For those who’ve already read Part 1 of Fanny’s Story, the next few paragraphs provide background family events that occurred between the censuses of 1851 and 1861, before Fanny moved to live with members of another family in Chelsea.
By 1861 there are no records to be found of three of Fanny’s sisters, and her fourth sister, her only living brother and her father have all died. Later, in 1864, the death of Sophia Yates was recorded in the Drury Lane area, but unfortunately as I found no records of any Sophia Yates alive three years earlier (in the 1861 census) I was unable to establish which of Fanny’s relations called Sophia had died. I imagine it was Fanny’s mother as no middle name was recorded, but it could have been her younger sister Sophia Louisa Yates. Either way, this death was the only evidence I found that at least one of her relatives, her mother or her sister, must still have been alive when Fanny moved to a (slightly) new address.
Fanny’s life in Chelsea from 1861
In 1851 Fanny was living with her sister Phoebe in Manor Street, Chelsea. Some time after her sister died in 1859, but before 1861, Fanny moved just two doors down the road to lodge with the Tilling family. It seems likely that she was invited to become a lodger at her neighbours home not least because their family circumstances had changed too.
The Tilling Family of Manor Street, Chelsea.
William and Ann Read were married in St James Piccadilly in 1819. At that time Ann presumably could not write as their marriage record bears her mark, not her signature.
William was a milkman and he and Ann spent their first years of married life in paradise….Paradise Row, Chelsea that is!
Paradise Row, Chelsea in 1906
Their first child Ann was born in 1820 followed a year later by a son, William. In 1823 a third child Joseph Earl Tilling was born and in the same year William (senior) became a greengrocer. In 1825 the family moved a very short distance to Calthorpe Place, Chelsea. Some time between this move and the next, fairly major changes seem to have occurred. By 1839 the family had moved, once again only a short distance, but this time to a newly built street. Their new address was 30 Manor Street Chelsea and William’s occupation had changed from greengrocer to appraiser! (Some years later his widow’s occupation is given as ‘house agent’).
Was William Tilling involved in the building and selling of the houses in Manor Street Chelsea?
Unlike her husband who was born in Chelsea Middlesex, Ann Tilling née Read was born near the New Forest in West Tytherly, Hampshire (1793). Ann had several brothers and sisters, but the one of particular interest to us, along with Ann herself, was Jane Read. Jane married and had a large family with John Derrick, a shipwright on the Isle of Wight. We will meet Jane Derrick later in this story when her children are grown up and she is a widow. There will be more members of this family to meet as we go along but for now that’s enough to remember!
So, in 1851 when Fanny was still living with her sister, William and Ann Tilling were living up the road at number 29 Manor Street. (In 1848 they were still at number 30 Manor Street, so in the three years between, they either moved house or the street numbering system changed). Their unmarried daughter Sarah Tilling was still living with them but all their other children had left home. There was one other much younger Sarah Tilling also living with them in 1851 – William and Ann’s grandchild. Presumably she was either Sarah’s daughter or niece.
By 1861 when Fanny became a lodger at number 29 Manor Street, circumstances for the Tilling family were as different from 1851 for the Tillings as they were for her. William Tilling had died and Ann his wife had taken in other lodgers along with Fanny (Fanny’s occupation was now dressmaker).
Fanny Yates the lodger
The other lodgers in the property at 29 Manor Street were William Christie, who was 24 and ‘a shopman at a bazaar’, his younger brother Frederick of 22 was a bookbinder, and Lucy Smart, who was 78 was ‘a funded proprietor’.
Ann Tilling’s occupation was now ‘house proprietor’ and Sarah Tilling her unmarried daughter of no occupation was still living with her.
About five years later, at the age of 27, Frederick Christie the bookbinder and lodger at Ann Tilling’s house married Sarah Tilling, her unmarried daughter, in the parish church at Battersea, Surrey. Sarah’s father was interestingly described as a Broker on the record of their marriage, and Frances Harriet Yates (Fanny) and Joseph Earl Tilling (Sarah’s brother) were witnesses.
The census in 1871 started using odd and even listings for houses in Manor Street when previous censuses had shown consecutive house numbering. Whether this was the reason for yet another street number change or whether the Tilling household all moved to a house a couple of doors down, I don’t know. Whatever the reason, in 1871 Ann Tilling and Fanny were recorded as living at 32 Manor Street, Chelsea and Ann’s occupation had become house agent (estate agent). Living with them was Sarah and her new husband (and ex-lodger) Frederick Christie and presumably their 2 year old child, Sarah Ann Louisa Christie. Also living in the property was Ann’s widowed sister Jane Derrick (remember her – shipwrights wife, Isle of Wight?). Ten years before Jane had been living with one of her son’s and his family, at least on the day of the census. In 1871 she was in Chelsea and not listed as a visitor. Both widowed sisters were now in their seventies and perhaps enjoyed each others company?
The really exciting bit of the story is about to break!!
In the 1871 census Fanny Yates relationship with Ann Tilling changed from ‘lodger’ to ‘cousin’.
Fortunately, as storyteller, I have the advantage of being able to look into the future and can tell you that two years later, in 1873, Edward Cavendish Yates married Priscilla Jane Mecham which, if Fanny Yates were Edward’s mother, would indeed make Ann Tilling and Fanny Yates distant cousins.
There’s a bit more of the story to explain yet, but it will have to wait till next time. Thanks for reading and please do leave a reply if you’d like to comment or have anything to add.
Just thought I’d leave you with a picture of Edward Cavendish Yates Jnr. who was Fanny Yates’ eldest grandchild.
Sadly I don’t have a picture of the E.C.Yates who was her son, my great grandfather. If you do, I’d be delighted if you’d contact me or leave a reply below.
Next: The story of Frances (Fanny) Harriet Yates and her family – Part 3