Thomas Sarginson (1835-1869) and his wife Mary Beaty (1840-1892)

Whilst I was researching Thomas and his family, I found a record for Mary and their two sons that showed they were living with her father in the 1871 census in Longtown, Cumberland. Both Mary and her father Robert (born about 1814) described themselves as widowed.  My next step was to find out more about Thomas. I found a death record for him and a number of newspaper articles which described how he had committed suicide in Longtown in 1869. 

Thomas had been baptised on 9 October 1835 in the Wesleyan Methodist Chapel in Appleby, Westmorland. His parents were Thomas Sarginson (born about 1808) and his first wife Mary Richardson (1805-1838). The register records his father’s occupation as a veterinary surgeon. After his mother died Thomas’ father married Ann Rockliff (1808-1871) with whom he had another son William (born 1843). The following descendant chart shows the family relationships:

Descendant Chart for Thomas Sarginson

By 1851 the family had moved to Newcastle upon Tyne in Northumberland when Thomas senior gave his occupation as a chemist. They had moved back to Westmorland by the 1861 census and by that time Thomas junior had met and married Mary Beaty. The household census entry reads as follows:

AddressNameRelation to Head of FamilyConditionAge MAge FRank, Profession or OccupationWhere born
ColbyThomas SarginsonHeadMarried52 Veterinary practitionerNewbiggin Cumberland
 Ann SarginsonWifeMarried 53 Penrith Cumberland
 William SarginsonSonUnmarried 18ScholarAppleby Westmorland
 Thomas SarginsonLodgerMarried25 Student Royal Veterinary College EdinburghAppleby Westmorland
 Mary SarginsonWifeMarried 24 Scotland
1861 Census for Thomas and family

Interestingly, Thomas the younger’s entry listed him as a lodger, not a son, and it was annotated with the words “practising as a veterinary surgeon”. Thomas and Mary went on to have two sons:

  • William Robert Sarginson (1861-1931) – his birth was registered in Longtown but he did not consistently use this information on later census records.
  • Frederick Arthur Sarginson (1864-1877) – his birth was registered in Longtown and his death on 26 September 1877 in Barrow in Furness, Lancashire.  His mother Mary registered his death and their address was given as 29 Napier Street, Barrow.

Thomas committed suicide, at the age of 34, on 11 October 1869 in Longtown, Cumberland. He had obtained prussic acid from a local surgeon, Dr Francis Graham, citing his need for it professionally as a veterinary surgeon (Carlisle Patriot, 15 October 1869, page 4). An inquest was held into his death presided over by the coroner, Mr Carrick, and a jury was appointed (Cumberland and Westmorland Advertiser and Literary Chronicle, 19 October 1869, page 4).

Although he was said to have a good business, initially practicing in Westmorland and then Penrith, he was reported to have taken to drinking and been unkind to his wife Mary. In her evidence to the inquest Mary said that they had been married for nine years and had two children. She had left him four years ago and retuned to Longtown to live with her father. Three months ago, Thomas had persuaded Mary to return to him but a week before his death had left saying that he was going to collect money but he didn’t return. She had been left without money for food and all the furniture in the house, except the children’s bed, had been removed by her husband’s aunt and uncle. The only food they had had been provided by the neighbours. Mary had written to Thomas advising him of their plight but he hadn’t come home so she retuned to her father Robert Beaty’s house in Longtown (Cumberland and Westmorland Advertiser and Literary Chronicle, 19 October 1869, page 4). Robert was the gateman at Longtown railway station. Mary described her husband as:

Deceased looked very wild when he got drink, and was very passionate. He was much reduced in circumstances. She had always done her duty as a wife to him, the quarrels taking place through his drinking.” (Cumberland and Westmorland Advertiser and Literary Chronicle, 19 October 1869, page 4).

When Thomas returned to the home he shared with Mary and his children on 11 October he found that it was deserted; he then made his way to Longtown where he bought the prussic acid, half an ounce in a small phial. Dr Graham described Thomas as being sober and cleanly dressed (Cumberland and Westmorland Advertiser and Literary Chronicle, 19 October 1869, page 4).

After buying the acid Thomas went to his father-in-law’s house to see his wife. He was refused access, took the acid and fell down. What happened next was described as follows:

He was carried at once to the waiting room of the station and medical assistance brought, but it was of no avail, he died about an hour later, apparently without pain.”  (Carlisle Patriot, 15 October 1869, page 4)

The jury found that the “deceased had committed suicide by poison while insane”.

