A member of The Federation of Family History Societies
St James' Church, Haslingden
St John's Church, Bacup
St Mary's, Church Rawtenstall


Rossendale Branch Newsletter April 2013

Programme: 2013

Wednesday April 3rd

Branch AGM, to be followed by a short talk as part of our 40th Anniversary Celebrations entitled “How I came to join the Rossendale Society for Genealogy and Heraldry” from Rita Hirst.

Wednesday May 1st.

LancashireBMD revisited.
A talk by Tony Foster.

Wednesday June 5th.

A Tragedy too far. A talk by Anne Booth – the story of her great great grandmother.

Wednesday July 3rd

Irish Ancestry.
A talk by Brenda Hustler.

Research and Advice Sessions at Haslingden Library every Monday 5.30 – 8.30 pm
Note: the doors to Haslingden Library close at 7.30 pm.

and at Rawtenstall Library every Tuesday 1.30 – 3.30 pm

We may be able to do simple look-ups for distant members. When contacting us with an enquiry, please include your membership number

The LFHHS Resource Centre.

The Society’s Resource and Research Centre at 2 Straits, Oswaldtwistle, BB5 3LU is open every Thursday from 1.00pm – 5.00pm and 1st Saturday of each month 1.00pm..

Coming Events

Saturday 27th April 2013

Discovering the North-West in the National Archives.
The University of Central Lancashire Institute of Local and Family History, Preston PR1 2HE
email: lfhistory@uclan.ac.uk

Saturday 18th May 2013

LFHHS One Day Conference and AGM

At St. Cuthbert's Church Centre, Preston PR2 3AR 9.45am – 5.00pm with buffet lunch £12.50 per person. Conference only without lunch £6.50. AGM only no charge.
Applications to be received by 22nd April.
There will be three good speakers.
Full details and application form are in your February edition of "Lancashire".

Fairs and Exhibitions

27th April 2013

Pudsey Family History Fair

Pudsey Civic Hall, Dawson's Corner, Pudsey LS28 5TA 10.00 – 16.30.

1st June 2013

Sheffield Family History Fair
1867 Lounge, Sheffield Wednesday F.C.
10.00 – 16.00

29th June 2013

York Family History Fair

Knavesmire Exhibition Centre,
York Racecourse, York
10.00 – 16.30

3rd August 2013

Chorley Celebration of Local History.

Astley Hall, Chorley, Lancs.

Our 40th Anniversary Celebrations

14th September 2013. The LFHHS is holding a Family History Fair at King George's Hall, Northgate, Blackburn BB2 1AA. The day starts at 10.00 am until 4.00 pm. It is expected that each branch will have its own stall. There will also be bookstalls and representatives from other relevant bodies, the GRO, local Register Offices, etc.

15th September 2013 The Rossendale Branch will be hosting the Society's Annual Dinner which will be held at the Masonic Hall, Ashday Lea, Haslingden Road, Rawtenstall. 12.30 for 1.00pm. Further details will be in your May edition of "Lancashire".

Rossendale News, Notes and Queries

In March, Mike Coyle, the LFHHS Chairman and Education Liaison Officer, talked to us about "War Memorials as a Family History Resource". Mike is very passionate and knowledgeable about this subject. His interest is wide ranging, covering memorials on street corners, workplaces, churches, graveyards and battlefields as well as the official memorials erected by civic authorities. He said that many men and women could appear on three or four memorials and some on none at all, because of the way the data had been collected.

Transported to Australia

n November 2012, I wrote a report about three men who had been charged with burglary at the house of Daniel Lonsdale. They were tried at the Lancashire Assizes 16th January 1808. 'Elijah Moorhouse & Richard Watson were found guilty and were sentenced to death. Christopher Knowles who was charged at the same time seems to have been acquitted’. This resulted in the following information from Daphne McCartney in Australia. GGG granddaughter of Richard Watson.

Richard Watson 1788-1864

Richard Watson was born in 1788 in Haslingden, Lancashire, England the son of Richard Watson and Anne Duckworth. He was baptised on the 3rd of January 1788 at St James, Haslingden. On the 16th of March 1808 at the Lancashire Lent Assizes, along with Elijah Moorhouse (alias Morris) he was convicted of burglary of the house of D. Lonsdale (Haslingden) and sentenced to death which was then commuted to transportation for life to Van Dieman’s Land (Australia). By the 6th of May 1808 he was a nineteen year old, being held on a ‘hulk’ in Portsmouth awaiting transportation.

Richard was one of 200 convicts transported on the Ann (Ann 11) which departed Portsmouth on the 25th of August 1809 stopping at Rio de Janeiro. Ship’s captain was Charles Clarke and 197 of the male convicts arrived safely at Port Jackson, New South Wales, Australia on the 27th of February 1810, one convict named Pope having died after falling overboard and two others were re landed. Also aboard was a detachment of the 73rd soldier regiment, with Captain Maclean in charge, and a variety of stores including foodstuffs, soaps, shoes, carpenter tools, glassware and alcohol. The latter apparently to be issued according to the Governor’s approval. The prisoners arrived in good health and apparently agreed they had been well treated.

Richard, along with other convicts, was transferred from Sydney, New South Wales to Hobart, Tasmania by the ship ‘Union’ which left on the 7th of March 1810. Arrival date is unknown. Proof of Richard’s presence on this voyage is recorded in a government letter on the 13th of September 1822 which was a reply to a query by Lieutenant Governor Sorell about descriptions of convicts that arrived in Tasmania on the ship Union 1810.

There are no newspaper or government articles about Richard in Tasmania where crimes were well monitored. This would suggest that he led a law abiding life as he raised his family. He married Hannah Williams, by banns, on the 4th of October 1813 in St David’s Anglican Church, Hobart. Hannah was still fifteen years old and the daughter of convicts Rachel Hoddy and Isaac Williams. Both Richard and Hannah were unable to write and put a cross as their mark. Richard would have been 24 years old. They were married by Robert Knopwood and witnesses were James Low and David Burt. Baptism records show a total of fourteen children born to Hannah and Richard, 3 sons and 11 daughters, between 1814 and 1838. Frances 1814, Mary 1816, Eliza 1819, Rachel Ann Rebecca 1821, Isaac William Henry 1823, Ann Eliza 1825, Richard 1827, Elizabeth 1829, Catherine 1831, Caroline Susannah 1833, Eliza Ann 1835, Lydia and Martha (twins) 1836 and William Henry Watson 1838.

In the 1821 convict muster Richard is listed as emancipated which meant he had completed his sentence and was finally a free man. His occupations included sawyer (recorded on children’s birth certificates 1829-1833) and from 1835 a farmer. The 1811 convict records placed him as a resident in Hobart and later he lived at Sorell Plains and High Plains then from1833 he remained in Ouse.

Richard’s wife, Hannah, died on the 19th of February 1850 in Ouse. She was 50 years old and died from consumption. The informant of her death was Thomas Hoskinson, a nephew (son of Hannah’s sister Mary). The Mercury newspaper on Friday 24th of June 1864 recorded that Richard Watson had died the day before at ‘Ouse Cottage’ the home of his son in law Edward Burris (husband of Frances Watson) He was recorded as being in his eightieth year and one of the oldest residents in the Ouse and Hamilton districts. On his death certificate he was described as a 79 year old farmer whose cause of death was gradual decay. His death was informed by his grandson John Burris. No record shows where Richard was laid to rest but it is likely he was buried at Watson’s Marsh where his wife was buried. There is a brick with Richard’s name in Campbell Town, Tasmania in the Convict Brick Trail which commemorates our convict heritage.

One strange newspaper entry records the sale of Richard’s house and two other land lots in Ouse, in 1889, twenty five year after his death. Richard had one son called Richard who lived in NSW, Australia before and after Richard seniors’ death and he was still alive in 1889. So who lived there in the interim and why did it take so long before they were sold? Mr Alfred Harrex is listed on the sale notice as living in ‘a nice four roomed cottage’ on Lot 3, Alfred being married to Hannah’s niece Hannah Rachel (nee Burris) No resident is recorded in the six room house or two room cottage on Lot 1 where there was also a blacksmith’s shop.
Daphne McCartney. email daphne5090@yahoo.com.au