Important update: 21 April 2011

Following recent research by my distant relative Robin Blanch, it now seems unlikely that James Blanch, the father of my ancestor John Blanch, was the son of William Blanch. However, I will leave  this post in place until further information becomes available.

In the last post I wrote about William Blanch and his wife Ann Cushee, and their son William and his wife Ann Yalden. The latter couple had two children: James and Ann. It’s from James that I trace my descent (he was my 4 x great grandfather) and I’ll write about him and his family in a future post.

In this post I want to record what is known about James’ sister Ann and her family, drawing on information I’ve recently gleaned from other family trees at Ancestry, and from my own research.

Ann, who was born in Holborn on 5 March 1758, married James Groom at the church of St. Clement Danes, Westminster, on 15 November 1783. This information comes from the International Genealogical Index but so far I’ve been unable to find a record of the marriage at Ancestry.  Judging by previous experience, this may be because many of the records from St. Clement Danes appear to be missing. James Groom, born in Harefield, Middlesex in September 1760, was the son of Henry Groom and Sarah Rowe.

According to other family trees at Ancestry, James and Ann had seven children. Francis Henry Groom was born at St. Botolph Bishopsgate on 29 August 1784, James Foster Groom on 15 April 1786, and Sarah Ann Groom in Camberwell in 1789. I’ve been unable to find baptismal records for any of these, but their remaining children were all baptised at St Michael Bassishaw (which stood on land now covered by the Barbican complex): John in October 1791; Hannah Harriet in September 1794; Mary Ann in October 1796; and Robert in May 1800.

St. Michael Bassishaw, Basinghall Street, London

It’s possible that James Groom died in Hyde Court, Camberwell in 1836 and Ann in Islington in 1844.

Francis Henry Groom married Elizabeth or Eliza Horne at St. Botolph Aldersgate on 11 August 1805. They had eight children: Francis Henry (1807), James Edward (1809), Alfred Joseph (1811), Frederick Butler (1815), Eliza Frances (1816), Edward Pittman (1819), Julia (1821) and Robert (1824).

Eliza died on 13 December 1828 and Francis Henry remarried on 4 September 1830 at St. Botolph’s Aldersgate, to Susannah Letitia Reynolds, the daughter of Richard Reynolds and Hannah Over. Francis and Susannah had five children: Jemima Hannah (1831), Letitia Elizabeth (1833), Seymour Richard (1837), George (1839) and Charles D’Oyley (1843). In 1841 the family was living in Dalston Rise, Hackney, and Francis Henry’s occupation is given as ‘scholastic’ (or schoolteacher). Susannah died in 1844 and Francis in 1848.

Map of Dalston, Hackney, in 1830

James Foster Groom married Mary Gayter at St. Giles in the Fields, Holborn, on 17 December 1808. They had six children: James Charles (born in 1807 in Shoreditch), Mary Ann (1809 in Southwark),  Emma (1810 in Kennington), Charles Edward (1813 in Southwark), (1815 in Southwark and died there in the following year), Frances Charles (1817 in Southwark), and William George (1819 in Southwark).

I’m not sure what became of Sarah Ann Groom or John Groom, though there’s a possibility that the latter died in 1798 at the age of seven. Hannah Groom died in 1798 at the age of four. Mary Ann Groom died in 1806 at the age of ten and Robert Groom in 1800 at the age of one. It’s possible, then, that Francis Henry Groom and James Foster Groom were the only children of James Groom and Ann Blanch who survived into adulthood.