OS Cumberland X 1868 – extract showing Longtown and the railway station

 There is a postscript to this story as regards Dr Francis Graham. He was fined 5s at the Longtown Petty Sessions for “unlawfully selling a quantity of prussic acid without labelling the bottle with the word poison” (Christchurch Times, 30 October 1869, page 7).

After the death of Thomas, Mary continued to live in Longtown with her father and sons until at least the 1871 census:

AddressNameRelation to Head of FamilyConditionAge MAge FRank, Profession or OccupationWhere born
Longtown CottageRobert BattieHeadWidower56 GatekeeperLongtown, Cumberland
 Mary SargensonDaughterWidow 30DomesticLongtown, Cumberland
 William SargensonSon 9 ScholarLongtown, Cumberland
 Frederick SargensonSon 6 ScholarLongtown, Cumberland
1871 Census for Robert, Mary and her sons

The family left Longtown sometime before Robert Beaty’s death on 9 September 1892. His death certificate records that he died at 43 Napier Street, Hindpool, Barrow-in-Furness, Lancashire. Robert was described as a general labourer and his daughter Mary was the informant for his death. Mary was also the informant for her son Frederick’s death on 28 September 1877 when they were living at 29 Napier Street.

Thomas and Mary’s oldest son, William (1861-1931) was boarding with the Abbott family at 29 Napier Street, in the 1881 census. He was described as a fitter born in Appleby, Westmorland. The head of the household was Victor Abbott, a railway guard.

Mary continued to live in Barrow-in-Furness and in 1891 she was living in James Street with her occupation given as a monthly nurse. Mary died on 12 March 1892 at 18 James Street. Her son William was the informant when her death was registered. By then he was living at 16 Oxford Street, Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham.   William met and married Eliza Dunning (1865-1932) and together they had six children. In the 1911 census he was described as an engine fitter.

I am interested in knowing more about all the people mentioned in this blog post. Do contact me if you have any further information which you are willing to share.

Note: the map used in this blog has been reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland under the following creative commons licence and sourced from the NLS maps site


Appleby, Westmorland. : accessed March 2021.

Baptisms, marriages and burials. : accessed March 2021.

Barrow-in-Furness, Lancashire. : accessed March 2021.

Census records. : accessed March 2021.

Longtown, Cumberland. : accessed March 2021.

Newspapers. Collection: British Newspaper Collection. : accessed March 2021.

OS Maps. : March 2021.

William Sargison killed by lightning

Sometimes, when researching people, a specific record catches your eye. This was certainly the case with William Sargison (1786-1811), whose burial record from the parish of St Mary the Virgin, Cottingham, dated 14 June 1811, indicated that he was the son of Thomas (Sergeason/Sergesson) and gave his cause of death as “killed by lightening”. At the time of the incident Cottingham was located in the East Riding of Yorkshire, near to Hull, and its position has been marked on the following map (see bibliography for map attribution):

Map from Vision of Britain website

William is included in the “Sargison South Cave and beyond tree” which includes people living in Cottingham.

The story of William’s death seems to have been picked up by newspapers outside the local area. For example, a report in the Salisbury and Winchester Journal (24 June 1811, page 4) reported that:

During a thunderstorm at Cottingham, near Hull, on Wednesday afternoon, Mr Sarjeson, his son William, and his nephew, being all engaged in hoeing turnips, the former at the end of the field and the nephew and son at the other, the latter (son) was suddenly struck dead by the lightening, his face on one side was completely scorched, and his hat, clothes and shoes, all rent to pieces.

In other reports William’s age was given as 22 and that he was “a remarkably steady young man” (Stamford Mercury, 21 June 1811, page 3). None of the reports identify his father by his first name although they do report his surname in a number of different ways: Sargerrison and Sarjeson are just two examples.

William was buried in the churchyard of St Mary the Virgin, Cottingham, Yorkshire (see bibliography for photograph attribution):

St Mary the Virgin, Cottingham, Yorkshire

William was the youngest of two sons born to Thomas Sargison (1747-1825) and his wife Jane Milburn (1746-1815). His elder brother Thomas (1773-1839) continued to live in Cottingham with his wife and children. Thomas and William also had seven sisters, some of whom I’ve been able to trace. The following chart shows Thomas, Jane, and the children and grandchildren that I’ve found so far.

Descendant chart for Thomas and Jane


Baptisms, marriages and burials. : accessed March 2021.

Cottingham. : accessed March 2021.

