Site Updates - Elizabeth Gale (later Hellier)

Category: What's New at Hibbitt.org.uk

Hibbitt Family Tree section

  • Added further details and notes for my 4 x great-grandmother, Elizabeth Gale.
So what have I discovered so far?

Elizabeth Gale was married to Samuel Hellier in Tavistock in 1815. She was most likely widowed before 1841 as she appears on the census with her grand-daughter, Sarah Hellier, and a Grace Gale, who was probably a relative but I've yet to discover who Grace was. Residing in West Street in 1841, Elizabeth and her grand-daughter lived at Ford Street Alms House in 1851 and 1861.

Elizabeth lived to be about 78 years old and was still working as a laundress 3 years before she died. She was probably born in Widecombe-in-the-Moor as stated on the 1851 census, although the 1861 census puts Tavistock as her birth place. This might easily have been an error - whoever gave the enumerator the information might have guessed or said 'Don't know' so perhaps Tavistock was chosen because this was where the family were living at the time.

I need to undertake further research to discover Elizabeth's roots but, as I don't currently have access to baptism registers for Widecombe, this will be placed on hold for the time-being.

Place names: Tavistock and Widecombe-in-the-Moor in the county of Devon.

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Sentimental Sunday: Messing about on the Water

Category: Sharing Memories

My Grandpa Hibbitt (Charles George Hibbitt) used to have a boat, a small cabin cruiser, and we spent many hours as a family on the Kingsbridge/Salcombe Estuary. He kept the boat at Frogmore Creek, a short drive from his and Gran's home in the South Hams village of East Allington.

Frogmore in 2010
Frogmore in 2010

They say the sense of smell is the most nostalgic of the senses. Every spring when the new season arrives there's a certain smell in the air and it always reminds me of our days out in the boat. Mind you, the smell of two-stroke does the same thing.

Grandpa on his boat
Grandpa on his boat

Grandpa had two rowing boats but one leaked so we never used it. The other one would accompany us on our day trip, being towed by the cruiser. The rowing boats were named after my elder brother and I (my younger brother probably wasn't born when the names were first used). It sounds stupid now but I remember being miffed that the leaky boat was the one named after me......Read more »

Site Updates - Surnames: Hellyer/Hellier, Congdon, Sillick

Category: What's New at Hibbitt.org.uk

Upon researching my 2 x great-grandparents, John Gale Hellier & Mary Ann Congdon, I've discovered more about their children.

After one of their twins, May Amelia Hellyer, died under the age of 2, they also lost another daughter, Alice Maud, at 10 months old. A second son (and 10th child), John, was born in April 1890, just a few months before his mother died.

John senior found himself widowed with 8 children whose ages ranged from 12 years to 4 months. It's not surprising that by the following year (1891) two of his daughters, Lily Elizabeth and Sarah May (my great-grandmother), were living with extended family members. The young boy, John, was adopted by Thomas Simpson (a naval pensioner and perhaps a friend of John's father) and his wife, Mary. Sadly, the boy died at the age of 9 years.

Hibbitt Family Tree section

Place names: Tavistock and also Devonport in Plymouth, both in the county of Devon.

Resources > Hibbitt Family Tree Biographies section

Amended the biography page for John Gale Hellier.

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Sentimental Sunday: Postman Spoils Special Homecoming

Category: Sharing Memories

I remember my gran (Phyllis Grace Geake, nee Weaver) once telling me what happened the day my grandpa (William Hellyer Geake) arrived home from the second world war, having been away for four years.

It was fairly early in the morning when grandpa got home and his arrival coincided with that of the postman (or it might have been the milkman but I think it was the former). The postman knew grandpa and proceeded to ask him all about his time away in the war and stood at the doorstep chatting for 5 or 10 minutes. How insensitive! All the while, gran was waiting to greet the husband she hadn't seen for such a long time. In addition to this, he'd never even met his 4 year old daughter, who was more than a little coy at the sight of this strange man in their house! Gran said the postman ruined their reunion.

My Grandpa's WWII Service Record
My Grandpa's WWII Service Record

[Why Sentimental Sunday? This phrase has been included in the title in order to take part in Blogging Prompts at Geneabloggers]

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Site Updates - Surnames: Geake, Dinner, Arscott, Pengelly, Walters, Dearing, Ball, Edwards, Sillick, Hellier, Gale, Hibbitt, Pitcher, Newbold, Day

Category: What's New at Hibbitt.org.uk

With my new FindMyPast.co.uk subscription, I've been delving into my maternal family, taking advantage of the many Devon records in their databases.

Hibbitt Family Tree section

The Church at Peter Tavy
The Church at Peter Tavy

Place names: Milton Abbot, Marystow, Peter Tavy, Wapsworthy, Cudlipptown, Mary Tavy, Tavistock, Okehampton, Hatherleigh - all in Devon; plus Birmingham and Ireland.

Resources > Family Tree Reports section

Updated the report for the 'Ancestors of William Hellyer Geake'.

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Site Updates - Surnames: Hibbitt, Pitcher, Young, Gardner, Applegate, Holt, Ellen, Byden

Category: What's New at Hibbitt.org.uk

Hibbitt Family Tree section

Place names: Ladywood in Birmingham; Uley, Coaley and Rockhampton in Gloucestershire; Bath, Northwick and Keynsham in Somerset.

Barnes Family Tree section

Place names: St Saviour, Southwark in Surrey; Islington and Holloway in London; Bedford in Bedfordshire; Manchester; Edmonton and Muswell Hill in Middlesex; Penzance in Cornwall; Reading in Berkshire; Seaham Harbour in Durham.

