The Aynho Ansteys

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

Overview of the Aynho Ansteys

The Aynho Ansteys of Northamptonshire are a sub-branch of the Souldern Ansteys of Oxfordshire, likely headed by Roger Anstee, who married in Aynho in 1730. Like the Souldern Ansteys, the Aynho Ansteys were Catholics.

Unfortunately, we are unable to find any parish register baptisms whatsoever in Aynho before 1813 – whether they exist or not we do not know. As such, we have to make certain deductions as to who was son of whom in order to construct the pedigree.

Early Aynho Entries

  • 1724: Mary Anstey married Thomas Betts (they remained in Aynho having a large family; Mary died in 1753)
  • 1730: Roger Anstee married Joanna Bull
  • 1756: Mary Anstey married Peter Edwards
  • 1761: Joanna Anstywife of Roger” buried
  • 1766: Richard Ansty married Mary Elliott (probably b 1742, died 1830 Aynho)
  • 1769: Susannah Ansty married Richard Chiltern
  • 1771: Richard Ansty appears on the Northamptonshire Militia List for “Aynho, King’s Sutton
  • 1772: Roger Anstey buried
  • 1792: William Anstey buried – there is also possibly mention of a connection with Woodstock)
  • 1800: Richard Anstey buried
  • 1802: Richard Anstey buried
  • 1812: John Anstey buried

From this, and given that parish register baptisms pre-1813 are unavailable, we can suppose that Richard Ansty (m 1766) was son of Roger Anstee and Joanna Bull (m 1730, Roger was clearly of the Souldern Ansteys, given his first name).

James Anstey (b 1774) and Thomas Anstey (b 1778) were presumably both sons of Richard Ansty and Mary Elliott.

James Anstey (b 1774)

James Anstey (b 1774 presumably in Aynho and presumably to parents Richard Ansty and Mary Elliott) married Mary Freestone in 1796 in Souldern. They had children:

  • Thomas Anstey (b 1797, died 1825)
  • Jonathon Anstey (b 1800, died 1824)
  • Richard Anstey (b 1802 Aynho (confirmed in 1851 Census), married Ann Richardson having daughters Fanny [Fransesca] Anstey (b 15 November 1833 Evesham, Worcestershire, baptised as a Catholic in Banbury St John the Evangelist on 20 April 1848 – she appeared to have an illegitimate daughter Anna Carolina Louisa Anstey (b 19 April 1854 Banbury, baptised in Leamington 19 September 1855)) and Elizabeth Anstey (b 29 November 1835 Warwick, baptised as a Catholic in Banbury St John the Evangelist on 20 April 1848). Richard was a general labourer living in Neithrop, Banbury, Oxfordshire with his family in the 1851 Census. Richard died in 1856 in Leamington and in the 1861 Census his widow Ann (retired straw bonnet maker), daughter Fanny (unmarried milliner) and granddaughter Anna were living at 21, New Street, Leamington Priors);
  • Joseph Anstey (b 1807?, married Martha Capell in 1832 in Aynho and had children Elizabeth Anstey (b 1834); Sarah Anstey (b 1836, unmarried in 1861 living in Aynho); Jonathon Anstey (b 1838, possibly received the ‘India General Service Medal‘ Service number: 626 Rank: Private Regiment: 1/7th Regiment Of Foot, though we can find no further details. He died in Aynho in 1878); Mary Ann Anstey (b 1841, the ‘Banbury Guardian‘ on 20 July 1854 “Inquests R. Westok, Esq.— Aynho, the body of Mary Anne Anstey, who died on 6th July, aged 13 years. Verdict, Effusion on the brain.”); Phoebe Anstey (b 1843, married in Brackley in 1865); Thomas George Anstey (b 1845, in January 1864 “James Garrett, George Stayton, and George Anstey, three boys, were charged with obstructing the footway at Aynho, part of the turnpike road, by standing thereon and throwing…” He married Jane Smith in Brackley in 1869 and they were living in Aynho in the 1871 Census); and Emma Anstey (b 1850). They were living with James Anstey (father) in Aynho in 1841. Joseph Anstey died in Aynho in 1850 “aged 43” and Martha (widow and pauper) was living in Aynho with some of her children – she was a “charwoman” living there still in 1861).