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Cottingham, in East Riding of Yorkshire and East Riding | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time. URL:  Date accessed: 11th March 2021

Newspapers. Collection: British Newspaper Collection. : accessed March 2021.

St Mary the Virgin, Cottingham. East Riding Archives, CCO, via Wikimedia Commons : accessed March 2021.

Ronald Ragsdale Sargison 1910 to 1987

Ronald (a member of the Sargison South Cave and beyond tree) was born on 10 November 1910 in Nottingham, England to parents Percy John Sargison (1876-1952) and Lucy Ann Ragsdale (1878-1951). At the time of the 1911 census Percy was described as a draper and outfitter and the family were living at 95 Sherwood Street, Nottingham. By 1939 Percy and Lucy had moved to 29 Ribblesdale Road and Percy was a credit draper and outfitter. In contrast their son Ronald was a Clerk in Holy Orders, single and living with Clarence and Elizabeth Beardall at Woodlands, Mansfield Woodhouse, Nottinghamshire.

The following timeline for Ronald’s career has been constructed using a combination of primary sources (education, newspaper articles, passenger lists, probate records and electoral registers) and secondary sources. I was only able to access online resources which I subscribe to so have not been able to utilise clergy related occupational sources like Crockfords Clerical directory.

Table 1: Timeline for Ronald 1930-1951

Ronald married Olive Thompson (1910-1979), a widow, in Q4 1951, in Nottingham. Olive’s first husband, Frederick Thomas Thompson (1907-1951), had died on 28 June 1951. Olive had three children with her first husband, two of whom accompanied them when they went to Guyana in 1956. After their marriage the following table shows what happened next to Ronald’s career and his new family.

Table 2: Timeline for Ronald and Olive 1962-1964

The ship Ronald, Olive and family travelled to Guyana was called the Arakaka. It had been built in Teeside and was launched in 1946 as a cargo steamer. On its voyage in 1956 it carried 12 passengers and was operated by the Booker Line.

Secondary sources suggest that after his return to England, Ronald was the vicar of churches in Balham, and Hawthorn and Trimdon, both in County Durham. Ronald and his wife Olive moved at some point to Dulverton Hall in Scarborough, a home for retired clergy, which was replaced by a new property in 2002. Olive died in Q3 1979 and Ronald on 18 October 1987. Both their deaths were registered in Scarborough.  

I am interested in knowing more about all the people mentioned in this blog post. Do contact me if you have any further information which you are willing to share.


Carrington nr Basford. : accessed January 2021.

Dulverton Hall, Scarborough. : accessed January 2021.

England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1966, 1973-1995. : accessed January 2021.

FindmyPast British Newspaper Collection. : accessed January 2021.

Goodrich, Revd Derek, H. (1994) A Short History of St George’s, Georgetown, Guyana. Georgetown: Revd Derek H. Goodrich.

Kneesall. : accessed January 2021.

London, England, Electoral Registers, 1832-1965. : accessed January 2021.

Passenger Lists Leaving UK, 1890-1960. : accessed January 2021.

Ronald Ragsdale Sargison. : accessed January 2021.

Tees Built Ships. : accessed January 2021.

UK, British Army Records and Lists, 1882-1962. : accessed January 2021.

UK, Incoming Passenger Lists, 1878-1960. : accessed January 2021.

UK, University of London Student Records, 1836-1945. : January 2021.

West Yorkshire, England, Electoral Registers, 1840-1962. : accessed January 2021.

Hallgate Zion Independent chapel in Cottingham, Yorkshire

Whilst I was working on the Sargison tree which, includes people in the parishes of Eastrington, South Cave and Cottingham, I came across a couple who had had three children baptised in the Hallgate Zion Independent chapel. The children of Thomas Sargison (1773-1839) and Mary Kitchin (1774-1857) were as follows:

  • Jane (1803-1834) baptised on 10 Oct 1803.
  • Sarah (1806-1871) baptised on 3 Sept 1806.
  • Thomas (1811-1846) baptised on 18 March 1811.

At the time of their baptisms the congregation worshipped in a pre-1800 Presbyterian chapel located in Hallgate, Cottingham. The Presbyterian congregation had become Independent after the death of the Arian Minister, Edward Dewhirst, in 1784.   The chape was replaced in 1819 by a new building (Zion United Reform Church) which is now listed on the Historic England website.

Cottingham in the early 1800s was considered a large village with upwards of 2000 inhabitants. Although Thomas was a labourer, he was listed in the Poll Books of 1830 and 1832. Certainly in 1831 the largest occupational group in the census were agricultural labourers and it is likely that Thomas worked on the land until his death in 1839.

