Thomas Ainsworth Musgrove

Sunday’s Obituary – Mary Alice Musgrove (1887-1952)

Mary Alice Musgrove is my grand aunt – in other words my grandad’s sister. Her parents are Thomas Ainsworth Musgrove and Ellen Stowell, my great grandparents.

Mary was born on 14 December 1887 in Clitheroe, Lancashire.

I have Mary in all the census returns from 1891 to 1911 and in the 1939 Register. I can see from these documents that Mary was employed all her working life as a “cotton weaver”.

Mary passed away on 31 October 1952.

The following two articles were published in the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times on 7 November 1952.

Mary Alice Musgrove Obituary 1.png

Neighbour’s Find

When Miss Mary Alice Musgrove (65), of 11 Brownlow Street, Clitheroe, did not go to work as usual on Friday morning, neighbours became worried and at lunch time one of them broke into the house and found her lying dead at the foot of the stairs, still in her night attire.

Miss Musgrove lived alone and was employed as a weaver at Sun Street Mill.

A post mortem was held but an inquest was found to be unnecessary.

 

Mary Alice Musgrove Obituary 2.pngMISS M A MUSGROVE

The cremation took place at Skipton on Wednesday of Miss Mary Alice Musgrove of 11 Brownlow Street, Clitheroe, who died suddenly, after a short illness, at her home on Friday. In accordance with her wish, her ashes were later scattered on Pendle Hill.

Miss Musgrove, who was 65, was employed for most of her working life at Jubilee Mill. She worked for some time at Foulsykes Mill, and, since it closed 10 years ago, she had been a weaver at Sun Street Mill.

Her two brothers and two sisters will have deep sympathy in their loss.

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Wedding Wednesday – Joseph Musgrove and Bridget Maria Grainger

Joseph Musgrove is my great grand uncle (the brother of my great grandfather Thomas Ainsworth Musgrove).

Joseph was born on 13 April 1864 to parents John Musgrove and Catherine Ainsworth (my 2x great grandparents).

On 16 May 1891 Joseph married Bridget Maria Grainger in Clitheroe, Lancashire. Bridget had been born on 23 February 1867 in Devon.

On the 9 May 1941 the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times published an article celebrating the golden wedding anniversary of Joseph and Bridget.

Joseph and Bridget Musgrove Golden Wedding.png

FAMILY OF ELEVEN

REARED ON £1 A WEEK

GOLDEN WEDDING MEMORIES OF MR. & MRS. J. MUSGROVE

An insight into conditions of life which obtained fifty or more years ago was given in an interview by Mr and Mrs Joseph Musgrove, of 66 Wilkin Street, Clitheroe, who will celebrate their golden wedding on Monday next. They were married on May 12, 1891, at St James’s Church, by the curate, the Rev Mr Ince.

STARTED WORK WHEN SIX!

Seventy-seven years of age and a native of Darwen, Mr Musgrove came to Clitheroe at the age of six and a half years, and started work in the spinning room at Messrs Dewhurst’s Salford Bridge Mills on attaining his eighth year. He was employed full time at eleven. When sixteen, he went to the print works at Barrow, but left there in 1896 to enter the employ of Clitheroe Corporation highways department, continuing for thirty years, except for a break of six years during which he worked as a mason’s labourer.

All his life, Mr Musgrove has taken a keen interest in both football and cricket, rarely missing a match either at Shaw Bridge or at Chatburn Road. For fifty-six years he has been identified with Court “Royal Castle” (No. 8549) of the Ancient Order of Foresters, and still holds the post of senior door beadle. For eleven years he was one of the borough’s halberdiers. “We had to buy our own top hats and white gloves in those days,” he said, adding: “There were none o’these fancy cloaks and three-cornered hats!”

SIXPENCE A WEEK!

Mrs Musgrove, whose maiden name was Miss Bridget Maria Grainger – she is a sister of the late Mr Luke Grainger, formerly of West View – was born seventy-four years ago near Taunton, Somerset, and came to Clitheroe at the age of sixteen. She learnt to weave at Salford Bridge Mill, where Mr Musgrove learnt spinning, but she had not had charge of two looms long when the mill closed down, and she was accordingly out of work for some time.

