Month: July 2011

On this day … 28th July

1700 … Henry Hurtley was born in Kirkby Malham, Yorkshire.  His parents were James Hurtley and Agnes Lawson.  He is my 5x great grandfather.

1806 … James Espley and Martha Silvester were married at Stoke on Trent in Staffordshire.  They are my wife’s 3x great grandparents.

1978 … Joseph Dawson died at Otley hospital in Yorkshire.  He is my grandfather.

Tombstone Tuesday – Fred and Bessie Espley

This plaque marks the spot where the ashes of Fred and Bessie Espley are buried.  The location is the graveyard of St. Clement’s parish church at Sutton on Sea, Lincolnshire.

Fred and Bessie are my wife’s parents.

Fred was born in Smallthorne, Staffordshire in 1909 and died in Sutton on Sea in 1977.

Bessie was born Bessie Britliff in Grimsby, Lincolnshire in 1919.  She died in 2001 also in Sutton on Sea.

St. Clement's Church

Austwick – Postcard #12

Here is another postcard from my collection.  This time it’s the Church of the Epiphany and cross in the village of Austwick in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales.

The postcard is unused and is in very good condition.  There is no publisher and no printer identified on the front or the back of the card.

It looks like a really quiet rural scene.  However it is much different today with a two lane main road running alongside the church.

© Copyright James Bentall and licensed for reuse under a Creative Commons Licence

My interest and connection with Austwick is through some of my Paley ancestors who were born in the village.

As far as I can tell the church dates back to the 1800’s.  The building is said to have been a former lecture hall and was consecrated in 1841.

The building is an English Heritage Building and is Grade II listed.

Austwick has it’s own Parish Council and the website has lots of information about the area including a link to some fabulous Dales Walks.

Surname Saturday – Stirzaker

I have four people with the name Stirzaker in my family tree.  It’s not a name I have researched yet.  So the earliest person I have is Richard who married my great aunt, Isabel Musgrove in 1927.  The marriage is registered at Preston in Lancashire.

According to the website surnamedb Stirzaker is a “curious” surname of old Scandinavian origin.  It is said to be a locational name from a place called Stiracre in the parish of Garstang in Lancashire.

The place name is believed to come from the old Norse personal name “Styrr” together with the Olde English pre 7th century “aecer” meaning ploughed field or cultivated land – in old Norse this would be “akr”.  Therefore – Styrr’s akr.

Early examples of the surname include: Johannes de Steresaker (Yorkshire, 1379), and William Steresaker, “The Corpus Christi Guild”, York, dated 1477.

In modern times the name has four spelling variations: Stirzaker, Starzaker, Sterzaker and Sturzaker.

On September 5th 1567, Anthony Stirzaker and Elisabeth Philipson were married at Garstang, Lancashire, and on November 6th 1568, Alice Stirzaker married James Orton also at Garstang.

In 1664, Robert Sturzaker of Garstang was recorded in the “Exchequer Depositions”, Lancashire, and in 1668, Evan Pilkinton, of Sturzaker, in Garstang, was noted in the Lancashire Wills Records held at Richmond.

The surname appears in London Church Registers of the 17th and 18th Centuries: entries include the christening of Ellen, daughter of Joseph and Isabella Stirzaker, at St. Andrew Holborn, on January 14th 1703.

The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William de Steresacre, which was dated 1332, in the “Subsidy Rolls of Lancashire”.

British Postal Service Appointment Books

There has been much chatter in the genealogy world this week about the British Postal Service Appointment Books just released on Ancestry.

I have done some searches for the main names in my family tree.  There are plenty of Dawson’s in the area of Yorkshire that I am interested in – so I need to look at those when I have more time.

However, there were only fifteen Espley’s plus three Aspley’s and two Epsley’s.  So I have captured all this information in a new table in my spreadsheet.

The Espley’s are:-

Wm. – 1894, 1895 and 1896 in Wellington, Shropshire

Jessie – 1910 in Wellington, Shropshire working on the telephones

Wm. – 1913 in Chester

William E – 1922 – the location isn’t recorded.  Employed as certified wireless watcher.

Victor G – 1933 in Bletchley as Postman manager.

Audrey M – 1935 at the Central Telegraph Office

Victor G – 1935 in Luton and 1937 in Bedford

John S – 1940, location not recorded

Frederick J W – 1947 in Stoke on Trent as a postman

Leslie – 1949 in Southampton

James F – 1953 in Stoke on Trent as a postman

If anyone can identify these particular Espley’s I would love to hear from you.