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Last Days at Home
Marriage to Thomas Horner
Edward Harrison
James Harrison
Death of Thomas Horner
Sick at Home
 Family Connections

Second Generation - Sarah Ann Harrison    

       Sarah Ann Harrison, mother of George Horner, was born in May 1838 at 97, Newmarket Street, Skipton and baptized on 3 June 1838 [1] . She was the eldest daughter of Thomas Harrison and Margaret Scott. Her father Thomas Harrison was a tailor and the family lived in a house that had probably been in the hands of Thomas’s ancestors for generations.

     In June 1841, Sarah Ann, aged three, lived in Newmarket Street with her parents and her younger sister Jane, aged one [2] . She was probably too young to remember her brother Joseph who had died in 1839 aged two [3] . Her father Thomas was a Tailor, but he did not have his own business and may have worked for a larger firm, probably near Newmarket Street [4] . Margaret did not work and cared for Sarah Ann and her sister at home. However, Sarah Ann’s maternal grandparents also lived in Newmarket Street, a few doors away from her family home and were on hand if needed [5] . Thomas Harrison may have earned enough as a Tailor to support his family.

Thomas Harrison married Margaret Scott
Sarah Ann
born 1838
born 1840
born 1842
born 1846

   In 1851 Sarah Ann’s cousin, John Bramley, had joined the Harrison family. John was only two years old in 1851 and was cared for by Sarah’s mother Margaret Harrison [7] . Margaret Harrison’s sister Mary Scott had married George Bramley in 1845 [8] . They had two children before Mary Bramley died in 1850 [9] .  In 1851, George Bramley lived at number 7 Back of the Becks, a widower and a twister-in in a Cotton factory. He lived near his father John Bramley, weaver, at the Back of the Becks, uncle to Elizabeth Horner nee Bramley, and great uncle to Thomas Horner [10] . It is possible that the Harrisons and Horners knew each other through the Bramley connection [11] .

 Sarah’s grandfather John Scott, and her Aunt Sarah Scott still lived close by in Newmarket Street. John Scott worked as a Labourer, and his daughter Sarah as a weaver [12] . Sarah Scott probably worked in Isaac Dewhurst’s Cotton Mill on Newmarket Street.

Last days at Home

In April 1861, Sarah Ann was preparing for her marriage to Thomas Harrison in May and was still living at home with her parents on Newmarket Street [13] . Sarah Ann, aged twenty-two, and her sister Jane, aged twenty-one, both worked as a Cotton Power Loom Weavers in Dewhurst’s Cotton Mill. Their Aunt Sarah Scott, who still lived in Newmarket Street, was also a Cotton Power Loom Weaver. Sarah Ann and Jane may have followed Sarah Scott into the factory. Dewhurst’s was the first Mill to introduce Power Looms into Skipton in 1829. Initially a Worsted factory, Dewhursts started to produce Cotton when the mills were rebuilt after being burnt in 1831.

Sarah Ann’s brothers Edward, aged nineteen and James aged fifteen, were Whitesmiths and ‘Bele hangers’ and did not work in the Cotton Factory [14] . Sarah’s cousin James Bramley had moved out of the Harrison household and was living with his grandfather John and his aunt Sarah Scott who still lived in Newmarket Street. In 1861 Sarah Scott, aged thirty-three, continued to work as a cotton power Loom worker in Dewhurst’s Mill, but John Scott, aged sixty-seven, had changed his occupation and now worked as a servant, a groom [15] .

Life cannot have been easy for Sarah Ann, as in addition to working in Dewhurst’s Mill she also had a two year old daughter Elizabeth Ann to care for [16] . This may have been the reason why James Bramley had moved to live with his grandfather, to make room for the baby. Sarah Ann’s mother Margaret Harrison probably stayed at home and looked after Elizabeth Ann when Sarah was in the cotton Mill, as she had no occupation in 1861. It is doubtful whether Sarah’s future husband Thomas Horner was the father of Elizabeth Ann. Elizabeth Ann spent her childhood in the care of her grandparents at Newmarket Street and did not join Sarah Ann’s married households.

