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Adamthwaite Archive

"The website IS the one-name study!"



Reverend William Adamthwaite (1779-1849)

son of Thomas Adamthwaite and Mary (Pearson) - OLIVE line



In 1826 Rev. William Adamthwaite was the Vicar of West Stockwith, a pleasant village on the West bank of the Trent – four miles NNW of Gainsborough at the southern extremity of the Isle of Axholme.  It contained  90 houses & 618 inhabitants.  A fair was held annually  on the 4 (wk??) of September for horses and horned cattle.  In 1714 a ships’ carpenter left by will certain lands and 740 pounds in money for the purpose of building a Chapel of Ease for the maintenance of a minister and for erecting 10 cottages 


for the village, each to receive 10 pounds per annum.  He also directed the sum of 5 pounds to be paid to a schoolmaster for the children of shipwrights and seamen to read and write.  In 1826 there were William Farr shipsmith, William Cullwood, Mariner, Robert Brown mariner in the village.  In 1841 the Rev. W. Adamthwaite was still the Vicar.


There were Bomforth and Taylor boat builders, Thomas Wagstaff boat owner and Wm. Waterhouse wharfinger.


In 1826 Goods carried by water to Retford Wed. & Sat. 5am returning ½ past 8 in the evening. Gainsborough Tuesday and Thursday 8am to 6pm. Goods also conveyed by the Chesterfield Canal to Retford.


But as well as his parish, Rev William also had an interest in the Academy at Winton, run by his brother, Rev John Adamthwaite, or so it appears from the advertisements placed in the Times (see Press articles).


In 1818, William married Sarah Flower in Misterton, and they had three children: Edwin, Emma and William (though the youngest, William, died at the age of three).  It is possible that the two older children were named after the ill-fated lovers in the then popular 'Ballad of Edwin and Emma' by David Mallett.  


The tragedy was based on a real life event which took place in Bowes (where Rev William's brother Rev Joseph was curate from 1797 to 1810) and the young lovers are buried in Bowes churchyard.


The Bowes Parish Records record the real-life tragedy thus:


"Roger Wrightson, jun and Martha Railton, both of Bowes, buried on one grave; he died in a fever; and upon hearing his passing bell, she cried out, My heart is broke, and in a few hours expired supposed thro' love, March 15th 1714, aged about 20 years each"


You can read the Ballad of Edwin and Emma, courtesy of Google Books, here, in addition to the poem itself, there are pages of notes about the real life events on which it was based. (Also see notes at foot of page about other information revealed in the book)

From census information, it looks as if Sarah and William may have separated, as in the 1841 census Rev William is living in West Stockwith, but his wife Sarah was living in Frances St, Kingston upon Hull with her married daughter Emma Raynes and her son Edwin was also living there.


Sarah Adamthwaite died at 2 Bickley Road in Rotherhithe, London in January 1846 aged 56 years, the cause of death was 'Hypertrophy of the heart, several years' and the person who reported her death was Mary Thorndike, present at the death, of Cow Lane Rotherhithe.  Perhaps she was living in Rotherhithe with her daughter, as Emma's son William Adamthwaite Raynes was born in Rotherhithe the following year.


Rev William died in May 1949 at West Stockwith aged 69 years, occupation Clergyman, cause of death decay of nature.  The death was reported by his daughter Emma Raynes, present at the death.


Whilst Emma went on to a life in America (see Miscellany 3) her brother Edwin seems to have been passed around the family! In 1851 he was living in Winton with his aunt Hannah Burrell.  We have not found him in the 1861 census in England, but we did find an Edwin Adamthwaite of the right age on a passenger ship to America in September of 1851. Did he travel to visit his sister?


In 1871 Edwin was back in England living with his cousin Ann Lord in Winton and in 1881 with his cousin William Burrell in Winton (in all these entries he was described as an annuitant, or of 'independent means' - so clearly his father left him financially independent - see Rev William's will.


By the time of the 1891 census, Edwin was a patient in St Cuthbert's Lunatic Asylum in Whitehaven, Cumberland and later that year he died there.


We have recently discovered a poem written 'to Edwin Adamthwaite Esquire' by Jarvis William Close (who was also a patient at St Cuthberts), and the text of this will shortly be included in a new Miscellany section 'an Adamthwaite Anthology'.  Jarvis Close was the son of a very popular poet of the time named John Close.


More information gleaned from the book about Edwin and Emma:


This book helpfully reveals more connections between Adamthwaite vicars and schoolmasters in the listing of Rectors for the parish of Bowes (where the real life Edwin and Emma were buried in the same grave):


List of incumbents of Bowes Church:

1616  William Atkinson, curate

1667  Thomas Fawcett, rector

1674  Richard Wharton, curate

1692  Ralph Wren, curate

1694  John Pears, curate

1724  Joseph Taylor curate

1749    Isaac Cookson, curate (pro tempore)

1750  Thomas Bowman (appointed as successor to Mr Taylor)

1770  Joseph Parker

1795  Joseph Pearson (though it sounds from notes transcribed below as if Joseph Adamthwaite was acting Curate during Joseph Pearson’s period of office)

1810  Richard Wilson

1822  Johnson Lambert

Notes add the following information:


Mr Pearson was a native of Winton, near Kirkby Stephen and that the living was offered to Mr Joseph Adamthwaite, nephew of Mr Pearson, before he was in prienst’s orders and Mr Pearson held it form him, and it was never as it is believed, transferred to Mr Adamthwaite.  Mr Pearson never resided at Bowes, for some time after his appointment there was no regular curate, the neighbouring clergymen generationally officiating.  The first signature in the register, after the death of Mr Parker, is Mr Adamthwaite’s in June 1797.  Mr Adamthwaite was curate from 1797 to 1810.  Mr Pearson was vicar of Misterton and for thirty-seven years minister of West Stockwith, near Gainsborough.



Joseph Pearson was the brother of Mary Pearson who married Thomas Adamthwaite in 1774 in Kirkby Stephen – this couple are at the head of the TEAL line, as we have never managed to connect this Thomas (born about 1751 and described as ‘of Kirkby Stephe’ at his marriage) to any other line through written records … however, we do know from yDNA testing that he shared a common ancestor with the YELLOW line and the BLUE line.


Thomas and Mary ADAMTHWAITE had seven children, of whom three sons went on to become clerics:


Rev Joseph ADAMTHWAITE was Curate of Bowes and ran Academies in Bowes and then in Cotherstone

Rev John ADAMTHWAITE, DD ran the Academy at Winton

Rev William ADAMTHWAITE was Vicar of West Stockwith and also involved in his brothers’ academies from time to time according to advertisements in the Press.

So from the notes, we learn that both Rev Joseph and Rev William seem to have benefitted from their Uncle Joseph Pearson’s generosity in passing on livings!


It is also interesting to see Johnson Lambert on the list of incumbants.  He is connected to the LIGHT GREEN line of Adamthwaites – he was married to Jane Adamthwaite in 1831.  Jane was the daughter of John Adamthwaite and Margaret Hunter who married in Hurworth on Tees in 1803 – this couple also ran an Academy in Bowes, with wife Margaret keeping it on after John Adamthwaite’s death, but although on his memorial stone, this John Adamthwaite claimed to be ‘a native of Adamthwaite’, we have never managed to find any record of him prior to his marriage to Margaret Hunter.  The Adamthwaite/Hunter Academy definitely needs further investigation … an astonishing number of deaths of boys from this Academy are recorded in the Bowes parish registers!  There are also papers held at Durham Record Office concerning a number of legal cases involving Johnson Lambert which need investigating.  


Hopefully, I will get around to writing an article for the Miscellany Section on these members of the Light Green line at some point!


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