Missing from census due to being in prison

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A FAMILY history fan who thought his search into his North-East roots had “hit a brick wall” has found out an ancestor served time in jail.

Simon Myers appeared in Together Again earlier this month asking for any information on his great-grandfather, George Henry Myers, who was born in Hartlepool in 1857.

Simon mentioned how George’s wife Charlotte (nee Pigg) died while giving birth to the couple’s son William Walton Myers – Simon’s grandfather – in 1881.

George, a merchant seaman and pawnbroker, was remarried to Isabella Brown in 1885 and moved to Gateshead, where the couple were to have five more children – Mary, Isabel, Sarah, Henry and George.

Simon, a 63-year-old retired pharmaceutical company worker, said that on the same evening the article appeared, a Peter Cartwright from Hartlepool called him with information.

Simon, from Offerton, near Stockport in Cheshire, said Mr Cartwright has been researching his own family history for five years but as his ancestors lived on the same street as the Myers family he had a lot of information.

Simon, who is married to Jean and is dad to Lynette, 23, said: “It appears that my great-grandfather, George Henry Myers, was christened Henry Myers and his father was named George.

“I have had it the other way round – no wonder I was struggling!

“The reason why Henry Myers born 1857 was not on the Census in 1881 was he was in Parkhurst Prison on the Isle of Wight!

“Peter tells me that is where most seamen went to jail.

“In 1881, his wife Charlotte died giving birth to my grandfather whilst he was in prison – what a bad situation.

“Peter has supplied details going back to a Myers birth in 1725 at St Helens Durham, so I am well and truly back on the case again.

“Thanks for your help, it was a long shot which has certainly paid off – the power of the press.”

Mr Cartwright sent Simon information that showed the Myers family lived in Thomas Street, off Mainsforth Terrace, for 10 to 15 years.

He advised him that one of their offspring, called Mabel, could be found on the Census.

Mr Cartwright also provided details of George’s father, also called George and also a seaman, who was born in Ferryhill, County Durham, in 1833 and died in Hartlepool in 1909.

George married Mary Ann Christon in West Hartlepool in 1854 and had his first son, Robert, in the same year.

George’s father, also called George, was born in 1802 in Durham, married Ann Burlinson in 1823 and died in 1861 in Llanharry in Glamorgan, Wales.

His father was John Myers, born in 1779 in Ferryhill, who married Hannah Arrowsmith in 1801.

John’s father Robert was born in 1745 in St Helens, Durham, and was married twice – to Hannah Oliver in 1773 and to Elizabeth Brewis Brewhouse in 1775.

His father, also John, was born in 1725 in St Helen’s and married Elizabeth Hope in 1744.

Simon is continuing his search and anyone with further information can call him on (0161) 4838801 or email him on simon.myers5@btinternet.com