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Bird family history

William & John Bird 1772/5 born Dembleby Lincs

William & John Bird 1772/5 born Dembleby Lincs
William and John Bird were born in Dembleby, a very small village, both married twice, they appear in the church Parish records

John Bird ( our line ) was married twice - firstly to Eleanor Worral - secondly to Elizabeth Bedford

New information from a family connection via the Waddinghams and Wortleys - Tanya , resident in Australia, who has recently visited the UK and carried out family research in the Sleaford area.
"The Birds came from mainly Lincolnshire and some of the family still live thereabouts. Church Parish records are the main source of info and I send my son on "patrols" he still lives in the area.Dembelby church has records (a few) anyone living near can carry on where I have stopped."

The village was featured on David Dimbleby's 'How we Built Britain'

"David was in the parish church in the almost eponymous village of Dembleby in Lincolnshire, where the Viking Dimblebys had first settled. The local historian had done some homework on his ancestors. According to parish records, in 1463 Thomas de Dembleby, the chaplain, had feloniously killed one Gilbert Sharpe. David wanted to know if “feloniously killed” was the same as “murdered”. It was."

Surname: Bird
Recorded as Bird, Byrd, Byrde and Bride, this famous surname is English. It derives from the pre 7th century word "bridde" meaning a bird, and as a surname was originally given as a nickname to one thought to bear a fancied resemblance to a bird. This may have been from bright dress, or bright eyed and active, or perhaps to some one with a beautiful singing voice. The surname was first recorded towards the end of the 12th century and other early recordings include: Ralph le Brid, a witness in the Fines Court of Essex in the year 1231, and Richard Bird, a witness in the Assize Court of Cambridgeshire in 1260.

Thomas Bird was born in Sleaford on 16.11.1807 - He was a Chelsea Pensioner

He enlisted in the army on 11.01.1827 in the 5th Infantry Fusiliers as a Private
He was 5ft 6½ ins tall with brown hair and grey eyes. He did 20 years 324 days service and was discharged as being unfit for foreign service on 11.01.1827 in Chatham
He served in Gilbralta and Malta.
He was Court Martialled twice and was described on discharge as being "very indifferent"
He married Mary Ann Newton aged 24 on 27.06.1850 he was 43 yrs of age and described himself as a labourer on the marriage certificate
His father in law John Newton was a Brewer by trade
He died on 13.09.1858 aged 50 years - two days before the birth of his son Thomas.
Cause of death " Suddenly from natural causes by the visitation of God"
He was described as a Brewers Labourer

From 1692 until 1955, when the Army Pensions Office moved away, (now located in Glasgow), all Army pensions were paid from the Royal Hospital Chelsea hence all Army pensioners were known as Chelsea Pensioners. There are two categories of Chelsea Pensioner: In-Pensioners, those who surrendered their Army Pension and were admitted as residents of the Royal Hospital Chelsea. Out-Pensioners, those who lived ‘Out ‘, at home and abroad.
In 1703, there were only 51 out-pensioners. By 1815 this figure had risen to 36,757.

Occupations of Some of our Ancestors

BIRD - Ag Labourers - Brewers Labourer - Publican - Butcher/Grocer - Cattle Dealer - Joiners & Carpenters - Licensed Victualler - Coal Miners - Confectioner - Stationer - Shopkeepers - Hoteliers - Market Gardener - Blacksmith - Plumber - Director of Companies

CAMPBELL - Farmer - Paper Stainers - Garage Proprietor - Admiralty Overseer - Dockyard Worker - Lighthouse Keeper

CHILDS - Tailors & Outfitters - Shopkeepers - Printers and Compositers - Domestic Servants - Brewery Clerk - Hoteliers - Company Director - Professor of Music - Chemist - Painter/Decorator - City Treasurer

CLARKE - Husbandsman - Butchers - Ag Labs - Domestic Servants

GILL - Coal miners - Ironmoulders - Domestic Servants

GOLDSMITH - Ag Labs - Grooms - Dairyman - Horsekeeper - Road Sweeper - Labourer - Shopkeepers

