Who lived at Bishops' House? - 1735 -1890

The tenant farmers

After the Blythes left, there is a gap in our knowledge of the occupants of Bishops’ House from 1735 to 1779. We know that the House passed out of ownership of the Blythe family. It is probable that the land was bought by Benjamin Roebuck in 1759 when he bought the Meersbrook Estate, which he later sold to Samuel Shore Senior in 1778. Meersbrook Hall was built by Benjamin Roebuck in 1759 and we can assume that his family lived there and not at Bishops’ House which would have been two centuries old by then and lacking in the modern amenities that the new owners wanted. So it is probable that the House was modified and let out to other tenant farmers for about four decades before the Wilde brothers occupied it. By 1779 the land on which Bishops’ House stands, and the adjacent fields was in the ownership of Samuel Shore and son. By 1817 the owner is recorded as Samuel Shore senior. 

The first of the tenant farmers that we know about are the Wildes. Two brothers, George and Thomas Wilde (sometimes spelled as Wild) lived there with their families. Our first record of them dates from 1779 when George would have been 25 and Thomas 23, so they couldn’t have lived there for more than a few years before then. The following is the information we have about them.

The Wilde family

George and Thomas’ parents were George and Ann Wilde. George Wilde married Ann Green on the 26th of April 1753. They had five children.

1-George, baptised on the 15th of April 1754.
2-Thomas, baptised on the 12th of March 1756.
3-Anne, baptised on the 20th of April 1758.
4-Mary, baptised on the 26th of May 1760.
5-Elizabeth, baptised on the 5th of December 1762.

Anne, George’s wife was buried on the 28th of September 1764.

George Wilde married Sarah. A search was conducted for their marriage. Of several possibilities the most likely is the marriage of George Wilde and Sarah Hallam on the 11th of April 1779.

George and Sarah Wilde had eleven children:

1-Anne, baptised on the 19th of September 1779.
2-Sarah, baptised on the 17th of June 1781.
3-George, baptised on the 15th of February 1784. He married Annie Gillat on the 3rd of Decenber 1810. George, was buried on the 22nd of February 1815.
4-Joseph, baptised on the 6th of November 1785. He married Elizabeth Bingham on the 24th of December 1805.
5-William, baptised on the 22nd of April 1787.
6-Martha, baptised on the 12th of August 1788.
7-Edward, baptised on the 7th of November1790.
8-Henry, baptised on the 12th of February 1792.
9-Ellis, baptised on the 1st of December 1793.
10-Frances, baptised on the 11th of December1796.
11-Aaron, baptised on the 4th of August 1799 .

Thomas Wilde also married a woman called Sarah. A search was conducted for their marriage in the local area, but without success.

Thomas and Sarah Wilde had seven children:

1-Thomas, baptised on the 20th of November 1785. Thomas Wilde was buried on the 10th of August 1853 aged 67 and is listed as ‘of Four Lane Ends.’
2-Mary, baptised on the 6th of May 1787. Mary was buried on the 7th of January 1790.
3-Hannah, baptised on the 16th of March 1789.
4-Anne, baptised on the 10th of May 1790.
5-John, baptised on the 9th of October 1791. John Wilde was buried on the 25th of January 1829 aged 37.
6-James, was baptised on the 15th of September 1793. James Wild was buried on the 25th of August 1822 aged 29.
7-Ruth, baptised on the 21st of August 1796.

George Wild was buried on the 28th of May 1815 aged 61.

Thomas Wild was buried on the 24th of January 1816 aged 59.

Sarah Wild was buried on the 22nd of January 1831 aged 75.

Sarah Wild was buried on the 27th of July 1834 aged 78.

Unfortunately the burial records do not record the name of the husband, so we don’t know which Sarah was married to George, and which to Thomas.

Sources

The Norton Parish Records, available at the Local Studies Library on the 1st floor, Central Library, Surrey Street Sheffield S1 1XZ and the Sheffield Archives Library at 52 Shoreham Street Sheffield S1 4SP.

The White family

From the early 1830s there is information that Joseph White was farming the land around Bishops’ House and, assuming that they occupied the same property, they lived in Bishops’ House. The two Wilde widows, the two Sarahs, died in 1831 and 1834, and the first reference we have for Joseph White farming in the area is in 1833. These dates are very close. Is it possible that following the deaths of their husbands, George and Thomas in 1815 and 1816, they continued to rent and live in Bishops’ House with some of the grown up children?

Joseph White was born about 1794 in Heeley, Yorkshire and was a dairy farmer. About 1820 he married Saley Whittington, born about 1787 in Greenhill, Derbyshire, the daughter of a prominent farmer who farmed at the grange of Mosborough Hall and they lived in Sponden, Derbyshire, where their first son, James was born in 1821. In 1822 they had another son, Thomas who was buried on the 23rd of June 1832.
By 1833 Joseph White was farming in Norton Lees, though we do not know if the family lived at Bishops’ House.
By 1841 the family were living in Bishops’ House and farming about 40 acres on land between the house and the Meers Brook.

Joseph’s wife Saley was buried on the 9th of July 1843, aged 56.

Their son James married Jane Mitchell on the 15th of July 1844 at All Saints, Rotherham. She had been born in Greenhill on the 27th of March 1815.

James and Jane White had eight children:

1-Saley, born on the 13th of April 1845 in Bishops’ House and baptised on the 11th of May 1845. She married William John Hoyland, farmer of Gleadless, 42, at St James’ Norton Lees on the 17th of November 1875. His father was Hugh Hoyland, farmer and her father was James White, farmer. Saley White died on the 15th of May 1921.
2-Thomas, born on the 24th of May 1846 and baptised on the 2nd of August 1846. He married Jane Marsh, 22, at St James, Norton Lees on the 5th of February 1866. His father was James White, farmer and her father was William Marsh, cutler.
3-Jane Hannah, born on the 23rd of March 1848 and baptised on the 30th of April 1848. She died on the 1st of December 1913 at the Little Sisters of the Poor, Healey, Sheffield.
4-Ella, born on the 31st of October 1849 and baptised on the 9th of December 1849. She married Francis William Rawlins on the 16th of February 1876 at St James, Norton Lees. He was a bachelor, 21, a dressing case instrument manufacturer of Norton. His father was Joseph B Rawlins, dressing case manufacturer and her father was James White, farmer. Ella died on the 22nd of April 1885.
5-James, born on the 10th of December 1851and baptised on the 29th of February 1852. James died on the 21st of January 1891.
6-William, born on the 22nd of July 1854 and baptised on the 24th of September 1854.
7-Elizabeth Sykes, born on the 5th of July 1856 and baptised on the 3rd of August 1856.
8-Joseph Lindley, born on the 11th of May 1861(this date must be wrong), and baptised on the 14th of April 1861. He married Harriet Alice Pickford on the 8th of April 1883 at St James, Norton Lees.

Joseph White died on the 6th of March 1869 aged 75 and was buried on the 10th of March 1869.

James White’s wife Jane died on the 9th of September 1875. Most of his children moved out and by 1881 he was farming with just his sons James and Joseph Lindsey. By 1891 Bishops’ House had been taken over for the use of the Park Gardeners and James White was living in the row of three cottages to the east of Bishops’ House, with his daughter Jane and granddaughter Winifred. He is still recorded as a farmer in 1891 and 1893.

Sources

The Norton Parish Records, available at the Local Studies Library on the 1st floor, Central Library, Surrey Street Sheffield S1 1XZ and the Sheffield Archives Library at 52 Shoreham Street Sheffield S1 4SP.

The Derrick Connolly family tree at genealogy.com.

Information supplied by Joy Bullivant.

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