Blackhurst the News – Sales by Mr. George Taylor

Montran-Barber-Blackhurst Line
Transcription & Comment by Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.“In the News” is my reporting of newspapers articles and obituaries regarding ancestors and other relatives I am researching. The information found in newspapers often raises more questions and research areas but invariably provides fresh texture to understanding an ancestor’s life.

Today’s article reports an event in the life of my 3rd Great-Grandfather, Stephen Blackhurst.


From the Sheffield and Rotherham Independent newspaper (Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England) dated 20 Nov 1847 is an ad; “Sales by Mr. George Taylor.”

“Sales by Mr. George Taylor.”

Norfolk Sales Rooms, George street.

Mr. GEORGE TAYLOR has received instructions from Mr. Stephen Blackhurst, to sell by auction, on Monday, Nov. 22nd, 1847, at his Garden, Far Field, near Hill Foot Bridge, the entire of his far famed and expensive collection of PRIZE GOOSEBERRY TREES, &c. For Particulars see Posting Bills.

Otaheite gooseberry
Gooseberries – Photo by Abhishek Jacob via Wikipedia

Comment

Stephen Blackhurst’s father (Stephen Blackhurst (1777-1847) died the previous March. Stephen and his wife Fanny Taylor immigrated to the United States in 1847-48. So, Stephen was selling his prize gooseberry tree collection in preparation for moving to the States.

I Learned

    • In 1847, Stephen Blackhurst (1801-1869) had a garden at Far Field, near Hill Foot Bridge, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England.
    • In 1847, Stephen Blackhurst (1801-1869) had an interest in Gooseberry Trees.

Further Research

Was George Taylor, who sold the gooseberry trees for Stephen, a close relative to Fanny Taylor, Stephen’s Wife?

Blackhurst the News — The Driving of Carrier’s Drays

Montran-Barber-Blackhurst Line
Transcription & Comments by Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.“In the News” is my reporting of newspapers articles and obituaries regarding ancestors and other relatives I am researching. The information found in newspapers often raises more questions and research areas but invariably provides fresh texture to understanding an ancestor’s life.

Today’s article reports an event in the life of my 4th great-grandfather, Stephen Blackhurst (c.1777-1847). The article is from the Sheffield and Rotherham Independent (Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England), dated 13 March 1847, Page 3, Column 3 reportsThe Driving of Carriers’ Drays.”

[Transcription by Don Taylor]


The Driving of Carrier’s Drays.

