Search billions of records on




  Bradley      Figgis     Tredwell     Pigg    Tudor    Young    Jones 


Bradley Outline Descendant Tree

The American Connection

Percy    FREDERIC    John Henry    Benjamin    Thomas    Anthony    HENRY

This is the story of my Bradley family starting with my own branch and my father, John Howard`s family.  His father was -

PERCY BRADLEY (1870-1946)

John Howard (Howard) (my father) born 5th May 1910 was the fourth child of eight born to Percy and (1) Dorothea Emilie Constance Young, and (2) Eleanor Hart. His siblings are (1)Percy Frederick George (George), William Albert Raymond (Ray), Connla John Osman (Osman), Dorothea Eleanor Constance (Nora), Arthur Sidney Nicholas (Dick), (2) Percy James (Jim) and John Christopher.

George (1905-1946) married Renee Shockley and had three sons. George went to Ruthin School and St Lawrence College, Ramsgate (the latter proving to be connected with the Bradley family more than was previously thought - see notes on Dr Samuel Messenger Bradley). George attended Liverpool University and obtained an Engineering Degree. Unfortunately he was not allowed to be awarded with the Degree as it was discovered he had never matriculated! He was in the RAF as a pilot and was killed in an aircraft accident while testing a new jet engine in 1946. He had just been promulgated Air Commodore, sadly with effect from a few days after his death.

Ray (1906-1933) also went to St Lawrence College and then into the Cotton trade with his father. He spent some time in Hamburg, Germany and has left some lovely photos of life in the late 1920s/early 1930s. He sadly died of cancer in 1933.

Osman (1908-2007), another pupil at St Lawrence. After work with cotton merchants in India, he later became a lay missionary with BCMS. At the outbreak of war he joined the Ghurka Rifles and became a Major. After the war he returned to England and attended Theological College and was ordained as a Church of England minister. He was vicar at Peckham, Frogmore, St Albans (1955-68) and Havering-Atte-Bower, Chelmsford (1968-76). Osman married and had 2 step-children and one child.

Howard, (1910-2004) the last sibling to attend St Lawrence had to leave aged 15 (family financial problems). He started out in the Cotton industry but during the war he served in the RAF. On his return his job was no longer available so he took up accountancy and joined the Liverpool firm of Glass and Edwards in 1946 (age 36) as an articled clerk. He eventually became senior partner in the firm Duncan Glass. He had the honour of being President of the Liverpool Society of Chartered Accountants in 1963.  He married Laura Dilys Jones.

Nora (1912-1998), the only daughter, attended Belvedere School in Liverpool and after running a small school in Brombrough,Wirral, trained as a nurse, specialising in midwifery and then became more involved in the administrative side, eventually holding a senior position in the NHS in South East England.

Dick (1916-) was a pupil at Ruthin School, N Wales. Following service in India in the RAF, he remained there for a few years teaching, specialising in woodwork and metalwork. On returning to England he taught at Monkton Combe School near Bath, Bruton Junior School, and St Probus in Salisbury. This he did for many years until, never having had official training, he went to Teacher`s Training College and qualified. He then taught at Spendlove School, Charlbury in the Cotswolds. He has been very involved in the Scouting Movement, becoming a District Commissioner. He has also been a Lay Reader at his church in Sway in the New Forest. Dick married later in life than most - age 84.

Jim (1923-2012) made his career in the RAF, joining virtually straight from school in 1943. He served in the bomber command during the war. After the war he moved to the secretarial/accounts branch. He obtained the rank of Squadron Leader, serving twice in Singapore and once in Cyprus. He married Norah Bowler.

John (1928-) also spent time in the RAF and then taught for a number of years at King James Grammar School on the Isle of Wight where he ran the CCF. He married Tina Wilson. For over 20 years John was sales director of a branch of Henley`s motors. He and Tina ran their own successful company J & T Bradley, in the New Forest restoring Cheltenham caravans. John was a pupil at Birkenhead Boys School.

Their father Percy married Dorothea Emilie Constance Young, (Percy`s descendants see separate Young chapter) daughter of Col. (Dr) Thomas Frederic Young, in 1904 at St Paul`s Church, Hooton on the Wirral. They were married by the Rev`d Ernest Cullwick (Percy`s brother-in-law) and Arthur and Bobbie (two of his brothers) were witnesses. Apparently Percy was a fluent linguist and spent some time in Germany. He worked for the German company Reiss Bros. (Cotton merchants) in Liverpool as a manager and then partner. They lived in Southport for a few years around 1910 and then to Somenos, Birkenhead Rd. Meols, Wirral until about 1916. The name 'Somenos' we have recently discovered originates from Vancouver Island, BC where Dorothea`s brother and parents lived in the early 1900s. Percy then moved to Liverpool to 22 Grove Park (picture dated 1923). Dorothea died in the Spanish flu outbreak in 1918 leaving Percy with the six children. Dorothea was pregnant again when she died. Percy then married Eleanor Hart. Reiss Bros. were obviously having a difficult time in the UK with WW2 and Percy did not have any more money to put into the business. Percy had been a fairly wealthy gentleman with a good lifestyle. Financial difficulties arose and eventually this lifestyle changed for the whole family. They lived from 1923 to 1930 at Chorlton Hall, nr Chester (modern photo below by kind permission of the present owners Mr and Mrs Hess), along with Eleanor`s 3 sisters and a brother, and then a few years at The Firs, Upton-by-Chester. Their next home was Wentworth on Meols Drive, Hoylake (picture dated 1932) and then Glenetive, Smiths Hill, West Kirby. At this stage George, Ray, Osman and Howard had moved out of the family home. Percy died 25th December 1946 whilst temporarily living in a caravan in the garden of a house in Oxton, Birkenhead, the house being converted into flats.

Please click on the thumbnails for larger pictures.

Percy and Dora Wedding Day 1904.           Grove Park                               Chorlton Hall -             The Firs                 Wentworth   




Percy was one of sixteen children born to Frederic and Eliza (Piggott).                          

Back to Top


His other siblings were:

The eldest Frederic Charles (Charlie) (born Wolverley 1869-1939) married Mary Page (Sissy) 1897. He was a Mechanical Draughtsman. Not much is known about his business career but he ran Eagle Engineering, Warwick. It is believed he and his younger brother Neville bought all the shares and the company prospered. Amongst other things, they developed and patented the refuse vehicles which still collect household rubbish which is crushed as it is collected. Sissy had a very large income from her family trusts. When she died the capital reverted to her family. I have just discovered that extensive records of this company are held at Warwick Records Office, and that the company was incorporated in 1911. In the Kelly`s Directories for this area for 1912 and 1916 he is listed as living in Packwood, Warwick.  He died 20th March 1939 at Kingswood, Uplyme Lyme Regis, Dorset. Probate to his widow Mary Page Bradley and effects £3322 1s 9d. She died 30th November 1961 at the same address. Probate to Midland Bank Executor and Trustee Co. Ltd. Effects £26,977 18s 3d.

Mary Ellen (Nell) (born Wolverley 1870-1959) was a boarder at a school in Hastings in 1881 aged 11. She married the Rev`d Ernest J Cullwick. He was vicar at Smethwick, Birmingham, Lyonshall, Kington and Westbury Salop. They had one daughter Grace (b.4 June 1894), who remained unmarried and died 25 October 1952.  Mary Ellen died 5 February 1959, her address at the time was White Cottage, Hockering  Gardens, Woking, Surrey.  Probate Liverpool to John Howard Bradley.  Effects £2898 19s 8d.

Francis John (Frank) (born Wolverley 1871-1925) was the naughty boy - (imprisoned for theft)! He was at school in Wolverley as a boarder when he was 9. From 24 April 1901 to 15 March 1902 he was a Lieutenant with the Cape Colony Cycle Corps, a colonial unit of the Boer War 1899-1902.  The following are copies of newspaper cuttings relating to his escapades:



A well dressed gentlemanly looking man 32 named Francis Bradley described as of no occupation but who was engaged as Lieutenant in the Cape Colony Cyclists Corps attached to the General French in the South African War, was charged at Liverpool Assizes today with having stolen a parcel of 18 articles of diamond jewellery from Messrs. Oldfields Ltd., Liverpool Jewellers. Bradley, through his counsel, Mr Rigby Smith, pleaded guilty and thereupon a second charge of forgery was withdrawn.

