Census records

1909 watercolour of Bidston Hill

1909 watercolour of Bidston Hill

These are my transcriptions from census records. I have generally preserved the original spelling, with the exception of standard abbreviations, which I have normalised.

1841

The 1841 census recorded a bare minimum of detail (no addresses, and no relationships between household members), and ages over 15 were rounded down to the nearest multiple of 5 years. In the census return for the township of Bidston cum Ford, we can identify a few people who were definitely associated with the Telegraph and Lighthouse:

  • Thomas Nichols, 40, Telegraph Keeper, b. Cheshire.
  • Jane Nichols, 30, b. Cheshire.
  • Mary Ann Nichols, 3, b. Cheshire.
  • Ann Urmson, 35, Lighthouse Keeper, b. Cheshire.
  • Catherine Urmson, 30, b. Cheshire.
  • Sarah Bird, 15, b. Cheshire.
  • Catherine Voice, 75, b. Cheshire.

Catherine Voice was the sister of the late lighthouse keeper William Urmson, and aunt to Ann, Jane and Catherine.

1851

At the telegraph:

  • Thomas Nicholls, head, married, 51, telegrapher, b. Cheshire, Lower Bebington.
  • Jane Nicholls, wife, married, 45, b. Cheshire, Bidston.
  • Mary Anne Nicholls, daughter, unmarried, 13, b. Cheshire, Bidston.
  • Mary Morgan, servant, unmarried, 28, assistant telegrapher, b. Lancashire, Manchester.
  • Owen Maddock, visitor, unmarried, 16, servant, b. Chester, Bidston.

At the lighthouse:

  • John Urmston, head, married, 44, Lighthouse Keeper, b. Cheshire, Saughall Massie.
  • Ann Urmston, wife, married, 44, b. Cheshire, Bidston.
  • Sarah Baker, servant, married, 29, General Servant, b. Lancashire, Liverpool.
  • Catherine Baker, visitor, unmarried, 55, Servant out of Place, b. Cheshire, Moreton cum Larton.
  • John Hamson, visitor, married, 39, Shoe Maker Master, b. not known.
  • Mary Hamson, visitor, married, 35, Shoe Maker’s Wife, b. Chester, Bebbington.

Actually, Ann Urmson was the lighthouse keeper, and she was assisted by her husband John. John and Ann were second cousins.

1861

  • Thomas Nichols, head, married, 62, Electric Telegraph Keeper, b. Cheshire, Lower Bebbington
  • Jane Nichols, wife, married, 55, b. Cheshire, Bidston
  • Joseph Irvine, servant, unmarried, 16, Assistant Telegrapher, b. Cumberland, Whitehaven
  • Margaret Barlow, servant, unmarried, 21, General Servant, b. Cheshire, Greasby
  • John Urmson, head, married, 54, Lighthouse Keeper empl. 1 man, b. Cheshire, Saughall Massie
  • Ann Urmson, wife, married, 56, b. Cheshire, Bidston
  • Samuel Mayson, servant, unmarried, 39, General Servant, b. Cheshire, Saughall Massie
  • Ellen Wharton, servant, unmarried, 24, General Servant, b. Cheshire, Bidston

1871

Bidston Hill Lighthouse and Electric Telegraph:

  • James Adams, head, married, 64, Lighthouse Keeper and Electric Telegrapher, b. Cornwall, Kilkhampton
  • Esther Adams, wife, married, 54, Wife, b. Anglesea, Beaumaris
  • Jane Jones Adams, daughter, unmarried, 18, worker of Electric Telegraph, b. Anglesea, Llaneilian
  • Barbara Adams, daughter, 14, Daughter, b. Anglesea, Beaumaris
  • Esther Adams, daughter, 9, Daughter, b. Cheshire, Bidston

It’s worth noting that Point Lynas Lighthouse is located by Llaneilian, Anglesey.

