The Straws of Stanton Road

After our visit to the Cartwrights, Smiths and Burrows …. in the 1840’s and 1850’s there were several Straw households residing in Stanton Road, or Boot Lane as it was then called. Adeline describes them.

Number 2 Stanton Road, home of Phillip (1770-1840) and Sarah Straw (c1768-1820)

“Standing back from the road were two cottages. In the first lived Mr. Philip Straw, joiner, his wife, son Philip and daughters Sarah and Lizzie. Mrs. Straw kept a Dame’s School.”

In 1871 this would be Number 2 Stanton Road.
Born about 1810, Philip Straw junior, son of sawyer Philip and Sarah (nee Bussforth), lived most of his life in Stanton road with his wife Mary (nee White) whom he married on September 28th, 1831.

The Ilkeston Advertiser (May 1906) reported that Philip junior worked as a carpenter for the Newdigate family for 55 years and this Straw family had worked on the Newdigate estate of  West Hallam for over 230 years.

As a sprightly octogenarian Mary was still visiting friends and relatives in Dale Abbey and West Hallam.

Both died at Number 2…Philip on May 10th, 1891 and Mary on April 12th, 1897, aged 88. They are buried in the Ilkeston General cemetery close to their home of over 50 years.

The children of Phillip junior and Mary (nee White)

Philip and Mary had several children although Adeline (above) seems to be remembering the younger ones, living with their parents in the 1860’s.

1.  Born in 1832 the oldest son was Henry who spent his early life in Stanton Road working as a colliery carpenter.
In 1855 he married Hannah Barker, daughter of framesmith Samuel and Mary (nee Chambers) at the Ilkeston Independent Chapel although they were both identified with the South Street Wesleyan Methodist Church where Henry was a trustee.

About 1863 they left Stanton Road to live in West Hallam and thereafter regularly attended the parish church there.
“But (Henry) ever retained his Nonconformist instincts and was opposed to any kind of ritualism or High Churchism.  He hated form and ceremony, and was a sincere believer in the plain and unvarnished truths of the Bible and religion, and in simple and earnest worship”. (IA 1906)
About 1883 he became churchwarden at West Hallam Parish Church, an office he retained until his death.
He was also, in later life, Chairman of the Parish Council, a trustee for Scargill’s Charity, and a tax collector for West Hallam and Kirk Hallam.

One Tuesday morning in May 1906, now aged 73, Henry was engaged in his work at West Hallam Hall and left to attend the Archidiaconal Visitation at All Saints Church in Derby, in his capacity as churchwarden. He was in the highest spirits at the time, and laughed and conversed cheerily’ with his accompanying colleagues.
Just about to enter the church at a few minutes before 11 o’clock ‘he dropped down without uttering a sound’. He was dead.

All ten of Henry’s children outlived him. And several of them continued the occupational tradition of working with wood … for example Henry’s son Samuel, born in 1862 in Stanton Road, went to work at West Hallam Colliery at the age of 10 … and retired from there 58 years later. By that time he had reached the position of head carpenter, and at one point in his life had enjoyed both bell-ringing and football as pastimes. A devoted churchman at St Mary’s, a life-long Conservative and a member of the Ilkeston Conseravtive Miners’ Association, he died on May 22nd 1938 at his home of 37 Albert Street.

2.  Daughter Mary White Straw left the town for Derby about 1860 with her husband John Sudbury, son of High Street lacemaker William and Hannah (nee Swindell). John worked for the Midland Railway.

3.  Daughter Sarah was married in 1862 to lacemaker Albert Tatham, son of Zachariah and Sarah (nee Hunt) and by the end of the century had found a home in Graham Street.

4.  Son Philip was employed by Messrs. Henry Carrier and Sons, of Ilkeston and Nottingham, for more than 16 years before moving to work in London, as manager and commercial traveller for a large Yorkshire-based firm.

5.  Youngest child Elizabeth remained unmarried at Stanton Road into the next century.

6/7/8  Thomas and Jane died in infancy, and William died in 1862, aged 17.