MAZASITISZ/POWELL - Glass Dealers - Gas Stoker - Shopkeeper - Hotelier

NEWTON - Brewer - Landscape Gardener

PEPPER - Shepherd - Ag Labs - Labourer - Domestic Servants

ROTHERMEL - Farmers - Butchers - Shopkeepers - Pharmacist - Tailoress - Clerks

SLOME - Medical Practitioners - Surgeons - Physicians

WARREN - Waggoner - Iron Moulders - Iron Puddlers - Grate Moulder - Nailors - Brickmakers - Domestic Servants

click download to view Bird History


RE: Harry Bird

Hi Janice
Harry is quite a way off my direct line. He is the nephew of husband of 2nd cousin. The second cousin is my ggggrandfather James Shingles who immigrated to Australia in 1849.
This is the path from Harry to my ggggrandfather James.
Harry Bird (1882 - 1950)- relationship to James Shingles: nephew of husband of 2nd cousin
Rebecca Pepper (1859 - )- Mother of Harry
Jane Green (1816 - )- Mother of Rebecca
Edwin Pepper (1853 - )- Son of Jane
Amelia Good (1852 - 1895)- Wife of Edwin
Elizabeth Payne Shingles (1821 - 1905)- Mother of Amelia
William Samuel Shingles (1783 - 1861)- Father of Elizabeth Payne
Samuel Shingles (1753 - 1788)- Father of William Samuel
John Shingles (1780 - 1850)- Son of Samuel
Joseph Shingles (1803 - 1851)- Son of John
James Shingles - Is the son of Joseph and my ggggrandfather

Regards Belinda Payne
Nowra, New South Wales, Australia

Lincolnshire country children 1880's

Lincolnshire country children 1880's
Boys wore skirts and pinafores because household economies meant that they should wear their older sister's clothes as they grew into them. Often they were distinguished by their shorter hair and caps as they grew older. The age when they graduated into trousers depended on whether and when the family possessed a pair that would fit them.

Descendant of John Bird born 1775 and his second wife Elizabeth Bedford

Your John Bird 1775/4 is the same as mine, but he shows his place of birth on the 1851 census as Shimpling in Suffolk! Sue

In fact it's shown as ShimpLAND which doesn't exist ! I think it's the enumerater's error as on the 1841 census he says he was born in the county of Lincolnshire.
Yes, I think it is all the same family !
There were 2 Johns and 2 Elizabeths different generations both Elizabeths were second marriages! Janice

1841 census West St., New Sleaford John aged 66 Ag. Lab (says he was born in the county of Lincolnshire)
2nd wife Elizabeth Bedford aged 45 born Sutterton
Joseph aged 13 died 1858 Sarah aged 9 died 1855
Hannah aged 11
Esther aged 6
Charlotte aged 3

John married Elizabeth 3rd April 1827 ( poss pregs with Joseph) - first wife Eleanor
1804 Elizabeth
1807 Thomas " MY LINE" - died 1858
1810 John - later to become a Publican * married Nancy then Elizabeth
1814 Eleanor Tose
1816 William
1819 James - died 1832 14yrs
1821 Easter JOHN Snr FATHERED 12 CHILDREN !!

*John Bird b 1810 married Elizabeth Stennett 12.11 1850 - 2nd wife
First wife Nancy died 18.07.1850 aged 37 - (on '41 Census with baby Eliza 1yr)
Grocer and Publican
1851 with Elizabeth and Eliza aged 10yrs
1861 Census with James aged 9yrs later to become a cattle dealer

1851 census Reform Place, New Sleaford John aged 76 Ag. Lab.
Elizabeth aged 55
* William aged 34 (son) From first marriage to Eleanor
Joseph aged 24 (died June 1858)
Charlotte aged 12

1851 census West St, New Sleaford aged 15 Esther - dom. Servant

1861 census Westgate, New Sleaford - no John - Died 25 Sept 1859 aged 85
Elizabeth now head, aged 67
Esther aged 25 - dressmaker
1871 census West St. Fen Poor Row, New Sleaford
Elizabeth 78
Esther 35 - single - dressmaker

1881 census 13 Reform Place, New Sleaford
Elizabeth aged 87 living with Esther and her husband
Frederick BRIDGES and 4 children i.e.
Elizabeth aged 7 Frederick aged 5
Esther aged 3 Hannah aged 2

1891 census 72 Westgate, Sleaford - no Elizabeth - died 25.8.1890 97yrs
Frederick BRIDGES aged 54 brewer
Esther aged 54
Frederick aged 15 errand boy
Hannah aged 12
Also a lodger 'dressmaker' assume Esther kept her hand in!

