It's a long time now since I researched both mine and Mick's family trees. Whilst tracing back through his mother's line, we found out about John Hooton, Mick's five times Great Grandfather, who was born in North Meols in 1758.
John Hooton was credited with the introduction of handloom weaving in to North Meols during the 1790's. The looms were of his own design with safety standards ahead of their time. It's said that at the height of production, there were upwards of a thousand looms at work in the district.
North Meols originally covered a much larger area than it does today, including much of what is now Southport. As we'd already crossed the Pennines to visit Another Place, we decided we'd also have a trip to North Meols as we knew that St Cuthbert's Church, which is where John Hooton was christened on the 17th of September 1758, is still there. St Cuthbert's in the oldest church in Southport and the present church building dates from 1739.
Unfortunately, the church was locked so we couldn't look inside, but we had a good wander around the churchyard. I'd have liked to go inside to see the lovely stained glass windows.
John Hooton married Ellen Aughton on the 22nd of October 1780. We know that when John died in 1836 and Ellen in 1847, they were buried at North Meols Independent Chapel, however, the graveyard was cleared in 1965 and the majority of the bodies, including the Hootons, were cremated. We did find a grave belonging to Aughton's in St Cuthbert's churchyard, so I'd like to do a bit of research to see if these people were related to Ellen.
I didn't expect North Meols to be anything like it was, it's such a pretty place with lots of old buildings still standing. The North Meols Civic Society has produced a village trail guide. I didn't know about it until after our visit, but I'd now like to go back and see all the historic places with the information provided.
This cottage was built in 1749, nine years before John Hooton was born. It's amazing to think that buildings which stood in his lifetime are still here today.
Churchtown Conservative Club was built in 1729 and was originally the grammar school.
The stocks are adjacent to the church walls and were built by John Linaker in 1741. They were last used in 1861 when they held Thomas Rimmer for drunkenness.
We came across this headstone outside a cottage. It was erected in memory of Joey, a faithful dog.
There are so many pretty cottages which vary in age from the 16th to 18th century. The construction was originally of rough timber, mud and star grass which was gathered off the sandhills.
This pretty cottage was for sale.
We had a wonderful time looking around the area and it really brought John Hooton to life for us. I now want to do some more research in to this part of the family tree and see if I can uncover any more facts, especially in relation to the handloom weaving.
Always interesting to track down where our families came from. Lovely little village.ReplyDelete
There's always something to discover when you start tracing your family tree. It's no wonder that I feel so connected to Leeds as my dad's side of the family have lived here since as far back as I can trace them.Delete
I love the thought that you are treading where people have trod before one hundred or more years ago doing the same things as you do, washing, cooking, getting ready for work and sleeping. It always gives me butterflies to imagine what people were doing exactly where I am standing all those years ago.ReplyDelete
I think it gives you more of a connection to the past when you know of the people who went before you. I'd love to be able to travel back in time to meet some of my ancestors.Delete
North Meols looks a pretty place to visit and all the more interesting when you have a family connection to a place. Good luck with any further research you do, Jo. xReplyDelete
I really didn't expect to find as much as I did when we visited, and I feel sure that we've only touched the surface. I shall be eager to resume my research now and find out what else I can uncover.Delete
I'd rather hide a few of mine than find more lolReplyDelete
Pictures are lovely Jo x
Ha ha. The thing with genealogy is that you never know what you'll find when you start out.Delete
How fascinating to have found an ancestor who did something good for a place! And then to be able to see buildings that were there when he was! I've never been to North Meols, nor even heard of it! I love the stocks; there are days at school when I would like a set! (Yes, Jaden, I'm looking at you!)ReplyDelete
It's a fabulous place, and the Civic Society and Family History Society seem to have lots of information so I'd like to go down that route soon. It would be great if we could visit again soon and find out some more information, especially about John Hooton and the handloom weaving side of things.Delete
A most enjoyable, and interesting, post with wonderful pictures. Flighty xxReplyDelete
It was so interesting visiting a place with family connections. It's quite a while now since I researched Mick's family tree so I'd like to go back over it and hopefully, discover some new information.Delete
I love doing our family tree, its wonderful when you find positive connections and have the relevent information that give insight into what their lives were like and how they lived. John Hooton must have been a very well respected man, you should feel very proud of him.ReplyDelete
Genealogy is a fabulous hobby, so interesting and definitely rewarding when you find a piece of information to slot on to the tree. I really want to find more out about John Hooton, he sounds a fascinating man.Delete
That was so interesting Jo and made me remember going to Alston, where one of my ancestors was born and seeing houses that stood before he was born. It's amazing that some are still standing and then to think about the stories they could tell. Take care.ReplyDelete
We're so lucky to have so much history all around us. I find it quite hard to imagine that people lived in houses three hundred years ago which are still standing now, amazing. This trip has given me a renewed enthusiasm for genealogy, I really want to know more about the Hootons now.Delete
How fascinating, Jo. I love watching "Who Do You Think You Are?" on the telly. You've got your own version going on! :o)ReplyDelete
I love that programme too. I often wonder how they find something interesting in everyone's family they research, so it's great that I've come across an interesting story during my research too.Delete
This is such an interesting post. My father is an avid genealogist and he has traced his ancestors back to 1619 in America, and the fifteenth century in England. He's been working on it for at least thirty years. I really enjoyed reading about John Hooten and seeing this beautiful village. I love knowing that those house are so old, it's thrilling to me. Thanks for sharing.ReplyDelete
Your father has done brilliantly with his research, getting back that far is no mean feat. I should have really mentioned in my post that I've gone back a further three generations from John Hooton to his great grandfather, or Mick's eight times Great Grandfather who was called Thomas Hooton, born in the mid 1600s, but getting back as far as the fifteenth century is fabulous. It's so interesting to know where you come from and I love looking at all the names in the tree too.Delete
Very interesting. That's great that you were able to visit where an ancestor came from and see a slight glimpse through the buildings and houses. Its hard to find out a lot of information and takes time. I have watched a few episodes of Who do you think you are, and its given me the bug again.ReplyDelete
North Meols is steeped in so much history and it's great to be a part of it. The only problem now I've visited is that I want to know more.Delete
What a lovely village.ReplyDelete
It's actually quite a busy place, but very pretty.Delete
What a beautiful place Jo. The cottages are stunning. I do like thatched cottages but I would be too worried about things with more legs than me lurking about in the thatch. Thankfully ours is a tiled roof but we still occasionally get the odd eight legged visitor especially as the weather gets a bit colder. Had one or two already.ReplyDelete
I love to see a thatched roof, but I'm like you, I wouldn't like to think what was living in it. I have quite a phobia of spiders, which unfortunately, I've passed on to Daniel. We've had lots in our house just lately, apparently it's the mating season.Delete
I too love doing our family trees and have just recently stumbled upon some fascinating facts. I hope you enjoy your research, how interesting about the looms, it must have been very rewarding to visit the lovely village and get to know where these rellies came from and image their daily lives. Beautiful buildings too xcxReplyDelete
Genealogy is a fascinating hobby, all the information that's uncovered along the way. Visiting North Meols has spurred me on again, I'm itching to get back to it all now.Delete
What a fascinating place for you to visit because of the family connections. And to think John Hooton would have seen those buildings too! Aren't they just so picturesque. You must do the trail, you never know what else you may find.ReplyDelete
I really didn't think there would be so much to see in North Meols, I really want to go back so that we can do the trail, I think we missed out lots of interesting things.Delete