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Trying again !! James Greenwood 1832 - 1883

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


JaneyCanuck Report 30 Dec 2007 21:41

In 1851, we have William living with mother Betty:

Name: Betty Greenwood
Age: 42
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1809
Relation: Head
Where born: Crompton, Lancashire, England

Civil Parish: Crompton
Ecclesiastical parish: Shaw
County/Island: Lancashire
Country: England

Registration district: Oldham
Sub-registration district: Royton
ED, institution, or vessel: 1h
Household schedule number: 24

Betty Greenwood 42 - Washerwoman
William Greenwood 15 - Cotton Fustian Cutter

And we seem to have Betty's daughter Hannah living with an aunt and uncle:

Name: Hannah Greenwood
Age: 12
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1839
Relation: Niece
Where born: Pendleton, Lancashire, England

Civil Parish: Read
County/Island: Lancashire
Country: England

Registration district: Burnley
Sub-registration district: Padiham
ED, institution, or vessel: 4
Household schedule number: 12

Lawrence Ashworth 45
Mary Ashworth 44
Hannah Greenwood 12

And the IGI has this undocumented submission of a marriage:

Marriage: 29 JAN 1827 Whalley, Lancashire, England
Batch Number: 7116027

This could be a different Hannah; a little more tracery is needed.

Looks like Hannah's birth could be one of these:

Births Jun 1838
GREENWOOD Hannah Ashton & c 20 136
Births Dec 1838
GREENWOOD Hannah Ashton 20 81

And I would think that the Mary Whitehead in the household of Betty Greenwood in 1841 is the Mary Whitehead in the household of Susannah Whitehead in 1851.


JaneyCanuck Report 30 Dec 2007 21:55

This looks like Betty Greenwood in 1861:

Name: Betty Greenwood - Washerwoman
Age: 54
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1807
Relation: Head
Where born: Crompton, Lancashire, England

Civil Parish: Crompton
Ecclesiastical parish: Goodshaw
County/Island: Lancashire
Country: England

Registration district: Oldham
Sub-registration district: Crompton

with son William two doors down:

Name: William Greenwood - Fustian Cutter (employing 10)
Age: 25
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1836
Relation: Head
Spouse's Name: Hannah
Where born: Oldham, Lancashire, England

Civil Parish: Crompton
Ecclesiastical parish: Goodshaw
County/Island: Lancashire
Country: England

Registration district: Oldham
Sub-registration district: Crompton
ED, institution, or vessel: 8
Household schedule number: 17

Hannah Greenwood 25
William Greenwood 25

So what we're after here is William's marriage.

I'd bet on this one:

Marriages Dec 1860
Greenwood William Oldham 8d 1043
Whatmough Hannah Oldham 8d 1043

-- on a search at FreeBMD for marriages, William Greenwood to Hannah, 1851-1861, Lancashire; this is the only one in Oldham, and obviously, given his age, it would be later in the decade rather than earlier.

So there you go. Get that certificate and see who William's father was.

If it was Richard, you owe me big time.

If it wasn't ... well, I grovel in shame. ;)


JaneyCanuck Report 30 Dec 2007 22:00

Oh, and get those Hannah Greenwood birth certs -- I don't see any option but to get both of them.

If the parents are Richard Greenwood and Betty Whitehead -- well, you'll continue to owe me big time. ;)


Simon Report 30 Dec 2007 22:26

Katty B

You are on fire today.

Your hypothesis could be true.
I will order the Birth Cert and marriage cert

Yes I do have access ancestry again now. Thats where I picked up the James in Duckinfield Cheshire.
Remember I do not know for sure where James 1831/2 was born as on the 1861/71/81 census's there are 3 different birthplaces. Probably Lancashire but hey Duckinfield is less than 20 miles from Oldham.

I will follow your leads though and check other GR members sites.

How do PM someone on Ancestry. It would be useful to ask why they corrected James Surname. Do they have an interest in the family?


JaneyCanuck Report 31 Dec 2007 00:55

To PM on Ancestry -- just find that record by searching for the name and details -- actually, the only thing you have to search for is:

grenwood greenwood

and this will bring up the one person who has both surnames, your James (and his household).

When you click on the individual record, the corrected name will be clickable right under the wrong name.