“Of course, I had been working for years before I came to Clitheroe,” she said. “Maybe you won’t believe me when I tell you that when eight years old, my wage was sixpence a week.”

Mrs Musgrove added the information that this remuneration was for looking after the smaller children of a well-to-do family, who also provided her with meals. “They regarded the sixpence as spending money, but my mother had to clothe me out of it,” she added.

Speaking of old times, Mrs Musgrove said: “Yes, they were hard, I can’t say I would like to live them over again – not under the same conditions, at any rate.” She went on to say that it was a big problem to bring up a family of eleven on £1 a week. “I can’t tell you how we managed, but we did. It was a hard struggle, but we were fortunate in having good health.”

SUPREME SACRIFICE

Of a family of eleven children, seven – three daughters and four sons survive. Of four sons who served in the last Great War, two made the supreme sacrifice.

All their married life Mr and Mrs Musgrove have been associated with St Mary’s Parish Church. Mrs Musgrove being one of the oldest and a founder member of the Mothers’ Union. Their golden wedding anniversary will be celebrated quietly at home, with just a few relatives and neighbours for tea. “Lord Woolton won’t let us do much more.” Mrs Musgrove said with a laugh.

In conjunction with their many friends, we wish them health and many more years of happiness together.

Sunday’s Obituary – John Musgrove (c1833-1884)

John Musgrove is my 2x great grandfather. He was born c1833 to parents Joseph Musgrove and Jane Dewhurst.

On 6 October 1855 John married Catherine Ainsworth at the Parish Church in Blackburn, Lancashire. They had at least 5 children:-

Susannah – born 2 August 1856 – died 1 February 1869
George – born 20 August 1857 – died 20 August 1857
Thomas Ainsworth – born 12 December 1860 – died 16 April 1928
Joseph – born 13 April 1864 – died 3 June 1948
James – born 5 August 1868 – died 23 November 1868

I have found John on the 1841, 1851, 1861 and 1881 census returns. His occupation varied over the years and he was described as a crofter, a carter and a general labourer. In the 1871 census Catherine is living at 18 Ellen Street, Over Darwen, Lancashire and I assume that John was away from home at the time of the census.

On the 2 December 1858 tragedy struck the family when John’s father, Joseph Musgrove, died as the result of a fall at home. Here’s a blog post about his death – Sunday’s Obituary – Joseph Musgrove

Ever since I started my interest in genealogy and researching my family history my mother has regularly told me of a story about a suicide by hanging somewhere in the past. So I was aware that at some point I may find the evidence.

Back in August this year I finally got round to ordering a copy of John Musgrove’s death certificate. And now I have the confirmation of the family story – cause of death was “suicide by hanging – unsound mind”.

John Musgrove - Death Certificate

According to the death certificate John died at Railway Road, Clitheroe, Lancashire, on 17 September 1884. An inquest was held by the Deputy Coroner J C Anderson on the same date.

The family story was that John returned home one night and the door was locked. Whether he had been drinking, whether John and Catherine had argued, I guess I will never know. Catherine refused to let him in and John replied that he might as well kill himself. If the story is to be believed then Catherine threw him a rope.

Despite my best efforts I have not been able to find any record of the inquest. I have tried Clitheroe library and been to Blackburn library to search the newspaper archives. I’ve also spoken with the Blackburn Coroners Office.  There is a death notice in the local Blackburn paper but no report of the inquest. I discovered during this search that inquest records/reports were considered to be the property of the coroner and were most likely destroyed when the coroner retired.

So sadly it seems I will never learn any more about the tragic events of Wednesday 17 September 1884.

On this day … 16th April

1816 … Edward Bentley was born at Pateley Bridge, North Yorkshire.  He is the maternal grandfather of my wife’s 4th cousin 1x removed.  His parents were David Bentley and Dorothy Gill

1857 … James Dawson was born in Cowling, West Yorkshire.  His parents were John Dawson and Ellen Gawthrop.  He is my great grandfather

1868 … Harrison Musgrove died in Kendal, Westmoreland.  His parents were William Musgrove and Harriot Francis.  He is my 2x great grandfather

1928 … Thomas Ainsworth Musgrove died in Clitheroe, Lancashire.  His parents were John Musgrove and Catherine Ainsworth.  He is my great grandfather