On Tuesday, an inquest was held at the Infirmary, on
view of the body of Mr. Stephen Blackhurst, of Chapel street, Bridgehouses, shoemaker, aged 70. The deceased was the father of Mr. John Blackhurst, whose name is familiar to our readers. It appeared from the evidence of two youths, named John Goddard and Thos. Wadsworth, that on the previous Wednesday night, a little after eight o’clock, they were standing in Love street, when they saw
a man coming round the comer from Love lane. A carrier’s cart was coming in the direction from Spring street, the driver being in front with the reins in his hand, and the horse trotting sharply. The cart turned the comer into Love lane very quickly, and the shaft came in contact with the man, (the deceased,) who appeared to be upon the cause-
way, and knocked him down into the road, the right wheel of the cart passing over him. The cart went on without stopping, and the two youths ran to the man’s assistance. He appeared quite sensible, and in answer to the question whether he was hurt, replied that the cart Lad run over his body, and his leg was broken. Wadsworth, with the assistance of another person, carried him to the Blue Pig, in Spring street, from whence he was immediately removed in a cab to the Infirmary. Goddard ran after the cart, which belonged to Messrs. Newcombe, Chaplin, Home,
and Co., and called to the driver, Thomas Ellis, that he had run over a man and broke his leg. Ellis, without pulling up, replied that he had not seen any man and had not time to stop. Goddard continued running after the cart, and urged upon the man that he ought to stop and look after the person he had run over. He took no notice, and Goddard continued running after him down tire Wicker. When near the Railway station, Ellis urged his horse to increased speed, passed two cabs and another dray, and
Goddard being unable to keep up, lost sight of him. The corner where the accident occurred, it appeared, was very
dark, the causeway and the lane also being very narrow.
Both the witnesses were of opinion, that the occurrence
was purely an accident, and that the driver did not see the
deceased. They, however, spoke with equal distinctness to
the fact of his going at an improper speed, the horse
trotting sharply round the comer, the wheel of the cart
passing close to the edge of the causeway, and only just
avoiding a post, which is placed at the comer… .Mr. Law,
the house surgeon, described the injuries received as a
fracture of the right leg, and an extensive wound in the
thigh. Two days after his admission, there was also ex-
tensive discolouration of the lower part of the abdomen.
He died on Monday, from the great shock which the system
had sustained from the injuries received. He stated to
Mr. Law, that it was entirely an accident, but the driver
was going at too rapid a rate when it occurred, and went
on without taking any notice when called to… .Thomas
Ellis, the driver of the cart, made a voluntary statement,
after the usual caution, to the effect that it was very dark,
and he did not see any man as he turned the corner, or
know at the time that any person was injured; that his
horse was not trotting as stated, but going at a walking
pace. He saw two youths in Love street, as he turned
into Love lane. He admitted that one of them ran after
him half-way on the lane, and said he had run over a man,
and he replied that he had not seen one. The lad asked
him to go back, but he did not, as he thought the whole story
was an hoax. The comer is a dangerous one. He denied that
his horse trotted at all, and said he had a load weighing
near a ton in the cart at the time. He was riding on the
proper side of the cart and had the reins in his hand       
Mr. U. Peace, agent for Messrs. Newcombe, Chaplin,
Home, and Co., stated that Ellis had been in their employ
about nine months. For many years previous to that, he
was in the service of Mrs. Lister. He was a very steady
and sober man. In answer to some remarks of the Coroner,
as to the improper speed at which the carriers’ carts fre-
quently were driven at night, he explained that the gates at
the Railway station were closed every night at half-past
eight, and whatever goods were not in by that time had to
remain a whole day before they were sent away. Many of
the manufacturers and merchants would tell the porters
that they must drive it as late as possible, perhaps tenminutes or a quarter-past eight before they called for packages. Perhaps there might be three or four such every night, some a very wide distance from each other. They (the carriers) must oblige their customers, and were compelled to do tins or lose their custom. The consequence was, that
the men must trot their horses from these places

