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Posted by LEP1950 on 21st June 2017  

Hi Jon,

Don't know whether this is your line as I don't have much time at all this week to do much research, but I found an interesting baptism of a DANIEL FORSHAW at St Mary's Church, Rufford on 22 April 1792. He was the son of ROBERT and ALICE FORSHAW. He probably went on to marry Margery Wignall(daughter of JOHN WIGNALL) on July 17th 1810. I found the baptisms of two children - a son Robert in 1811 and a daughter called Joyce (Interesting!!) in 1818 in Rufford. Couldn't find any other children to date. No Margaret Forshaw or an illegitimate Margaret Wignall (well, there was one actually, but in 1822 and elsewhere). Anyway, it might be worth trying to trace these people.
It will probably be the weekend before I have time to go deeper into this.


Posted by Elizabeth Prior on 21st June 2017  

I've been in direct contact with Albert about Ann Grundy. The Wigan Ann is not the right one. Having had a dig around on Lan-OPC and Lancashire BMD the most likely candidate is the Ann Grundy who died age 83 in Bury in the September quarter of 1932.

Posted by Margie on 21st June 2017  

To Albert /Julie.

From the records Wigan Cemetery (Lower Ince)

Grundy Nathan 76 yrs 12 Alfred St. Swinley 19-Apr 1922 A 351 Non Con
Grundy Ann 78 Yrs Sterling St 10-Jan 1927 A 351 Non Con
Rigby Samuel 60 59 Darlington Street East 26-Dec 1904 A 351 Non Con

Is this the Ann you are looking for,


Posted by Julie A on 19th June 2017  

For Albert Smith
Regarding your query about Ann Grundy's death in Wigan in 1927, have you seen a copy of the death certificate? If not, it might be worth ordering one from:
(This is the official government website and I believe the cheapest way to order certificates - although they have recently had a trial to use cheaper PDFs, which may or may not return).
If you are lucky, the information on the certificate might state who Ann was a 'wife' or 'widow' of, and you might also recognise the informant of the death as a family member of Ann's that you know of. Using the above link, I searched and could find just one statutory registration for an Ann Grundy who died in Jan - Mar 1927.

On another website, I found a Probate entry for an Ann Grundy who died in Jan 1927, which may, or may not be the same Ann (always check):
Address 8 Stirling-street, Wigan, widow, died 6 Jan 1927. Probate to Nathan Rigby, painter and decorator.

If 'Nathan Rigby' rings a bell, you may well have found your Ann. If not, it's worth checking to see if he was related to your Ann in some way.

Regarding info on Joseph Rigby, have you seen the marriage certificate? If not, again it could be worth ordering one as they usually include the name of the father of the groom (& bride), the occupation, and, if lucky, a relative as a witness.

Hope this helps, Julie

Posted by Julie A on 19th June 2017  

Linda, thank you so much for your time and information - very much valued. I hope you've had a good time with your grandchildren.

You certainly seem to know the Corless family background very well/research very quickly! Yes, William and Elizabeth did spend time in the Scholes area, close to where he would have lived as a child, if he was Martha's son (as well as living in Longshoot). I know little about the geography of the Wigan area, so it's really helpful to have these links between areas confirmed.

As you said, both William & Elizabeth were living at Corporation Street, Wigan at the time of their marriage in Apr 1877. The witnesses were Elizabeth's sister, Alice, and her husband Thomas Orme, who were also living in Wigan (Queen St), when their daughter, Elizabeth Agnes was born in January 1877. I wonder if Alice's being there was what brought Elizabeth to Wigan in the first place, where she then met William.

From Wigan, William and Elizabeth seem to have moved back to Ormskirk, to Elizabeth's family, as their daughter, Martha Alice, was born there just over a week after the wedding.Then, back to Wigan in 1878, and to Ormskirk again Census 1881 ('Cawles'with Elizabeth's family).

Sometime between 1884 & 1887 they returned to Wigan, where they seem to have stayed until between Apr 1892 (death of daughter Mary Alice/Lily, Scholes Bridge) & Dec 1892 (birth of Henry in Burnley). After that, they settled in the Burnley area.

I must have a look for Beatrice's second baptism!