Click there, and in the correction details you see will the name -- oh aargh! There should be a "contact this person" link, to send a private message. There isn't. that is most likely because that person has not "activated" her account. I know I hadn't, for months of adding corrections to records, because I had no clue it had to be done.

I tried clicking on her name and the "contact this person" link -- and got:

"We're sorry. The user you would like to contact (JuneTaylor23) has elected not to be contacted by anyone regarding information posted on this site."

Well, there's the mark of a jerk, to my mind. I have one of my own: a jogee36 who has made dozens of corrections to my Littler family, never saying a single word beyond "known family". The link for that person's profile doesn't even offer a contact link -- I think that what happened was that s/he had a trial subscription and spent two weeks scurrying around doing all this, and then wandered off. My guess is: a Mormon on a mission.

In a couple of cases, s/he made corrections to names in households where I had already made changes -- without so much as a nod to me by PM while passing through. Extremely rude, if you ask me.

What I did, once I found that individual making corrections not only to Littlers of Leicestershire (my mother's mother's father's family), but also to Coopers of Nottinghamshire (my mother's mother's mother's name, but I don't know enough about the family to say whether they're connected), was make a slight variation to one of the names and post this as the "explanation":

"jogee36 would you PLEASE CONTACT ME!!! You have entered corrections to numerous Leicestershire LITTLERs and Nottinghamshire COOPERs saying they are "known family". The Littlers in question are my own ancestors and their descendants: one of those Littlers (John, Hose, 1873, son of Mary Corner and William) married a Calverton Cooper (Alice, 1864, daughter of Mary Ann Fallowell and Reuben) and became my gr-grparents (see in 1901 in Mansfield). What is our connection??? and will you not share the information you have? If you "activate" your account, you can contact and be contacted. Please do."

The only conclusion I have been able to draw is that if this person is related to both of my mother's mother's parents, then s/he must be ... me.

So you could try that. In 1871, "correct" James Greenwood's name to "Jas Greenwood", and call it a "variation". And post a request that junetaylor23 get in touch with you through the system -- or include a non-identifying email address in your notes. (Get one at gmail if you don't have one.)

It's possible that she's a "professional" genealogist. I contacted someone about a correction once, and she turned out to be unrelated, and just to have noticed the error in passing. I have also been contacted by a genealogist working for someone who turned out to share a set of ancestors with me (who then never bothered to get in touch). Or she could be someone else who just saw the error while looking for/at another person -- I make random corrections all the time, but now I add "I'm not related" if that's the case, so I don't get people's hopes up.

I also had someone contact me once to inquire about one of my hugely fascinating mystery people -- the sister we never knew my gr-grfather had, who was in the cast at the Adelphi Theatre in 1871 and then married a rich guy, had 3 kids, and disappeared. I was ecstatic at the contact; I wrote back immediately. And the next day. And a week later. And two months later. And I have never had a reply.

Anyhow, so much for that lead, eh? But off you go to order certificates. I'll be waiting!


JaneyCanuck Report 31 Dec 2007 01:22

You sly one you. You've already put Betty Whitehead in your tree -- but note that her DOB varies -- 1807/1809 in 1851/1861 -- probably more accurate than the 1811 in 1841.


Simon Report 31 Dec 2007 08:39

Katty B

I only put Betty's name in to see if it threw up any connections, In the notes section I explain this is only a potentail at this stage. I have a few like that in my tree. Or a name and other potential marriages.
My tree is evolving all the time. Putting names in helps


JaneyCanuck Report 31 Dec 2007 18:27

Oh, I don't dispute putting her in your tree! I've done the same myself, noting that it's on spec, for anyone I give access to. I only had potential grx4 grparents Joseph and Mary there for a few days before I had to relinquish them to someone else, after contacting the only other person here who had them in her tree. ;) And their real descendants don't even spell their surname right ... But shortly after that, my own grx4 grparents showed up on a search at familyhistoryonline, getting deported from Dorset back to Wiltshire under the Poor Law.

If only I could figure out who their son married, and why his son was born in Bristol (or so he said in censuses) and ended up a propsperous tradesperson in Canterbury while the father spent two decades in the workhouse in Mere ...


Simon Report 31 Dec 2007 22:03

I do hope James is the son of Betty Whitehead and Richard Greenwood with sister Hannah and brother William is my decendent, I will be very pleased.
As well as the Broadbent's and Ashworths connections.
All good Lancashire surnames.

If i find through birth certificates that Hannahs and Williams father was Richard Greenwood and I take it as read that the James living with Susannah Greenwood was Betty's son and therefore Richard's son. How can I be sure that the James Greenwood living in Bilston in the 1850's,60's,70's and 80's is the same James.
Other than the 1861 Census states Oldham as birthplace there is nothing else that links them.
I / we can't find another Richard with son James anywhere else though.
But how can I be sure.
Find other living decendents maybe. Can't find anybody else with a Betty with kids William and Hannah never mind the missing James who never lived with his parents and ended up working as a skilled boilerman 130 miles from where he was born.
How and where was he educated.

Katty if this is all true you should turn to either police work or clairvoyancy


JaneyCanuck Report 31 Dec 2007 23:07

Ah yes, how can we be sure?! If I had the answer to that ...

I'm always rather amused by people who have "PROOF" of such-and-such a relationship. That's no fun.

Have you read my tale?

When I started this stuff 3 years ago, I knew the names of 7 of my 8 gr-grparents, and a few locations to go with.

My mother was born Monck, her father having immigrated to Canada as a young child with his parents in 1909. All we knew about his father was that ... he said ... he'd been a ship's cook like his father Francis before him ... and that either he or his father (I can never remember) was, oh yes, the son of a black sheep younger brother of Viscount Monck, the governor general of Canada around 1867. Or his father.

Well, through the magic of fuzzy search functions, I found nothing of any Ernest or Francis Monck, but I found an Ernest Hill with father Francis, an apparently prosperous mining agent, who matched the little I knew of my Ernest - year of birth and possible place of birth - in all particulars. And had a sister with the exact same unusual name as one of Ernest's children. And on and on with the piling up of "coincidences".

Will I ever have PROOF that my Ernest Augustus Monck was really that Ernest Augustus Hill? Well, my uncle's DNA might prove that our Ernest wasn't a Monck (or was ...), but Hill, there are so many of those buggers, failing to find a match might not mean anything.

Meanwhile, just yesterday I was musing over an early batch of Canadian Moncks, an Irish Capt Charles Stanley Monck (a classic Viscount-clan name) said, in early 19th century documents, to be a cousin of the Viscount. Wondering about a son of his. Looked back at Ancestry, and found a younger brother of the Viscount/Gov Gen whom I'd looked at and discarded two years ago, because he died at the Battle of Alma in September 1854. I'd long thought that the newly discovered sister, Ada Lennox Monck born Ada Lennox Monck Hill, was born c1856. Turned out she lied to her husband and the census-takers. She was born in Q4 1854. So I start to think about shelling out for DNA tests again ...

Proof? Who needs it? It's too much fun looking for it. ;)

Yes, it is odd that your James would have come from such humble, abandoned child-labourer origins and become a skilled worker like that. Note that his brother William, if such he was, employed 10 people at one time.

They may have been like my father's line -- in 1792 the family gets expelled from Dorset as burdens on the public purse, in 1869 their son dies in the workhouse, in 1891 his son is listed in the Canterbury trade directory as a cabinetmaker. And then *his* grandson (my grfather) marries the gr-grdaughter of the sister of the grfather of Viscount Sankey, Lord Chancellor of England 1929 and the Law Lord who wrote one of the most important decisions in Canadian constitutional history. Yes indeed, my grx5 grparents' gr-grson. My second cousin four times removed. I just learned last spring.

While the sister of my Monck gr-grfather (my mother's side) was marrying a rich guy and living on 50 acres with 8 household servants, my gr-grfather was hauling crates in a biscuit factory. Fat lot of good being descended from that Viscount line, if we were, did us.

I did find a living fellow Hill descendant, just this month. She had always been told that her ancestor, my Ernest's elder sister, was a Miss Montmorency from France. I've found her as a Miss Hill mysteriously and unprovedly born in Jersey to the Cornwall/Devon Bond/Hill couple ...

But as far as "educated", I really think you should be thinking on-the-job training. They didn't have vocational schools back then. My Monck grandfather in Canada became a highly skilled printing press operator, after starting his working life at 13 "in the jam factory" and certainly having no formal education beyond that -- although these days it takes 3 years of community college to qualify for the work he did. Well, it did 30 years ago. Now it takes a computer and photoshop.

If you're curious -- I did my undergrad in French and philosophy. Went to law school. Practised law for about 13 years. Went back to something I'd done for a year right out of law school for the next 15 years, to date, that involves law and language and sometimes training. Did one of those career tests about 10 years ago, and it said I should be a lawyer or a language teacher ... and if those didn't suit, I should try genealogist!


Simon Report 31 Dec 2007 23:19


You absolutely astound me.

How you put Jame's story together is like you knew something or just vefy clever like a clairvoyent.

I don't think this is a trick though just a very good lateral mind.


JaneyCanuck Report 1 Jan 2008 00:05

One thing I'm wondering -- and I've been hunting around for: do you suppose James was in the military and that's why he isn't findable in 1851? It could also be where he learned a trade.

The name is so unfortunately common ... I did find this at

Military records > Medal rolls : The Indian Mutiny Medal Roll (British Forces) 1857-1859.

Given Names(s) James
Surname Greenwood
Rank Private
Regiment or Ship 34th Foot (Cumberland)

Doesn't look like the sort of work to lead to boiler making, but you get my idea. Especially if he'd been in the navy, maybe, this would connect up.

In 1851, the navy / vessels were not included in the census. That would be a very plausible explanation both for his absence and for his acquisition of a trade involving boilers, I might surmise.


Simon Report 11 Jan 2008 20:49


Sorry for not replying to this sooner. I missed your reply.

I have been looking for James on the 1851 and still can't find him.

It is plausable that James was in the military. Somewhere in the military they would have had boilers. They were new fangled though in the 1840's. Richard Trevithick didn't invent a commercial boiler until about 1812. I'm not sure when the navy had them.

I have not yet received the Birth and marriage certs.


JaneyCanuck Report 11 Jan 2008 21:14

Oh lord, the Sipiros was you??

(So many people have the same usernames here I don't even try to sort out who's who.)

... Well now I can't find the Sipiro thread I posted in some time ago. Deleted? Why do people do that???????

Seriously, if that thread has been deleted, I'm peeved beyond words. I spent a lot of time on it, and really nobody is entitled to delete the work that other people did.

If it wasn't you, did you see it? I don't think it sounded like you; must have been the cousin.


Simon Report 11 Jan 2008 21:53

I didn't see it, but Moody Blue has been looking for Sipiro variants today.

My cousin is a woman not called Michael


JaneyCanuck Report 22 Jan 2008 23:07

So Simon -- got any Greenwood certificates yet??

I'm still dying to hear. ;)


Simon Report 23 Jan 2008 10:27

Katty B

Sorry no not yet, I hope you have calmed down from someone deleting the Sipiro thread.
My cousin in Scotland ordered 4 certs. She has 3 back but only one conclusive and thats a bith cert. It didn't tell us anything. The marriage certs have right names, DOB's and place of birth but different fathers.

Thanks for your interest. Your help and enthusiasm is much appreciated


Simon Report 23 Aug 2008 19:07

Is this the reason for no 1851 Census record for James

Manchester & Lancashire FHS

Unfilmed Census of 1851. MLFHS volunteers worked for 14 years to transcribe the water-damaged census returns for much of Manchester and virtually all of Salford together with parts of Ashton-under-Lyne and Oldham. The published data offers a choice between a transcript of the recovered details for a named individual, or for an additional charge, an image of the reconstituted enumeration book page on which they appear. All recovered data is now available on the site.

I am going to contact them, it might hold the answer I am looking for.


JaneyCanuck Report 5 Sep 2008 19:04

I'm baaaack! ;)

Simon -- would you put the certificate info here that you sent by PM? I was getting a bit confused that way ... A nice list would help.

I did spend some more time poking around the IGI and such, especially looking for some Whitehead-Greenwood connection (because I'm just not ready to give that one up!), but no more luck.


Simon Report 5 Sep 2008 19:47

Hello glad your back, what happened to you?

I too have looked and looked but nothing. Something is wrong somewhere.

1851 Census might be the answer. I am planning going to the Manchester and Lancashire Family History Society on the 27th Sept. They transcribed a large part of the 1851 census for Lancashire that was water damaged.

The Marriage cert info was this.

William Greenwood aged 25 married Hannah Watmough aged 25

December 31st 1860

Both of Fir Lane Crompton Oldham

Williams father Henry Greenwood Weaver

Hannahs father Henry Watmough Coaster

William was a fustian cutter

A James Cheetham and Abraham Jackson were witnesses