Mr Maxwell, who prosecuted, said the theft was one showing considerable ingenuity, and had been carried out with great skill. The prisoner became acquainted some time last year with a well known South African merchant, Mr Laing Miller, who he met in Cape Town. Mr Laing Miller told prisoner he was acquainted with Mrs. Brocklebank, of Gateacre, Liverpool, and on returning to England prisoner entered on this fraud. It was assumed that he came to Liverpool to find out particulars in regard to the Brocklebanks, and he sent a telegram from Hotel Cecil, London to their house saying he would call on Saturday or the Monday following. This was early in December, and on the 8th he sent a telegram to Messrs. Oldfield asking them to send Mrs Brocklebank, of The Hollies, Gateacre, diamond ornaments worth £50 to £100 each on approval. Easy victims, the Firm sent the orders the same evening and the prisoner followed up his telegram by coming up to Liverpool and taking rooms at an hotel. From the hotel he telephoned to Brocklebanks knowing the family were away, and asked, ‘Is Mrs Brocklebank at home?’ and received a negative reply. Then he said , ‘I am Mr Laing Miller; I have sent up a parcel to Mrs Brocklebank and I will call tomorrow morning and take it up to London to Mrs Brocklebank’. Next morning, shortly after a parcel of jewellery had been delivered by registered post, the prisoner called at the house and said ‘I am Mr Laing Miller and I would be glad if you would give me the parcel to take to Mrs Brocklebank’. The parcel, which contained jewellery worth £1000 was handed over to him and he proceeded to London, where he immediately raised sums of £20, £15 and £10.


The prisoner afterwards went to Southampton, and under the assumed name of Elliott he got rid of further goods, receiving £50 for them. He also entered into negotiation with large firms of jewellers in London and elsewhere, from one of which he received £70 in one instance. Suspicion was aroused over a diamond pendant, but prisoner declared it was the property of his intended wife. However, in April this year prisoner, who was living at Gladstone House, Winchester, was noticed by the Head Constable in the Royal Hotel and an officer having gone home in the meantime to look up his records challenged Bradley as to his identity. Bradley then confessed, and it must be said in his favour that he had given every assistance he could to recover the stolen property. The prosecution had recovered about £500 worth of the property, though the settings of some of the most valuable ornaments had been destroyed in order that loose stones could be sold at various places by the prisoner, who had been for about 4 or 5 months eluding the police.


Mr Rigby Swift, appealing for a light sentence in order that the prisoner might have a chance to redeem his past life, said he had a letter from General French`s Chief of Staff, expressing the hope that the good work done by the prisoner in the late war might be considered. There were also letters from other officers showing that the prisoner had distinguished himself in Cape Colony. Mr Swift explained that on returning from Southampton Bradley was taken ill, and had to be removed from his home to the Royal Hotel, Winchester. There he lay in a dangerous condition for some time. On recovering he found his hotel bill and run up tremendously, and in a moment of desperation he conceived the plan of raising money in the way indicated. Prisoner at first hoped to make restitution, but he was again taken ill and had to part with more jewellery as his difficulties increased. He now stated that during the time he was eluding the police, life was a perfect burden to him. The horror of what he had done was always with him.

Mr Justice Bingham, addressing the prisoner, said Bradley had admitted offences against honesty on more than one occasion. He had had light sentences, and in that sense had been given the chance to reform. Light sentences having proved no good, he must now go to penal servitude for five years.


