Answers to Questions


HOLINSHEAD, St Albans area, 19th century



St Albans

 June 2001

Judith White (judithwhite @t says: I am researching the Holinshead family from St Albans, Hemel Hempstead and Northchurch. I am using HALS postal photocopying service to verify entries found in the IGI, the BVRI and the NBI, as and when funds permit. I would like to contact other descendants of the Holinshead family. There is some information about on my web site - see Family Histories.

While, as far as I know, we are not related, some of your relatives appear in my press files, so it is clear that the families would have known of each other. The following press references could well relate to your relatives.

The Herts Advertiser of 15th November 1873 reported a gift ploughing for Henry Cox, Beeson End, Redbourn. My great grandfather Jacob Reynolds provided two teams, while the long list of farmers who provided one team includes Mr Hollinshead of Harpenden. A press cutting in Jacob Reynolds' Scrapbook, dated 13 Oct 1896, shows that a J Hollinshead provided a team at the guest ploughing at my great uncle's farm, at Cheapside, Sandridge. (These guest ploughings seem to have taken place when someone took on the tenancy of a new farm.) [For more names see FAWCETT, Childwick Hall, St Michaels, c1863-1890]

On 10th April 1886 the newspaper reported a meeting of the St Albans Farmer's Club, which Jacob Reynolds attended, to discuss "The Condition of Agriculture." The hon. sec. of the club was a J. E. Holinshead. The following week Major General Bigge addressed the club on "Fair Trade" and the attendees included J. T. Holinshead and J. E. Holinshead (hon. sec.). At the club's annual meeting in April 1891 J. Holinshead was the retiring secretary.

On 1st July 1893 the paper reported "The chief topic of conversation in Harpenden this week has been the double wedding which was celebrated amid general rejoicing in the Parish Church on Wednesday afternoon. The brides were sisters, first and second daughters of Mrs Cox, of Hillfield, Harpenden, and the bridegrooms were respectively Mr Harry Reynolds [my grandfather], veterinary surgeon of Welwyn, and eldest son of Mr and Mrs Jacob Reynolds, of Heath Farm, St Albans, and Mr Henry Mardall of Harpenden Brewery. ..." The names listed in the detailed coverage of this locally important wedding were:

Dr Andrews, Mr & Mrs Bailey, Mr H and Miss Bailey, Mr & Mrs G Bates, Mr & Mrs C Battcock, Mr & Mrs G Battcock, Mrs & Miss Beaumont, Dr & Mrs Blake, Col and Mrs Burlton, Mr & Mrs Carter, Miss Annie Cox (Bride), Miss Connie Cox (Bride), Miss Mary Cox (Bridesmaid), Mr & Mrs H B Cox, Mr & Mrs T D Cox, Mrs [Patty] Cox, Rev J A & Mrs Cruickshank, Mr & Mrs Cumberland, Mr W Dixon, Miss Gardner, Mr & Mrs H George, Miss Susie George, Mr & Mrs Green, Mr & Mrs Halk, Mr B Harding, Mr & Mrs Hills, Mr G K Hodgson, Mr & Mrs Holinshead, Mr T Holinshead, Messers J & W Horn, Miss Bessie Horn (Bridesmaid), Mr & Mrs T Horn, Mr & Mrs W Horn, Mr and Mrs W J Horn, Mr C B Kaye (Organist), Mrs Kent, Mrs & Miss Kidman, Miss Lizzie Kidman (Bridesmaid), Messers J & G Kidman, Mrs & Miss Lea, Mr & Mrs Long and the Misses Long, Mr & Mrs D K Long and Bessie Long (bridesmaid), Mr & Mrs L Long, Mrs E & Miss Kate Long, Mrs Mardall, Mr Henry Mardall (Bridegroom), Mr William Mardall (Best Man), Mr & Mrs F Lowe, Messers H, W, F & H Mardall, Mr J Mitson, Mr W Nott, Rev C Patterson, Miss Peaver, Mr & Mrs Prince, Messers Reynolds, Mr Frank Reynolds (Best Man), Miss Rose Reynolds (Bridesmaid), Miss Lizzie Gertrude Reynolds (Bridesmaid), Miss Nellie Reynolds (Bridesmaid), Mr Harry Reynolds (Bridegroom), Mr & Mrs J Reynolds, Mr & Mrs E Roberts, Mr & Mrs Whitbread Roberts, Mr C Scott, Mr & Mrs Sherriff, Misses C & H Sibley, Mr C F Sibley, Mr Skipton, Mr, Mrs and Misses Smith, Miss Nellie Smith (Bridesmaid), Mr & Mrs D Smith and the Misses Smith, Mr J Smith, Miss Spackman, Mr & Mrs C Stevens, Mrs Stonnell, Miss H Stott, Mr B Tall, Mr & Mrs Taylor, Mr & Mrs R Tomson, Rev Cannon & Mrs Vaughan & Miss Vaughan, Mr & Mrs Watson, Dr & Mrs Webster, Mr & Mrs Robert Weed, Mr Percy Wells, Misses Wild, Mr & the Misses A Willson, Rev R H Wix, Mr & Mrs Herbert Wix.

