John was born in 1838 (RoB Manchester 1838 Q2 V20 p461?) and christened on the 2nd September 1838 at Manchester Cathedral. He was the son of Thomas (HM052) and Jane (nee Hartley)(HM053).

We believe that John married Jane Rebecca Brace (GM268) at Manchester Cathedral in 1863 but the 1871 census and 1881 census records his wife as Rebecca A. They had at least six children:-

  • Arthur Brace (FM195) b.1864 (RoB Barton 1864 Q2 V.8c p.506), d.1886 (RoD Prestwich 1886 Q1 V.8d p.341 age 21);
  • Clara (FM277) b.1865 (RoB Barton 1865 Q4 V.8c p.464);
  • John Henry (FM213) b.c. 1869 in Scotland, d.1871 (RoD Manchester 1871 Q2 V.8d p.202 age 2);
  • Jane Elizabeth (FM210) b.1870 in Manchester (RoB Manchester 1870 Q3 V.8d p.271), d.1873 (RoD Manchester 1873 Q1 V.8d p253 age 2);
  • Florence (FM278) b.1872 (RoB Manchester 1872 Q3 V.8d p.309);
  • Minnie (EM267) b.1876 (RoB Prestwich 1876 Q1 V.8d p.443);
  • Beatrice (EM268) b.1878 (RoB Prestcott 1878 Q2 V.8b p.663);
  • Vivian Leigh (EM269) b.1882 (RoB Prestwich 1882 Q3 V.8d p.292);

In the 1871 Census we can see that John and Rebecca are living at 113 Queen’s Road in Manchester with Arthur, Clara, John Henry and Jane Elizabeth. John is recorded as a “traveller (House fittings)”. By this I assume that he was a travelling salesman. I wonder if that is what took him to Scotland in 1869 (see John Henry’s birth place).

A search of the 1881 Census on CDROM eventually revealed that in 1881, John, Rebecca and family were living at 27 Smedley Road in Manchester but the name recorded is Margnall! John is recorded as aged 42 and an accountant. Arthur was apprenticed to a machine fitter and the four other surviving children were all scholars.

In 1901 Rebecca was running a boarding house in Stretford. Clara, Florence (now married to a Mr Watt), Beatrice, Vivian and a new stepson – Harry Barnard – were living with her at the time of the 1901 Census. After searching the 1901 Census I found John living in Stuart Street, Manchester, with his daughter Minnie, her husband John H Boardman and their two children. John is shown as 62 years old and a widower! He was working as some kind of engineer on his “own account”. Unfortunately I have been unable to read what type of engineer.

I think John died in 1906 aged 67 (RoD Barton I. 1906 Q1 V.8c p.404) and Rebecca died in 1916 aged 75 (RoD Barton I. 1916 Q1 V.8c p.800).

Many thanks to Val Barr, John Bennett and Harold Boardman (decendant of Minnie) for their help in supplying much of this information.

[Last updated 26 Dec 2007]