Saturday, April 4, 2009

Results of Research at Salt Lake City - 4 April 2009

Back to working on my Salt Lake City images and I decided to move to Dorset and work on the Protestation Returns for my villages there in the Winterbourne Valley - Winterborne Clenstone, Winterborne Stickland, Milton Abbas, Turnworth, Winterborne Houghton, etc. I have the Poor Rate for these villages and I have a mixture of people from here - agricultural labourers, stone masons, carpenters, and land owners. I shall transcribe the records and see what I can learn about all of them. My great grandmother Blake was Maria Jane Knight and she was born at Turnworth early in January 1850 but I am still trying to find her death date. I have her picture and she has a quiet smile in 1898. Usually people were shy or very stiff in their pictures but she stares forthrightly at the camera with just the hint of a smile in her face. She is wearing her blond braided hair like a coronet around her head, her black dress looking neat and tidy and her shoes are highly polished. My father adored his father's mother and he stayed with them at Upper Clatford a number of times as a child. My father remembered that she had come from close to Blandford Forum (Turnworth is just to the northwest of Blandford) and the name quite intrigued him I rather think.

Maria Jane Knight's parents were Samuel Knight and Louisa Butt and two of her aunts and uncles Knight married two of her aunts and uncles Butt. They were a closely knit family and my father knew his great grandfather Samuel Knight fairly well. They used to visit him every summer by traveling through the New Forest which quite stuck in his memory. Samuel died in 1912 when my father was eight. He was a tall thin white haired man who lived with his eldest granddaughter (my grandfather's oldest sister). The Knight family were stone masons and carpenters, the Butt family were agricultural labourers (Charles (Samuel's father) was a Wesleyan Methodist Lay Preacher) mostly as far back as I can tell, the Arnolds were land owners and other surnames were: Ball, Dashwood, Durnford, Ellis, Foster, Gantrell, Lemon, Long, Malton, Norris, Rolles, Sandle, Vincent and Wellspring. Unfortunately, I am unable to purchase these parish registers and the Bishops Transcripts are quite incomplete. One day I hope to spend a few days at Dorchester reading through the register copies although, to be honest, I would rather be out visiting where they lived.

Tomorrow I shall continue with the Poor Law Rates of these little villages. It is good to be back to the Salt Lake City Records. I would like to carry on through them now until I finish.

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