The Chester, PA Ansteys

by Gary. M. Ansteychief researcher of the Anstey story project.

Overview of the Chester, Pennsylvania Ansteys

The Chester Ansteys of Delaware County, Pennsylvania in America are headed by Henry Dutton Anstey (b 1832). They are a sub-branch of the Bristol Ansteys.

Henry Dutton Anstey (b 1832 Bristol)

Henry Dutton Anstey was born in 1832 in Bristol to parents Cornelius Dutton Anstey and Charlotte Hayes. His father died in 1833, a year after his birth, and Henry Dutton Anstey was baptised in 1837 in Bristol St Philip aged 5. 

Henry Dutton Anstey moved to Pennsylvania, America. He possibly emigrated in 1854 aboard the ship ‘SS Saranak‘ where “Hy Anstey, a 23 year old mechanic” arrived in Pennsylvania on 9/18/1854, though confusingly another “Hy Anstey aged 23” arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in December 1854 aboard the ship ‘Sea Queen‘.

Henry married Laura Elizabeth Seamp (b 1830 England) in 1855 in York, Pennsylvania “[Marriage] Wednesday June 27 10pm Henry T. D. Anstey of Chester and Laura E. Seamp of Bristol England at Mrs Collisons. Fee $2.50“. They had children: 

In the 1860 Census, the family were in North Ward Chester Borough, Delaware, Pennsylvania; Henry was a shoemaker. By the 1870 Census, the family were in South Ward, Chester; Henry was a “boot and shoemaker“.

In 1882 Henry was re-elected as Treasurer of the Chester City Presbyterian Sunday School (he had been Treasurer since 1873) as well as the Chester City Presbyterian Church.

In 1891 Henry Anstey was a City Assessor in Chester, Delaware his “term expires, April, 1893” according to the Chester City Directory. In 1900 Henry Anstey lived at 509 West 2nd Street, Chester.

In 1905 the ‘Philadelphia Inquirer‘ reported “Chester PA: June 28. Mr and Mrs Henry Anstey of this city last evening celebrated with their friends the 50th anniversary of their wedding. Both are over 70 years of age. Mr Anstey is County Assessor

Henry Dutton Anstey died in the Norristown Insane Asylum, Montgomery, Pennsylvania in 1909 “aged 75“ and a “shoemaker“; he was buried at Chester Rural Cemetery in Chester, PA. The headstone inscription reads “Henry D. Anstey Jan 3 1832 – Jan 30 1909. Laura E. Anstey Apr 7 1830 – Mar 7 1907. God is Love

The ‘Chester Times‘ on 1 February 1909 reported “HENRY D. ANSTEY DIED ON SATURDAY: City Assessor for many years and for forty years an Officer of the Presbyterian Sunday School. Former City Assessor Henry D. Anstey died on Saturday at Norristown, PA and the remains will be brought to this city tomorrow afternoon…Mr Anstey was an elder in the Second Presbyterian Church for a number of years and for forty years he was treasurer of the Sunday School, which he helped to organise… Mr Anstey for a number of years was ward assessor for the Old South ward, and later when the city was redistricted, he was elected a city assessor, an office which he filled very satisfactorily several times. Mr Anstey is survived by three sons and one daughter and was in the seventy sixth year of his age. He was a member of Lieperville Lodge…

George H. Anstey (b 1856 Pennsylvania)

George H. Anstey was born in 1856 in Pennsylvania to parents Henry Dutton Anstey and Laura Elizabeth Seamp – he was possibly was a firefighter (he was certainly a director of the Franklin Fire Company in 1886) and he has Anstey descendants alive today. He married Mary J. Nugent and they had children:

  • Mary H. A. Anstey (b 1884 died 1904, buried at Holy Cross Cemetery Yeadon, Delaware County “ANSTEY – On the 7th of November, 1904, MARY H. A., daughter of George H. and Mary J. Anstey, and granddaughter of Henry and Laura Anstey and the late Edward and Margaret Nugent, of Chester, Pa., aged 20 years and 7 months. Relatives and friends of the family are invited to attend the funeral, on Saturday, at 8.30 a. m., from her parents’ residence, 3552 Frankford ave. Solemn requiem mass at Church of the Ascension at 10 a. m. Interment at Holy Cross Cemetery.“; and
  • George Edward Anstey (b 24 August 1886, in the 1910 American Census he was an insurance agent living with his parents in Philadelphia Ward 33. He married Anna M. Randall in 1913 in Philadelphia and they had three children Helen Marie Anstey (b 23 March 1914, known as Nellie); George Anstey Junior (b 1916) and Anna Anstey (b 1919). In the June 1917 Draft Registration for World War One, George was “married with two children” living at 742 East West Morland, Philadelphia and working for the Federal Government as a “time and production clerk“. George Edward Anstey died in 1921 – the ‘Philadelphia Inquirer‘ reporting on 13 May 1921 “DIED: Anstey George E. husband of Anna Anstey (nee Randall) and son of George H. and Mary J. Anstey. Relatives and friends invited to funeral Saturday parents residence 742 E. Westmoreland Street. Solemn Requiem Mass Church of Ascension – Internment Holy Cross Cemetery“. By the 1930 Census his widow and children were living with his father).