James Anstey (father) was a widower living alone in Aynho in 1851, a labourer at an alms house. He died in 1854 in Aynho.

Thomas Anstey (b 1778)

Thomas Anstey (born 1778 presumably in Aynho and presumably to parents Richard Ansty and Mary Elliott) married Ann Spencer (b 1775) in 1805 in Hinton in the Hedges. They returned to Aynho and had children:

  • Jane Anstey (b 1813);
  • Thomas Ansty (b 1815, died in 1818);
  • Elizabeth Anstey? (b 1816, living in Aynho in 1841)
  • James Ansty (b 1817, died in 1818)

Ann died in 1817 in Aynho, so Thomas Anstey remarried Elizabeth (probably Elizabeth Chamberlain in 1819 in Preston Capes, Byfield, Northamptonshire), having children:

  • James Anstey (b 1819, patriarch of the St Albans, Vermont Ansteys of America);
  • Emma Anstey? (b 1821, living in Aynho in 1841)
  • Caroline Ansty (b 1823, died 1825);
  • Charlotte Anstey (b 1825 – was living with her mother Elizabeth in Aynho in 1841, emigrated to New York, America in 1845 on the ship ‘James T. Ford‘ – which had probably arrived via/from Canada – see below)

Thomas Anstey (father) died in 1834 in Aynho.

Apart from a “John Ansty of Aynhoe charged with stealing a quantity of articles of clothing” in 1870, we find little mention of Ansteys in this parish after the 1871 Census. [Note: there is a “John Auster [Anstee]” living in the Workhouse, Banbury Road, Brackley St Peter as a pauper in the 1851 Census – he was born in Aynho but his age listed is very unclear]

Roger Anstee

The name ‘Roger‘ is extremely rare in the Anstey family – as such we can be fairly confident that any ‘Roger Anstee‘s belong to this sub-branch. All we have found thus far is firstly a burial of Roger Anstee on 22 November 1850 at St James the Less, Sulgrave aged 54 (ie born c1796).

Secondly we have a Roger Anstee (probably son of the above Roger Anstee) who was a Private with the 84th Foot Regiment (York and Lancaster) Service Number 2780 who in 1857/59 was awarded the ‘Indian Mutiny Medal‘ with a clasp for ‘Lucknow’ (the Indian Mutiny Medal was a campaign medal sanctioned by General Order No 363 dated 18th August, 1858 and No. 733 of 1859, to the troops and officers of British and Indian units who served in operations against the mutineers. This was the last medal issued by the ‘Honourable East India Company’).

Aynho Ansteys Shipped Abroad

According to the Banbury Museum website, a group of sixty farm labourers in Aynho were financed by their landlord William Cartwright to emigrate to (probably) Pilkington and Nichol townships in Wellington County, Ontario, Canada in 1845, leaving via Liverpool. This group consisted of:

  • William Libby [Tebby], his wife and four children;
  • John Turner, his wife and four children;
  • Francis Ansty, his wife and two children;
  • Andrew Homes, his wife and four children;
  • Benjamin Howes and family;
  • Joseph Goodwin, wife and five children;
  • George Bye, wife and five children;
  • James French, wife and seven children
  • Fanny French, Alfred Borton, William Giles, Rd Bygrave, David Peckova, John Watts and Charlotte Ansty (b 1825- see above)

It was the ‘Poor Law Amendment Act 1834’ which allowed this ‘supposed’ generosity, creating a mechanism by which public funds could be used to assist the poor to emigrate to a British Colony (and thus ridding the overseers of the parish of the problem of what to do with the paupers).

We would not be surprised if James Anstey (b 1819) also took advantage of this mechanism when he emigrated to St Albans, Vermont in America, though we have no evidence of that.

Further Details on the Aynho Ansteys

We have already uploaded bits of information and documentation about the Aynho Ansteys, and continue to upload more all the time (see Project Updates), however it is spread over various segments of the website. One way to find said information is to enter ‘Aynho’ 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 and we will correct it.

%d bloggers like this: