Crowle families – Vause, Brunyee, Isle, Ellis

Yesterday I continued looking at the microfilm of the Crowle parish registers, and found more records referring to the Vause, Ellis, Brunyee and Isle families.

My interest was mainly in my ggg-grandparents, John Vause and his wife Eleanor Wyatt, who appear to have moved there from Thorninghurst Farm in the Thorne-Fishlake area of Yorkshire some time in the 1930s, Their last child, Samuel Wyatt Vause, was born there about 1840, and he and his mother died shortly thereafter. John Vause was an innkeeper in Crowle, and seems to have lived there until his death in 1863.

In 1842 John & Eleanor Vause’s daughter Fanny married a local surgeon, Phineas Samuel Ellis. P.S. Ellis’s brother Henry also seems to have lived in Crowle.

In 1856 their son John Vause also married an Eleanor (which caused the confusion when I found the baptism of their children, mentioned in an earlier message below). He married Eleanor Isle, whose father Thomas Isle was also apparently an innkeeper. So I went back in the microfilm to look for more information on the Isle family, which I had not been looking for previously.

The Brunyee family apparently came from Epworth, a little South of Crowle (and famous as the birthplace of John and Charles Wesley, the founders of Methodism), and the Vause family had also lived there earlier, and one of the Vauses had married a Brunyee, hence the interest. Most of my information about the Brynyee family comes from Wendy Castree of Queensland, Australia — we were in touch on one of the Fidonet genealogy conferences about 10 years ago, but with the decline in BBS networks we lost touch.

Strange anomalies in VAUSE family records

Yesterday I was going through the baptism registers of Crowle, Lincolnshire when I came across three baptisms for the VAUSE family on the same day.

They were children of John and Eleanor Vause, who were my ggg grandparents, and I was quite gobsmacked to find them.

Here are the baptisms, together with the baptism of my great great grandfather, who was the eldest child of John and Eleanor Vause.

Vause, Alice Elinor
Bapt: 2-Jan-1860 ENG, LIN, Crowle
Father: Vause, John
Mother: Vause, Elinor
Occupation: Hotel keeper
Abode: Crowle

Vause, Charles Henry
Bapt: 2-Jan-1860 ENG, LIN, Crowle
Father: Vause, John
Mother: Vause, Elinor
Occupation: Hotel keeper
Abode: Crowle

Vause, Emily Sarah
Bapt: 2-Jan-1860 ENG, LIN, Crowle
Father: Vause, John
Mother: Vause, Eleanor
Occupation: Hotel keeper
Abode: Crowle

Vause, Richard
Bapt: 28-May-1822 England, Yorkshire, Kingston on
Hull, Holy Trinity
Father: Vause, John
Mother: Vause, Eleanor
Occupation: Maltster
Abode: Myton

The first thing that strikes one, of course, is that the last three to be baptised were baptised nearly 40 years after the first one. I’m pretty certain they weren’t triplets born late, because Eleanor Vause, the mother, had been dead for nearly 20 years. She was buried in Crowle shortly after the baptism of her youngest child Samuel Wyatt Vause (spelt Vuse in the baptism register) who was baptised in Crowle on 14 Feb 1840 (their other children were baptised in Thorne, Fishlake and Hull).

The two possibilities that immediately struck me, of course, was that this must either be a different John and Eleanor Vause, or that these were late baptisms, which means that the three children baptised in 1860 must have been in their twenties, at least.

I’m pretty certain that the parents were not a different set. John Vause appears as an innkeeper in the 1861 census, with his unmarried daughter Betsey. Another daughter, Fanny, was married to a surgeon Phineas Samuel Ellis (and their younger children were baptised at Crowle in the 1850s), and Betsey was living with them in the 1881 census (John Vause, the inkeeper, died in 1863). The eldest son, Richard Vause, published an announcement of the death of his father John Vause of Crowle in the Natal Mercury in 1863.

So the only other possibility, unless I’m missing something, is that these three children had somehow not been baptised before, and were baptised in their 20s in Crowle.

But they do not seem to have been mentioned in any other family or other records. This is the first I have heard of them, after 30 years of research into the family.

I can think of two possibilities that might account for this:

1. They had died in infancy
2. That they were mentally defective, and the family didn’t mention them

The first seems unlikely, unless the Church of England Vicar of Crowle had secretly absorbed Mormon theology and was baptising for the dead.

The second is possible, and perhaps they were baptised when they were visiting the family from an asylum somewhere.

I suppose the next thing would be to examine the 1851 and 1841 censuses of Crowle to see if there is any mention of them — any other suggestions? If you have suggestions, click on COMMENTS below.

Green – Wilson – Francis – Thwaites

Jenny Marsh writes:

… found this info amongst Glorias letters. “Agnes Thwaites,
admitted to Adelaide Hospital 2/4/1880 of Gawler, 44 yrs married C/E , born
Nova Scotia. Arrived in the colony aboard the Countess of Harborough.”

Every little bit helps, and that’s quite a few bits. At least it gives the name of a ship to look for. Though it may not be the one she went from the Cape Colony on, but perhaps the Countess of Harborough only took her to Adelaide from Sydney.