Bidston Hill Observatory:

  • John C. Hartnup, head, married, 65, Astronomer, b. Kent, Pembury.
  • Susannah Hartnup, wife, married, 48, Astronomer Wife, b. Kent, West Fairleigh
  • John Hartnup, son, unmarried, 30, Astronomer Assistant, b. Middlesex, Strand
  • Ellen Sutton, visitor, unmarried, 31, Visitor, b. Middlesex, London
  • Rosalinda Henry, servant, unmarried, 26, Housemaid, Ireland
  • Johanna Schroder, servant, widow, 46, Cook, Germany, Bremen

Bidston Hill

  • John Urmson, head, widower, 64, Lighthouse Keeper’s Assistant, b. Cheshire, Saughall Massie
  • Samuel Mason, servant, unmarried, 50, General Servant, b. Cheshire, Bidston
  • Ellen Wharton, servant, unmarried, 35, Housekeeper, b. Cheshire, Bidston

1881

Park Cottage:

  • John Hartnup Jnr, head, married, 40, Astronomer, b. Middlesex, London
  • Lucy Hartnup, wife, married, 30, Astronomer’s wife, b. Kent, Ashford
  • Eliza Bond, servant, unmarried, 48, Gen. Serv. (Domestic), b. Lancashire, Bootle

Bidston Lighthouse:

  • James H. Askew, head, married, 30, Lighthouse Keeper, b. Lancashire, Liverpool
  • Esther Askew, wife, married, 19, Lighthouse Keeper’s Wife, b. Cheshire, Bidston
  • Albert J. Askew, son, – , 11 months, – , b. Cheshire, Bidston
  • William Mathias, head, married, 45, Lighthouse Keeper, b. Cheshire, Hilbre Is.
  • Margaret Mathias, wife, married, 36, – , b. Anglesea, Holyhead
  • John Mathias, son, unmarried, 18, Joiner, b. Anglesea, Holyhead
  • John S. Hughes, head, married, 52, Light & Telegraph Keeper, b. Anglesea, Llaneilian
  • Catherine Hughes, wife, married, 50, Keeper’s Wife, b. Anglesea, Llanbadrig

Bidston Observatory:

  • John C. Hartnup, head, married, 75, Astronomer, b. Kent, Pembury
  • Susannah Hartnup, wife, married, 58, Astronomer’s Wife, b. Kent, Fairleigh
  • John Rawlins, boarder, unmarried, 19, Asst. Computer, b. Befordshire, Bedford
  • Hannah F. Startup, visitor, unmarried, 22, Farmer’s Daughter, b. Kent, Ashford
  • Mary J. Startup, visitor, unmarried, 21, Farmer’s Daughter, b. Kent, Ashford
  • Isabella May, servant, unmarried, 22, Forester’s Daughter / Servant, b. Scotland
  • Sophia May, servant, unmarried, 22, Forester’s Daughter / Servant, b. Scotland
  • Torsoon N. Rundell, visitor, unmarried, 25, Average Adjuster, b. Cornwall, Falmouth

Brae Hd. Cottage:

  • John Urmson, head, widower, 75, – , b. Cheshire, Saughall
  • Ellen Warton, house-keeper, unmarried, 45, Housekeeper, b. Cheshire, Bidston
  • Sarah A. Felton, servant, unmarried, 29, Gen. Serv., b. Lancashire, Liverpool
  • Samuel Mason, servant, unmarried, 60, Gen. Serv., b. Cheshire, Bidston
  • George Harding, lodger, married, 52, Joiner, b. Cheshire, Chester

1891

Bidston Hill Observatory:

  • John Hartnup, head, married, 50, Astronomer, employed, b. London, St. Mary le Strand
  • Lucy Hartnup, wife, married, 40, – , b. Kent, Ashford
  • Kathleen Hammond, sister-in-law, single, 28, Living on own means, b. Kent, Ashford
  • Eliza Bond, servant, single, 53, Cook Domestic Serv., b. Lancashire, Bootle
  • Emma Houghland, servant, single, 21, Housemaid Domestic Serv., b. Cheshire, Birkenhead

Bidston Hill, No 1 Lighthouse Cottage:

  • David Chambers, head, married, 55, Lighthouse keeper, employed, b. Caernarvon, Caernarvon
  • Catherine Chambers, wife, married, 46, – , b. Lancashire, Liverpool
  • Catherine Chambers, daughter, single, 19, – , b. Lancashire, Liverpool
  • Ellen Chambers, daughter, single, 14, – , b. Cheshire, New Brighton

Bidston Hill, No 2 Lighthouse Cottage:

  • Alfred H. Morgan, head, married, 26, Assistant Lighthouse keeper, employed, b. Lancashire, Liverpool

Bidston Hill, No 3 Lighthouse Cottage:

  • William Kaney, head, married, 47, Assistant Lighthouse keeper, employed, b. Hants, Portsmouth
  • Ellen Kaney, wife, married, 31, – , b. Lancashire, Liverpool
  • Rose Kaney, daughter, single, 7, – , b. Lanchashire, Liverpool
  • Albert Kaney, son, single, 3, – , b. Cheshire, Hoylake

1901

Bidston Hill Observatory:

  • William Plummer, head, married, 53, Astronomer, worker, b. Kent, Deptford
  • Sarah Plummer, wife, married, 51, – , – , b. Kent, Plumstead
  • Alice Plummer, daughter, single, 29, – , – , b. Middlesex, Twickenham
  • Henry Plummer, son, single, 25, Demonstrator (Physics), worker, b. Oxfordshire, Oxford
  • Paul Plummer, son, single, 17, Articled accountant, worker, b. Oxfordshire, Oxford
  • Dora Duffin, servant, single, 39, Cook domestic, worker, b. Lancashire, Liverpool

Bidston Hill Lighthouse, house 1:

  • David Chambers, head, married, 65, Lighthouse keeper, worker, b. Caernarvonshire, Caerarvon
  • Catherine Chambers, wife, married, 55, – , – , b. Lancashire, Liverpool
  • Ellen Chambers, daughter, single, 22, Teacher of music, worker, b. Cheshire, New Brighton

Bidston Hill Lighthouse, house 2:

  • Ernest Austin, head, married, 24, Lighthouse keeper, worker, b. Cheshire, Birkenhead

Bidston Hill Lighthouse, house 3:

  • J. H. Askew, head, married, 50, Lighthouse keeper & telegraphist, worker, b. Liverpool, Lancashire
  • Esther Askew, wife, married, 38, – , – , b. Bidston, Cheshire
  • Florence M. Askew, daughter, single, 18, pupil teacher, – , – , b. Bidston, Cheshire
  • Paul R. Askew, son, – , 10, School pupil, – , b. Hoylake, Cheshire

1911

Bidston Hill Observatory:

  • William Edward Plummer, head, 62, married, Astronomer, Mersey Docks and Harbour Board, worker, b. St. Paul’s, Deptford, Kent
  • Sarah Ann Plummer, wife, 61, married (40 years, 3 children, 3 still living, 0 died), b. Plumstead, Kent
  • Alice Plummer, daughter, 39, single, Teacher of Domestic Subjects, Council, b. Twickenham, Middlesex
  • Phoebe Davies, servant, 33, single, Cook (Domestic), b. Birkenhead, Chester

Lighthouse, Bidston Hill:

  • Charles Stanford, head, 58, married, Lighthouse Keeper, Mersey Dock Board, Worker, b. Sussex Hove Brighton
  • Ann Elizabeth Stanford, wife, 58, married (32 years, 6 children, 5 still living, 1 died), b. Salop, Oswestry
  • Eleanor Susan Stanford, daughter, 27, single, b. Liverpool, Toxteth Park
  • Chas. Stanford, head, 29, married, Lighthouse Keeper, Mersey Dock and Harbour Board, Worker, b. Liverpool, Lancs.
  • Agnes S. Stanford, wife, 26, married (2 years, 1 child, 1 still living, 0 died), b. Gt Yarmouth, Norfolk
  • Chas. Stanford, son, under 1 month
  • Alfred Herbert Morgan, head, 44, married, Assistant Lighthouse Keeper, Mersey Dock & Harbour Board, Worker, b. Liverpool, Lancashire
  • Jane Morgan, wife, 46, married (7 years, 2 children, 2 still living, 0 died), b. Bothel, Cumberland
  • Joseph Harrison Morgan, son, 8, b. Great Orme, Carnarvonshire
  • Robert Percy Morgan, son, 6, b. Bidston, Cheshire

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