It should be noted that a number of your relatives are listed in the published transcripts of the 1851 census.

July 2001

Judith White (judithwhite @t replied Thank you very much indeed for posting a very interesting answer to my query. My 2 x great grandfather, William HOLINSHEAD, had a brother John. John had sons named John Edward born 1846/7 and Joseph Thomas born 1848/9. These two may be the J E and J T Holinshead who are mentioned in the newspaper report dated 10 Apr 1886 about the St Albans Farmers' Club. 

My 3 x great grandfather William had several other siblings including a sister Elizabeth. She married John Edmonds BAILEY on 14 Dec 1833. They had at least 6 children between 1834 and 1849. It may have been some of this family who attended the double wedding in 1893.

My 2 x great grandfather, William HOLINSHEAD, married Hannah FRANKLIN in Hemel Hempstead on 11 Sep 1837. [see Thomas Franklin, Brickmaker] They subsequently moved to Norcot Hill Farm, Northchurch. William is supposed to have been a member of the board of Guardians, which I believe may relate to the Berkhamsted Union workhouse. William and Hannah had 6 children, including William who emigrated to Canada and Thomas who emigrated to Australia. Another son, Walter Moore, my great grandfather, also emigrated to Canada but either he returned or he left his wife and daughter (my grandmother Annie Katherine) behind.
The Dacorum Heritage Trust in Berkhamsted has a fascinating collection of papers relating to the HOLINSHEAD family, including wills, solicitors' papers and auction catalogues.

My great grandfather Jacob Reynolds was very friendly with Henry Southwood Bailey, of Cuckmans, St Stephens, St Albans, and went on fishing holidays in Ireland with him. "Harry" Bailey was at one time (about 1900?) Master of the Aldenham Harriers and it would seem that the common link would be hunting rather than any family relationship. H. S. Bailey died in 1922, and was a director of a wine merchants in Pall Mall, London. Among Jacob's papers is an account book  relating to the sale of fertilizer and his customers also included a J E Bailey, of Bedmond, between 1918 (when the book started) and 1923.

See also BAILEY, Leverstock Green, 19/20th century

and HOLINSHEAD, St Albans, Hemel, etc, from mid 18th century

and SWANNELL, Rickmansworth, 19th century

and The Holinshead Family Tree

and Norcott Hill Farm, Northchurch

April 2002

Judith White (judithwhite @t, of Frome, Somerset, says You mentioned the Herts Advertiser. William HOLINSHEAD was living at Marlowes, Hemel Hempstead, when he died on 11 Feb 1885. He was buried at the Parish Church of Hemel Hempstead on 17 Feb 1885. Would the Herts Advertiser be a good place to search for an obituary, or could you suggest any other papers to try please?

The Herts Advertiser and St Albans Times was basically a St Albans paper which included some other news from other parts of Hertfordshire, and is not the best paper for Hemel Hempstead. You would do better with the Hemel Hempstead Gazette and West Herts Advertiser which started publishing in 1867. [See the British Library online catalogue]

Whether it contains an obituary of any significance is uncertain - as I have never seen this paper at this date. It will almost certainly include a simple one or two line death notice but only well-know citizens got coverage with a news items in the local news column - and even fewer got a news items to themselves. You earlier said that your William Holinshead was a farmer in Northchurch, and a one-time guardian of the Berkhamsted Union. However he had moved to Marlowes, Hemel Hempstead (on retirement?) and I would guess that the chances are slightly against anything significant. However it is definitely worth trying. To show you the kind of detail you can expect if there is an obituary see:

Obituary of James Richardson, Cricketer of St Albans

August 2003

Judith White (judithwhite @t has provided some further information: In your original reply  you quoted a report about a guest ploughing from The Herts Advertiser of 15th November 1873. One of the attendees was a J T HOLINSHEAD. He was Joseph Thomas HOLINSHEAD, a first cousin of my great grandfather Walter Moore HOLINSHEAD. In 1903, Joseph Thomas HOLINSHEAD married his cousin Catherine PETHYBRIDGE, who was Walter Moore HOLINSHEAD's youngest sister. She had previously been married to Edward PETHYBRIDGE but had been widowed before the 1891 census.

What is interesting is the level of cousin marriages among well-to-do farmers - to an extent which suggests they may have been "arranged" to safeguard property rights, etc., although I am sure the couples had some freedom of choice within the target eligible group. I give a detailed example in Who is Related to Who?

If you can add to the information given above tell me.

Page updated July 2009 - Links to Thomas Franklin and  Norcott Hill Farm added