CAMPBELL, Hertford & Great Amwell, 1790s-1880s

August 2001

Susan Snowdon (wimhiker @t of Calgary, Canada, writes On a recent visit to Hertford I was able to find some interesting information about my ancestors. From the archives at Haileybury College I was able to find that Matthew Campbell was their first purveyor, and a land owner. He had two grandsons, George and Matthew, also mentioned in Haileybury history. (George was my great great-grandfather.) From the 1881 census, I know George was born in Bishopsgate, Middlesex about 1825. He died in Hertford in 1909 and is buried at Hertford Heath with his wife Amelia Bryant. What I don't know is who was Matthew's son, father of George?

The normal approach to such a problem is to start from the most recent and work back, and to fill in the details you may be able to access the relevant microfilms and indexes at your nearest LDS Family History Centre, and possibly other family history resources in Calgary.

As you know, the 1881 census reveals (among other things) that George Campbell was the Gate Porter at the Chief Lodge, Haileybury, Great Amwell. He was 56, born in Bishopsgate. His wife was Amelia B Campbell (48, born Mangotsfield, Gloucestershire) and he had 4 children born at Hertford Heath, the oldest being Frank, aged 14. The thing you need to do is to buy his marriage certificate - but the name George Campbell is rather common so it would help to know his wife's maiden name - so you can look her up in the index - and both she and her husband should have the same certificate reference number. Amelia's maiden name can be found on Frank's birth certificate, and as he was born in Hertfordshire this can be ordered from HALS.

Obviously you need to have an approximate date for the marriage, which was presumably sometime between 1850 and 1866. Great Amwell is comparatively small so a look at the 1871 census microfilm should show if there were older children.

The 1881 census also tells us that Mathew P Campbell (49, born London) was the Licensed Victualler at the East India College Arms, London Road, Great Amwell. He is listed in the 1882 Kelly's Directory - which gives his full name as Matthew Patrick Campbell. His wife was not at home at the time of the census, but his eldest child was James (19, solicitor's clerk, born Hertford Heath). This is consistent with a marriage on familysearch between Matthew Patrick Campbell and Sarah Ann Maryon on 28 Feb 1858 at Saint Leonards, Shoreditch, London. As you know the church you have the choice between looking at the microfilm of the register (best because it will have the couple's own signatures) or buying the marriage certificate.

The 1881 census gives another clue that means that Mathew may have had another brother, as his household includes Jane E Campbell, a 17 year old niece born at Brixton, Surrey.


Assuming that the information that a Mathew Campbell was the grandfather of George and Mathew Campbell mentioned above, it is appropriate to see what information is available about him.

The British Vital Records Index shows that a Mathew and Elizabeth Campbell had six children baptised at St Andrews, Hertford: Hannah (1794), Elizabeth (1794), Martha (1797), James (1797), Izabella (1799), Mary Ann (1800), Mathew (1802) and Edward (1804). There may well be additional information on the register.

Children often died in infancy and a check of the National Burial Index (which covers 1800-1850) shows that a James Campbell was buried at St Andrews on 3 June 1802. From the index it is not clear whether James was an adult or an infant - so again a look at the register microfilm is called for. The registers also shows that a 61 year old Elizabeth Campbell was buried on 21st May, 1829, while an 81 year old Matthew Patrick Campbell died on 12th November 1833.

Trade directories give another clue. The 1823 Pigot's Directory (available from Archive CD Books) lists the following "Coal, Corn and Seed Merchants" in Hertford:

Campbell Matthew, Maidenhead-st
Cook Wm. Old-cross
Gripper Thos. & Jos. Old-cross
Gutteridge Saml. Maidenhead-st
Paterson Geo. (coals only) Maidenhead-st
Peck Mrs. Ann, Fore-st

There is no Campbell listed for Hertford in the 1839 Pigot's directory or the 1850 Post Office Directory.


Having drafted the above answer I took the dog for a walk. I decided to drop into the local library and look in Cussans' History of Hertfordshire, as if Matthew Campbell was well-to-do the might be a record of a memorial inscription. The detour was well worthwhile as the following text is from a tablet in St Andrew's Church:

Mr Matthew Campbell, many years a resident of this town, departed this life 6th November, 1833, aged 81 years.

Mrs Elizabeth Campbell, wife of Mr Matthew Campbell, departed this life 14th May, 1829, aged 61.

Elizabeth, daughter of Matthew and Elizabeth Campbell, died 5th November, 1793, aged 2 years and 4 months: also John Campbell, died 3rd September, 1795, aged 9 weeks.

James Campbell died 2nd June, 1802, aged 5 years; also Alexander Campbell, died February, 1808, aged 18 months.

Capt. Matthew Campbell, of the H. E. I. Co.'s Horse Artillery, son of Matthew and Elizabeth Campbell, who died on his passage from Madras 4th December, 1821, aged 29.

Ann, eldest daughter of Matthew and Elizabeth Campbell, departed this life 30th April, 1833, aged 43 years.

If we assume that we now know the names of all the children of Matthew and Elizabeth Campbell, Edward is the only son to survive his father, and the only one who could be the father of George and Matthew. In addition it seems likely that anyone who has such a memorial in a parish church would have left a will and it would be worth asking HALS if they have it.

November 2001

Susan Snowdon (wimhiker @t write reporting some further research:  Thanks to your information, I believe I have filled in the generation between Matthew Campbell and his grandson George.

Matthew Patrick Campbell (born about 1752) married Elizabeth Ballard. (christened 4 Apr 1768 at S. Littleton, Worcestershire) and their children were: William Henry, Ann, Elizabeth, Matthew, John, James and Alexander. Seemingly only William Henry, Ann and Matthew survived childhood.

William Henry Campbell  was born about 1790 in South Littleton, Worcestershire and married Mary Ann ???. Their children were William Henry [b. 1822], George [b.1825], Elizabeth Ann [b.1828], Matthew Patrick [b.1830], John [b.1833], and Benjamin [b.1836]. The birth records for Wm. Henry and George show the family was living in Bishopsgate, Middlesex, but the last four children were christened in Great Amwell. The family also appears in the 1851 census for Little and Great Amwell.

Any further information about Wm Henry Campbell, wife Mary Ann and their family would be welcome.

The 1839 Pigot's Directory lists William Campbell  as a hair dresser and toy dealer in the High Street, Ware. Is this compatible with the occupation given for William in the 1851 census?

There are web pages on Haileybury College, Hertford and Great Amwell

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