During the 18th century my own branch of the Brush family of Gloucestershire (as oulined in this tree) is steadily moving east, though they have still only migrated 25 miles in over two centuries.
They end the 18th century at Inglesham, which is a small village in a finger of land at the very North East corner of Wiltshire. The red point on the map. The meeting point of Wiltshire, Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire and, at that time, Berkshire. On today's road maps it appears only as Upper Inglesham, a dot on the A361 between Lechlade and Swindon, but there are actually two separate settlements.
William, son of Isaac, was born in 1746(7) at Brinkworth, which is between Chippenham and Swindon - near to Royal Wooton Bassett on the left of the map.
William's marriage is 20 miles to the northeast, the other side of Swindon, in Buscot (now in Oxfordshire but at the time part of Berkshire) in 1772 to Mary MOULDER. Buscot is no more than two miles from Inglesham across the county boundary. It is apparently a very pretty village.
Their first child Mary was baptised in Buscot in May 1772 (just 3 months after the marriage - whoops) and dies as a child but Buscot does not feature again in the story.
William and Mary settled in Inglesham and it was there, close to the River Thames, at the church of St John the Baptist, that their remaining 6 children were baptised between 1774 and 1788. According to the 1801 census the population of Inglesham in 1801 was only 89. So maybe 20 households?
This description of the village is an extract from the Swindon Borough Council Conservation Area Appraisal,which contains a lengthy description of the charectar of the village and its buildings:
"Upper Inglesham is situated in rural surroundings …… about midway between Highworth and Lechlade, close to the River Cole which feeds the River Thames. It is a small hamlet of dwellings and farm buildings [now] divided by a busy main road….. that appears to have expanded in the 18th century from much earlier origins. Four substantial 18th century farmhouses in the hamlet testify to the agricultural basis of this small isolated settlement whose parish church and former rectory are to be found a short distance to the north ….[where] there is an even smaller settlement beside the River Thames known as Lower Inglesham (or simply Inglesham). This is a collection of old buildings including medieval church , old vicarage and farmhouse (formerly a mill). Perhaps Upper Inglesham, which lies on a slight rise in the land, was found to be less damp and less prone to flooding than the settlement beside the church which sits immediately beside the infant River Thames. …. John Rocque's 1761 map of Berkshire shows the settlement as 'Englesham'
Since both hamlets were within a single parish the family may have lived in either one but it sounds as if they were part of the expansion which occurred in Upper Inglesham around the time of their arrival.
The description above refers to Inglesham as being beside the "infant" River Thames. Inglesham was in fact the head of navigation on the Thames and it was also the starting point for the Thames & Severn Canal which linked the Thames with the Gloucester & Sharpness Canal linking through to the River Severn. The new canal with its lock and turning basin was being built and opened as the family was growing up.
"Whereas the making and maintaining a Canal, with a proper Collateral Cut, for the Navigation of Boats, Barges, and other Vessels, from the River Thames, or Isis, at some place at or near Lechlade, in the County of Gloucester, to join and communicate with a Navigable Cut or Canal, now made between the Town of Stroud and the River Severn, in the said County of Gloucester, will open an early Communication between the interior Parts of the Kingdom and the Port of London..... 1783 Act"
This raises the possibility that the later migration of the four sons to London might have been by boat. There would surely have been travellers or boat crews passing through the village talking about London and what it offered.
According to pikelock.co.uk:
"The Inglesham section, where the Thames and Severn Canal made its junction with the River Thames, was the last part of the canal to be built during 1789. Next to the lock is one of the famous T&S Canal roundhouses…. which had inverted conical roofs. Rain falling on the roof was channelled to a lead collecting bowl in the centre which was connected to a cistern which stored water for drinking purposes … The roundhouse was probably built in 1790, just after the canal opened. …….Inglesham Lock is still has its original 90ft length, there being no real shortage of water in this part of the canal. The rather pleasant stone bridge at its tail has the date 14th November 1789 inscribed on it - and the first boat passed through the whole length of the canal just 5 days later."
The BRUSH children were between 4 and 15 when the canal was opened. It is hard to imagine that one or more of them would not have been present at the event.
We know nothing more about the life of either William or Mary other than the baptisms of their children. Why were they in Buscot and Inglesham? The village and history of Buscot seem to be dominated by the house and estate of Buscot Park but this was not created until around 1780. In 1772 the manor estate seems to have belonged to Sir Robert Throckmorton (a family name which has appeared elsewhere on the fringes of the Brush story) and maybe work was the reason for their move. It seems to be one of the cliches of life - that men move because of work and women.
The move from Brinkworth to, or towards, Buscot & Inglesham may have occurred earlier than their marriage. William's father Isaac had died in 1753 when William was just 7, and he had two younger siblings - Elizabeth and Thomas. Also in 1753 there is a death in Brinkworth of Mary. The Brinkworth register at that time routinely identifies some deaths as the son or daughter of X or as the wife of Y. Mary is given no such identification suggesting she was either an adult spinster or a widow. If this was their mother (nee Cove), rather than their aunt, then they would have been orphans, and somene - presumably a family memnber would have taken over their care.
