The Patients at Harpenden Hall, Harpenden, 1851-1901

 

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Harpenden Hall was a private mental hospital at Harpenden and its history is described in  Early Mad Houses in St Albans and Harpenden. Census returns between 1851 and 1901 list the patients - sometimes only as initials - and often with missing information, such as place of birth not known. In December 2011 the identities of these patient was set up as a challenge for visitors to this web site. The challenge was taken up as Anthony - who is responsible for all the biographies given below, with the added to the biography of Maude Agnes Smith.

In addition Gary Moyle, of HALS, wrote:

I'm currently working on the madhouses of Hertfordshire including Harpenden for a chapter in a book. Apart from the census there are Quarter Sessions and TNA sources detailing patients, more than you have so far listed (I have info on Calvert, Thompson, Clarke, Manby, Charrington, Collett,Pattison, Badger, Bare, Debary, Johnson, Lawson at least). The work is currently ongoing! There's also info on the earlier St Albans incarnation of the Rumballs' institution. I think I know of 7 private asylums in Herts now.

It is clear that in all cases the families of the patients were well-to-do (it is not known what the fees were). Many cases the identification can be taken as being certain, while in some cases, the assignment looks good but could do with some more evidence - possibly from documents such as family wills. Six patients (all only identified by initials) still remain to be named, and in most cases these will probably remain a mystery.

 

Eliza Glinn Bullock

Anne Calvert

William Clerke

Woodthorpe Scholefield Collett

Mary Debary

Charlotte Elizabeth Grant

Gertrude Anna Otton Halse

Mary Anne Francis Coleman Hancock

James Stuart Jarvie

Anna Louisa Law

Jean Lowe

James Manbey

Catherine Moordaff

 
 

Eliza Glinn Bullock

1901

BULLOCK, E G

Boarder

Married

F

53

Lunatic

N K

Eliza Glinn Bullock was born at Chapel Essex in 1842 the daughter of Ambrose Groves (GRO and marriage register). On 26 September 1869 she married William Bullock clerk to the City of London (at Holloway Prison). She is found with him in 1871-1891 (as Eliza G or Eliza Glyn). She tended to understate her age though the discrepancy is less than for the E. G. Bullock at Harpenden Hall in 1901. There is, however, an E. Bullock of the correct age at Warwick County Lunatic Asylum in 1911.

Anne Calvert

1851

C. A. (F)

Patient

U

 

55

Lady

Unknown

1861

CALVERT, Anne

Patient

Single

F

66

Lady

Nk

Anne Calvert was born about 1796 and died 25 September 1866 at Harpenden; probate was granted to her brother John Calvert (National Probate Calendar). She is found at Ringmer House Lunatic Asylum near Lewes in 1841: aged 40, gentlewoman, not from Sussex. Both Anne and John Calvert are buried at St. Nicholas Harpenden: Ann Calvert daughter of the late Thomas Calvert, died 25 September 1866 aged 69. Following this lead I found they were from a family of brewers. In 1871 John is described as shareholder of a brewery, born Brighton aged 70. Twenty years earlier he is lodging with his cousin Sophia Calvert at Cheltenham; she also is brewery shareholder. There seems to be is a close connection to the Rumballs. In 1841 John is in the family of Rebecca Rumball at St Albans. It must have been a given to move his sister to the Rumball asylum especially as the 1844 report on Ringmer House complained, “…a female is permitted to be almost without clothing,.” and added, “…although the patients seem to be kindly treated, the house requires great improvement” (Asylums Index). A non-practising barrister, John then moved to Harpenden, no doubt to be near his sister, and can be found there in 1861 and 1871. Finally, John Calvert Esq. is buried right next to the grave of Arthur Griffin Rumball. The tombstone mentions he was a cousin of John Calvert of Albury Hall.

