William Richards (1763 to 1808) (part two)

"William the Blacksmith"

William Richards married Sarah Merriman (bapt. 21 May 1770) on the 14 April 1789 at Radford St. Peters Church.

The following children have so far been traced to this marriage.

1.  Edward Richards bapt. 7 March 1790 at Greasley Parish Church.  died 28 August 1866 and buried Christchurch, New Radford on 30 August 1866.
(Ref. page 95, entry 753. Grave no. 59, CS. details from Christchurch burial register).

Edward is henceforth given the nick name "Edward - the Chelsea Pensioner".

2.  William Richards bapt. 25 April 1791 at Radford St. Peters Parish Church.  This is proof the family were then living in Radford.

3.  John Richards bapt. 27 April 1793 at Radford St. Peters Parish Church.  died an infant and buried 3 April 1796 at Radford St. Peters.

4.  Samuel Richards bapt. 20 Sept. 1795 at Radford St. Peters Parish Church.  died / buried 3 April 1796 at Radford St. Peters P.C.

5.  Samuel Merriman Richards bapt. 25 December 1799 at Radford St. Peters P.C.
(Ref.14331). died ????   buried Ripley Cemetery.

6.  Sarah Richards bapt. 5 February 1803 at Radford St. Peters Parish Church.

7.  Mary Richards bapt. 15 September 1805 at Radford St. Peters Parish Church.  buried 8 November 1819 aged 15 years at Radford St. Peters.

8.  Mathew Richards bapt. 14 February 1808 at Radford St. Peters Parish Church.  died ?  buried 20 April 1870 at Brinsley Parish Church.

William Richards, the Blacksmith was buried on the 29 May 1808 ar Radford St. Peter's Parish Church, Nottingham.  No age recorded.

At this stage it is pertinent to point out that there is a certain similarity in the christian names of the children of William and Sarah Richards and those of his parents, Mathew and Mary Richards nee Sore. viz, William, Samuel, Mathew and John.

There is no doubt in my mind that William and Sarah Richards formerly Merriman named their children after their relatives :

Sarah was chosen after her mother, Edward was chosen after his grandfather,that is to say, Edward Merriman, who was Sarah's father, and no doubt Mary was chosen after the mother of Mary, William and Sarah.

Edward after Sarah's father - grandfather Merriman.
William after William himself.
John after William's brother.
Samuel after William's brother.
Sarah after Sarah herself.
Mary after both Grandmothers.
Mathew after Grandfather Richards.

Once again William and Sarah Richards nee Merriman's young family names surely connect us to Mathew and Mary Richards nee Sore's line.

Research has revealed that Sarah Merriman was part of the family now briefly discussed but who are the subject of my further research entitled "William Richards and the Merriman connection".

To date the following children have been traced to the marriage of Edward and Mary Merriman formerly Holmes.  these children are of course Sarah's brothers and sisters.

1 Edward Merriman bapt.04-08-1752. Radford St. Peters. died an infant.
2 Richard Merriman bapt,01-07-1755. Radford St. Peters.
3 Elizabeth Merriman bapt.11-04-1757.Radford St. Peters.
4 Mary Merriman bapt.20-04-1759. Radford St. Peters.
5 Edward Merriman bapt.28-12-1761.Radford St. Peters.
6 William Merriman bapt.08-07-1766.Radford St. Peters.
7 Sarah Merriman bapt. 21-05-1770. Radford St. Peters.
8 Ann Merriman bapt.24-05-1774.Radford St. Peters.

There is evidence in the relevant Parish register that Sarah Richards nee Merriman bapt. 21 May 1770 was buried at Radford St. Peters Church on the 23 August 1818, aged 47 years.

A great amount of research has been carried out to positively identify William Richards - the Blacksmith who married Sarah Merriman.

There is a burial of a William Richards at Old Radford St. Peters Church on the 29 May 1808. No age has been recorded either in the Parish Register or on the Bishops Transcripts.  Undoubtedly this is William Richards - the Blacksmith.

The person recording this death viz. vicar or clerk has recorded a - - which gives the impression it is ditto as the entry above, but on closer inspection of the entries it shows this is not true and it is safe to regard the entry as Age Not Known.

Therefore the evidence in the Radford burial records is inconclusive and we may never know the real age of William Richards at his death.

What evidence is available which might reveal his true identity ? Clearly he was living with his wife Sarah Richards nee Merriman and some of their children in Radford in 1808.  One of their children Mathew Richards was baptised on the 14 February 1808 at Radford St. Peters Parish Church.  Another son Edward Richards bapt. 7 March 1790, was in the Army.

There is evidence from the Poor Law Records that on the 26 February 1808, a William Richards received 2..1s..0d. for Ironwork from Radford Parish Overseers, this surely verifies him being a Blacksmith.

The Poor Law Records for Radford for 1784 to 1822 have been checked and the following information has been revealed.

1784. This was the year that William Richards went from Radford to Greasley armed with his Radford Settlement Certificate.  there is no mention of William Richards but the accounts showed payment to Thomas Roughton, Blacksmith of Radford.

The Radford St. Peters Parish Overseers Accounts have been trawled from 1784 to research further the Richards family.  This research has been time consuming but has been evidentially very successful.

The Poor Law Records and the extracts contained herein have once again been studied and yet another positive clue has been discovered.

It appears that the payment for an Adult is between 1/6d. and 2/-d. per week.  Mary Richards receives her First Payment from Stapleford on the 17th. June 1808.  the amount is Six Shillings. If she was entitled to Two shillings per week for Three weeks, then this takes us back to the 3. June 1808, which coincides with the date of Sarah's payment from Greasley, which she did not receive until the 10th. June 1808, Back-Dated.

Therefore this is positive evidence that Mary Richards came to live with Sarah Richards nee Merriman immediately after the funeral of her son William Richards the Blacksmith.  She may well have been there prior to his death just helping out temporary.  Thus we have very strong evidence that Mary Richards was there with Sarah from the 3 June 1808.  It is a 100% guarantee.

The body in Radford Churchyard is definitely Sarah's husband.  He just had to be buried in Radford in 1808, the Reduced Payment is the positive proof and the 100% guarantee that we have to claim him. the evidence is overwhelming.!

The "Mother's lying in" at the end of the 1809 Overseers Account Book.  This amount of 2.1s.0d. came from Stapleford.  there is no one else in this (1809) year's Account Book receiving Relief from Stapleford.  This amount is an absolute certainty to be FOR the Richards.  It comes immediately after the total amount for the Richards FROM Stapleford.  the record then starts with another 'Out Parish' amount.  If the amount came from Stapleford, it should relate to Mary Richards rather than Sarah Richards, the reasoning being the Settlement Certificate issued to her husband and herself in 1762.  This then provides the relationship, she is a Mother.

However these facts are not without queries. Why are BOTH Parishes involved with the two of them.?  Another query is about the "Mother Lying In".  the payment was received from Stapleford during 1809.  The term was mainly used to denote Pregnancy but it also referred to Illness. Was Sarah pregnant?  I do not think so. Certainly we have found no evidence of her giving birth afterwards.  Although we may never know for certain why the money was being paid, there is no doubt in my mind that it was being paid for Mary Richards, the mother of William Richards the Blacksmith, whilst she was helping out at her daughter in laws home.  Perhaps Sarah Richards was sick at that time.

There are still outstanding queries to be answered concerning William Richards the Blacksmith.  He has to be followed backwards in time from 1808 to 1763 in Strelley.  Had he been married before he married Sarah Merriman?  His distinguishing mark "XR" will provide evidence if so.

William Richards (1763 to 1808) (part two)

"William the Blacksmith"


Email: ronstan@Richardsbygonetimes.co.uk

Home Page: http://www.Richardsbygonetimes.co.uk/

Created 2 December 2001
Last updated: 19 August 2010