Miscellaneous family and research information

Today I moved 367 records of people from one genealogical program to another. Most of them were in material sent by cousins, quite a lot relating to the Nipper and Benoke families (descended from William and Ann Allen of Winscombe, Somerset). I hope to have a kind of consolidated pool of information about the descendants of William and Ann Allen to share with any members of the family who are interested. There are some related families about which we have very little information — Purnell and Hill, for example.

There was also some information sent by Diana Richter on the Beningfield and Grice families of Durban.

The other day I met John Sutherland of Australia, who was looking for his grandfather Robert Sutherland, some of whose children were born in Pilgrim’s Rest. I showed him how to look in the archives, but unfortunately there wasn’t much. There was a cryptic reference to a Robert Sutherland who had died in Mozambique, but not enough information to show that he was related.

We’re still having bandwidth problems, so if anyone writes e-mails and they bounce, try again at the end of the month, in case we’ve run out of bandwidth. In the mean time I’ll try to be sparing about looking at other people’s blogs and web pages, to try to make the e-mail last until the end of the month.

Benoke family – Allen descendants

June Murphy has just sent me a lot of information on the family of her great grandfather Hooper Scott Benoke, and from it I’ve been able to to work out that June and I are 5th cousins, and we are both descended from William and Ann Allen of Winscombe, Somerset.

The Allen family seems to have been quite prolific. At various times I’ve discovered mysterious cousins staying with Hayes relatives in censuses in Bristol, and have gradually been tracking them down, and most have turned out to be Allen descendants. Some of the surnames of descendants are Hayes, Williams, Hill, Purnell, Nipper, Benoke and there are probably many more to be discovered.

Allen, Williams, Benoke, and Nipper families of Somerset

June Murphy replied to a query I had left on the RootsWeb message boards, about the Allen, Williams, Benoke and Nipper families of Somerset. She is descended from Hooper Scott Benoke, who was staying with his grandfather Giles Williams in the 1861 census.

June also left a message in our message forum (see sidebar), that Hooper Scott Benoke is her great grandfather, and descended from Ann Williams. She notes that he was married three times, and I only had information about one of his marriages, to Louisa Nipper, who I suspected may have been related to Joseph Nipper and Mary Williams. June confirmed that Louisa was their daughter, and so first cousin to Hooper Scott Benoke, as their mothers were sisters. So now I’m hoping to hear more from June on Hooper Scott Benoke’s other marriages, and his descendants.

My great great grandmother was Rachel Allen of Winscombe, Somerset, who married Simon Hayes or Hays. Rachel’s sister Hannah married Giles Williams, hence the link between the families. Giles Williams and Hannah Allen had four children, one of whom died young. Hannah appears to have been dead before 1834, though i have not found a record of her death or burial. In 1834 Giles Williams married Sidonia Sweet.

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