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Catherine Jones

Catherine was born in Llangattock, Breconshire in approximately 1844. I am not 100% certain of her surname, but believe that it is a fair assumption that it was Jones, since the marriage indexes show a marriage between a Benjamin Rees and Catherine Jones in the final quarter of 1867. Also on the 1871 census, a Jane Jones from Llangattock (Benjamin’s “unmarried” sister in law) was living at Wernhir, another strong indicator that Catherine’s maiden name was Jones..

Catherine’s first child, Mary Ann, was born in late 1868 and was baptised at Monkswood Parish Church in January 1869. The family was living at Lower Wernhir at the time. Their first son William was born in 1870. The 1871 census shows them all living together at Lower Wernhir, Glascoed.

At least three more children followed while they were at Glascoed; Leonard LewisTom BenjaminElizabeth Jane and possibly Katie (although she may have been born after they moved away). Their children were all baptised at Monkswood Parish Church, with the exception of Katie. The church was also the scene of a sadder occasion on 16th August 1876, when they buried their infant daughter Elizabeth Jane. She was aged just 4 months.

They had left Glascoed by 1878. Rees family folklore relates that the family farm “had to be sold in order to pay death duties for a family member who was in Australia”. This has not been fully verified at this point. The family settled in Bootle, having moved there via Gloucester, where another son, John Athel, was born on 17th September 1878. We see them on the 1881 Census at 33 Sandy Lane, Walton on Hill, Lancashire. They also had a daughter named Temperance, who was born in Bootle on March 18th 1883. Their final child, Benjamin, was born on 20th October 1885 and died on 13th September 1886.

Benjamin senior. opened a Blacksmiths shop in Sandy Lane, Bootle. He made “lots of the Victorian grave furniture, as well as being involved in the construction of the Laxey Wheel in the Isle of Man”, according to his descendant, Adrian Rees. He had died by the time of the 1891 census, since Catherine was recorded on that census as a widow and “house manager” living at 48 Garden Lane, Bootle, Lancashire.

Related Records:

Rees family bible

1871 census