02 December 2017

Welcome to my Surrey Family Heritage

I first visited Hampton Court Palace in the year 2000, ten years after I permanently migrated to Australia.  Little did I know, at the time, that my Surrey ancestors had lived nearby.  I did not even know, back then, that I had any Surrey ancestors.

At the beginning of the 19th century, my Surrey ancestors lived around Richmond and East Molesey. You may know those areas better than I do.

Even as one of the geographical, historical and ceremonial counties of England now known to be associated with my family history, Surrey is still an area I do not know very well at all, having never lived there.  My view of it has always been as the home of rich commuters to London.

The local borough council, Elmbridge, has a few family history resources.  In fact, East Molesey is close to many other family history resources.  It is not particularly far from Heathrow Airport, or from the National Archives at Kew.  Perhaps I should fly there again sometime soon.

The Elmbridge Museum has an interesting historical overview of the area.  The Surrey History Centre also has plenty of information.  There is also a useful site called exploring surrey's past.

Since 2009, I have welcomed many people here, hoping they will become acquainted with Ancestors Within.

Welcome is a friendly word.  I hope all visitors here are friendly, too.

Are the people of Surrey friendly in the 21st century?

Were the people of Surrey friendly in the early 19th century?

Throughout my family history research, I have made many discoveries through the friendliness and helpfulness of other people.  Although I have never lived in Surrey, neither have I lived in the main county of my mother's heritage, namely Shropshire.

Have you ever been welcomed to Surrey or Shropshire or both?  They are very different areas of England, of course.

What are the locations most associated with your family history?

I have always considered Surrey to be a place of affluence.  When I lived in London, I only once went to Richmond, probably in 1983.  I remember buying a bright orange pair of cotton trousers there.  I frequently wore them on my subsequent travels.  But I remember little else of the place.

But how affluent were my ancestors?  What were they doing in Richmond and East Molesey and why did they move to central London?

I hope the men amongst my ancestors with the first name of Welcome were kind, friendly people.  They all had the surname of Cole and they all lived in London and/or Surrey during the 19th century.

Is there at least one Welcome Cole in your family history?

Many people, quite rightly, do not welcome coal in the 21st century, but none of my Surrey ancestors were involved in coal mining, unlike the Shropshire ones.

In November 2014, I mentioned Shropshire pitmen, poachers and preachers.  My mother's considerable Shropshire heritage has immense differences from the experiences of my paternal ancestors, in many ways.

My mother's great-grandparents were all born in the same county, namely Shropshire.  My father's great-grandparents were born in Ulster, Belgium, Huntingdonshire and London.  The London branch of the family tree originated in Surrey.

At the end of 2010, I invited you to have a genealogical look around this blog and make a comment or two of relevance to my social and cultural history interests.

The earliest record I had of a Welcome Cole, until recently, related to an event at the church of St George in Hanover Square in London.  The church is certainly a wonderfully historical location.

The marriage of that Welcome Cole to Elizabeth Wilson took place in the church in Hanover Square on 21 September 1789.   I have since found out that Welcome was probably born some time around 1756 so he would have been around 33 years of age when he married Elizabeth.

I have been wondering whether his father was called Welcome.  I know his son certainly was.

Welcome and Elizabeth Cole welcomed their son, Welcome, who was christened on 27 December 1805 at Saint Mary Magdalene in Richmond, Surrey.  The family must have lived in Richmond for several years.  A son, Charles, was earlier christened in the same church on 5 April 1790.  Another son William was christened there on 10 May 1795. 

On 5 November 1800, a sister had been christened in the same church, Ann Cole.  Another daughter called Ann had been christened on 21 December 1798.  Presumably that baby died before the other Ann was born.

Welcome and Elizabeth had another daughter, Elizabeth Mary Cole, who was christened at the same church.  The baby was born on 9 July 1803 and was christened on 3 August of that year.

Elizabeth therefore gave birth to several children before the birth her son, Welcome.  Another son, George, was born on 13 August 1807 and christened on 30 September 1807.  Later, on 16 January 1810, James Cole was born.  He was christened at the same church on 9 February 1810.

Were your ancestors living in or around Richmond-upon-Thames during the Napoleonic Wars?

I have no idea why Welcome and Elizabeth Cole and their family lived in Richmond.  Did they have family there?  Did they have a business there?

The local council has a few history notes.

There is a local studies collection there.

There is also the Richmond Local History Society.

There is the Surrey History Centre to explore, too.

There is a possibility that Welcome  and Elizabeth Cole and their family were part of the Cole brewery family of Twickenham.  The Borough of Twickenham Local History Society may have further details.  It has an interesting overview of local 19th century history.

Do you know much about the history of Twickenham?

Have you been to the Twickenham Museum?

In Richmond, there is an area known as Cole Park.

The younger Welcome actually became a publican when he grew up.  He married Sarah Elizabeth Nash in Egham in Surrey on 29 March 1824.   Egham is near Runnymede.  That is historic in itself.  Perhaps the publican Welcome worked in Egham at some point, though that town is a considerable distance from East Molesey.  Do you know much about Egham?

I have long been wondering if there were already publicans in the family in the early 19th century and even in the 18th century.  That would certainly account for Welcome being given as the name of a son in each generation.

In 1824 there were about 230 people living in East Molesey.  Unfortunately, I have been unable to locate any mention of Welcome Cole as a publican in an online history of the public houses of the East and West Molesey

The son of Welcome and Sarah, another Welcome Cole, was baptised at the church of St Mary the Virgin in East Molesey, Surrey on 19 September 1824.  There is a history written about East Molesey and the church of St Mary the Virgin.  It is available through the website of Surrey bellringers.

There is also website about the area around East Molesey.  I have also found information about the inns and public houses also has an interesting map, photographs and many other resources.

In 2009, I briefly introduced you to the post office Welcome and several of my other employed ancestors.  My 19th century family members mainly did very ordinary jobs.

At the beginning of 2010, I welcomed you to the second year of this blog.  I had made many exciting new discoveries over the preceding months.

In June 2010, I mentioned the earliest known Welcome Cole in relation to my fair ancestors in Mayfair.  Family history is often an exciting cultural journey.

Are you familiar with my Continual Journeys blog?

In August 2011, I welcomed your comments in relation to internment in Australia during World War Two.  Learning about the contrasts in family histories can bring the past to life in so many ways, especially when considering policy options for today.

In my view, there is never a place for stereotypes and prejudices in the study of real people, real lives and real societies.  In July 2013, after successfully researching the lives of ancestors, I welcomed you again to Ancestors Within.  I had, by then, been sharing my knowledge of history through this blog, and my other blogs, for quite some time.

In December 2013, I welcomed your knowledge of history in relation to my ongoing investigations.

Were you here in 2012 at all?

The possible age of the earlier Welcome was discovered in relation to a burial record at St Sepulchre in Holborn, London.  The record is dated 15 August 1837.  Welcome was 81 years of age when he died and his residence was listed as Crown Court.

The church of St Sepulchre is just across the road from the Old Bailey, where London's Crown Court is situated.  The court is known as the Central Criminal Court.  I have no idea why the court was listed as Welcome's address in the parish.

His son, Welcome, apparently later worked as an inspector of London post offices but I am yet to find a confirming record of that in the a new postal museum in London.  All I have is a census record.

My local library has a subscription to Ancestry.com so I will probably pop down there to have a further look soon, and to explore Surrey links.

The publican/post office Welcome lived until the age of 87.  He died in Witley near Hambledon in Surrey in 1891.

In January last year, I provided a summary of my Finsbury Park and London family history.  The younger Welcome Cole, born in East Moseley in 1824, was mentioned there.

Do you do genealogy by numbers?  It is probably especially useful to number ancestors if they have the same name.  Welcome Cole was a name which followed through to several generations.  I am not sure if anyone still has that name in the family.

In some records, Welcome Cole has been written as Milcome Cole, Wilcomb Cole and Welcomb Cole.   Additionally, when Sarah Elizabeth Nash became Sarah Elizabeth Cole, it would be many years before her granddaughter, my great-great-grandmother, was christened Sarah Elizabeth Cole.

Welcome, as Milcome, is recorded as the father of a Sarah Elizabeth Cole, too.  She was born in 1836. On other records, his name is correctly written.  His daughter, Sarah Elizabeth, was born on 13 September and christened on 16 October at St Luck Old Street in Finsbury, London.

Unlike the two long-lived two earlier Welcome Cole's, my great-great-grandmother's father had a much shorter life, as did his wife, Fanny.  They had lived mainly in London, not in Surrey.  Young Sarah became an orphan in the family at a very young age.

Sarah was born on 29 September 1863 and christened on 25 October at St Pancras Old Church, like her siblings.

A mystery Welcome Cole was buried on 6 April 1817 in Isleworth, not far from Richmond.  The record in question states that the person was female.  That is all I know about the matter.

Another Welcome Cole died in 1854 in Kingston, Surrey, but which one?

There is a History Centre in Kingston-upon-Thames.  I may need to investigate there.  I already know that several Welcome Cole's were very long lived.

I have just found out that the Crown Court, Bishopsgate of 1837 was probably Rose and Crown Court.  That location possibly became the subsequent Broad Street Station.  Although the funeral of the Welcome in question took place in Holborn he may have died in Bishopsgate.

I have also just found out that Welcome Cole of the General Post Office signed an affidavit in 1838.

If you have any relevant information about my Surrey family heritage, or even my London family history, I would welcome your assistance.

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I especially appreciate historical insights.