The Breach Family's Sussex Origins

A Family History Blog by Alison Vainlo (Breach)

Sunday, 11 March 2018

Associated Line AL7 - The Harper Family 1791 - 1950

This branch merges with the Fox line (AL8)  before joining the Main Ancestral Breach Line through David P Breach (b. 1907) and Nora Fox (b. 1910) (Generation Eleven). Names in bold type continue the ancestral line down. 


Click here to view main ancestral chart.



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Derbyshire Map


The Harper family had their origins in North Yorkshire before some migrated south to Derbyshire.






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First Branch Generation
AG1 - Thomas Harper and Jane Smith 1791 – 1885
Thomas was born in 1797 in Old Malton, North Yorkshire. He was an agricultural labourer and married Jane Smith (b. 1791 in Bulmer) on the 5th of September 1818, in Old Malton. They lived in Ryton, which is near Malton. They had six children as follows:
  1. Hannah Smith (b. 1818) Married Robert Jackson (b. 1821, d. 1842)
  2. John (b. 1822) John continues the ancestral line down below.
  3. Mary Ann (b. 1824)
  4. William (b. 1828)
  5. Charles (b. 1830)
  6. Jane (b. 1832)

On the 1851 census daughter Hannah (now Jackson) is seen back with her parents, widowed at the age of thirty two, she was working as an agricultural labourer like her father.

Thomas died on the 24th of January 1867. Jane died on the 25th of June 1885, both in Ryton, North Yorkshire.

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Second Branch Generation
AG2 - John Harper and Mary Brocklebank 1813 – 1891
John Harper was born in Ryton in 1822, the son of Thomas Harper (b. 1797) and Jane Smith (b. 1791). He married Mary Brocklebank (b. 1813 in Wharram-le-Street) on the 23 November 1844. They lived at Ryton first before moving to Great Habton sometime between 1847 and 1849. John worked as an agricultural labourer and he and Mary had six children as follows:
  1. Mary Ann (b. 1845) Mary Ann continues the ancestral line down below.
  2. Thomas (b. 1847, d 1921)
  3. Jane (b. 27 May 1849, d. 1940) She had an illegitimate daughter, Anne Maria in 1873. Married Thomas Davison in 1888 (See below).
  4. Charles (b. 1851, d. 1922) Married Sarah Johnson on 29th November 1875.
  5. Hannah (b. 1854)
  6. Rachel (b. 1859, d. 1924)

John died in 1859, aged thirty four. Mary on the 2nd of April 1891. Both died in Great Habton.

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Third Branch Generation
AG3 - Mary Ann Harper and James Mead 1839 - 1919
Mary Ann was born in Ryton, North Yorkshire in 1845, the daughter of John Harper (b. 1822) and Mary Brocklebank (b. 1813).

By the age of sixteen, Mary Ann working as a house servant for farmer William Barker in Great Habton.

Mary Ann gave birth to an illegitimate daughter Emma (see below) on the 25th of November 1870. When the census was taken, four months later Mary Ann and Emma were living in a shared house in Wharram-le-Street.

Mary Ann had another illegitimate child, John in 1873 in Malton, North Yorkshire. A few months later, on the 25th of August 1873, she married James Mead (b. 28th August 1839) in Malton. After marrying, she seems to have left her daughter Emma in the care of her mother, Mary while she, her new husband and baby son moved to Darley in Derbyshire. 



James Mead worked as a farm labourer, and Mary Ann had three  children together, all born in Darley, Derbyshire, as follows: 

  1. Sarah Jane (b. 6 Feb 1876, d. Feb 1877)
  2. Alfred James (b. Jan 1879, d. Apr 1879)
  3. Charles William (b. 27 Apr 1880, d. 1956)

Mary Ann died on the 10th of February 1883 in Bakewell, Derbyshire of 'acute Phthisis exhaustion', which was another description for Tuberculosis.

James Mead remarried just under a year later, on January the 21st 1884. He married Louisa Willmot (b. 1840 Darley, Derbyshire). 


His new wife already had an illegitimate son, Leonard Willmot, born in 1881 in Bakewell. A daughter, Edith Alice was born in the July quarter of 1883; she was registered a 'Mead' although James and Louisa didn't marry until the following January. This leaves question marks over her parentage which cannot be answered at the moment.


James Mead died in 1901 in Bakewell, and Louisa died in 1919, also in Bakewell.



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Emma Harper



Fourth Branch Generation
AG4 - Emma Harper 1870 - 1950
Emma was born on the 25th of November 1870 in Great Habton. She was the first illegitimate child of Mary Ann Harper. When Emma was about two and half years old, her mother gave birth to an illegitimate son, John and shortly after married James Mead.

For reasons not understood Emma was left in the care of her Grandmother Mary while Mary Ann, her husband and son moved to Derbyshire.  

Emma Harper continued to live in the Malton area and gave birth to an illegitimate daughter, Mary Ann in 1890. The 1891 census shows that Emma was working as a general domestic servant at a farm in Little Habton. Her daughter Mary Ann was in the care of Jane Davison (see below), Emma's Aunt in nearby Great Habton. 

Emma married Tom Fox (b. 1861) in 1892. They lived in Great Barugh, North Yorkshire had nine surviving daughters. 

Emma died on the 14th of February 1950.

Emma continues the ancestral line down, see link below.



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From the Second Branch Generation above
Jane Harper 1849 - 1940
Jane was born on 27th May 1849 in Great Habton to John Harper and Mary Brocklebank. 

In 1873 Jane gave birth to an illegitimate daughter Anne Maria. 

She married Thomas Davison (b. 1856) in 1888 and they settled in Great Habton. In 1889 Jane gave birth to a daughter Mary Elizabeth Davison.

Two years later according to the 1891 census, Jane and Thomas had the care of their niece Emma Harper's (b. 1870) daughter, Mary Ann (b. 1890) who was nine months old at the time.

Jane died in 1940 in Pickering, North Yorkshire.


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Alison Vainlo 2018




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