to the station to get there in time…..The Coroner said,
this could be no excuse for placing the lives of persons in
danger…. Mr. Peace admitted the great extent of the evil
complained, and said his only surprise was, when he
saw the manner in which the carts were trotted down the
Wicker, that a great many more accidents did not occur ..
The Coroner, in summing up the evidence, laid down the
law as applicable to the case, that any driver of a vehicle
occasioning the death of any individual, if he had not used
due care and circumspection, was guilty of manslaughter.
The greatest possible care could perhaps not strictly be
expected, but a person seeking to avail himself of the
excuse that he had used proper care, ought at least to shew
that he took as much care as persons under similar cir-
cumstances usually do. It often happened, that with carts
it was extremely difficult, if not impossible, to pull up on
the instant; the greater therefore was the caution required;
and a driver going at an unusual speed, causing the death
of another as he had stated, was held to be guilty of man-
slaughter. He in strong language condemned the exceed-
ingly improper speed at which the carriers’ carts were
frequently driven at nights, through the streets, and more
particularly down the Wicker and the approaches to the
railway stations. He also expressed his indignation at the
want of the common feeling of humanity shewn by Ellis,
in not stopping, as he was in duty bound, after being
informed of the accident. It was for the Jury to say from
the evidence, whether they thought the occurrence was
purely an accident, or whether the having driven at an im-
proper rate round so dangerous and dark a corner, the
driver was guilty of manslaughter….. Some conversation
followed among the Jury, and considerable difference of
opinion appeared to exist, as to the possibility of the de-
ceased being upon the edge of the causeway at the time
the accident happened.. .Mr. Blackhurst asked permission
to repeat a conversation he had with his father before his
death, in respect to the accident. He expressed with con-
siderable feeling, that deeply as he deplored the death of
his father, he could not in justice to the driver, but state
his father’s explanation of the manner in which the accident
occurred. He (deceased) was returning from St. George’s
church, and after calling at two places in Westbar, in the
expectation of meeting with him (Mr. Blackhurst,) had
gone down Workhouse lane on his way home. He passed
along Love street, and was crossing the end of Love lane,
when the cart came up and knocked him down; the horse
trod upon his leg and broke it, and the wheel of the cart
passed over his body. His father was remarkable for great
presence of mind at all times, and repeated to him three
times in the presence of others, “I believe it was an acci-
dent, but the man was driving too fast.” It would appear
that he was crossing the road, and not on the causeway as
the witnesses had stated. He must, however, state that the
reason which Ellis alleged of thinking it a hoax when the
lad called to him to stop, appeared to have been an inven-
tion of his, for when he (Mr. Blackhurst) went three days
after the accident with a policeman to the railway station,
he made no mention of it until after a good deal of con-
versation…. Mr. Law said the deceased had given precisely
the same account of the accident to him which he gave to
his son…. Wadsworth and Goddard were re called, and
explained that they had not observed the deceased until
the horse was close upon him, and then he appeared to be
upon the edge of the causeway, or close to it…. The Jury
returned a verdict of Accidental Death. They however,
strongly condemned the want of feeling shewn by the driver,
in not stopping when told of the accident. They also ex-
pressed their hope that the drivers of carriers’ drays and
carts, going to the railway stations, would not drive at the
rapid rate which they were so so much in the habit of
doing… .Ellis was, at the close of the enquiry, called into
the room, and the terms of the verdict were communicated
to him. He was cautioned by the Coroner that he had
had a very narrow escape of being sent to York for man-
slaughter, and that escape was entirely owing to impartial
and conscientious feeling shewn by the relatives of the
deceased… The Jury, after having requested the coroner to
make a representation to the Lighting Committee, that a
lamp ought to be placed at the corner where the accident
happened, separated.. ..We are glad to learn that Mr. Peace,
agent of Messrs. Newcombe and Co., has spontaneously
communicated to the friends of the deceased, the willing-
ness of the company to defray the expenses of the funeral.


What I Learned

  • The accident occurred on 3 March at the corner of Love Lane and Spring Street (“previous Wednesday night.”)
  • Inquest into Stephen Blackhurst’s death was held on 9 March. (“last Tuesday”)
  • The cart’s right wheel ran over Stephen, and the horse stepped on and broke his leg.
  • The driver was Thomas Ellis, a driver for Messrs. Newcombe, Chaplin, Horne, & Co. He was going fast to get to the Railway station before it closed its gates.
  • Stephen Blackhurst believed it was an accident, but the driver was driving too fast.”
  • The verdict was “Accidental Death.”
  • Messr. Newcombe and Co. would defray the expenses of the funeral.

Further Research

  • John Blackhurst in Newspapers – “The deceased was the father of Mr. John Blackhurst, whose name is familiar to our readers.”
  • St. George’s Church – The deceased was returning from St. George’s Church. (He was likely a member.)

Blackhurst the News – Sheffield General Infirmary, March 5 [1847]

Montran-Barber-Blackhurst Line

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.“In the News” is my reporting of newspapers articles and obituaries regarding ancestors and other relatives I am researching. The information found in newspapers often raises more questions and more research areas but invariably provides fresh texture to understanding an ancestor’s life.

Today’s article reports an event in the life of my 4th Great-grandfather, Stephen Blackhurst.

Article

This week’s article from the Sheffield and Rotherham Independent (Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England) newspaper[i] dated 6 Mar 1847. It reports events at the Sheffield General Infirmary during the previous week.

