Family History

Victorian childrenThis is a page for anyone wishing to make enquiries about their family connections with Hamsterley and South Bedburn.

See also the ‘Responses to Family History’ after the list of family pages.

If you have any queries about families not listed below, please use the ‘Leave a Reply’ box at the foot of this page. If you have any information about a family listed below, please use the ‘Leave a Reply’ box at the bottom of the appropriate Family page.

In order to keep this page manageable, I am removing unanswered queries that are more than a year old. If you stilll wish to follow up your query, please resubmit via the ‘Leave a Reply’ box.

Family pages

Hamsterley Lodge
Hamsterley School



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20 Responses to Family History

  1. pippa slark says:

    I’ve got a number of ancestors originating in Hamsterley going back to c.1550, The earliest names are Thomas Follansby c1550-1630, Stephen Sanderson c.1555-, and Thomas Stobbs c1550-. Would love to know anything about them or the families, as I just have names at present.

  2. Lindsay Smith says:

    I am interested in any information on my Great, Great Grandfather and Grandmother, George & Catharine Smith. The 1871 census has them at Redford Grove, South Bedburn, Durham, England and George working as a gardener. He had previously worked as a coachman and under-butler in other locations. George was born in Greenlaw, Scotland in approx 1811 and Catharine 1812, Fogo, Scotland. South Bedburn seems to be the last trace I can locate for them and I am wondering whether they died there and are buried locally. Any assistance greatly appreciated.

  3. Margaret says:

    I am trying to find information about Jane Hench (Hinch, Hensh?) and her family. Jane was born in Hamsterley around 1770. If anyone has any information on this family, I’d really appreciate hearing from you.

    • kathleen says:

      Dad used to talk about his elders and the name Magdalen Hence or Hench was married to Josiah Jewitt, she was born in Hamsterley in 1741 married in Hamsterley in 1767 and died in Romaldkirk in 1821.
      Sorry I don’t know if this can help you any further, but I just have the family tree on the Jewitt side back to 1615.

      • Susanne Proudfoot says:

        Dear Kathleen

        Josiah Jewitt and Magdalen Hence/Hench are my 5 x great grandparents. I know that Magdalen’s father was Jacob, but beyond that no more.

        If possible, I would be very interested to have sight of the Jewitt family tree back to 1615 as I have nothing further back than Josiah.

        Thanks for your help, Susanne

      • Peter Braney says:

        Hi Kathleen,
        The least known part of my genealogy is on my mum’s side. She was a Jewitt and her maternal side is Garrett. I know the family is connected to Hamsterley and have photos of Pond House and High House, plus another I have identified on Google Maps but don’t have a name for. I think you will be able to fill in lots of gaps for me as that side of the family is shrouded in mystery and is a bit of a mess. I have a Public Tree on Ancestry if you want to have a look “Braney Family Tree”. I hope to hear from you soon. Best regards, Peter

  4. William Savery says:

    I don’t know if anyone can be of help but I am trying to get some clarification with regard to my Grandfather and his parents. His name was James Savery we belive from cencus records he was born in West Auckland.
    I have acquired a birth cert from Durham County Council which states there was a James Savary (parents Henry & Rebecca Savary) born 24th May 1886 Foundry Yard in West Auckland in the sub district of Hamsterley …
    Could this be my Grand Father and Great Grand Parents?
    Are there any local records or local historians that could confirm this or help me investigate further.
    Unfortunately I can not travel to West Auckland as I live in Galway Ireland.
    I would appreciate any assisstance given to me with this matter.

    • admin says:

      Jonathan Peacock replies:

      I really can’t comment on the certificate you have been sent. It does sound quite likely, presuming that you know that your James’ father was called Henry (James’ marriage certificate and the census). There are unlikely to be other James, son of Henry in this area that fit – a check on the census for 1891 would demonstrate that.

      You should certainly expect spellings to float around at this time. I have been following one family through Spaulton, Spalden, Spalton etc. One can often hear dialect in the way the name was written, particularly when the persons themselves couldn’t write.

  5. Richard Gibson says:

    My birth mother was born Margaret Coward. On my birth certificate she gave her address as Garth House Hamsterley Barnard Castle. I was adopted, this was in 1942. I know that it is a very slim chance that there is anyone still in Hamsterley who will remember her family, but I would love to be able to build a family tree! Does Garth House still exist? Can anyone enlighten me?

  6. I am trying to find some information about the Hall family who lived at Washbeck Farm, Hamsterley, in the 1920’s and 1930’s. Morris Hall was killed in World War II and is buried in Holland, but I don’t know whereabouts. I know his name is on the war memorial in Hamsterley. It would be interesting to know more.

    • Edna Maughan says:

      Morris Hall was a member of a large family – maybe 10 or 11 children or even more.
      I knew some of the family, Elsie especially so. She was the last member of the family to leave Hamsterley to live at West Auckland to be near to her sister Bunty. She often talked about Morris dying from his wounds. I know the family farmed at Carrwood Hill and also prior to that at Monkfield Farm. I can’t recall her ever mentioning Wash Beck Farm. I know Bunty’s daughter was called Joan but don’t know her married name.
      Doris was married to Wilfred Miller, they had 3 daughters and a son called Bernard.
      I am sorry not to be of much help but know the family were at one time regular worshippers at the Baptist Chapel. Maybe if you wrote to the chapel they may be able to help with your research

  7. David White says:

    Can anyone help me information about my 3 times great grandmother Margaret Dixon who was born about 1795 in Hamsterley. She had 3 children, Eliza, Jane and John, all of whom I believe were illegitimate. I believe she was ‘moved’ from the village to live in Staindrop. Any information will be appreciated.

    • Margaret Howe says:

      I remember a family we called “the Whites” who lived in a cottage on the village green. I remember a mother and two or three sons (I remember them killing a pig one day) but I was very young at the time; it was in the 1940s. I wonder if they were the same family, descendants of the family, you are writing about?

      • David White says:

        Thank you for the reply Margaret. It is possible that some of the Whites lived in that area, but my main family of Whites came from Northumberland and settled in east Durham which is where I live. My main interest is of the Dixons who lived in Hamsterley in the 1820s, then were moved by order to Staindrop. The Whites came to Co. Durham later in the century.

  8. Margaret Howe says:

    Some of our friends in Hamsterley may be sad to hear that Dora Maguire (nee Jolly) aged 100, died peacefully early on the 1st of May at Connaught Court, York. She was the loved wife of Frank, the loving mother of Margaret and Derek, grandmother to Carolyn, Elisabeth, Kate and Jane, great grandmother to Danielle, Jacob, Georgia Lee, Melissa, Alice, Lawrence and Emilia.
    The funeral will take place on Tuesday 13th May.

  9. Kathleen Cook says:

    I havent contacted this site for some time but still researching my family history. I have found a William Race who resided in Park Villa around 1894. Is there stll a house of this name in Hamsterley?

  10. A Hodgson says:

    My ancestors named Hodgson were all from the Hamsterley area. One especially was named Thomas. Has anyone any information please. Thank you.

  11. kev grundon says:

    I live in Australia.I am researching my family tree looking for info re my great great great grandfather Robert Grundon who was born in Hamsterley in 1783. Any information would be really appreciated.

  12. Susanne says:

    Josiah Jewitt and Magdalene Hench are my 5 x great grandparents. I know that Magdalene’s father was Jacob, but have no more information on Josiah’s parents. I noticed that a lady called Kathleen on this site had family information on the Jewitts going back to the 1600s. Would it be possible to get a copy of this please?

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