By 1841 the population of Cottingham had grown to more than 2500 people. Two new streets had been built near the Hallgate chapel: George Street and Crescent Street. In the 1841 census Mary and two of her children, Sarah and Thomas, were living in George Street with another possible member of the extended family, Mary Sarginson aged 45. All three ladies were described as laundresses. Mary’s son Thomas was aged 30 but had no occupation recorded against his entry. The following extract from the 1855 OS map shows the position of the two new streets and the Hallgate chapel.

Extract from OS Map (1855) Yorkshire 225

By the 1851 census Mary’s son Thomas had died and it was just Mary and her daughter Sarah who lived Crescent Street. Mary’s occupation was laundress and Sarah “at home”. Mary died in 1857 and was buried in the churchyard of St Mary’s, Cottingham. Her daughter Sarah was then left without immediate family and she was admitted to the North and East Riding of Yorkshire Lunatic Asylum in Clifton (near York), Yorkshire on 10 November 1860. A series of records from the Sculcoates Poor Law Union, catalogued at the East Riding Archives, show that she was regularly recorded in their returns of pauper lunatics from 1861-1871. The asylum census recorded Sarah as a charwoman from Cottingham in both 1861 and 1871. She died in the asylum on 5 May 1871 with her age given as 66. She was the last member of her immediate family.

I am interested in knowing more about the people mentioned in this blog post. Do contact me if you have any further information which you are willing to share.

Note: the map used in this blog has been reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland under the following creative commons licence and sourced from the NLS maps site


Cottingham. : accessed December 2020.

Cottingham. : accessed December 2020.

Elrington, C. R. ed. (1979) Victoria County History: A History of Yorkshire, East Riding Volume IV. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 61-84.

OS (1855) Yorkshire 225 Map. : accessed December 2020.

Zion United Reform Church. : accessed December 2020.

Planned website re-organisation in 2021

I have recently returned to my one name study after quite a long break while I completed by MSc in genealogy at Strathclyde University. Having taken the opportunity to look at my site with fresh eyes, and having responded to a number of queries from people over the last year or so, I decided that it needs to be re-organised. In addition, much of the data behind the site is held by myself and having recently seen a lot of emails about preserving one name studies I think that now is the time to clean everything up as much as possible and take advantage of the arrangements the Guild of One Name Studies have put in place to assist with this.

Tidying up my study and taking advantage of the 1921 census which, should be available at some point next year will keep me busy for some time. In the mean-time though my plan is to re-arrange and update the information I have on the main pages of the website. At the moment family groups are arranged by surname variants. This isn’t an exact science though, as within any one family group there are a number of different spellings of surnames, so it can be a challenge to find a specific family group or individual.

What I have done is review each of the family trees I’ve created so far to identify the earliest known ancestor in each one and where they are from. I have also looked more closely at where else members of these family trees can be found, including in countries outside the UK.

Finally, I now have a plan to create a set of different sections for my website which better reflects the origin of each of the family trees as shown below.

Note re abbreviations:

Richard Sargeson (died 1890) blacksmith and Glengarry County resident

I was alerted to the existence of Richard Sargeson, a resident in Ontario, Canada in the nineteenth century some while ago. I developed a tree for those of his descendants I could find using existing online resources and then set aside the issue of where he had come from in England. His burial record in the MacMillan pioneer cemetery in the Lancaster township in the historic county of Glengarry in Ontario Canada provides the following intriguing information about him:

“Richard Sargeson born May the 24, 1789 departed his life April the 16 1890 aged 101 years 11 months & 8 days native of Cumberland England” (The source for this information is the Lonely Stones website mentioned in the bibliography.)

Some members of Richard’s family are buried in the cemetery, including his son Isaac (1840-1903) and both of Isaac’s wives: Catherine Ann McMillan (1841-1879) and Virginia Sayeau/Seguin (1854-1943). The cemetery itself is situated on Concession 7, lot 24 on the north side of Lancaster township. It seems to have been built on land originally settled by the McMillan family and contains burials for mainly members of the McMillan and McKay families. Concession 7 lot 24 was originally settled by Donald McMillan. Members of the McMillan clan were some of the original Scottish settlers in the county of Glengarry.  A plan of the Lancaster township from 1862 show that Concession 7 lot 24 was at that time held by William McMillan (1799-1871). 

