Jonty’s neighbours

And now we explore the neighbours of Jonty Trot ….
Adeline identifies …. the Woodruffe’s, Smith’s, and Mr. Fox lived in the houses facing Mount Street.

The Fox family
The Fox Family had a close association with Mount Street.

Adeline remembers ….. a piece of spare land at the top, looking down Mount Street, was bought by Mr. Fox, a retired mechanic, who built two cottages, right back from the road.
His daughters, Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Woodruffe, lived in them.

Strelley-born needlemaker John Fox was the son of framework knitter Joseph and Hannah (nee Paling) and the brother of needlemaker William Fox of South Street.
His first wife Ann (nee Meer) died in January 1825, aged 19 and less than a year after their marriage.
In the following year he married Cossall-born Hannah Heywood, the daughter of George and Martha (nee Syson), and the couple lived then at Ilkeston, where their four children were born.
Hannah died in December 1839, aged 39, and in every census thereafter John is listed at Mount Street — until he died there in December 1874, aged 74.

Of the four children….

Born about 1827 eldest child Ann married widower and higgler/coal dealer John Woodroffe in November 1858 and then continued to live in Mount Street.
John Woodruffe was born in Costock, Nottinghamshire about 1828, the son of Joseph and Ann (nee Hopwell). His first wife had died only five months before his second wedding. She was born Elizabeth Wheatley and had been the second wife of William Butt.
Are you following this?!
(See Burgin’s Yard and Row if you need a recap).
Like many folk in Ilkeston John kept a few pigs in styes close to his house and there was nothing wrong with that.
What was wrong however were the six tons of offensive manure that John had allowed to accumulate, and the filthy state of his two styes.
In August 1873 he was served a notice by William Attenborough, Inspector of Nuisances, on behalf of the Local Board, to rectify the overwhelming stench arising from his styes. His pigs were now nuisances and injurious to health.
John removed some of the pigs but this was insufficient action to satisfy Medical Sanitary Officer Robert Wood and the coal dealer was taken to court where he was ordered to remove the nuisances completely, and pay the court’s costs.

Second daughter Hannah Eliza died in infancy and was buried at St. Mary’s Church on May 15th 1830.

On the following day their third daughter was baptised at the same church and given the same name as her deceased sister.
She also married a widower — lacemaker William Bennett Smith — in November 1854, and lived on in Mount Street initially with her father and after his death, with several of her children — until her death in September 1883.
William Bennett Smith was for many years a PPGM (Past Provincial Grand Master) and the treasurer of the Duke of Rutland Lodge, MUFS (Manchester Unity Friendly Society). He died in Mount Street in April 1879, aged 54.

Only son John Samuel died in June 1836 aged four.


Tommy Irons ??
Again, Adeline describes the scene as she recalls it ….. At the side leading to the field, were two cottages and Mrs. Burgin’s slaughter house.
Tommy Irons, a deaf and dumb man, lived in one of the side cottages leading to the field, with his wife.

Thomas Irons also appears in records as Thomas Hine, Hines, Hind and Hinds – take your pick !

Is this Tommy? ….. In September 1827 this request was printed in the Derby Mercury.

“About four months since, the son of John Hind, of Ilkeston, near Derby, aged 25, nearly dumb, left his father’s house in a collier’s dress. He is about 5ft. 6ins. in height, broad set, pale complexion, brown hair, the letters T.H. in black, on the wrist of one arm, and he cannot make himself understood.
“He is supposed to have gone with a cotton weaver, and has been heard of in the neighbourhood of Walsall.
“The father has spent his time and money in search of him to no purpose. A line to the father from anyone knowing where he is, would be gratefully acknowledged by his disconsolate parents”.
If this was Tommy, then by 1841 he may have returned to his home town.

Is this Tommy?

“About fifty years ago (i.e. in the early 1840’s) there were living on Cotmanhay-road a family of the name of Hinds. One of the sons, whose name was Tom, was defective in speech, and boys annoyed him by putting one arm over the other and moving it backwards and forwards to imitate sawing, but they had to take to their heels and get out of his way. This originated through one of our townsmen playing a lark on Tom’s mother, whereupon Tom, armed with a hatchet, laid in wait for the offender, and said, as well as he could, ‘Kill him! Kill him!’” (A Pittite 1893)

The 1841 census lists Thomas Hinds as a labourer, aged 40, at Duke Street. His putative father, labourer John, aged 60, is living on Ilkeston Common, with (other?) children William and Jane.

John’s wife and Tommy’s mother, Phoebe (nee Knighton), had died in October 1839, aged 62.

1851 finds Thomas Hind, general labourer, aged 47, at Cotmanhay with his wife Ann (nee Hall) whom he had married at Holy Trinity Church in Lenton in December 1845. The officiating minister at their wedding recorded in the marriage register that the name of  Thomas’s father could ‘not be ascertained as the man is dumb’.

Also in 1851, at Middle Road, ‘father’ John is still living with his two children.

1861 and Thomas Hines, agricultural labourer, aged 55, is at the Potteries in Ilkeston with his wife.

The 1871 census is the first to describe Tommy’s disability and shows him — as Thomas Hine — sandwiched between the households of Jonathan ‘Jonty Trot’  Bostock and William Bennett Smith. Aged 68, he is living at 4 Mount Street, ’deaf and dumb from birth’ and with him are wife Ann and sister Jane, also ‘deaf and dumb from birth’.

In February 1878 Mary Ann Wheatley was sentenced to two months imprisonment with hard labour for stealing a dress, an apron, a pair of trousers and a silk pocket handkerchief from Thomas and Ann Hinds, at their Mount Street home where she was a lodger. The dress had been made for Ann by Elizabeth Raynes, dressmaker of Nottingham Road.

Thomas Hinds is at the same address in 1881, described as ‘o comb box maker‘, widower, deaf and dumb, aged 70.
Sister Jane died at Mount Street in April 1875, aged 66.
Wife Ann died at Mount Street on December 14th 1878, aged 70.

Gap alert!  When did Tommy die?
And was he the inspiration for The Who’s 1967 rock opera? (I know — he wasn’t blind!!).

I believe that Tommy had an older sister Elizabeth who on the 1841 census was employed on the Cotmanhay farm of her uncle Thomas Knighton.
In 1847 she married widower Abel Toplis and thereafter lived in Cotmanhay Road. She died on December 8th 1862, at a recorded age of 62.


And looking northwards we can see Club Row.