Sharon Dowson-Middleton – The Dowsons

Sharon Dowson-Middleton wrote:

“I am a Dowson descendant, and all the Hamsterley Dowsons are related in some way. My most recent Dowson ancestor of Hamsterley was John born 1731 (born at Rackwood Hill to Thomas Dowson and Margaret Dixson). John married Ann Teasdale and moved into Witton-le-Wear, and their son was William Dowson (1761-1822) married Isabella Ramsay. They were Baptists, and I know William was buried in Hamsterley Baptist chapel in 1822 , but wondered if John was buried there – he was not alive in 1791 when his wife was described in a will as a widow. Would really appreciate it if someone can point me to a Hamsterley Baptist burials information, preferably online, because I can’t get to the UK to read the information.”

Keith House replied:

“I have gone through the records for Hamsterley Baptist Church held in Durham Records Office and extracted information on Dowson births and brurials recorded there. I can confirm that a Thomas Dowson of Witton le Wear was buried at the Chruch on 22nd May 1822. It gives his age as 56. There is no record of a William Dowson being buried that year or from Witton le Wear. I have looked at marriage records for Witton le Wear and found that it was Thomas Dowson who maried Isabella Ramsay not William on 7th May 1776. I have no information on a burial of John at this church.

“There was a George Dowson from Witton le Wear buried there on 27 November 1919 age 69.

“The non conformist records are on line at but it is a pay per view site and it is expensive if you want to view a lot of records.
My wife is from the Dowson family I have our tree on Ancestry web site. If you are a member I can let you have access to it. If you are interested let me know.”

Sharon Dowson-Middleton replied:

“Hi Keith, yes, we have connected on Ancestry now, but for the record in case anyone else comes across my original comments here, you are correct in that is was Thomas Dowson who married Isabell Ramsay, not William, and it was Thomas buried in 1822, I don’t know what I was thinking when I wrote William instead of Thomas (wish they had had more variety in their names)! Thanks for looking for John’s burial.”

John Rowley writes

“Searching for Dowson family connections who married into Teasdale (various spellings) and Redshaw. My ancestor laid the foundation stone for the Baptist Church in Hamsterley and is buried to the right of the door. Have quite a few families on my tree but would love to update it. I am on Ancestry or Genes Reunited. Feel free to contact me anytime. RE Thoms Dowson buried 1822 aged 56, was he off John Dowson and Tamar Hodgson?”

Alex Snook writes:

“I’m researching the Dowsons that lived in Hamsterley. I have Mary Gill (b~1864) who married Fredrick Joesph Dowson (b~1861) and had a number of children. Elizabeth Ada Dowson; Edwina Dowson; Ethel Dowson; John Thomas Dowson are confirmed, however I also have a Jane, Ann and a Thomas Dowson who I can’t find in the census or matching birth records. I was wondering if anyone knows about this family and can confirm the three siblings for me and if they know what happened to them. For such a small village a vast number of Dowson’s seemed to live there!”

If you can help with any information, please respond via the ‘Leave a Reply‘ box at the foot of the page.


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