There are two specific issues which I have been trying to resolve with regards to Richard and his descendants:  where in Cumberland did Richard come from and was his son Isaac’s first wife, Catherine Ann McMillan, related to the other members of the McMillan family buried in the cemetery?

Richard and his Cumberland origins

In order to search for Richard in the Cumberland baptism records I needed some idea of his date of birth. According to the burial record found in the MacMillan pioneer cemetery he died on 16 April 1890 aged 101 years, 11 months and 8 days old. The record of his death in the Ontario, Canada, Deaths and Deaths Overseas (1869-1948) collection on Ancestry also gives his date of death as 16 April 1890 and his age as 101 years and 11 months. It records that he was born in Cumberland, England, his occupation as a blacksmith and that he died of old age. The informant was probably his son Richard Surgeson (1855-1915). Based on these two records his suggested birth date is 1788/89. However, his age in earlier records do vary somewhat as follows:

1851 Census Lancaster, Glengarry County – Richard gave his age as 58 implying his birth was about 1793. He was a blacksmith and occupying Concession 6 lot 24 with his wife Fanny (Roman Catholic) and six children who, together with Richard, were all described as Church of England.

1861 Census Lochiel, Glengarry County – Richard gave his age at next birthday as 71 implying a birth date of around 1790. The family were living in a two-storey log house built in 1820. Richard was described as a blacksmith and farmer and two of his son’s occupations were also recorded: George was a blacksmith and Isaac a labourer. Richard and Fanny had eight children in their household and their daughter Elizabeth’s name was now recorded as Escet. The family all gave their religion as Church of England, except their mother Fanny, who was Roman Catholic. Neither Richard nor Fanny could read or write.

1871 Census Lochiel (Division No. 2), Glengarry County – in this record Richard age was 77, implying he was born about 1794. His wife Frances, daughter Jane and son Richard were living with him as well as his son Isaac, Isaac’s wife Catherine and their three children. Richard and his children’s religion were given as Church of England, Frances as Catholic and Isaac’s wife Catherine’s as Church of Scotland. Richard was a farmer and neither he nor his wife Frances were able to read or write.

1881 Census Lancaster (Division No. 2), Glengarry County – in this census Richard gave his age as 85, implying he was born about 1796. He was a farmer living with his wife Frances with his religion as Church of England and hers as Catholic.  They also had two children living with them: Fanny Porter aged 10 and Richard Porter aged 8, both of whom had been born in the USA. Perhaps they were their grandchildren?

Just nine years after this census was taken Richard’s age at death in 1890 was recorded as 101 years 11 months implying his birth about 1788/9. However, as can be seen from the varied ages given in his census records, he did not age from census to census in 10-year increments. Based on his age in 1881, when he died in 1890, he could have been 94 years old suggesting a birth age of 1796. The censuses of 1871 and 1881 also recorded that he couldn’t read or write.

A search for a possible baptism in the online baptism records for Cumberland based on a possible birth date of 1796 did not initially find a possible baptism for him. Widening the search to look for records of baptisms for 1796 plus or minus 10 years identified a possible baptism: Richard Sargison baptised on 30 November 1806 to parents George Sargison (1776-1862), a blacksmith, and Ezat/Ezed Wright (1771-1843,) in Cumwhitton, Cumberland, England. Whilst at first glance this looks too late a date to be a record for Richard, there are a couple of things which make it worth considering. First of all, the family of George and Ezat in Cumberland had a son called Isaac (181-1893) who went onto become a blacksmith.

Secondly his potential mother’s first name is unusual: Ezat/Ezed. It does look like Richard and Fanny named one of their children after her: Escet/Elizabeth born about 1842 and then two of their children named a daughter in a similar fashion. Their son Isaac and his first wife Catherine named one of their daughters Essette (Elizabeth) Sargeson who was baptised a Catholic on 14 August 1870 in Lochiel, Glengarry County. Her birth date was recorded as 17 June 1869 and her parents were Isaac Sargeson and Catherine Ann McMillan. Her sister Margaret was baptised on the same day and her birth date given as 14 May 1867. In addition, Richard and Fanny’s daughter Jane named her first child Essette Annie Hope (1874-1956).

It does seem possible therefore that Richard’s origin could have been Cumwhitton in Cumberland, however more information about his origins would be helpful. The following chart outlines what I’ve been able to find out so far for him and his immediate descendants.