Sheffield and Rotherham Independent  newspaper dated 6 Mar 1847, via Newspapers.com

SHEFFIELD GENERAL INFIRMARY, March 5

In-Patients….
Out-Patients….
Casualties received into the House since last Friday….
…Stephen Blackhurst, Bridge; houses, shoemaker, fractured leg; George Milnes….

Discovered

I learned that Stephen Blackhurst lived at Bridge. (I need to know more about what that means.)

I also learned he fractured his leg between 27 February and 5 March and was admitted to the Sheffield Infirmary. That is significant as I know from other things that Stephen died on 8 March at the Sheffield Infirmary.[ii]


Endnotes

[i] Thanks to Newspapers.com.

[ii] England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007, Family Search, Stephen Blackhurst – 1847. “England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2JMT-SSC : 31 December 2014), Stephen Blackhurst, 1847; from “England & Wales Deaths, 1837-2006,” database, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : 2012); citing Death, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England, General Register Office, Southport, England.

Stephen Blackhurst (c. 1779-1847)

Brown/Montran/Barber/Blackhurst
By Don Taylor

UPDATED 25 April 2019

During the NERGC conference in Manchester, NH, one of the speakers talked about “Circles in Family Tree Citations.” That is to say, a fact in a person’s tree is based upon another tree, and that tree is based upon another tree, and that tree is based upon another tree and so forth until that first tree is the source for the last tree. I find it even more disturbing when several of the trees cite another record as a second source and that record conflicts with the cited fact.

According to over a dozen trees I found on Ancestry and elsewhere, Stephen Blackhurst was born 26 December 1775 in Derbyshire, England. All of these trees cite another Ancestry Family Tree as their source. Several of those trees do cite the 1841 England Census which indicates that Stephen Blackhurst was 60 years old in 1841, suggesting his birth in 1781; however they still cling to the 1775 birthdate.  Even Family Search’s Family Tree indicates the 1775 date and cites the 1841 Census as the source and a person’s Ancestry Tree as the as a reason for the I’ve emailed a couple of the individuals to see if they might have a more definitive source but all have either responded with “don’t know, it’s from another person’s tree” or had no response.

Brown Research 2019 – Ancestor #124

List of Grandparents

Birth

The 1841 England Census indicates that Stephen Blackhurst was 60-years-old at census time.  That suggests his birth year was 1780 or 1781. It appears he was born in Derby in Derbyshire as it was the location for his marriage and the christening of several of his children. Also, the 1841 census indicates he was not born in Yorkshire.

His death register entry indicates that he was 70 years old when he died on 8 March 1847 suggesting a birth of 1776 or 1777.  So, I really don’t know when he was born but am confident it was between 1776 and 1781, so I’ll use “circa. 1779” until I find a better record. 

I know nothing about his childhood, but across the Atlantic in 1781, Cornwallis surrendered to George Washington at Yorktown and England had a period of relative peace. It wasn’t until after his marriage that the Napoleonic Wars kicked into full gear.

Marriage

Image of St. Peter's Church
St. Peter’s Church, Derby, where Stephen and Lydia were married in 1802. (Photo by Jerry Evans)

On 14 June 1802, Stephen married Lydia Ellen Cockram at the Church of St. Peter in Derby, Derbyshire by N Baylor, the vicar of Saint Michaels, Derby. The witnesses were Geo Tunnecht and Rebecca Bull. St. Peter is still standing. The church building dates back to the 11th century and is now over 950 years old.

Marriage Registration: Stephen Blackhurst & Lydia Cockram – Source: Derbyshire England, Church of England Marriages and Banns 1754-1932 – (Via Ancestry)

Adult

Stephen and Lydia had nine children.

Name Birth Death
Stephen 1803 in Derby 1869
Eliza 1805 in Derby 1806*[1]
Mary 1806 in Sheffield 1877*
Matthew 1811 1846
Francis 1812 1820*
William 1816 1880*
John 1817 1844*
Adamson 1819 1901*
Lydia Ellen 1921 1894*

In July 1806, the first daughter of Stephen and Lydia died.

