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Saturday, 2 April 2011

Great Great Grandfatther Henry Danson

This is the fifth in a series of articles tracing the direct line of my Danson ancestors. 

The birth certificate of my great grandfather James Danson provided the names of his parents -  Henry Danson, yeoman farmer of Trap Farm, Carleton and Elizabeth Calvert.

Parochial Records took me further back and the birth at Carleton of Henry Danson  on 25th July 1806 - baptised a day later in St. Chad's Church, Poulton.

Sole entry on a page (right) in the family bible   reads “January 4 1827 Henry Danson Son of Henry Danson Born 25 of July 1806”.  This entry was dated just after the death of Henry' s 15 year old brother James, so is there a significance in this?
(See the blog posting - Danson Bible Scribbles - 6th March 2011)

Henry Danson junior married 6th April 1831  at St. Chad's Church, Poulton Elizabeth Calvert of St. Michael's Over Wyre, daughter of Nathaniel and Grace Calvert. 

Initially I was only aware of two sons to Henry (junior)  and Elizabeth - my great grandfather James and his younger brother Peter who I was told had died as a child and was buried in Poulton churchyard.

It took research in the census records to establish that the family was far more extensive, with 9 children born in 20-21 years - five girls, Elizabeth, Grace, Mary, Margaret, Ellen, followed by sons John, Henry, then another daughter Jane and finally my great grandfather James  If you are wondering about Peter this is a puzzle - to be revealed in another blog posting!

With a population in Carleton of just 378, the family was easily traced in the 1841 census to Trap Farm and a household of 10 including Henry & Elizabeth and family, Henry's brother Peter and two servants. 

It was noticeable that the children were named after family members, with the two eldest daughters taking their grandmothers' names. All the children were baptised at St. Chad's Church, apart from second daughter Grace who was born in the picturesque village of Wrea Green.   How did that come about, as I have been unable to trace a baptism?  

Trap Farm in c.1998
The family were still at Trap Farm (left) 10 years later in 1851, with Henry described as a farmer of 31 acres in a household that had grown  to 13,  Grace had left home, but eldest daughter Elizabeth was there with her husband, and Peter was described as unmarried brother and annuitant.

With these details found so easily,  it was frustrating to "lose" the family from Trap Farm in 1861 (this was before census returns online).  What had happened to a seemingly prosperous farmer?  Had there been a downturn in agriculture?

Henry, Elizabeth and family were eventually traced to the parish of Layton with Warbreck, near Blackpool, where Henry was a carter.   There seemed to be a trend of married daughters returning to live at their family home with their husbands - this time living with her parents was third daughter  Mary, a laundress and her carrier husband William Henry Gaulter.

The 1871 census revealed a complete change of occupation as Henry was toll keeper at Shard Bridge Toll Bar.  The Shard Bridge opened in 1864 across the River Wyre to replace the ferry.  Rejoining the family at this time was youngest daughter Jane with her daughter Ellen and husband Thomas Cardwell, a groom;  also Jane's sister Ellen with her illegitimate daughter May.  

By 1881 the Danson household was much depleted.  Mother Elizabeth had died in 1879, with daughter Margaret, widowed twice, returning to act  as housekeeper, with her brother  Henry  and niece May.

Henry Danson senior died a few months later on 27th October 1881 aged 75 years, with Poulton Monumental Inscriptions recording his burial on 1st Novemer in St. Chad's Churchyard.

St. Chad's Church, Poulton-le-Fylde
A photograph taken by my uncle Harry Danson

See Also:
Danson Discoveries - 4th Feb. 2011  
Grandfather William Danson - 17th Feb. 2011
Great Grandfather James Danson - 25th Feb 2011
Great Grandfather's 11 Children - 10th March 2011

To follow - Great Great Grandfather's 9 Children

1 comment:

  1. Hi Susan,
    You have a lovely blog and this was an interesting article about your Dansons.

    I'm glad my SEO for surnames article was helpful for you.

    Happy Hunting!


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