Sunday, 7 February 2016

The life and times of brother and sister - Joe and Clara Smith originally of Birmingham but later of the USA.

This is something I wrote back in 2008 after 8 years on and off researching the family for a lovely man in the USA. I have sadly learnt that he has now passed on and that there are descendants who are interested in the main subject namely, Joseph Smith. I am putting this online so that it is not lost.  I will update where new information has been found.

The life and times of brother and sister - Joe and Clara Smith

Joe was born on 19 November 1858 in Ladywood, Birmingham, England to Joseph and Eliza Smith (nee Hobbs). Joseph Smith being a Pocketbook Maker.

By 1861 Joe was living with his mother and father and older sister, Clara. His father, Joseph, is now a 30 year old Fishmonger of London and his mother, Eliza, a 22 year old born in Bristol, Gloucestershire, England.

In 1865 Joseph gains a younger brother, John. [note: need to establish when John was born and to confirm his mother was Eliza as has been assumed].

By 1868 Joe's mother, Eliza, must have died [note: need to find the death entry which should be between 1865 and 1868] because on 16 April 1868 Joe's father, Joseph Smith, marries Ann Southall (neeHines). Joseph is shown as a 37 year old widower and Ann as a 46 year old widow. Both are shown as living at Steelhouse Lane, with Joseph now listed as a Leather Worker. Joseph's father is shown as George Smith, Tailor and Ann's father as Thomas Hines, Rule Maker. [note: need to find the marriage of Joseph Smith and Eliza to confirm the father's name(update - possibly in December Qtr 1853 in Bristol)/Also it would be useful to cross reference the details on Joseph Smith's birth certificate (update - this might be the right one as it came up in the search and the occupation of the father was Tailor].

By 1871, the family are living at 190 Icknield Port Road, Ladywood, Birmingham. Joseph is shown as a 39 year old Fruiterer, born in London. Ann (appears incorrectly as Clara) aged 49 of Birmingham. The children are listed as follows:
  • Thomas Southall, son, 24, Stacker
  • Clara Smith, daughter, 13, Scholar
  • George Southall, son, 13, Scholar
  • Joseph Smith, son, 12, Scholar (Old Joe)
  • John Smith, son, 6 Scholar
All are shown as born in Birmingham.

By the time Joe was 20 years old he was working as a Caster [note: need to confirm this as he is later shown as a Metal Carter]. On 22 June 1879, at St Matthew's Church, Harborne, Joe married Ellen Gittus, a 19 year old spinster of Rabone Lane. Her father is shown as Leonard Gittus, Carpenter. Joe was living at London Street and his father is shown as Joseph Smith, Greengrocer. Leonard Gittus and Clara Smith (Joe's sister) were the witnesses.

Little over a year later the family were all back at St Matthew's for the wedding of Ellen's sister. Emma Gittus, 22 year old spinster, married Joseph Miles, a 21 year old, bachelor on 18 July 1880. He was of Howard Street and Emma was, like her sister the year before, from Rabone Street.

Joseph Smith, Snr, must have died by 1881 [note: need to find this death/burial entry] because Ann Smith is shown as a widow on the 1881 census. She is listed as a 59 year old boarder at 4 Court, 1 House, Oster Street, Rotten Park. Head of the household is George Southall – her son – a 23 year old general labourer. His wife is shown as Clara, 23 years old. It is believed that Clara is Clara Smith, Joe's sister and step daughter of Ann. [note: need to find the marriage certificate of George Southall and Clara Smith].

Joe, by now was living at 14 Molliett Street, Harborne with Ellen Smith and young son, Joseph L. Smith. Joe was a 22 year old metal carter of Birmingham, whilst Ellen is shown as a 20 year old born Stoke, Worcestershire. Joseph L Smith (could the L be for Leonard after Ellen's father?) is shown as 11 months old and born in Smethwick, Staffordshire. The rest of Ellen's family are also living at the same address. Her father and mother, Leonard and Harriet and her uncle John and his wife, Emily.

In the years that followed, Joe and Ellen were to have three more children. Clara Smith in 1882, Caroline Smith in 1884 and Charles Smith in 1889.  [Updated] There may have been another child - William Henry Smith - who was christened on 18 January 1887 but he doesn't appear on the 1891.

[Updated] At the time of the 1891 census Ellen with her father, William L. Gittus (her mother, Harriet, isn't home) at Broomfield, Smethwick.  Ellen has three of her children with her, Joseph (11), Clara (9) and Charles (2).

[Updated] Joe, it would appear (according to the 1900/1910 census) disappeared off to the USA around the time of the 1891 census. Had he taken William Henry Smith with him since William does not appear on the 1891 census with his mother and his siblings?

By 1891 George H Southall and his family are living at 119 Aberdeen Street, Rotton Park, Birmingham. He is shown as a 33 year old Grocer. His wife, Clara, aged 33 and children, Arthur, 7, Eliza A, 6, George H, 2 and Agnes M, 1 month old are joined in the household by Sarah E Anslow, niece, shown as a 24 year old, widow.

[Updated] Joe, in 1900, was now a boiler maker living as a boarder in ED60 Precinct 1 Altoona city Ward 8, Blair , Pennsylvania, USA. (you might have to click next picture as I can't get the link to land on the right page - Joe is the second person listed on page 4).

By 1901 the Southall family are still living at 119 Aberdeen Street. George is now a 43 year old Grocer Shopkeeper living on his own account. Clara is also 43 years old. Eliza A, now 16, is a commercial clerk. George H is 13, Agnes M, 10 with new son Thomas aged 7.

George and Clara ran a grocer's shop at 119 Aberdeen Street and later at 44 Aberdeen Street for many years [note: need to find the research which shows how long they and the shop were there].

Ann Smith, George H Southall's mother and Joe's stepmother, is a 79 year old Lacquerer living at Turner Street, Birmingham. She is in the household of Sarah Kitchen, a widow aged 49. Sarah Kitchen is Ann Smith's daughter Sarah Southall (see 1861 census when Sarah is 8). [note:Sarah Southall's marriage to Thomas Kitchen 1869]. Living with Sarah are daughters, Nellie, 27 year old confectioner and Amy, 20 year old wrapper. Also in the household is niece, Clara Southall, aged 24 and two boarders.

In September Quarter 1907 Amy Kitchen married Joseph Allen. 

Photo of Joe Smith (with kind permission from Chris)

[Updated] By 1910 Joe (51 year old widower!) was living in ED45, Danville Ward 1, Montour, Pennsylvania, USA with his 32 year old 'niece' Clara Mae Kitchen. Joe is listed as an Hotel Proprietor with Clara being the Hotel Housekeeper.  Clara, it would seem, arrived on 3rd October 1909 (anyone understand the 1935 date above her name?) on the Haverford from Liverpool. Her destination was Danville, Pa. - Uncle Joseph Smith, 428 East Market St. She paid for her passage herself.  She was apparently of dark complexion, with black hair and grey eyes and stood at 5 ft 4 ins.  At some point Joe and Clara have a child.

Photo of Ellen Smith - very much alive at the time her husband is listed as a widower!
 (with kind permission from Chris)

It has not yet been established who Clara Mae Kitchen is. Amy (Kitchen/Allen) had an older sister, Clara born 1876. She would have been 18 years Joe's junior. Whilst it is unlikely, it is not impossible, that this is the right Clara Kitchen. [note: research will need to be undertaken to establish if Clara Kitchen sister of Amy is Clara Mae or not].

[Updated] Could this be Joe in the 1920 census? Living as a boarder in Mauch Chunk Ward 1, Carbon, Pennsylvania, United States. The occupation looks to be retailer, grocer, fruit. This could be a likely occupation as this is the trade his family in England were in.

George H Southall died in 1921 leaving his estate to his wife, Clara Southall (Joe's sister).

[Updated] In September of 1928 Joe writes his will and returns to England.

Joe died at Dudley Road Hospital, Birmingham on 27 March 1929. It would appear that the A. Allen, niece of 52 Aberdeen Street, that registered Joe's death in 1929 was Amy Allen nee Kitchen. Joe would have been Amy's step uncle.

The following day the will of Joe's sister, Clara Southall nee Smith, was proved in Birmingham. So it would seem that Clara had died shortly before her brother. The trustees of the will were George Gittus, Builder of 143 Gillott Road, Edgbaston and Arthur Southall (her son), Gas Meter inspector of Winson Green Road, Birmingham. It is assumed that George Gittus was related to Clara's sister in law – Ellen Smith nee Gittus. Clara left the proceeds of her estate to her five children: Arthur Southall; Mrs Eliza Ann Roche (married to William Roche pre 1920); George Henry Southall; Agnes May Southall; and Thomas Southall. It is believed that Clara's son, George Henry Southall moved to Ohio, USA.

Willam Henry Smith (the child missing from the 1891 census and wife Laura Ellen Bloom 

(with kind permission from Chris)

Willam Henry Smith 

(with kind permission from Chris)

The hunt is now on for Joe's grandfather - George Smith - if anyone has any information please let us know in the comments.

Sunday, 31 January 2016

GMT times for RootsTech Free Live Stream Schedule 2016

Miss any of Wednesday's sessions? Innovator Summit Video Archive 2016
Miss any of Thursday's sessions? RootsTech 2016: Thursday Sessions

The RootsTech Conference is taking place between February 3–6, 2016 in Salt Lake City. RootsTech will broadcast, online and for free, 15 of its popular sessions. 

I was worried I would miss out if I didn't work out the time difference and thought I might as well share it.

GMT time shown in red and the MST shown on the left.

Please let me know if there are any glaring mistakes or schedule changes.

Also will be 'posting all this week, both about the Family History Library and all the events, sessions and vendors at RootsTech'.

GenealogyInTime Magazine have a live twitter stream - see here

For Twitter HashTag #RootsTech - see here
For Twitter HashTag #RootsTech2016 - see here

Family Search YouTube channel

Day MST GMT (7 hours ahead of MST) Class Title (and links to the RootsTech write up if underlined) Speaker (and where linked see their Twitter Profile)
Thursday, 3rd Feb 8:30 a.m.
10:00 a.m.
15:30 – 17:00 Thursday General Session Steve Rockwood,
Paula Madison

Finding Sam Lowe
Bruce Feiler
11:00 a.m. 12:00 p.m. 18:00 – 19:00 7 Unique Technologies for Genealogy Discoveries Mike Mansfield

My Heritage
1:30 p.m.
2:30 p.m.
20:30 – 21:30 Best Websites and Apps for Local History Amy Crow

Recommended Sites

History Pin
What Was There
The Clio
Summit Memory
Florida Memory
Cleveland Memory

3:00 p.m.
4:00 p.m.
22:00 – 23:00 What’s New in Family Tree in 2016 Ron Tanner

Family Search
4:30 p.m.
5:30 p.m.
23:30 – 00:30 Virtual Family Reunions Joseph Richardson
Friday, 4th Feb 8:30 a.m.
10:00 a.m.
15:30 – 17:00 Friday General Session Josh and Naomi Davis (Love Taza), David Isay
10:30 a.m.
11:30 a.m.
17:30 – 18:30 RootsTech Innovator Showdown Finals Twile
1:30 p.m.  2:30 p.m. 20:30 – 21:30 Proven Methodology for Using Google for Genealogy Lisa Louise Cooke
3:00 p.m.
4:00 p.m.
22:00 – 23:00 Finding Elusive Records on Robert Kehrer
4:30 p.m.
5:30 p.m.
23:30 – 00:30 My Ancestors Are from Britain—What Do I Do Next? Myko Clelland
Saturday, 5th Feb 8:30 a.m. 10:00 a.m. 15:30 – 17:00 Saturday General Session Michael Leavitt
11:00 a.m. 12:00 p.m. 18:00 – 19:00 Photos—Emerging Technologies in Photography Jens Nielsen
1:30 p.m.
2:30 p.m.
20:30 – 21:30 Become a Master Searcher on Ancestry Anne Mitchell
3:00 p.m.
4:00 p.m.
22:00 – 23:00 Homespun and Calico: Researching our Foremothers Peggy Lauritzen
4:30 p.m.
5:30 p.m.
23:30 – 00:30 Using the Genealogical Proof Standard for Success James Ison

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Henry Mitchell & Lucy Dell Arnold, Electro Gilder, Birmingham

Henry Mitchell was born 26 February 1815 in Birmingham, Warwickshire, England as the eight child (of eleven) of Robert and Elizabeth Mitchell. His ten known siblings were: William, Robert, Ann Eliza, Charles, Elizabeth, Thomas, Edward, Emma, Julia and Alfred. 

He was baptised at St Philips Church, Birmingham on the 21 November 1817 along with Edward and Emma.

At the time of the 1841 census Henry appears to be living alone in Soho Street, Handsworth. He is shown as a Silversmith who wasn't born in the county. This would be correct given that Henry would have been born in Birmingham, Warwickshire whereas, at that time, Handsworth would have been in Staffordshire. 

When he was 27, he married Lucy Dell Arnold (daughter of Francis Arnold and Mary Dell) on 12 May 1842 in Harborne Parish Church. Henry is shown as a silversmith. The witnesses were William Henerey Barton? and Sarah Dell Arnold. Henry and Lucy went on to have nine children.

Their first known child was Albert Henry Mitchell, born the 29 January 1843 (same birth date as my Grandad) at 66 Unett Street. Henry registered the birth on 2 March 1843, the day before Albert Henry was christened in St George's Church (3 March 1843). Henry is shown as a silversmith on the birth certificate.

Their second son, William Mitchell, was born in Birmingham in 1846, followed by Thomas Mitchell born in 1848. Their fourth son, Frank Mitchell being born (possibly at Augusta Street) on 28 January 1851.

The family are shown on the 1851 census at No. 34 Tenby Street, Birmingham (HO/107/2051 folio 609 page 55). Henry is listed as a 35 year old gold penmaker journeyman of Birmingham, Warwickshire with: wife, Lucy, 35 and sons: Albert, 8; William, 5; Thomas, 3; and Frank, 2 months old.

Finally, they had a daughter, Emma Mitchell, who was born in Tenby Street on the 12 August 1852, and was christened in St Paul's Church, Birmingham on the 29 May 1854. Henry is listed as a gold pen maker. Sadly, Emma died in Tenby Street in June 1854. She was buried at St Pauls, 3 June 1854, when she was only 1 year and 9 months.

They were blessed with another child, Edwin Mitchell, who was born possibly in Augusta Street on the 18 August 1855. His story has been documented by his great grandson so please leave a comment if you are interested in this link or drop me a message via Twitter @Joynealogy.

A seventh child, another boy, Henry Mitchell, born in 1856, was followed by Arthur Mitchell, who was born possibly in Augusta Street on the 29 September 1857. Arthur was christened in St Paul's Church, Birmingham, on 5 April 1859. Henry's occupation was shown as a silversmith. Tragedy was to strike again when Arthur sadly died in Augusta Street in April 1859 and was buried at St Paul's on 11 April 1859. He was only 1 year 7 months.

