Harold Anstee (SW 36)

See ‘Anstey: A Complete History From the Norman Invasion to World War One‘ for much more on the Swanbourne Ansteys. In addition to biographies of various Anstey individuals who make up this sub-branch, the book contains a plethora of Anstey research and statistics, including an analysis of how the Swanbourne Ansteys fit into the pedigree descendent from Hubert de Anesti, the 12th century originator of the ‘Anstey’ surname.

SW 36. Harold Anstee: He was born in 1835 in Swanbourne to parents William Anstee (SW 31) and Elizabeth – he was a cordwainer journeyman in 1851. The ‘Northampton Mercury‘ 19 March 1853 reported “WINSLOW. PETTY SESSIONS, March 10.-Before E. W. S. Lowndes and P. Dauncey, Esqrs., and the Rev. M. Kerr Assault at Swanbourne.-William North and Harold Anstey young men of Swanbourne, were charged with having, on Sunday evening the 6th instant, assaulted Elizabeth Elling servant to Mr. John White, of that place. Complainant deposed that on her leaving chapel on the evening in question, North put his hands round her neck, and that Anstey put his foot under her clothes, and rudely assaulted her. She said there were several persons assembled together, that her clothes were torn, and that, at the time, she told the defendants to leave her alone, and that she struggled and got away as soon as she could. From the complainant’s statement it appeared that she was grossly illused. Mrs. Williamson said that when the complainant came home from chapel she complained of North and Anstey having illused her, and that she was lame from having, been kicked. The charge was denied, and in defence it was urged that the defendants were pushed against the complainant Two Sophias and a Joseph Ash were called in defence. The evidence of the girls was that they saw the complainant almost all the time after she left the chapel, and that they did not see any one assault her. Complainant said the girls were before her when she was on her way from the chapel. She positively asserted that the defendants acted as she had before described. Joseph Ash swore that no such acts were committed by the defendants. The case occupied some time. Eventually the magistrates intimated that they looked on the evidence doubtful, and that they should in consequence give the defendants the benefit of their doubts, and dismiss them on their paying their own costs.

He married Mary Ann Chantrill in 1861 in Winslow having children:

  • George Valentine Anstee (b 1862 Winslow, must have died young);
  • William James Anstee (b 1864 Winslow, died young?);
  • Emma Anstee (b 1866 Winslow, an unmarried general servant at 80 Lambs Conduct St W C, St Andrew Holborn in the 1911 Census);
  • Elizabeth Anstee (b 1867 Swanbourne, a bootmaker’s assistant in Leatherhead in 1891);
  • George Valentine Anstee (SW 43 – b 1869);
  • Harold Valentine George Anstee (b 1871 – the ‘Buckingham Express‘ 14 September 1872 reported “Death: September 7 at Winslow Harold Valentine George, son of Mr H. Anstee aged 1 year 6 months“)
  • Harold Anstee (b 1873 Winslow (some sources say Dorking) – the ‘West Surrey Times‘ 31 August 1888 reported “Harold Anstey a youth was charged with obstructing the passage of the highway at Leatherhead by means of a bread barrow which he was shown to have left unattended for 40 minutes. He pleaded guilty and his father who accompanied him appealed for leniency. He was allowed to go on payment of 5 shillings.”. He was an oilman’s assistant in Leatherhead in 1891. In the 1911 Census he was still unmarried and working as an excavator boarding at Horsley Cottages Hogs Hill Lane Cobham);
  • William Warr Anstee (b 1875 Dorking, died young?);
  • Samuel Anstee (SW 50 – b 1876 Dorking, served during World War One);
  • Ruth Anstee (b 1878 Dorking, died before 1881);
  • Joseph Frederick Anstee (SW 52 – b 1879 Dorking, fought in the Second Boer War and served and died during World War One); and
  • Ruth Anstee (b 1884 Dorking, married Christopher Border in 1902 in Lambeth, living with her family and mother at 196 High Road Chiswick in the 1911 Census);

The ‘Oxford Journal‘ 19 September 1857 reported “Harold Anstee shoemaker Swanbourne was ordered to pay 13s or be imprisoned for 14 days for having on the night of the 7th inst wilfully broken two panes of glass in the window of Lucy Turner of Mursley“.

By 1865 he was a ‘poor person’ – the ‘Buckingham Advertiser and Free Press‘ 23 December 1865 reported that “Harold Anstee Swanbourne poor person was given 9s“. The ‘Buckingham Advertiser and Free Press’ 01 July 1871 reported “William George Wilmore, an apprentice, was charged with leaving the service of Mr. H. Anstee, shoemaker, Winslow to whom he was apprenticed, his term of apprenticeship not having expired. The lad admitted leaving his master, and said he was unwilling to go back, and would rather go to gaol than do so. On being asked the reason he said it was because his master did not do as he promised to do when he was bound to him. He (his master) agreed to take him and let him live the same as he did himself, which he had not done of late. His master had been very good to him until he took to drinking, and since then he had not used him as he should do. On the morning he left his master threatened him, and told him to take himself off, as he was fit for nothing but to eat, drink, and sleep. He (the boy) left him at night. The boy complained much of the way he had been living, and also of his master’s intemperate habits. Mr. Anstee said he had always treated the lad with the greatest kindness, and as to the charges of getting drunk, they were quite untrue. The Bench decided to adjourn the case till next sessions in order to give the lad time to substantiate, if possible, the charges he had made against his master. “

In the 1871 Census the family were at Market Square, Winslow together with his nephew Alfred Anstee (see SW 35). In the 1881 Census he was a shoemaker living at Falkland Road, Dorking with his family and his widower brother William Anstee (SW 35). In 1889 he was described as “Harold Anstee, manager to Mr. Curry, bootmaker, of Leatherhead“. By the 1891 Census he was still a shoemaker, now living at Whiteleaf, Bridge Street, Leatherhead. He died in 1897 in Epsom. His widow Mary Ann was living with her daughter Ruth Border at 196 High Road Chiswick in the 1911 Census.

Anybody who can add anything to this account, or finds any mistakes on this page, please contact us at research@theansteystory.com.

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