cowling

Tombstone Tuesday – Elizabeth Dawson (nee Overton)


This is the headstone at the grave of Elizabeth Dawson (nee Overton) at Holy Trinity Church, Cowling, West Yorkshire.  She married my 2nd cousin 3x removed, Thompson Dawson.

Elizabeth was born about 1848, probably in Cowling.  There are two births registered in the name of Elizabeth Overton, one in 1847 and the other in 1848.  Both are registered in the Skipton registration district.  So without getting at least the marriage certificate and probably one or both birth certificates I can’t be sure which is the correct person.

Anyway, Elizabeth and Thompson married in the December quarter of 1868.  Again this was probably at Holy Trinity Church in Cowling.

Thompson and Elizabeth made their home in the small hamlet of Middleton on the outskirts of Cowling.  I have found them in the 1871 census together with their son William Henry Dawson.

They had at least one other son, Ernest, born in 1874.

Elizabeth died on 8 June 1880 and was buried four days later at the young age of 32.

On this day … 25th August

1847 … John Dawson was buried at Holy Trinity church in Cowling, West Yorkshire.  He is my 1st cousin 4x removed.

1872 … Frederick Espley was born in Biddulph, Staffordshire to parents Joseph Booth Espley and Christiana Boyle.  He is my wife’s 1st cousin 2x removed.

Cowling – Postcard #8

This is a postcard scene of Cowling in West Yorkshire.  The postcard is unused and is in good condition.  It is part of a series published by F. Frith & Co. Ltd of Reigate.

The location is on the outskirts of the village on the main road to Colne, in Lancashire.

The building on the right is the Black Bull public house.  This has sadly closed down and the building is now used as a pine and oak furniture shop.

In the far distance at the top of the postcard you can just make out Cowling Pinnacle.

The photograph below was taken on a recent visit to Cowling.  I couldn’t quite get in to  the same spot in the field where the postcard scene appears to have been taken from.  I am standing somewhere on the edge of the main so couldn’t quite get the same panoramic view.

Searching for the graves

Holy Trinity Church, Cowling

I have a couple of weeks off work and thought I would make the most of my time on family history stuff.

So I spent all day yesterday updating and cross checking some research on a tree I am doing for a relative. I hardly moved from the computer screen from first thing in the morning until early evening.

Today I decided that I would get out in to the fresh air.

I dropped Jayne at the bus stop at about 6.45am and carried on to Cowling, near Keighley – a journey of about 26 miles. I had a flask of coffee, sandwiches and my camera. The plan was to hunt down some more gravestones.

I trawled through the National Burial Index recently and identified a number of relatives buried at Holy Trinity Church in Cowling and a couple at a small cemetery in Steeton with Eastburn not far from Cowling.

I had quite a long list including Dawson, Gawthrop and Snowden ancestors. I have to say that I wasn’t all that optimistic of finding very many headstones. And indeed that turned out to be right – I came home with only six names crossed off my list.

I am guessing that the graves I can’t find must all be without headstones. There were a great many of these. So I am thinking that perhaps the church will have a record of who is buried in which unmarked grave. There wasn’t anyone around today so I will have to follow this up later.

I was a bit more optimistic when I visited the small cemetery at Steeton with Eastburn. I was looking for the graves of two brothers – Arthur and Clement Dawson. Unfortunately I couldn’t find them either. And by now it had started to rain so I was feeling rather miserable.

I did manage to take a good photograph of Holy Trinity Church though. I have been on the look out for a postcard but haven’t seen one yet.

This is a Victorian church designed by Robert Dennis Chantrell and built in 1845. It is now a Grade II listed building.

The village of Cowling is Saxon in origin and is recorded in the Domesday Book as ‘Collinge’. The name means Coll’s people or tribe. At the time of the Norman Conquest the main landowner was Gamel who had very large land holdings in Yorkshire. His name survives in Gamsgill on the northern edge of the village.

Originally the village comprised three separate hamlets namely Ickornshaw, Middleton, Gill and Cowling Hill. It was only following the construction of the main Keighley to Colne Road and the building of large mills alongside the road that what is now regarded as the main village was constructed providing terraced cottage homes for the mill workers.

The older parts of the village faded in importance and as a result the parish church and village school are located on what appears to be the outskirts of the village between Ickornshaw and Middleton, the centre of the village having moved since their construction.

On this day…..29th March

1749     John Skelding and Mary Sadler were married in Old Swinford, Worcestershire.  They are my wife’s 5x great grandparents.

1793     Priscilla Dawson was born in Cowling, West Yorkshire.  She was the daughter of John Dawson and Ann Watson and is my 3rd great grand aunt.

Cowling – Postcard #2

This is a postcard of Croft Mill in Cowling, West Yorkshire.  The postcard is unused and undated.  There is no printer or publisher name although it looks to be from the same range as another one in my collection by F. Frith & Co. Ltd of Reigate.

The mill was owned and run by John Binns & Son Ltd. (1852-1971).  The mill was built on land behind the Bay Horse Inn known as “The Croft”.  A history of the mill was published in a book called Binns – A Weaving Century.  After more than a hundred years of production and eventual take over by big business tycoons the doors were closed for the last time on 17 July 1971.

The mill was demolished between 1971 and 1972 and houses now stand where once stood a piece of history from the industrial revolution.

Cowling – Postcard #1

We had a day off work today and the weather was pretty good so we decided to have a trip to Cowling village, the home of my Dawson ancestors.  You could have an interesting debate as to whether Cowling is in North or West Yorkshire.  The village falls within North Yorkshire County Council but has a West Yorkshire post code.  I prefer to think of it as in West Yorkshire.

We spent a good couple of hours wandering round taking lots of photographs.  I especially wanted to look for the locations in the postcards I purchased yesterday.  We had another search in St Andrew’s Methodist Church graveyard and took some more pictures which will appear in future Tombstone Tuesday posts.  I am really disappointed that I haven’t been able to locate any Dawson’s in the graveyard – it remains a mystery to me where they are buried.

This postcard is unused.  There is no publisher name or date.  I am guessing that the date is sometime in the 1960′s judging by the style of the vehicle in the image.  The scene shows a vehicle leaving Gill Lane and joining the main road that runs through the village – Keighley / Colne Road (A6068).

We took this photograph today from roughly the same place as the postcard.  We’re standing in Hartley Memorial Field – a bit nearer the railings because there are a few trees blocking the view further back.  As you can see the first two buildings on the front left of the postcard are not there anymore.  The side wall of taller property has now been painted white.