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canal boat people

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


Teresa Report 26 Apr 2007 20:27

I am looking for any contacts with people who had relations who worked on the boats, during the industrial revolution. I have quite a lot of info that i am happy to share with other people trying to find there ancesters. Or If you have anything to add to my collection of boat families, I would be pleased to here from you. I am a direct decendent to the canal people from the very start of the canal age. most of therse families are related in one way or another., therefore I must have quite a few relations that i dont know. it would be nice to find a few. From Teresa


DIZZI Report 26 Apr 2007 20:32

hi Lock keepers . barge owners

Dee the Bibliomaniac

Dee the Bibliomaniac Report 26 Apr 2007 20:36

I researched a family who had several watermen on the Thames in the 1880's. Several families intermarried and served their apprenticeships under each other Dee x

Rambling Rose

Rambling Rose Report 26 Apr 2007 21:49

Dee...did you bu any chance come across any Fishlocks? Lightermen/watermen on the Thames (esp around Chiswick/Brentford area. Rose xxx


Mommylonglegs Report 26 Apr 2007 22:18

Hi, saw this thread earlier. I too had Watermen in my family. My great GG Grandfather and all his children and ancestors were Watermen on the Thames, mainly in Greenwich. I would love to find out more about them. Jenny.

Dee the Bibliomaniac

Dee the Bibliomaniac Report 27 Apr 2007 07:35

Hi Rose, I didn't come across that name, sorry ;-)) Jenny, what names were you looking for? Dee x


*Sharm Report 27 Apr 2007 07:58

Hi Teresa, I have several boatmen in my family on dads side they were boatbuilders (not in this contry) and on mums side they lived and worked the canals in Yorkshire and Lancashire. I too would love to know more about them sadly one of my ggreatgrandfathers is nowhere to be found on the census im now thinking the whole family lived on the boats, moved around and evaded enumeration. what names are you looking for and in what part of the country? Maybe we could help each other. Scarlett.


Beryl Report 27 Apr 2007 08:30

Hi Teresa Many of my paternal ancestors worked on the barges on the Leeds/Liverpool canal. Some were originally from the Burscough area of Lancashire - their names were Aspinall, Spencer and Hilton. from Beryl


nell Report 5 Apr 2011 14:39

Hello. I am trying to find out anything about my Gr Gr Gr Gr Gr Grandad and Grandmother - Miles and Emma BERRY they were lock keepers in Warwickshire (Offchurch I think) does anybody know where I can get this confirmed _ I can't find any records on here for them - I have Miles born in app 1799 and Emma (nee Gender) born app 1800 - they had a daughter called Hester or Ester born pp 1825 I can't find any records for her other than a sons birth. Any information will be greatly appreciated.


InspectorGreenPen Report 5 Apr 2011 14:58

My wife's great great grandparents were both from canal boat families. His family carried china clay up from the Severn along the Worcester and Birmingham Canal . Her family worked from the opposite direction carrying ironstone along the Caldon Canal and thence into the Black Country.

By the mid 1870's both families had given up the canal life and settled in West Bromwich where the Iron Foundries presumably provided a better living.


RStar Report 10 Apr 2011 19:16

I have Wray's and Sladen's who were boat people. Jet who used to post on here had a website dedicated to the boat people genealogy. Im still in touch with her if you want me to get a message across.


DIZZI Report 11 Apr 2011 09:12




RutlandBelle Report 11 Apr 2011 10:44

Just in case Nell does not come back on here have sent a PM re Probate for Miles Berry, Lock keeper
also 1861

Name: Miles Berry
Age: 62
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1799
Relation: Head
Spouse's Name: Emma Berry
Gender: Male
Where born: Stockton, Warwickshire, England

Civil parish: Offchurch
County/Island: Warwickshire
Country: England

Street Address:


Condition as to marriage: View image

Registration district: Warwick
Sub-registration district: Radford
ED, institution, or vessel: 7
Neighbors: View others on page
Household schedule number: 9
Household Members: Name Age
Miles Berry 62 Lock keeper
Emma Berry 60
Esther Hamilton 35 daug married
Thomas M Berry 8 grandson


RutlandBelle Report 11 Apr 2011 11:08

Nell someone has Miles in a public tree on Ancestry.

They have him married to Emma Newitt, Stockton, SOUTHAM, Warwickshire, England St Michaels Parish Church 22 Nov 1891 (from Family search)

George Berry the son mentioned on probate was born 1823 in Stockton Southam, Warks.


Peter Report 9 Feb 2013 07:38

Looking for any Wilkinson family how were boat people from Acton Cheshire
worked on Leeds Liverpool canel


LadyScozz Report 9 Feb 2013 08:35

I also have canal boat people, mine are from Falkirk in Scotland



FootieAngel Report 9 Feb 2013 08:39

My husband has boat ppl but hes no longer around they originated in Mongomery in Wales and worked the Birmingham and Black Country canals they settled in West Bromwich The main lot were Morris Im pretty sure the mother was a Jennings. I havent looked at them for years. Theres a museum in Northampton I never got around to visiting x


+++DetEcTive+++ Report 9 Feb 2013 09:35

Peter - It's probably best if you used the 'Search All Tree' function on this site, then you can contact anyone who has the same names in their tree as yourself.

Also, you can use the pink rosette shown against the names in your tree which will indicate if the system thinks it may have found a match.

Chances that anyone related spotting this thread, is rather remote. ;-)


JustJohn Report 9 Feb 2013 09:51

Canal people and those who carried to canals in West Midlands crop up a bit on my tree.

One is Peter FLAVELL (1833-1914), boat owner born Halesowen. He married Charlotte WILLIAMS (b 1832 Barnet Lake, Herts).

Peter was son of Major FLAVELL born c 1806 Gorsty Hill. Know his wife (BAKER) but nothing much else about him (actual birth, actual death etc).

And canal villages like California and Slack Hillock crop up.


DazedConfused Report 9 Feb 2013 10:28

I would recommend anyone looking for relatives who worked the Thames and canals to go and join Rootschat.

They have sections dedicated to travellers and a section to Watermen etc.,

If you have never tried Rootschat - it is FREE to join and is just like the boards on here but no Tree. They have lots of dedicated boards from Wars to Graves and Census with many others inbetween.

There are more than a few of us from here on there. Do give it a try.

There are many on the War threads who are only interested in just that and not necessarily genealogy and their knowledge is amazing and the county threads are fantastic.