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 May 2012

Programme: 2012

Wednesday 2nd May

Research Evening

Wednesday 6th June

‘And in flew Enza’

a talk by Tony Foster

Wednesday 4th July

Newchurch in Pendle People

a talk by Brenda Hustler

Wednesday 1st August

Research evening

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.


This is a pay-per-view website, recently launched, which is the Irish version of the Find My Past franchise. It is operated in conjunction with Eneclann. You can use this site for free at the Straits, but it is only on one computer, so booking is advisable.

Find My Past

Are you aware that Find My Past in now available for library members to search at local Lancashire Libraries, free of charge?

Added to Find My Past, 24th April 2012 113,000 new Chester wills and probate records on findmypast.co.uk for the period 1492-1911.

The records include all surviving original wills of Cheshire residents proved at the Chester diocesan consistory court 1492-1857 and registered copies made at Chester Probate Registry 1858-1911.

Coming Events

Collecting Local History Days 2012 The Museum of Lancashire is once again collecting items for display in the Peoples Gallery. of the newlly refurbished Museum of Lancashire, Preston.
If you have an item with an interesting story and would like to see it displayed in the County Museum they would like to hear from you. Items don’t have to be spectaculor or even very old, they just have to say something about your life in Lancashire:

Wednesday 9th May- Colne Library, 1-4pm
Wednesday 30th May- Nelson Library, 1-4pm
Tuesday 19th June- Accrington Library, 1-4pm
Thursday 21st May- Burnley Library, 1-4 pm
Saturday 23rd June- Clitheroe Library, 12-3pm
Saturday 30th June- Rawtenstall Library, 12-3pm
For further information contact Stephen Miller, Community Out Reach Officer stephen.miller@lacashire.gov.uk 01772 534046

Saturday 19th May 2012

LFHHS One Day Conference
9.45am to 5.00pm at St. Cuthbert’s Church Centre, Lytham Road, Preston, Lancashire PR2 3AR
3 good speakers. £12.50 with buffet lunch. £6.50 without buffet lunch.
Full details and booking form were included in your “Lancashire” journal for February 2012.
This is a chance to meet old friends, make new ones and put faces to names.
There will be an opportunity to exchange information etc… also a selection of books, CDs, and fiche which can be purchased or ordered.

Lancashire BMD updates for the Hyndburn and Rossendale area.

19th April Added 25,000 Births for: Rawtenstall A 1st (1895-1937)
31st March Added 499 Deaths for Newchurch (1880-1881)

Rossendale News, Notes and Queries

Last month we had our AGM followed by a talk about the Rostron Family of Edenfield and their life in Rio de Janerio and Australia.

Programme Secretary needed

At the AGM all the existing members of the Rossendale committee agreed to continue in their present positions with the exception of our Programme Organiser, Leo Turner, who has other commitments. As you will appreciate the position of programme secretary is essential to the smooth running of the branch. A volunteer is urgently required to arrange the calendar for next year. Leo has completed the programme until the end of this year and with several regular features, two research evenings, members’ ten minute talks and the Christmas Social, it will only be necessay to find seven speakers and arrange the Out Visit. Anyone willing to undertake this task should contact John Dalton, our Chairman or any other committee member.

Migrants from Bacup, to the USA and New Zealand
by Beryl Venables

My maternal grandmother, Emily Hetty Mawdsley b 1876 married Samuel Jackson in Bacup in 1896.Emily probably had eleven siblings. I have been able to trace details of these people as I was given many details by my Aunt more than twenty years ago.
I had known from an early age that two of these siblings had emigrated.Nancy Mawdsley b 1881 married Harry Hoyle b 1881, in 1905 at St James', Bacup. Harry Hoyle is listed on the 1911 census as Grocery Manager of a Co-operative store in Bacup. Their daughter Alice was born in 1915. This family left from Southampton for New York on the 'Cleveland', 22 October 1923, with last address in the UK as 63 Market Street, Bacup. Ellis Island site gives a destination as Bridgeport, Connecticut.

My mother and her sister spoke of 'our cousin in California', and in recent months I have had contact with the daughter-in-law of Alice - family still in California. I had always understood that Nancy and Harry had stayed in the USA but I have found them travelling back to the New York from Liverpool on the White Star Line ship, 'Laconia' in June 1939. I am in irregular contact with California - I need to establish whether they died in the USA or here, as has been implicated.

Emily and Nancy's youngest brother was Herbert Mawdsley b 1893. He married Ethel Sutcliffe in 1912 and they had two daughters born in January and December of 1913.

Herbert travelled from Southampton to Auckland, New Zealand, in March 1928 on the 'Hororata'. Ethel and the girls emigrated over a year later in September 1929. Tragedy struck early as Alice died of Rheumatic Fever in October 1931. This was a shattering blow especially to Ethel and led to the breakup of her marriage to Herbert and divorce in 1941. I knew something of this family as in my childhood we always had cards from New Zealand and occasionally copies of NZ 'Weekly News', I don't know when these stopped. Herbert had remarried to, Rose, and she outlived him.

My mother and Aunt heard from their cousin, Peggy, and knew she had a daughter. Several years ago I tried to find out any relevant dates from websites in New Zealand, but with little success. A request to 'Helping Hands' brought some results. Also, I had had communications with a distant relative of my father's family who lived in Auckland. This lady looked up electoral rolls records for me. What a star!

Herbert had died in Auckland in 1959 and Ethel in 1969.

I tried to look at the growing entries for NZ online, but could find nothing to trace Herbert's grand -daughter. Several years have now passed since I found all the above information and had almost given up hope of finding her.

Last September, out of the blue, my ancestry account said that someone had looked at the same California cousin that I had. That was a lovely email to send as I had been found by Herbert's grand-daughter.My second cousin and I are now in regular contact. She was unsure whether there would be any relatives left from her!
email: berylvenables@talktalk.net