Bradley, who stood erect, with tears in his eyes, hurried out of the dock to hide his emotions, and an argument was opened as to the disposal of the stolen property which had been recovered. His Lordship said he was not disposed to do much for Messrs Oldfield, who ought to be more careful in parting with jewellery on the strength of telegrams. It was mentioned, however, to his Lordship that the Pawnbrokers had been 3 times warned about the property which was privately marked, and eventually the judge ordered that the jewellery which had been pledged should be returned on payment of two thirds of the amount advanced.

Prisoner was sent to penal servitude for five years.

       *******************************************************                                                       **************************************************





Information has reached the Liverpool Police that Francis John Bradley, long and very much wanted in connection with a highly ingenious jewel theft from Oldfields, Ltd., of date December 8th, has at length been arrested and 2 Liverpool Detectives were this morning to be dispatched for Winchester to bring the accused back to this City to undergo his trial.

The robbery, it will be remembered, was kept so quiet that upwards of a week elapsed before it became known to the public. Great excitement, however, was caused by the information that Messrs Oldfields, Ltd., had been victimized of jewellery to the value of nearly £1000 by a daring scheme, at first ascribed to a gang of predators, though later information led the police to suspect that it was carried through by the plans, still more difficult of detection, of a one man operator.


according to the account made known to the public through these columns dated December 17th, was that, on the 8th of the same month, while Mr and Mrs Brocklebank, of The Hollies, Gateacre, were on a visit to London and staying in the Inns of Court Hotel, Holborn, a telegram in their name was received by Oldfields, Ltd., at their business address in Old Post Place, asking for certain jewellery to be forwarded to The Hollies on approval. The station from which the message was sent was Euston Post Office, London, and Messrs Oldfield, believing it to be genuine, at once dispatched, according to the request, brooches, pendants, and c. to the value of £910, by registered letter, to The Hollies, Gateacre. Meantime the servants at The Hollies had from London a telephonic message, purporting to be from Mr Laing Miller, a South African shipowner, well known to the family, asking if

The Parcel of Jewellery

had arrived for Mr and Mrs Brocklebank. The answer was in the negative and the housemaid who took the message was further told, ‘I am coming down for it, and will take it to London and will give it to Mr and Mrs Brocklebank’.

On the following morning, about half past 8, a well dressed man of gentlemanly appearance presented himself at The Hollies, asking for the parcel. Mr Laing Miller, who, it afterwards turned out, was not in this country at the time, was known to most of the servants, but not to the housemaid who saw the applicant. Presuming that he was the right man, she asked him to come in, and await the postman`s arrival. Ten minutes later the parcel was delivered at the house, and was handed to the man, who said he was Mr Laing Miller, and would deliver it to Mr and Mrs Brocklebank.

Accompanying the parcel was a letter from Oldfields, which was forwarded to London along with other correspondence, and it then turned out that a daring fraud had been perpetrated.

Diligent enquiry on the part of the Liverpool and Scotland Yard Police as to the appearance of the gentleman to whom the parcel of jewellery was handed seem to identify him with Francis John Bradley whose South African career seemed to give confirmation of the suspicion. On February 2 there was issued from the Liverpool Detective Office with a promise of a £50 reward a printed bill inviting the arrest of Bradley, charged with stealing Diamond Jewellery to the Value of £900.

It seemed to him as a native of Liverpool, fashionably dressed, and staying in good class hotels; 35 years of age, and 6 feet one and a half inches high. The bill also stated that he had been convicted of forgery in South Africa, where he had been for several years prior to the Boer War, and that he was said to have held lieutenant`s commission in the South African Irregular Corps.

Thou Messrs Oldfields had taken the precaution to insure the jewellery as regarded its safe transit to its full value, and were therefore, not at any pecuniary loss by the nefarious transaction, it was they who are understood to have offered the £50 reward.



He married Kathleen Jones (Kate), a publican`s daughter 1909. She stood by him through all his troubles. She was licensee of a pub somewhere in Wiltshire and had very little money, but when Raymond (Percy`s son) was terminally ill, she sent Ray`s brother Howard an occasional £5 to help out. No children.  Frank died 17 May 1925.  He and Kathleen lived at The Old Thatch Cottage Japton Arundel, Sussex.  He died at West Park Mental Hospital, Epsom, Surrey.  Effects £232 1s 8d - to Kathleen.

