Upstairs Downstairs

From Humble Beginnings to the American Dream

A Zoom presentation by Jackie Depelle Saturday 21 November

Notes from Susanne Young

Well, what a wonderful way to spend a gloomy November Saturday afternoon, listening to one of popular speaker Jackie Depelle’s case studies. Maureen Heseltine welcomed Jackie to our gathering of 40 plus Zoom attendees from near and far. Tracing the story of her husband’s great grandfather Richard Powley, Jackie’s presentation was filled with additional background information, illustrations and useful websites.

Richard was born in 1860 in Blofield, Norfolk, the son of agricultural labourer Joseph and wife Hannah. At the age of 20 Richard has left the family and is employed as a footman at Stanfield Hall, Norfolk. In 1884 he married Charlotte and in 1891 he is recorded as a butler employed by the Procter-Beauchamp family at Langley Park, Chedgrave. Sadly, his wife died in 1895 leaving Richard with 5 young daughters. Shortly afterwards Richard commences employment in the United States and can be found crossing the Atlantic from Liverpool to Boston in 1900 aged 40. Better employment opportunities and wages in the US meant that Richard could send home money for the care of his daughters who were now living with his sister.

Richard worked as butler to the immensely wealthy Clarence Hungerford Mackay at his grand residence Harbor Hill at Roslyn near New York. He was able to visit his family fairly frequently and in 1911 he is in the UK at a private nursing home being treated for cancer. He returned to the US in 1912 to the home of his eldest daughter who emigrated there. Richard died in 1916 and is buried at Chedgrave with his wife.

During his career Richard would have witnessed the grandeur of American society as well as intrigue – Mackay’s wife eloped with her husband’s physician and their daughter eloped with Irving Berlin. Mackay lost a good deal of his fortune in the 1929 Wall Street crash and Harbor Hill was subsequently demolished. Richard left a considerable sum of money to his family when he died proving the American dream for the son of an impoverished ag lab from Norfolk.

A warm thank you was given by Chairman Lynda Balmforth.

The Families of Halton Gill Part 6

By June Tingey

The Robinson Family 

The first reference to the family was in the parish register in 1688 when Isabel, daughter of Thomas of Nether Heseldon was baptised. Other children followed and in 1702 his daughter Ann was baptised. Thomas was described as a poor man. In 1730 the death of Thomas, a pauper of Cosh, was recorded followed by the death of Jane in 1736, a pauper of Foxup. Another family was recorded in Arncliffe at this time, that of Ralph with a son Christopher born in 1698 and daughter Ann in 1700.

In 1737 Mrs Sarah Dawson married William Robinson of Chatburn. Although it is unlikely, it is possible William was the son of Thomas of Heseldon, whose son William was born in 1695. In 1764 a John Robinson married Frances Hammond, was he perhaps the son of William? They lived in Litton and by 1778 6 sons had been baptised. No more is heard of the family until the death of Frances in 1804, followed by John in 1811.  In 1805 John married Ann Calvert and had 2 children: Alice baptised in 1808 and John the following year, when his father was recorded as a farmer. Nothing more was found about the family. They do not appear on the Muster Roll of 1803 nor in the 1841 census.

The Stockdale Family

The first record of the family was in the parish register in 1744 when Margaret married William Foster, yeoman. In 1778 the baptism of William son of William and Jane of Haltongill was recorded followed by Anthony in 1780. It was probably this same couple who were living at Owlcotes in 1786 when son Robert was baptised, followed by Michael in 1792 and James in 1795. They were recorded as a poor couple. Jane died in 1798.

The Muster Roll gives William a farmer of Haltongill, single and between 30-49 years, so was this William’s son who was older than his baptism suggests? William senior appears to have moved to Penighent, where he was living when his son James died in 1802. He then married Mary Cooke in 1805 but sadly she died 4 years later.

In 1810 a William married Ann Moor and one year later a daughter Alice was baptised. In 1799 the death of Anthony’s son John was recorded grandson of William and Jane.

The 1841 census gives Michael son of William and Jane a cattle dealer with Henry Knowles. In 1861 he was an agricultural labourer for Henry Knowles. Buy 1871 he was still living at the home of Henry as a retired cattle dealer.

The Tennant Family

Although a well known name in Upper Wharfedale there were not many families in Littondale. The first recorded member of the family in Arncliffe parish was Roger who was listed on the Flodden Roll in 1503. In 1756 Margaret was a tenant of Fountains Abbey.

The first record of the family in the parish register is the marriage of Henry to Ann Metcalfe in 1679. In 1717 James the son of James was baptised.

Miles Tennant son of John of Buckden became curate of Arncliffe church in 1681. In 1689 he married Mrs Judith Lodge at Linton. They had 6 children. Henry the youngest went to University College Oxford when he was 18. He became curate of Carleton and eventually Arncliffe, where he remained for the rest of his life.

In 1679 a Thomas Tennant married Mary Spark and in 1739 a miner married Jane Watson. There is no record of any children from either marriage in the register.

In 1813 James a farmer married Mary Scaife and lived at Arncliffe Cote. They had 3 children baptised between 1814 and 1818. A second James, a farmer of Hawkswick, married Elizabeth Betty Smith in 1828. They had 2 children baptised in 1829 and 1831. Yet another marriage of a James took place in 1835, this time to Agnes Procter.

The 1841 census for Haltongill shows Christopher aged 67 an agricultural labourer at Foxup, with his wife Mary aged 55 and 2 children, Allen age 5 and Mary age 3, it does seem quite possible they were grandchildren. In 1861 Allen was working as a farm servant for M. Stockdale. In 1871 another Christopher was farming 131 acres at Haltongill with his wife Ann and 4 children between 1 and 6 years old. By 1881 only 16 year old Ann was left in the whole of Littondale working as a domestic for Thos Cowen, farmer at Foxup.

The Todd Family

The family was recorded in the C16th when Richard and Lionel were tenants of Fountains Abbey occupying land at Haltongill. There are very few records of the family in the parish register. The earliest was in 1633 when Francis married Ellen Ward of Burnsall.

In 1672 the baptism of Elizabeth daughter of Francis of Haltongill was recorded, followed by baptisms of 4 children between 1673 and 1685. It seems likely that these were the grandchildren of Francis and Ellen.

In 1685 Francis of Haltongill died. It is fairly safe to assume this was Francis the elder as in 1705 a second Francis died at Haltongill. The death of Elizabeth, servant of Mr Lambert occurred in 1675. Possibly she was the sister of the second Francis.

A document in the Raistrick collection no.577 refers to a farm at Haltongill being released from Miles Todd yeoman of Haltongill to Henry Knowles. A second document no.581 concerns the release of another farm with land at Haltongill to Ellen and Jane Todd spinsters and John Armitstead to John Clerk of Heseldon. No doubt these were Miles’ sisters though Jane’s baptism was not found in the register. Miles died in 1734 and Jane in 1776. There are no further records of the family in Littondale.

The Wilson Family

The earliest information relating to the family at Haltongill was found in a document no.568 in the Raistrick collection dated 1681 which refers to John Wilson, gent of Eshton receiving £300 for land in Lower Bargh which was part of the tenement of Nether Heseldon. The parish register records the death of William, son of George in 1688 and the following year the death of Catherine, wife of Adam. In 1695 William possibly the father of George and Adam died.

Another 3 documents relating to George are in the Raistrick collection no.572 dated 1682/3 refers to the transfer of the lease of various parcels of land in Haltongill from John Ellison to George Wilson yeoman of Haltongill. The other documents nos. 574 & 576 are related to the transfer of land from the Hammond family of Arncliffe and others to George. The first dated 1682/3 refers to sheep grazing land on the East Moor and the second was land mainly meadow with barns around Angram dated 1709. George died in 1743 and Frances a widow in 1747. Probably she was the wife of George.

