Probable ancestry

THE THREE WILLIAM STUBBSES

around 1720-around 1800 (Church Broughton Derbyshire)
1756-1825 (Church Broughton Derbyshire and Barton under Needwood Staffordshire)
1799-1848 (Hilton Derbyshire and Barton under Needwood Staffordshire)

 Thought to be William Stubbs 1756-1825 (unverified); silhouette probably of 1823 ?

 Thought to be Susanna Stubbs (nee' Burrows) 1751-1828. Inscription on reverse is ambiguous; silhouette of 1817.
 
The three William Stubbses and their families seem to have moved reasonably freely between a group of villages on the Staffordshire/Derbyshire border near Burton on Trent. In particular they seem to have been based in Barton under Needwood Staffordshire though they may well have originated in or near Church Broughton in Derbyshire. Often I believe they would have moved to find work, and when working would have remained in that area. Hence their temporary connection with the villages of Hilton and Marston on Dove, near to both Church Broughton and Barton under Needwood. It is worth noticing that the two earliest William's wives were from Sudbury in Derbyshire, another village in the Church Broughton vicinity. Both Sudbury and Church Broughton formed part of the Vernon estates in Derbyshire. Church Broughton was enclosed in 1775 though negotiations towards its enclosure had begun in 1756. It is possible that the Stubbses relocated from Church Broughton to Hilton/Marston on Dove after being displaced by the effects of this enclosure. However it is equally possible that the family was based in Barton under Needwood and/or nearby Yoxall and travelled to surrounding areas in order to find work, settling temporarily near to their places of employment. Barton under Needwood, and its surrounding forest area was enclosed between 1803 and 1811.

 William Stubbs 1799-1848

 Alice Stubbs (nee' Clark ? previously Shaw) 1789-1849
Silhouettes made in 1823 the year of their marriage at Marston on Dove.

WILLIAM STUBBS "labourer of Hilton Derbyshire" 1799-1849 was married to ALICE SHAW "widow of Marston on Dove" 1789-1849 at Marston on Dove Church Derbyshire on the 14th April 1823. William and Alice both signed the register with a cross indicating that neither was able to write. One witness at their marriage was a certain John Stubbs. I have reason to believe that this John may have been William's elder brother though I am not at present able to conclusively prove this. William was the youngest of seven children; the two younger children were probably born in Barton under Needwood and the elder five at Church Broughton. As indicated in the Parish Register, Alice Shaw was a widow at the time of her marriage to William having previously been married to a John Shaw 1785-1822. The only reference I can find to what may have been Alice's previous marriage is that of Alice Clark and John Shaw at Chaddesden Derbyshire, a village which has now become an eastern suburb of Derby, on the 14th April 1817 (IGI) and Alice may originally have come from here. Strangely April the 14th was also the day on which she married William Stubbs in 1823 ! Alice brought two children to her new marriage; Elizabeth christened at Marston on Dove on the 21st January 1821 and Mary christened in the same place on the 24th January 1819.

There is a very strong possibility that William 1799-1848 was the son of another WILLIAM STUBBS Christened Church Broughton 19th July 1756 buried Barton under Needwood 20th March 1825 who married a lady called SUSANNA BURROWS 1751-1828 at Church Broughton (close to Hilton and Marston on Dove) Derbyshire on the 18th November 1776. Susanna Burrows was from equally nearby Sudbury in Derbyshire.

This couple had eight children according to the Parish Registers of Church Broughton and Barton under Needwood :

1) Sarah christened at Church Broughton on the 8th August 1777. This Sarah Stubbs is recorded as having borne an illgitimate son christened George Birch in 1804. She married presumably he child's father Thomas Birch "of Alrewas" b. 1784 that same year, beginning I believe a possible but distant link between the more wealthy Birch family and the more impoverished Stubbses. Thomas and Sarah went on to have at least two more children together; Thomas christened at Barton under Needwood on the 9th March 1806 and Ann christened at Barton under Needwood on the 6th March 1808. As for George, who had been born illegitimate, it appears that he went first to Oldbury near Birmingham where he worked as a Boatman and probably met his wife Charlotte who was born there (HO 107 908 8); by 1851 he is settled in Aston Birmingham with a growing family and is working as a porter until at least 1871 (HO 107 20 61; RG9 21 48; RG10 31 10). Links are maintained with Barton under Needwood in that in 1861 George has a lodger who originates from there.

2) Hannah christened at Church Broughton on the 31st March 1780. She married William Blount at Church Broughton on the 21st March 1799. The couple had seven children.

3) Rebecca christened at Church Broughton on the 23rd June 1782. She married Thomas Bentley at nearby Dalbury on the 22nd of June 1801.

4) Mary christened at Church Broughton on the 6th February 1785.

5) Ann christened at Barton uner Needwood on the 3rd April 1787. She married Thomas Kent at St Michael's Church Tattenhill on the 3rd June 1810. Ann was a witness to her sister Sarah's marriage to Thomas Birch in 1804. Ann was possibly buried at St James’ Barton under Needwood in 1863.