Henry Howard (Harry) (born Wolverley 1872) was a boarder at Needwood House School, Kidderminster aged 9 in 1881. He went to Australia and married Marjorie Phillips. They had one daughter Eliza Maud. Harry returned to England with Eliza after Marjorie died. Eliza was brought up at Thornton Hall and Northwick, and eventually lived at Oakfield House, Ombersley with her Uncle Bobby and Aunt Maud. Eliza remained unmarried. Harry took various jobs of a semi-labouring nature. He stayed with Percy at Chorlton for some time, working at Liverpool Warehousing Co.

Maud (born Wolverley 1873-1954) never married and lived with her brother Raymond (Bobbie) in the family homes, and eventually at Oakfield House, Ombersley, with Eliza.

Ernest (born Wolverley 1874-1932). He was apprenticed at Wilson`s, Birkenhead as an engineer. He spent some time in India helping build a bridge over the Ganges. After three years he caught malaria very badly, but recovered, returned home and was put in charge of the Caldwell Foundry (later Bradley & Turton), where at various times he was helped out by brothers Bobbie and Arthur. He married Maud Owen (Maudo) in 1902 and they had 3 children, Peter, Evelyn and James. Their homes included a house in Franche Road, nearly opposite the old rectory (one year), then to Goldness until 1911 and then to Ashfield, Torton, a house which had been built in 1895. Peter was a famous motor-cyclist and captained the English 7 day international trials team for a number of years, and Ernest travelled in the sidecar as navigator. Peter married Rita Gibson. Daughter Evelyn ran a school at their family home in Kidderminster. She was unmarried. She was very involved with the Girl Guides and received an OBE for her services. She was also a JP. The youngest son James (Jim) died about 17 years of age. He had frequent operations with a tubercular bowel and was always an invalid. Ernest died in 1932. He was found dead from gunshot wounds, the verdict being accidental death. His son Peter took over the business.

Jane (born Wolverley 1875) married the Rev`d James (Jim) Kempson who was vicar at Penkridge and later a Prebendary at Lichfield Cathedral. No children.

Lewis (born Wolverley 1877-1889) died aged 12.

Neville (born Wolverley 1878) was a pupil at Repton School and qualified as a doctor from Liverpool. He married Margaret (Daisy) Cadbury (a quaker and part of the Cadbury family) and spent most of his life as a medical missionary in China. They had 6 children (5 boys and 1 girl). Marguerite the eldest married James Gibbons and had one daughter. Fred, the eldest boy was a finalist in the Diamond Sculls at Henley. He married Barbara Moon and had two children. James married Yvonne and had one daughter. Neville John (Jack) married Patricia Ann Deal, and they had an adopted son. The second to youngest, is living (2007). The youngest Patrick married Erica Appleton and had two sons. The two boys Jack and Malcolm were both Cambridge rowing blues. Neville died 7 August 1956  at Nether Wallop, Hampshire.  Effects £4777 3s 2d to his widow Margaret.

Percy (born Wolverley 1879-1946). See above.

Arthur Frederic (born Wolverley 1880-1971) married Vivian Middleton, who came from a wealthy Yorkshire stockbroking family. For some time Arthur helped out his brother Ernest. He eventually went into the Church and he and Vivian spent about a year in China with Neville and Daisy, and Hubert and Amy. Unfortunately through ill-health they had to return to England. They had four children Ronald, John (married with 2 children and 6 grandchildren), Ilma who remained unmarried, and youngest son still living. He was vicar of a number of parishes and finally Braunton, Devon.

Alfred (born Southport 1882) survived only 2 weeks after birth.

Amy Constance (born Southport 1884) felt the call to become a missionary herself but the only way her parents would allow her to do so, was if she joined her brother Neville in China. There she met and married Hubert Gordon Thompson a medical missionary. They spent most of their lives in China. They had 4 children, John, Arthur, Greta and Peter. John, a doctor, married Margaret Earle and had 4 children and 7 grandchildren. Arthur died quite young while a pupil at St Lawrence College. A daughter (still living) now widowed - 3 sons and 6 grandchildren. Peter`s first wife was Bridget Winsor and they had 2 children and 4 grandchildren, and with his second wife Ilsa, had Daniel.