Marriage to Thomas Horner

  Sarah Ann married Thomas Horner in Skipton Parish Church on 28 May 1861. Sarah Ann’s brother Edward Harrison was one of the witnesses to the marriage [26] . Sarah Ann and Thomas soon started to build a home together at 89 Millfields, Skipton, and their first son James Horner was born about a year later in 1862. Five years later Harrison Horner was born in 1867, and their youngest son George was born on 3 August 1869 [27] .  Sarah Ann probably remained at home to take care of the children, although the gaps between their ages may mean that she worked in the factory when her children were weaned [28] .

Brother Edward Harrison

          Sarah’s brother Edward married Jane Henry in October 1862 [29] . Edward and Jane soon started a family, the first son James Henry Harrison being born in 1863, followed by Mary Ann Harrison in 1868 [30] . Edward did not live in Skipton in 1871, but his son James Henry was living with Edward’s mother Margaret Harrison [18] .

          By 1881, Edward had set up his own household at 14, Westmoreland Street, Skipton, and worked as a Whitesmith [19] . His wife Jane continued to work as a Woollen weaver, probably in the nearest factory. His son James Henry aged eighteen was a Blacksmith Striker. Mary Ann aged thirteen was still at School. 

          Ten years later in 1891, Edward and his wife Jane were still living at 14, Westmoreland Street, but Edward, aged 49, was a Blacksmith [20] ..  Their married daughter, Mary Ann Clarkson, and three grandchildren joined Edward and Jane in their household. Mary Ann was a cotton weaver and she probably left the care of her two children Edith J. Clarkson, aged two, and Fred Clarkson, aged 1, to her mother during the day.  Jane Harrison probably also cared for her other grandchild Jane L. Harrison, probably the daughter of Jane’s son James Henry Harrison.

       Not far away, Edward’s son James Henry Harrison had set up his own household in 1891 at 20, Crossley Place. James, aged 29 was a general labourer. His wife Amanda, aged 28, was born in Gargrave [31] . James and Amanda had three children, Edward, aged 5, Catherine, aged 2, and Harold 8 months old [32] .

       Sarah’s sister Jane married William Smith, dyer, in 1872 and at 35 years of age became the mother of Thomas Smith in 1875 [33] .

Brother James Harrison

       In 1868 James married Martha Hannah Smith, a dressmaker, and they set up home together in Sun Yard, Skipton by 1871 [34] . Their eldest son Thomas Henry Harrison was only two years old, and Martha probably balanced her dressmaking with care for her son. James continued to work as a Whitesmith.

       Between 1871 and 1881 the family grew, Willie Harrison joining the family in 1872, Annie Harrison in 1875, and Edward Harrison 1878.  By 1881, the family had moved to 11, Coach Street, Skipton, and James Harrison was working as a Mechanic on S-Mach machines [35] . Most of the children attended school, except three-year-old Edward.  Annie Smith, aged 19, probably Martha’s sister also lived with the family.

Death of Thomas Horner

       In 1873, Thomas Horner died and left Sarah Ann with the care of three young boys [36] . Her youngest son George Horner was only four years old. Only two years later in December 1876, Sarah Ann, aged thirty-nine, married a boatman named George Bright, aged twenty-five [37] . Her brother Edward and her sister in law Mary Hannah were Sarah’s witnesses.

      Sarah was a full fifteen years older than George Bright, and it is difficult to understand how her Horner in-laws would have responded to this arrangement. Sarah Ann may have needed a male provider for her young family, as it is difficult to see how her family would have survived on one wage. Her eldest son James Horner was a cotton worker and had probably been forced into working in the cotton factories when he left school in 1874, to support his widowed mother and his two younger brothers. He may have cared little for her new husband who would only have been eleven years older than him.

However, the marriage may have been a happy one. In 1881, Sarah and her three sons were living in the household of George Bright, at 2 Commercial Street [38] . Her middle son Harrison Horner became a boatman and seems to have followed George Bright into the canal business. This shows that at least Harrison was on good terms with George Bright.

Sick at Home

      Ten years later, when living in her son’s household, Sarah Ann has the surname Horner, not Bright, which was probably an enumerator’s error [39] . By1891, Sarah was ‘kept by her son’ James Horner in his household at 18, Westgate [40] . It is uncertain what had happened to George Bright, but he had probably passed away. 

      Sarah Ann was fifty-three years old, and described as a widow. Sarah Ann had no occupation, and although she had worked in a cotton factory when she was younger, it is possible that she was no longer able to earn a living for herself. She was also possibly infirm and had to be cared for by her son and his wife Annie.