Resources > Hibbitt Family Tree Biographies section

Added biography page for Benjamin Pitcher (abt. 1775-1857) .

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Surname Saturday: Doing the Deed!

Category: Making Memories

The Deed is done! What Deed...I hear you say. The Deed Poll, that's what!

No this isn't a riddle or a joke and it's not a hypothetical either. For some time now, I've been considering incorporating my maiden name back into my name. My interest in family history, together with a strong desire to identify with my heritage, has spurred this decision on. So I ordered a pack from UK Deed Poll Service - and now I'm officially called Anne Mary Hibbitt BARNES.

I'm an advocate for the institution of marriage and have no desire to have a different surname to my husband so Hibbitt is now my second middle name, although it was my surname at birth. For any married women out there who don't want to completely abandon their maiden name, a Deed Poll is an excellent way of keeping hold of it.

As to my Christian name, although informally I like to be known as Annie (and I shall continue in this vein), I decided that I should still formally be known as Anne. This is, and always has been, my proper name (given to me at birth and the one I was baptized with) and therefore, I don't think I should want to change it now. In effect, all I have done is put back what was mine in the first instance, not altering or adding to it.

Of course, most people won't notice anything different but I will know and that's important to me. From now on, I can put Hibbitt on official forms. I've yet to complete the task of changing all my official documents - for some this could be laborious and is what has made me hesitate until now. However, getting ones documents changed is part of the point of it, as well as being a legal requirement, so I've finally bitten the bullet and gone for it.

Once more, I have that connection with my blood line reflected in my name. Who knows, maybe a descendant will stumble across my headstone in 200 years time, or discover me in the paper trail (or digital footprint), see the name and make that connection too!

[Why Surname Saturday? This phrase has been included in the title in order to take part in Blogging Prompts at Geneabloggers]

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Site Updates - James Smale, yeoman of Shebbear - Biography page

Category: What's New at Hibbitt.org.uk

Resources > Biographies (Hibbitt Family Tree) section

I've created a new biography page for my 6 x great-grandfather, James Smale. The biography mainly consists of a transcript of James' will which he wrote in October 1811. James died within the year and probate was granted to two of his sons, Edward and Richard Smale. The value of the estate was under 200, a tidy sum in 1812.

You can access James' biography from the Hibbitt family Biographies index page or by clicking on the Biography link on one of James' family pages; here or here. I've also placed a photo of Shebbear on his family page with first wife, Thomasine.

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Site Updates - Joseph Dando and his wives and children

Category: What's New at Hibbitt.org.uk

Hibbitt Family Tree section

I've been doing a little more digging on my 3 x great-grandfather, Joseph Dando, the younger, and as a result, I've added more facts and updated his biography. Here are the latest findings:

  • I found a marriage licence between Joseph and Helen Shirreff [probably Sheriff] in Dublin in 1829. I knew that Joseph had been in Dublin before moving to America but I hadn't considered that he and Helen, who was his 2nd wife, might have married in Ireland before travelling to America. They divorced in New York.
  • Joseph's 3rd wife was Jane Clark. I now know the date of their marriage in Philadelphia - 7 September 1836. Jane died a little over 3 years later.
  • I discovered that Joseph's 4th wife was Sally Ann Bell Clark, rather than Sarah Clark, as previously thought. It's worth noting that Sally can be a nickname for Sarah. I discovered they married in Philadelphia on 7 August 1841. Sally might have been related to Jane (perhaps sisters) as both Jane Dando and a Sally Clark were parties to an act in February 1939 to confirm the title of both of them to certain lands situated in Baltimore. Sally's fate is unknown.
  • Other details include Joseph's church membership and Confirmation which took place on 28 February 1841 in Pennsylvania. Listed as Communicants in 1844 were Joseph, his 5th wife Harriet Catherine Williams (my 3 x great-grandmother), and a Harriet Richards. This was probably the same Miss Richards who was described as a servant and accompanied the Dandos on the journey to England in August 1844.
  • I found a death notice for Joseph in the Belfast Newsletter which confirmed he died at his home in Carlisle Street, Belfast. It also stated that he was to be buried in the Shankhill Burying Ground.
  • I've added details of Joseph's will, which was straightforward: he left everything to his widow, his 6th wife, Sarah, nee Walker. Sarah and her sister, Martha Walker, were appointed to be his executors. Only Sarah obtained probate although Martha reserved the right if the need arose.
  • I discovered yet another child, Joseph and Sarah (Walker's) first child was a son called Alfred, who was born in 1867. Their middle son, Samuel John, died as an infant. In 1873, Sarah travelled to New York with her second husband, John Hamilton, her sister, Martha Walker, and her 4 year old son, George Dando, the youngest of Joseph and Sarah's three boys. I've yet to learn what happened to Alfred though.
Place names: Dublin and Belfast in Ireland, New York and Philadelphia in USA.

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Site Updates - Surnames: Woodall, Lee, Rusby, Smale, French, Cooper, Fryer, Applegate + new Picture Gallery

Category: What's New at Hibbitt.org.uk

Hibbitt Family Tree section

Additions include:

Place names: Hatfield (near Doncaster) & York, both in Yorkshire, Black Torrington & Shebbear in North Devon, Chepstow, Monmouthshire.

Barnes Family Tree section

Recent changes:

Resources > Dynamic Family Trees section

Both family databases in the Dynamic Family Trees section have been updated.

Picture Galleries

Altered the order of the links in the navigation bar on the main site. The old Gallery link is now called 'Pictures' and is the entry point to two separate photo galleries. Added new Barnes Family Picture Gallery with the following albums:

[Note: All content on the Hibbitt & Barnes Family History website and blog is copyrighted. Click here for conditions of use.]
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