19 November 2009

What is it about London???

Just the one anniversary today, the marriage of George Pates and Mary Ann Huckle in Biggleswade in 1875. George, my first cousin three times removed, was the son of Samuel & Eliza (nee Bland) and was brought up in the small market town.

George & Mary Ann produced nine children between 1876 and 1897 and were living in Potton Road in 1911. This census has more information that its predecessors, giving the number of rooms in the residence - the instruction being to "Count the kitchen as a room but do not count scullery, landing, lobby, closet, bathroom . . . .". We also get the number of years the head of the household and his wife have been married and the number of children: born to the marriage, still living and died.

In this case, G&A lived in a dwelling of five rooms, had been married for 35 years and the children count was 9:7:2. This rather suggests that I haven't yet discovered that two of their children died before 1911 . . . . . work to do there, methinks.

The reason for the title of today's entry? Well, three of the children went to the great metropolis. Frederick (born 1880) was a tram conductor in Islington in 1901; in the same year Minnie was in service in Tottenham and Albert moved to Holloway to become a newspaper vendor (aged 16) in 1911. He was living with his brother Frederick, who had progressed to the lofty heights of Ticket Inspector by this time. Oh, and EIGHT rooms. Not bad, eh?

More soon.

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