1901 census 87 Westgate, New Sleaford
Frederick BRIDGES aged 66 market gardener
Esther aged 65
Fred aged 25 market gardener
Hannah aged 22

*Perhaps this William is also the one on the 1861 census aged 43, farming 10 acres of land at Swineshead, with wife Sarah and two children? Right age again. I think you're right !

There's a John Bird christened 29 Nov 1750 (Parents Thomas and Mary Bruce) and married to Susan Shelly 28 Sept 1774 in Shimpling who just might be John senior's parents. (Found on Family Search I.G.I.) Sue
I can't seem to find this - my cousins were convinced that our Birds originated from the Sleaford area through and through, first record Matthew and Ann married 1602. How can we find the father of John (1774)? I've found the Sleaford 'look up' service quite good - shall I try them again??

Esther I'm safer with so I'll give you details of her descendency, so you can tie her in with your records.

Esther Bird born 1835 Sleaford, Lincs to John and Elizabeth Bird (2nd wife)
Married Frederick Bridges 29.10.1872 at Parish Church of New Sleaford (assume St. Deny's). (he signed his mark, she could sign her own name)
Esther Bridges born 1877 Sleaford
Married John Thomas COOPER 26.12.1900 at Parish Church of New Sleaford
(both signed themselves)
Annie Cooper born 1.2.1902 at 23 West Banks, New Sleaford
Married Arthur Cooling 1920
Arthur Ernest Cooling born 18.10.1924 Sleaford, - my dad, (still living)
Married Rose Mary Dunne 9.8.1947 Nelson, Lancashire


It seems that my line (Thomas) is from John's first liaison with Eleanor and your line (Esther) thru' 2nd marriage with Elizabeth, John 1774/5 is common to us both ! Janice


We are now in contact with the Cooper line ( see extended family page) Thanks to Jean :

Frederick born 1901
Daughter Annie Cooper b 1902 m Arthur COOLING the couple had 7 children
John Cooper born1904
William born 1905
Doris Cooper born 1906-married Arthur S. Hodgskins 1925
Evalyn Cooper born 1909
Winifred Cooper (Peg) born 1911 died 1965
Lillian born 1910
Charles born 1913
Son Alfred Cooper 1915 - 1979 m Florence Bullock 1910 - 1997

1911 Census 17 West Banks Sleaford

COOPER, John Thomas Head Married M 38 1873 Labourer General Sleaford
COOPER, Esther Wife Married10 years F 33 1878 Sleaford
COOPER, Fred Son M 10 1901 School Sleaford
COOPER, Annie Daughter F 9 1902 School Sleaford
COOPER, John Son M 7 1904 School Sleaford
COOPER, William Son M 6 1905 School Sleaford
COOPER, Doris Daughter F 4 1907 School Sleaford
COOPER, Evelyn Esther Daughter F 2 1909 Sleaford
COOPER, Lilian daughter F1 1910 Sleaford

1911 Census

Albert Cooling 13
Sidney Cooling 11
Arthur Cooling 9
Amos Cooling 6

Were all inmates in the Sleaford Union Workhouse listed together with a Thomas BIRD widower aged 68, this Thomas was the son of Harriet & Christopher Bird and was in the workhouse at the age of 7 on the 1851 Census

We have a further mystery Harriet Bird (widow)
1851 living in the Union Workhouse New Sleaford
William 12 Mary 11 Thomas 7 George 6 Sarah 2
Who was her husband ? Also had a son Robert christened 1851 all BIRDS
See separate section

Perhaps the rumours that there were pubs/brewers in the family also came from your Frederick Bridges as well??

I've been visiting Sleaford for as long as I can remember, always wanted to live there - the sun always shone!!! I still have an elderly aunt living just outside Sleaford, and she provided me with some photos recently of granddad, but there are none of gran. Dad's photos all went astray in his last house move. (Typical) Sue


John Bird b 1774 was John Bird's b 1810 father? His first wife was Eleanor
I've honed in on the John Bird Publican aged 61 (b 1810) on the 1871 Census as I have been told by elderly uncles that my grandfather Harry Bird's family ran pubs and were connected to the Brewery trade. I've traced back and found that this particular John Bird was married to Nancy in 1841 with baby Eliza, Nancy died in the summer of 1850 and in November 1850 he had re married Elizabeth Stennett. In 1861 they were living in North Street with Eliza aged 10 yrs. In 1861 he was a butcher, 1851 a cattle dealer, 1841 a labourer. I am told that butchers used to sell beer so this may be the connection. Janice


