was the Polish struggle for independence from Russia, which liberal sentiment in Britain supported.

And now to South Africa. The absence of BMD Death Index entries for some of the Young siblings, children of James Denoon Young and Charlotte Taylor, suggests that they either moved to Scotland or Ireland, or else emigrated from the British Isles altogether. North America would be one destination, but other Imperial destinations could include Australia, New Zealand, India and South Africa. I have already shared speculation that Lonsdale Denoon Young met his end on a battlefield in South Africa, which is not proven. Certainly, if he'd died in England, I think we would have found a BMD Death Index by now, and the same is true for his brother Heydon Charles Young.

Neither does their sister, Euphemia Chamberlain Young, have an England and Wales BMD Death Index record, but there is a marriage, BMD Marriage Index Dec1894 Kensington 1a 186. Married at the same time and place are both Tyeth Darracott Bounsall and Frank Umblali Reynolds, and Emily Elizabeth Ellis. In order to figure out which of these gentlemen were married to Euphemia, I searched for census returns and discovered that Tyeth had clearly married Emily, which means that Frank Umblali Reynolds must be the man!

So who is he? A search on for his name was not helpful. But when I typed his name into a google search field, I got as far as "Frank Um..." and was prompted to look for Sir Frank Umhlali Reynolds, who turns out to be a South African sugar magnate, born 1852, a friend of the first Prime Minister Louis Botha. Sir Frank had a house built for successive South African Prime Ministers at Pennington, called Botha House, which became the scene for talks between Nelson Mandela and FW de Klerk in the early 1990s as apartheid came to an end.

The Pennington estate also contained Lynton Hall, built by Sir Frank's father, Charles, who lived there for 10 years after its completion in 1895. After this Sir Frank and, presumably Euphemia, took up residence. I have their deaths from a public user tree (unconfirmed) as 1930. Lynton Hall is now a hotel and appears to be for sale.

So, if you're in South Africa researching the Young/Taylor family line, I hope this blog can be of some assistance. And just maybe you might be able to assist me in seeing if there are records out there showing that Euphemia's brothers had preceded her to the colony.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Clerk in Orders

Not a phrase I'd come across, "Clerk in Orders", even though I could have become one. And if you read my other blog you will know that I have more than a passing interest in matters theological. This post explores the possibility, that, as they say in these parts, I come by it honestly!

Charlotte Taylor and James Denoon Young were married (see A Change of Name) on 23 December 1851 at Holy Trinity, Brompton. The marriage certificate gives the name and occupation of James's father as James Young, Clerk in Orders. That is, James Denoon Young was a preacher's kid. The Reverend James Young would be my 4xgreat grandfather.

But this was not his first marriage being a widower. Scotland Marriages 1561-1910 from the LDS familysearch site has a record of the marriage of James D Young and Jemima J Foggo 10 July 1837 in Perth. And Scotland Births and Baptisms 1564-1950 from the same site records the following children in Perth from this marriage:
     Jemima born 17 February 1840
     Catherine Denoon born 31 October 1841
     Ann Walker born 6 July 1843
     James Denoon born 12 March 1843

As previously reported (How Many Ways to Spell Zoe?) Jemima is counted with her parents in the 1841 Scotland Census, while Jemima and James junior are living with their stepmother for the 1861 England Census. Catherine died in 1866 (BMD Death Index Jun1866 Wandsworth 1d 312 Age: 24) and was buried at Battersea, St Mary 7th April 1866, her address given as 6 Milan Terrace, Bridge Road, Battersea. James junior married Jessie Stewart Robson at All Saints, Battlebridge (Islington) 30 October 1869, and moved back to Scotland according to census returns.