The only other Wilson family at Haltongill was that of Miles who was the curate there. Miles married Dorothy Lambert in 1737. They had 2 children who died in 1743. Dorothy died in 1774 and Miles 2 years later.

Other families were recorded lower down the dale. The earliest was the baptism of Jayne daughter of Thomas of Hawkswick in 1671. Mrs Christopher Wilson died at Hawkswick in 1723. Possibly she was the mother of Christopher who was living at Hawkswick when his son John was born in 1759, followed by Margaret in 1761 and Christopher in 1765. There must have been another Christopher living in Hawkswick at this time as in 1756 Jennet wife of Christopher died, followed by Christopher in 1766.

In 1674 John of Arncliffe had a daughter Ann baptised but she died 2 years later. It is interesting to see that in 1767 John Wilson schoolmaster from Coniston was buried and in 1773 Abraham of Kilnsey was buried at Arncliffe. Presumably they had been brought back to their native parish.

There are no records of the family on the 1803 Muster Roll or the 1841 census. An Edward/Edmund Wilson however, was involved as a witness in a dispute in the early C19th between the Foster family who owned Nether Heseldon and Robert Preston who had a right of way through part of their land. E. Wilson aged 43 was employed for carting lime over a period of 16 weeks in the summer of 1806.

The Winterburn Family

The family must have been in the area for over 300 years. The earliest known record is of Johannes Wynterburn who was recorded in the West Riding Poll Tax Returns of 1739. A document no.555 in the Raistrick collection gives details of the lease for possession from Th. Franckland to John Winterborne of Appletreewick, husbandman of a farm at Haltongill of 20/- ancient rent, dated Jan1667/8. It is not clear where John was actually living at this time as the earliest record in the parish register was in 1675 when Mary daughter of John of Haltongill was baptised. Was this the same John or were there two? Mary was followed by Thomas in 1769. Sadly Mary died when she was 13 years old followed by her mother a year later. It is likely that this was the same John who conveyed land to an older son Anthony in 1689 document no.571 in Skipton library.

In 1692 Anthony had a son John baptised, followed b Margaret in 1695 and Thomas in 1702 when Anthony was living at Foxup. In 1695 another John of Haltongill married Grace Carr. It seems likely that he was another son of John who probably died in 1702 the year before his grandson John, son of John was baptised. However another John died in 1711. There is no reason to think this was the grandson as the father’s name is not given, so is likely to be the second generation.

In 1707 Anthony appears to have financial problems. He mortgaged his farm by lease to Samuel Hardy to secure £130, document no.573 in Skipton library. An addition was made to this in 1711 when he and Leonard Redmaine were described as tenants of the property. By November 1718 the mortgage was repaid but only after Anthony had again mortgaged what was presumably the same farm, this time to secure £200 from Robert Mason of Horton in Swaledale, referred to in another document as Horton in Ribblesdale. The family seems to have left the area in the early C18th.

The Families of Halton Gill Part 5

By June Tingley

The Preston Family

The earliest records found of the family in Littondale were in the Mormon Index. There appears to have been a large number of Prestons in Malhamdale throughout the C17th and no doubt they spread over into Littondale. Here there were 4 families, those of John, William and Joseph of Litton and Christopher who married Agnes Brukes. These families are not recorded in the Arncliffe parish register and all lived at the lower end of the valley.

The first of the family mentioned at Halton Gill was that of William who married Agnes Ayrton and had a son James born in 1720. The first record of the family in the parish register was the baptism of William and Alice’s son James baptised in 1725. It is possible that the first James died as some note would otherwise have been about his age.

Also recorded in the register in 1725 was the marriage of Robert of Penighent to Susan Atkinson and the baptism of their children. Three of the children died in infancy. Those who survived were William baptised 1726, Susannah 1739, Jonathan 1742 and Christopher 1745.

William a yeoman married Mary Birtwhistle in 1748 and in 1750 William a carpenter married Grace Webster. To find out which William belonged to which family would need more research. One William had a son William baptised in 1752 but the child died the following year when his father was recorded as living at Penyghent, probably Robert’s son. They later had a daughter Elizabeth baptised 1756, Jonathan 1758 and Peggy in 1760. The other William lived at Litton and had 4 children, Elizabeth baptised in 1757, Martin born 1759, Robert 1761 and James in 1765. The latter 3 were only recorded in the Mormon index. Strangely both Williams died in 1795. Robert’s daughter was at Dent when she died in 1778. She was buried at Arncliffe and said to have been from Penighent. The marriages of Jonathan are difficult to understand without a great deal more research.

A Mary wife of Jonathan of Blissmire died in 1770. We then have the record of Jonathan marrying Mary Coates in 1775. A child Robert of Halton Gill was baptised in 1776. We then have Ellin baptised in 1778 and William in 1779. Mary died in 1781 and in 1782 we have another marriage between Jonathan and Mary Metcalfe. Another child John was baptised in 1784. It appears that each marriage was the same Jonathan, son of Robert.

There were several other families lower down the dale at this time, 3 Johns, one a tailor, a Matthew and a William of Hawkswick, to mention but a few. In 1770 Robert son of Christopher of Penyghent was baptised followed by Susannah, Nanny, Betty and Peggy.

The 1803c Muster Roll gives Robert of Haltongill, farmer, class 1 ie single and under 30. By the time of the 1841 census no Prestons were recorded at Haltongill and many of the family had gone from lower down Littondale.

In 1891 John son of John was living at Lower Garth/Sawsgarth with his wife Elizabeth and 3 children John, Annie and Edith. He was said to be living on his own means but the parish register describes him as a farmer.

The Procter Family

The Procter family were tenants of Fountains at the end of C18th. The Fountains Abbey lease book contains an agreement between abbot Marmaduke and Geoffrey Procter dated 1519 concerning land and property in Canton in Craven, Scothrop, Malham Hall, Malham and Litton. They were all separately held from the Abbot and convent by knight service for a rent of 9/6d. Geoffrey was apparently in arrears ‘To the great peril of his soul but paid 40/- into the Abbot’s hand’ at the time of the agreement. He also had the lease of Rough Close on Malham Moor which he acquired in 1496 and had permission to sublet.

In 1524 Geoffrey willed to his son Richard ‘The fermying of the Benefice of Arncliffe’ which was to pass to his grandsons Henry and Eustace. In 1668 a Thomas Procter was living at Cosh. His children and grandchildren were baptised at Hubberholme Church between then and 1710.

In the late C17th there were 2 families living at Nether Heseldon, those of Roger and John, both with children. In 1707 Stephen and his family were recorded in the parish register as living at Penighent. He had twins baptised but unfortunately neither of them survived. In 1724 a Stephen with family was living at Litton possibly Stephen from Penighent. If Stephen moved from Penighent his place was probably filled by James, possibly from Cosh, who was there when his daughter was baptised in 1718.

In 1722 William a yeoman married Mary Clarke, local family. Another William was a shoemaker and lived at Foxup as did James in the 1720s. In 1738 John a yeoman, possibly son of James of Penighent married Ellin Preston and was father to another pair of twins, John and Ellinor. When his wife died in 1757 John was recorded as a webster. There was also a Roger and family at Litton during the second half of the century.

