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Fifth Generation - Mary Petyt       

      Edward Harrison’s mother Mary Petyt had married his father Thomas Harrison, a widower, as his second wife on 18 May 1780 in Skipton [1] .

       Mary Petyt was the second daughter of Anthony Petyt and Mary Heelis and was christened on 7 May 1762 in Skipton [2] . She was the eldest surviving child of this couple as her older sister Margaret had died at the age of two months [3] . Her younger sister Anne arrived when Mary was three years old and survived to adulthood [4] . However, at five years of age Mary would have seen her little brother John die before he had reached his first birthday [5] . Her next brother Anthony also died before he reached his second birthday [6] .  In 1777 Mary’s last siblings arrived, twins John and Elizabeth [7] . However, little John did not survive a month and was buried on 29 September 1777 in Skipton parish church [8] . By the age of fifteen, Mary had seen three brothers die, and one sister had died before she was born. Only Mary and her two sisters survived out of a family of seven children.

       Mary’s father, Anthony Petyt, was a yeoman of Crookrise near Thorlby, and Deerstones near Bolton Abbey [9] . As there was, no son to inherit any lands that Anthony held it seems that the inheritance was divided equally amongst the three daughters. Mary’s sister Ann Petyt had married Michael Downs who is recorded as farming None-go-Bye Farm and Crookrise [10] . It is interesting to note that None-go-bye was probably the site of an Inn, although perhaps it was also a hunting lodge [11] .  Mary’s youngest sister Elizabeth married a Thomas Green who is described in Addingham Parish registers as a farmer of Deerstones [12] . Mary’s husband, Thomas Harrison, may also have farmed at Crookrise, and may have given the lands to his eldest son John Harrison by his first marriage [13] . It is, however, not certain how these lands were held [14] .

       As the daughter of a Yeoman farmer, Mary would have been used to the hard work required on a smallholding. This would have been necessary training for her married life with Thomas Harrison. Mary Petyt married Thomas Harrison at the age of eighteen and became a mother by her twentieth year. In addition to bearing Thomas Harrison eight children, she also cared for his four other children by his first marriage [15] . 

       Mary died on 27 July 1806 in Skipton, aged forty-four, and was buried on 29 July 1806 in Skipton Parish Church.



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[1] Skipton Parish Registers.

[2] Skipton Parish Registers.

[3] Margaret Pettyt was baptized in Skipton, on 6/02/1761. Margaret was buried on  30/04/1761 in Skipton.

[4] Ann Pettyt was baptized in Skipton, North Yorkshire, 14/04/1765. She later  married Michael Downs.

[5] John Pettyt was baptized in Skipton on 23/10/1768. John was buried on  25/06/1769 in Skipton.         

[6] Anthony Pettyt was baptized in Skipton on 26/12/1770. His body was interred on  7/09/1772.

[7] John and Elizabeth Pettyt were baptized on 22/06/1777, Skipton. Elizabeth later married Thomas Green.

[8] Skipton Parish Registers.

[9] Anthony Pettyt is described in the baptism details of his children and grandchildren as a Farmer and Yeoman of Crookrise and Deerstones. See Bolton Abbey, Addingham, and Skipton Parish registers.

[10] Michael Downs is described as a farmer of Crookrise in 1783, and of None-go-byes Farm in 185 in baptism records of his children Edward, christened 18 November 1783, and Mary, christened 15 April 1785, in Skipton Parish Registers.

[11] For the theory iot was once an Inn see Dawson, p. 355. For the theory that it ewas a hunting lodge see Speight, Upper Wharfedale.

[12] In baptism details of his son Anthony, christened 6 July 1800, Thomas Green is described as a farmer of Deerstones. Addingham Parish Registers. Anthony Green’s daughters Sarah Ann and Mary Ann were buried in the same burial plot as Anthony Petyt in 1830, and 1832. See Holy Trinity Church, Skipton,  Monumental Inscriptions.

[13] In the baptism record of his daughter Mary, christened 10 May 1809, John Harrison is recorded as a Farmer of Crookrise. Skipton Parish Registers.

[14] I intend to trawl the trade directories, poll books etc. to determine any further clues.

[15] Seebelow for further details


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