Raymond Lindsay (Bobbie) (born Southport 1885-1953) was a bachelor. He always remained in the family homes with his widowed Mother together with Maud and young Eliza and from time to time other unmarried members of the family. After his Mother died, he moved with Maud and Eliza to Ombersley.  He died 9 October 1953.  Probate to Eliza.  Effects £18,008 3s 3d.

Ethel May (May) (born Cannock 1887) remained unmarried and was a nursing sister in Liverpool. She appears to have become a little eccentric. There is a story of suitcases lining the walls from floor to ceiling in her home, all carefully labelled or numbered containing her worldly goods. Some are of the opinion she starved herself to death.

The youngest of the 16 Marjorie (born Southport 1889) also remained unmarried. She was a teacher of the blind and learnt braille. Tragically she herself became blind.

It is interesting that the first 9 children were all born at the same house, Rock Mount, Wolverley (now Rock Hill). The house is still occupied, and I did visit with my father and my uncle, where the present owners were pleased to show us round, and even found documents mentioning Frederic Bradley. The house in Southport is no longer there, having made way for more modern architecture. Thornton Hall is now a motel/pub/restaurant. Northwick House, Worcester, is flourishing and I have also visited here with my father where the present owners were interested to see family photos of how the house used to look in the early 1900s.

It is perhaps a point of interest that Cannock, where May was born, was where their Grandfather (Eliza`s father, Francis Piggott) was living.

The couple who produced this large family were Frederic Bradley, and as mentioned above, his wife Eliza Piggott. (See separate chapter on the Piggotts and Tredwells). Frederic and Eliza were married on August 29th, 1867 at St Lukes Church, Cannock. The witnesses on this occasion were Eliza`s father Francis, and her sister Mary Sophia. The family rumour that the surname 'Piggott' had been changed at some stage is verified on Eliza`s birth certificate as her surname was 'Pigg'.

Eliza Bradley (nee Piggott)

Frederic was an Iron Founder and an Engineer. In 1860 his father John Henry acquired Clensmore Foundry, Kidderminster for him and it became part of John Bradley & Co., later F. Bradley & Co. For a while, the axle boxes used to mount Springbrook axles (see information on Frederic`s brother Samuel) were cast there. Around 1865 Frederic appears to have broken the business connections with his father and brother (Samuel) and to have formed his own company. In about 1910 he merged his business with that of George Turton, to form Bradley & Turton Limited  situated by the canal on Stourport Road and now the site of the Watermill pub. 2 foundries were worked - Clensmore and Caldwell both in Kidderminster. Later this firm became well known for its hydraulic presses and injection-moulding equipment, until it closed in the 1970`s with heavy losses. (This information obtained from Mr Peter Legat and also copies of Churchill & Blakedown Historical Notes.) Bradley & Turton was eventually taken over by Frederic`s sons Ernest and Bobbie and then to Ernest`s son Peter. The firm`s big contracts included work on the Severn Tunnel lining, London Underground, Birkenhead and Portsmouth Docks, Ryde and Margate Piers. A former employee has furnished me with some information and commented that it was always a pleasant place to work with a good spirit amongst the work force.

Frederic and his family lived at 'Rockmount', (now Rock Hill) Wolverley, Worcs. He was Chairman of the Governors of Sebright School, an old foundation from 1620 on Blakeshall Lane. Apparently three sons were pupils here. In the 1871 census Frederic, wife Eliza and children Charles (2), Nell (1) and Frank (2mths) were in residence along with 2 servants, a nurse and Eliza`s younger sister Mary Piggott who was probably helping with the baby. Victorian women were expected to rest after childbirth.  In 1881 6 sons were at home and one daughter, Maud was staying at Cannock with her maternal uncle John Piggott. 3 children were at boarding school: Nell (11) in Hastings; Harry (9) at Eastwood House, Kidderminster; Frank (10) at Bury Hall boarding house of Wolverley Grammar School.  The younger children had a governess at home. Frederic was also a church warden.

