The Flamstead Anstees

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

Many thanks to Marsha Stringer for her help in constructing this pedigree.

Flamstead Anstees Overview

The Flamstead Anstees of Hertfordshire are certainly a sub-branch of the Swanbourne Ansteys of Buckinghamshire, however we have not yet completely mapped out this connection. One of the early Flamstead Anstee families is certainly from Houghton Regis – the other one we are not so sure.

The current status of our research into the Flamstead Anstees is as follows (note: We include Markyate and Trowley Bottom in this sub-branch):

John Anstee and Mary Ringshall of Trowley Bottom

The earliest Flamstead Anstees we find are John Anstee of Trowley Bottom, Flamstead, Hertford, and Mary his wife (late Mary Ringshall, spinster, daughter of Jeremiah Ringshall late of Markyate Street, Studham, Bedford per the 1778 Hertfordshire Court Roll reference DE/FL/15828). They were certainly married by 1753, though we cannot currently locate the marriage entry (“Copy of Court Roll Description: Admission of Mary, wife of John Anstee of Trowley Bottom, Flamstead, to Grovefield Close on the surrender of Alexander Goodall Date: 28 June 1753“). We also do not currently know from whence John came before Flamstead. John and Mary had at least one son, being John Anstee (b 1763 Flamstead – 1799 Flamstead) who married first Sarah Marks in 1781 in Flamstead. They had children:

  • Susannah Anstee (b 1783); and
  • Benjamin Anstee (b 1784 Flamstead – he married Jane and moved to Ivinghoe, then Tring and later Kempston – see the Ivinghoe Anstees for more on Benjamin).

Then Sarah died, so John Anstee (b 1763) next married Mary Robinson in 1788 in Flamstead, having children:

  • Hannah Anstee (b 1789 Flamstead, married in 1810 in Luton);
  • James Anstee (b 1791 Flamstead, he married Sophia Mary Dell (known as Mary) on 10 January 1816 in Flamstead and they had children in Flamstead William Anstee (b 1818, baptised 12 July 1818 in Flamstead, married Catherine Hooker on 18 May 1844 in Flamstead having a daughter Phoebe Anstee (b 1847, a pauper at Redbourne Road Union Workhouse in Hemel Hempstead in 1871 and still a pauper and straw plaiter at the workhouse in 1881, still unmarried). In the 1861 Census William Anstee was widowed, living as an agricultural labourer with his daughter in Flamstead); Thomas Anstee (b 1819 – see below); George Anstee (b 1824, died 1830); Hannah Jane Anstee (b 1825, married Joseph Flitton on 25 April 1846 in Flamstead and emigrated to America in 1868, settling in Utah); Mary Anstee (b 1828); and Daniel Anstee (b 1837 – see below). In the 1841 Census the family were living in Flamstead – James was an agricultural labourer. James Anstee died in 1869 in Flamstead);
  • Jeremiah Anstee (b 1793 Flamstead);
  • William Anstee (b 1793 Flamstead);
  • William Anstee (b 1798 Flamstead)

Note: We can be confident that John Anstee (b 1763) is son of John Anstee of Trowley Bottom, Flamstead, and Mary Ringshall, given that her father was ‘Jeremiah’ and he named a son Jeremiah (b 1793). See ‘Further Details‘ below for more on the Anstee/Ringshall connection in the Court Rolls.

Joseph Anstee and Fanny Gurney of Houghton Regis

A separate Anstee family arrived in Flamstead from Houghton Regis in c1785. This family was headed by Joseph Anstee (b 1754 in Leigh near Prittlewell, Essex, son of Joseph Anstee Junior – see the Houghton Regis page for more). Joseph married Francis (Fanny) Gurney (daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Gurney) in 1776 in Chalgrave, Bedfordshire. They lived in Houghton Regis for a while and then moved to Flamstead in c1785 and later Edlesborough by 1798. Joseph Anstee and Fanny had children:

  • Joseph Anstee (b 1778 Houghton Regis, was a miller living in Edlesborough in 1798. In the ‘Northampton Mercury‘ on 10 May 1806 appears “Notice is hereby given that the partnership of Joseph and Richard Anstee of Edlesborough Mill (near Dunstable, Beds) in the county of Bucks is DISSOLVED and that they henceforth will have no further connection in any kind of business – signed the 8th day of May 1806 Joseph Anstee, Richard Anstee“. Despite being the same age they were actually uncle and nephew. In the ‘Northampton Mercury‘ on 4 February 1809 appears an insolvency notice “ANSTEES INSOLVENCY. Whereas Joseph Anstee, late of Edlesborough in the county of Buckinghamshire miller and now of Dunstable, Baker, hath made an assignment of all his effects to Mr Grey Arnold and Mr John Wake for the benefits of themselves and the rest of his creditors…”. In November 1824, Joseph went to prison to serve “six months hard labour” for the offence of “Want of Sureties“, still living in Edlesborough (his birth year was given as 1779). He died in 1849, buried in Edlesborough (though here his birth year was given as 1775). Joseph Anstee likely did not marry [Note: For the ‘Joseph Anstee‘ who married Elizabeth Puddefoot in 1811 in Edlesborough see the Edlesborough Anstees page]);
  • Mary Anstee (b 1781 Houghton Regis);
  • Elizabeth Anstee (b 1783 Houghton Regis);
  • Francis Anstee (b 1784 Houghton Regis);
  • Benjamin Anstee (b 1786 Flamstead);
  • Sarah Anstee (b 1787 Flamstead, married Moses Jeffery, a baker of Toddington, in 1803 in Caddington, at which time she was ‘of Caddington‘. Surety was provided by her brother Joseph Ansteeof Edlesborough‘);
  • Mathew Anstee (b 10 March 1789 Dunstable/Houghton Regis to “Josh Anstee and Frances“, died an infant?);
  • John [James] Anstee (b 1790 Flamstead – see below);
  • Mathew Anstee (b 26 December 1791 Flamstead, registered May 1809 as a non-Conformist and then married Esther Pearson in Eaton Bray, Bedford in October 1809. They had sons William Anstee (b 1810 in Edlesborough) and John Anstee (b 1817 in Edelsborough, baptised 30 November 1817 in Edlesborough – not to be confused with John Anstee (b 1795, baptised 1817 in Edlesborough, who is an Edlesborough Anstee). John Anstee (b 1817) very likely married Margaret Costello in Marylebone – see his son William Anstee for more). Mathew Anstee was a labourer in Edlesborough in 1817)

In the 1798 ‘Buckinghamshire Posse Comitatus‘ both Joseph Anstee (Senior) and his son Joseph Anstee (Junior) were millers in Edlesborough – the entire family had clearly moved there by this time.

John James Anstee (b 1790 Flamstead or Cripplegate)

John James Anstee (also James John Anstee) was born on 20 November 1790 in either Flamstead or Cripplegate (sources differ) to parents Joseph Anstee and Francis (Fanny) Gurney. He was registered in May 1809 as a non-Conformist. He married Harriet (possibly Townshend and probably Tulley – b c1790 Norfolk) in c1812 and they had children:

  • Elizabeth Anstee (b 14 November 1812 Bermondsey, baptised 20 December 1812 to “John Anstee and Harriet“. In the 1841 Census she was a dressmaker living with her parents at Ossulston Street, St Pancras); and
  • James John Anstee (b q4 1837 Camden Town/St Pancras to mother “Tulley“. In the 1841 Census he was living with his parents. By the 1851 Census he was living with his aunt and uncle ‘Townshend‘ at King Street, New Buckenham. On 27 April 1862 he married Emma Napthan [Napthen] in Great Yarmouth and they had children in Guiltcross, East Harling, Norfolk Harriet Mary Anstee (b 1863, known as Polly); Percy Townshend Anstee (b 1865 – see below); Caroline Ella Anstee (b 1866); Arthur Anstee (b 1868, married Sarah Ann Pearson on 28 December 1896 in Cambridge St Barnabus – at the time of his marriage he was a “railway checker of St James Grimsby“, father confirmed as James John Anstee – they had a single daughter Decima Lavinia Phyllis Anstee (b 1893 Cambridge, never married? and died in 1969 in Grimsby as “Anstee or Pearson“). The family were living at 25 Duchess Street Grimsby in both the 1901 and 1911 Census where Arthur was a railway foreman); and Elizabeth Anstee (b 1873, died 1877 – the ‘Bury Free Press‘ 09 June 1877 reported “Deaths: Anstee 4th inst at East Harling aged 3 years Elizabeth, youngest child of the late Mr James Anstee“). In 1865 James John Anstee was a harness maker in East Harling, Guiltcross. James John Anstee died in Guiltcross in 1874 and in the 1881 Census the rest of the family were living at White Hart Street, East Harling, Guiltcross. Emma Anstee died in Guiltcross in 1894, the ‘Norwich Mercury‘ 03 November 1894 edition reporting “Sudden Death: Much sorrow was expressed in the parish [of East Harling] on Friday when it became known that Mrs Anstee, a widow lady, had been found lying dead in her bed at her residence in White Hart Street…“)

John James Anstee was a baker and confectioner. In the 1841 Census the family were living at Ossulston Street, St Pancras where John Anstee was a baker and Harriet Anstee was a dressmaker. John Anstee died in 1850 “age 61“, buried at St Martin in the Field on 29 September 1850. In the 1851 Census Harriet Anstee was a servant and a widow living at Penton Street, Clerkenwell – she died in 1855, also buried at St Martin in the Field on 6 June 1855.

Thomas Anstee (b 1819 Flamstead)

Thomas Anstee was born in 1819 in Flamstead to parents James Anstee and Sophia Mary Dell. He married Catherine Bandy in 1844 in Flamstead and they had children in Flamstead/Markyate:

  • George Anstee (b 1844, married Jane Dell (b 1846 Caddington) in Caddington on 5 April 1869 and they had children Montague George Anstee (b 19 August 1870 St Albans, known as George, attended Armitage Street School, Manchester in 1877. He married Clara Southern [Sotheron] in 1891 at St James The Less, Ancoats, Manchester, at which time he was a “21 year old carter and bachelor living at 97 Henry Street“); Lillie Eleanor Anstee (b 1873 St Albans, married Walter Harrow and they were living in 395, Collyhurst Road, Manchester in the 1901 Census with her mother Jane (widow) and siblings); Levi Ernest Anstee (b 1875 Manchester, married Clara Sage in c1894 having children Ernest Harold Anstee (b 1894 Chorlton) and Lilian Anstee (b 1901 Salford). In the 1901 Census they were at 61, Kara Street, Pendleton, Salford where Levi was a ship canal carter and by the 1911 Census they were at 11 Jobling Street, North Manchester – he was a railway quarryman?); Charles Flemm [Fleming] Anstee (b 1878 Manchester, living with his sister Lillie in Manchester in the 1901 Census. He married Annie Bellinger on 13 April 1903 in Manchester and in the 1911 Census he was a bleachworks labourer living at 5 Greave Fold Romiley Stockport); Margaret May Anstee (b 1880 Manchester, known as May, living with her sister Lillie in Manchester in the 1901 Census and an unmarried machinist living with her mother in the 1911 Census). In the 1881 Census the family was living at 49, Woodward Street, Manchester where George was a carter. In 1898 according to the ‘Poor Law Assessments’ George and Jane were at Collyhurst Road. George Anstee died later in 1898 in Manchester “aged 53“. By the 1911 Census Jane Anstee (widow) was a milliner living with her daughter May at 37 Knightley St Rochdale Road Manchester);
  • Thomas Anstee (b 1846 – see below);
  • Eliza Anstee (b 1848, had an illegitimate daughter Flora Anstee (b 1872, baptised 10 May 1874 in Markyate, married Thomas Allen on 30 September 1893 in Markyate and by 1911 they were living at 164 Wellington St Luton together with Flora‘s uncle Arthur Anstee));
  • Caroline Anstee (b 1851);
  • Frederick Charles Anstee (b 1853, married Jane Howell in c1879 and in the 1881 Census they were living at Hadley Gate, Monken [Monkton] Hadley, Barnet where Frederick was a “tailor’s cutter born in Markyate, Herts“. They had children Frederick Charles Anstee (b 1879 Barnet, died an infant); Alice Jane Anstee (b 1883 Barnet, living with parents in the 1911 Census) and Ada Elizabeth Anstee (b 1887 Barnet, living with parents in the 1911 Census). In the 1911 Census the family were living at 192 and 194 High Street Barnet where Frederick was a tailor and outfitter. Frederick Charles Anstee died on 17 May 1935 living at 25 Strafford Road Barnet – probate to Herbert Ephraim Elliot Hewes (who was born in 1903 to mother ‘Howell’, probably son of Jane’s sister Emma));
  • Henry Anstee (b 1855, married Sarah Ann Chalkley in Kings Walden on 30 March 1881 (father confirmed as ‘Thomas Anstee’) and they had children in Luton Walter William Anstee (b 1881 – see below); and Rhoda Elizabeth Anstee (b 1883 Markyate, married Aaron Beecroft in Luton in 1904 and was living at Watling Street Radlett, Aldenham in the 1911 Census with her family and mother). In the 1891 Census Henry was a coal miner living with his family at Victoria Street, Mansfield. Henry Anstee died in 1903 in Mansfield “aged 47” and in the 1911 Census his widow Sarah Ann Anstee was living with her daughter Rhoda at Watling Street Radlett, Aldenham);
  • Josiah Anstee (b 1857, died in 1858)
  • Albert Anstee (b 1860, a gardener living with his family in the 1881 Census. He married Elizabeth Spacey in q2 1881 in Luton and they had children Annie Anstee (b 1887 Markyate, a straw hat finisher in 1901); George Anstee (b 1888 Luton, an assistant cowboy in 1901); and one other (died by 1911). In the 1891 Census Albert was a straw hat blocker living at Woodside Road, Caddington; by 1901 they were at Upper Woodside, Caddington and in the 1911 Census Albert (as Alfred) and Elizabeth were at 47 Manor Path Castle Street Luton – he was a machinist at a straw hat business);
  • Sarah Ann Anstee (b 1863, died an infant)
  • Jane Anstee (b 1864, died in 1866)
  • Arthur Anstee (b 1867 – an Anstey Hero); and
  • Emily Anstee (b 1871)

In the 1851 Census the family were in Flamstead – Thomas Anstee was an agricultural labourer. By the 1861 Census they were at Brittannia, Flamstead, Hemel Hempstead – most of the family were “straw plaiters“. By the 1871 Census the family were living at Markyate Street, Humbershoe, Luton and they were still there in the 1881 Census. Thomas Anstee died in 1890 in Luton “aged 70“.

Daniel Anstee (b 1837 Flamstead)

Daniel Anstee was born in 1837, baptised 20 October 1837 in Flamstead, to parents James Anstee and Sophia Mary Dell. By 1851 he was already a straw plaiter living with his parents in Flamstead. He married Mary Ann Burgess on 17 March 1860 in Flamstead having children:

  • Arthur Anstee (b 1861 Flamstead, married Emma Parkins on 5 August 1878 in Luton and they had children in Luton Bertha Anstee (b 1878, alive in 1891); Florence Amelia Anstee (b 1879, died an infant); Arthur Edward Anstee (b 1881 aka Edwin – an Anstey Hero); Florence May Anstee (b 1882, a straw hat machinist living with her parents in the 1911 Census); Eli Elisha Anstee (b 1892, a straw hat machinist living with his parents in the 1911 Census); Olive [Olivia] Maud Anstee (b 1898, living with her parents in the 1911 Census); and one other. At the time of the birth of their son Arthur Edward Anstee in 1881, the family were living at 33 Ebenezer Street, Luton – Emma was illiterate, signing the birth certificate with an ‘X’ and Arthur was a “blocker“. In the 1891 and 1901 censuses Arthur was a blocker’s labourer living at 1, Duke Street, Luton and in the 1911 Census he was a straw hat machinist living with his family at 6 Belmont Road Luton. Arthur died in 1946 in Luton);
  • Jane Anstee (b 1867 Flamstead or Luton, sources differ, probably alive in 1911);
  • John Anstee (b 1869 Luton, died 1871)
  • Elizabeth Anstee (b 1874 Luton known as Eliza, alive in 1891 and probably alive in 1911);
  • Fred Anstee (b 1875 Luton, baptised 28 April 1881 in Luton, married Annie Elizabeth Foster in 1896 in Luton and they had children in Luton Hilda Annie Anstee (b 1898 to mother ‘Foster’, living with her mother in 1911 – see below); Frederick Charles Anstee (b 1899 – an Anstey Hero, living with his father in 1911 – see below); Percy William Anstee (b 1905 to mother ‘Forster’, living with his father in 1911 – see below); and Claud Harold Anstee (b 1908 to mother ‘Foster’, living with his mother in 1911 – see below). In the 1901 Census Frederick was a straw hat blocker living with his family (including Annie Elizabeth) at 67, Hastings Street, Luton. In around 1908 or so Fred and Annie must have divorced (or split up) because in the 1911 Census Fred Anstee, still a straw hat blocker, was living at 24 Milton Road Luton with a ‘new’ wife Ellen Mary Anstee (b 1876 Luton – the 1911 Census says they married in 1898? and had 2 children? which cannot be correct – we cannot locate any marriage) and two of his ‘Anstee’ children Frederick and Percy. Annie Elizabeth, his wife, remarried Frederick William Turvey in 1908 (per the 1911 Census, we cannot locate that marriage) and was living with him at 34 Gee Street EC, St Luke, London in the 1911 Census with the other two ‘Anstee’ children Hilda and Claud);
  • Rose Anstee (b 1878, died an infant)
  • Edward [Edwin] Anstee (b 1879 Luton – an Anstey Hero); and
  • Horace Anstee (b 1882 Luton – an Anstey Hero)

In the 1861 Census the family were living at Wheat Sheaf, Flamstead where Daniel Anstee was a bonnet blocker. By 1871 the family were living at 64 Windsor Street, Luton – Daniel Anstee was still a blocker and in 1881 they were still living there, Daniel was a straw hat blocker. Daniel Anstee died in 1889 in Luton aged 51.

By the 1891 Census Mary Ann Anstee (widow and a straw hat sewer) and her children were living at Duke Street, Luton. By 1901 Mary Ann Anstee was living with her youngest son Horace at 35, Elizabeth Street, Luton, still a straw hat sewer. By the 1911 Census she was living at 53 Hastings Street Luton

Thomas Anstee (b 1846 Flamstead)

Thomas Anstee was born in 1846 in Flamstead to parents Thomas Anstee and Catherine Bandy. He married Sarah Reid in East Hyde, Harpenden in 1870 and they moved to Kingsbourne Green, Harpenden, St Albans where they had children:

By 1881 the family were living at The Common (Coleswood), Harpenden and by 1891 Thomas Anstee was a “cowman and domestic gardener” still living at Harpenden Common, Harpenden. Sarah Anstee (wife) died in 1897 in St Albans so Thomas Anstee remarried Lingerie? Hemmings in c1900 having further children in Harpenden:

  • Ruth Catherine Anstee (b 1900, living with family in the 1911 Census);
  • Leonard Thomas Anstee (b 1905, died in 1909); and
  • Beatrice May Anstee (b 1907, living with family in the 1911 Census).

In the 1911 Census Thomas Anstee was a “jobbing gardener” living with his family at Luton Road Harpenden – he died in 1923 in St Albans.

