Sunday, August 15, 2010

Trevithick musings

I've written several times on William Trevithick - the father of Thomas who came to Australia ( 
I have little information on William:
William TREVITHICK (also written TREVIDICK) was born about 1806 according to his age at death, as a bachelor married the widower Ann Watkins PENGILLY nee ALLEN in Kenwyn in 1834. They had two children, Thomas (1835-1913) and Elizabeth (1837-1842). William died in 1838 in Kenwyn, Cornwall (aged 32). If his age at death is correct he was ten years her junior. He was a labourer according to his sons baptismal transcript.

But who were his parents? And is the age wrong? 
There don't seem to have been any other Trevithick's in the Kenwyn/Truro/St Clements area - this wasn't an area the Trevithick family were actually from. However, a 'Maryann Trevethick' was the informant, not living with William, but on Pauls Row at St Clements - unfortunately one of the many flaws in English civil certificates is that the relationship is not stated.
Based on these details I am looking for a William Trevithick born abt 1806, probably in Cornwall. The name Thomas may be important to him, as he named his son Thomas. William probably couldn't name his first son after himself, as his wife Ann PENGILLY nee ALLEN had a son William PENGILLY from her previous marriage.

I have been sent a number of family trees from Trevithick descendants in the past few years, in fact I've been sent copies of the same tree from several people. An examples are posted here. The tree has been sent to me from multiple people including Dennis Trevihick and Lyn Crawford. It is not clear where this tree came from, but clearly many copies exist.

Along with the above tree, many on-line trees state that William Trevithick who married Ann PENGILLY nee ALLEN (a widower) was William Trevithick, christened 2 Apr 1797 at Stithians. Given that William's death certificate predicts that he was born abt 1806, what certainty can be placed on William being the one christened in 1797 at Stithians? One point that has to be made is that IGI shows no other William TREVITHICK (or spelling variation) christened at the time (1796-1810), though this could be due to lost on non-transcribed records (including non-conformists). Stithians (also known at St Stithians or St Stythians) is about 9 miles from Truro/Kenwyn where William died. Perhaps if we could discount another fate for William it would strengthen the case that he married Ann PENGILLY/ALLEN.

 Here is the info available from the baptism record on-line:

Baptisms for the Cornish Parish of St Stithians
TREVITHICK     William     son of     Willm. & Mary,     02nd. April,     1797 

So his parents were William and Mary. A look at the parish records reveals five children baptised in the parish to William and Mary, and that they lived at nearby Wendron for some of this period:

Baptisms for the Cornish Parish of St Stithians

 TREVITHICK       Thomas       son of       William & Mary,       04th. March,       1792    Of Wendron.
TREVITHICK     Charity     dau of     William & Mary,     24th. June,     1793     Of Wendron.
TREVITHICK     Elizth.     dau of     William & Mary,     18th. August,     1799     
TREVITHICK     William     son of     Willm. & Mary,     02nd. April,     1797     
TREVITHICK     James     son of     Willm. & Mary,     04th. January,     1801     

This is interesting, because the eldest son is Thomas... if this is the correct William, his son may have been named after his eldest brother. It appears the mother, Mary was buried in 1802 (10 Dec 1802, Sithians, Betty 'wife of William') and father William died in 1827 (28 Jan 1827, Stithians, William 67, residence 'Gunnos Down Gwennap').

Parish records for Stithians in the period 1810-1830 for the same parish reveals more.

Son Thomas Trevithick had married a Mary as they had a son in 1818:

TREVITHICK     Thomas     son of     Thomas & Mary,     14th. January,     1818     Miner.

Son James Trevithick had marred an Anne as they had twins in 1830:
TREVITHICK       Mary Anne       dau of       James & Anne,       31st. October,       1830      Farmer.
TREVITHICK     William     son of     James & Anne,     31st. October,     1830     Farmer.

Finally, it appears son William had married a Joan as they had children in 1823 and 1825.
TREVITHICK     Jennifer     dau of     William & Joan,     13th. April,     1823     Farmer.
TREVITHICK     John     son of     William & Joan,     11th. December,     1825     Farmer.

(son John died the following year  9 Sep 1826, Trewilhick John, 1, Residence: Menherion in Wendron)

There is a remote possibility that William senior had re-married in prior to his death in 1827, but it seems more likely that William junior (chr. 1797) married a Joan. The marriage did not occur in Stithians, but renders it highly unlikely that William TREVITHICK of Stithians went on to marry Ann PENGILLY/ALLEN in Truro. Remember, William stated he was a bachelor when he married Ann in 1834, and at any rate, Joan Trevithick was buried at Wendron on 21 Apr 1847 aged 61.

More needs to be done!! This includes looking for holes in Cornish parish/non-conformist registers.

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