Research: Henry Hunter

My 4x great grandfather Henry Hunter was born around the October of 1806 in Burton Pidsea, East Yorkshire. He was also baptised there on 11th October 1806. He was was one of 3 known children; Henry (1806-1884), John (1810-?) and Ann (1821-?). Their parents were Robert and Hannah Hunter (nee Smith).

To provide a little bit of context of the world when Henry was alive, here are a few facts. When Henry was born, George III had been the King of Great Britain and Ireland for about 46 years and would reign for another 14 years until he passed away in 1820. In Henry’s lifetime, he saw the reign of 3 Kings and 1 Queen: George III,  George IV, William IV and Queen Victoria.

Before Henry’s 1st birthday slavery was abolished in Britain (1807), the Metropolitan Police was founded in 1829 and vaccinations for the poor were introduced in 1840.

On 7th January 1832, Henry Hunter married Elizabeth Norton in Preston, East Yorkshire. They went on to have 10 known children; Robert (1833-1866), Ann (1834-?), Jane (1835-?), Christiana (1838-?), Mark (1840-?), John (1842-?), Henry (1844-?), James (1846-?), George (1850-?) and William (1851-?).

In 1841 John was a 34-year-old Agricultural Labourer. He was living with his wife and 5 of his children in Burton Pidsea.

Ten years later in 1851, Henry was 44 years old and was again, working as an Agricultural Labourer. He was living with his wife and 4 of his children in Burton Pidsea.

In 1861 Henry was 53 years old and was working as an Agricultural Labourer. He was living on Cadger Row, which is on Back Lane in Burton Pidsea, with his wife and 3 of his children. A 24-year old Thomas Howden was living with Henry as a boarder at this time.

In 1871, 64-year-old Henry was living with his wife Elizabeth and one of their sons in Burton Pidsea, East Yorkshire. He was working as an Agricultural Labourer.

In 1881, Henry was 74 years old and was living with his wife in Burton Pidsea. He was working as an Agricultural Labourer.

The following year, on 21st March 1882 Henry’s wife Elizabeth passed away in Burton Pidsea at the age of 75 years old.

On 29th February 1884, Henry sadly passed away in Burton Pidsea at the age of 77. He was buried in the churchyard of St. Peter and St. Paul’s Church in Burton Pidsea on 2nd March 1884. His gravestone can be seen in the photograph below, but it is not in its original place. It has been moved and rested against the side of the church itself, but at least we do know he is in there somewhere.

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Henry lived in a very different world to what we are all used to, which is one reason why I am interested in his life. Many of the simple things that many of us take for granted in our everyday lives would never have even entered Henry’s thoughts. A few examples of these simple things are the modern bicycle (invented 1885), the first petrol powered car (invented 1886) and the ballpoint pen (invented 1888). All of these things were invented after Henry passed away.

I would have loved to have had the opportunity to meet Henry, as I know he would have had an interesting tale or two to tell! Researching his life has made me appreciate the things that we may automatically and unintentionally take for granted, which in turn made me also appreciate how important Life is.

Thank you very much for reading,
Tony.

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