This much seems certain. A recent comment - thank you, CasparV, and I encourage leads like this - suggests James Denoon Young's mother as Catherine Dinoon. The LDS site show three children baptized by parents James Young and Catherine Dinoon, all at Canongate, Edinburgh (Scotland Births and Baptisms 1564-1950). They are:
     Mary         born 30 Nov 1809
     James        born 16 May 1811
     Catherine   born 11 Dec 1812

I have neither confirmed nor refuted the suggestion. In fact, it seems quite plausible. Dinoon/Denoon are likely variants of the same name, while James Denoon Young and his first wife Jemima Jessie Foggo named a daughter Catherine Denoon. On the other hand Dinoon and Denoon are different spellings, and, worse, James Denoon Young's documents all point to a birth in 1812-13, not May 1811. For me, the case is still open; I would like to see more documents.

My contributor also points to a marriage 1 August 1844 in Edinburgh between Jessie Sinclair Denoon Young and David Purdie Thomson. From trade directories I can see the husband was an MD who practiced in Wrenbury, Cheshire and Everton, Lancashire - his brother was a surgeon in Wrenbury. The wife is possibly James Denoon Young's sister, and would have born about 1820. Unfortunately no father's name is given. And I could find no age records for her.

She is not the first Jessie Sinclair Denoon who I've come across. The editor of the first Norwegian-language newspaper in the United States was James Denoon Reymert, father Christian Reymert (Norwegian) and mother Jessie Sinclair Denoon (Scottish). Although he grew up in Norway, as a young man in the 1830s, James Reymert studied in Edinburgh and lived with his uncle, a Rev James Young, according to his biographers. James Denoon Reymert could be James Denoon Young's first cousin - but this is currently all speculative.

In an effort to find the Rev. James Young, I restricted an ancestry search to the 1841 Scotland Census, with a birthdate around 1785, plus or minus 10 years. It's a long list of James Youngs, but within the top ten I found the following at Drummond Place, Edinburgh:
     Mrs. Ponsonby     25   Girl's Boarding School   Midlothian, Scotland
     Jossie Young        20                                       Scotland
     James Young        53    Clergyman                   Scotland
plus others, probably students, and certainly a female servant.

Jossie (Jessie?) might be James's daughter, and would even be the right age for the Jessie Sinclair Denoon Young of the marriage to David Purdie Thomson. But these 1841 census ages are unsually rounded down to the nearest 5 years, so Jossie could be anything from 20 to 24 years old on 6 June 1841. A place of birth given as Scotland, also implies not Midlothian, so Jossie (or Jessie) was not born in Edinburgh. I have no guarantee that this James Young is James Denoon Young's father. However, extending the search for Mrs. Ponsonby revealed the following (among others) for the 1851 Scotland Census at 6 Drummond Place, Edinburgh:
     Catherine Ponsonby   34   Private Boarding School
                                            and Authoress of Religious Works  Edinburgh, Midlothian
     Henry Ponsonby        17   Son, Scholar                                 Edinburgh, Midlothian
     Jemmia Young           11   Boarder, Scholar                           Perth, Perthshire
     Catherine Young         9    Boarder, Scholar                           Perth, Perthshire

Jemmia is likely a mis-transcription of Jemima, and, if so, Jemima and Catherine Young are the right ages and born in the right place to be the daughters of James Denoon Young and Jemima Jessie Foggo. In fact, it is unlikely that they could be anyone else. And this suggests a strong link between the Youngs and Mrs. Ponsonby, and high likelihood that the Rev James Young of the 1841 census is indeed my 4xgreat grandfather.

I used the LDS, to find records for Henry Ponsonby, born Edinburgh about 1834 to mother with first name Catherine and father with surname Ponsonby. Scotland Births and Baptisms 1564-1950 has Henry James Ponsonby, born 11 April 1832, baptized at St Cuthberts, Edinburgh. His parents are Adolphus Frederick Ponsonby and Catherine Young. Scotland Marriages 1561-1910 has the marriage of Adolphus Ponsonby and Catherine Young 2 May 1831 at St Cuthbert's, Edinburgh. The name of Catherine's father is James Young. From this, I would guess Catherine is the Rev. James's daughter, although Mrs. Catherine Ponsonby's year of birth calculated from the census is about 1816, and not the 1812 of the daughter of James Young and Catherine Dinoon.

Searching for Henry Ponsonby, born about 1832, shows a 9 year old in the household of Maria Young, age 30, Boarding School Teacher during the 1841 Scotland Census for Linlithgow. Is this the school of another daughter of the Rev. James Young?

Related to this, in a search for James Denoon Young, I found who appeared to be his son (of the same name) in the 1851 Scotland Census. The father, a widower, was staying in London at the time. The Peddie household at 6 Grove Street, Edinburgh St Cuthberts has the following:
     Robert A Peddie, 48, born in Stirling,
          "Manufacterer of Iron Wire Work Also Procurator In Sherriff
               And Lartice [Justice] Of Peace Courts Of Stirling
                   And Bengh [High] Court Of Do [ditto, i.e. Stirling]
                         But Not Practising"
     Maria D Peddie, 41, born in City, Edinr [Edinburgh]
          followed by their own four children, and then,
     James D Young, 5, born in Perth, "Son Of Brother In Law",
          which to anyone else would be a nephew.

Scotland Marriages 1561-1910 records the marriage of Robert Peddie and Maria Denoon Young on 13 April 1845 in Stirling. Although no father's name is given, this must be the same family as the 1851 census just reported above.

Later census returns for Robert Peddie concentrate on his iron manufacturing. He died between the 1881 and 1891 Scotland Censuses. Maria has one more census, the 1891 Scotland Census, now a widow, describing her occupation as "authoress and secretary". Her great opus, available to the likes of me thanks to googlebooks, is The Dawn of the Second Reformation in Spain: Being the Story of its Rise and Progress From the Year 1852 (London 1871). She was the Honorary Secretary of the Financial Committee for collecting funds for the Spanish Evangelization Society. From the perspective of the Society, Spain needed to be liberated from "popish superstition" to hear the "true gospel". Page 225 in the Appendix notes one of the movers behind the Society was a Dr. James Thomson. I wonder if he is David Purdie Thomson's father or brother.

As to the works of Catherine Ponsonby, "Authoress of Religious Works", I found a periodical, The Christian Family Advocate that appeared in the 1850s in at least five annual volumes. She was editor and major contributor, but another major contributor was the Rev. James Young, who I'm now presuming is her father, while articles on "Women in the Bible" and "The Cemetries [sic] of Liverpool" were written by David P Thompson M.D. This was very definitely a family affair! There is even reference to a Sunday School Hymn written by Ann Young - perhaps James Denoon Young's 12-year-old daughter. Alas! Those pages appear to be missing from the ebook.

Volume III, page 47 (published February 1854; it appears to be a monthly) has "A Practical Annotation on the 130th Psalm" by the Rev. James Young. The article is prefaced with something of a eulogy for him by Catherine Ponsonby, since the "pious and venerable author" had recently died. She writes how the Rev. Young on his deathbed asked repeatedly to hear this psalm, and how it gave him great comfort to hear it. We also learn from here that he wrote The Apocalypse Unveiled, recorded by googlebooks.
As a caution, the googlebooks oeuvre of Rev. James Young (of Edinburgh) includes at least one title I can confirm is by a different Rev. James Young. Life of J. Welsh... advertises a biographical sketch of the author, which on reading, shows this minister's dates as 1800-1865.

Confirmation of the father-daughter relationship between the Rev. James Young and Catherine Ponsonby comes from page 11 of Volume V (January 1856) of The Christian Family Advocate and Literary Review with this title:
                    The Slaying and the Resurrection of the Two Witnesses
                    Rev. xi. 7-11
                    by the late Rev. James Young,
                    author of "The Apocalypse Unveiled."
                    Edited by his daughter Catherine Ponsonby.

Also, I found two more possible sons to keep in mind, William and Charles Denoon Young. For a while they had an ironworks partnership, but it appears from bankruptcy proceedings that Charles speculated a little too much with his creditors' money and spent some time in debtors' prison. Their years of birth would be William 1813-1818 and Charles Denoon 1820. As well as their name, they have in common with James Denoon Young an interest in iron manufacture and sales. Without more evidence, I cannot confirm them as sons of the Rev. James Young.

From the above, I can give some of the family of the Rev. James Young as:
     Maria Denoon 1809/10
     James Denoon, born 1813
          possibly William, born 1813-1818
     Catherine born 1816
     Jessie Sinclair Denoon, born 1817-1821
          possibly Charles Denoon, born 1820

Although the names James and Catherine are correct, the years of birth require some explaining if they are the children of James Young and Catherine Dinoon recorded at Canongate, Edinburgh. Maria Denoon might be the same as Mary. So I am not sold on the suggestion, although I have not totally ruled it out. As always I'd be really grateful if someone could point me toward more evidence.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

All These Gentlemen

This post confirms the hypotheses made in Witnesses To A Wedding. I have received three birth certificates and two marriage certificates which I report here. The frequency of the reported occupation of Gentleman on these suggests some preoccupation with status. Just what it meant to be a gentleman, I'm not sure, but presumably it means some kind of occupation which pays fairly well, and doesn't involve getting one's hands dirty!

Charlotte Dunn is Charlotte Young (nee Taylor). Zoe Emmeline Payen Payne is Zoe Taylor, Charlotte's sister. And as I suspected, Euphemia Chamberlain Young is the daughter of James Denoon and Charlotte Young. Which suggests to me that all is not lost when census details are incorrect. In this case the inconsistencies were relationships to head of household and ages, although the names appeared to make sense. Conversely, however, I am less inclined to rely on census details if that is all I have.

Here is the information from the marriage certificates, first BMD Marriage Index Mar1864 St George Hanover Square 1a 387 for Zoe Emmeline Taylor/James Payne:
     Solemnized 12 March 1864 at the Parish Church of St George Hanover Square
     James Bertrand Payne, Full Age, Bachelor, Gentleman, of 44 Dover Road Fulham
          father: James Payne, Gentleman
     Zoe Emmeline Taylor, Full Age, Spinster, of 44 Dover Road Fulham
          father: William Taylor, Gentleman
         Walbanke Baker Barber
         Jane E Barber

I'm not sure of James Payne senior's occupation, but his son was a managing editor for the Moxon publishing house, of which more in the prior post. Zoe's father William Taylor, now deceased had been a solicitor.

As far as I can tell, no relation to our family, Walbanke Baker Barber was baptized 26 July 1826 at St Philips, Liverpool, son of Charles and Bell Barber, and died in Stoke Newington aged 49 on 17 September 1874. He was appointed Master Extraordinary in the High Court of Chancery (London Gazette Dec 1850), listed as an attorney (1851 Census), Solicitor's Managing Clerk (1861 Census). He married Alice Lloyd Little in 1863. Their marriage certificate shows his father was Charles Barber, artist. In fact, his father was Charles Vincent Barber, landscape artist and art teacher, who, with his brother Joseph Vincent Barber, founded an art academy which became the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists and Birmingham School of Art. At his death, Charles was president of the Liverpool Academy of Arts and had exhibited paintings at the Royal Academy in London. Walbanke's paternal grandfather was Joseph Barber, another prominent artist and member of the Birmingham School of landscape painters. Jane E Barber is Walbanke's older sister. Although the Barbers are not blood relations of Zoe, their witness signatures give some indication of the circles in which the Paynes and/or the Taylors moved. I am thinking here of Zoe's family ties to the legal profession, and James Bertrand Payne's literary and artistic connections.

And then BMD Marriage Jun1877 Kensington 1a 129 for Charlotte Young/Jabez Dunn:
     Solemnized 16 June 1877 at the Parish Church of Kensington
     Jabez Dunn, Full Age, Bachelor, Gentleman, of Lee Terrace Blackheath
          father: Richard William Samuel Dunn, Gentleman
     Charlotte Young, Full Age, Widow, of Brompton Road
          father: William Taylor, Gentleman
          James Bertrand Payen-Payne
          Herbert Playshed

Curiously, I can find no records pertaining to a Herbert Playshed, through either or Obviously James Bertrand Payen-Payne is Charlotte's brother-in-law.

Jabez Dunn, as noted previously (Witnesses to a Wedding), was possibly an attorney since his marriage bond gives him the honorific of "Esquire". His family was from Gillingham, Kent, his father a shipwright, although on the marriage certificate described as a gentleman. The 1861 England Census finds him with his brother Alfred James Dunn and a large number of single males (hospital, hostel?) in the Baynard Castle ward of London, and gives his occupation as "Warehouseman" - not quite an attorney! As luck would have it, I can find a partial transcript of his 1871 England Census in Lee, Lewisham, Kent (along with his mother, and some siblings) on the site, but no occupation. Frustratingly, I cannot find this return on Maybe the index entry is incorrect for this census return. I am not, however, vested enough in this family to browse through the returns of the six registration districts in Lee. If I did, I might expect to find an occupation closer to justifying his title of "esquire" and "gentleman".

The birth certificates I have just received are for the three daughters of my 3xgreat grandparents James Denoon Young and Charlotte (nee Taylor). In chronological order, the first of these is Zoe, my 2xgreat grandmother.
     BMD Birth Index Joe Davina Halton Young
                    ["Joe" is a 19th century transcription error]
                                   Dec1859 Lambeth 1d 406
     Born 2 October 1859 Vernon Cottage Stockwell Park Road
     [Z]oe Davina Halton, Girl
     James Denoon Young, Engineer
     Charlotte Young (formerly Taylor)
     Reported by Jas D Young, father, Vernon Cottage Stockwell Park Road
          11 November 1859

     BMD Birth Index Euphemia Chamberlain Young
                                   Dec1862 Upton upon Severn 6c 317
     Born 14 September 1862 Ripple
     Euphemia Chamberlain, Girl
     James Denoon Young, Gentleman
     Charlotte Young (formerly Taylor)
     reported by Charlotte Young, mother, Ripple
          14 October 1862

     BMD Birth Index Violet Young
                                   Mar1865 Wandsworth 1d 487
     Born 16 January 1865, 2 Harley Street
     Violet, Girl
     James Denoon Young, Civil Engineer
     Charlotte Young (formerly Taylor)
     Reported by Jas D Young, father, 2 Harley Street Battersea

When Charlotte reports Euphemia's birth, she reports her husband's occupation as Gentleman. In the two cases where the father is the informant, he signs Jas D Young, and reports his occupation (more modestly?) as Engineer. I wonder how important was the status of "Gentleman". His 1841 Scotland Census lists his occupation as Ironmonger, whereas his England Census return for 1851 has Iron Founder and Engineer. He held a couple of patents for improved production of iron, suggesting he had a deep knowledge of his trade. I suspect the family aspired to be loosely "gentlefolk". However the London Gazette contains several items pertaining to bankruptcy proceedings against James Denoon Young during the 1860s. When he died - I am beginning to think, a death certificate worth purchasing - the family was left with no income, as we will see.

The 1871 England Census shows the family somewhat dispersed. Of the girls, I find Violet with her mother in lodgings, Euphemia a visitor in another household, Zoe with the Hanrotts (later to be adopted, it appears). Of the boys, Haydon might be recorded at 6 Vigo Street, Westminster in the household of Benjamin Criddle, while Lonsdale is most certainly a pupil at Christ's Hospital School, Christchurch, London, otherwise known as the Bluecoat School on account of their distinctive uniform.

Charles Dickens, Junior wrote of this school, founded in the reign of Edward VI to provide education for poor orphaned Londoners:

Presentations to Christ Hospital can only be obtained from governors under certain regulations. It is generally understood that the principal requirements are, briefly, that children must be presented when between eight and ten years of age, and must be free from active disease, as well as from any physical defect which would render them unable to take care of themselves; that their parents (if one or both be living) have not adequate means of educating and maintaining them; and that the children have not such means of their own. A written statement, showing the amount, or average amount, of the parental income with particulars of its source or sources, the total number of children in the family, and how many of these are still young and dependent, and any other relevant circumstances, is in each case required to be made in the petition...

Christ's Hospital school still exists although its campus has moved to Horsham, Sussex. It is still an independent boarding school with a mission to provide educational opportunities to families in need. Through their website I enquired of their archives. Almost immediately, a volunteer responded to confirm Lonsdale Denoon Young's enrollment at the school. A week or so later, the same volunteer sent me information on Lonsdale's family in the possession of the school. Most of this confirmed what I had already discovered, but there are two fascinating items. The first on Lonsdale's application, made shortly after his father's death, Charlotte wrote that she was:

a widow without income and having five children totally unprovided for; that her husband who was a civil engineer and contractor has died in the present month of April only, and consequently at this time she can hardly see where or how to provide for the education of her children, the eldest being only in his 14th year

The school register shows Lonsdale's admission in 1868 at the top of page 291 left-hand page, and his discharge in 1873 on the right-hand page opposite. Sir William Anderson Rose was the presenting governor of the school through whom Charlotte made her petition. He was an Alderman of the City of London at the time, sometime Lord Mayor of London. There is no evidence that he knew the family.

18th March 1868 Clothed 14 May 1868 Lonsdale Denoon Young Son of James Denoon Young deceased born 18th May 1858 admitted from St Stephen South Lambeth, Surrey.
Sir William Anderson Rose Knight (?) Aldm

1873 July 17th Lonsdale Denoon Young discharged by his brother Mr. Heydon Charles Young of No.12 Pelham Street Brompton on behalf of his Mother Mrs. Charlotte Young, Widow, residing at the same place.
[signed] H.C. Young

Of the brothers I have no more record after 1873. Presumably they emigrated or otherwise escaped documentation before they died. They are not listed in the BMD Death Index, which suggests they did not die in England and Wales. A google search showed an genealogy of unknown source suggesting Lonsdale Denoon Young died in 1879. Prompted by this I made an search among a wider variety of death records which offered a gravesite on the Isandlwana battlefield in South Africa of one Lieutenant L. D. Young of the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Regiment of the Native Natal Contingent. For those not conversant with British military history, the Battle of Isandlwana 22 January 1879 was a British disaster during the Anglo-Zulu War, depicted in the movie Zulu Dawn, in which a little over a thousand-strong detachment of British and Colonial soldiers was overrun and destroyed by a much larger Zulu army. The Native Natal Contingent was raised from indigenous Africans and officered by Europeans, although the white settlers didn't trust black Africans with firearms, so they were equipped mostly with spears.

I am particularly interested in this suggestion, since in all the years 1837 to 1863 there are very few L Youngs recorded in the BMD Birth Index. There are 11 L (and not D, that is, with some other middle initial) Youngs, who can be ruled out; 36 L Youngs (a few of whom might have had a D for a middle initial); and only 2 L D Youngs. One of these is Leonard Douglas Young (no relation) for whom I can find a census return for 1891 and thus rule out; the other is Lonsdale Denoon Young. Now, the dead officer at Isandlwana might have been born before 1837 (when the Index begins), or he may have been born outside England and Wales (which is its coverage), but, all the same, it seems worthwhile to look for more evidence. The National Archives in Kew has the WO12 series of muster rolls which claims to cover colonial units up to 1878, but it's not clear that this must include the Natal Native Contingent. Otherwise I do not know where I could search for the name of the lieutenant buried on the Isandlwana battlefield in South Africa. I would like to rule him in or out as our Lonsdale Denoon Young.

Next up, some more about James Denoon Young, Lonsdale's father, and my 3xgreat grandfather...