Another John lived at Arncliffe Cote, probably a tailor and married to Agnes. It is likely that their oldest son William born1758 became a blacksmith at Arncliffe. In 1792 Richard was recorded in the parish register as living at Blissmire. Meanwhile in Haltongill Adam (baptism not found) had a son James baptised in 1786 and then moved to Foxup where at least 6 more children were born.

In 1793 Marmaduke possibly son of John of Litton a miner married Elizabeth Tempest. The Procter family had probably had mining interests since purchasing Bordley Moor from Earl Clifford soon after the Dissolution. At least 9 veins of lead cross from Hawkswick Clouder to Procter High Mark at the edge of the Bordley parish. Marmaduke was working an area known as Merrybottom, above Cote Gill between 1791 – 98.

The only member of the family to appear on the Muster Roll of 1803 was John, class 3 17 – 29 years with no more than 2 children under 10. The likelihood is that he was a farmer at Haltongill, married to Ellen. In 1803 they would have a 2 year old son Anthony and a baby daughter Jane. They had another son John who was recorded in the 1841 census when he was working the farm with his mother and younger sisters Ann and Ellen.

Anthony, John’s oldest son was recorded as a farmer at Foxup in 1841. He was living with his wife Jane and 6 daughters between the ages of 3 and 14. In the 1851 census John is not recorded. Ellen, head of the family at Haltongill, now 73, was farming 290 acres. Her daughter Ann was a house servant and granddaughter Ellen who was born at Horton was still living there, a schoolgirl of 13. Anthony was still at Foxup with his wife and youngest daughter still at school. His 5th daughter Ann was recorded as a servant working for J. Hornby and William Brook, who is also recorded as being employed by his mother.

By 1871 Ellen, now 93 was still reputed to be farming 250 acres. However Anthony was now living there and farming 230 acres and his sister Ann was housekeeping. Also living there was Ann Todd, granddaughter working as a domestic servant with John Hartley aged 14 and Allen Thomas man servant.

One other family was recorded in Artncliffe in 1851, John aged 57 and unmarried worked as a cotton breaker. His sister Mary lived with him as housekeeper and a niece Jane aged 13 worked as a cotton piecer. Looking at the 1851 census it is easy to see why there were no Procters left by 1891 as there were no males to carry on the name.

They seem to have been a relatively wealthy family, though some were working as farm labourers. It is interesting to see they were not all relying on farming. At least 3 were tradesmen, shoemaker, tailor and blacksmith. A few were involved with textiles and one with mining.

The Redmayne Family

In 1513 Arthur Redyman of Hawkswick with bowe and horses harnished equipped for battle was included on the Flodden Muster Roll. The family were tenants of Fountains Abbey. They are reputed to have come from Levens Hall, Kendal and according to one of their descendants, one of the family married into the Lindley family of Harewood Castle.

The earliest entry in the parish register is the marriage of Richard to Mary Atkinson in 1688. Ten years later the baptism of James, son of Leonard of Cosh later of Foxup was recorded followed by Christopher in 1700, Richard in 1702, Agnes in 1704 and Margaret in 1707. In 1711 Leonard junior had a daughter Ann baptised. Between then and 1727 several more children were baptised but it has not been possible to tell to Leonard they belonged.

There was also a John at Cosh whose son James died in 1699. Another family was living at Litton, that of Richard in 1699. In 1739 Christopher yeoman probably son of Leonard of Cosh married Ellin Dinsdale. In 1739 another John was living at Haltongill when his daughter Margaret was baptised.

Various marriages took place in the middle of C18th but with no children recorded until 1799 when Anthony of Litton had a son Thomas baptised, followed by Mary in 1803 and John bin 1805.

A document no.226 in the Raistrick collection in Skipton library shows an agreement dated Feb 1818 between the Foster family and John Redmayne late of Sannet Hall but now of Haltongill, yeoman, for the lease of a farm with outbuildings and land for 3 years at a rent of £140 pa. The land was in Haltongill and also Litton.

Anthony of Litton appeared on the 1803 Muster Roll but none of the family was recorded in the 1841 census. In the 1861 census a Thomas born at Guiseley was working as a shepherd. He later married Isabella …… and they settled at Arncliffe Cote. Were they descendants of the original family?

The Families of Halton Gill Part 4

By June Tingley

Knolls/Knowles Family

This was one of the oldest and probably one of the largest families in Littondale. More than 30 men from the dale were listed on the Flodden Muster Roll in 1513, 7 of these were from the Knolls family. At the Dissolution in 1536 the land at Foxup belonging to Fountains Abbey was held by 7 tenants, all with the surnames Knowles, 2 Johns, Alice, George, Roger and 2 Matthews. One wonders which if any went to Flodden and was Alice the widow of one of them?

A document YAS DD 121/1/2 m.56j dated 29th May 1571 – Eliz 1 records: Lancelott Knolles haith felled drye spyere for building of a little house. The first reference to the family in the parish register of Arncliffe was in 1597 when Mary of Haltongill married George Ellison. On 26 January 1612 Lyonall signed a document passing land to his sons Lancelott and Henry. It included Ingramels at Angram. Angram then occupied by Lyonell, document no.562 in the Raistrick collection at Skipton Library. A second document no.567 records a Lancelott purchasing land in 1679 probably the same person who was renting land jointly with John Ellison from Lord Clifford in 1682.

In 1672 Henry of Foxup married Ellen and they had a daughter Grace baptised in 1673. It was probably this same Henry who died shortly after as Grace and her mother were living at Darnbrook when Grace died in 1693, followed by her mother a ‘pensioness’ 2 years later.

In her book ‘Off to the Dales’ J. Lofthouse described how a farmer at Foxup showed her a double fireplace in an old barn which has obviously been an old dwelling but now in a poor state of repair. Over the door was the inscription M.M.K. 1686, obviously a Knowles home. Although this has now been removed from the barn it has been carefully positioned over the entrance to the garden.

The end of C17th and the beginning of C18th seems to have been a bad time for the family. Many deaths were recorded, not only at Haltongill and Foxup but at Penyghent, Litton, Arncliffe Cote and Hawkswick. One of the better recorded families at this time was that of Joseph a yeoman of Foxup who married Alice Tennant in 1751. They had 5 baptisms recorded and subsequently 3 of the children were married at Arncliffe. The youngest son Benjamin had a son Joseph who married in 1779 Ruth Whiteley, a family from Halifax and had at least 3 children baptised at Arncliffe.

A document 577ji in the Raistrick collection records the release of a messuage in Haltongill to Henry a yeoman who was living at Middlehouse, Malham Moor. Another document no.582 relates to Heberside being passed to Joseph Drake of Over Heseldon from George Knowles and Thomas Ellison.

One of the Hawkswick families that of Henry who died in 1707 remained there until at least 1824. Henry’s grandson Henry married Jane Wilson in 1781. They had a son Dickey Wilson and in 1824 the baptism of Wilson Knowles was recorded. Presumably Dickey also became known as Wilson, as in 1803 Wilson Knowles was recorded as a farmer on the Muster Roll.

By the time of the 1841 census there were only 3 Knowles families in the parish. Most of the Knowles seem to have been relatively wealthy with the exception however of Margaret a parish apprentice who died in 1700 and Leonard who died in 1705 a pauper.

Lambert Family

The first of the Lambert family known to be in the area was Josiah who was vicar of Arncliffe from 1661 – 1681. He was the son of Anthony of Skipton. It has not been possible to ascertain whether or not he was the ancestor of the rest of the Lamberts in Littondale.

In the document collection of A. Raistrick there is one no.570 which relates to the Feoffment of a piece of land with barn at Haltongill from Michael Buck to Christopher Lambert yeoman of Kilnsey dated 1682/3.