Catherine Corless/Birchall, had a Catholic burial c1854. When Martha Corless died in 1889, her burial was C of E, and I imagine that after Catherine's death, the family (if raised as Catholics) gradually moved away from Catholicism, with none of William's children being baptised as Catholics.

The 2 oldest (and short lived) daughters of Elizabeth and William were named Martha Alice - another possible link to Martha Corless (with 'Alice' for Elizabeth's sister. Things are very much pointing towards Martha as William's mother, which is great, as I have tree traced for Martha back through Robert Corless & Alice Brighouse/Brighurst to early C18 Wigan!

Your thought that John Hitchen could have been William's father is very interesting. I had had the same idea, with them both being in the same household C1861, but later revised that when I saw how young John was and that John had a different status to Martha, William and Ellen, 'Boarder' as opposed to 'Lodger' (or vice versa). John H also married soon after the 1861 Census. I then wondered if there might be some other blood relationship between Martha Corless & the Hitchens (or McSurlys). John Hitchen as William's father would certainly fit with 'John' as his father. Confirming that might be tricky, though.

Your replies have really helped me to pull ideas together - thanks again. Julie

Posted by LP1950 on 19th June 2017  

I'll get back to you in a couple of days. Have to help out with one of the grandchildren at the moment.


Posted by LEP1950 on 19th June 2017  

When William Corless married, he may have said that his father's name was "John", which was probably true, as I think he was probably the son of John Hitchen, although I don't think siser Ellen shared the same father. From that, it was presumed by the registrar that the father's name was John CORLESS. Or William himself added the name Corless to hide his illegitimacy. It happened. I also followed a couple of William Corlesses born around the same time, but they didn't fit. It's a pity that William and Elizabeth were both living in Corporation Street at the time of the marriage and can't be traced through the address. But they were in Scholes (which leads up to Whelley) in 1891. The baptism of Albert, b. 1887, died 1888, took place at St Catherine's and was not a RC baptism. Most of the others were christened at All Saints, Wigan and the last ones in Burnley. Interestingly, Beatrice seems to have been christened twice!! At the age of "4" and at the age of 15. They were often christend with two names, but registered only with one and not necessarily the first one of the names at baptism. Makes it all a bit difficult. Anyway, good luck! I'll look again tomorrow as I have my grandchild today.


Posted by Julie A on 19th June 2017  

Eileen, many thanks for that link and news of Wigan papers being online. I've already had a look and found a few things (on Find My Past).

Posted by Julie A on 19th June 2017  

Hello Linda

Many thanks for the reply and all the information - it's very much appreciated. Yes, that William was my Great grandfather (husband of Elizabeth & father of John - and the other children). He certainly changed name and age! I have traced him from his 1877 marriage until his death, but I haven't got a confirmed birth for him. I haven't been able to find a statutory birth (or a baptism) for him with the details he gave at his marriage/on censuses, i.e. (from marriage) born c1856 in Wigan, father John Corless, miner. I suspect (and rather hope as I have the tree traced backwards from her) that Martha Corless was his mother and father's name incorrect (knowingly by William or not, to hide his birth out of wedlock).

I've now traced all William Corlesses b Wigan c1850 - 1860 on the censuses 1861 onwards, and the only one that seems to fit (and to have otherwise have disappeared) is Martha's son.That's still speculation at the moment, though! I wonder if anyone else is claiming William, son of Martha, as their ancestor, which rule out him being mine? (No tree including him on Ancestry or elsewhere that I can see).

Martha's mother seems to have been RC - first child (& only baptism of Catherine Chandler and Robert Corless's children I've found) was baptised as RC (William b c 1819), and I just found out that Catherine had an RC burial.

I'm excitedly planning a visit to Wigan Archives in the next few months (easy, as I'm in Yorkshire). Hopefully, I'll find the baptisms of Martha and another 3+ siblings. (When Robert was transported c 1830, the records show he and Catherine had 5 living children at that date).
Thanks again, Julie

Posted by JBrown86 on 19th June 2017  

The 1841 Census shows only 5 Daniel Forshaws - even allowing for 'Exact and Similar' on both Name and Surname.
They live in Tarleton, North Meols, Manchester, Hesketh with Becconstall, and Stepney-Middlesex. Only one (Tarleton) could possible be old enough to be Margaret Forshaw's father.

