Eliza (1) Woodhurst

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Brief biography

Eliza (1) Woodhurst was born to parents William (1) Woodhurst and his wife Elizabeth Clements. She was christened on December 10th 1812 at Frindsbury in Kent [Frindsbury Parish Register].

She appears also to have been christened - perhaps privately or in a different church - four days previously, as the Ancestry website holds a record of an Eliza Woodhurst being christened to parents William and Elizabeth on December 6th 1812 in Dartford, Kent [Ancestry database : England & Wales Christening Records : Dartford 1806-1812 : Film No. 1469180]. The borough of Dartford includes Crayford parish in which two of Eliza (1)'s brothers were later christened.

She had a brush with the law in early 1840 as indicated by the following case summary published in the online Proceedings of the Old Bailey, she having appeared at the Central Criminal Court on April 6th 1840 charged with larceny:

1137. ELIZA WOODHOUSE was indicted for stealing, on the 21st of March, 36 yards of ribbon, value 4s., the goods of Rebecca Holmes.

MATILDA HANNAH LUCKIE. I am assistant to Rebecca Holmes, who keeps a linen-draper's shop at Hackney. On the 21st of March the prisoner, who was a stranger, came and inquired for some mousseline-de-laine dresses - she chose one, which was to be put by till half-past seven o'clock - she then looked at some fringe and lace, and then wanted to look at some lining for her dress - she went to the opposite counter, where her dress was, to see the colour - I saw her put something into a small bag which she carried, and which I imagined to be a piece of ribbon - I went into the next room, and stated what I had seen - my brother came out, and missed a piece of ribbon - he charged her with taking it - she denied it at first, and then said she had taken it, and begged forgiveness - I sent for a policeman - this ribbon was found in her bag.

WILLIAM JOHN LUCKIE. My sister gave me information - I went into the shop, counted the ribbons, and missed one piece - the prisoner at first denied having it, then said she had, and begged forgiveness.

(The prisoner received a good character.)

GUILTY. Aged 27. - Confined Two Months.

Although her surname is given incorrectly above as Woodhouse, it is given correctly as Woodhurst in her entry in the Middlesex County Assizes Register of Persons charged with Indictable Offences in 1840.

The 1841 Census finds her at (rounded) age "25" living in the household of a Jane Thom(p)son in St. John Hackney, London. Also present was a "John Warner" with (rounded) age "15", this being her future husband John Joseph Warner. He was christened at Lewisham on June 15th 1823 to parents Benjamin Warner and his wife Maria [IGI: Batch C006683]. His occupation is hard to read in the schedule but is probably labourer. At the time of this census Benjamin and Maria were also in St. John Hackney, living with their two daughters Sarah and Isabella in Sheep Lane. Benjamin was occupied as a gardener.

Eliza (1) and John Joseph married in 1844. Their marriage certificate [Marriage Index: Stepney 2 411, 1844 (June)] states that they married on May 26th 1844 at the Parish Church of St. Anne in Limehouse. She is described as a spinster of full age and her husband as a bachelor and labourer of full age. Their fathers are named as William Woodhurst and Benjamin Warner, both of them gardeners. Both parties' place of residence is given simply as Limehouse. Neither could sign their name. The witnesses were Edward Manley and Hannah Frampton whose connections are unknown. The latter may have been the Hannah Frampton whom the GRO records as dying the following year [Death Index: Shoreditch 2 265, 1845 (Dec)].

In 1849 Eliza (1) served - as "Eliza Warner" - as the informant of the death of her infant niece Hannah Ellen Woodhurst - the daughter of her brother Richard William (1) (RWW) - and was then living at 5, Victoria Place in Bethnal Green. No apparent relations were living at any of the three streets named "Victoria Place" in Bethnal Green at the time of the 1851 Census.

By 1851 she had separated from John Joseph and had partnered another man named Isaac Fry. Isaac was christened on July 16th 1809 at St. Mary Whitechapel in Stepney to parents James Fry and his wife Elizabeth [IGI: Batch C025575]. His parents may have been the James Fry and Elizabeth Flemming who married on January 7th 1804 at the Old Church in St. Pancras [IGI: Batch M047937]. The 1841 Census appears to find Isaac aged "30" living with his mother at 4, Irish Row in East Ham, Essex and occupied as a rope maker. The 1851 Census finds Isaac living in Stratford-le-Bow with Eliza (1), described as his "wife". Her age is given as "39" and her birthplace as Frindsbury, Kent. He was occupied as a road labourer. There were no children with them.

Meanwhile, by 1851 John Joseph had also taken a new partner Phoebe Vial. The 1851 Census finds him - aged "27" with birthplace Lewisham - living with Phoebe, described as his "wife", at 2, Ely Place, Globe Road in Stepney. Her birthplace is given as Clerkenwell. He was occupied as a splint cutter employing 3 "lads". Also present was a boy Thomas "Warner" aged "11" who was Phoebe's illegitimate son Thomas Hamblet. Also present were two of Phoebe's brothers - Alfred Stephen Vial occupied as a cabinet carver and Frederick James Vial occupied as an apprentice chair maker, both unmarried.

The 1861 Census finds Eliza (1) living with Isaac Fry in South Hackney as a separate household within the same house as her sister Hannah (1). Isaac was now occupied as a bricklayer's labourer. Eliza (1) is described as aged "45" and born in Frindsbury. Again, there were no children with them.

In 1867 Eliza (1) married - as "Eliza Warner" - to Isaac [Marriage Index: Bethnal Green 1c 581, 1867 (Sept)]. She may have waited until then for the death of her former husband John Joseph.

She died - as "Eliza Fry" - aged "57" in early 1871 [Death Index: Mile End Old Town 1c 447, 1871 (March)].

The 1871 Census finds Isaac Fry aged "62" and widowed living at 4, Willow Street in Mile End Old Town, the same address at which Eliza (1)'s sister Ellen (1) was also living. He is described as a labourer born in Mile End Old Town.

Isaac died aged "65" in early 1875 [Death Index: Mile End 1c 437, 1875 (March)].

The ultimate fate of John Joseph Warner has not yet been ascertained.

Her children by John Joseph Warner

  1. apparently none ...

Her children by Isaac Fry

  1. apparently none ...