The first record of the family in the Parish Register was in 1692 when Elizabeth daughter of Thomas of Haltongill was baptised followed by Martin in 1696, Thomas in 1698, William in 1702 and Dorothy in 1705. In 1704 Isabel Lambert married George Atkinson and in 1763 a Francis was witness to the wedding of Thomas Tennant.

Loge/Lodge Family

Although Henry Loge was a tenant of Fountains Abbey at Haltongill in 1536 and the family was still in the area in C19th there are very few entries of them in the old Parish Register. The earliest record is of the marriage of Elizabeth of Hubberholme to John Tennant in 1616. In 1632 Francis a yeoman of Hubberholme married Elizabeth Sedgewick of Horton-in-Ribblesdale. The following year Isabel of Arncliffe married John Battle of Coniston.

In 1670 we have the rather strange record of the baptism of Jeffrey Tennant alias Lodge, son of Jeffrey Lodge. Unfortunately the child died the same year. Ottiwell Lodge was recorded as a church warden at Hubberholme at this time. In 1749 Jeffrey a yeoman married Mary Branton and in 1750 the death of James a pauper of Arncliffe Cote was recorded.

The 1803 Muster Roll includes William a farmer of Foxup class 1 ie. Unmarried and under 30. The 1841 census shows that William was still farming at Foxup. The 1861 census gives John a 55 year old farmer at Stonelands, Littonb with a large family. By 1871 John had died and his wife Hannah was living with 3 of the children. In 1881 Joseph Frankland Lodge , possibly son of John and his wife Jane of Stonelands had a daughter Elenor baptised.

Ijn the 1891 census the only family recorded was that of Richard aged 43 farming at Penyghent with his wife and 4 children all born there. Richard however was born at Redmire so may have come from an entirely different family.

Over a period of more than 350 years the family seems to have kept a link with Littondale but were better established in Buckden – Kettlewell area.

Metcalfe Family

The Manor Court Roll of 1503 shows land which belonged to Thomas, James, Roger and Elizabeth Metcalfe in Hawkswick and Kirkby Malham. The document from the Raistrick collection no.277 is unfortunately no longer at Skipton library.

The earliest recordings of the family in the Parish Register appear towards the end of C17th. The earliest is the record of the burial of Elizabeth, wife of Richard of Cosh in 1671. In the 1690s a Thomas senior and Thomas junior both of Cosh were having children baptised. The last record of any family at Cosh was in 1705 when James a pauper had a son John baptised.

Several Metcalfes seem to have lived in Haltongill for a short period if the Parish Register is correct and it wasn’t until 1713 that anyone seems to have settled there for any length of time. Christopher had 2 children baptised and was still there when he died in 1734. Between 1772 and 1796 there were 12 children baptised from Haltongill. Clearly there were at least 2 Christophers. The first record is of the marriage of Christopher to Ann in 1772 followed by the baptism of a daughter Ann the same year. After that there is no mention of Ann. The next record is of the baptism of Christopher and Margaret’s son Christopher in 1777. To add more confusion a Christopher and Sarah had the first of their 2 sons baptised in 1779. 

Scattered between these families were 5c other baptisms all children of Christopher but with no mother’s name given. It is quite likely that either Margaret or Sarah was the second wife of Ann’s husband.

Another family at Haltongill was that of William who married Frances Bouskill in 1783. In 1779 Joseph a Quaker convert was baptised. The following year he married Dorothy Atkinson. Was this perhaps the reason for his conversion?

A succession of families lived at Foxup but there is not enough information to link them together. The first on recorded was the marriage of Alexander to Elizabeth in 1678. George of Foxup had a son John baptised in 1693. Another George married Susanne Foster in 1742. They had 4 children baptised between 1743 and 1753.

In 1751 Robert a yeoman married Issabel Simpson. They had 5 children between 1756 and 1774. A Jonathan appeared at Foxup in 1789 when his son Robert was baptised followed by Ann in 1790. Several other families were in existence lower down the valley during the C18th but there are very few records of them. Other families were also recorded but there is no information about where they were living. The best recorded family of all is that of Thomas who married Rose Preston in 1793. By 1809 they had 9 children baptised but not one record gives the place they were living.

The 1803 Muster Roll gives 2 Christophers at Haltongill both single under 30 plus Robert single under 30 a servant and Thomas a cordwainer at Litton.

The Families of Halton Gill Part 3 continued

By June Tingley

The Hebden Family

The family was first recorded in the parish register when James of Beggermonds married Mary Sidgewick. In 1717 Stephen, a yeoman married Frances Procter. When their son Jeffrey was baptised the following year Stephen was said to be a tailor living at Haltongill. Jeffrey died the same year and it wasn’t until 1724 that the baptism of another child, Agnes occurred.

In 1735 Stephen, son of Stephen of Oughtershaw was baptised. Was this the same family? Also living at Haltongill at the same time as Stephen was Robert, whose son James was baptised in 1720. When his son Roger died in 1723 the family had moved to Foxup. Robert and James moved to Cosh at some time as James was recorded there when his daughter Agneas was baptised in 1758 and Robert died there in 1764, the same year as his daughter in law Isabel. Another Roger, a yeoman married Margaret Preston in 1751. They were living at Haltongill when their daughter Susannah was baptised in 1756.

In 1756 John of Hubberholme, a eidower married Ann Metcalfe of Cray. It is possible they are the same couple who moved to Haltongill and had a son James baptised in 1777, followed by Nancy in 1781. A daughter Fanny died in 1783. A John of Middlehouse, Malham Moor was buried at Arncliffe in 1813 aged 95, possibly John from Hubberholme. A Stephen also of Middlehouse died in 1862 aged 92.

None of the family appeared on the 1803 Muster Roll nor in the 1841 census.

The Heseldon/Heseltine Family

The first records of the family in the parish register show them living down Littondale at Hawkswick and Arncliffe Cote during C18th. The first known to be living higher up the valley at Foxup was Thomas who married Betty Metcalfe in 1789. They had 9 children baptised between 1789 and 1810. Thomas was included on the Muster Roll of 1803 for the township of Haltongill, where he was recorded as a labourer class 4. In the 1841 census he is recorded as a 70 year old labourer living with his daughter Mary and son Robert. Several of Thomas’ children can be found on later census records. Matthew baptised in 1799 was living at Cracoe in 1851. James baptised in 1808 was living with his wife Elizabeth at Buckden where he worked as a cartman. His sister Isabel was also living with the family. They had 7 children living with them at the time but one Mary, born at Arncliffe was probably only a visitor. James, born around 1837 later had a son John who returned to Haltongill and in 1871 was farming 10 acres of land.

From 1840 – 1855 a John Heseltine was one of a group of men eeking out a living mining lead in the area between Hawkswick Clouder and Procter High Mark. Although there were a lot of children born and survived they seem to have dispersed quite quickly around other villages in the Dales.

The Hill Family

The earliest in the parish register records the marriage of Thomas and Catherine Tennant in 1691. Nothing else is recorded until the baptism of Christopher, son of Thomas in 1720. Christopher probably became a carpenter at Haltongill and married Jane Calvert in 1741. They had 9 children: Robert, 2 x Christophers who both died in childhood, James, John, 2 x Thomas both baptised and died between 1756 and 1759, Charles, and William who died in 1762. Robert married Elizabeth Sedgewick in 1768 and lived at Litton. They had 8 children but sadly only 2 survived, Robert the eldest baptised in 1773 and Charles the youngest baptised in 1782.