Brewing and Malting

Brewing and Malting in Sleaford

The processing of barley for beer has always been an important industry in Lincolnshire and by 1856 there were 163 maltsters in the county, mostly located in the towns and in several villages in Kesteven and the northern and western parts of Lindsey, with very few on the Wolds or in the fens. In the 1750s breweries were often small undertakings, but during the 19th and early 20th centuries some firms grew larger and absorbed or displaced their competitors. In 1856 there were 166 brewers in Lincolnshire, nearly half of whom were also malsters, and they were located in all the main towns as well as in several villages. As firms grew larger they tended to concentrate on either brewing or malting and by 1913 there were only six firms still involved in both activities. Apart from these six, there were only 32 brewers and 26 maltsters in the county in 1913. The Lincolnshire brewers and maltsters faced competition not only from within the county but from firms outside. Major national firms such as Bass of Burton on Trent took advantage of the new railway network and built their own maltings beside railway lines in the barley growing areas of Lincolnshire. Truswells of Sheffield built some at Barnetby, there were others at Grantham, and in 1899-1905 Bass built a vast complex in Sleaford which closed in 1960 but still stands next to the line forty years later, a true monument of the industrial period. Since the 1960s Melbourne's brewery in Stamford has become a museum but Bateman's of Wainfleet (founded 1874) still meets the need for liquid refreshment in many parts of Lincolnshire. The rise of the temperance movement in the late 19th century led to the growth of mineral water manufacturers in Lincolnshire, as elsewhere, producing a variety of non-alcoholic drinks. Buttheir local industry has also declined and they have been replaced by national and international firms such as Coca Cola.

Our Direct Line

Thomas and Rebecca in Westminster
Esher Esher Street - Westminster London
The Bird family lived here for
25 years Thora was born here
Esher2 Esher Street 1900
(Now demolished)
VB The old
Vauxhall Bridge 1902
The current bridge was designed by Sir Alexander Binnie, with modifications by Maurice Fitzmaurice, to replace a previous cast-iron structure.

It was completed in 1906, and opened on the May 26 by the Prince of Wales, and was the first bridge to carry trams across the Thames. It measures 80ft wide by 809ft long, has five steel arches mounted on granite piers, and its most striking feature is a series of bronze female figures on the bridge abutments, both upstream and downstream, commemorating the arts and sciences.

Harry would have seen the construction going on as his shop was very nearby

Trading as a CONFECTIONER at 215 Vauxhaill Bridge Road and a Stationer at 133 Praed Street. Life in central London was pretty grim as the First World War had started. He was now calling himself 'William Wallace' on his children's birth certificates. ( see flow charts )
A lot for a man of humble beginnigs aged only 33 years, two women and four children to support........

Confectioners shop 1915

Confectioners shop 1915

William Bird Stationers & Newsagent 1915

William Bird Stationers & Newsagent 1915
See stories of the family in WW1 click to view

Our grandparents were born in Sleaford

Our grandparents were born in Sleaford

Sleaford District

Created 1st July 1837.

Sub-districts : Aswarby; Billinghay; Heckington; Leadenham; Sleaford

GRO volumes : XIV (1837-51); 7a (1852-1930).

Anwick, Asgarby, Ashby de la Launde, Aswarby, Aunsby, Byard's Leap, Billinghay, Blankney, Bloxholm, Brauncewell, Burton Penwardine, Cranwell, Culverthorpe, Dembleby, Digby, Dogdyke (from 1895), Dorrington, Evedon, Ewerby, Great Hale, Haverholme Priory, Heckington, Helpringham, Holdingham, Howell, Kelby, Kirkby Green, Kirkby la Thorpe, Leadenham, Leasingham, Little Hale, Martin, New Sleaford, Newton, North Kyme, North Rauceby, Old Sleaford, Osbournby, Quarrington, Rowston, Roxholm, Ruskington, Scopwick, Scott Willoughby, Scredington, Silk Willoughby, South Kyme, South Rauceby, Spanby, Swarby, Swaton, Temple Bruer, Temple High Grange, Thorpe Tilney, Threckingham, Timberland, Walcot, Welbourn, Wellingore, Wilsford.

Registers now divided between Lincolnshire district.

Population in 1851

Population in 1851