Sunday, 13 May 2012

Thomas Ivall (1837-1908), baker in Chalvey

Thomas Ivall was the eldest son of Robert Thomas Ivall (1812-65), who was the only brother of David Ivall (1816-67), my great great great grandfather. This profile contains information from research done by Dennis Endean Ivall.

Thomas was born on 6 August 1837 in High Wycombe and baptized in All Saints Church, High Wycombe on 3 September 1837. He was the eldest of eight children (4 boys and 4 girls) born to Robert Thomas Ivall and his wife Harriet nee Owen. Robert had a coach making business (which failed) and lived in High Wycombe until about 1849.

In October 1848, Thomas, then aged 11, was apprenticed to H Hunt for a term of 5 years to learn the trade of needle and fishing tackle maker. Robert, Thomas’s father, paid a premium of five pounds to Mr Hunt, who agreed to provide Thomas with necessary food, clothing, lodging and washing. Thomas moved to Redditch in Worcestershire for the apprenticeship.

The 1851 census shows Thomas (aged 13, an apprentice fishing tackle maker) living at Hill Street, Redditch at the house of Henry Hunt (33, a fishing tackle maker) with his wife Hannah (45), daughter Elizabeth (13) and another apprentice William Knight (15).

In 1861, Thomas, aged 23, was working as a baker at Hillingdon House, Middlesex. He was one of about 30 servants in the household headed by Richard Henry Cox, aged 81, an army agent.

By 1864, Thomas was working at Bretby Hall, Burton on Trent, the country seat of the Earl of Chesterfield. I have a copy of a letter written by a solicitor to Thomas at Bretby Hall, regarding the estate of his grandfather Thomas Ivall (1781-1835). The residue of the estate (£1800) had been invested to provide an income for his widow Jane, with instructions to divide it between his three children (or their offspring if dead) on her death. Jane died in 1866. Robert (Thomas’s father) had died in 1865. The letter says “in my opinion you are entitled to a share of his share notwithstanding that your father received and spent his share in his lifetime.” Thomas’s share was about £60 (about £2,700 in modern day terms). In 1866 he successfully brought a case against David Ivall (his uncle) at the Court of Chancery to get this share.

Thomas’s father was the Bucks and Middlesex District Secretary of the Ancient Order of Foresters. This was a Friendly Society whose members paid a few pence a week into a common fund from which sick pay and funeral grants could be drawn. The members of local branches (known as courts) also met and socialised. The newspaper extract below describes a dinner held in 1864 by the Slough branch. Thomas chaired the occasion and proposed various toasts.
From Windsor and Eton Express 23 July 1864

Thomas later became a trustee of the local branch of the Ancient Order of Foresters.

In 1867, Thomas married Lucy Hobden (born 1845 in Ashburnham, Sussex) in St George’s Church, Hanover Square, London. He was 30 and she 22. Thomas had met Lucy in London, where she was on the staff of Lord Ashburnham at his London residence (she was normally at Ashburnham House in Sussex). Lucy is distantly related to the Australian cricketer Sir Donald Bradman (1908-2001) via her mother Mary Furner (1816-1878).
Marriage record of Thomas Ivall

Clara Hobden Ivall was born during April 1867 in the registration district of Battle in Sussex and died aged 17 weeks in August that year. She was buried in St James, Ashburnham on 16 Aug 1867. She was a child of Thomas and Lucy Ivall, who married on 2 March 1867. It was not unusual at this time for women to be pregnant when they married. Thomas and Lucy went on to have 15 other children namely Walter George (1868-1953), Robert Thomas (1870-1), Ellen Maud (1872-81), Annie Lucy (1874-1949), Harry Alfred (1975-1901), Catherine Dora (1877-1963), Percy Bertram (1879-1971), Reginald John (1881-1966), Charles Oliver (1883-1954), Margaret Olive (1883-1976), Gilbert Edward (1884-1914), Jane Evelyn (1886-1971), Geoffrey Ernest (1888-88), David Philip Stanhope (1890-1950) and Gerald (1892-1983). The children were born in Chalvey, a village which is now a district of Slough in Buckinghamshire. Twelve of the children survived into adulthood. Lucy was aged 47 when her final child was born. Confusingly, many of the children were known by other names. For instance, Charles Oliver was known as Joseph !

Thomas ran a bakery in Chalvey. The 1871 census shows Thomas Ivall (aged 33, a master baker), his wife Lucy (24) and their children Walter George (2) and Robert Thomas (7 months) living at 6 Jordan Place, Upton Cum Chalvey. Jordan Place (which no longer exists) was a terrace of houses on Church Street, Chalvey about 150 yards NW of St Peter’s Church.

By 1881 Thomas Ivall aged 44, a master baker, was living at Jordan Place Baker’s Shop, Upton Cum Chalvey with his wife Lucy (34) and their children Walter George (12), Annie Lucy (7), Harry Alfred (5), Catherine Dora (3), Percy Bertram (1) and Reginald (2 months). Also living there was Eliza Hobden (27, a nurse), Lucy’s sister.

The 1883 and 1899 editions of Kelly’s Directory of Buckinghamshire have entries for Thomas Ivall, Baker, Church St, Chalvey. The Bucks Herald reported in 1886 that Thomas was one of four parish constables appointed for Chalvey. 

Thomas Ivall of Church St, Chalvey is listed in the 1890 Electoral Register for the Slough Parliamentary Polling District of the Southern or Wycombe Division of Buckinghamshire. The 1884 Reform Act extended the vote for those who lived outside urban boroughs. Men over the age of 21 who held property worth £10 a year or who paid £10 a year in rent were given the vote. It is thought that this extended the electorate from about 40% to about 60% of the adult male population.

The Slough, Eton and Windsor Observer records that Thomas was the foreman of the jury at local inquests in January and March 1890, both into the death of children.

In 1891, the family consisted of Thomas (53, a baker), Lucy (43), Walter (22, an assistant schoolmaster), Annie (17), Harry (15, a baker), Catherine (13), Percy (11), Reginald (10), Charles (8), Margaret (8), Gilbert (6), Jane (4) and David (0.75). Their address was 6 Jordan Place, Church St, Chalvey.

Thomas’s son, Harry Alfred Ivall joined the London police in 1899 and was based in Southwark. He died of blood poisoning at St Thomas’ Hospital, Lambeth in 1901, aged 25 and was buried in St Mary’s churchyard, Slough.

By 1901, Thomas, aged 63, a retired baker was living at 39 The Crescent, Chalvey, Slough. Also in the household were his wife Lucy (52) and their children (Catherine) Dora (23, a milliner), Charles (18, a baker), Margaret (18), Gilbert (15), Jane (14), David (10) and Gerald (8). The house is still there. Electoral registers for 1904 to 1907 show Thomas's address as 23 Chalvey Road, Slough.
St Mary's Church, Chalvey

Thomas died 11 March 1908 in Chalvey aged 71. He was buried in St Mary’s churchyard, Slough on 16 March 1908 in the same plot (row 18, sections A/D) as his son Harry. The parish burial record gives Thomas’s address as 87 Chalvey Rd. His wife Lucy lived until 1929 when she died aged 84. She was buried in the same grave. St Mary’s churchyard was tidied up in 1980 when many gravestones were removed. I have not been able to find the Ivall gravestone. Slough Local Studies Collection has a list of the monumental inscriptions for the graves (including the Ivall plot) that were in the churchyard.

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