Previous:     Section 31: Lewis & Mardlin
The WALLIS name is of particular interest to me. My middle name is Wallis, as it was for my father Fred Wallis BRUSH and my great-grandfather Arthur Wallis BRUSH. It comes from Mary Ann WALLIS who at age 21 married my great-great-grandfather John Thomas BRUSH in 1853. She was a dress-maker. At the time of their marriage they each give the same address - 14 Tachbrook Street, which appears as the WALLIS family home in the 1861 census. The story of John Thomas BRUSH is in Section x Chapter x of the BFBI.
Mary Ann's marriage certificate shows her father to be George Gurnett WALLIS, a Dyer, and one of the witnesses to be Mary WALLIS. At the 1841 census George Wallis (age 30-34), a Dyer, and wife Mary (age 30-34) are living at 8 Loughborough Place - a row of terraced houses fronting the Brixton Road in Camberwell, built around 1808-1810. They shared the house with one other family and two single men. George and Mary had three children Mary Ann age 10, Thomas age 5 and Elizabeth age 1. George and Mary are both shown as born within the county - Surrey. The correlation to the later marriage certificate for Mary Ann to John Thomas BRUSH is pretty near perfect.
In the 1851 census George, wife Mary, daughter Mary Ann (age 19) and her siblings are at 10 Graham Street in Westminster.
He is more specifically identified as a silk dyer and his age given as 46, making his birth date 1804/5. His place of birth is given as Croydon in Surrey in this and other censuses. The birthplace for daughter Mary Ann is given as Bermondsey in Surrey, which is just down river from Tower Bridge.
Graham Street is now known as Graham Terrace. It is about 200m south east of Sloane Square. The census enumerator helpfully, and unusually, included a sketch map of his district. What is shown on that map as Westbourne Street is now Bourne Street. The Wallis home seems to have been the fourth house along from the junction on the north side, roughly where the red shape is. The housing there now is either much restored or a modern recreation of an older style. The street numbering has changed since 1851. No.10 was roughly were no.41 is today. The section of Passmore Street shown on the sketch is no longer there.
At the 1861 census, by which time they are at Tachbrook Street about 1 mile east of Graham Street. George's age is given as 53 - which gives a later birth date of 1807/8.
At the 1871 census they are still at Tachbrook Street with just one child still at home; Henry age 24 a piano tuner. Plus two boarders. Within the same house but also described as a head of household is Elizabeth Pailthurp[??] , widow plus a grandson Albert.
At 1881 George is living in the household of his grandson Arthur Wallis Brush with other grandchildren at 2 Eelbrook Gardens in Fulham.
He dies in Q1 1885, age 78 (though actually 77y11m according to baptism record) in the Fulham RD and is buried at Brompton Cemetery on March 18th. The place of death is recorded as 9 Moore Park Road, Fulham. He is noted as 'dissent' as opposed to 'church'. The place of death is recorded as 9 Moore Park Road, Fulham. He is noted as 'dissent' as opposed to 'church'. Which probably means Methodist. Arthur Wallis Brush was a Methodist Local Preacher.
For a long while I could find no record of his baptism, looking in the period 1805 to 1808. But, given his middle name, confidently assumed that George Gurnett WALLIS was the son of James WALLIS and Hester GURNETT who married in 1803 at St George in the Borough - Southwark , and baptised son James at Croydon in 1805. There were also other Wallis families in Croydon at the same time.
The answer is that although George was born on 5 April 1807 he was not baptised until 1812. This record from the Family History Library seems clear and detailed. No image of the 1812 register seems to be available online even though 1811 and 1813 are. Henry Wallis, born 1809, was also baptised on the same day.
Tracking the WALLIS line back from here is a bit speculative. There is no 1841 census entry for Hester WALLIS and the two most likely James entries in Surrey would both involve him being (a) younger than Hester and (b) having remarried. Both are possible but it is equally likely that both James and Hester had died before reaching age 70.
There is a burial of an Esther Wallis in Southwark in 1820, age 45 with, interestingly, her abode being recorded as St John's Westminster. But this age is a few years out from what is believed to be the birth of Hester GURNETT at Dorking in 1772 to George and Susanna.
In finding marriage partners we commonly make two assumptions; that they are of a similar age and come from a nearby location. Both are of course open to challenge. If we assume James Wallis was baptised within five years either side of Hester and within ten miles of either Southwark or Dorking or Croydon there are multiple candidates. An Ancestry search for Surrey baptisms in the period 1767 to 1777 gives 5 hits for James Wallis and one for James Wallace (net of duplicates). There are plenty more in London and Middlesex.
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