Descendant chart for Richard Sargeson

Catherine Ann McMillan (1841-1879)

 Catherine was Isaac Sargeson’s first wife; she was buried in the MacMilllan pioneer cemetery where her age was given as 35 years old, implying a birth around 1844. In the 1871 census her religion is recorded as Church of Scotland, however at least two of her children were baptised as Catholic’s. Unfortunately, a record for Isaac and Catherine’s marriage has not yet been found. In addition, the FamilySearch tree suggests her birth date was 1841 and that her parents were Allan McMillan (1807-1844) and Mary Campbell (b 1812). So far, I’ve not been able to clarify Catherine’s link to the McMillan family buried in the cemetery.


While I have found some evidence, which suggests that Richard Sargeson can be linked into George and Ezat’s family in Cumwhitton, Cumberland, I would like to see what other information can be found. So far, I have been unable to find a copy of the Glengarry News for 1890 online to see if there was an obituary for Richard in it. Nor have I found any marriage records for him or his son Isaac. I would like to find out more about the family. If you have information that you would be willing to share with me do please contact me. 


Glengarry County Archives. : accessed November 2020. (Includes copies of Glengarry News and the Glengarrian.

Glengarry County. : accessed November 2020.

Glengarry County, Ontario Genealogy. : accessed November 2020.

Glengarry History Society. accessed November 2020.

Lancaster Township. : accessed November 2020.

Lonely Stones. : accessed November 2020.

Ontario, Canada, Deaths and Deaths Overseas (1869-1948) and census records. : accessed November 2020.

Edward Sergesson’s (1803-1859) military career and two of his great granddaughters

Edward was born about 1803 in Stranraer, Wigtonshire, Scotland. He enlisted as a private in the 19rh Regiment of Foot in Leicester, Leicestershire, England on 7 December 1820. Edward was a cordwainer (shoemaker) by trade and aged 17. He was described as five feet five and a half inches tall with a fair complexion, brown hair and brown eyes. Edward had voluntarily enlisted for the bounty of three pounds to serve King George IV. At the time the regiment was commanded by Lieutenant General Sir Hilgrove Turner who is known as the officer who escorted the Rosetta Stone from Egypt to England. (He has an entry in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.) After Edward swore the Oath of Fidelity, he received the sum of two shillings and six pence.

During his military service Edward remained in the 19th Regiment of Foot. Unfortunately, his service record does not provide much detail about where he went with the regiment, although it is likely that he served in the West Indies and Ireland. Edward married his wife Mary Hennessey (1802-1864) in 1837, in Ireland, where his son Arthur was born about 1839. Their next child Mary Ann was born in 1843 in Jersey.

Edward was promoted to the rank of Corporal on 29 November 1836; a rank which he retained until the end of his service on 13 April 1843. He was aged 39 years and 4 months on his discharge and described as being five feet six inches tall with dark brown hair, brown eyes and a swarthy complexion with no marks or scars on his face or body.

After his discharge Edward returned to his trade as a cordwainer and settled in Glasgow, Lanarkshire, Scotland. With his wife Mary they had three more children: Edward James, John and (Thomas) Francis. Edward died on 3 March 1859 in Glasgow and Mary on 8 June 1864 in the Glasgow Poorhouse.

Edward and Mary’s son, Edward James Sergison (1845-1876), also became a soldier with the 2nd Battalion of 12th Regiment of Foot (later the Suffolk Regiment). He enlisted on 7 June 1859 and became a drummer. During his 13 years-service Edward spent just under two years in the East Indies. Sadly, he was admitted to the Sussex Lunatic Asylum on 3 February 1876 and died there on 19 March 1876.  His son Charles Sargison (1874-1937) enlisted in the Suffolk Regiment on 13 November 1889 aged 14 years and 8 months. He was discharged on 12 July 1892, probably as a result of suffering from ametropia, having served in Egypt and India.

Charles married Jane Elizabeth Deacon (b 1871) on 29 April 1897 in New Ross, Wexford, Ireland. Charles was from Stillorgan, county Dublin and a farmer. They had four children: one son and three daughters. By 1911 Charles was a grocer and farmer and the family were living in Stillorgan where they had a shop and a second-class house with between 2 and 4 rooms and 4 windows in the front.

Stillorgan commercial postcard dated around 1905 (Unknown source, Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Two of Charles and Jane’s daughters became nurses. Both Isabella Florence Sargison (1898-1995) and Minnie Frances Sargison (1902-1954) trained in England and then returned to Ireland. Minnie was the first to undertake her training as nurse between 1923 and 1926. She trained at the Brownlow Hill Infirmary in Liverpool which was a large workhouse infirmary which was demolished in 1931.  By 1928 the Nursing Register shows that Minnie had returned to Ireland and was living in Grove View, Stillorgan.  

