LONDON-L ArchivesArchiver > LONDON > 2005-08 > 1124576685
From: Martin Willcocks <>
Subject: RE: [Lon] How far do you branch?
Date: Sat, 20 Aug 2005 16:24:45 -0600
Caroline made a very good point. Tracing known branches forward can
lead you to living relatives, some of whom may have information you
never dreamed was available.
Earlier this year, through a list of Essex surnames, I located people
researching my greatuncle's family in the Harwich area, and another
branch from a great-greatuncle. The former branch included two contacts
in different lines both of whom sent me very helpful information on this
branch of my family. During his, lifetime, my father never mentioned
any of his three uncles to his children, as far as any of us can recall
44 years after his death. But they have been found through census
research. Henry William Squire WILLCOCKS was the oldest of the four
brothers, my grandfather was next, and two younger brothers followed
him. A direct descendant of Henry sent me a ten page document mostly
written by Henry some time between his wife's death in 1915 and his own
in 1929. It was continued by one of his seven then living daughters and
probably by later descendants, well into the 1980's. Henry had
evidently made a serious effort to write down all he knew about his
family, including descriptions of all his grandparents, his parents,
wife, brothers and their families, and his own nine children (both his
sons died young, one in a drowning accident) and their marriages and
families. His daughter appears to have consolidated the birth data onto
one nearly empty page of his notes, then continued with more information
such as the date of his death and there is also a page of one
descendant's family birth dates taken from her mother's address book.
The whole story is highly interesting and contains much data that I
could confirm through FreeBMD, but some that was a little off (such as a
birth registered in 1878 that he has down as 1879. The 1881 census also
has her age as 3, pointing to early 1878. Since he wrote this down at
least 33 years later, it may have been a slight lapse of memory.
I had already located nearly all the children on FreeBMD, but had not
noticed the two that had died young. I had also found a couple of the
marriages of those children, but had not gone any further. This
information has therefore fleshed out this line considerably, and I have
two new cousins, to boot!
The other line was that of William Robert WILLCOCKS, Henry's uncle, who
had been a Workhouse Master between pre-1881 and 1894 at Bishops
Stortford, Herts, and apparently before that in Colchester, Essex. I
had only recently found the 1861 census entry in Shoreditch, where he
was a Parish Pay Clerk, but had been completely unsuccessful in finding
him in 1871. My informant here had been to the Herts and Essex Record
Offices and researched the workhouse records , something I can't easily
do from 5,000 miles away! The 1871 census pages for the Colchester
workhouse were apparently missing. But she had found a good deal of
data besides that confirming his being Workhouse Master there from about
1867. Her husband was a direct descendant of the youngest son, born in
Colchester, and she sent me numerous photos and other information about
the workhouses and the places the family lived and where they died and
were buried. She also connected to one of the WW I soldiers whose
burial I had found in CWGC previously and wondered about any connections
- there were quite a number of WILLCOCKS deaths in France and one of my
uncles served there (but survived) Another helpful person went to
France this summer and sent me pictures of the grave and cemetery where
William's last surviving grandson was buried.
I have to say I think looking at the side branches has proved highly
rewarding in both these cases. I have also traced the other two
greatuncles lines as far as I can. Arthur Squire WILLCOCKS raised a
family in Datchet, where he was the pharmacist for nearly 60 years until
he retired in 1940, and as he married in 1894 I have only the birth data
for his five children, again confirmed by Henry's document. Louis, the
youngest brother, married twice but appears to have had no children from
either marriage and seems not to have been very well in touch with Henry
after his move to Bristol area (St. Decumans civil parish in 1901), but
Henry confirmed that he had no children from either marriage. The only
other major line left is from another great-greatuncle Samuel, whose
children and some grandchildren I have researched but so far have not
found any living relatives. Henry did not include Samuel in his tree.
Samuel had thirteen children, three of whom died in childhood in the
1860's possibly from cholera. They lived in Sheerness, before moving to
Battersea, when Samuel was promoted to a senior Admiralty position. His
son Walter Morgan WILLCOCKS became an Alderman of Surrey County Council
and was famous for saving Norbury Park from developers. He was made
Deputy Lieutenant of Surrey, and died in 1937 only a few months before I
was born. The only descendants I have found were Winifred and other
daughters, who were unmarried at the time of his death. If anyone on
this list is related to this branch I'd love to hear from you!
There are yet more names from the earlier generations, some of whom were
in the London area. I haven't found any descendants of Sidney Herbert
WILLCOCKS and his wife Kate, for example. But I do know of other
WILLCOCKS names in the London area, that may be relevant to my search.
Please feel free to ask, if you have any WILLCOCKS connections!
Taylorsville, UT, USA.
|RE: [Lon] How far do you branch? by Martin Willcocks <>|