In 1820*, their 8-year-old son, Francis died.

On 5 May 1827*, Stephen’s wife Lydia Ellen (Cockram) Blackhurst died in Sheffield, Yorkshire, England.

In 1833, Stephen had a shoe maker’s shop at the Old Workhouse in Pitsmoor (Sheffield).

In 1839, Stephen was a boot and shoemaker at 57 Pye Bank in Sheffield.

The 1841 Census indicates that Stephen is a 60-year-old shoemaker living at Pye Bank in Sheffield, Yorkshire, England. The Census notes that he was not born in the county, but all the others in the household were.[2] Living with him are:

  •       Matthew – Age 30     Shoemaker
  •       Mary – Age 30            Dressmaker[3]
  •       William – Age 25       Shoemaker[4]
  •       Ellen – Age 20
  •       John – Age 21             (Table? ????? Maker?)[5]
1841 England Census showing the household of Stephen Blackhurst (Via Ancestry.Com)

In 1844*, Stephen’s son John died at the age of 27.

In 1846*, Stephen’s son Matthew died at the age of 35.

In 1847 Stephen was a shoemaker at 24 Chapel St., Bridge houses.

Death

Stephen Blackhurst died on the 8th of March 1847. in Sheffield, Yorkshire, England.[6] About five days before his death, he was mortally injured when a cart ran over him. He was 70 years old. 

Crop (portion) of Stephen Blackhurst’s Death Register entry.

Obituary

Stephen Blackhurst was born about 1780, probably in Derby, Derbyshire, England. He was preceded in death by his wife, the former Lydia Ellen Cockram, three sons, and a daughter. He was survived by three sons; Stephen, William, and Adamson and two daughters, Mary and Lydia Ellen.

Events by Location

Derby, Derbyshire, England       1780-1805     Birth, Marriage, Birth of two children – 25 years.

Sheffield, Yorkshire, England     1806-1847     Birth of seven children, Death – 41 years.

Further Actions / Follow-up

  • Confirm Birth, Marriage, and Death information for Stephen’s wife Lydia and all of his children.


Sources

  • 1841 England Census, Ancestry.com, Stephen Blackhurst (Sr.) – Sheffield Parish, Stattforth & Tickhill, Yorkshire, England. Class: HO107; Piece: 1329; Book: 3; Civil Parish: Sheffield; County: Yorkshire; Enumeration District: 9; Folio: 40; Page: 4; Line: 8; GSU roll: 46427
  • City Directory (A), Ancestry.com, 1841 – Sheffield, England – Page 324 – Blackhurst – 57 Pye Bank. 1841 Pigot & Co’s Royal National and Commercial Directory; Publisher: J. Pigot & Co.
  • City Directory (A), Ancestry.com, 1847 – Sheffield, England – Sheffield and its Vicinity, Page 3 – Boot and Shoe Makers – Blackhurst – 24 Chapel St, Bridge-houses. 1847 Slater’s Directories of Important English Towns; Publisher: Isaac Slater.
  • City Directory (UL) (Various), University of Leicester, http://specialcollections.le.ac.uk/digital/collection/p16445coll4, 1839 – Birmingham and Sheffield
    • Page 28 – Blackhurst, Eliza
    • Page 210 – Blackhurst, Eliza
    • Page 219 – Blackhurst, Eliza
    • Page 721 – Blackhurst, Steph
    • Page 772 – Blackhurst, Stephen
  • England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007, Family Search, Stephen Blackhurst – 1847. “England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2JMT-SSC : 31 December 2014), citing Death, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England, General Register Office, Southport, England.
  • England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, Family Search, Eliza Blackhurst. “England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NGNQ-4MJ : 11 February 2018, Stephen Blackhurst in an entry for Eliza Blackhurst, 09 Mar 1805); citing , index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City; FHL microfilm 422,207, 422,208, 498,068, 498,069.
  • England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, Family Search, Francis Blackhurst. “England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JWN1-3XC : 11 February 2018, Stephen Blackhurst in an entry for Francis Blackhurst, 06 Jan 1812); citing , index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City; FHL microfilm 919,327.
  • England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, Family Search, John Blackhurst. “England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:N5JT-7LB : 11 February 2018, Stephen Blackhurst in entry for John Blackhurst, 26 Oct 1817); citing , index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City; FHL microfilm 919,328, 919,329, 919,360, 919,361, 919,362.
  • England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, Family Search, Mary Blackhurst. “England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:N5JL-8PD : 11 February 2018, Stephen Blackhurst in an entry for Mary Blackhurst, 06 Oct 1806); citing , index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City; FHL microfilm 919,327.
  • England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, Family Search, Stephen Blackhurst. “England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NV78-7MZ : 11 February 2018, Stephen Blackhurst in an entry for Stephen Blackhurst, 13 Jul); citing yr 1662-1810, index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City; FHL microfilm 422,208.
  • England, Derbyshire, Church of England Parish Registers, 1537-1918, Family Search, Stephen Blackhurst & Lydia Cockran – 14 Jun 1802.
  • White, 1833 History & Directory of Sheffield, Rotherham (Publisher: R. Leader), Ancestry.Com, Stephen Blackhurst – Yorkshire, England – Shoe Maker, Old workhouse, Pitsmoor. 1833 History & Directory of Sheffield, Rotherham; Publisher: R. Leader for W. White.

