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We are related to Dr. Barnardo

When I started gathering information for my husband’s family tree, concrete facts were hard to come by but, as in most families, there were quite a few anecdotes… and one of these was, “You know, we are related to Dr. Barnardo.”  

James Newton (1811-1878) married Jane Newton (1812 -1854) in 1834. They were first cousins and came from the Stalybridge area in Cheshire, although James and Jane married at St Saviour, Southwark, London, by special licence.

James carried on his father’s firebrick business at Bankside in Southwark, and they had ten children, three of whom feature in this article:- Joseph, James William, William Henry, James William, Emma Jane, Mary Jane, Harriet Anne, Edward Buckley, Fanny Augusta and George Herbert.

I made steady progress with the tree, more or less from scratch, purchasing all the relevant certificates of my husband’s direct ancestors. After a while, I started investigating the numerous siblings, aunts, uncles and other connections, usually in the hope of finding some elusive family member not easily traceable on the censuses. I discovered my husband’s great grandfather, George Herbert Newton, who was the youngest of the ten children, and his older siblings led me a merry dance, as several of them disappeared from sight. Harriet Anne was the seventh child and I found her easily in four censuses, from 1851 to 1881. In the 1881 census she was still unmarried and was living as a boarder in a house in Penge, London, close to some of her family. However, I found a ‘Bernardo connection’, when on 19th March 1885 she married merchant, Bernard Charles Ernest Bernardo in Hampstead Parish Church, London.

Having discovered their marriage, I found Bernard and Harriet together on the 1891 and 1901 censuses, where they were living at 242 Christchurch Road, Boscombe, Bournemouth, Dorset, and visiting the family of a William H Holden in Folkestone, Kent, respectively. Bernard Bernardo died in the Billericay district in September quarter 1904, aged 70, which gave me his approximate year of birth to be 1835.  I then found widowed Harriet on the 1911 census living in Bournemouth, but she died in the December quarter of that year. For a while I thought that I had discovered the extent of the ‘Barnardo connection’ through the Newtons, although at this time I knew little about the Barnardo family from Dublin… until I discovered further Irish connections!

Edward Buckley was the eighth child of James and Jane Newton, and I found him on the 1881 census with an occupation described as ‘income from houses’ living at 33 Selby Road, Penge, Surrey, with an Irish-born wife called Sophie, although I could not locate a marriage for them.

When we located the grave of my husband’s great grandfather, George Newton, in Beckenham Cemetery, Kent, the cemetery records also showed a grave for his brother Edward Buckley and two of his children, about whom we knew nothing. From the plan produced by the cemetery, we discovered the grave in brambles and bushes. It was a sad sight, with the headstone lying on the ground and only partially legible.

Edward’s young wife disappeared from view and I correctly assumed that she had returned to Ireland. Later on, as more Irish records appeared on line, I found a marriage of an Edward Buckley Newton and a Sophie Elizabeth Fullwood in Cork, Ireland, in early 1879.

This marriage was highly interesting, as the other Newton sibling involved in this account was Fanny Augusta, the ninth child of James and Jane Newton. Fanny married a James Fullwood in Burwash, Sussex, in 1876. Could Sophie Fullwood and James Fullwood be related?

herts cert
The marriage of William Fullwood and Abigail Amalia Barnardo on 18th August 1853.

In 1881, Fanny featured on the census with her son, also called James, staying with her brother James at 5 Canning Road, Croydon, Surrey. In fact, she is recorded as Fanny A Newton, when she should be Fanny A Fullwood. The clue here is that her son James was actually born in Dublin.

Fanny Augusta Newton/Fullwood is not found on any further English censuses, and for a while I found no further trace of her. However, as the Irish censuses appeared on line, I found her in 1901 and 1911 living with her husband and family near Dublin. I was very pleased as I found my husband’s grandfather, Percy Gerald Newton, and his sister, Rose Elsie, staying with their aunt Fanny in 1901. Percy trained as an architect in Dublin.

Once more Irish records came on line, I discovered what happened to Sophie Newton. She remarried to a William Crawford Ryder in Cork in June quarter 1893. In 1901 and 1911 they were living in Ireland. The 1911 census shows her mother and sister living with her, and the 1901 records three of her Newton children with her, and it was the first time I had heard of the existence of the youngest, Arthur D F Newton, who was probably born after the death of his father Edward.

And once again, as new Irish records appeared on line, I managed to tie up the families quite nicely and finally make that elusive ‘Barnardo connection’…

John Michaelis Barnardo was an immigrant from Germany who set up a furrier’s business in Dublin. His first wife was Elizabeth O’Brien whom he married on 1st January 1827. It appears that they had seven children, one of whom was Abigail Amalia Barnardo, who married a William Fullwood, and one of their children was Sophie Elizabeth, who married Edward Buckley Newton.

Another of John Michaelis Barnardo’s children with Elizabeth was Charles Barnardo, who was christened Charles Michaelis Barnardo, but later called himself Bernard Charles E Bernardo. This addition of names seems to have been fairly common with the Barnardo children. Charles became a merchant and married Harriet Anne Newton in 1885 in Hampstead. Harriet was the sister of Edward Buckley Newton.

Elizabeth Barnardo sadly died in 1836, and John Barnardo reputedly went to London to marry her sister, Abigail Amelia, the following year. I have not yet located the marriage record, but it allegedly took place at the German Church. It is worth noting that John and Elizabeth Barnardo had named one of their daughters Abigail Amalia after her aunt. This was Sophie Fullwood’s mother.

John and Abigail Barnardo had several children, one of whom was Thomas John Barnardo (born 4th July 1845), later to be more commonly known as ‘Dr. Barnardo’. So finally I had proved, in a roundabout way, that the Newton family were indeed remotely related to the Barnardo family, although the link with Dr. Barnardo was very slight, and I doubt that any of them actually met him!

Finally, with respect to the Fullwoods, James Fullwood and Sophie Elizabeth Fullwood were indeed related. James Fullwood was Sophie’s uncle, so Fanny Augusta Fullwood, née Newton, was Sophie’s aunt by marriage and also her sister-in-law.

Elizabeth Herts

© Elizabeth Herts 2010

The Barnardo Family Tree

Newton Barnardo Connections


Irish Genealogy: Church Records


Census records for Ireland 1901 and 1911