William Clerke

1851

C. W. (M)

Patient

U

 

67

Gent

Unknown

1861

CLARK, William

Patient

Single

M

78

Formerly Seafaring

Nk

There is buried at St. Nicholas Harpenden William Clarke Esq., born 23 August 1788, died 26 December 1863 aged 75. His grave is next to that of James Quilter Rumball. In the National Probate Register the spelling is further refined to Clerke and probate granted to his sister Matilda Newbolt of Winchester. In 1805 she had married Rev. William Hill Newbolt at St Pancras Chapel. He was an Oxford graduate, D.D. and J.P. The 1861 entry for William reads “formerly seafaring.” Revisiting the main web site I noticed that William Clerk of Winchester was in the care of the Rumballs as early as 1820 and thus stayed with them for at least 43 years.

Rev. Woodthorpe Scholefield Collett

1861

COLLETT, Woodthorp S

Patient

Single

M

34

...Man

Market Rasen, Lincolnshire

Rev. Woodthorpe Scholefield Collett was born 1826 in Lincolnshire and died 26 January 1913 at Brighton (National Probate Calendar). He was awarded the Browne Medal for Latin and Greek Poetry at Cambridge where subsequently he was a Fellow of Clare College (Cambridge University Alumni). His identity further confirmed by the 1881 census when he is living with his brother;  his profession is clergyman and the last column has Lunacy, ward of Chancery. In 1871 the corresponding entries are Fellow of Clare and Lunatic.

Mary Debary

M. D. 1851

D. M.

Patient

U

F

87

Lady

Hurst, Hants

Mary Debary was born 4 January 1766 at Hurstbourne Tarrant, Hampshire, and died 8 October 1854 aged 89. She is commemorated on a memorial at St Peter’s Church where her father was vicar and through his marriage to Ann Hayward lord of the manor at Weston Hall. There were in addition 3 daughters and a son. The family was acquainted with Jane Austen and is mentioned in her letters to Cassandra. Mary’s death may have been recorded as Debory as there is a record from Epsom that matches the date on her memorial.

Charlotte Elizabeth Grant

1901

GRANT, C E

Boarder

Single

F

56

Lunatic

N K

Charlotte Elizabeth Grant died at Chequer Lawn St. Albans 31 January 1911 (National Probate Calendar). This was the home of Dr. A. H: Boys the psychiatrist who previously had run Harpenden Hall. She was most likely born at Naples in about 1844, the daughter of William C. Grant J. P. and Maria. In 1861 she is at a school in Melcombe Regis. In 1871, 1881 and 1891 she is at her parents’ home in Cullompton, Devon. There is no indication of mental illness in these earlier records.

Gertrude Anna Otton Halse

1891

H, G A O

Boarder

Widow

F

36 

Daughter Of Merchant, Lunatic

Wandsworth, London

1901

HALSE, G A O

Boarder

Single

F

44

Lunatic

N K

Gertrude Anna Otton Halse died 16 May 1937 at Hill End Hospital, St. Albans; she was a spinster (National Probate Calendar). The initials in the earlier entry have O-H hyphenated so despite some discrepancies the same person. Possibly she was the daughter of William Halse merchant and Anna, baptized at St Mark Tollington Park 30 July 1856. I think she and her mother appear as Annie (widow) and Emma at Lee, Kent, in 1871; a William Halse merchant had died in 1864 after moving from Hornsey Rise to Bromley in Kent. Probate for both William and Gertrude was granted to merchants named Geard (though different Christian names and perhaps different generations). In 1881 Gertrude Ann Halse aged 24 was a boarder at Matlock Bank, Matlock, Derbyshire, an establishment run by Edmund Dobson whose profession was hydropathist (hydrotherapist in modern parlance). We may assume she was taking the cure perhaps occasioned by symptoms that had debuted within the last three years.She was almost certainly the G. H. aged 54, who had been a lunatic for 33 years, born Stoke Newington at London County Council The Manor Asylum at Epsom Surrey in 1911.

