Thomas Anstee (IV 10)

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

IV 10. Thomas Anstee: He was born in 1857 in Kempston to parents John Anstee (IV 4) and Ellen Harbin. He was a “miller” living in Kempston in the 1871 Census. He married Charlotte Folkes in 1875 in Kempston having children in (mostly) Cranfield:

  • Arthur John Anstee (IV 14 – b 1875 Kempston);
  • Thomas Anstee (IV 15 – b 1876 Addle, Wharfdale, Yorkshire);
  • Gertrude Annie Anstee (b 1879, died before 1891);
  • Fred Anstee (b 1882, Cranfield not to be confused with Fred Anstee. He was a carpenter in the 1901 Census and a farmers son working on the family farm in the 1911 Census – he sent a wreath to his brother Arthur (IV 14)‘s funeral in 1937);
  • James Anstee (b 1884, died an infant);
  • Della Gertrude Anstee (b 1885, the ‘Bedfordshire Mercury‘ on 25 June 1909 reported “CRANFIELD. MISS D. G. ANSTEE’S WEDDING. The marriage of Miss Della Gertrude Anstee, eldest daughter of Mr and Mrs Thomas Anstee, of College and Hill Green Farms, Cranfield, to William Rogers, second son of Mr and Mrs Wm. Rogers, of Howard House…“. She attended her brother Arthur’s funeral in 1937.); and
  • Hilda May Anstee (b 1895, living with parents in the 1911 Census. She married John E. Turvey in 1919 in Ampthill; she attended her brother Arthur (IV 14)‘s funeral in 1937).

In 1881 the family were in Cranfield, where he was a corn miller and his wife a lace maker. The ‘Bedfordshire Times and Independent‘ 21 May 1887 reported “INQUEST -On Friday, the 13th, an inquest was held at the Swan Inn on the body of a newly-born infant, which was found the day previous in a pond near Mr. Anstee’s steam mill on the Astwood road. From the evidence of the Messrs. Wm [IV 11]. and Thomas Anstee, it appears they found a package on the side of the pond, and on opening it found the body of the child, which was trussed up like a fowl. From the evidence of Dr. Milligan , it appeared the child had never had a separate existence, consequently the jury found a verdict of Found Dead. Mr. James Superintendent of Police, was present; and from the way the body was done up and the material used the Jury were of opinion that it had been deposited in the pond by some travelling gypsies

The ‘Bedfordshire Mercury‘ on 29 July 1893 reported “Mr and Mrs Thomas Anstee, of Broad Green, also met with accident being thrown out of their pony cart on the Kempston Road; fortunately beyond severe shaking no one was injured and no damage was done to either pony or cart“. 

In 1898 a child which had just been run over and was very seriously injured was brought to his house in Cranfield – his wife Charlotte gave the child some brandy and water but it died five minutes later.

In the 1901 Census the family was living at Broad Green, Cranfield where he was a “corn miller“. They were at College Farm Bourne End Cranfield in the 1911 Census where he was a farmer.

The ‘Bedfordshire Times and Independent‘ 23 January 1920 reported “S. D. HANDLEY V. THOS. ANSTEE. The parties are well-known farmers, the plaintiff living at Kempston and defendant at Bourne End, Cranfield. The action was for alleged breach of warranty of a cart filly sold by defendant to plaintiff for £100, the warranty being that she was “quiet and a good worker.” The loss by resale by auction was £51 14s.. and other expenses brought the claim up to £57 10s. Mr. Eales, instructed by Mr. Farr, was for plaintiff, and Mr. Wills, instructed by Sharman and Trethewy, for defendant. Plaintiff said on May 22 he went to see defendant at Cranfield, and told him he wanted a horse which would be no trouble, as he had lost a man to the Army, and one which was ready broken, quiet, and so on. Defendant showed him this horse, which he said was perfectly quiet. He asked him several times if she kicked and Anstee replied “Oh dear, no.” Anstee asked £100 for her; plaintiff said it was stiff. Anstee again assured him it was perfectly quiet and it had never done anything wrong. It was brought over and paid for the next day. On May 24 it was taken to plough between two others, and it was not long before she began to lie on the chains and give trouble. She was tried in shafts the next day. At almost every turn she squealed and offered to kick. After half an hour she was taken out. On the 29th she was put to plough again with two others, single line, and she behaved similarly, breaking the spreader. On June 5 he determined to have a day with her. She would not move in the chains: he changed her position, but she kicked practically all day and injured herself. He saw Mr. Anstee who agreed to see the filly and give her a trial, but later refused to do so. Saying that as he had given no warranty he would have no more to do with her.-By Mr. Wills: It was fourteen days after he had the filly when he complained to defendant. It was sold by auction to a dealer as in dispute. Mr. Bishop and Mr. Griggs, who assisted Mr. Handley, described in rather more vivid language the filly’s alleged delingquencies when put to work. The latter said she showed a vicious temper. Defendant said he bred the filly and she was just rising four. She was turned ont until November, and after then helped in every job until he sold her. She had never given him any trouble. He told Mr. Handley what the filly had done. Mr. Handley had a good look at her, and said he wanted her for immediate work. He told Mr. Handley that he would not warrant any animal at that age.-By Mr. Eales: He believed she was a quiet and good worker, and would not be worth £100 unless she was. John Wooding, horsekeeper, said the only misbehavior of the filly was when she had her first full set of shoes put on. Thomas Anstee. Junior corroborated his father’s evidence as to the conversation when the filly was sold. Mr.H. Hawkes, farmer, said he offered Anstee £100 for the filly. with no mention of warranty, and while he was waiting for Mr. Anstee’s reply plaintiff bought it. Mr. Turvey and Mr. Walter Common gave the filly a good character as perfectly quiet and a good worker. Judgment for defendant.

He died in 1928 still living at Broad Green, Cranfield.

His widow Charlotte died in January 1937. The ‘Bedfordshire Times and Independent‘ on 15 January 1937 wrote “Funeral at Cranfield Parish Church: The death of Mrs Charlotte Anstee, widow of Mr Thomas Anstee of College Farm Bourne End, Cranfield took place at the home of her son Mr Arthur Anstee on 6 January, at the age of 79…The mourners were Mr Fred Anstee, Mrs Rogers (son and daughter), Mr Jack Anstee (IV 23), Mrs Turney, Mr William Anstee, Mrs Wilson (grandchildren) Walter Anstee (nephew)..Owing to illness Mr Arthur Anstee (son) was unable to attend

Anybody who can add anything to this account, or finds any mistakes on this page, please contact us at research@theansteystory.com.

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