Study Update

April 2024 Update

Well it’s been another quiet month blog wise with just one post “Spring a busy time for the Shepherd“, something that will definitely be different in May as a number of blog posts are planned on the subject of “Post”.

However, behind the scenes as usual it’s a different story! Baptisms are now in the database from 1800, marriages from 1790 these go through to 6th June 1841 the date of the 1841 census. These don’t cover all in the database though as some people were not from St. Mary Bourne so work is ongoing to find the baptisms & marriages for people that have moved to the village in this time period. I have already been able to narrow down some dates a couple of families moved to the village and these have been recorded with a custom fact “Moved to SMB”.

Another custom fact is “Tithe Plot”, and April has seen additional Tithe information added. This is proving a difficult task and I have spent hours cursing the 1841 Census Enumerator who seems to have not always recorded in his enumeration books the properties in order. A great example is finding The Plough Inn recorded at Swampton rather than immediately before The Vicarage where it should be. It also appears that he may not have recorded all properties either as at present I have found at least one on the High Street that seems to have no one living there. The Tithe Map was created in April 1840 so just over a year before the 1841 Census, which does mean that for many people their location is likely to be the same in both records. In theory it should have be easy to match the census to the tithe but because of issues with how the census enumerator has recorded the entries in his enumerator books this is not proving so. Currently, entries from the Tithe for the properties that existed in 1841 between the Old Plough and what is now the old Coronation Arms have been added to the database. The other side of the High Street and also Church Street have been worked out but as yet not added to the database.

When recording the information about a property I am adding extra information in the notes. For instance below is the information recorded for the place “The Old Plough, High Street, St. Mary Bourne, Hampshire, England“.

The information recorded for The Old Plough currently tells us the plot number on the Tithe Map of 1840, the former name “The Plough Inn”, who owned and occupied the property in 1840, and the size of the plot. It also tells us the ordnance survey reference number that can be found on the OS 25 inch maps from when they were first added in 1873 from the Ordnance Survey Reference books which included a description and any updates on acreage that can be learnt from newer maps. We can see from the above entry that the plot for 724 increased slightly. OS reference numbers are not necessarily individual plot numbers like the tithes, plot 724 actually covers not just the Plough but the Vicarage too. Finally, I’ve added a status that in this case links to the Historic England website for the property.

Properties that no longer exist may be recorded as this example “Tithe Plot 66, High Street, St. Mary Bourne, Hampshire, England”. The 1840 tithe map clearly shows a property in Plot 66 which at the time was occupied by William Piper one of my 4 x Great Grandfather’s. However, by 1873 there is no cottage at this location as the land is part of OS Ref: 711 it is just stated as being pasture. Today we can see from the 2024 status that this plot is where the War Memorial is located.

As much as possible I am trying to add places to people with the current property name if it still exists, this will not always be possible as today some building that were once multiple dwellings are now single dwellings. Because of this it will be necessary to add extra information to the place descriptions as and when required to link places.

These place details will be shared online soon, as I am planning to share the data online hopefully starting sometime in May. The data will be then be updated monthly, currently started testing on this as it will also be an online repository for images, documents and more plus will have the people. Note it is not a family tree, currently Rootsmagic tells me there are 520 separate trees within the database. Overtime this will cut down as I find I am able to link more people together but it will take time, there may even be the odd duplicate that I have yet to identify.

Lastly, April has also been a month of working on enhancing and colourising old images so that as more is learnt about the parish we can see it not just in dull old sepia with scratches and blotches but more like a painting. My favourite of the month has to be the one I have shared below, it really brings to life what was happening in the Vicarage Garden (c. 1900-1910). You’ll be able to see more next month as we follow the Post Office from it’s first known location in Swampton up the High Street to where it is today.

Maypole Dance in Vicarage Garden
Original image from Jeanette Davies, St Mary Bourne History Facebook Group
Colourised version by Julie Muirhead

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