By the time of the 1861 census the family were still living at 16 Augustus Street. (RG9/2167 ). Henry is shown as a 45 year old Electro-gilder along with: Wife, Lucy, 45; sons: Albert, 18, Jeweller; William, 15, Jeweller; Thomas, 13; Frank, 10, Scholar; Edwin, 7, Scholar; and Henry, 5.

Frank and Edwin were christened at St Paul's Church, Birmingham on 17 July 1861 when they were 10 years old and almost 6 years old respectively. Their father was described then as a guilder. Their mother, Lucy, would have been heavily pregnant at the time with her namesake, Lucy Elizabeth Mitchell, who was born in Augusta Street on 24 August 1861. Lucy Elizabeth was christened at St Paul's Church, Birmingham on 12 September 1861.

Early in 1862 Henry was in court giving evidence as reported in the Birmingham Journal on 01 February 1862.


At the police court, yesterday, before T. C. S. Kynnersley, Esq., Ann Warren, wife of a journeyman gunmaker, was summoned on a charge that she did “on the 18th of December last, at the borough of Birmingham, utter, knowing the same to be forged, or counterfeit, for an imitation of a certain mark of a die usee by the Guardians of the standard of wrought-plate in Birmingham, upon certain wares of base metal ; with the letter 'H', the figure '9' and the figure of an anchor, upon twelve finger rings. Mr Motteram (instructed by Messrs. Ryland and Martineau) prosecuted and Mr Powell defended .

In opening the case, Mr Motteram stated that the information might be laid under the 22nd section of 5th Geo. IV., c.58, or perhaps it would be more convenient if it was taken under a more general and probably a better known statute the 17th and 18th Vict c, 22 section 2. By the first-named Act the company which was called the “standard of wrought iron plate company” was incorporated and by that Act it was made necessary that all goods sold should be asked by that office or some other office of the same character. By that statue it was pointed out how the goods were to be marked if they were of the proper quality. In gold only 18 or 22 carats were marked. In 1854 another act of Parliament was passed - the 17th and 18th Victoria - whereby the Queen was empowered by an order in Council to introduce gold of a lower standard, and prescribe a mark for it. Under that Act the company referred to were empowered to mark gold of as low a standard as nine carats. The second section of the Act enacted amongst other things that the forgery of those marks should involve the penalty of not more than fourteen orless than seven years' transportation, or imprisonment, with or without hard labour, for any period not exceeding three years. The marks adopted by the company were a figure denoting the number of carats, and in that case it was a figure of 9. There was also a decimal mark, which for the years 1856-7 would be 375: the mark of an anchor, and the dominical letter H. The anchor was a standard mark, but the letter was changed every year. Defendant lived in Caroline Street, and her husband was formerly a working jeweller : but he had latterly ceased to continue such employment, having been proceeded against by the Assay Company for penalties. He allowed judgment to go by default at the time, but afterwards paid the penalty. Since that time defendant and her son had carried on the business. On the 18th of December last, defendant called upon a merchant named Leichstentein, carrying on business inSt. Paul's Square, and offered twenty dozens of Ladies' fancy rings, at 24s. Per dozen, representing them to be of nine carats standard, and as bearing the Hall mark. Mr. Leichstentein gave something less than the prices asked, and received an invoice - “Twenty dozens of nine carat gold rings, at 18s. Per dozen. £18. Settled, Ann Warren”. Afterwards it was found out that the rings were not Hall marked, the figures on the rings being 595. The figure “9” was also on the rings, and the letter “H” : but the letter, instead of being horizontal, was perpendicular. It would be his duty to show that the marks were counterfeit, and that the defendant knew they were so when she sold the rings. Mr. Motteram then proceeded to call witnesses in support of his opening statement.

Simpson Leichstenstein deposed that he was a merchant in St. Paul's Square, carrying on business under the firm of Leichstentein and Lewis. He knew the defendant, Ann Warren. He also knew Charles Warren, her husband. He had been in the habit of purchasing rings for five or six years from his wife. She carried on the business on her own account, but the invoices were made out in Charles Warren's name. On Wednesday, the 18th of December, she called upon him, and asked him to buy twenty dozen of ladies' fancy rings, at 24s. per dozen. She said she had some payments to meet, and wished to sell them. Witness promised to decide in half an hour whether he would purchase them. When she called in half-an-hour's time, he told her he had no orders for gold rings. But he would give her 18s. per dozen for them. He told her they looked better than some he had had, and she warranted them to be 9 carat. She accepted the offer, and made out the invoice for the goods upon a blank bill-head she had brought with her. He told her she had better put on the invoice “warranted 9 carat,” and she wrote the word “carot”. Witness told her she could write the word “carat” and she must write the word correctly. She then did so, and said she would guarantee the marks on the rings were 9 carat Hall marks. Witness examined the rings, and felt satisfied that they were Hall marks. He told her the marks on some of the rings were not so plain as on others, and she answered that some of the workmen in finishing the rings after they were marked wasted away a part of the shank where the marks were put. After this conversation he advised the bill and she put “settled” to it. He never purchased 9 carats rings without the Hall marks, nor any rings under 15 carats. Defendant had offered rings not Hall marked, but he had told her he could not buy them. He had been in the habit of buying that description of jewellery five or six years, and he was deceived by those marks. They would have deceived any man in the trade. He had sold between 17 and 18 dozens of the rings, and he had received some of them back again on account of their not being properly marked. He produced eleven of the rings he bought. 

Cross-examined by Mr. Powell : He did not know the proper Birmingham assay mark for 1861. He had learnt the mark afterwards. In the rings produced there was not a quarter of a grain of gold. He pointed out what he thought was an anchor to Mrs. Warren. He had found out since that the mark was not an anchor, although it was something like one. He only examined two or three of the rings : not all. Spoons and other goods are marked like rings. The first time he knew anything abou the case was when Mr. Ryland call upon him. He was deceived by the rings because he saw the letter H, the figure of 9 and the mark of an anchor. A plain gold ring of 9 carats would be worth 18s. per dozen. He could purcahse them at that prize – that ws at 1s. 6d. each.

Mr. William Westwood, one of the assay masters at the Assay office, Birmingham, was next sworn. He said that they marks used in the office for nine carat gold were the decimal figures of 375, authorised by an order in the Council : the dominical letter, in roman capitals, and the mark of an anchor placed horizontally. The letter changed annually ; but the other marks were used constantly. The figures 375 expressed the quality. The letter H was the dominical letter for 1856-7. The rings produced had not the genuine assay marks upon them, although the marks upon them purported to be so.

Mr. Powell ; That is the question. We say that they do not “purport” to be the genuine marks.

Examination of witness resumed : The figures 9 and 1, and the three figures on the rings, were the same as those used in the genuine mark, somewhat resembing an anchor. The dominical letter was the same in character, although different in position.

Cross-examined : The dominical letter was not always at the right-hand side, although it generally was. The position depended upon the width of the article. The marks on the rings fairly respresented the genuine marks.

Henry Mitchell was next called : He said he was agilder, in Augustus Street. He knew defendant, and had gilded rings for her. Early in December he did some work for her. Between the 2nd and the 13th he gilded 35 dozen for her. Defendant invariably brought them herself. He called upon her once on business, but he did not see her. All his dealings had been with her. He did not know her husband. She always paid him herself. Once the servant girl brought him a sovereign.

Cross-examined : He gilded both rings and gilt toys for other people besides defendant. John Randall, assistant to Mr. Robinson, a dealer in precious stones, in Regent Place : He knew defendant, and had sold her stones for finger rings. He sold her a quantity in the beginning of December last. They were similar to those produced. He had always transacted business with her, and did not know her husband.

Edward Jones, a jeweller, living at the back of Augustus Street, depose that some years ago his son was apprenticed to defendant's husband, Charles Warren. In December last he saw Mrs. Warren about cancelling the indentures, on account of having too little work. She expressed her willingness to do so, and agreed to go to Mr. Edmonds's office about the affair. She said Mr. Warren had left her and gone to another woman to learn a fresh trade. [Laughter] She said she wished he would keep away, as she could do better without him than with him. She would be divorced from him if it were not for the sake of the children. 

When they went to Mr. Edmonds's office they were told that it could not be done in the absence of Mr. Warren.

At this stage of the proceedings the hearing of the case was upon application of Mr. Powell, adjourned to Thursday next, when the case for the prosecution will be completed.

Also reported in the Birmingham Daily Post on 01 February 1862.

I had to check to see what happened to Ann Warren.

It would appear that she didn't appear in court when she was supposed to and by 8 February a reward of £5 was being offered for any information that lead to her apprehension. See Birmingham Daily Post on 11 February 1862.

There would, no doubt, have been cause for celebration when Henry and Lucy's son Albert Henry Mitchell married. Albert Henry, now a 20 year old jeweller, married Hannah Hanson (daughter of Thomas Hanson and Mary Blakeway) on 18 July 1863 in Handsworth Parish Church. Hannah was just 19 year old. (See their separate story once written up) 

It was a sad time for Henry and Lucy in 1867 as the Birmingham Daily Gazette reported on 05 April 1867

MITCHELL.- On the 12th ult., after a short illness, aged 19 years and 6 months, Thomas, third and beloved son of Henry Mitchell, formerly of Augusta Street, in this town.

By the time of the 1871 census Henry and the family at living at 3 Bright Terrace (?), Handsworth. Henry is shown as a 55 year old Electrogilder; with wife, Lucy,55; Frank, 20, working jeweller; Edwin, 17, working jeweller; Henry, 15, working jeweller and daughter, Lucy, 8, scholar. It is possible that William Mitchell, 25 year old, Jeweller is living at 44 Prescott Street with wife Mary A, 25 years old and daughter Ellen, 8 month old. There is a possible marriage between Mary Ann Lee and possibly William Mitchell in September Quarter 1868 in Kings Norton District. Is this Henry and Lucy's son? This needs further research. 

Albert Henry Mitchell on the other hand was living at 93 Aldersgate Street, St. Botolph, London with wife, Hannah, 26; and children: Annie, 7; Albert E, 5; Frank, 4; and Thomas, 1 with Frank and Thomas having been born in London. Albert Henry is shown as a 28 year old gilder of jewellery.

Sometime between 1873 and 1874 Albert Henry and his family move back to Birmingham. This needs more research to establish why the move to London in the first place.

There is a reference to a Henry Mitchell which needs more research. The London Gazette for 3October 1876 carries the following notice.

NOTICE is hereby given, that the Partnership heretofore
subsisting between us the undersigned, Alexander
Hidson and Henry Mitchell, trading as Hidson and
Mitchell, of No. 15, Spencer-street, Birmingham, in the
county of Warwick, Electro Gilders, Silverers, and
Oxidizers, is this day dissolved by mutual consent.—As
witness our bauds this 28th day of September, 1876.
Alexander Hidson.

Henry Mitchell

At the time of the 1881 census Henry and Lucy's son's family are living at 7 Regent Row. Albert is shown as a 38 year old gilder with wife, Hannah, 36 and children: Annie, 17, Carver & Gilder; Albert E., 15, Brass Founder; Frank, 14, gilder; Thomas H, 12, scholar; Alfred, 10, scholar; Arthur J, 8, scholar; Ada, 7, scholar; and Harry, 3, scholar. Alfred and Arthur having been born in London and Ada and Harry having been born in Handsworth.

Henry Mitchell, at this time, is as a 65 year old, Electro Gilder living not too far away at 3 house, 2 court, Ninevah Road, Handsworth, Birmingham (RG11/2833/43/34). With him are: Lucy D. Mitchell, Wife aged 65 years old and Lucy Mitchell, their 18 year old daughter.

It is possible that Lucy Dell Mitchell born c 1815 died December Quarter 1882 aged 67 West Bromwich 6b 446. There are two possible death entries at the moment for Henry Mitchell (born c 1816) – March Qtr 1886 Birmingham or March Qtr 1890 West Bromwich.?

It may have been the case then that neither Lucy nor Henry saw their daughter, Lucy Elizabeth Mitchell, marry George Livingston on 29 Jul 1887 in Edinburgh, Midlothian, Scotland.George was a 42 year old widowed Tailor (son of Andrew Livingston and Mary Aitken) and Lucy was 24. (I am in contact with a descendant from this branch so please leave a comment or get in touch via Twitter if you need more information about Lucy & George Livingston's family).

See George Livingston & Son and their blog showing their tailoring work

And a youtube video of their shop

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Robert & Elizabeth Mitchell and their family

Updated 17 June 2015, updated 21 June 2015 with photographs of the silver marks.
Updated 25 June 2015 to correct the spelling of Jaques (incorrectly spelt as Jacques)

Another rush job, I am afraid, as I want to keep up the regular posting but I have not had time this week to work on my next 'installment'. Edward is still attempting to distract me when I should be working on his parent's story. I was going to produce a quick timeline for Edward today but it is proving more time consuming than time available so I shall have to cheat and focus on what I was supposed to be doing.

Back in March 2013, I took a 'writing your family history course' presented by Brian Drescher via Pharos Tutors. One of the outputs from the course was to start drafting your family history story/book. What follows is what was produced at that time. At least it gives me a framework with which to work later when every branch has been drafted and bound.

The Family of Robert and Elizabeth Mitchell

Add family tree using FTM

Robert Mitchell first shows up in Birmingham documents in 1803 when he appears in the Chapmans Birmingham Trade Directory. He is listed as Robert Mitchell, Toymaker of Mary Ann Street. He was also lodged under Watch Chain maker. 

Add a screen shot?

It has not been ascertained when Robert married Elizabeth or where either of them originated from but they went on to have ten children together. According to their ages at the time of their death, Robert would have been 22 in 1803 and Elizabeth would have been 23 when their first child was born.

Was our Robert the Robert who married Elizabeth Gostelow by licence at the Parish Church of St Leonard's, Shoreditch, London on 19 August 1802? Disappointingly the Licence does not show the occupation of the groom. A comparison of the signature with that of a known signature of our Robert Mitchell dated ? does not help establish if the two Robert's are one in the same.

Nor has it been established if Robert is related to the Samuel Mitchell, a Jeweller as shown in the Trade Directories of 1791 and 1798 (at Navigation St and Hill St respectively). It would also be useful to know who Mitchell & Co, Jewellers of No3 Vauxhall Street were as listed in the 1785 Pye Birmingham Directory.

Robert and Elizabeth's first known child, William Mitchell, was baptised at St Philip's Church, Birmingham on the 14 July 1803. (Again does this add weight to the possible marriage in August 1802. Baptisms traditionally take place 6 weeks after birth so that would make the date of birth c end May/beginning of June 1803. Nine months pregnancy would make the conception c end August 1802 which fits in nicely with the possible marriage in London on 19 August 1802). Robert Mitchell [jnr] followed and was baptised in the same church this time on 14 February 1805. A little girl, Ann Eliza came next and was baptised, also at St Phillips, on the 18 November 1806.

Add History of St Philips Church Birmingham and a photograph?

The Bull Street Quarter of the ?Rates? book covering the period 1807-1809 shows Robert Mitchell taking over the premises of James Luckook next door to the famous Silversmith S Pemberton. By 1808 Robert appears in Holdens Triennial Directory Vol 2, Part 2, as a Silverbox, Pencil, Spectacles & Toymaker in General at Snowhill. On the 29 September 1808, Charles Mitchell was born and was baptised at St Philips on the 21 January 1809.

A rattle, apparently made by Robert Mitchell, and registered in 1812 appeared on the internet.

Back to family matters, Thomas, who along with his sister Elizabeth, was baptised on the 15 October 1812 at St Philip's.

In May 1813 Robert Mitchell registered (where explain what this means) his mark as R.Mitchell & Co with the mark M&Co.

The entry from the Register of the Birmingham Assay Office:

Robert Mitchell & Co (Late of Pemberton & Son)
No trade given
Mark registered May 6th 1813
Sponsor's mark is M&Co in Times New Roman script contained within an oblong with right-angled corners.

According to The Goldsmiths' Company - Thomas Pemberton and Robert Mitchell entered a joint mark as small workers at the Assay Office in Goldsmiths’ Hall on 21 July 1813. Thomas Pemberton signed for Robert Mitchell by virtue of power of attorney. Thomas Pemberton had entered his own mark as a gold worker some years earlier (18 August 1807). New marks were entered on 9 June (the month ‘May’ is crossed out) 1826. All three entries had the address ‘Snow Hill Birmingham’.

The mark is apparently TP over RM. (need to find source)

In 1815 Robert was made a Guardian of the Birmingham Assay Office. This honour would remain until his death.

Add photograph of the Assay Office?

Add information about the role of the Guardians

The following notice appears in the London Gazette published on Tuesday, 14 February 1815.

Notice is hereby given, that the Partnership lately subsisting
between Thomas Pemberton, Robert Michell [sic],
and Thomas Bishop, Jewellers and Silversmiths, carrying on
trade at No. 98, Hatton-Garden, Holborn, London, and afterwards
at No. 6, Thavies-Inn, Holborn, London, was dissolved
this day by mutual consent, as far as regards the said Thomas
Bishop : As witness the hands of the parties this 10th day of
February 1815.

Thomas Pemberton.
Robt. Mitchell.
Thomas Bishop.

In December 1816 Robert and his partner register a joint mark of Pemberton & Mitchell with the mark TP/RM. TP on top of RM.

Add photograph of the mark

The next baptisms would not take place until five years later, when on 21 November 1817 Henry, Edward and Emma were baptised together. Sadly, Robert and Elizabeth buried their ten year old son, Charles, on the 1 December 1818 at St Paul's Church. Charles' death was followed swiftly by the death of his brother, Thomas, who was buried, presumably alongside him, on 23 December 1818. He was just 7 years old. Their abode for both entries in the burial register is shown as Small Heath. It is interesting that whilst the children are all baptised in St Philip's, the burials take place at St Paul's. Add speculation – family grave?

Add History of St Paul's Church Birmingham, it's importance to the JQ and a photograph

In 1818 Robert has many entries in Wrightson's New Triennial Directory of Birmingham. He is listed as Robert Mitchell, Snowhill. More importantly he is listed under several categories, namely, Jewellers, Silversmiths, Thimble Makers, Gilt Toy and Watch Chain Makers, Merchants under the name Pemberton, Samuel, Son, and Mitchell.

The Northampton Mercury on the 17 April 1819 reported the following:

John Hawkesford, for stealing in Birmingham,3 watch cases, the property of Thomas Pemberton and Robert Mitchell.
John Payton, for stealing in Birmingham, a quantity of silver, the property of Thos. Pemberton and Robert Mitchell.

Interestingly, on the same page it also states:


John Bayliss, for stealing, in Birmingham, three ounces of scrap silver, the property of William Robinson and James Allport.

On 9 June 1820 Julia was born (possibly in Snowhill) but she wasn't to be baptised until 20 February 1835 on the same day as her younger brother Alfred. 

A notice appeared in the London Gazette on Tuesday, 13 February 1821.
The Partnership heretofore carried on between Thomas Pemberton and Robert Mitchell, of Birmingham, in the County of Warwick, Jewellers, Silversmiths and Watchmakers, under the firm of Samuel Pemberton, Son, and Robert Mitchell, has been dissolved by mutual consent. — Witness our hands this 9th day of February 1821.

Thomas Pemberton.
Robt. Mitchell.

THE Partnership heretofore subsisting and carried,on
between Thomas Pemberton and George Ellis Cooke, of Birmingham, in the County of Warwick, Jewellers and Factors,
hath been this day dissolved by mutual consent.— Witness our hands this 9th day of February 1821.

Thomas Pemberton.
George Ellis Cooke.

The Partnership heretofore subsisting and carried on
between Thomas Pemberton, Robert Mitchell, and,
George Ellis Cooke, of Birmingham, in the County of Warwick,
Jewellers and Factors, hath been dissolved by mutual,
consent.—Witness our hands this 9th day of February 1821.

Thomas Pemberton.
Robert Mitchell.
George Ellis Cooke.

Pictures of the mark can be viewed here.

Information found from 1824 suggests that on 9 February 1821 Thomas and Robert enter into a new partnership; with James Allport of New York, America.

On 23 May 1821 Robert registered another mark with the Birmingham Assay Office.

Robert Mitchell, silversmith of St Paul's Square, Birmingham, registered a mark on 23 May 1821 - RM

The entry from the Register of the Birmingham Assay Office:

Robert Mitchell
St Paul's Square,Birmingham
Mark registered May 23rd, 1821
Note dated March 27th 1822 states 'Removed to Bishopsgate Street'.
Sponsor's marks are RM in Times New Roman script with no surrounding shape, and RM in 
Times New Roman script contained within an oblong with right-angled corners.

This mark is includes the Birmingham Anchor and the letter Y which indicates that is it 1822. However, the RM letters do not appear to be 'within an oblong with right-angled corners'.

According to The Goldsmiths' Company - A Robert Mitchell, described as a smallworker, entered a mark on 4 September 1821 from 5 Jewin Street, Aldersgate Street, and a second mark on 22 May 1823. 

The Birmingham Assay Office holds a Silver Snuff Box with gilt interior. It's mark indicates it was made by Robert Mitchell in 1822. It is described as a 'rectangled box, the lid engraved with floral motifs on a matted ground with central square cartouche inscribed SP to CJ. Slightly moulded border with engraved wavy band. Scrolled thumbpiece. Sides with engraved scale pattern between two bands of dots. Base with alternate plain and simple patterned bands, with central engraved floral motif.'

As we now know, in 1822 he had 'removed' to Bishopgate Street. Alfred had been born on 5 October 1822 (possibly at Bishopgate Street). The Birmingham Assay office holds a snuff box made by Robert Mitchell which was registered at the Assay Office in 1822. The markers mark (?) shows Robert was at St Paul's Square, Birmingham. 

Another snuff box, pictures of which were taken off the internet, was also registered by the Birmingham Assay Office in 1822.

By 1823 Wrightson's Birmingham Trade Directory and Triennial Birmingham Directory show Robert Mitchell as a Jeweller of 30 Bath Row. 

I understand from a exhibition that was held (when?) that James Walker Ltd has a silver wine label from 1823 with the maker's mark RM; which I take to be Robert Mitchell. It was described as, 'Rectangle label, the deep border pierced and engraved with vines. Inscribed BUCELLAS. On a chain.'

The Law Advertiser for the year 1824 listed, for January 3, Partnerships Dissolved in the Country.

PEMBERTON Thomas, Robert Mitchell, and James Allport, Birmingham, and of New York, America, merchants and glass button manufacturers....................................................9 Feb. 1821

PEMBERTON Thomas, of Birmingham, and James Allport, of New York, America, merchants ....................................................23 Mar. 1823

Further details are given in the London Gazette on 3 January 1824.
THE Partnership subsisting and carried on between
Thomas Pemberton, Robert Mitchell, and James Allport,
of Birmingham, in the County of Warwick, and of
New York, in the United States of America, Merchants and Manufacturers
of Glass Buttons, was this day dissolved by
mutual consent. — Dated this 9th day of February 1824.

Thomas Pemberton.
Robt. Mitchell.
James Allport.

Notice is hereby given, that the Partnership or joint
trade lately subsisting and carried on between and by
the undersigned, Thomas Pemberton, of Birmingham, in the
County of Warwick, and James Allport, late of New York, in
the United States of America, Merchants, was and stands
dissolved on and from the 23d day of March last. — Dated, 22d.
day of December 1823.

Thomas Pemberton.
James Allport.

As already mentioned - According to The Goldsmiths' Company - A Robert Mitchell, described as a smallworker, entered ...second mark on 22 May 1823.

In 1824 Robert was also busy in his role of Guardian of the Birmingham Assay Office. The Birmingham Guardians ...... “A delegation of Guardians consisting of the High Bailiff (John Vale), Richard Spooner, S T Galton and Robert Mitchell attended in London with the object of smoothing the path of the Bill. ... In addition the Guardians expressed their thanks to Messrs Galton, Spooner, Vale and Mitchell "for their arduous and valuable Services in London" without whose support "the success of the Bill would have been very doubtful".

Need the name of the book and the author – probably Jennifer Tann – The Birmingham Assay Office 1773 – 1993

An Act for repealing so much of an Act of the Thirteenth Year of the Reign of His late Majesty King George the Third, intituled An Act for appointing Wardens and Assay Masters for assaying Wrought Plate in the Towns of Sheffield and Birmingham as relates to the Town of Birmingham and within Twenty Miles thereof and for granting further and more effectual Powers for assaying and marking Gold and Silver Plate wrought or made within the said Town of Birmingham and within Thirty Miles thereof and for other Purposes relating thereto. 17th May 1824.

And it states further on:

And be it further enacted That the Right Honourable the Earl of Warwick, James Alston, William Charles Alston, Anderson Ashmore, William Anderton, Matthew Robinson Boulton, Thomas Beilby, William Blakeway, Dugdale Stratford Dugdale, Samuel Galton, Samuel Tertius Galton, William Hamper, Hyde(?) Holden, Francis Lawley, Heneage Legge, Matthew Linwood, John Lawrence, Robert Mitchell, Theodore Price, Thomas Pemberton, William Phipson, James Pearson, Samuel Ryland, Westley Richards, John Rotten, George Simcox, Timothy Smith, Richard Spooner, Francis Sheppard, Joseph Taylor, Edward Thomason, William Villers, John Vale, William Wheelwright, Joseph Wilmore, and James Woodley(?) shall be and they are hereby appointed Guardians of the Standard of Wrought Plate of or belonging to the Town of Birmingham and within Thirty Miles thereof and the said Guardians shall be and they are hereby incorporated and declared to be a Company and shall be called or known by the Name of The Guardians of the Standard of Wrought Plate in Birmingham and by that Name shall have perpetual Succession, and from thenceforth for ever remain and continue to be a Body Politic and Corporate in Law to all Intents and Purposes, and shall have a Common Seal and shall be enabled to sue and be sued by that Name in all Courts and Places of Judicature within these Realms, and by that Name shall and may from time to time without Licence in Mortmain purchase and hold any Lands, Tenements or Hereditaments for the Purposes of this Act and the said Guardians hereinbefore named and their respective Successors to be appointed as hereinafter mentioned shall respectively continue Members of such Company so long as they shall occupy any Lands Tenements or Hereditaments in the said Town, or within Thirty Miles thereof.
Another notice appeared in the London Gazette on Saturday, 2 April 1825.

Notice is hereby given, that the Partnership heretofore
subsisting between Robert Mitchell and George Ellis
Cooke, as Wholesale Jewellers, in Jewin-Street, in the City
of London, was this day dissolved by mutual consent; and
that all debts due and owing to and by the said concern will
be paid and received by the said George Ellis Cooke, who
will continue the business on his own account: As witness
our hand this 7th day of January 1825.

Robt. Mitchell.
G. E. Cooke.

An advertisement appeared in the Birmingham Gazette on Monday, 18 April 1825 which stated:

ONE or two Pencil Case-makers wanted.
Swedish Copper also wanted. - Apply to
ROBERT MITCHELL, Bishopgate-street.

A beautiful caddy spoon, depicting the Brighton Pavillion, was discovered on Antique Silver Spoons website. It is believed to be made by Robert Mitchell and marked by the Birmingham Assay Office in 1825. The website describes it as:

Item: Caddy Spoon

Description: 'Brighton Pavilion'

Hallmark: Birmingham 1825 by R.Mitchell

Dimensions: 101 mm length

Comments:A very rare caddy shovel as illustrated and discussed on page 21 of "Caddy Spoons: An Illustrated Supplement" by John Norie. Although without provenance, this is almost certainly the actual spoon shown in the book and is described by Norie as "presently unique". The embossed decoration of the Brighton Pavilion to both the base and back of the shovel is very crisp. The original handle is made from ebony.

Another piece of work, also found on a website was a butter knife which was marked in 1826. (need to find the website address)

It may be that Robert's son, William, was following in his footsteps.

An entry from the Register of the Birmingham Assay Office:

William Mitchell
Livery Street,Birmingham
Mark registered February 1st 1826

Sponsor's mark is WM in Times New Roman script contained within an oblong with right-angled corners.

Things then seem to take a turn for the worst for Robert as can be seen from the following notice which appeared in the London Gazette on Saturday, 25 February 1826.

Whereas a Commission of Bankrupt is awarded and
issued forth against Robert Mitchell, of Birmingham,
in the County of Warwick, Jeweller, Silversmith, Dealer and
Chapman, and he being declared a Bankrupt is hereby required
to surrender himself to the Commissioners in the
said Commission named, or the major part of them, on the
10th and 11th of March next, at Four o'Clock in the Afternoon,
and on the 8th of April following, at Twelve o'Clock
at Noon, at the Royal Hotel, in Temple-Row, in Birmingham,
in the said County, and make a full Discovery and
Disclosure of his Estate and Effects ; when and where the
Creditors are to come prepared to prove their Debts, and at the
Second Sitting to chase Assignees and at the Last Sitting the
said Bankrupt is required to finish his Examination, and the
Creditors are to assent to or dissent from the allowance of his
Certificate. All persons indebted to the said Bankrupt, or
that have any of his Effects, are not to pay or deliver the 
same but to whom the Commissioners shall appoint, but give 
notice to Messrs. Norton and Chaplin, 3, Gray's-Inn-Square, 
London, or to Messrs. Spurrier, Ingleby, and Spurrier, Solicitors, 

The news of the bankrupt is also reported (from the London Gazette) in The Derby Mercury on Wednesday, 1 March 1826. 

On Saturday, 17 June 1826 the following was reported in the London Gazette. 

THE Commissioners in a Commission of Bankrupt, 
bearing date the 28th of January 1826, awarded and 
issued forth against Robert Mitchell, of Birmingham, in the 
County of Warwick, Jeweller, Silversmith, Dealer and Chapman, 
intend to meet on the 8th of August next, at Two of 
the Clock in the Afternoon, at the Royal Hotel, Birmingham, 
to Audit the Accounts of the Assignees of the Estate and 
Effects of the said Bankrupt under the said Commission. 

It was still going on in 1828 when on the Tuesday, 1 January the London Gazette gave the following notice:

THE Commissioners in a Commission of Bankrupt, bearing
date the 20th day of January 1826, awarded and issued
forth against Robert Mitchell, of Birmingham, in the County
of Warwick, Jeweller, Silversmith, Dealer and Chapman, in
tend to meet on the 22d day of January instant, at Eleven
o'clock in the Forenoon, at the Royal Hotel, in Temple-Row,
in Birmingham aforesaid, in order to Audit the Accounts of the
Assignees of the estate and effects of the said Bankrupt under
the said Commission.

Another notice swiftly appeared, again in the London Gazette, on Friday, 4 January 1828.

THE Commissioners in a Commission of Bankrupt, bearing
date the 20th day of January 1826, awarded and issued
forth against Robert Mitchell, of Birmingham, in the County
of Warwick, Jeweller, Silversmith, Dealer and Chapman, intend
to meet on the 25th day of January instant, at Eleven
in the Forenoon precisely, at the Royal Hotel, in Temple-Row,
in Birmingham aforesaid, in order to Audit the
Accounts of the Assignees of the estate and effects of the
said Bankrupt under the said Commission ; and also on the
same day, at Twelve at Noon, at the same, place, to make a
Dividend of the estate and effects of the said Bankrupt; when
and where the Creditors, who have not already proved their
debts, are to come prepared to prove the same, or they will
be excluded the benefit of the said Dividend. And all claims
not them proved will be disallowed.

In 1828 Robert is shown as a Jeweller & Silversmith of 80 Bath Street according to Pigot's & Co. He is still shown at this address in 1830 (this is the year that Thomas Pemberton died).

The following appears in the 1830 edition of The history, topography and directory of Warwickshire.

Mitchell Robert, jeweller and silversmith 80, Bath-st

And under Jewellers, Manufacturing:

Mitchell Rob. and silversmith, Bath-st

Interestingly in this section there is also a reference to

Pemberton and Postans, 33, Snowhill

And under Jewellery Stampers:

Cooke George, 87, Great Hampton-st.

(George Cooke had also had bankruptcy issues back in 1826).

Another notice appeared in the London Gazette on Tuesday, 15 March 1831 which I believe is for Robert's son, William.

William Mitchell, formerly of Livery-Street, in Birmingham,
in the County of Warwick, Silvermith and Jeweller, then of
Hunter's-Lane, near Birmingham, in the County of Stafford,
carrying on the business of a Silversmith and Jeweller,in
Greathampton-Street, in Birmingham aforesaid, then of
Saint Paul's-Square, in Birmingham aforesaid, Jeweller and
Silversmith, and Patent Pin Manufacturer, then of Blackfriars-Road,
London, Jeweller and Silversmith, then of
Finsbury-Pavement, London, Shopkeeper, then of Bath-Street,
in Birmingham aforesaid, Silversmith, then of Northwood-Street,
in Birmingham aforesaid, Silversmith, and
late of Constitution-Hill, in Birmingham aforesaid, Silversmith
and Pencil Case-Manufacturer.

And there were still problems for Robert judging by the notice in the London Gazette on Tuesday, 8 November 1831.

N. B. See the Notice at the end of this Advertisement.
The Matters of the PETITIONS and SCHEDULES
of the PRISONERS hereinafter named (the same
having been filed in the Court) are appointed
to be heard as follows :

At the Court-House at Warwick, in the County of
Warwick, on the 30th day of November 1831,
at Ten o'Clock in the Forenoon precisely.
Robert Mitchell the elder, heretofore of Bath, now of Birmingham,
Warwickshire, Jeweller and Silversmith, then
of Saint Paul's-Square, Birmingham, aforesaid, Jeweller and
Silversmith, and late of Bath-Street and of Whittall-Street,
Birmingham, aforesaid, Silver and Mosaic Pencil-Case-Maker.

This notice raises a question as it appears to indicate where Robert originated from with the comment, 'heretofore of Bath' but my concern is that this should read of Bath-Street although the wording 'now of Birmingham' does add to the confusion. If anyone is researching Mitchell's in Bath has a Robert that disappears around 1800 then please leave a comment.

Robert and Elizabeth, along with the rest of the family would probably have been celebrating on 29 October 1832 when their oldest son, William, was married. William married Sarah Butler at St Peter and St Paul's, Birmingham. The witnesses to the marriage were Edward Mitchell, A E Mitchell and E Mitchell.

Add History of St Peter's & St Paul's Church Birmingham and a photograph

By 1833 Robert is listed as a Jeweller & Silversmith of 56 Howard St. 

An advertisement appears in Aris's Birmingham Gazette on 16 September 1833.


TO be SOLD, two capital Rose Engines, made by Hulot, Paris, with double eccentric, straight lines, oval, pencil chucks, and other apparatus, suitable for Jeweller and Silversmiths' work, Watch Cases, Dials, &co.

Enquire at Robert Mitchell's, Howard-street, Constitution-hill.

Robert and Elizabeth were to lose another son.  Aris Gazette (Birmingham) records the death of William Mitchell who died at his father's house in Howard Street, aged 31, on 14 March 1834. He was buried seven days later on 21 March at St Paul's Church.  

On the 20 February 1835 Julia and Alfred were baptised at St Philip's, Birmingham. Two different abodes were given: Snowhill for Julia's birth in 1820 and Bishopgate Street for Alfred's birth in 1822.  Julia would have been coming up to 15 years of age and Alfred would have been 7 years old.

By 1835 Robert has moved again and is shown as Robert Mitchell & Co, Silversmiths at 24 Frederick St as shown by Wrightson's Trade Directory. But in Pigot's directory of the same year he is shown as Mitchell, Robert, Pencil Case Man, 24 Frederick St. 

There is an interesting reference in The Law Journal Reports for the year 1836.

Bankrupts, Certificates, and Dividends in the month of May 1836
Gazette, Tuesday, May 10.
Town and Country Fiats
BERRY Charles, now or late of Birmingham, in the county of Warwick, stationer, silversmith, d.c. (carrying on the trade of a silversmith, in co-partnership with Robert Mitchell, under the style or firm of Robert Mitchell & Co.) - Sols. Adlington & Co. Bedford-row, and Marshall, Birmingham. Fiat, April 27.
BERRY John, now or late of Birmingham, in the county of Warwick, glass-manufacturer, silversmith, d.c. - Sols. Adlington & Co. Bedford-row, and Marshall, Birmingham. Fiat, April 27.

There is reference to John Berry in the London Gazette of 10 May 1836.

And another one for Charles Berry '(carrying on the trade of a silversmith, in co-partnership with Robert Mitchell, under the style or firm of Robert Mitchell and Company) in the 15 July 1836 edition of the London Gazette. And the audit part of the process is reported in the Gazette on 23 August 1836.  And yet again on 16 June 1837.

If anyone has any knowledge of business in the early 1800's that can shed any light on the whys and the wherefores for someone carrying on in the 'style' of someone else's business - please share by leaving a comment.

Robert and Elizabeth would have been celebrating again when their son, Edward Mitchell, married Elizabeth Buckler by banns at St Bartholomews, Edgbastons Parish Church on 23 December 1837. Edward is shown a a Silversmith of Brierley Street. Elizabeth being the daughter of Nehemiah Buckler, a Plaster, of Constitution Hill.

Add History of St Bartholomew's Church Birmingham and a photograph

Robert Mitchell sadly died on the 12 May 1838 of consumption at his daughter's house at 22 Regents Place. Edward, newly married and living at 217 New John Street West, was present at his death. His father was 57 years of age. They buried him six days later on 18 May 1838 at St Paul's Church. Aris Gazette (Birmingham) remembered him thus:

Died, On Sat, last, at the home of his daughter, Regent's Place, Mr Robert Mitchell, in the 57th year of his age, sincerely lamented by his family and numerous circle of friends.

Robert missed the birth of his grand daughter, Elizabeth, on 17 January 1839 born at 217 New John Street West. Edward's happiness would be short lived when his wife of little over one year, Elizabeth, died 26 January. Aris Gazette remembered her thus:

Mitchell, Elizabeth wife of Edward Mitchell, silversmith of New John Street, daughter of N.Bucklee, Birmingham aged 21 d. 26 January 1839.

Elizabeth was just 21 years old and would not have had chance to enjoy her little baby girl. Edward registered the birth on 29 January 1839. Edward must have been having a terrible time. Recently married, just lost his father, and now his wife and he was left with a tiny baby he was unable to care for. This is probably the reason why his sister, Elizabeth, appears to have taken the baby into her home as hers. Edward is listed in the 1839 Wrightson's and Robson's Directory as a Silversmith at 217 John St West. A Miss Mitchell, Seminary of 22 Regent Place is listed in the same directory. This entry being for their daughter, Elizabeth Mitchell (jnr)? 

Elizabeth Mitchell sadly followed Robert quite quickly as a couple of years later on the 20 December 1840 she too died.  The cause is listed as 'Decay of Nature'.  Frederick Windus Winn was present at the death.  Aris Gazette remembered her.

Mitchell, Mrs Robert died at daughter's, Upper Hockley St, 60 years, 20 December 1840.

Elizabeth was buried 8 days later also at St Paul's Church on 28 December 1840.

By 1841 Edward Mitchell is shown in the ? Directory as a German Silver Pencil Casemaker of Court 7, Henrietta Street. 

Elizabeth was not to see her eldest daughter, Ann Eliza Mitchell, Schoolmistress, marry John Jaques, gun-maker (both of Upper Hockley Street, Birmingham) on the 14 April 1841 at St Peter & St Paul, Birmingham. John was a gun maker and the son of John Jaques (Gentleman). Elizabeth Mitchell and Robt Roberts were the witnesses.

Henry Mitchell by now a Silversmith married Lucy Dell Arnold on the 12 May 1842 at Harborne's Parish Church. Lucy had been born the 22 October 1815, the daughter of Francis Arnold and Mary Dell. (See their story... coming soon)

Edward Mitchell having lost his first wife, remarried on the 29 March 1842 in the Parish of Harborne. His new wife Hannah Beckett was the daughter of John Beckett (Tin Plate Worker). Edward is shown as a widower, full age and Hannah as a spinster, under age. The witnesses were Robert Nelson and Samuel Dugmore. (See their story)

Add History of Harborne Parish Church Birmingham and a photograph

It is rather interesting to find more London Gazette references for Robert Mitchell at this point in the 'story' since Robert has now been dead for over FOUR years! On Tuesday, 20 September 1842 the following was reported:

THE creditors who have proved their debts under a

Commission of Bankrupt awarded and issued forth

against Robert Mitchell, of Birmingham, in the county of

Warwick, Jeweller, Silversmith, Dealer and Chapman,

bearing date the 28th day of January 1826, are desired to

meet the assignees of his estate and effects, on Tuesday

the 4th day of October next, at eleven of the clock in the

forenoon, at Messrs. Spurrier and Chaplin's offices, in Paradise-street,

in Birmingham aforesaid, in order to assent to or

dissent from the said assignees selling, by public auction or
private contract, such of the book and other debts due and

owing to the said bankrupt's estate as now remain outstanding
and unreceived ; and on other special affairs.

And on page 2551 of the same publication, the following appeared:

THE Commissioners in a Commission of Bankrupt

bearing date the 28th day of January 1826, awarded

and issued forth against Robert Mitchell, of Birmingham,

in the county of Warwick, Jeweller, Silversmith, Dealer

and Chapman, intend to meet on the 19th day of October

next, at eleven o'clock in the forenoon, at the Waterloo-rooms,

Waterloo-street, in Birmingham aforesaid, in order
to Audit the Accounts of the Assignees of the estate and
effects of the said bankrupt under the said Commission,
pursuant to an Act of Parliament, made and passed
in the sixth year of the reign of His late Majesty King
George the Fourth, intituled "An Act to amend the laws
relating to bankrupts;" and the said Commissioners also
intend to meet on the same day, at twelve o'clock at noon,
and at the same place, in order to make a Further Dividend
of the estate and effects of the said bankrupt; when and
where the creditors, who have not already proved their debts,
are to come prepared to prove the same, or they will be excluded
the benefit of the said Dividend. And all claims not
then proved will be disallowed.

Robert and Elizabeth's other daughter, Elizabeth, who had cared for her mother at her death was to marry a couple of years later. She was already a surrogate mother to her brother's child, Elizabeth. On 8 April 1843, James Edwards (born England 1808 to Thomas Edwards and Elizabeth Haynes), Ironmonger, applied for a marriage licence for the solemnization of matrimony in the Parish Church of Saint George between him and Elizabeth Mitchell. They were married on 12 April 1843 at St George's, Birmingham. Thomas James and Emma Mitchell were the witnesses. (See their story)

Add History of St George's Church Birmingham and a photograph

A month later they were back in church once more, this time Harborne Parish Church for the marriage of Julia Mitchell to Thomas James on the 9 May 1843. James Edwards and Emma Mitchell were the witness. Julia married well. Her husband Thomas James was a leather dealer. They went on to have 10 children. (See their story)

Alfred Mitchell, of Constitution Hill, was only 28 years old when he died in 1851. He was buried on 28 January at St Paul's church, the same church as his brothers and his mother and father had been. We need more evidence to confirm that this is 'our' Alfred.

Is William Mitchell the lodger shown on the 1851 census at No 7 Court No 2 House, Ludgate Hill, Birmingham ( living with Charles and Elizabeth Bell) the William Mitchell shown on the census is an unmarried 50 year old Silver Plate Worker, born Birmingham, Warwickshire?

Is Robert Mitchell, 46, Commercial Traveller of Birmingham, Warwickshire, living with wife Maria Mitchell at 258 New John Street West in 1851 (HO/107/2058 folio 387 page 23) Robert and Elizabeth's son?

See my pinterest boards for examples of Mitchell and Pemberton's work.

James Allport

There is an interesting reference to a James Allport at this website.
  • James Allport was born at Hartley, Worcestershire, England, May 11, 1799. 
  • Brought up by his uncle Charles, who in 1816, sent him to New York, as an importer of hardware.
  • Worked with the firm of Corp, Ellis & Shaw.
  • He married Matilda Hunter (daughter of Major Andrew Hunter & Mary Evans)on 29 November 1831.
  • After making America his permanent home he apparently became a naturalized citizen of the United States.
  • Matilda and James had the following children - James C., born January 19, 1833; Mary 1., born December 16, 1834; Samuel C., born August 2, 1838; Catherine, born December 11, 1841; Matilda, born June 23, 1845; and Hobart, born March 3, 1848.
  • And James died 4 October 4 1854. It looks like this information was written up in 1898. 
There are also references to a James Allport on selling paintings from Pine St, New York.