Mary Anne Francis Coleman Hancock

1881

M. H. - Handicap: Lunatic (Marriage annulled)

Patient

Other

F

54

   

1891

H, M A F C

Boarder

Widow

F

64 

Daughter of Indiarubber Manufacturer, Lunatic

London

1901

HANCOCK, M A F

Boarder

Single

F

73

Lunatic

N K

Mary Anne Francis Coleman Hancock was born about 1827 and died at Harpenden 27 June 1906 (National Probate Calendar). On 19 August 1863 she married Robert Augustus Peaty, gentleman, by licence at St. Matthew, Bayswater. The register shows she was the daughter of John Hancock, manufacturer. In 1867 a petition was filed on her behalf by her brother and legal guardian Thomas F. Hancock to have the marriage annulled. This was opposed by her husband. After hearing the case for four days, the court granted a decree nisi. There is a full account in The Law Reports available on the internet. It includes a sad account of the progress of her mental illness. She is then M.H. on the 1881 census. She is buried at St Nicholas Harpenden. The MI shows late of Stoke Newington, died at Harpenden 27 June 1906 aged 79.

James Stuart Jarvie

1871

JARVIS, James

Patient

 

M

52

Gentleman

Glasgow, Scotland

James Jarvie was born at Glasgow about 1819. He was a ropemaker found at Toxteth Park in 1841 and 1861 and at West Derby in 1851. The 1861 entry shows he employed 100 hands (so no doubt was wealthy) and was married to Agnes; he seems to have been in partnership with Thomas Pollock who may have been his brother in law (there was a son James Pollock Jarvie). In 1871, when James Jarvie was in the care of Arthur Rumball, Agnes Jarvie was a boarder with Stuart Rumball in Harpenden. I think it likely he is the James Stuart Jarvie whose death was registered at Newton Abbot in 1880 as Agnes Jarvie, widow and annuitant, was at Tormoham and Torquay (Newton Abbot R.D.) in the following year.

Anna Louisa Law

1901

LAW, A L

Boarder

Single

F

49

Lunatic

N K

Anna Louisa Law was baptized at Orwell Cambs. 6 April 1851 and died Bromley Kent 11 October 1930. She was the daughter of William Law and Mary Haydon. The family was wealthy.  Anna can be found in every census from 1851-1911 save 1901. In 1911 she was one of six sisters, all spinsters, at 57 Burnt Ash Road, Lewisham, with no infirmity listed. The five others were at the same address in 1901 but Anna Louisa was missing. Whilst the evidence is circumstantial it does support the view she is the A. L. Law at Harpenden Hall in that year.

Jean Lowe

1871

LOWE, Jean

Patient

 

F

70

Gentlewoman

Scotland

1881

J. L. - Handicap: Lunatic

Patient

W

F

80

(Surveyor)

Scotland

Jean Lowe was born in Forfarshire Scotland about 1800 and probably died at Harpenden Hall in 1882 as there is a matching death at age 82 recorded St. Albans R.D. in 1882. The 1871 census record shows she was a widow. I believe her to be Jean Low, widow and fundholder, found at Winchester in 1861. There is a son Major James Rose of the 2nd Foot (Coldstream Guards), wife Mary, son Douglas James M. Rose born Corfu (full name from GRO); perhaps Jean was twice married. She had a married daughter, Isabella Jarvis, also from Scotland. Isabella can be found in 1851 with “Jane Laws,” widow and annuitant; both were born Forfarshire, Scotland.

James Manbey

1851

M. J.

Patient

M

M

40

Surgeon not practising

Unknown

James Manbey was born about 1810 and died at Harpenden 15 February 1857. He is buried at St. Nicholas Harpenden next to Ann Calvert. “James Manbey, third son of the late William Manbey of Brighton and of Stratford Grove Sussex [sic], died 1857 (Gerish: died 15 Feb 1857 aged 47).” Stratford Grove was in Essex; the Manbeys were a noted family there and at Doddinghurst Hall. A number of documents pertaining to them can be found at SEAX. The father had been born William Tidy but took the surname and arms of Manbey in 1821 on inheriting from his cousin (London Gazette 27 March 1821). He died at Brighton in 1846 and James’s widowed mother Sarah is found there in 1851. Note that the initial is not I but J as in the entry for James Rumball on the preceding page.

Catherine Moordaff

1901 MOORDAFF, C Boarder Single F 40 Lunatic N K

Catherine Moordaff born 1865 died 1949 (FreeBMD) daughter of William Moordaff solicitor and wife Agnes resident Cockermouth, Cumberland in 1871, scholar at Greta Hall, Keswick in 1881, patient (lunatic) at The Lawn Lincoln in 1891. Not found in 1911 but in that year her brother Charles Henry a struck off solicitor was serving at HM pleasure at Maidstone Prison.

William Houston Pattisson

1871

PETTISSON, William H

Patient

 

M

37

Gentleman

Essex

1881

W. P. - Handicap: Lunatic (M)

Patient

U

 

48

Surveying Engineer

 
1891

P, W H

Boarder

Single

M

58 

Surveying Engineer, Lunatic

Coggeshall, Essex

William Houston Pattisson was born about 1827 at Great Coggeshall, Essex, son of Fisher Unwin Pattisson J. P. and Eliza. He died at St Luke’s Hospital for Lunatics on 28 June 1895 (National Probate Calendar). SEAX has indentures from 1849 for a William Houston son of Fisher Unwin Pattisson as apprentice to Charles Sanderson of Reading. He is found there in 1851; Sanderson is an engineering surveyor. In 1861 William is a boarder with Henry Trend LRCP (Edinburgh) at Hounslow.

Maude Agnes Smith

1891

S, M A

Boarder

Single

F

24 

Daughter of Solicitors Widow, Lunatic

Whittlesey, Cambridgeshire

At the time M. A. S. was born at Whittlesey the leading solicitor at Whittlesey (or Whittlesea) was George Moore Smith, who had married  Elizabeth Franks, daughter of James Clarke Franks, on 10 February 1857 at St Paul's Cambridge. He died in 1870 and the 1871 census shows that after his death his widow had moved from Whittlesey to Tonbridge, Kent. with 9 children, the oldest, George Charles Moore Smith, only being 12, while the youngest, Oswald Henry Moore Smith was still a newborn infant when his father died. More relevantly Maude Agnes Smith was 4 years old. Elizabeth and seven of her children, including Maude, were still at Tondridge in 1881. In 1891 M.A.S. was a patient at Harpenden Hall and her mother and two sisters had moved to Malvern House, Holywell Hill, St Albans, possibly to be close to Maude at Harpenden Hall.

In the 1901 census Maude and her sister Esther F. Smith were living at 31 Endcliffe Rise Road, near the University of Sheffield. No head of household is given but this was probably their brother George Charles Moore Smith (see below) who was at a hotel in Malborough, Wilts. Also in 1901 Charles edited  the autobiography of Gen. Sir Harry Smith and the preface  says "Lastly, my thanks are due to my brothers and sisters who assisted in transcribing the Autobiography, and in particular to my sister, Miss M. A. Smith, who did most of the work of preparing the Index."  At the time of the 1911 census there were only servants at 31 Endcliffe Rise Road - Charles was  staying at Lansdowne Place, London while Alice Firth Smith and Maude Agnes Smith were in the University of Sheffield Hostel at Ambleside, Westmoreland.

    Maude's eldest brother was Professor George Charles Moore Smith (1858-1949) was educated at Tonbridge School; St John's College, Cambridge (Foundation Scholar); 1st Class Classical Tripos, 1881; Cambridge University Extension Lecturer; Professor of English Literature, Firth College, Sheffield, 1896; retained this post in the University of Sheffield, 1905-1924; Emeritus Professor of English Language and Literature in the University of Sheffield; Honorary Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge; Fellow of the British Academy, 1933; died, 1940. (link) His obituary in The Modern Language Review states that, "A bachelor, he resided with his sisters in Sheffield until his death."

