John Anstee (PO 6)

See ‘Anstey: A Complete History From the Norman Invasion to World War One‘ for much more on the Potsgrove Anstees. 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 Potsgrove Anstees fit into the pedigree descendent from Hubert de Anesti, the 12th century originator of the ‘Anstey’ surname.

PO 6. John Anstee: He was born in c1813 in Coventry (or possibly Harborne, Bedfordshire – see below) to father Edward Anstee (PO 2). The ‘Coventry Herald‘ 16 April 1841 reported “John Anstey was held to bail to keep the peace for three months towards Sarah Turner.” then five months later on 22 September 1841 he formally married her in Coventry St John the Baptist (where his father was confirmed as “Edward Anstey“ – her father was called ‘Hercules’, which is how that name entered the Anstey family) – he was a “boot closer of Spon Street” at the time of his marriage.

They had a fairly large family in Coventry, two of whom were born before they officially married, being:

  • John Turner Anstey (PO 14 – b 1835);
  • Hercules Turner Anstey (b 1839, must have died young?);
  • Martha Anstey (b 1843);
  • William Anstey (b 1845, a boot closer in the 1861 Census. He married Sarah (Rice?) in 1875 in Coventry and in the 1881 Census he was a cordwainer living with her at 14, Ct 4 Much Park Street, Coventry. By the 1911 Census he was a widower and boot closer living alone at 4 in 14 Court Much Park Street Coventry – he died on 25 April 1917 a “workhouse death” (Much Park Street Workhouse) “buried by friends or family” at London Road Civic Cemetery);
  • Sarah Anstey (b 1847);
  • Fanny Frances Anstey (b 1847, known as Frances – a “silk filler” living with her parents in the 1881 Census. She never married and in the 1911 Census she was an inmate at the Coventry Union Workhouse, 11 London Road, “formerly silk filler ribbon trade“. She died in 1918, the ‘Coventry Standard‘ reporting on 30 August 1918 “Inquest into the death of Fanny Frances Anstee aged 70 years who formerly lived at 25 Much Park Street. She was admitted to the institution on August 28th and after going to a cupboard in the long room to fetch a ring she complained of pains in her head and fell to the ground. Evidence was given by Hercules Anstee [PO 15], a newsagent of 28 Far Gosford Street (the deceased’s brother) and Emma Ludford an inmate, who said deceased never moved after falling. Dr Coghill said deceased must have had latent heart disease and she died from syncope“);
  • Hercules Anstee (PO 15 – b 1850); and
  • Mary Ann Anstey (b 1851, died 1852).

In the 1851 & 1861 Censuses the family were living at St John Street Coventry St Michaels. The ‘Coventry Herald‘ 16 June 1871 “DRUNK AND DISORDERLY,-John Anstey, an old man, was charged with being drunk and disorderly at half-past two o’clock on Sunday morning in Much Park-street.-_P.S. Wood proved the charge.- The prisoner pleaded guilty, and was bound over in his own recognisances to keep the peace for three months, under a penalty of €10.

By the 1881 Census he was a ‘cordwainer’ living at Ct 10 HO, 25, Much Park Street, Coventry St Michael with St John. His wife Sarah was a “silk filler“. In the 1891 Census, he was an inmate at a workhouse – his birth details were given as “1810 in Harborne, Bedfordshire” rather than Coventry, which is certainly possible given some of his siblings were born around there. He died in 1894, buried at London Road Cemetery in Coventry “age 81” – his residence was given as “Workhouse, Coventry“.

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