In 1731 James of Heseldon married Alice Calvert. Their daughter Elizabeth was baptised in 1731, followed by Ann in 1734, Robert in 1746 and Christopher in 1750. It is possible that James then moved to Penyghent, as in 1777 Robert, the son of James, a yeoman of Penyghent, died there. In 1779 Christopher married Agnes Bouskill and was living at Haltongill when their first 4 children were baptised. Only 2 of them survived infancy. They were James baptised in 1781 but died when he was only 29 years old and Charles in 1785. The family then seems to have moved to Litton where Christopher became the inn keeper. Another son John was baptised in 1790. In 1794 the youngest son William was baptised. Christopher died that same year and William the year after. John probably married Ellinor Hall in 1811.

In 1808 Charles a butcher of Litton married Ann Brook. Whether he was the son of Robert or Christopher is not indicated but it is interesting to see that the other Charles is a witness at the wedding. They had a daughter Nancy baptised in 1809 and a son James the following year but unfortunately he did not survive.

Thomas of Haltongill, married to Ellen was a contemporary of Christopher and James. He had a son baptised in 1747, followed by Issabel in 1749, Leonard in 1753, James in 1758 and Christopher in 1760. When Issabel was baptised Thomas was described as a poor man. Leonard lived at Haltongill and married Elizabeth Stanning in 1776. They had 4 children, Nellie, William, Robert and Ann. When Robert was baptised in 1788, Leonard, like his father was said to be poor.

Another contemporary John lived with his wife Elizabeth at Arncliffe. John had a son John baptised in 1747 and a daughter Elizabeth in 1783. It seems likely that Christopher, James, Thomas and John were all brothers ie. Sons of Thomas and Catherine.

William, a ‘poor man’, lived at Foxup and married Alice Whitfield in 1775. His children were Thomas, Ellen, William and Dorothy, baptised in 1793 when William was said to be a pauper. Thomas, probably the son of William married Agnes Nelson in 1807.

In the 1803 Muster Roll a Charles is recorded as a joiner living at Litton, class 1 ie. Single under 30, and Charles, a labourer class 1. At this stage there is no knowing which Charles is which as neither had started butchering at that time. Also on the roll is Thomas, a servant, class 1, living at Arncliffe. He was probably the son of William of Foxup and Christopher, a labourer, class 4. The 1841 census only gives Dolly aged 45 a farm servant.

In 1851 we again find Charles aged 68 a carpenter born at Litton with his wife Elizabeth aged 51 and Robert aged 20. It is now fairly safe to assume that he was the witness at the butcher’s wedding and is the son of Robert of Litton.

There was a lot of poverty in the family but it seems strange that the poorer members of the family were not the ones who lost most of their children. We can only speculate on the cause of so many infant deaths. In 2 generations there were 17 children of which only 6 survived infancy.

The Hodgshon/Hodgson Family

This family was one of the earliest recorded to be living in the area. The Fountains Abbey lease book records that in 1480 John Brown and Richard Hodgshon were accounting for the sheep led at Deepdale – a flock of 275-300 wethers. However nothing is known of the family in Littondale until a recording in the parish register shows the marriage of Agnes to John Brookes at Arncliffe in 1690.

In 1718 Simon, a yeoman of Arncliffe, married Alice Preston and in 1724 Thomas, a yeoman married Agneas Wildman. Two more marriages took place; another Agnesin 1730 and Ellin who married John Clark, a tailor in 1739. Ellin was married by the curate of Arncliffe, Mr Hodgshon who must have been there very briefly as there does not appear to be any other record of him at Arncliffe.

In 1767 another Thomas married Agnes Brown of Foxup. His first child Edmund Brown was baptised at Foxup in 1767, clearly the son of Agnes. Then there is a problem in understanding the records. The baptisms of several more children of Thomas of Haltongill are recorded but the mother’s name is not included until 1779 when she is recorded as Annis. Considering the fact that Thomas baptised in 1782 appears to have been named after the child who died the year before and that William at the time of his death is said to be Annis’ child suggests that all the children at Haltongill were the same family but to establish whether the father Thomas had been widowed and moved to Foxup or whether there were 2 different families needs further research. When Alice was baptised in 1786 the family were described as being poor.

The 1803 Muster Roll gives Thomas, probably son of Thomas and Annis as a carpenter of Haltongill class 1 ie. Under 30. The only members of the family recorded in the 1841 census were at Arncliffe, where Mary aged 20 and Ann aged 15 were working in the cotton mill as labourers.

Although several Hodgsons appear in the dale in the 1851 census they were mainly not born there but in other villages lower down Wharfedale. One local family was living at Arncliffe, that of John aged 59 and Martha aged 60 with Thomas 23, Alice 6 and 83 year old Mary.

The Holms/Holmes Family

The family was first recorded in the parish register at Darnbrook where Jane was living at the time of her marriage to Peter Buck in 1692. The next record was found in the Hubberholme register where James, son of William of Haltongill was baptised in 1720. Unfortunately he died in 1723. When William’s daughter Ann was baptised in 1724 he was recorded as a yeoman. He had several more children, the last being baptised in 1730.

In 1742 Christopher of Oulcotes died. There is no more information about him, By 1752 there was another family at Haltongill, that of James who had a son James baptised.

A document in the Raistrick collection no. 224 lists the household goods sold by James Holmes in 1801 in order to pay his arrears of rent to Mrs Foster. It was probably James born 1752 who moved to Penyghent with his wife Elizabeth and had 6 daughters and 2 sons baptised there.

James Holmes, parish apprentice was involved as a witness in a dispute concerning a right of way through an ancient enclosure at Nether Heseldon in the early C19th. James’ son James born in 1785 may have been the apprentice although he seems rather too old. Between 1773 and 1781 a Mr Holmes, miner, was working Darsey Rake near Cote Gill, Arncliffe averaging 365 tons of lead per year.

A James, farmer at Haltongill class 4 was included on the Muster Roll of 1803. The 1841 census shows James aged 88 of independent means living with his daughter Mary, servant and John, a manservant for R. Walbank at Foxup. John and Mary were 2 of the children of James and Elizabeth of Penyghent.

By 1851 James had died and John and Mary had been joined by an older sister Elizabeth. In 1861 John was still working as an agricultural labourer, Elizabeth now aged 72 was working as a charwoman and Mary aged 68 a servant.

The Families of Halton Gill Part 3

By June Tingley

The Fawcett Family

The Rev Shuffrey when writing about Littondale told of how the Fawcett family kept the Abbot’s cattle at Upper Hesleden in 1456. In 1458 Adam Fawcyd was recorded as being a servant of Fountains Abbey earning 20/-. He was well trusted by the Abbott and made long journeys on his behalf. On one occasion he travelled to Lincolnshire to borrow money and frequently went as far north as Kendall and Crossthwaite.

In 1472 Richard Fawcett was recorded as vicar of Arncliffe. The Flodden Roll of 1513 includes another Richard from Upper Hesleden, with bowe. In 1596 Miles and Richard were recorded in the Wakefield Court Rolls as suffering from sheep stealing. Richard Twisleton of Newand House was accused of the theft of one sheep worth 10d but was acquitted due to lack of evidence. In 1619 Henry a wool stapler and Alderman of Norwich left an annuity of £10 for maintenance of the clergy at Haltongill. His brother William increased it in 1630 when he endowed the yearly charge of £18 from his land at Upper Hesleden, stipulating that the curacy should if possible be held by one of his family. No-one was suitable however so the post went to a Nicholas Smith. The family had been able to purchase Upper Hesleden after the Dissolution but then moved away, which accounts for the lack of records in the parish register.

The first record in the register is that of the death of John a widower in 1715. In 1750 the marriage of William, a widower took place. In spite of the financial support previously given by the family to Haltongill it did not prevent the excommunication of John from Arncliffe Church in 1725 for ‘Working att hay and other work on Sundays’. Perhaps the family were having difficulties about this time as in 1772 a Terrier for Arncliffe Church states that ‘One Fawcitt of Penyghent gave 5/6d for an Anniversary sermon on Nov 5th’. The amount was reduced from 10/- due to the great fall of land prices.

In 1749 James, a yeoman married Mary Wilkinson, probably the same James who lived at Arncliffe Cote where he died in 1766. The baptism of Mary, daughter of John, also of Arncliffe Cote, was recorded in 1749. It may have been this same John who was living at Hawkswick in 1752 when the death of Thomas and baptism of John, both sons of John were recorded.

None of the family were granted land in the Enclosure Act. The Muster Roll of 1803 includes William, class 4, a labourer. The family do appear in the 1841 census.

The Foster Family

The family are recorded in the parish register at the beginning of the C17th with William Foster marrying Grace Johnson in 1601 and in 1636 Anthony, a yeoman from Kirkby Malham married Jane Stephenson. However the next record is not until 1729 when Robert, son of Thomas of Arncliffe Cote was baptised. This was probably the same Thomas who married to Ann, was living at Foxup when his son John was baptised in 1736. Unfortunately John died two years later. The family then appear to have moved to Hesleden where Thomas died in 1749 and Ann in 1752. Their son Robert remained at Hesleden and married Elizabeth Armitstead in 1758. They had a daughter baptised in 1759 followed by Thomas, Agnes and John, all baptised in the 1760s. 

Also living at Hesleden was Thomas, possibly a brother of Robert married to Jane. They had 3 daughters, Ann, Alice and Nanny, baptised between 1767 and 1773. In the Enclosure Act of 1768 Thomas of Lower Hesleden was granted 4 beast gates and 24 sheep gates. Thomas died in 1778. A document in the Raistrick collection no.220 gives an inventory of his effects.

This was not the only family in the area at this time as in 1744 William, yeoman, married Margaret Stockdale and Susannah married George Metcalfe. Another marriage took place in 1749 when Mary married Thomas Preston. Nothing more is known about them but in 1742 a Margaret of Nab End died, so probably at least one of those married also came from Nab End. Thomas’ daughter Alice married Richard Cart of Stackhouse where they probably lived. Together with Ann and Nanny who lived at Settle they remained landowners in Haltongill. During the C18th and early C19th the Fosters were one of only two landowners in Haltongill. Thomas’ widow probably remained in Hesleden.

In 1801 James Holmes was obliged to sell goods and chattels to pay his landlady Mrs Foster document no.224 in the Raistrick collection. There are several documents in the Raistrick collection relating to property belonging to the Foster family. One no.222 is the rent ledger for tenants not only in Haltongill but also Litton, Horton and Grassington where Jane Foster was granted land in the Enclosure Act. Further on in this ledger are accounts done by Alice for material for the making of dresses, caps etc.

At the beginning of the C19th there was a dispute concerning a right of way across land at Nether Hesleden. Robert Preston possibly a relative claimed access through an ancient enclosure near Low Bank Farm along Gillside to Haltongill. The claim was strongly opposed by the three sisters but in the end Robert’s claim was upheld.

When Nanny died in 1858 she left £550 in trust for the poor of Haltongill, Foxup, Litton and Horton in Ribblesdale. It is difficult to believe that the Fosters of Haltongill are not related to those lower down the valley but there is nothing to show any relationship. However as the original family came from Arncliffe Cote I have included all those found.

The 1841 census shows William at Arncliffe aged 60 with Richard aged 15. In 1891 Richard was living at Litton with his daughter Ellen. In 1861 William, a shepherd aged 48 was living at Hawkswick with his wife Ann and at Litton, John, a tailor aged 44 with his wife Ann and 5 children. In 1891 another Richard shown at Arncliffe aged 23, a farm servant living at Foxup. There are still Fosters living at Arncliffe Cote and North Cote, Kilnsey.

The Frankland Family

The West Riding poll tax returns of 1379 listed the name of Willelnus Ffranynlan, probably an ancestor of Richard, John, Roger and Henry who were on the Flodden Muster Roll all with bows. In 1536 Cwyn and Christopher Frankelyn were tenants of Fountains Abbey at Haltongill. In 1575one Thomas Frankland was imprisoned in Skipton Castle for killing and destroying deer in Littondale from the Clifford Estate.

The family was first recorded in the parish register in 1633 when Thomas a yeoman married Elizabeth Procter from Horton in Ribblesdale. A document in the Raistrick collection no.564 held at Skipton library records Thomas a yeoman acquiring a farm from J.Peighen a grocer of York, ‘of 20/- ancient rent’ in 1660. Another document no.566 shows Thomas leasing what appears to be the same farm to John Winterborne of Appletreewick, husbandman. Yet another document no.566 shows Thomas leasing what appears to be the same farm to John Winterborne of Appletreewick, husbandman. Yet another document no.567 records Stephen assigning grazing land on the East Moor to Lancelot Knowles.

The last record found in the Parish Register of the family at Haltongill is the death of Stephen’s son John in 1673. There is one more record at Arncliffe Cote: the birth of Ellen, daughter of Thomas in 1682.

The Families of Halton Gill Part 2

By June Tingley

The Buck Family

The first record of the family in the area is in the Fountains Abbey Lease book. This records John Buck as being responsible for the accounting of the sheep at Darnbrook. In 1496 the farm was held by Thomas and was passed to his son in 1520 at a rent of 16/8d pa. At the time of the Dissolution there were 3 tenements at Darnbrook held by Thomas, Ralph and Robert. It seems likely they were able to purchase some if not all the farmstead as in 1541 Ralph left money for the building of a bridge in front of the farm. The present house was renovated in 1644 by another John Buck. In 1680 Anthony of Darnbrook died, followed by Ralph in 1686. 4 years later Anthony’s daughter Margaret died in childbirth.

A document no. 570 in the Raistrick Collection at Skipton Library dated March 1682/3 records the transfer of Riceside Close and barn at Haltongill from Michael Buck of Litton to C. Lambert of Kilnsey. In 1680 the baptism of Henry son of William was recorded followed by William in 1682 and Jennet in 1684. They were said to be living at Arncliffe. Also at Arncliffe was Henry whose son William died in 1690. It is likely that the above William and Henry were either living at Darnbrook or moved to Darnbrook, as in 1686 Josiah son of William was baptised followed by Christopher in 1694, both at Darnbrook. Sadly William lost both these sons and his wife by 1695. Jennet, daughter of William married Richard Brooke yeoman of a local family in 1723.

Another family was living at Arncliffe, that of Peter whose son William was baptised in 1693, followed by Henry in 1697, Mary in 1700. Stephen died in 1712, Peter in 1704 and Jane in 1707. When Peter was baptised his father was described as a pauper. Peter junior died in 1733, the year before his father. Jane, probably Peter’s daughter married John Preston in 1729. John Preston was probably a tailor of Arncliffe.

There was also a family living at Tennants Gill in the C17th, that of Ralph whose daughter Ann died in 1678 and Jane daughter of Agnes who died in 1693. A Christopher of Arncliffe and Jonathan of Owiccates died in 1708. It seems sad that a well-established family who had lived in the area for over 200 years should disappear so suddenly at the beginning of the C18th.

The Clarke Family

The family was first recorded in the West Riding Poll Tax Returns of 1379 when Elias was living at Litton and Henricus at Arncliffe.  The first record in the Parish Register was in 1700 when John and Agnes, living at Nether Heselden had a daughter Mary baptised, followed by Ann in 1702, Elizabeth in 1804 and Thomas who died in 1708.  Ann married Marmaduke Knowles in 1721 but was widowed in 1733. Nether Heselden was then let by John and his daughter Ann to Josias Dawson and Nicholas Blackburn of Thorpe. In 1721 the death of Issabel – widow of Foxup was recorded. A contemporary of John was Richard, whose daughter Ann died in 1711.

In Litton there was another John who was a tailor and married Ellin Hodgson in 1740. Their son Thomas was born the same year. Another family was that of William Clark of Oulcoates. His son John, baptised 1753, probably married Elizabeth and lived at Hawkswick. The latest family recorded was at Darnborough/Darnbrook when Anthony’s daughter Ann was baptised in 1784. There is no record of the family in the 1803 Muster Roll nor in any census.

The Drake Family

The first record of the family appears in the parish register in 1671 when Marmaduke’s son William was baptised. Sadly he died two years later when the family was living at Penyghent, where Marmaduke himself died in 1677. In 1687 Frances of Over Hesleden married Henry Bainbrig of Kirkby-Lonsdale. There is no record of anyone else in the family at Over Hesleden until 1740/41. A document in the Raistrick Collection no.582 records the Feoffment of a close called Heberside to Joseph Drake gent of Over Hesleden. Ion 1801 Thomas married Mary Wood. The following year when their daughter Betty was baptised they were living at Oulcoates. By 1808 when their son Thomas was baptised they had moved to Spitalcroft and were still there when anther son Marmaduke William was baptised in 1811. The family does not appear on the Muster Roll of 1803 nor in the 1841 or 1851 census.

The Elgin/Eglin Family

The earliest record in the Arncliffe register is of Adam married to Jane. They lived at Halton Gill and had 4 children baptised, Jennet in 1716, Thomas in 1718, Elizabeth in 1720 and Adam in 1724 when Jane died. It is likely that Adam remarried, as in 1730 we have Margaret, daughter of Adam baptised followed by Alis in 1731 and John, son of Adam and Eden in 1734. Adam moved to Litton at some time, possibly to live with one of his family. He died there in 1759. Thomas married Alice Metcalfe in 1758 and died in 1793. No children were recorded. The youngest son John married Margaret Metcalfe in 1757. In 1789 John of Litton married Alice Knowles. They had a son Anthony baptised in 1791 followed by Ann in 1793. When his daughter Mary was baptised in 1798 John was living at Blissmire.

An Adam appears on the 1803 Muster Roll for Litton, class 3 ie. Unmarried and between 17 and 29 years old. None of the family was mentioned in any census record for Littondale. There were various deaths of family members at Halton Gill between 1734 and 1776 but where they fit into the family is not possible to tell. Probably they were all single and some could have been siblings of Adam.

The Ellyson/Ellison Family

The earliest record of the family found is that of Christopher Ellyson who was vicar of Arncliffe in 1472. In 1552 George became vicar at Arncliffe. He had previously been Rector of Burnsall and in 1551 had been appointed Master of Christ College Oxford. Another George, possibly the son of the above married Mary Knowles in 1597. In 1513 Jack Ellison-bille- was recorded in the Flodden Muster Roll.

In 1536 Robert, William and two Johns were tenants of Fountains Abbey at Halton Gill. Some time later Henry, Thomas and John were recorded there. A document YAS 00121/1/2 m.46 dated around May Eliz 1 1571 records ‘Item delivered to James Ellison of Lytton by warrant from the said executor 15 small eshes which growed upon his own tenement for buyldinge of his laythe and he be sett sazne upon the said tenement for one tree iiij spares’. In the same document we have item 20 ‘Eshes felled by Edmund Ellison growing upon his tenement for building of his ffyrer house without warrant’. There is almost no record in the parish register which indicates family relationships. Almost all the records in the C17th and early C18th were of burials. It is clear however that there were quite a few families at this time – John, son of John of Haltongill had a son John baptised in 1683 but only lived to be 5 years old.

One of the collection of documents in Skipton library no.569 relates to the lease of land at Halton Gill from John to Lancelot Knowles in 1682. The land was owned by Lord Clifford. A second document no.572 records the lease of more land from John, yeoman and his wife Isabel to George Wilson yeoman of Halton Gill, to rent from Francis Earl of Cumberland. These two documents almost certainly relate to the same John.

James of Halton Gill died in 1675. James and John appear to have been the last two of the family to have lived at Halton Gill. There were two families at Litton in the 1690s, those of Henry & Thomas. At the beginning of the C18th there were two, possibly three James at Litton. One died in 1729, a pauper. It was possibly his widow Ellin who also also died, a pauper in 1731. One of the James had a son Henry, who subsequently married and had 3 sons. They were James baptised in 1755, John in 1757 and Henry in 1759. In 1725 a Henry of Litton married Dorothy Wildman. One of the Henrys was granted land at the time of the Enclosure Act of 1768. He was referred to as Henry otherwise Dowbiggin of Litton. No members of the family were included on the 1803 Muster Roll. By the time of the 1851 census there was only one Ellison family in the whole of Upper Wharfedale, that of another Henry aged 59, living with his wife and family at North Cote, Kilnsey. It is strange that there is so little information about the family in the parish register over a period of more than 300 years.

The Families of Halton Gill and Foxup (Part 1)

By June Tingley

The initial reason for trying to trace these families was to link them to the existing houses of the area. Such a small community should not cause much of a problem – so I thought. However, I was soon disillusioned. My intention was to rely on a printed copy of the Arncliffe/Halton Gill register. It did not take long to realise that the index is completely unreliable. The only way was to work systematically through every page – a long and tedious task. Very few addresses were recorded, and often not even village names were given. Several surnames have different spellings, so it is difficult to decide whether or not they are the same family. Often families used the same Christian names, in duplicate or triplicate in the same generation. Some families went to Hubberholme Church, so that also had to be checked.

There is a surprising amount of movement from village to village so that other villages have been mentioned. Sometimes a family has gone unrecorded for a generation, having moved to other parishes, and then returned. Another complication was the presence of a few Quaker families with no records. On occasions the IGI has been resorted to but it does contain mistakes. Very few occupations are recorded in the Parish Registers but the majority of people were working on the land, until the middle of the C19th when more workers were employed at Arncliffe mill. The Parish Register makes it clear that a lot of people were poor. Families who were in the area for only a short time have not been included, and no effort has been made to trace families after the 1891 census. It was interesting to find that 21 sets of twins were born between 1702 and 1803, 19 of them in Arncliffe or Litton.

The finding of an extract copied from a document YAS DD121/1/2m.46 thought to be dated around May 1571 gives further indication of the amount of woodland in the area at the time, and dates the building of a bridge across the river at Litton.

Sources 

Primary:

Parish Registers for Arncliffe/Haltongill & Hubberrholme

Fountains Abbey Lease Book

Raistrick Papers – Skipton Library

International Genealogical Index

YAS DD121/1/2m.46

Secondary:

Wharfedale – Ella Pontefract & Marie Hartley

Littondale Past and Present – Archdeacon Boyd

Haltongill in the Olden Times – Rev. W.A. Shuffrey

The Wharfedale Mines – M.C. Gill

Malham and Malham Moor – A. Raistrick

The Armistead Family

The earliest record of the family in Haltongill area was in the late C17th when the parish record gave the death of Agnes, wife of John of Foxup in 1677. The family probably originated in Hawkswick where Bartholomew died in 1669. Several other Armistead families were recorded there. The best recorded family is that of another Bartholomew who married Mary Tomson of Hawes in 1695. Twins George and Ann were baptised the same year followed by John 1698, Elizabeth 1703 and Robert 1707.