Elizabeth Wilhelmina Galliers Swinton

1891

E W G S

Boarder

Widow

F

68 

Widow Dependent Or Daughter, Lunatic

Scotland

Elizabeth Wilhelmina Galliers Swinton was born about 1823 in Scotland (secondary source has maiden name as Gibb). She married William Henry Swinton, Honourable East India Naval Service (retired) and they had two sons and a daughter. They were at Paddington in 1871 and Guildford in 1881. In 1878 their daughter Minna Maynard Swinton married Lieutenant Colonel (later Major General) Alexander Callander of the Bengal Staff Corps. In 1891 when EWGS was at Harpenden Hall this family was living in Bedford. William Henry Swinton had died there in the preceding year, leaving little money (National Probate Calendar), which explains why EWGS was dependent on her daughter. By 1901 Alexander and Minna Callander were living at Vineyard, Dartington, Devon and had with them the widowed Elizabeth Swinton. Alexander Callander died 16 June 1905 (National Probate Calendar) and Elizabeth W. G. Swinton in 1908 (GRO) followed by Minna Callander in 1910 (GRO). There is a Swinton Society with a wealth of details about the Callander and Swinton families including a connection to Quentin Hogg.

Peter Thompson

1851 T, P Patient Single M 34 Gentlemam  
1861 Thompson, Peter Patient Single M 44 Formerly Army Sailor N.K.
1871

THOMPSON, Peter

Patient

 

M

53

Gentleman

Frith St, Soho, Middlesex

1881

P. J. - Handicap: Lunatic

Patient

U

M

61

   
1891

T,  P

Boarder

Single

M

74 

Son Of Army Clothier, Lunatic

Soho, London

Peter Thompson was baptized at St Anne Soho on 3 February 1817, son of Peter Thompson tailor and Amelia. Peter Thompson of Harpenden Hall gentleman died 26 December 1893 aged 76; administration to Ridley Thompson (National Probate Register; age from FreeBMD). Ridley was his brother and the key to the riddle. He was wealthy so Peter Thompson Sr. must have done well as an army clothier. Clearly Peter Jr. is P. T. in the 1881 and 1891 returns from Harpenden Hall (P. J. is a misreading).  

As yet unidentified

R? C? A? 1891

A, R C

Boarder

Widow

F

50 

Daughter Of Clergyman C Of E, Lunatic

Wales

C? C? 1891

C, C

Boarder

Widow

F

31 

Daughter Of Solicitor, Lunatic

London, Primrose Hill RD

C? C? A? C? 1891

C, C C A

Boarder

Widow

F

27 

Daughter Of Merchants Widow, Lunatic

Hampstead, London

H? P? 1851

P, H.

Patient

U

M

35

Formerly Stock Brokers Clerk

St Albans

C? S? 1891

S, C

Boarder

Widow

F

56 

Widow Of Solicitor, Lunatic

 

The following relates to the list of surnames recorded by Gary Moyle

Gayford Manning Bare

Bare is a fairly uncommon name so one that died at an asylum in Essex might turn out to be relevant:

Gayford Manning Bare was born at Colchester about 1864 and died 24 June 1906 at the County Asylum, South Weald Essex (National Probate Calender); he was buried in the County Asylum Cemetery on 29 June 1906 (SEAX). In 1871 he was at the District Infant Orphan Asylum at Wanstead; in 1881 with his aunt Agnes Bare at Bromley, in 1891 he was a lodger in Bromley and in 1901 a boarder at The Homestead, Hadleigh, Essex, which was run by The Salvation Army. In 1894 he married Emma Southgate or Wickenden at Bromley but in 1901 she was enumerated separately at Mill Cottage, Downe, Kent.

     
December 2011   Page created, and later updated