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Wisdom Smith

Eric Trudgill    -    6 September 2015

The Wisdom Smith in question was baptised in Wappenham, Northants in 1786 son of the famous Jasper, and younger brother of the Lucretia Smith I discussed in September 2014. He married Elizabeth Gentle in Shutford, Oxf in 1804 (both gypsies), jointly with his sister Honor Smith and Job Taylor, and christened the following children: John in Lower Lemington, Glos in 1807 (travellers); Harriet in Tysoe, Wks in 1809; James in Wigginton, Oxf in 1814; Emmanuel in S Newington, Oxf in 1816, who died two weeks later; Mary in Tredington, Wks in 1819 (chairbottom mender); William [Buckingham Billy] in Pillerton Hersey, Wks in 1821; Matilda in Horley, Oxf in 1824; Letitia in Kiddington, Oxf in 1827; and Isabella in Barford St Michael, Oxf in 1834. Let’s start with Wisdom’s daughters.

Harriet Smith married first Charles Hodgkins (see my article on Edward Hodgkins on this site in November 2011), and much later, in 1873, Charles Fletcher son of Henry and Catherine (see my article on Henry Fletcher in Romany Routes March 2014). Mary Smith married Jubal Smith son of Johnny Anchorn Smith (see my article on Johnny on this site September 2011). Letitia Smith married Charles Fletcher son of Henry and Catherine in 1852, 21 years before her sister Harriet. And Isabella Smith married Dennis Fletcher son of Henry and Catherine (for Letitia’s and Isabella’s children see my article on Henry Fletcher in Romany Routes). About Wisdom’s other daughter, Matilda Smith, all I can tell you is that she married James Smith son of Nathaniel in Swerford, Oxf in 1843. So let’s concentrate on Wisdom’s two sons we know to have had families, John and Buckingham Billy.

John Smith, Wisdom and Elizabeth’s son baptised in 1807, married an Ann (a Byles according to the gypsiologists, but “formerly Loveridge” on the birth certificate of her son Wisdom; perhaps she was both). Baptisms have been found for six of John and Ann’s children: Rissavoy in Wigginton in 1830, Ann junior in Deddington, Oxf in 1832, Sidnal (Sidney) in Wolford, Wks in 1834, Nathan in Tadmarton, Oxf in 1836; Shadrach in Tewkesbury, Glos in 1843, and Wisdom junior in Claines, Worcs in 1848. To these we can add Mary born about 1849 who married Render Green son of George in Buckland, Berks in 1869 (for their children see my article on George Green on this site in May 2012). The gypsiologists thought Wisdom and Ann also had a Samuel who married a Louisa Fletcher, but of this I’ve found no trace.

John Smith’s Rissavoy, baptised in 1830, married a Thomas Fletcher, and had the following Fletcher children: John christened in Welford, Glos in 1852; Ann christened in Haselor, Wks in 1854; Tienee christened in Studley, Wks in 1858; Damaris born in Alcester, Wks about 1861; a short-lived Wisdom born in 1867; and Shadrach christened in Boughton near Northampton, Northants in 1870. John Smith’s Sidnal, baptised in 1834, married Fiancy Smith (baptised in 1836 daughter of Aaron and Elizabeth) in 1867, and had the following children: Nathan christened in Buckingham, Bucks in 1853, who married Lementina Smith daughter of John and Keziah; Jabez christened in Neithrop, Oxf in 1857; George born in Mickleton, Glos about1858; Coralina born in Blockley, Worcs about 1860, who married her father’s cousin, William Smith; Sidney born about 1864; Samuel christened in Solihull, Wks in 1866, who allegedly married a Clara Fletcher; and Louisa christened in Daventry, Northants in 1870.

John Smith’s Nathan, baptised in 1836, married Diana Fletcher (baptised in 1837 daughter of the fore-mentioned Henry and Catherine), and had a Lamertine christened in Warwick St Nicholas in 1859, a Shadrach christened in Emscote, Wks in 1862, Alice, William and Wisdom born in Warwickshire between about 1865 and 1871, and Dennis christened in Emscote in 1874. John Smith’s Shadrach, baptised in 1843, married Emily Loveridge daughter of Thomas and Winifred in 1866, and had the following children: Isabella christened in Towcester, Northants in 1865, who married John Radden in 1883; Louisa christened in Towcester in 1869; Wisdom christened in Langham, Rutland in 1871; Reservir born in Northants about 1872, who married Edward Goodman in 1893; Mary and Shadrach born in Northants about 1874-78; Samuel born in Bucks about 1880; Emily christened in Brington, Hunts in 1883 (with her sister Mary), who married Francis Bosworth in 1919; and Florence and Eliza born in Northants about 1885-87. And John Smith’s Wisdom, baptised in 1848, married Edith Buckland, daughter of Tenant and Keziah, in 1872, and had the following children: Sophia born in Banbury, Oxf about 1879; Nelson born in Callington, Cambs about 1881; Nathan born in Naseby, Northants about 1884; and Wisdom jun born in Banbury about 1887.

Buckingham Billy Smith, Wisdom and Elizabeth’s son baptised in 1821, married a Charlotte. Baptisms have been found in Bucks for possibly all their children: Ansel in Buckingham St Peter & Paul in 1848; Arthur Albert in Preston Bissett in 1850; Affiance (male) in Tingewick in 1852; and Jabez, William, Coralina, Charlotte, Emily and Mary in Buckingham in 1855, 1858, 1861, 1863, 1865 and 1870 respectively. I’ve found no children for Arthur Albert, Affiance, Jabez and Emily. But I’ve done a little better with Ansel, William junior, Coralina, Charlotte junior and Mary.

Buckingham Billy Smith’s Ansel, baptised in 1848, married Rachel Woolhead in 1878, having had a Mary Ann Woolhead christened in Buckingham in 1871 and an Amy born in 1872.Buckingham Billy Smith’s William, baptised in 1858, married Coralina Smith (daughter of William’s cousin, Sidnal) in 1878, and had the following children: Jabez born in Bucks about 1879; Lementina born in Rutland about1884; Nathan christened in Buckingham in 1886; Louisa christened in Higham Ferrars, Northants in 1889; Mary born in Beds about 1891; and Rachel, William, Edith and Charles born in Bucks between about 1893 and 1903. Buckingham Billy Smith’s Coralina, baptised in 1861, married Thomas Inns in 1879, and had the following Inns children, all born in the Buckingham RD: Susan Charlotte in 1879 (who married William Halsey); Thomas Albert in 1883; Alice Mary in 1886 (who married George Houghton);Amy in 1890 (who married Jake Watts); Harry in 1893 (who married Elizabeth Houghton); Christina in1896 (who married Oswald Dyson); a short-lived Elsie May in 1899; and Michael in 1901 (who married Irene Dove).

Buckingham Billy Smith’s Charlotte, baptised in 1863, married Nelson Smith/Draper in 1884, and had the following Smith children: Abraham christened in Buckingham in 1887, Mary and Vertie born in Bucks about 1889, Rhoda and Caroline born in Hoo, Kent about 1898-1901, Violet born in Ash, Kent about 1901, and Nelson born in Yalding, Kent about 1904. And Buckingham Billy Smith’s Mary, baptised in 1870, married William Buckland (baptised in 1864 son of Abraham and Emily) in 1887, and had the following Buckland children: Abram born in Buckingham in 1887; Leonard born in Tisbury, Glos about 1888; Lena born in Ash, Sryabout 1890; Blanche born in Oxfordshire about 1892; Sonny (male) and Harriet born in Bicester, Oxf about 1894-7; Algernon christened in Bicester in 1901; William born in Stratford, Wks about 1901; Roland born in Chipping Norton, Oxf about 1904; and Ivy born in Buckingham about 1908 (Abram, Lena, Algernon and William married respectively Martha Smith, Nathan Bryant, Maud Stanley and Janey Fletcher, all in the Buckingham RD, whilst Leonard and Ivy are said to have married Dolly Bath and Bill Betts).

Copyright © 2015 Eric Trudgill