In 1776 or 1778 William's sister Elizabeth gets married in Faringdon in Berkshire. The Ancestry record states 1778, but there is no image of the register. Her husband John Iles is from Highworth (which is between Swindon and Inglesham) and their banns were called at Highworth in December 1775 and January 1776. Which makes both October 1778 sound very strange. Even October 1776 would be odd. Inglesham to Highworth is three and a half miles, Swindon is a further seven miles. Faringdon is 6 miles from Inglesham and eight from Highworth.
In 1790 there is a burial of another Mary BRUSH, at Highworth. There is a interesting note in the margin of the parish register for 1790 which reads "The small pox raged so furiously that the whole parish were necessitated to be innoculated". This was the first Brush entry in the Highworth registers of an 'event'. It could have been William's mother (who would then have been around 65) or it could be another relative. That Mary should have ended up with her daughter Elizabeth is a reasonable story but it does require her to have remained as a widow for 37 years from 1753. The entry has 'P.P.' alongside it - which an earlier page of the register notes to indicate 'poor of the parish' who receive alms and do not therefore have to pay a tax associated with the entry.
There is yet another Mary Brush entry - a marriage at Chedworth in 1770. I am unsure whether she should be part of this particular story.
In 1780 William's brother Thomas marries in Swindon in 1780 - but spends part of his life in Highworth.
There is a death in Inglesham of a William Brush in 1801 - which fits well with 'normal' expectations - age 55. Mary dies 1820 at Inglesham age 72 - which indicates a birth year of 1847/8.
An Ancestry search for births in 1847 +/- 5 years gives five possible births for Mary Moulder in Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire. The best fit to her given age at death is the baptism at Coln St Aldwyn on 5 March 1746. The way the entries are presented in the Bishops transcript suggests that this is 1746 old style - so 1747 new style. Also, her daughter Martha later moves to Coln St Aldwyn, which is 8 miles north of Buscot. If this conclusion is right her parents were John and Catherine Moulder. I cannot find their marriage but there are deaths for both in Coln in the 1780s.
Mary, their first child, was baptised in Buscot in May 1772. She is buried there later that year.
Ancestry does not offer any images for the Inglesham registers from this period. But it does list several baptisms:
Martha on 13 March 1774. She marries John BURROWS at Coln St Aldwyns on 8 February 1802.
5 children are then baptised there between 1802 and 1815 - Mary, George, Jane, Elizabeth and Isaac. Multiple later census entries for George give his birthplace as Hatherop, which looks to be part of the parish. Ancestry has quite a lot of material about George. I have not yet investigated him or the other children further.
According to the colnstaldwyns.com website the village stores , seen here, was in the early 19th century used as a school for the girls of the village.
John, Martha and unmarried daughter Mary Ann are living at Williamstrip Park in Coln St Aldwyns at the 1851 census. Although he is 70 something he is still listed as a farm [??] . Labourer? The whole parish of Coln fits onto 27 census pages, around 500 people.
It was dominated by Williamstrip Park - which was a rather grand estate owned by the Hicks Beach family. There is lots of detail about the estate, house and family on the colnstaldwyns.com website
Mary Ann Burrowes is named as a niece and left ten pounds in the 1855 will of Elizabeth, the widow of Isaac - Martha's brother.
Martha dies age 79 and is buried at Coln St Aldwyns on 28 January 1853.
Samuel on 20 October 1776 His story continues in chapter 24.A
Thomas on 8 August 1779 His story continues in chapter 24.D
Isaac on 23 December 1781 His story continues in chapter 24.B
William on 4 September 1785 His story continues in chapter 24.C
Susannah. My father's notes confidently assert that Susannah was baptised on 6 July 1788 but this does not show up at all in the Ancestry records. I am fairly confident he will have examined the register itself - or a microfilm of it. He also records the marriage of Susannah to John Titchener at Inglesham on 20 April 1810. Ancestry list this marriage as being between John Tichener and Sarah Brading - both of the parish. I can find no records of any childen to this marriage.
What is clear is that a Susan Titchener,widow, marries John Green, son of William Green, at Highworth on 21 December 1838. The register entry clearly identifies William Brush, labourer, as her father.
There were two burials of a John Titchener in Bishopstone in 183 (age ) and 183 (age ). However my father's notes say that John was buried at Highworth on 8 June 1832. Ancestry indexes agree there was a burial there on that date but say it was of John TITAHAUES. I simply don't believe that - it is the only recorded instance of that surname anywhere. Highworth is ust three and a half miles from Inglesham.
Susannah Green is named as the sister in law of Elizabeth, the widow of Isaac - Susannah's brother, in her 1855 will. She is left the sum of ten pounds.
Chapter 23B: Thomas of Swindon
The following table of references is really just for my benefit but if you wish to locate any of the individuls within Wikitree you can click on the link in the final column.
|William Brush||FWB 58||Gc 456||WT Brush-622|
|Mary Moulder||Gc 457||WT Brush-427|
|Mary Ann Brush||FWB 64||Gc 458||WT Brush-624|
|Martha Brush||FWB 65||Gc 459||WT Brush-625|
|Samuel Brush||FWB 66||Gc 460||WT Brush-626|
|Thomas Brush||FWB 67||Gc 461||WT Brush-621|
|Isaac Brush||FWB 68||Gc 462||WT Brush-627|
|William Brush||FWB 69||Gc||WT Brush-628|
|Susanna Brush||FWB 70||Gc 462||WT Brush-1048|