The 1901 census finds my great grandfather, George Londors, son of John and Sarah Londors (see last two posts) living at 9 Roding Cottages, in the parish of St Mary’s, Ilford. Barkingside-born George, 37, was working as a grave digger.  With him are his wife Sarah, 31, and their sons George, 4 (my grandfather), and Albert, 8 months, all born in Ilford. Also at the same address are Mabel Young, 7, described as George’s step-daughter, born in Ilford; his brother Albert, 34, a navvy, born in Barkingside; and his brother-in-law Isaac Pumfrett, 27, a carman, born in Ilford.

This census record has intrigued me for some time, and it poses a number of questions. If Mabel Young is George Londors’ step-daughter, it means that his wife Sarah must have been married before, to someone named Young. But who was her first husband, when did they marry, and when did he die? And if Isaac Pumfrett is George’s brother-in-law, does that mean that Sarah’s maiden name was also Pumfrett?

In trying to answer these questions, I started by looking for a Sarah Pumfrett who might be linked to Isaac in some way. In the process, I found out quite a lot about the Pumfretts. It appears that Isaac was born in about 1875, the son of another Isaac Pumfrett and his wife Jane, who were originally from Hornchurch and Sawbridgeworth respectively.

Interestingly, the 1881 and 1891 census have the Pumfretts living at 9 Roding Cottages: the same house that George and Sarah would occupy (with Isaac as a lodger) in 1901.  Even more interestingly, in 1891 the Pumfrett household includes two boarders: William Robinson and Charles Young, both 25. Could the latter be Sarah Londors’ first husband? However, I’ve failed to find any link between Sarah and the Pumfretts. Isaac seems to have been the only child of Issac senior and Jane Pumfrett.

Following a different tack, I sent for a copy of George and Sarah Londors’ marriage certificate. George Londors, 32, married Sarah Young, a widow of 27, on 19th September 1896, at the parish church in Forest Gate. Both were living at 123 Field Road, not far away. George’s father was John Londors, as we know. But Sarah’s father’s name is given as Thomas Shaw, brickmaker.  I also got hold of a copy of the birth certificate for my grandfather, George John Londors, who was born at 9 Roding Cottages on 14th December 1896 (i.e. less than 3 months after his parents’ wedding), which gives his mother’s name as ‘Sarah Londors, formerly Shaw’.

I’ve found a one year old Sarah Shaw, daughter of Thomas and Sarah Shaw, living in Adelaide Terrace, Barking, in 1871. I haven’t found any record of the family in the 1881 census, but there is mention of a 10 year Sarah Shaw living in Barking’s  Village Home for Orphan Neglected and Destitute Girls. I’ve yet to find any matching record in the 1891 census.

If Mabel Young was 7 in 1901, then she was born in about 1894. I’ve found a record online of a birth which would seem to match, in the last quarter of 1893, but I haven’t ordered the certificate yet. It’s likely, then, that Sarah was married to someone by the name of Young by 1893 at the latest. Assuming that the Pumfrett’s lodger was the most appropriate candidate, I searched for marriages between Charles Young and Sarah Shaw at around this time, and found one in the West Ham district in 1892, but again, I need to obtain the certificate to confirm that my hunch is correct. A Charles Ernest Young, born in 1872, died in the same district between April and June 1893.

So I’ve managed to answer one question: I now know the maiden name of my great grandmother Sarah Londors. But the connection to the Pumfretts, and how the Londors came to be living in their house in Roding Cottages, remain a mystery that I hope these additional birth, marriage and death certificates might solve.

In this rather gloomy copy of a photo of the 1925 wedding of my grandparents, George John Londors and Minnie Louisa Roe, you can just make out George and Sarah Londors seated at bottom left: