Enoch EDWARDS

Enoch Edwards was born in about December 1840 in Birmingham. His father was John EDWARDS, a millwright and his mother was Sarah (from the 1851 Census).

In June 1841, Enoch was six months old, living with his parents in Unett Street, in the Parish of St Georges in Birmingham.

By 1851 his father had died and the family had moved to 47 Summer Lane, Birmingham. His mother was working as a mangler, sister Matilda (a dressmaker) and brothers Reubin and Stephen (who were gun percussioners), and Enoch worked as an errand boy.

His sister Sophia emigrated to the US. Another sister, Matilda, went on to marry Edwin EDDINGTON in September 1854, and the couple were witnesses to Enoch's marriage to Emelia PARKER at St. Philips Church, Birmingham on 10th November, 1867. It is this that confirms the link to this 1851 Census record.

In 1861 he was still living with his mother and brother Stephen and working as a button tool maker.

At this time of his wedding Enoch was a button tool maker living in Church Street. By 1871 he was a publican in Clifton Road where he ran a maltroom & stable owned by George Bott. In 1881 he was living at Bournbrook Tavern, Northfield, Worcester described as a button tool maker again.

Enoch and Emelia had six children. Henry born in 1868, Ralph in 1871, both in Birmingham, Emily Mary, born in 1872, Garnet, and Albert Parker, who was born in 1876 in Small Heath and Ada in 1880 in Birmingham.

Enoch refused to allow his son Albert Parker to go to King Edwards School in Birmingham, where he had been awarded a place. Instead, in October 1890 he made Albert Parker Edwards take an apprenticeship with a pawnboker in Tipton.

Towards the end of the 19th century Enoch kept The Pack Horse in Alcester Road, Hollywood, where a twist was 1½d an ounce, and beer was 2d a pint. The children had to get up early to get breakfast at 6 o'clock for the hay and straw men on their way to the Birmingham hay and straw market. Enoch is listed as a member of "The Kingswood & Pack Horse Association for the Prosecution of Offenders", a kind of early Neighbourhood Watch, dated 25 October 1890.

The Edwards family later moved to Redditch where they kept The Riflewoman. They must have left the Pack Horse by 1895 as another publican was in place by then.

In the 1900 edition of Kelly's Directory for Worcestershire, Enoch Edwards is listed as a beer seller of 36 Park Road, Redditch, although it doesn't mention the name of the inn if there was one. In 1901 his son Ralph was living at 36 Park Road and is listed as an innkeeper.

Family accounts have it that Enoch EDWARDS fell out with all his family, and at about the age of 60, he left all behind and emigrated to the U.S.A. Enoch was described as being an active man, and it is believed that he had another family when he settled in the U.S.A. There could be a grain of truth to this story in that Enoch's sister Sophia had emigrated to the United States in 1856/7.

An Enoch Edwards did go through US Naturalization on 24 Sep 1894 in New York and was living at 239 West 126th Street. Perhaps this was the same Enoch Edwards, aged 58 and English, who returned to Liverpool from Philadelphia in 1895 on board the Ohio. So perhaps Enoch made a trip to the US, but returned.

It may be, however, that he relocated somewhat closer to home. On 11 June 1902 Harry Wright (the local postmaster responsible in those days for licensing) brought an Enoch EDWARDS to the Bedfordshire Petty Sessions in Biggleswade regarding "Hole in the Wall", believed to refer to the now defunct "Hole in the Wall" public house at 76 Shortmead Street, Biggleswade with Enoch being granted "temporary authority". On 9 July 1902 the transfer was granted. A year later in the 1903 edition of Kelly's Directory of Bedfordshire, Hunts and Northamptonshire there is an Enoch EDWARDS running the Wheatsheaf Public House, Church Street, St. Neots, Huntingdonshire which is 14 miles south of Biggleswade.

Enoch's daughter, Ada, was married in 1906 and he appears in the church record as being a publican. As other deceased fathers in those records were recorded as such it indicates that he was still active in May 1906. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9


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