|And when did you last see your father? - by William Frederick Yeames|
Here is a copy of Bastardy Orders issued in the small village of Haworth in Yorkshire, which covered only an eight year period in the Oxenhope area, between 1812-1820, showing the size of the problem, particularly when you bear in mind that this only refers to cases where the man was found!....there must have been many more cases where the father could not be proved, or where he just disappeared. Two third's of the way down the list is one Timothy Bancroft from Haworth, the man who the courts decided was the father of Susey Feather's illigitimate child.
|Haworth Bastardy Orders|
|Timothy's baptism 17th Dec 1790|
|Timothy & Hannah's marriage|
|Susey Feather's Bastardy record|
|Betty Feather's baptism|
|Sarah Feather's baptism|
And it gets even more interesting because next door on the 1841 census lives Susie’s ‘Feather’ family relations, and then next door again is Timothy & Susie’s illegitimate daughter Betty living there, now using the ‘Bancroft’ name, with two Bancroft children, Mary age 10 years and John age 5 years, which most probably are her illegitimate children
Timothy died on 7th February 1858 at his home in Uppertown, Oxenhope, and was buried in the village graveyard at Lowertown, in a grave owned by a John Feather.
Surprising therefore, when his will was published on 19th April 1858 he left an estate valued at less than £200, which seems very little for a man with sizable assets....maybe he had to spend it all supporting his illegitimate family! Unsurprisingly the executor of the will was John Feather, who's grave he was buried in, which must have meant they were close friends in life.
|Uppertown Cottages - 2016|