Yorkshire Rose

1. The First Generation

Paul is a very unusual name among the Thornbers of West Yorkshire in the late 18th and early 19th centuries so it is useful to bring together the records that we have. As more evidence accumulates I hope to create a tree.

Paul Thornber married Betty Harrison on 17 November 1777 at Gisburn, St. Mary.

Five children are known baptised at either Houghton Chapel at Tosside in Gisburn Forest or at Long Preston. It would appear that the family moved during this period within the locality, possibly as tenant farmers or farm workers.

Mary d. of Paul and Elisabeth Thornber 18 Apr 1778 at Houghton Chapel
Stephen s. of Paul and Elizabeth of Wigglesworth, bapt. Long Preston, 20 Feb 1780
John s. of Paul and Elizabeth Thornber of Shaw, 23 Sep 1781 at Houghton Chapel
Ann d. of Paul and Elisabeth of Wigglesworth, bapt. Long Preston, 11 May 1783
Elizabath, d. of Paul and Elizabath Thornber or Sidgswicks, Houghton, 16 Mar 1785

Paul's wife Elizabeth was buried on the same day as the baptism of the youngest daughter and must have died in or shortly after childbirth.

Burials: Elizabath wife of Paul Thornber of Sedgewicks, 16 March 1785. Tosside Chapel

Given the uncommon nature of the name Paul among the Thornbers it is likely that the same Paul was the one who married in 1788, which would be about three years after he lost his wife Elizabeth.

Paul Thornber married Ann Blackey or Blackley on 15 December 1788 at Gisburn St. Mary.

Paul was probably the one buried at Giggleswick in 1830, which puts his birth at about 1756.

Paul Thornber aged 78 yrs of township of Rathmell par Giggleswick on 26 Dec 1830 at Long Preston. (this puts Pauls birth c. 1756)

2. The Second Generation

There are two important points to help us in the next generation. The first is the rarity of Paul as a name and the second is the low occurence of Stephen.

2.1 Mary Thornber daughter of Paul Thornber, baptised 1778

There are records of two illegitimate children of a Mary Thornber at Houghton Chapel, Tosside. William died in infancy. There are a further two records in the same period at Slaidburn for a Mary Thornber who has illegitimate children..

William, 1st son, illegitimate, born 28 Sept 1796, bapt. 16 October 1796, Houghton Tosside.
Elizabeth, 1st dau. illegitimate, Long Gill, born 14 Jan 1803 and bapt. 13 Feb 1803 at Houghton, Tosside.

Burial William Thornber son of Mary Thornber of Brayshaw, an infant, at Giggleswick on 13 November 1796,

John Blackwell Thornber, spurious son of Mary Thornber of Easington, 14 October 1798, baptised at Slaidburn
Ann Thornber, spurious, daughter of Mary Thornber of Easington, baptised 19 April 1807 at Slaidburn.

Information from Sylvia Wood in Queensland may cast further light on Mary and her daughter Elizabeth.  In the census of 1841 an Elizabeth Cottam, born at Easington, was living at Bulcocks in Tosside and was a cotton weaver, aged 35 (ages rounded down to nearest five).  She was with Mary Thornber, aged 60 and Ann Thornber aged 30.  There were five Cottam children aged from 6 to 15 and also John Howson, aged 75, Lawrence Waddington, aged 65 and Alice Waddington aged 15.   The dates for Elizabeth Cottam and Mary and Ann Thornber fit for the ones mentioned above and Elizabeth could be the one who married John Cottam in 1825.

Elizabeth Thornber of the monastery of Sawley, was married to John Cottam of this parish, by banns, on 21 May 1825, at Bolton by Bowland, by John Jennings, curate, witnesses were Jabez Sanderson and William Cottam.

There was also a Mary Thornber, a weaver of Sandy Syke, who had an illegitimate son Ralph baptised at Long Preston on 2 May 1822 and buried aged 7 days on 11 May 1822 at Long Preston.  This may be a different Mary as by this time Mary daughter of Paul would be about 44 years old.

2.2 Stephen Thornber son of Paul Thornber, baptised in 1780

Stephen is also a very uncommon name among the Thornbers at this period and I know of no other Stephen baptised or born in the late 18th century. There are two marriages and in the absence of the evidence of other Stephens it could well be the same man who married twice.

Marriage: Stephen Thornber married Ann Foster on 24 September 1810 at Gisburn St. Mary.

Baptism: John Thornber son of Stephen and Ann Thornber, bapt. 1 Nov 1812, Gisburn

Marriage: Stephen Thornber of Sawley Extraparochial married Elizabeth Latham of the Township of Grindleton on 3 November 1823 at Waddington St. Helen's. Witnessed by William Shuttleworth and John Hanson. Bishops' transcripts.

Baptism: Elizabeth dau. of Stephen and Elizabeth, labourer, Sawley, born 17 October 1823 and bapt. 25 January 1824. Grindleton Bishops' transcripts.
Baptism: Stephen s. of Stephen and Elizabeth Thornber born 27 June and baptised 23 July 1828 at Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Clitheroe.

The census of Clitheroe Region 1851 Census. HO/107/2255 has been examined and the following entry is relevant showing Stephen with wife Elizabeth and a son Stephen.

Folio No. 8: Rimington, Lowers Gill

Stephen Thornber head, m 71 Ag. Lab. Preston Yorks (Age fits with birth in 1780, Preston in Yorks is Long Preston)
Elizabeth Thornber wife, m 63 Bolton, Yorks (Bolton, Yorkshire would be Bolton by Bowland)
Elizabeth dau 27 Weaver, cotton Sawley, Yorks (age fits with birth about 1824)
Stephen son 23? Ag Lab Sawley, Yorks (if age was 23 it would fit with birth in 1828. (See The Third Generation below)

In the GRO Deaths index there is a record in June quarter of 1854 for Betty wife of Stephen Thornber (Ref: 8e 140). She died 6 June aged 66 fitting with the age on the census for Elizabeth.

There is also evidence in the 1891 census for Gisburn Forest for a Stephen Thornber aged 33 at Lower Aigden, born in Gisburn Forest. He had a wife, Mary, aged 37 born in Wigglesworth and two daughters, Elizabeth aged 4 and Edith aged 1. This Stephen was born about 1858. There are entries at Hougthon Chapel, Tosside as follows:

Stephen Thornber, illegitimate s. Elizabeth Thornber, spinster of Flass, 13 Dec 1857
William Thornber, illegitimate s. Elizabeth Thornber, weaver of Flass, 13 March 1853.

The mother, Elizabeth Thornber, may be the daughter of Stephen Thornber who was born about 1824 and was mentioned in the 1851 census shown above. Stephen son of Elizabeth would be the right age to be father of the following two children baptised at Houghton Chapel, Tosside in Gisburn Forest:

Elizabeth Thornber, daughter of Stephen Thornber, farmer and Mary of Lower Aigden, born 7 June 1886 and baptised 12 September 1886
Edith Mary Thornber, daughter of Stephen Thornber, farmer and Mary of Lower Aigden, baptised 11 September 1889

2.3 John the son of Paul Thornber, baptised in 1781.

John is a very common Christian name among the Thornbers and I have spent much effort on trying to associate each baptism entry with relevant marriages and deaths using parish records, census records where available, death certificates and wills. Without rehearsing all the arguments for the identification of each John, I present the data on a John who has a son called Paul, whom I believe to be the most likely candidate for John son of Paul.

John Thornber married Ann Charnley both of this parish on 29 May 1810 at Kirkby Malham itpo Larence Tattersall and William Moorley.

There is another couple called John and Ann in this period. John Thornber married Ann Mount, also in Kirby Malham in 1799. At this time John the son of Paul would have been only 18. John Thornber and Ann Mount had five children baptised at Giggleswick near Settle between 1804 and 1818. We have some details of a family tree from the papers of Caleb Howarth, a conveyancer in Marsden, near Colne. The death certificate for John, shows he was 76 in 1846 and therefore born about 1770. This identifies him as John son of Richard and Jane Thornber, baptised on 2 September 1769 at Gisburn. This family is covered on a separate page.

Children of John and Ann Thornber (nee Charnley) were baptised variously in Kirby Malham, Gargrave and Long Preston where John was a farm labourer or farmer.

Elizabeth d. of John and Ann, husbandman of Raven Flatt, par of Kirkby Malham, born 14 Nov and bapt. 9 Dec 1810 at Long Preston.
Thirstan Thornber son of John and Ann, born 21 Oct. bapt. 22 Nov. 1812, Gargrave
John son of John & Ann Thornber of Bellbusk, labourer 10 Sept 1814, Gargrave
Paul son of John and Ann Thornber bapt. 7 Jan 1816 at Gargrave.
John son of John & Ann Thornber of Bellbusk, farmer, 17 May 1818, Gargrave
Ann, dau. of John and Anne Thornber of Gargrave, farmer, 26 Nov 1820, Gargrave
Jane dau. of John & Ann Thornber farmer, Bonber Hill, par of Gargrave, bapt at Long Preston on 3 Nov 1822.
Thomas Charnley s. of John & Ann Thornber of Bonber Hill, labourer, 18 Mar 1825, Kirkby Malham.
Bridget d. John & Ann Thornber of Bonber, farmer, bapt. 24 June 1827, Kirkby Malham
Martha d. John & Nancy Thornber of Bonber, farmer, bapt. 31 Jan 1830, Kirkby Malham
Sarah dau. of John and Ann Thornber of Bou**ter House, farmer, 15 July 1832, Gargrave
Mary dau. of John and Ann Thornber, farmer of Coniston, 7 June 1835, Gargrave
William son of John and Ann of Bomber, farmer, 18 June 1837, Gargrave.

Note that the address of Bonber hill is given for baptisms that took place in both Long Preston and Kirkby Malham although it was in the parish of Gargrave.

Three burials that are relevant to this family have also been identified.

Thurstan Thornber of Bank Newton, aged 33 buried 10 May 1846, Gargrave.(GRO for June Quarter of 1846, Skipton district, ref. 23. 455.)
Bridget Thornber of Bank Newton aged 18 on 10 May 1846, Gargrave.
Jane Thornber of Skipton aged 24, buried 17 Feb 1847 at Gargrave.

The following Census return, provided by Beth Merryweather in New Zealand is of interest. John is the right age to be born in 1781 and the Tosside location fits the known baptisms of John son of Paul. In addition he is married to an Ann and has children born at Bonber including three already known from the baptism records. Ann's age, assuming she is his first wife puts her born about 1793 and so only about 17 at the time of her marriage.

1851 HO/107/2278, Barnoldswick Yorkshire, Banknewton, folio 133, page 8 at Moseber Bottom

John Thornber head, m 70 farmer of 130 acres Tosside
Ann Thornber wife, m 58 Ravenfleet
Thomas Thornber son, u 26 labourer Bonber
Martha Thornber dau, u 21 ditto
William Thornber son, u 14 labourer ditto
Ann Thornber granddau. 1 ditto

3. The Third Generation

The census of 1861 in the Clitheroe area (RG 9/3087) gives an entry for a Stephen born about 1828 in Sawley. A Stephen is known to have married in the Registration District of Clitheroe in the March quarter of 1856. (Ref: Clitheroe 8e 291 ). He is the only Stephen in the GRO Marriage Index between July 1837 and the end of 1860.

Folio 21 page 36 property 92 at Waterloo

Stephen Thornber head, marr 32 Ag Lab Sawley. (Age fits with birth about 1828/9)
Jane wife 27 Gisburn Forest
William son 6 Gisburn Forest
Isabella dau 2 Worston

There are records at Houghton Chapel Tosside in Gisburn Forest as follows:

Robert Thomas Thornber, daughter of Stephen Thornber, labourer and Jane of New House, born 16 Feb 1865 and baptised 18 June 1865
Margaret Thornber, daughter of Stephen Thornber, labourer and Jane of New House, baptised 7 June 1868

By the time of the 1881 Census we find this second family at Hall Bank, Bolton by Bowland on film RG11 at 4168 Folio 59 Page 5. The age of 52 is consistent with the age of 32 in the 1861 census and he is born in Sawley. There is no mention of Robert Thomas but there is a Margaret Ann, who could be the one baptised in 1868 at Tosside. Her birthplace is given as Gisburn Forest, which fits that location.

Stephen THORNBER Head M Male 52 Sawley, York, England Farmer Of 18 Acres & Mason
Jane THORNBER Wife M Female 47 Gisburn Forest, York, England
John THORNBER Son U Male 20 Clitheroe, Lancashire, England Farmers Son
Mary Jane THORNBER Daur U Female 18 Gisburn Forest, York, England
Margaret Ann THORNBER Daur U Female 14 Gisburn Forest, York, England
Martha THORNBER Daur Female 11 Bolton By Bowland, York, England Scholar
Frances THORNBER Daur Female 9 Bolton By Bowland, York, England Scholar
Agnes THORNBER Daur Female 5 Bolton By Bowland, York, England
Eliza THORNBER Daur Female 2 Bolton By Bowland, York, England
John ROBINSON Boarder U Male 40 Wigglesworth, York, England Agricultural Labourer


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