In 1711 another family, that of William, was recorded at Arncliffe. Between 1733 and 1735 an abrupt change in the spelling of the name Armistead – Armitstead took place. Whether this was due to the current vicar or not is open to speculation, but in all the later records there is only one when the old spelling is used this also applies to other documents.

In Skipton Library is a document no.581 in the Raistrick collection which refers to the release from E. & J. Todd and John Armitstead of Litton of a messuage at Haltongill, with gardens, closes and land, to John Clark gent of Heeldon, dated July 1735. John was living at Heseldon when his son John was baptised in 1730. In 1758 Christopher of Herd House had a daughter Alice baptised. He was a contemporary of another John probably son of John born at Heseldon of Haltongill whose son John was baptised in 1759 followed by 4 more children – Christopher 1760, Richard 1762, Margaret 1764 and James 1773. John’s first wife – Margaret Hammond died in 1764 possibly in childbirth, so he had presumably remarried before the birth of James. It was probably John baptised in 1759 who married Elizabeth Ayrton in 1785 and had another John baptised in 1787. In 1789 William son of Jonathan of Haltongill was baptised followed by Christopher the following year.

Several other families were recorded in Littondale at this time, namely those of Marmaduke and Mary at Litton with 5 children – John, Richard, Agnes, James and Elizabeth, born between 1754 and 1777, James of Litton with sons John Metcalfe, Richard and James, born between 1795 and 1798, and Bartholomew and Ellen of Hawkswick who had 7 children baptised between the years of 1768 and 1780 including twins – Bartholomew and Stephen baptised in 1775. In July 1790 a letter now in Skipton library was sent by Canon E. Wilson to his sister Jane Knowles describing how he had accompanied Mr Armitstead to Windsor and assisted in ordaining him. He had then advised him to return to Litton. There were plans to install him at the chapel at Whitehaven but if that wasn’t possible ‘The Bishop will take the first opportunity to provide for Mr Armitstead’. The Mr Armitstead concerned was Richard son of Marmaduke of Litton who graduated at Oxford and was vicar of St James, Whitehaven from 1790-1821.

In 1792 Christopher probably son of John of Haltongill was living at Litton when he lost his wife Catherine Ayrton and baby son. In 1820 Robert Armitstead a blacksmith of Litton married Nanny Hill of a local family. They had 3 children baptised, Thomas in 1821, Mary 1822 and Alice 1824. The Muster Roll of 1803 shows John of Haltongill, yeoman and William, infirm, a servant. There are no other records of William other than the son of Jonathan.

The 1841 census shows: John, farmer at Haltongill with his wife Jane and children Mary 7 years, Christopher 6 years, Margaret 3 years and Elizabeth 2 years old. By 1851 John was farming 150 acres at Haltongill where he was born. Mary was house-keeping, Christopher was a farm worker and Elizabeth at school. In 1861 Christopher was head of the household and described as a landed proprietor. In 1871 he was housing and employing Margaret Ingleby, wife of Thomas, who was not there at the time, who had 2 children. George Easterby, farm servant, was also there. By 1881 the farm had passed to Thomas Ingleby (see notes on the Ingleby family).

In the 1851 census James Armitstead is recorded as a 52 year old cattle drover born at Litton. He had a wife Jane and children Elizabeth 13, house servant, Richard 8, both born at Litton, Marmaduke 6 and Mary 2, both born at Haltongill. They were no longer there in 1861.

Extract from an obituary of John Armitstead of Ilkley who died March 1861 from congestion following flu ‘Deceased was manager of the Ilkley branch of the Craven Bank for 22 years. He was a native of Haltongill educated at Giggleswick then articled to the Law at Settle. He was a churchman and regarded not only as a banker but a faithful advisor and friend’. I found this in the Craven Household Almanac.

The Atkinson Family

The family was in Littondale in the early C16th when 2 were listed on the Flodden Muster Roll – Richard and John, both ‘with bowe’. The Parish Register suggests that there were several small families in the area. In 1676 James son of John of Arncliffe was baptised. Thomas of Darnborough probably Darnbrook had a son Henry baptised in 1681. It was probably Henry’s mother Mary, wife of Thomas of Darnbrook who died in 1691.

Another Thomas of Litton had a son John baptised in 1689. Ann, the daughter of Peter of Penyghent was baptised in 1696. She married Thomas Armitstead, yeoman in 1721. Various other events were recorded in the register mainly at Arncliffe, Litton and Penyghent during the first few years of the C18th. In 1721 William, a yeoman married Elizabeth and lived at Foxup. They had a son who died in childhood and 3 daughters. The youngest, Margaret, born in 1729 married Lodge Calvert in 1751. Between 1720 and 1760 there were no Atkinsons recorded in the Arncliffe Register. It may be significant that 2 families were recorded in the Hubberholme Register one living at Beckermonds, then Cray and the other at Oughtershaw. With the exception of Thomas of Foxup, who had twin daughters, baptised in 1770, the only other Atkinsons recorded were at Litton, Arncliffe and Arncliffe Cote. The last record was of the death of John of Arncliffe in 1802.

Burley Meeting 6 Feb 20

The Airedale & Wharfedale Family History Society met 6 February in Burley for a talk by our President Stan Merridew on ‘How to get the best from our Website’. 

The Wharfedale & Keighley family history groups which recently merged into our current society both had fairly run-of-mill family history websites which had operated since the 1990s. Like many other family history websites these were mainly used for membership subscriptions and sales of publications. Following the merger our webmaster Steve Miller created a much-improved new website containing a wealth of useful information for family historians. However due to technical difficulties a second website has since been created (thanks to a great deal of hard work by Steve and Stan) which can be accessed at AWFHS.org. Members can log into the website using their membership number and will then be allocated a password.

Using the Menu facility users can access a wide range of information including: details of meetings at our three locations in Burley, Keighley and Threshfield; places covered by our area; members interests; exchange journals from other societies; Wharfedale pictures; research notes, war memorials; school and sports information; the Delves collection of photographs and publications (still in progress). There are also useful links to archives, museums, on-line resources and local history societies.

Sales of publications have fallen drastically for many family history groups due to the increasingly wide availability of resources on the internet, rendering the traditional family history website out-dated. Whilst local groups are in no position to compete with the main family history websites such as Ancestry and Findmypast we are able to offer more bespoke information for family historians by making available information about the local area which is NOT available on the main sites. Thanks to Stan there is a huge database of local war memorials on our site and we are currently compiling additional local information for all the places covered by our area such as school log books and many photographs. These can be accessed by clicking on the place name in ‘Places’ on the website or by using the search facility. 

Our next meeting will take place 7.30 pm Thursday 5 March at the Salem Church Hall, Burley when Jackie Depelle will present ‘Bermuda, Berlin & Brill – 2 wars, 2 wives’. Members and visitors all welcome, refreshments provided.

Burley Meeting Report 7 November 2019

The Airedale & Wharfedale Family History Society met 7 November and Dr Phil Judkins presented his talk ‘Confusions Masterpiece’.

Numerous deceptions were put in place to ensure the success of the Allies’ D Day landings on 6 June 1944. Whilst the enemy anticipated a second front it was imperative that they did not know where or when this would happen. False information was intended to make Germany believe the attack would take place later and further east than actually planned. Scientist Bill Tutt successfully de-coded top-level Nazi communications so that the Allies could discern whether their false information had been taken seriously.

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