Thanks to the diligent and wonderful research of top reader and contributor Roger ‘Ziksby’ Jones, here’s the 1901 census entry for the Whittaker family, which may well be of interest to Iris Taylor, who’s searching for information regarding her dad, miner William Victor Whittaker. Roger commented the following on my previous post on the subject:
Ancestry.com finds …
John Thomas death recorded July-Sept qtr 1903 ref Walsall 6b 362.
No record of his death here http://bit.ly/u1U0lf
1911 census finds …
Thomas age 52
Rose Hannah age 49
Richard age 21
Agnes age 21
Frederick age 18
Horace age 12
Victor age 10
Lily age 4.
copy of 1901 census page sent email.
Victor was born 5 June 1901, christened Pelsall 27 June 1901
Married Wednesbury 1942 died Wednesbury 1966
I note that in 1901 John Thomas Whittaker was a “labourer at brick yard”. The Coal Mining History Resource Centre does not list his death, so perhaps it was another sort of industrial accident? You would need to see the official record to be sure. These are easily obtained online from the General Register Office @ £9.25 – reference already given by Roger Jones. There would probably have been an inquest and this would have been reported in the local press.
Usually, having found someone in the 1901 census it’s a simple matter to trace back through 1891, 1881, and so on, but I can’t find this lot of Whitakers anywhere in 1891. (There was another Whitaker family at Heath End in 1891). Thomas, father of John Thomas and William Victor, and family were at Heath End in 1881 and 1871 and at Princes End, Sedgley in 1861. His father John was an engineer at an iron works and was born about 1831 at Gospel Oak. I had hoped to see whether there was some rural origin to link with the name, but no such luck. It would be difficult to trace back further, anyway.
According to the Oxford Dictionary of English Surnames the name Whitaker (and variant spellings) is from white or wheat field. It seems likely, then, that Whitacre Lane, Stonnall, is about farming rather than associated with a person.
I’ve just realised John B Whitaker, age 5, was one of the other Whitaker family at Heath End in 1891.
Andy, can I just take a minute to thank you for all your excellent contributions? Your work on a number of posts – The Leopard, Howdles Lane history – that map from last week – and so many others add massively to the content and information in this blog, and it wouldn’t be the same without you, and the others who contribute so wonderfully like Roger, Caz and David.
Readers like you really make this blog worth doing. Thanks for taking time to research these things and share your knowledge. I owe you a huge debt and quite a few pints.
Every time you comment I learn something new…
Best wishes, and thanks
I, too, am very grateful for Zigsby’s help. Thanks to his initial, thorough and kind research I found out so much about Levi Cooper..More to come on that via Bobs blog
I wonder, Selwyn Terrace..in Heath End, Pelsall..possibly in Victor Street Heath End? This street, with Walter Street, was part of a miners’ “back to back” estate at the time. Might explain the choice of the name of Victor in Whittacker family.
Some of the houses of this little community “fronted “on to the Rushall to Pelsall Road, but most were lost when the road was widened . An accurate description of life there, then is in “No Work Today” a novel by Flora Pearce. I think Google Earth may show some remaining houses;there is a black and white photo of those lost houses on the net “somewhere”.
I hope this will help Iris and wishe her well.
Bob, that is kind of you! Of course, if you didn’t provide such nutritious food for thought my understanding of local affairs would be so much poorer. I find old photos and maps particularly interesting as they help us to understand how we got here, or why things are where they are and as they are.
I’ve read No Work Today. Hard times! If anyone’s interested copies are available online via Alibris UK, where you can buy, usually very cheaply, used and out-of-print books.
Keep up the good work.
Yes Andy,a very good Book to read,around Heath End and Pelsall,time’s were hard in those day’s, we have alot to be thankful,
Thank’s for the information, on Howdles lane, (many question’s un answered)
help,I have just put a post on another part of this site which also relates to here!!so sorry to duplicate,thank you for the info,
Selwyn Terrace,(info from lovely staff at Walsall History Centre)no longer exists,but was apparently around Brewers Terrace?which still exists in Pelsall,(I think it`s by the Red Cow pub)which I understand was Heath End?
Andy,thank you,John B. Whittaker,was my fathers cousin,I didn`t know they also lived in Heath End thank you all.
for Iris, please. Brewers Terrace is just across the main road from Victor Street and Walter Street, in Heath End. You will see the modern Brewers Terrace..just a few flats, on Goole Earth..yes, by the Red Cow
My father was born in Victor Street , in 1911, hence my interest!
All the best
Hello David,thanks for the info.I bet there some history lurking in that Red cow pub !,wonder how long its been there,?do you know if there are any methodist churches in the area still standing/open?,as I have some sunday school attendance prizes(books)which my rels recieved,hence my interest.
the Methodist Chapel on the main road through Heath End no longer exists; but the Pelsall Methodist Church does..in Chapel Street Pelsall..very active. What dates are there on the prizes. There will be names of Sunday Schoool Superintendent and possibly the name of the Minister at that time. The History Centre in Essex Street Walsall may have the church records in their safe keeping/ archives.
Best wishes and good luck in your search. The present local Methodist Circuit ( which includes Pelsall and possibly the old Heath End Chapel) has an archives officer who may be able to help you….
Hi David, thank you again,will get books out and jot down details.I was at the History centre yesterday,actually found the report re;pit accident involving my fathers brother,which was printed on Walsall Observer.1903.
so very productive afternoon! Will try contacting Archives officer,and will post any developments,thanks again. Iris.
Hi I’m not sure if this is still ongoing but I was trying to find information on what pub was in Brewers Terrace ace my grandad Herbert Dilks was born in that street 215 in 1805 and his grandad Elijah Dilks occupation is stated as beer house keeper in the census. I have just noticed the census page on the original post has my family on too.