      James and his wife Annie also had a lodger Elizabeth Thompson, a ‘sick nurse’. Elizabeth may have helped to care for Sarah Ann. Sarah Ann’s father Thomas had died before he was fifty-four and her grandfather Edward Harrison had died aged 48 [41] . At fifty-three years of age, Sarah Ann may have been suffering from some sort of inherited condition. In the 1891 census, we have the last written record of Sarah Ann’s life before her death in September of that year [42] .         

Family Connections

Sarah Ann Harrison and Thomas Horner probably met through family connections. Sarah Ann’s aunt Mary Scott had married George Bramley, a cousin to Elizabeth Horner (nee Bramley) Thomas Horner’s mother. George Bramley’s father John Bramley was a weaver and in 1841 lived at Back of the Becks in Skipton with his wife Margaret and his children [17] .

Thomas Harrison married Mary Petyt
Edward Harrison
born 1788
married Elizabeth Barker
William Harrison
born 1794
married Sarah Myers
Thomas Harrison
born 1817
married Margaret Scott
Isabella Myers
William Watson
Mary Harrison
born 1827
Sarah Ann Harrison
born 1838
Isaac Watson
born 1840

 There may be another connection through Thomas Horner’s uncle Mark, and Sarah Ann’s great-uncle William Harrison.

Thomas Horner and most of his aunts and uncles lived in Commercial Street in 1841. There was a close family tie between Thomas and his uncle, Mark Horner, who lived eight doors away from his parent’s house. For a time Mark’s son Robert had lived in the same house as Thomas. In 1841, Mark Horner and his family lived in Commercial Street next door to a certain William Watson who also worked in the factory as a cotton weaver.

This William Watson lived with his second wife, Elizabeth (nee Haworth), and two sons Isaac, aged three and William who was only a year old [23] . A Sarah Harrison, aged 50, and her daughter Mary, aged 10, also lived in the Watson household. These were William Watson’s relations by his first marriage. Isaac Watson was the son of William Watson’s first marriage to Isabella Myers, the natural daughter of Sarah Myers [24] . This Sarah Myers had later married William Harrison, Sarah Ann’s uncle [25] .

The Mary Harrison, aged ten, living in the household of William Watson in Commercial Street in 1841, was therefore Sarah Ann Harrison’s cousin. Doubtless Sarah Ann’s family in Newmarket Street would have maintained contact with the Harrison’s in Commercial Street, and Sarah Ann would have had occasion to visit there.



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[1] Sarah Ann Harrison was born on 7 May 1838. Holy Trinity Skipton parish registers. 1841 Skipton census and IGI. The number of the house does not appear until 1881.

[2] Jane Harrison was christened on 6 October 1839 in Skipton. IGI.

[3] Joseph Harrison was born on 12 March 1837 and christened on 14 May 1837. He was buried on 6 April 1839. Skipton Holy Trinity Parish records.

[4] Thomas Harrison is not listed in Skipton Directories. I have yet to identify the firm where Thomas worked.In White’s directory for 1837 John and William Birbeck & Co. Worsted Spinners & Manufacturers, are based at Devonshire Place Skipton.  A John Harrison, manager.

[5] In 1841 Census John and Mary Scott live on Newmarket Street. 1841 Census.

[6] Skipton Census 1851. Edward Harrison was born on and christened on 25 July 1841, Skipton. James Scott Harrison was born on 16 September 18445 and christened on 9 November 1845 in Skipton. Holy Trinity Skipton Parish Registers. 

[7] John Bramley was born on the 25 December 1848 and christened on 4 March 1849. He was the son of George and Mary Bramley. Holy Trinity parish registers Skipton.

[8] George Bramley son of John Bramley weaver and Mary Scott had married on 19 August 1845 Skipton. Holy Trinity Parish registers.

[9] Margaret Bramley was born on 11 November 1845 and christened on 14 December 1845 back of Becks Skipton. Her mother Mary Bramley nee Scott was buried on 20 July 1850 aged 37. Holy Trinity Parish Registers.

[10] George Bramley is described as 34 years old in 1851 Skipton Census.

