Inherited Craziness
A place to share all the nuts found on my family tree

Friday, 26 February 2021

Robert Middleton and Mary Pyke

The Square, North Tawton
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Derek Harper - geograph.org.uk/p/2768080

Robert Middleton, bap. 4 Jun 1826 in Knowstone, son of Robert Middleton and Elizabeth Baker, elder brother of Jane Middleton, married Mary Pyke, bap. 1 Feb 1829, daughter of Hugh Pyke a Cordwainer, in the town of North Tawton in Devon and his wife, Elizabeth Ellis, in 1855. The marriage may well have taken place at her parish of St Peter's, North Tawton
A cordwainer is a shoemaker who makes new shoes from new leather. The cordwainer's trade can be contrasted with the cobbler's trade, according to a tradition in Britain that restricted cobblers to repairing shoes.
At home with her parents in Oakhampton Street, North Tawton, in 1841, Mary was the third of five children: John Pyke (15), Jane Pyke (14), Mary Pyke (11), Samuel Pyke (9) and Sarah Pyke (6). There was a further sister, Elizabeth Pyke, two years younger than Sarah. At that time, Robert Middleton, then 15, was already out working, as an Ag Lab, for William Follett at Bransford, Knowstone. 

Unable to find the couple in 1861, by the time we catch up with them in 1871, in Sampford Courtenay,  Robert was still employed as an Ag Lab, and in 1881, in Brightley, Okehampton, when Robert has become a Railway lab - Packer, we find they've been a bit busy. They have at least 7 children: 
  1. James Middleton born 1860  
  2. Thomas Middleton born 1862
  3. Sarah Ann Middleton born 1864
  4. Robert Middleton born 1867
  5. Mary Middleton born 1870
  6. William Middleton born 1873
  7. John Middleton born 1874
Robert Middleton died, aged 63, and was buried on 20 Jul 1889, in Okehampton. In 1891, the widowed Mary had moved into the household of her now married daughter, Mary, and her husband, John Lang, in Oakhampton and stayed with them for the rest of her life. In 1901, aged around 70, Mary was described as a Monthly nurse. Mary died in 1912, aged 84.

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