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This post is about the children of Thomas Rowsell (b.1772, died between 1836-1851) and Frances Hall (1786-1871), who were the fourth generation of the Rowsells of Lambeth. I already wrote about Thomas’s son (Thomas Spooner Rowsell) from his previous marriage to Eleonora Catherine Grainger (1775–1814) in my last post.

Thomas and Frances had 5 children :

  • Nicholas Henry Rowsell (1817-1860) who married Mary Ann Bishop (b.1823)
  • Frances Rowsell (b.1819) who was married to Thomas Huggins
  • Benjamin Rowsell (1820-1886)  whose wife was named Sarah Norman
  • Angela Mary Rowsell (1823-1871)
  • Edward Pugh Rowsell (1827-1878) who married Amelia Gordon

The eldest son Nicholas Henry Rowsell followed the family’s legal tradition and became a solicitor. His solicitor’s firm was situated at the Verulam Buildings of Gray’s Inn Road, in London. He and his wife Mary Ann Bishop resided on Foxley Road, North Brixton up until 1860 when Nicholas died, aged just 33. They had three sons and one daughter. Their second son was John Rowsell (1853-1914) who was born on the 4th of January in Kennington, Surrey (now South London). John was baptised one week later at St Mark’s Church in Kennington.

John went to study at Cambridge and became a priest. Canon Rowsell was rector of Beccles in Suffolk from 1882-1910. You can learn all about his life and work on the Relics of Beccles blog.

In the year after Nicholas’ death there was a legal dispute between his Mother and his brother Benjamin regarding his estate but I do not know who won.

nicolas henry rowsell death case

Frances and Thos’ second child was Frances Rowsell (b.1819) whose husband was Thomas Huggins of Swanscombe, Kent. They were married on 12th October 1843 in St Mark’s of Hadlow Down, Sussex which was built by her uncle Benjamin Hall (d.1847) of Buxted lodge. There was a solicitors firm on Threadneedle street called Huggins and Rowsell so perhaps the families were connected before hand?

frances rowsell marriage

The third child was Benjamin Rowsell (1820-1886), who was named after his wealthy uncle of Sussex and was baptised on 11th March 1825 at Christ Church in Southwark. He married Sarah Norman (1821-1903) of Lambeth in October 1854 in Lambeth. They had 7 children, all of whom I will write about in a future post, particularly their eldest, Norman Rowsell (1855-1919) who moved to Ceylon and became a planter.

Threadneedle Street 1900

In 1855 Ben and Sarah were living in the Brixton area. They seemed to stay around Lambeth as their first 5 children were born over the course of 6 years (1855-61) and in the 1861 census they are recorded as living in Lambeth, when Benjamin was working as a stock broker. By 1865 they had moved further out to Clapham. Later sources show them in Croydon and Benjamin’s will of 1886 records that he was formerly working as a stockbroker at no. 1 Threadneedle Street in the city but had more recently been living in Lee, Kent.

electoral register ben rowsell

Electoral register of 1865

electoral register ben rowsell 2

Electoral Register 1869

benjamin rowsell WILL 1886

Benjamin Rowsell’s will

One electoral register lists Benjamin Rowsell and many of his relatives in the skinners section even though most of them were working as lawyers. This is because the men of Rowsell family had been admitted freedom of the city among the Company of Skinners. Benjamin was granted freedom of the City in the Company of Skinners in 1844 but it is unlikely he ever actually worked as a skinner.

Rowsells listed after skinners in London Electoral Registers

Rowsells listed as skinners in London Electoral Registers

On both Benjamin’s and his sister Angela’s birth certificates, their father Thomas’ job is listed as “solicitor” but Thomas was also a member of the Company of Skinners.

Births of Ben Rowsell and Angela Mary Rowsell

Births of Ben Rowsell and Angela Mary Rowsell

Benjamin and Sarah were both buried in West Norwood Cemetery half way down the hill from Benjamin’s uncle Samuel Rowsell‘s grave and those of his cousins and other Rowsells. Unfortunately their grave was neglected and was therefore difficult for me to locate, but after a bit of heavy gardening I managed to find it. See the following video.

Benjamin and Sarah Rowsell's grave inscription at West Norwood Cemetery.

Benjamin and Sarah Rowsell’s grave inscription at West Norwood Cemetery.

The Headstone of the grave in which Benjamin, Sarah and 5 of their 7 children are buried

The Headstone of the grave in which Benjamin, Sarah and 5 of their 7 children are buried

Thos’ and Frances’ fourth child was Angela Mary Rowsell (1823-1871) who was born in Kennington on 10th September. She lived with her parents for her whole life and died a widow at 48 years old.

Their fifth child was Edward Pugh Rowsell (1827-1878) who was named after his grandmother Eleanor Pugh (1748-1833). He was still living with his parents in 1871 when he was 44 but moved out soon after and married Amelia Gordon around 1873. They has a son named Alexander Gordon Rowsell in 1874. Edward died on 23rd May 4 years later.

If you have any information concerning these people, then please contact me.

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