In the 1910 American Census, George H. Anstey, his wife and son George were living at Ward 33 Philadelphia where he was a machinist. In the 1920 Census the whole family were still living in Ward 33 where George was still a machinist.

In the 1930 Census George H. Anstey (now a widower) was living in Philadelphia with his daughter in law Anna Anstey (widow of George Edward Anstey) and three grandchildren Nellie Anstey (b 1914); George Anstey Junior (b 1916) and Anna Anstey (b 1919))

Charles William Anstey (b 1858 Pennsylvania)

Charles William Anstey was born on 15 February 1858 in Pennsylvania to parents Henry Dutton Anstey and Laura Elizabeth Seamp. He married Isabella Baynes [Banes] (b c1859) in c1877 and they had children:

  • Laura Elizabeth Anstey (b 9 July 1878, Chester, married Wilford Crosby Burke in 1900 in Tent, New Castle, Delaware. In the 1910 American Census they were living at Chester Ward 4 with a boarder Alfred B. Anstey (her first cousin – see below));
  • Alfred Henry Anstey (b 28 October 1880. He was living with his mother and stepfather in Delaware in 1900, an “apprentice machinist“. He married Mary Estella Campbell (known as both Mary and Estella) on 16 April 1902 in Delaware (parents confirmed as Charles Anstey and Bella Baines) and they had a child Norman Anstey (b 1907, living with parents In the 1910 American Census, residing in Philadelphia in 1926, and living with his mother? Estella Rose and her new husband Edward Rose in Philadelphia Ward 44 in 1940. He married Eleanor E. McNutt in 1947 in Philadelphia, the marriage certificate confirming his parents’ names). In the 1910 American Census they were living at Manheim Ward 2 Lancaster, Pennsylvania where Alfred was a machinist. The year after they moved temporarily to Glengarry Ontario, Canada where Alfred was a superintendent in the 1911 Canadian Census. They must have returned to America soon after this because in September 1917 he was back living at Ridley Park working as an insurance salesman when a client he was collecting weekly premiums from (Fred Sutton) assaulted him “Anstey wore glasses and one eye was so baldy cut from the broken glass he was laid up for two weeks“. In the September 1918 Draft Registration for World War One, Alfred wrote that he was living at 6 Bartoll Appts, Ridley Park, Pennsylvania; that he was a salesman at Boardman & Co; and that his wife was Mary E. Anstey. By the 1920 Census the couple were still living at Ridley Park, Delaware, where Alfred Henry Anstey was a travelling salesman. By 1930 they were in Wilmington, New Castle, Delaware. Alfred died on 5 August 1945, buried at Lawn Croft Cemetery, Linwood, Lower Chichester Township, Delaware, Pennsylvania plot reference “Sec C Lot 259 Grave 7“. His widow Mary was buried there too)

In the 1880 Census Charles, Isabella and Laura were living in Chester where Charles was a “painter in a shipyard“.

Charles William Anstey died on 4 February 1884, buried in Chester Rural Cemetery so his widow Isabella remarried to William Quceil in c1887. In the 1900 Census they were living in Delaware, Pennsylvania with Isabella‘s son Alfred Henry Anstey and her mother Caroline Banes.

Alfred John Anstey (b 1863 Pennsylvania)

Alfred John Anstey was born in 1863 in Pennsylvania to parents Henry Dutton Anstey and Laura Elizabeth Seamp. He married Eleanor Mary Hoey in Delaware, Pennsylvania in 1886. The ‘Chester Times‘ on 18 June 1886 reported “Anstey-Huey Nuptials: A pleasant social event occurred last evening in the South Ward. Alfred H Anstey son of Henry Anstey, and Miss Ellis Hoey, were united in marriage at the residence of the bride’s father Bernard W. Hoey, third and Franklin Streets… Mr and Mrs Anstey will take up their residence in this city“. They had children:

  • Alfred Bernard Anstey (b 7 April 1887 baptised 17 April 1887 at the Immaculate Heart of Mary (Chester), Delaware to parents “Alfred John Ansty and Ellinor M. Hoey“. In the 1910 American Census he was single and living with his first cousin Laura Burke and her husband (see above) at Chester Ward 4; he was a “pattern maker at a steel foundry“. He married Agnes in c1914 and they had children George Anstey (b 1915); Hannah E. Anstey (b 1916); John Anstey (b 1920); and Richard Anstey (b 1925). In the June 1917 Draft Registration for World War One, Alfred was a “pattern maker for Seaboard Steel Casting Co” (a position he acquired in July 1912) living at 1417 West 1st Chester, Delaware and “married with a wife and two children under 12“. In the 1920 Census they were living at Chester Ward 9 Delaware where Alfred was still a “pattern maker at a steel mill“. By the 1940 Census they were living at Sharon Hill Ward 2 Delaware where Alfred was still a pattern maker. Alfred Bernard Anstey was still alive in 1942 where he appears in the World War Two Registration Cards in Pennsylvania); and
  • Hannah Anstey (b 1889, married William Shields in 1911 – the ‘Delaware County Daily Times‘ on 25 October 1911 reported “William Shields of 1717 West 3rd Street, a well known grocer, and Miss Hannah Anstey, of 1823 West 3rd Street, will be united in the Holy Bonds of matrimony in Wilmington this afternoon…the couple will be attended by Alfred Anstey, a brother of the bride…Upon their return they will immediately go to their new home recently erected at fifth and Lloyd Street by the groom…“)

Alfred John Anstey was a “ship carpenter” in Chester in 1891. His wife died on 9 December 1891 aged 28, buried at Saint Michaels Roman Catholic Cemetery, Chester, Delaware County so in 1898 Alfred remarried Miss Mary E. Norr, the ‘Chester Times‘ reporting on 13 May 1898 “ALFRED ANSTEY MARRIED: A number of Chester people went to Elizabeth New Jersey on Wednesday to be present at the marriage of Alfred Anstey, son of Henry Anstey, one of the city’s assessors. Mr Anstey, who was formerly a Chester boy, having learned his trade in Roach’s Joiner Shop, is now in charge of the joiners shop at Nixon’s shipyard in Elizabeth. The bride was Miss Mary Norr, a well known and popular young lady of Elizabeth…Among the guests present from Chester were Mr and Mrs Henry D. Anstey, Mr and Mrs Hiederhofer, Mr and Mrs William Sparks, Mr and Mrs Deakyne, Miss Laura Anstey, Mrs Alfred Anstey Jnr and Miss Hannah Anstey“.

They had a son:

  • Charles Henry Anstey (b 29 September 1899 New Jersey, living with his parents in the 1910 American Census. In the September 1918 Draft Registration for World War One, Charles noted that he was a student at Batlin High School, living at 143 Reid Street, Elizabeth, Union, New Jersey. In 1920 he was an “office boy” at a bank in New Jersey, living with his parents. On 30 December 1933 in Manhattan he married Isabel B. Herer (b 1910 New York). By the 1940 Census they were living (without children) at Union Township, New Jersey where Charles H. Anstey was an “assistant treasurer“. Charles Henry Anstey died on 13 November 1994 in New Jersey)

The family were living in Precinct 2 Elizabeth City Ward 4, Union, New Jersey in the 1900 Census and they were living at Elizabeth Ward 4 Union New Jersey in the 1910 American Census. In 1915 they were living at Shrewsbury Township, Monmouth, New Jersey. In 1918 they were living at 143 Reid Street, Elizabeth, Union, New Jersey. They were still there in the 1920 Census where Alfred John Anstey was a joiner at a shipyard.

By the 1940 Census Alfred John Anstey was a widower living at Union Township, New Jersey with his son Charles.

Further Details on the Chester, Pennsylvania Ansteys

We are actively on the lookout for Chester, PA Anstey experts alive today who are willing to add their findings and knowledge to this project. We are particularly interested in research regarding Chester, PA Ansteys who fought in World War One, preferably with personal souvenirs such as letters sent by the soldiers or military photos etc. 

Anybody who has such expertise and inclination, please contact us at research@theansteystory.com.

We have already uploaded bits of information and documentation about the Chester, PA Ansteys, and continue to upload more all the time (see Project Updates), however it is spread over various segments of the website.

The best way to find said information is to enter ‘Chester, PA’ in the search box at the bottom of this page and a list of relevant pages will appear.

Anybody who finds any mistakes on this page, please contact us at research@theansteystory.com and we will correct it.

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