Brownlow Hill Infirmary, Liverpool (Unknown Author, Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

Despite probably being a member of the British Red Cross Society Voluntary Aid Detachment in WWI, Isabella did not start her nursing training until 1924.  Her Nursing Register entry reports that her previous occupation was as a typist and that she was a cyclist. She trained at the Walton Institution in Liverpool and was registered as a Queen’s Nurse in 1927.

Both Isabella and Minnie added midwifery training to their qualifications, with Isabella completing her district training at the St Patrick’s home in Dublin between 15 April and 15 October 1829. The home was for mothers and babies and was run on strict lines. Both the Superintendent’s and Inspector’s reports indicated that Isabella was a good nurse but “lacking in enthusiasm and initiative”. However, it was noted that her “patients like her”.

By 1931 the Nursing Register shows that both Isabella and Minnie were living at Gove View, Stillorgan. They remained there until about 1937 when their address is given as 16 Sallymount Gardens, Ranelagh. They moved there with their father Charles as this was the address recorded for him on his 1937 death certificate; his daughter Minnie was the informant. Isabella and Minnie did not marry; Minnie died in 1954 and Isabella in 1995.

What I’ve found most useful in developing this story is the range of military records and the UK and Ireland Nursing Registers which can be found on-line. I am interested though in finding out more about the family. If you have information that you would be willing to share with me do please contact me.  


Ireland. @ accessed November 2020.

London Gazette. : accessed November 2020.

Military records. : accessed November 2020.

Military records. : accessed November 2020.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. : accessed November 2020. UK and Ireland Nursing Registers. : accessed November 2020.

Tom Sarginson 1870-1951

While I was working on the records for the Sarginson Cumberland/Westmorland tree I came across Tom. He gave his occupation as a journalist in the 1911 census. Tom was one of four children born on 4 June 1870 in Penrith, Cumberland to Timothy Sarginson (1821-1895) and Mary Innes (1832-died after 1911). Timothy was a tailor and with Mary they had three other children:

  • William Simpson Sarginson (1860-1921) was also a tailor and married Jeanne Tirefort (died 1931) in France; he died in Belgium.
  • Elizabeth Sarginson (1863-1951), a dressmaker before her marriage to Edward Stephenson (1873-1943). She remained in Penrith until her death.
  • James Sarginson (1873-1945) worked as a joiner, married Elizabeth Ann Hill (1880-1960) and also lived in Penrith until his death.

Tom married Isabel Wood (1869-1926) in Penrith in 1889 and, at the time of the 1911 census, they recorded that they had had no children. Tom was still working as a newspaper editor for the Cumberland and Westmorland Herald in 1939 and living in Penrith. He was known by his pen name “SilverPpen” and edited the paper for 38 years from 1913 until his death in 1951. He wrote his “notes and comments” column, covering the news of the week for over 50 years and was known for his wit and humour.

Tom was considered a cultured journalist and was one of five from the provincial press invited to cover the coronation of King George VI in 1937. His descriptive piece on the ceremony in Westminster Abbey was considered to be one of the finest pieces of writing about this historic occasion. The Penrith Observer headlined his death on 20 April 1951 as “Silverpen passes” and noted that “journalism in the North of England” was poorer for his passing. Certainly, quite a different career path to those of his siblings and it seems that his legacy was the opportunities he gave to others to work in the newspaper industry, as remembered in a piece in the Cumberland and Westmorland Herald, written 50 years after his death.

Whilst I make every effort to ensure that the information, I include in my blog posts are accurate mistakes can creep in. Do please contact me if you have any further information.

Note: the Penrith map comes from:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Penrith, in Eden and Cumberland | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time. URL:   Date accessed: 27th September 2019

Richard Sargeson 1789-1890

I recently received a query about a Richard Sargeson who died in 1890 and is buried in the MacMillan Pioneer Cemetery, Lancaster Township, Ontario, Canada. Details from the cemetery give his birth date as 24 May 1789, died 16 April 1890 and that he was a “native of Cumberland England”.  The question was: did he fit into any of my trees?  Well ever one to accept a request I set about trying to find him. I have two trees which feature Sargeson/Sarginsons and other variant surnames: Sarginsons in Cumberland and Westmorland and Serginsons of Cumberland and Derbyshire.