————–  Disclaimer  ————–

Endnotes

[1] All dates marked with “*” are speculative dates based upon the information from others.  I have NOT confirmed these dates with personal research. Instead, I consider them clues for further investigation.

[2] The 1841 Census refutes claims that Stephen was born in Yorkshire and confirmed that all of the children in this census were born in Yorkshire County.

[3] The 1849 Sheffield City Directory lists Mary as a dressmaker at 19 Chapel street.

[4] The 1852 Sheffield City Directory lists William as a shoemaker at 24 Chapel St., confirming the 1841 Census occupation for William.

[5] The occupation of Jno (John) is close to illegible. The

[6] It appears that Stephen died on 8 March 1847. I have ordered a copy of his death registry entry.

University of Leicester Special Collections

I love it when I find a new website that really helps my genealogical research. I was researching my 4th Great-grandfather, Stephen Blackhurst, Sr. (c. 1779-1847) and found “Historical Directories of England & Wales,” on the University of Leicester, “Special Collections” webpages.  They have multiple directories from 40 county’s in England and Wales.  In my case I searched for Blackhurst and found over 100 returned items.  I then added “Yorkshire” to my listing and found 15 records.  Stephen died in 1847, so eliminated directories 1850 and newer. I looked closely at the Directories for 1833, 1841, 1847, and 1849 (he should have been gone for that one).

Stephen Blackwell in the 1833 Sheffield City Directory

Sure enough, there he was; a shoe maker at the Old Workhouse in Pitsmoor and he’s a shoemaker at 57 Pye bank in the 1839 and 1841 directories as well. He was not listed in the 1849 directory (he died in 1847), but two of his children, Adamson and Mary were listed.  Adamson was a shoe and butcher knife maker, at 102 Matilda St., and Mary was a dressmaker at 19 Chapel Street. I’m not 100% positive that this Mary Blackhurst is the right Mary Blackhurst (some of Mary’s siblings could have had a daughter Mary who could be this Mary), but it is likely enough to add it as a tentative entry.

To find the city directories, visit the University of Leicester Special Collections, then select Historical Directories of England & Wales. You can then browse or search the collection by county.  For those of you with Leicestershire ancestors, they have an additional 50 directories at Historical Directories of Leicestershire.

I can hardly wait to apply these city directories to my wife’s line in Workington and Cumberland County, England.