Number 1 Stanton Road, home of James (1806-1869) and Mary Straw (1804-1878)

“In the next (cottage) lived a Mrs. Straw, and her daughters” declares Adeline

This would be Number 1 in 1871 — and here lived Philip’s older brother, James, also a sawyer, with his wife, Mary (nee Bancroft) and several children.

James died in Stanton Road on November 9th, 1869 and his widow continued living there until her death on April 22nd, 1878.

The daughters recalled by Adeline were perhaps Emma Sophia (born 1844) and Ellen (1847) although their oldest surviving son, Jacob…another sawyer!…lived nearby in Regent Street, with his wife and children.

Daughter Emma Sophia was born in Boot Lane/Stanton Road in 1844 and married Thomas Daykin, a Mapperley-born iron moulder, on October 5th, 1868. The later part of her life was very unhappy — she appeared depressed, frequently drank to excess and was a taker of laudanum, at least occasionally. In September 1898, full of pain  she was admitted to Nottingham General Hospital. Her younger daughter Ellen Sophia Sumpter visited her mother at the hospital and kindly took her a box of opium but “no more than she took in a few days” !! Then shortly after, Emma Sophia’s condition worsened and before the doctor could arrive to examine her, she died. The inquest verdict was ‘death caused by an overdoes of laudanum’. By this time someone in her family had lost count — her death age was registered as 49 when it should have been 53/54.

It was a tradition among some families to give children the maiden name of their mother or a grandmother, and it was thus with Jacob. His mother was Mary Bancroft (born 1804), daughter of Joseph Bancroft and Elizabeth Kirkby who married in October 1802, and so it was that Jacob became ‘Jacob Kirkby Straw’.


Medical Alert! May 1830

James was suffering badly from toothache and had purchased a small bottle of laudanum for relief. Having used a little he left the remainder on a chair by his bedside and went out. On his return he noticed that his elder son Philip, just two years old, was asleep in bed — very unusual for the time of day. But then James noticed that partnof the laudanum was missing and tried to roues his lad. “I’ve left some for Joey*” declared Philip and that was then that James panicked. The father tried everything but his son died within a few hours.
*Joey was Jacob Kirkby Straw, then just over one.

Traffic warning! March 19th, 1860*

On this Monday morning a horse-drawn cart left Ilkeston, driven by carter George Sanson of Moors Bridge Lane, accompanied by 19-year old Lewis Straw, youngest son of James and Mary. It made its way to Nottingham where the two men visited several public houses, drank at all of them, and began the return journey about five o’clock that evening, both of them feeling  rather ‘fresh’.
Somehow along this journey — at Radford — George left the cart and Lewis drove off without him, urging the horse into a gallop to try to out-distance the carter. All went well until Lewis tried to drive over a bridge where he lost balance, lurched forward onto the shaft and thence onto the ground, the off-wheel passing over his head.
He was helped to his feet, blood pouring out of his mouth. He sighed once or twice, and died very shortly after.


William (1796-1865) and Catherine Straw (1794-1870)

Also living close by on Stanton Road — though not mentioned by Adeline — was another older Straw brother, William whose occupation was — guess what?! —  and his family, living in a cottage with “a pretty garden in which grew a gooseberry bush as high as an apple tree”. (John Cartwright).
William died suddenly aged 70, while at work. At his inquest, in August 1865, the Coroner recorded that he had died from disease of the Heart’.
William’s wife, Catherine or ‘Kitty’ (nee White), was nurse to Sarah Norman, the wife of Dr. George Blake Norman. It is possible that Kitty was the sister of Mary White, the wife of Philip Straw junior.


Thomas (1789-1865) and Eliza Straw (1792-1845)

And yet another Boot Lane Straw!!

Born in Trowell, Thomas Straw, stocking maker, had lived in the same lane but left Ilkeston in the 1840’s to go to Gedling — although several of his children remained behind.
For many years Thomas had collected tolls at the Ilkeston Toll Gate and perhaps it is no coincidence that at Gedling village he appears as the railway gatekeeper.
His wife, Eliza (nee Pares), had kept a day school in Boot Lane….‘a kind old Church lady’ in the view of one of her ex-pupils, who had received food and clothing from her — although she was probably no older than 40 at the time Thomas died at Gedling on August 6th, 1865, aged 76.


And so we move on, to Nottingham Road.