[11] At George Bramley and Mary Scott’s wedding John Ingham and Elizabeth Bramley were witnesses. John Ingham later married Margaret Scott’s sister Elizabeth Scott on 27 February 1848. Holy Trinity Skipton parish Registers. This Elizabeth Bramley was probably George’s sister Elizabeth, daughter of John bramley who later became Mrs. Banister.

[12] In 1861 John Scott is an ostler!

[13] Skipton Census 1861.

[14] There are Harrisons in the 1803 Muster Roll of Skipton working as Whitesmiths. There may be a connection. The grandfather Edward Harrison had married Elizabeth Barker whose family had traded as Blacksmiths for generation in Skipton. Their grandfather Edward Harrison had married Elizabeth Barker. Her cousin Thomas Barker was a whitesmith in 1837. There are also Harrisons in 1803 Muster Roll of Skipton who are whitesmiths and bell hangers and there may be a connection. Blacksmiths were needed to build machinery used in the early factories. Millhome Mill in Embsay was built by William Baynes of Embsay Kirk and Allan edmundson in 1792/3. They traded as Baynes, Barker, Spencer and Co. and manufactured cotton cloth using handloom weavers. In 1813 the concern was sold to the Dewhursts. Ingle. It is probable that these barkers were involved in emsay mill.

[15] John Scott may be connected with the beer House run by John Scott on Newmarket Street in 1837.

[16] Elizabeth Ann Harrison was born 15 July 1858 and christened on 22 August 1858. Holy Trinity parish registers Skipton. She was probably named after her Harrison aunts Elizabeth and Anne, thus showing a close connection.

[17] John Bramley married Margaret Birtwhistle, widow on 20 June 1814 Skipton. They had the following children. Martha Bramley christened on 14 July 1815. James born 6 December 1815 and christened 14 may 1815. James was buried 16 February 1817 aged 2. George Bramley was born 29 January 1817 and christened 16 February 1817. Elizabeth was born 20 August 1821 and christened 25 December 1821. Sarah was born 31 January 1819 and christened 20 June 1819. Sarah was buried 21 November 1823. John was born 17 December 1828 and christened 17 February 1828. He was buried 23 February 1828 aged one week. Holy trinity Skipton Parish registers. For details of the connection see James Bramley

[18] 1871 Census Skipton.

[19] 1881 Census Skipton.

[20] 1891 Census Skipton.

[23] 1841 Census Skipton.

[24] Isabella was christened 3 December 1815, Skipton, the daughter of Sarah Myers. IGI.

[25] William Harrison, Hawker, and Sarah Myers were married in Skipton on 26 October 1826 Holy trinity parish registers.

[26] Marriage Certificate

[27] 1871 Skipton Census.

[28] See George Horner’s details for assumptions on relations with the in-law Horners.

[29] They married on 6 October 1862. Skipton parish registers.

[30] James Henry Harrison was born on 17 October 1862, and christened on 16 November 1862 Mary Agnes Harrison was born on 17 September 1867 and christened on 20October 18667. Skipton parish registers.

[31] James Henry Harrison married Amanda Edmundson aged 29, on 12 April 1883. Amanda was the daughter of Norman Edmundson, carter. Skipton Parish registers.

[32] Their daughter Jane Lucas was born 15 May 1883 and christened 2 September 1883. Skipton parish registers.

[33] Jane Harrison married William Smith on 24 December 1872 aged 34. Skipton parish registers.

[34] They married on 30 July 1868. Their daughter Annie Jane was christened on 19 July and born on 1 may 1874. Edward was born on 14 January and christened on 18 June 1878. Thomas Henry was born on 23 December 1868 and christened on 14 Feb 1869; William was born on 22 April 1871 and christened on 10 September 1871. Skipton parish registers.

[35] I have yet to find out what S-Mach’s were.

[36] Thomas Horner died in June 1873, in Skipton, aged thirty-three. See vol. 9a, p. 37, Free BMD.

[37] George Bright, 25, waterman, and Sarah Ann Horner, 43, were married 23 December 1876 in Skipton. Holy Trinity Parish Registers. .

[38] 1881 Skipton Census. George was born in Luddington, NorthHampshire in 1852.

[39] I have yet to find a marriage certificate for George Bright and Sarah Ann Horner.

[40] 1891 Census Skipton.

[41] A Thomas Harrison died in March 1873 aged 66 in Skipton. See Free BMD.

[42] Sarah Ann Bright died in September 1891 in Skipton. See Free BMD,.


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