6) John christened either at Barton under Needwood on the 2nd August 1789 (IGI, but not located in Parish Register) or more likely at Church Broughton on the 7th October 1790. This was very possibly the John Stubbs who acted as witness at his probable brother William's wedding in 1823. He was buried at Barton under Needwood on the 13th February 1837 aged 46 thus making his birth year of 1790 more likely.

7) Thomas christened at Church Broughton on the 9th March 1795. He married his first wife Mary Collier (b.1806) at Tattenhill on the 3rd October 1825. The couple had five children; Eliza b.1825, Elizabeth b.1828 d.1850?, William b.1830 d.1833?, Sarah b.1833 d.1835 ?, and Joanna b.1834 d.1835. The latter four of these children were baptized and probably buried at Barton under Needwood indicating that the family had moved there. After Mary's death in 1835 Thomas remarried Sarah Allcock (1794-1873) at St James Church Barton under Needwood. Sarah had been previously widowed, perhaps twice, and brought at least one child, Ann Allcock (b. Burton 1816) to the marriage. With Sarah, Thomas had a further two children; George b.1837 and christened at Barton under Needwood; and Hannah b.1840. By the time of the 1861 census the couple have removed to Riders Buildings, Smith Street, Hampton, Birmingham (2156/81/16). Anne Alcock seems to be the only child still at home. She is described as a "seamstress" aged 45 so evidently unmarried. In the household there appear to be three boarders though one of these, Richard Wilson aged 22, is confusingly said to be Thomas and Sarah's "son". This is probably an error on the census officer's part. Thomas' occupation is given as "labourer". Thomas and Sarah are still resident in Birmingham in 1871 though Thomas now claims his birthplace as Barton under Needwood rather than at Church Broughton as he had done in 1861.

8) Possibly William, probably born in 1799 as he is described as being 49 years old at his death in 1848. I have not as yet found a record of his christening at either Church Broughton or Barton under Needwood though he certainly lived for the latter part of his life, died and was buried there.

 South Derbyshire and North Staffordshire in 1775
 

REASONS FOR BELIEVING WILLIAM STUBBS b.1799 TO BE THE SON OF WILLIAM STUBBS b. 1756 AND SUSANNA STUBBS (nee' Burrows)

1) The Christian name "William" itself.....it seems surprising that none of William and Susanna Stubbs' other children had had this very common and indeed habitual famly name.

2) William and Susanna were certainly still having children in 1795 (ie Thomas). William could have been their last child....an "accident" perhaps !

3) The first record of Wiliam Stubbs (b.1799) is of his being a labourer of Hilton, then a hamlet very close to Church Broughton, the village where William and Susanna were married and where most of their children were Christened. He is marrying a woman from Marston on Dove, another village very close to Church Broughton.

4) William and Susanna moved from Church Broughton to Barton under Needwood, probably in the mid 1780s. Ann, their daughter, was born there in 1787, possibly John 1789-90 and maybe even William if he was their son.

William and Susanna were both buried at Barton under Needwood where William and Alice also moved, lived, died and were buried. William and Susanna appear in the Barton under Needwood Parish Registers as "Paupers" Perhaps they had left Church Broughton to be near other members of their family resident at Barton under Needwood, a procedure permitted under the Old Poor Laws. Barton under Needwood had its own workhouse at this period. If this had not been the case one would have expected them to have entered the Burton upon Trent Union which was nearer to Church Broughton.

5) William and Alice's children all seem to have the same names as those of the previous generation (ie that of William and Susanna) : William after his father and perhaps grandfather, Susan possibly after her grandmother, Sarah possibly after her aunt, Ann possibly after her aunt and John possibly after his uncle.

6) One of the witnesses at William and Alice' wedding was a "John Stubbs", possibly William Stubbs' elder brother and the son of William and Susanna.

7) Sarah Stubbs, the daughter of William and Susanna b.1777 had an illegitimate child named George Birch in 1804. She married, presumably the child's father Thomas Birch "of Alrewas" (probably Thomas Birch b. Alrewas 1784), that same year. At least three of the children of William and Alice were in service to the Birch family over many years. Sarah Stubbs, the daughter of William and Alice b.1824 became housekeeper to George Birch of Efflinch (a hamlet near Barton under Needwood) and received a very generous legacy from him, inheriting all his property. It is possible that this George may have been a distant cousin by marriage and that some kind of relationship was acknowleged as existing between the two families to the extent that Sarah was made sole executrix of George Birch's will. In short I am suggesting that Sarah Stubbs b.1824 may have been the niece of Sarah Stubbs b.1777 and that therefore William and Susanna were Sarah Stubbs b.1824 Grandparents, and therefore William Stubbs (b.1799) parents. Incidentally Sarah Stubbs will was proved in 1865 by a solicitor of Lichfield named George Birch (b. 1811) who was most likely the son of her employer and possibly a distant relation.

8) Wiliam Stubbs' b.1756 own brother Thomas obviously had a conection with Barton under Needwood, three of his children being Christened there in 1771, 1772 and 1774. It seems to me therefore reasonable to say that the Stubbses were based equally and moved between the Church Broughton area and the Barton under Needwood areas fairly freely. Similarly, William (B.1799)'s probable brother Thomas (b.1795) was also based in Barton under Needwood where his children were baptised in the 1830s and where he celebrated his second marriage. Thomas himself had been born in Church Broughton.

9) The only other possible origins for William found to date are those of one William Stubbs christened on the 27th October 1799 at Over in Cheshire according to the Parish Register of that village and a reference in IGI to one William Stubbs born "about 1800" in Middlewich Cheshire. These may refer to the same individual. It is difficult to see why this or one of these individuals should end up working as a day labourer in Hilton Derbyshire and then being seemingly closely associated with the extended Stubbs family who settled in Barton under Needwood. It seems therefore that the identification of William as being the son of William and Susanna is more likely. Incidentally, the father of the William Stubbs christened at Over in 1799 is given in the Register as being William Stubbs, the mother's name is not given. It is incredibly unlikely but just possible that William was the son (perhaps illegitimate) of William Stubbs b.1756 who was in Over for some reason at the end of the eighteenth century.

  St James' Church Barton under Needwood in 1812
 
Both William and Susanna were buried at Barton under Needwood in North-East Staffordshire, indicating a connection with that village and probably with William and Alice Stubbs (their son and daughter-in law if I am correct). Indeed, William and Alice were also buried there. I visted Barton under Needwood in 2010 and spoke with a local historian. We located the gravestone of Sarah, the daughter of William and Alice, in the Churchyard (image attached). This lady, Sarah Stubbs, never married and it is strange that she should have such an expensive memorial despite being from a very poor family. It is possible that this memorial may have been paid for by a legacy from George Birch, an "Independant Gentleman" and possibly a distant wealthy relation for whom Sarah worked as "Housekeeper". Thus she is described in the census of 1861 (RG09 1964 38 26). Alternatively the monument might have been paid for by her fellow servant John Moreland to whom she left her property on her death in 1865. According to the 1861 census her residence at this date is in George Birch's house "Crownlands" in the hamlet of "Efflinch" which has given its name to a road still existing in nearby Barton under Needwood. The historian thinks there may possibly be other Stubbs gravestones in the churchyard of Barton under Needwood but unfortunately they were all laid flat in 1957 to make cutting the grass easier, and have since become buried. William (1756-1825)'s father was yet another WILLIAM STUBBS born about 1720 who married a woman called Elizabeth Milner in 1754. This lady was, like Susanna Burrows also from Sudbury in Derbyshire and their marriage took place at the Church of that village on the 15th September 1754. Elizabeth Milner was probably William's second wife. He was previously married to another woman, probably also called ELIZABETH, by whom he had four children besides William; namely:

1) Hannah born in 1746

2) John born in 1748

3) Thomas born in 1751. Thomas married Anne Dawson at St James Church Barton under Needwood on the11th August 1771. There is in that Church's Parish Register record of a daughter Rebecca born to them in 1771 and son John born to them who died in infancy and was buried at Barton under Needwood on the 23rd April 1773. Another son William was Christened on the 10th April 1774. Soon after that date the family moved to London where a further two daughters Jane and Ann were born to them. These girls were married in 1810 and 1794 respectively. The family seem to have been based around Hoxton where Thomas was first a wine porter (1794) and then a broker (1824). At death he left a will. The will made provision for his mistress Ann Prentice known as Ann Stubbs, for his daughter "Jane Dawson the wife of Henry", for his daughter Ann Bailey and for his grandaughter" Eliza the daughter of William, glazier and plumber". Thomas brother Anthony was the executor of the will. Thomas' son William had been apprenticed as a plumber and glazier in 1794. A record of this apprenticeship exists in the archive of the plumbers company in London, it reads " William Stubbs son of Thomas of Shoreditch (Hoxton) master wine porter 1794".

4) William, christened 19th July 1756

5) Anthony born in 1761. Like his brother Thomas, Anthony also appears to have relocated to London where his family are traceable in the Shoreditch, Lambeth and Bethnal Green areas. Anthony married three times. Firstly to Mary Covell in 1792 by whom he had five children; Mary b.1791, Hannah b.1793, Elizabeth Mary b.1796, William Anthony b.1797, and Sarah born 1798. Secondly to Elizabeth Wood in 1800 by whom he had no issue unless the previously cited Elizabeth Mary and William Anthony were in fact her children. Thirdly to Jane Lees in 1804; they had a further three children together; Jane Rebecca b.1806, Wiliam John b.1809 (he died in1860 leaving a will) and Anna born in 1812.

All the above children of William Stubbs, Elizabeth his first wife and Elizabeth Milner his second were Christened at Church Broughton.

  Needwood Forest in the late 18th/early 19th Century.