Henry Charles Anstey, a member of the Witheridge Ansteys (a sub-branch of the Chulmleigh Ansteys), was born in February 1826 in Witheridge, Devon to parents William Anstey, a cordwainer and later shoemaker, and Mary Cole. He is the patriarch of the Waukesha, Wisconsin Ansteys of America.
In 1846 in Newton Abbot, Henry married Mary Jane Dart. They had children:
- Henry William Anstey (b 1847 Witheridge – see the Waukesha page for more);
- Charles Anstey (b 1849 Witheridge died young);
- Ellen Mary Anstey (b 1850 St Marylebone, Middlesex, lived in Delafield, Waukesha, Wisconsin, unmarried in the 1910 American Census living with her brother Walter. She died in 1922 buried at Village of Hartland Cemetery, Waukesha County, Wisconsin, PLOT ‘Section A., Block A Lot 73‘);
- Mary Jane Anstey (b 1854 England, married Thomas Wright Wood in Waukesha in 1898 and moved to Pewaukee village, Waukesha);
- Charles Samuel Anstey (b 1856 Wisconsin – see the Waukesha page for more);
- Edward [Edmund] John Anstey (b 1858 Wisconsin, was living in Delafield, Waukesha, Wisconsin in the 1905 Census with his brother Walter, both single. Edward (as Edmund) died in 1908, buried at Village of Hartland Cemetery, Hartland, Waukesha);
- Amelia Margaret Anstey (b 1861 Wisconsin, known as Millie, married George W. Sizer in Waukesha, Wisconsin in 1889);
- Walter Dart Anstey (b c1864 Wisconsin, was living in Delafield, Waukesha, Wisconsin in the 1905 Census with his brother Edward, both single. In the 1910 American Census he was still single, living with his sister Ellen in Waukesha. He died in 1929 buried at Village of Hartland Cemetery Hartland, Waukesha County);
- A daughter (died an infant).
In the 1851 Census the family was living in Carlisle Street, Marylebone – Henry Anstey was a carpenter. In 1855 Henry and his family set sail for America – their story is told in ‘Portrait and Biographical Record of Waukesha County, Wisconsin‘ (page 811-2), written in c1894, where it states:
“Henry Charles Anstey, was a native of Devonshire, England and there grew to manhood and married Miss Mary Jane Dart, who was also born in that shire. Mr Anstey was a carpenter and joiner by trade and for a great many years worked in the city of London. In the year 1855 he came with his family to America, embarking on board the sailing-vessel ‘Prince Albert’ at London. The journey was a memorable one; to add to the trials and dangers of a sea voyage, that dread disease cholera broke out among the passengers, some sixty of whom were carried off by its ravages. After being at sea for forty days the ship reached New York. Because of the sanitary condition the passengers were compelled to remain in quarantine on Staten Island for a period of two weeks. At the end of that time the passengers were permitted to go on their way. Mr Anstey proceeded to Chicago by rail, and from there to Milwaukee [Wisconsin] came by boat. In the latter city he purchased a lot, located on what is known as Prospect Avenue, for $300, on which he erected a substantial house. He continued to reside there, being employed at his trade, until the spring of 1860. At that time he traded his home in Milwaukee and $50 in cash for sixty acres of land situated one mile east of Hartland in the town of Delafield [Wisconsin]. Directly after his father’s death in 1862, Mr Anstey went to England to claim his share of the former’s property. He remained in the land of his nativity some three months, then returned to his home in Wisconsin. Soon thereafter he bought eighty acres of land in Delafield Township, about all the improvements on it being a small log house and a barn. By careful management and thrift Mr Anstey became well-to-do; by additional purchases he added to the eighty acres until his estate comprised three hundred and twenty acres of valuable land, upon which he erected a good home and modern outbuildings. In April 1878, Mr Anstey passed from the scenes of this life. Honourable and upright in his dealings he well merited the esteem of all who knew him. To Mr. and Mrs. Anstey were born five sons and four daughters, but two of whom have crossed the river. Those who still abide, besides our subject [Henry W. Anstey], are Ellen Mary, a resident of Delafield; Mary Jane, who is at home with her mother on the old homestead; Charles Samuel, a farmer of the town of Delafield; Edward John, and Walter Dart, who manage the homestead farm, and Millie M., who became the wife of George W. Sizer, of Hartland. The deceased are Charles and an infant daughter. Mrs. Anstey, who survives her husband, still lives in the old home. Surrounded by children and grandchildren, her declining years are being pleasantly spent.“
Both Henry and his wife Mary (who died in 1899) are buried in Hartland Cemetery, Waukesha County, Wisconsin.
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