In looking for that, I found a reference to Alfred John Dawson Francis (her second husband) going insolvent in 1860 in an NSW archives index. He was described as a miner and storeman at Dwyer’s Creek. But the only Dwyer’s Creek I could find was in South Western Victoria, and presumably quite a long way from Moruya.

Any comments on this?

Just click on the COMMENTS at the bottom of this posting.

Hickman family of Durban and Old Swinford

We had a couple of e-mails from Michael Hickman giving updates on his branch of the family, and he has a web page on the Hickman family.

Michael’s children John-Michael and Sebastian Richard were abducted to Germany in 1995..

Michael Hickman is Val’s 5th cousin on the Crighton -> Flamme side.

Much of the basic research on the Hickman family in South Africa was done by Ron Hickman, who visited us in 1987 to exchange notes on the family. Ron made a great hit with our youngest son Jethro, who is car mad, and Ron designed Lotus sports cars.

Green, Francis, Battye, Cowley

A fat book arrived from Bob Cowley in Australia today — “Addendum 1” to his Soldiers, surveyors and selectors, which he compiled about 10 years ago, to which this was an update.

Quite a lot of it deals with Margaret Agnes Anne Green, and he’s managed to collect a fair bit more on her brother Alfred, who also went to Australia, and on Alfred’s wife Henrietta Goote, including the rather interesting information that she was born in Smyrna, Turkey. He also has death dates for many of Alfred and Henrietta’s children.

Included in the package was a copy of the Canberra Historical Journal for September 2005, which has an article by Bob Cowley himself on Margaret Agnes Anne Green, concentrating on her role as a pioneer educationist in Queanbeyan, “The Queanbeyan teacher who was unlucky in love”. And so she was. Her first husband, William Wilson, drowned in the Tuross River. She next married Alfred John Dawson Francis, who committed suicide. Her third marriage, to Walter William Thwaites, was bigamous, so she married him again a few years later.

Bob Cowley has a theory that Alfred John Dawson Francis was not actually the father of their fourth child, Louisa Francis. She was born eight months after his suicide in Sydney, and for the preceding four months he had lived apart from his family in Moruya. Louisa was adopted at the age of 18 months by Captain E.M. Battye, who had known the Green family in the Cape Colony and Canada, and Bob is investigating to see whether he could have been Louisa’s real father.

In the mean time I’ve been trying to find a record of her marriage to William Wilson in the Cape. No luck so far, at least not in Grahamstown Cathedral in the 1850s, where her brothers Edward and Arthur Green were married. Perhaps she eloped, and married under a different name.

Cottam marriages in Lancaster

I spent some time yesterday at the Mormon Family History Centre in Johannesburg transcribing COTTAM marriage records from St Mary’s, Lancaster.

Here’s what I found so far.

Cottam, Adam Page, Ann 6-Oct-1841
Cottam, Richard Bagot, Margaret 2-Aug-1835
Cottam, Robert McNeal, Jane 20-Dec-1820
Cottam, Thomas Newton, Jane 4-Feb-1822
Cottam, William Heaves, Sarah 2-Jul-1839
Smith, James Cottam, Alice 5-Feb-1822

There seemed to be quite a lot around 1820, but very few after that.

The Richard COTTAM who married Margaret BAGOT was my great great great grandfather.

Technorati tags: Cottam genealogy

Growden, Pope and Dyer

My great great grandfather, Matthew Growden, married Christiana Pope, born Dyer, in Cornwall in the 1840s.

From various censuses it seems she had three children (at least) before she married him, and they were said to have been born in Tintagel – James Dyer, Thomas Pope and Philippa Pope.

So today I went to the Mormon family history centre and scrolled through microfilms of the Tintagel baptism register. But there was no sign of any of them.

Mail problem solved

Last night I sent a message to recent correspondents to say that there were problems with mail at my address, and gave alternative addresses to use.

It seems that Durham University’s servers went down over the weekend, but no mail seems to have been lost, just delayed.

So this is to let you know my e-mail addresses, in order of preference (to keep in your address book):


Mail sent to (1) is forwarded to (4), but it is better to keep the address at (1) in your address book, because the address at (4) could change if I change ISPs, but Durham University has been around longer than Yahoo, Google or Telkom, so address (1) is less likely to change.

Thanks for your patience with the delays.

King, Mocine and Blum families

Andy and Linda Blum recently visited the King family in Texas, and Andy sent us these photos.

Here are Jennifer and Jean King, and Jean’s mother Katharine Mocine, and Andy Blum.

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And Katharine Mocine with Linda and Andy Blum.

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Andy, Jean and Jennifer are descended from Edward Lister Green and Emily Ogilvie, who were married in Grahamstown, Cape Colony, in 1854, and subsequently settled in New Zealand.

Technorati tags: Green family , ,

E-mail problems

There seem to be problems with the mail server at Durham University, and e-mail sent to my address at does not seem to be getting through.

If you have sent mail to me recently and have not had a reply, please resend to one of my alternative e-mail addresses:


I have been unable to contact the Durham University servers at or, but I don’t think they will be down permanently, but in the meantime please send copies of important mail to one or other of the alternative addresses.

For updates see blogs at: