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My passion is genealogy and family history. I host a podcast about Australian family history, Genies Down Under. In my day job, I work as a lecturer and a researcher in higher education, teaching pre-service teachers.

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Saturday, 6 August 2016

Week 1 NFHM Challenge: Census discovery - My great grandfather left home and was working in Wales by the age of 14

Census records. Week 1 - Sunday 7 August - 9 August is Census Night in Australia.  What extraordinary things have you discovered about your ancestors in census records?

Based on the census records, I found out that one of my great-grandfathers, James KINGSBURY (1867-1945) had left home and was working as a Revit Assistant Boy by the time he was 14 years of age. He was born in the town of Ysceifiog, County Flint in Wales. This may not have been that extraordinary in James' day, but I can't imagine many 14 year olds, these days, going out on their own and earning their way while living in a boarding house. Maybe James didn't have a choice.

1871 Census

He appears as a 3 year old scholar in the UK 1871 Census. living at Ffirth in the town of Ysceifiog in County Flint with his parents, George and Mary KINGSBURY, his 1 year old sister, Bessie, and his 15 year old uncle, Job KINGSBURY.

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Source: Flintshire [Frefraith and Ysceifiog] District 17. Class: RG10; Piece: 5642; Folio: 73; Page: 4; GSU roll: 892479. Accessed via Ancestry.

Source: Google maps

Location information from the above Census:
  • Locations: Frefraith and Ysceifiog, Flintshire
  • Civil parish: Ysceifiog
  • Township: Frefraith
  • Ecclesiastical parish: Ysceifiog
  • County: Flintshire
  • Country: Wales
  • Registration district: Holywell
  • Sub-registration district: Holywell
  • ED, institution, or vessel: 17
  • Household schedule number: 25
  • Piece: 5642
  • Folio: 73
  • Page number: 4

Family information from the above Census extract:
  • George KINGSBURY, married, male, 27 years old, Gamekeeper, born in Whitechurch, County Dorset, UK
  • Mary KINGSBURY, married, female, 27 years old, Gamekeeper's wife, born in Whitechurch, County Dorset, UK
  • James KINGSBURY, son, male, 3 years old, scholar, born in Ysceifiog, County Flint, Wales
  • Bessie KINGSBURY, daughter, female, 1 year old, born in Ysceifiog, County Flint, Wales
  • Job KINGSBURY, brother, male 15 years old, Gamekeeper's assistant, born in Whitechurch, County Dorset, UK


Ten years later, in 1881, James was 14 years of age and was now living at 6 Benyon Row, Ystradyfodwg, Glamorgan. 

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Source: RG11; Piece: 5501; Folio: 89; Page: 5; GSU roll: 1342322, Enumeration District: 14. Accessed via Ancestry.
He was working as a Revit Assistant Boy and living as a Boarder with the following people, including three of the Morgan family and three other boarders:
  • Mary Morgan, Head, Widow, 54 year old House Keeper
  • Mary Anne Morgan, 18 year old daughter of Mary Morgan (Head of Household), Servant
  • Louisa Morgan, 11 year old daughter of Mary Morgan (Head of Household), Scholar
  • Frederick Payne, Unmarried male, Boarder, 25 years old, Boiler maker
  • John Malam, Married male, Boarder, 52 years old, Boiler maker
  • Alfred Malam, Unmarried male, Boarder, 19 years old, Boiler maker
  • James Kingsbury, Unmarried male, Boarder, 14 years old, Revit Assistant Boy
Information from the 1881 Census above:
  • Name: James Kinsberry [James Kingsbury] 
  • Age: 14
  • Estimated birth year: abt 1867
  • Relation: Boarder
  • Gender: Male
  • Where born: Ysceiriog, Flintshire, Wales
  • Civil Parish: Ystradyfodwg
  • County/Island: Glamorgan
  • Country: Wales
  • Street address: 6 Beynon Row
  • Education: View image
  • Employment status: View image
  • Occupation: Revit Assistant Boy
  • Registration district: Pontypridd
  • Sub registration district: Ystradyfodwg
  • ED, institution, or vessel: 2
  • Neighbors: View others on page
  • Piece: 5300
  • Folio: 49
  • Pages Number: 27-28

I have photos of some of the above-mentioned ancestors.

George KINGSBURY (1843 to 1910)

Mary KINGSBURY, nee HOLLOWAY (1844 to 1936)

James KINGSBURY (1867 to 1945)

Some time in the 1880s, James boarded a boat, bound for Australia where he lived the remainder of his days, until his death on 19 June 1945 at 64 Ponyara Road, Beverly Hills (a suburb in Sydney).

Thanks to Alex  Daw for setting up this National Family History Month Blogging Challenge.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Maria - well of course I am dying to know what a Revit Assistant was? Do you have any idea? Thanks for participating in the Challenge. I hope you are enjoying the challenge as much as I am.