Percy Townshend Anstee (b 1865 Guiltcross)

Percy Townshend Anstee was born on 15 March 1865 in Guiltcross, Norfolk, baptised 21 January 1866 in East Harling, to parents James John Anstee and Emma Napthan [Napthen]. On 7 March 1883 he signed up for 12 years of service with the Royal Fusiliers City of London Regiment (Service Number: 855). On his Attestation Form he noted that he was already serving with the 5th Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers. At the time of Enlistment he was working as a groom. Despite fighting in no campaigns and earning no medals, he served in the following locations as a Private and Drummer, and later Lance Corporal:

  • In UK from 7 March 1883 to 12 December 1884
  • Appointed Drummer 26 November 1884
  • Gibraltar from 13 December 1884 to 13 December 1885
  • Egypt from 14 December 1885 to 23 June 1887
  • Appointed Lance Corporal 20 October 1887
  • ? 24 June 1887 to 21 April 1888
  • Horse Guards 12 April 1888
  • Transferred to Section C ‘First Class Army Reserve’ on 21 April 1888 (at both Private then Lance Corporal)
  • Transferred to Section B ‘First Class Army Reserve’ on 7 March 1890 until discharge on 6 March 1893

On 2 December 1888 Percy Townshend Anstee married Sarah Brown (b 1849 Pancras) at the Parish Church in St Pancras and they had children:

In the 1901 Census the family were living at 55, Keppel Mews North, St Giles in the Fields where Percy was a horse foreman. He died the following year in St Pancras aged 37. By the 1911 Census, Sarah Anstee, a widow and “duster” was living with her two children at 9 Euston Building St Pancras.

Walter William Anstee (b 1881 Luton)

Walter William Anstee was born in 1881 in Dunstable, Luton to parents Henry Anstee and Sarah Ann Chalkley. He married Annie Duffield (b 1882 South Normanton) in 1901 at Mansfield Wesleyan Chapel, having children in Mansfield/South Normanton.

  • Walter Anstee (b 1901, living with parents in the 1911 Census. He died in Mansfield in 1953);
  • Ernest Anstee (b 1902, died in 1908);
  • Percy Anstee (b 1905, living with parents in the 1911 Census. He died in 1984 in Mansfield);
  • Cyril Anstee (b 1911);
  • Wilfred Anstee (b 1914, died in Mansfield in 1972);
  • Sydney Anstee (b 1916, died in 1990 in Mansfield);
  • Kathleen M. Anstee (b 1917); and
  • Vera E. Anstee (b 1924)

In the 1901 Census Walter was a coal miner living with his ‘Duffield’ in laws at West Street, South Normanton and in the 1911 Census the family were living at 93 Victoria Street Mansfield where Walter was a “traveller“. Annie Anstee died in Mansfield in 1940. The ‘Nottingham Journal‘ on 11 April 1949 reported “DETAINED IN HIS OWN INTERESTS” After Det-lnsp. A. Bramley had stated it was in his own interests he should be detained, Walter William Anstee (68). an old age pensioner, of 63 Rutland-street, Mansfield, was at Mansfield on Saturday remanded in custody until Wednesday accused of indecent assault on a five year old girl last Thursday“. The ‘Retford, Gainsborough & Worksop Times’ on 23 December 1966 reported “Finding two cases of indecent assault against young girls proved Retford Magistrates on Thursday last week remanded Walter William Anstee (85) of ‘Oaklands’ London Road Retford for three weeks for reports

Walter William Anstee died in Mansfield in 1977.

Further Details on the Flamstead Anstees

We have already uploaded bits of information and documentation about the Flamstead Anstees, 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 ‘Flamstead’ in the search box at the bottom of this page and a list of relevant pages will appear.

We are actively on the lookout for Flamstead Anstees alive today who are willing to add their Anstey research to this project. We are especially interested in connecting the early Flamstead pedigree to the Swanbourne Anstey pedigree.

Anybody who has already researched this sub-branch, please contact us at

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