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  1. #1

    Red face Wrigley's of Woolden Mill Mystery

    I have a mystery regarding the parentage of a number of children who lived at Woolden Mill or Great Woolden Hall, Barton Upon Irwell, Lancashire. The area is also sometimes known as Glazebrook, Cadishead or Chat Moss.

    My direct link is Peter Wrigley who was born 1839. He married Amelia Barker at Eccles Parish St Mary's in 1861. The Birth/Christening records on FamilySearch linking to the Wrigley or Rigley family are usually at Hollinfare, Cadishead or Eccles. I can easily link the generations coming forwards and the probable grandparents, but the in between generation is proving to be somwhat troublesome.

    My main area of interest are the people shown on the 1841 Census at Cadishead, Woolden, Great, Eccles, Barton Upon Irwell.
    This shows Charles Wrigley c1781 aged 60 as the head
    Charles Wrigley c 1801 aged 40
    George Wrigley 1829 aged 21
    William Wrigley 1831 aged 20
    Peter Wrigley 1839 aged 11
    Ann Wrigley 1806
    Hannah Wrigley 1811
    Margaret Wrigley 1816

    The birth years vary from one census to the next and I definitely feel that the 2 Charles birth years are not entirely accurate. From my research I have linked the 3 boys to the 3 women.
    George 1829 - Mother Hannah 1811
    William 1831 - Mother Ann 1806
    Peter 1839 - Mother Margaret 1816

    On the 1851 Census Thomas Sumner b 1826 aged 25 also appears

    I have found these records on FamilySearch and I'm pretty convinced that they are correct though the Mothers' birth years are probably similar rather than exact. The thing that is really strange is that none of the boys have father's listed.

    After the death of the older Charles Wrigley, Charles junior (unmarried) became head and the ladies were listed as his sisters with the boys as his nephews.

    It seems that a lot of people have struggled as there is some confusion regarding the link between Charles and Ann. On a number of personal family trees on A...try Charles and Ann are presumed to be the parents of the boys but the years are mis-matched. From a LOT of digging I think I have found the wife of Charles senior, but not Charles junior so far. I have also found probable marriages for the women but not before the boys were born.

    At this stage I'd rather not throw in the extra surnames just to see if I have been on the right track. If it helps I will gladly put them up later.

    Any help would be very gratefully received as would any info or even photo's of Woolden Mill. One thing I do know about the Mill is that it caught fire on the night of Sunday Sept 15th 1895. At this time William Wrigley aged 45 was the miller, but was actually living at Great Woolden Hall with Joseph Johnson aged 65 and Hannah Taylor aged 64 as his lodgers, so luckily they were not injured in the fire.

  2. #2


    Hello Libbydibs,

    As no father is named at the three boys christenings' it suggests they were illegitimate births.

    Do you have Peter's birth certificate and marriage certificate?

    You say you haven't found the wife of Charles jnr so far; the census returns suggest he didn't marry.

    1861, all born Cadishead; living: Chapel Lane, Barton upon Irwell. RG9; Piece: 2864; Folio: 92; Page: 4 (Crown copyright, in care of TNA)

    Charles Wigley 60, head, unmarried, Miller
    Ann Wigley 55, sister, unmarried, Housekeeper
    Hannah Johnson 53, sister, married, Ag. Labourer
    George Wigley 31, nephew, unmarried, Ag Labourer
    William Wigley 30, nephew, unmarried, Miller
    Peter Wigley 23, nephew, unmarried, Ag Labourer.

    1871, Barton Upon Irwell, RG10; Piece: 3970; Folio: 111; Page: 17

    Charles Wrigley 69, head, unmarried, Corn Miller
    Ann Wrigley 65, sister, unmarried,
    William Wrigley 40, nephew, unmarried, Game Keeper

    A Charles Wrigley death: age at death 76, Jan - Mar 1875, Barton Upon Irwell, 8c/465

  3. #3


    1871, Liverpool Rd, Barton upon Irwell, RG10; Piece: 3970; Folio: 93; Page: 2 (Crown copyright in care of TNA)

    George Wrigley 39, Ag Lab, Cad
    Elizabeth Wrigley 37, Irlam
    Eliza Wrigley 14, Cadishead
    Joseph Wrigley 7, Cad
    James Wrigley 4, Cad
    Mary H Wrigley 2, Cad
    George Wm Wrigley 2 Months, Cad

    Peter and Amelia are living next door but one with children John 9, George 7, Charles 5, Joseph 1, and Eliza Barker (sister) 21

    Living between the two Wrigley families is Mary Valentine 72, dau Sarah Ann 39, and grandson Robert 19.

    Marriages Sept 1863, George Wrigley also indexed Elizabeth Valentine, Barton, 8c/516

  4. #4


    1881, Liverpool Road, Barton, RG11; Piece: 3884; Folio: 70; Page: 45 (Crown copyright in care of TNA)

    George Wrigley 48
    Elizabeth Wrigley 47
    Joseph Wrigley 17
    James Wrigley 14
    Mary H. Wrigley 12
    George W. Wrigley 10
    Robert Valentine 29, boarder.

    1861, Manchester Road, Barton, RG9; Piece: 2864; Folio: 71; Page: 3 (Crown copyright, in care of TNA)

    Mary Valentine 57, head
    Sarah Ann Valentine 28, dau
    Elizabeth Valentine 25, dau
    Robert Valentine 9, grandson
    Eliza Anne Valentine 4, granddau (maybe?? Eliza age 14 in 1871 census)

  5. #5


    Googling "Woolden Hall" brings up quite a few hits.

  6. #6


    Christenings, Holinfare

    Charles Wrigley, 1/5/1796, parents Charles and Sally
    Elizabeth Wrigley, 1/4/1798, parents Charles and Sarah
    Ann Wrigley, 20/7/1800, Parents Charles and Sarah
    Mary Wrigley, 19/7/1807, parents Charles and Sarah
    Margaret Wrigley, 28/4/1805, parents Charles and Sarah
    Margaret Wrigley, 22/4/1810, parents Charles and Sarah
    Martha Wrigley, 5/4/1812, parents Charles and Sarah

  7. #7


    From igi

    Charles Rigley [sic] married Sarah Siddall, 10th Sept 1795, at Winwick Lancs.

  8. #8


    Hi Lizzy, thanks for your replies.

    It looks like I was on the right track as all those census returns match what I already had. I found details for Joseph Wrigley b1816 and by looking up and down the years for his census records clarified a few more bits. Sarah Siddall was the main reason for the cryptic lead up without surnames cos I only just found her. It looks as though she is the mother but not all of the names appear in the list of children for her and Charles senior so that was why I was a bit sceptical at first. It does seem that having illegitimate children was pretty standard for the generation who lived at the mill in 1841. I don't have Peter's birth certificate but I have a feeling that my aunt may have ordered it a few years ago. She contacted one of the record offices and was told that she would have to apply for a certificate of bastardy. The wording sounds particularly unpleasant, although nowadays unmarried parents are commonplace. Do you know anything about this kind of certificate ? Would it give the father's name or do you know of any other way to identify the father of an illegitimate child ?
    Last edited by Libbydibs; 24-01-2012 at 9:42 PM. Reason: Info added

  9. #9


    I hadn't seen the census records for George but it does clarify the link between the Valentines and the Wrigley's. I had a gut feeling there was a link as they always seemed to be nearby over the years. I have read a lot about Great Woolden Hall and actually went there a couple of months ago. I finished up chatting to the current owners for about half an hour. It seems that the Taylors who owned the hall for a number of years were linked by marriage to the Wrigley's too. After looking at family tree details on A....try it shows how important it is to confirm details and sources. I've seen Charles senior incorrectly linked as husband to Ann Wrigley on at least 3 trees. The ages are a mismatch which made me more convinced than ever that the details were wrong, but unfortunately when they are on multiple tree details the chances of people taking it as being correct are increased

  10. #10


    Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser

    June 11, 1840
    On the 8th inst, at All Souls, Barton-upon-Irwell, Mr Joseph Wrigley, of Cadishead, to Mary Ann, second daughter of Mr John Sutcliffe, of Swinton
    (the '61 Census has Joseph + Mary Ann?)

    March 9, 1869
    Mar 8th, in his 53rd year, Joseph Wrigley of Osborne Terrace, Patricroft, youngest son of the late Charles Wrigley, Woolden Corn Mills, Lancashirei

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