The Jones Pages

Our Earliest Records

Until recently, the earliest record that we could be certain referred to our Jones history was that of the marriage of John Jones to Sarah Ellis in Overton on 31st October, 1785. Recently, however, more resources have become available on line, enabling us to push the history back by several generations.

The family remained within a very small area including what was then the detached part of the County of Flint, known as Maelor Saesneg.
It seems that the border between Wales and England was largely irrelevant at the time and "our" territory was mainly within the area shown on the map below.

Maelor map
Map showing the area involved in our early history

Our history now starts in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. Old customs, such as patronymic naming (as in Katheringe ferch Ric Lloyd) and official records in Welsh or Latin (e.g. John filius Thomas Jones) were dying out.

We can now start our tree with Roger Jones who married Weneffride Price in Oswestry on 25th August 1582. Roger was a corser, or dealer in horses. They had a son, Thomas, baptised in Oswestry on 19th November 1596. It was his baptismal record which enabled us to identify his father. He was shown as Thomas ap Roger Jons, corser.

Roger's son Thomas married Margarett Evance in Whittington on 24th February 1622.

Whittington Castle

St Mary's Church, Selattyn

Thomas and Margarett's son marked the beginning of a succession of indiviuals named John Jones. Baptised in Oswestry on 18th April 1628, our first John Jones married Katherine Williams in Selattyn on 1st October 1655.
Their son was John Jones (the second) and was baptised at Hordley, in Ellesmere parish on 23rd April 1661. He married Mary Parret in Ellesmere on 8th July 1681.

Our earlier research had taken us back to the person we can now describe as John Jones III, the son of John And Mary, baptised 18th February 1686 in Ellesmere. His wife was Elizabeth but we have found no record of her surname. Whitchurch parish register records "John Jones married Elizabeth of Ash, at Whitchurch 15 September 1711."

John III and Elizabeth had a son John Jones IV, baptised in Worthenbury on 21st June 1712. He became an employee ("servant" in those days) of John Poyser, a local landowner. On 8th January 1732 he married a fellow servant, Amy Thomas at Worthenbury church. The register shows "John Jones and Amy Thomas (both of them Servants to Mr Poyser, were married January the eighth, 1732".
Two and a half years later, Amy died. We have found no documentary evidence as to the cause of death, only "Amy, the wife of John Jones of Worthenbury, Labourer, was buried June the sixteenth 1734".

Ariel view of Worthenbury

John's second wife was Jane Jones whom he married in Overton on 31st May, 1736. Overton Parish Register records the baptism of four children of John and Jane. The fourth, Thomas, died in 1760, a month short of his sixteenth birthday. Their second child Sarah Jones is the next in our list of ancestors. Born in 1739, she had a child in 1760. She was not married and there is no evidence of who the father was. The record simply states:
"Augt 6: A Base Child of Sarah Jones Bapt"
This was John Jones (the Fifth).

overton cottages

John Jones V married Sarah Ellis in Overton on 31st October,1785.
John and Sarah's first child was yet another John Jones VI, baptised in Overton on 18th October, 1786. This new John, with his family, is a member of the first generation to be recorded in the Census. He married Elizabeth Roberts, from Dudleston, in 1816.
The 1841 census shows the family at Cae Dyah in Cloy Lane. Breaking with tradition, their eldest child was George Jones. Born in Overton on 23rd July 1819, he was baptised on 8th August. John (George's father) was a plasterer and when George moved to Liverpool in the 1840s, he also was working as a plasterer. Interestingly, George's cousin Stephen remained in Overton, working alongside his father (George's uncle Thomas) as a plasterer.

overton church
Overton Church

George Jones (our great great grandfather) was born in Overton in 1819. The 1841 census shows that he was still at home with the family but the next record of him, five years later, was of his marriage in Liverpool. His bride was Alice Ann Cruchley, born in London, the daughter of a printer and schoolmaster. For more about her family, see the Cruchley part of our History.
George and Alice were married at St Nicholas Church, Liverpool on 25th October,1846. The witnesses at the wedding were William and Mary Joyce. Mary was George's sister and she and William were married earlier the same year.

William was the son of a soldier in the Royal Irish Fusiliers, and was born in Cheriton, Kent (Shorncliffe) in 1815. The official record shows it as Guernsey, which was where the Regiment was based at the time. His father was born in Ross, Co. Galway, about 1785. (Enlisted 3rd June, 1804).
William became a Customs tide waiter (an official who boarded vessels arriving on the high tide and ensured that they proceeded to their appointed moorings, rather than at deserted quays away from the prying eyes of Customs officers.) This may well have had some bearing on George's change of occupation.

Marriage certificate George and
			Alice Ann
George and Alice Ann's marriage certificate

1861 census 4 Calmet Street, Everton
George, Alice Ann and family at Calmet Street in the 1861 census

George Jones and family appear on the 1861 census in Everton (extract above). George and Alice disappear from the records after this census. So, what happened to them?

The record of William John Jones's marriage in 1874 shows his father as "George Jones, H.M. Customs." With no indication that his father was no longer allive, we made extensive searches, endeavouring to find a record of him post-1861.

Eventually the rest of the family was located, one by one, in the 1871 census. Then, almost accidentally, I discovered the death of Alice Ann Jones at 4 Calmet Street, Everton, on 6th November, 1861. The cause of death is given as phthisis, generally meaning tuberculosis. She is described as "Widow of George Jones, an Officer in Customs."

It seems clear from this that George died between March and November, 1861.

Equipped with names and accurate birth dates, it was possible to find the children:

b 26th May, 1849, bapt St Peter's 1st January, 1850.
55 Lord Street, Liverpool, GEORGE JONES, Unm, 21, Draper's Clerk.

b 27 February 1851, bapt St Peter's 28 March 1851.
Vessel: Conqueror, WILLIAM JONES, Unm, Able Seaman, Liverpool.
"Off the N W Lightship, Liverpool Bay."

b 16 September 1853, bapt St Peter's 19 October 1853.
102 St Domingo Vale, Everton, SARAH JONES, Servt, Unm, 18, Domestic Servant.

The puzzling William H Jones - might he have been a son of George's sister Mary? Her husband died about 1857.
b about 1857
Indefatigable Training Ship, William Jones, 15, Apprentice, Liverpool.
(Off New Ferry, Mersey River)

It is sad to think that such a young couple should have died in what today we would consider the prime of life. George was just 42 or 43 and the widowed Alice died six days before her 46th birthday. According to the (incorrect) information on the death certificate she was even younger, at 40 years.


11 September 2020