Posted by JBrown86 on 19th June 2017  

Hi Linda,

hope you are well.

I'm stuck in Wigan! though not literally - but my family lines of MARROW and FORSHAW. You may remember that my ancestor Wm Edmondson Hartington married an Elizabeth Marrow - Wm and Eliz. are my 4x great- grands.
I'm chasing her parentage and have done well but still missing a little. Probably due to the gaps that may exist from this being seemingly a Catholic family.

Elizabeth's parents are Peter Marrow and Margaret nee FORSHAW. This maiden name is shown on BMD records for Elizabeth and her younger sister Joyce.
The family in 1841: http://search.ancestry.com.au/cgi-bin/sse.dll?db=uki1841&indiv=try&h=16407053&requr=2533575444430848&ur=0&lang=en-AU
where entries for search seem to be individual, tho in the image we can see them all together.

The family in 1851 (typo in surname made them awfully hard to find): http://search.ancestry.com.au/cgi-bin/sse.dll?db=uki1851&indiv=try&h=13177562&requr=2533575444430848&ur=0&lang=en-AU

Peter dies in 1854 (not registered on Lancs OPC), and Margaret remarries in 1857:

Marriage: 6 Jul 1857 St Thomas, Wigan, Lancashire, England
John Myers - 49, Labourer, Widower, Adelaide Street
Margaret Marrow - (X), 47, Widow, Adelaide Street
Groom's Father: Lawrence Myers, deceased
Bride's Father: Daniel Forshaw, Deceased
Witness: Ralph Peters, (X); Ellen Taylor, (X)
Married by Banns by: Jas. Cronshaw Incumbent
Register: Marriages 1852 - 1861, Page 86, Entry 172
Source: Original register at Wigan Archives

She dies under the name Myers. Elizabeth marries in 1858 and Peter the father is recorded as deceased at that time.

It's Margaret's father I'm having trouble pinning down, tho originally it was exciting to see a less common name (Daniel) as I thought this might make my searches easier.
I've reopened this "case" after a while and will be searching again myself to see if my older eyes find something I couldn't the last I looked. It seems from the FORSHAW-MYERS marriage that Daniel was already deceased come 1857 - how much previous to this date his death occurred I'm not sure.

For the record I'm unsure if the FORSHAW family was/is Catholic here; it would seem that the Marrows definitely were, and I have other questions about them if you wouldn't mind helping me with it at a later time. It's all Wigan-based so this is the place I thought to come!


PS Joyce Marrow marries a GUNNING and dies in 1908. Peter MARROW and Margaret had a third daughter Ann who lived for less than one year - dying in 1842.
Margaret FORSHAW/MARROW/MYERS daughter of Daniel FORSHAW seems to have been born in Rufford anywhere from 1805-1811, depending which Census or marriage record you view.

Posted by LEP1950 on 18th June 2017  

Hello Julie,

I've been browsing around for the last couple of hours and have found out what happened to William Corless and Elizabeth Sumner. They had lots of children who mostly died in infancy. To date I only have the survivors Beatrice, John William and Henry. If these names ring a bell, let me know and I'll tell you all I found out, but it's after midnight where I am and I don't want to go into detail if it turns out to be the wrong family. There was a lot of movement, wrong ages and strange surname spellings. It's no wonder you had difficulty.


Posted by Julie A on 18th June 2017  

Hello. I'm new to this site, so I'm hoping I'm posting in the right place.
I'm tracing the line of William Corless b c 1856, Wigan. His mother was probably Martha Corless born c1825 - 1830 in Wigan, who spent much of her recorded life in Whelley/Scholes. She was the daughter of Catherine Chandler (later Birchall)and Robert Corless. On 2 censuses, Martha was living in or near Hitchen/McSurly households:

1861: Martha and children were 'Lodgers' with Peter and Alice McSurley who had a 'Boarder', John Hitchen.
1881: Martha and daughter (Ellen) and grand daughter (Elizabeth) were living next to Charles Hitchen (brother of John).

I'm trying to find out if William, son, of Martha, was my great-grandfather, or not. I have no trace of him beyond 1871, but no evidence either to confirm he married Elizabeth Sumner in 1877. I also wonder if Martha Corless and family were related to the Hitchens/McSurlys.
Does anyone know answers to the above, or what happened to Martha's William Corless after 1871 Census? Any information about this or any info about the Chandler/Corless line (Martha had several siblings I've not been able to trace yet - next step Wigan Archives RC records)would be very welcome. Thank you in advance for any replies. Julie

Posted by Eileen on 17th June 2017  

The British Newspaper Archive has finally added some coverage for Wigan. https://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk/titles/wigan-observer-and-district-advertiser

Posted by Albert Smith on 4th June 2017  asmith68@bell.net 

I believe that ANN GRUNDY who died during the period Jan-Mar 1927 in Wigan may be my great-grandmother.

My great-grandmother was born Ann Bethell in Salford (Manchester?) about December 1849. She married Henry Smith in Accrington (Haslingden) about 1867. In the 1901 census her mother was listed living with them in Bolton and her name was written as Ellen Birthell(?) born in Wigan.

Henry Smith and Ann Bethell had seven children:
Mary Ellen b.1868, married Joseph Henry Selkirk.
Agnes b.1870, married Henry Sanderson.
Betsy Jane b.1876, married a man with the surname Clarke.
William b.1878, married Mary Elizabeth Madows.
Henry b.1880. I have no record of a marriage.
Eliza b.1882. I have no record of a marriage but she did have a daughter Lizzie.
Albert (my grandfather) b.1891, married Florence Smith daughter of James Smith and Mary Piercy (my other great-grandparents). James Smith was a policeman in Bolton.

Henry Smith died in 1908. Ann (Bethell) Smith married Joseph Grundy about August 1913 in Barton upon Irwell. I have no other information about Joseph, such as date and place of his birth and death, nor any of his family members.

Ann Smith and her daughter Eliza travelled to Canada in 1910. Ann (Smith) Grundy travelled to Canada in 1920. Her Son William emigrated to Canada in 1910, and her son Albert (my grandfather) and his family emigrated to Canada in 1920.

I would like to somehow confirm whether or not that Ann Grundy who died in Wigan in 1927 is my great-grandmother born Ann Bethell.

Any information about any of the other persons listed here would truly be appreciated.

Albert Raymond Smith
133 Lea Crescent
Welland, Ontario L3C 7J7
Email: asmith68@bell.net
Phone: 1-950-788-4097
Fax: 1-360-234-5391

Posted by LEP1950 on 19th May 2017  

Jon, I think it's quite possible. From my own family I have the bride's father in one case listed as "deceased" (he was), but at the marriage of her sister two years later he is listed as "father" with a profession. So things like this were not so unusual.

Posted by JBrown86 on 19th May 2017  

just a quick yes or no for anyone who might know:
is it possible that burial records (on Lancs OPC) for a woman whose husband died before her might say "Wife of" instead of "widow" or "widow of", as if the husband were still alive?

Thanks in advance


Posted by Elizabeth Prior on 18th May 2017  

It must be 'my' William in 1761 and I am inclined to agree that the Hoghton William is probably the father of Isabella. Thank you for the information.

Posted by LEP1950 on 16th May 2017  

For Elizabeth:
In the Register of Duties for Apprentices' Indentures 1710-1811, a Will. Worsick, joiner of Woolton le dale (sic) made a payment for his apprentice Richard Wilson on 23 April, 1761. Your William? It would seem so.
Interesting is also the payment for a James Unsworth on June 12, 1731 by Will. Worsecke, carpenter of Hoghton. Today Brindle and Hoghton are the same ward. Was this Isabella's William? Or perhaps your William's line? He had the same profession anyway.


Posted by margie on 16th May 2017  

For Elizabeth & Lynda,
Will get back to you later in the week with my Thomas Bonney, but late last night I came across these might help I don't know.

1698 Wm son of Henry Worswick de Walton
1699 Roger son of above
1702 Ellen d of Henry Worswick
1704 Thomas s of Henry Worswick poor.

1704 Ann d of Wm Worswick poor

These are all baptisms from the registers of the Parish Church Brindle.