Ashbrook Family Tree
This page represents an on-going attempt to compile a logical sequence of descent for the Ashbrook family, my late grandmother being Annie Ashbrook who married John Joseph 'Jack' McGowan. Annie was born and spent almost all of her life in Knutsford, Cheshire, England. Jack was born in County Mayo in Ireland, and came to Knutsford with his parental family.
Some of the information on this page may be added to or corrected as more data comes to light over time. Anyone is welcome to leave relevant messages in the comments section below.
No mention of any living relative will be made to protect privacy.
This Hubpage continues from another, Four Branches, (see clickable link at the bottom of this page), which depicts the genealogy of my immediate family and how it flows from my parents to their parents - hence the four branches of our family history.
Thanks are due to my mother, Agnes Bray (nee McGowan), my aunt Mary McGowan, and distant cousin Carol Sanderson for some of the contents of this page, which comes from their efforts in researching our family tree.
To view any of these images in a larger scale, simply click on each image or use the slideshow facility.
Three Generations Named William Ashbrook
Certificates for Ann Jane Booth and William Ashbrook
Marriage Certificate of Frederick Rathbone and Fanny Pemberton
Birth Certificates of Sarah Rathbone and William Ashbrook
William and Sarah Ashbrook (nee Rathbone)
Wedding Certificate of William Ashbrook and Sarah Rathbone
Death Certificates for Sarah and William Ashbrook
Ashbrook Family Dates
This is a list of birth, marriage and death dates of the offspring of William and Sarah Ashbrook compiled from Agnes Bray's own notes.
Sarah - born 16.10.1905; married Fred Whittaker (date?); died 31.10.1987.
Annie - born 26.10.1906; married John Joseph McGowan 26.02.1927; died 08.08.1986; (my grandparents.)
William - born 26.10.1906 (twin of Annie); married (details?); 2nd wife Mollie Harrison.
Joseph - born 1904; died 1909.
James - born 20.01.1904(?); married Louise 1946; died 05.03.1989.
John 'Jack' - born ??.04.1917.
Frederick - born ??.04.1917 (twin of John); married Jessie (details?)
Agnes - born 25.12.1920; married George Wood; died ?
Note: The photo below shows James marrying Milly. Was this Louise's nickname, or did he marry twice?
My Grandmother's Sisters
Twins Annie and William Ashbrook's Birth Certificates
The Ashbrook Family
From Mary McGowan's own notes:
William Ashbrook and Sarah Rathbone were married on 26th December, 1904. William's father was also called William, as was his father before that.
Sarah's mother was called Fanny Pemberton (maiden name), and her father Frederick was a labourer at a brewery. I wonder which brewery, as I do not know of any in or around Northwich? Maybe it was Wilderspoons' at Warrington? (Adele: See note in the Comments section below.)
On Sarah's and William's marriage certificate, both fathers are described as labourers.
Of their children, Sarah was born first. On the 1911 Census she is a year older than my mother (Annie Ashbrook) and William. Mam came first at 12.15am and William at 1.30am. Man used to say, "My twin brother Billy". I recall a small uncle with only one eye; it was always watering. I think it was stitched together. Was that Charles or Billy?
When Annie was born, William is described as an "Alkali Labourer."
Joseph was born in 1909 and died in 1911. James was born in 1914 and lived with William and Sarah right up to the day they died, at East Avenue, Rudheath. John and Frederick were born in April 1917, John first at 10am, Fred at 1pm - at (house number withheld by Adele) James Street, Northwich. That same year, Sarah's father Frederick Rathbone died aged 67 at the Victoria Infirmary, Northwich, from a burst appendix and peritonitis. His address had been at (house number withheld by Adele) Faraday Road, Winnington.
Fanny died in 1932.
I think Agnes Ashbrook was the youngest of the girls, born 1918 I think. She married George H Wood in Northwich in 1940, and lived at Lostock Grahlam. She had two daughters.
Sarah, the first born, married Wilfred Whittaker at St Helens Church, Northwich, then went to live in Blackpool.
James Ashbrook, born 1914, married Millicent Eardley from Middlewich. She was tall and had long golden hair down to her waist, which she wore in plaits. He was 34 and she was 22. His job is given as "Transport Maintenance"; her job was a silk worker. They lived together at (house number withheld by Adele) East Avenue, Rudheath with William and Sarah Ashbrook. Aunty Milly, as we called her, died first and James died in Leighton Hospital, Crewe, in 1998, aged 84, from ischaemic heart disease and a stroke. They had one son.
I saw most of Uncle James and Aunty Milly, and Aunty Agnes and George Wood as a child. apart from that man with the blind eye, I saw no-one else in the Ashbrook family apart from Granny and Grandad - and little of them, me being the youngest in our family.
James and Milly Ashbrook (nee Eardley)
Marriage Certificate of John Joseph 'Jack' McGowan and Annie Ashbrook
The Holdings, Northwich.
The marriage certificate of Annie Ashbrook and John Joseph 'Jack' McGowan gives their address as The Holdings, Middlewich Road, Northwich.
Agnes Bray (nee McGowan) wrote: "There was a lot of land and extra buildings outside. The land was good and he (Jack, Agnes's father) cultivated it. He had hens and a large pigeon house. I remember oil lamps and an outside toilet; also, my mum telling me that farm labourers lodged in an outbuilding and got a main meal (served) from the back door.
"Once a week my gran would get a fire going under a large cauldron and the workmens' clothes were boiled. They went out in other clothes and slept and worked the next week in them until boiling day. One day my mum told me her twin brother Billy (William) was found in the doorway of the outbuilding and was striped of his clothes in the yard, was washed in the yard in the tin bath and his clothes boiled.
"As for (sounding) horrible, Gran did raise a large family there with no deaths; she had two sets of twins. My mother (Annie Ashbrook) was sent into service (when) aged 14, so perhaps the comparison between her home and the Hall where she 'lived in' - carpet vs. hand-pegged rugs, gas light vs. oil lamps, and an indoor toilet, etc., (made The Holdings seem horrible, as Annie always described it)."
Brett Langston, Research Consultant at the Cheshire Records Office wrote: "The Holdings was a farm complex on the north side of Middlewich Road, reached by a track behind the Farmer's Arms. It seems to have been built around 1890, and it survived until after World War Two before being subsumed into ICI's Lostock Works."
Map of The Holdings
- Four Branches
Adshead, Ashbrook, Bray and McGowan Family Tree. This is the story of four branches of my family....
© 2011 Adele Cosgrove-Bray