An initial search of both trees didn’t find a Richard Sargeson baptised in 1789, or thereabouts, in Cumberland. However, I did find a Richard Sargison baptised 30 March 1806 in Cumwhitton, Cumberland. His father George (1776-1862) was listed as a blacksmith in a number of records and at least two of George’s sons: George (1796-1885) and Isaac (1810-1893), were also blacksmiths. George is included in the Sarginson Cumberland and Westmorland tree. However, he did not marry his wife Ezat Wright (1771-1843) until 1797 although their first son George (1796-1885) was baptised before their marriage. It seems unlikely though that their son Richard is the one in question, although the Richard in Canada variously recorded his occupation on Canadian censuses as blacksmith and/or farmer.

I then set about collecting as much information as I could about Richard. His cemetery records said that he was aged 101 years, 11 months and 8 days when he died so I wondered if his death had been featured in a local newspaper. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a digitised copy of The Glengarrian or Glengarry Times on the web, although it looks like the Ontario archives might have copies of these. I live in the UK so visiting the archive isn’t a practical proposition for me. Richard was also not consistent when he reported his age on a number of the documents, I found for him:

  • 1851 Canadian census his age was given as 58 suggesting a birth about 1793.
  • 1861 Canadian census his age was given as 71 suggesting a birth about 1790.
  • 1871 Canadian census his age was given as 77 suggesting a birth about 1794.
  • 1881 Canadian census his age was given as 858 suggesting a birth about 1796.
  • Memorial inscription his age was given as 101 years, 11 months and 8 days.

Using primarily census records I constructed the following family tree for him and it is interesting to note that the first names George and Isaac appear in his descendants and also that in some of the later generations the surname changes to Surgeson.

Horizontal Hourglass Chart for Richard Sargeson

So, if you are able to shed any light on this mystery do please contact me.

Possible places where the Sarginson surname originated

I have now got to the point with my research into the surname variant Sarginson where I have managed to place the majority of records that I’ve found so far into a number of family trees. I do still have some records which I haven’t been able to connect into these trees but the number has reduced somewhat.

The next significant activity is likely to be the release of the 1921 English census records as this will help me validate some of what I’ve done and potentially resolve some of the data I’ve been unable to place.

There is though one set of information which has proved trickier to resolve; that of very early parish records, some of which I have only so far been able to see as transcribed records rather than the originals. These early records do though give some information about possible places where the surname Sarginson, and its many variants, originated. There are six trees on my website, excluding the two landed gentry trees, which contain records from the 16th century: three of them are in Yorkshire and three in Lincolnshire.

The two landed gentry trees are the Sergisons of Cuckfield Park in Sussex and the Serjeantsons of Hanlith in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The earliest record I’ve found for Charles Sergison was a possible baptism in 1654 and his burial is recorded in 1732. With the Serjeantsons of Hanlith much research has been carried out into this family which I have not replicated. I’ve just included some information about a family who lived in Snaith as they were there at the same time as a different family grouping.

So, going back to the six trees with records from the 16th and 17th centuries they are located as follows:

North Riding of Yorkshire – William Sarginson from Aysgarth is the earliest ancestor who I’ve so far been able to connect into a tree (see Sarginsons from Aysgarth and beyond). He was baptised in 1640 and buried in 1719.

West Riding of Yorkshire – there are two trees which originated in this part of Yorkshire. The earliest records are to be found in Kirkby Malham where there are a number of Sargeantson/Serjantson records including Roger Serjantson who was probably born about 1595 (see Kirkby Malham, West Riding of Yorkshire families). There are also early 17th century parish records in Calverley which is near Leeds (see Sargesons of Calverley and USA). The earliest ancestor found so far here is Richard Sargison (1635-1718).

Lincolnshire – there are three clusters of records in this county around Crowle, Gainsborough and Hogsthorpe.

Crowle is part of the Isle of Axholme and borders onto the West Riding of Yorkshire. The earliest ancestors in this tree (see Sarjantsons from Crowle) who have been found so far are Richard Sarjantson and Henry Sarjantson probably both born in the mid-17th century.

Some of the earliest records in Gainsborough date from the mid-16th century and start with an interesting surname variant Sergeantsone (see Serginsons in Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire). This variant does seem to show how the surname was originally meant to be “son of the sergeant” where Sergeant was servant or serving man.

The Hogsthorpe parish records also date back to the 16th century, although there are some which I’ve been unable to place (see Sargissons of Hogsthorpe, Lincolnshire and USA). The earliest ones are for Thomas Sargesonne and his son William (1580-1626).

If you have any information on early Sarginson records which you would be willing to share with me then do please contact me.