  Rockmount, Wolverley c.1880

The family then moved to Southport ('Wolverley' 11 Morley Road) in 1882 for a few years, and in the 1891 census his occupation is a 'Steam Crane Maker' and his interests were in J H Wilson & Co. of Liverpool Ltd. and Seacombe, and the North Wales Steam Packet Co. By now there were 11 children and Eliza became pregnant with Alfred who sadly only lived 2 weeks.  This was the only child to die in infancy.

      Wolverley, Southport  1897 (now demolished)

They then moved on to the Wirral to the rather grand looking abode of Thornton Hall, Childer Thornton. They were certainly there in 1899. Frederic died in 1906 aged 63 having spent only a few years at Thornton Hall and is buried in Eastham Parish Church along with his wife Eliza, and daughters May and Marjorie. Also buried there is his daughter-in-law Dora, Percy`s wife. He had been a successful business man and had passed on his engineering abilities to a few of his sons.   I like to think he was an affectionate family man as normally the Victorians loved children.  Hopefully he gave Eliza his full support during her many pregnancies.   Eliza herself appears to have come through life with a firm resolve and I`m sure must have been very proud of her family.   

     Thornton Hall, Wirral 1900 (now a motel/restaurant)

On Frederic`s death Eliza then moved to Northwick House, in Worcester which is where the wonderful photograph was taken of all the family outside the front door.

Northwick House, Worcester 1916/17

Back row standing l-r

Henry Howard (Harry) Bradley, Arthur Frederic Bradley and Vivian (nee Middleton), Francis John (Frank) Bradley and Kathleen (nee Jones), James (Jim) and Jane Kempson (nee Bradley)

Middle row standing l-r

Marjory, May, Ernest Bradley and Maud (Maudo) (nee Owen), Mary (Sissy) (nee Page) and Frederic Charles (Charlie) Bradley, Maud, Ernest (EJC) Cullwick, Neville Bradley and Raymond Lindsay (Bobby) Bradley

Front row sitting l-r

Dorothea (Dora)(nee Young) and Percy Bradley (my grandparents), Eliza Bradley (nee Piggott - my gt.grandmother) Mary Ellen (Nell) Cullwick (nee Bradley) and Margaret (Daisy) Bradley (nee Cadbury)

Missing from photo – Amy Constance Thompson (nee Bradley) and Hubert Thompson in China

Many more photographs appear in the albums of life at Northwick. Eliza died in 1918. Raymond, Maud and Marjorie continued to live there until they sold in 1926. Raymond, Maud and young Eliza (Harry`s daughter) moved to Ombersley.  I have  the Wills for both Frederic and Eliza.

Back to Top

Frederic was the eighth of nine children born to:


The caption on the portrait reads 'This portrait of John Henry Bradley Esq. several times Mayor of Droitwich and for many years Manager of the Salt Manufactories there, was painted at the request of his friends especially those amongst the working classes and presented to Mrs Bradley as a memorial of the great respect and esteem universally entertained towards her husband. 1869.'

John was a successful businessman and Saltworks Owner.  John Henry was born in Birmingham 1807 and was living in Rusholme, Manchester around 1829 when he married Susannah Lovatt by licence in the Parish of Bowden, Cheshire. We don`t know if he was involved in the salt industry at this time. Their two eldest children, Elizabeth and Benjamin (the latter died in infancy) were born at Stoke Prior, Worcs. Jane, Benjamin(2), Mary Emma, Samuel and Frederic were born in Droitwich, John (between Benjamin and Mary Emma) was born in Claines and Charles the youngest in Salwerpe. In 1841 they were living in Salwerpe with Elizabeth age 10, Jane 6, Benjamin 5, John 4, Mary 3 and Samuel 2. In 1851 they had moved to St.Andrew St. in Droitwich along with Frederic and Charles. In 1861 they were living at the Oaklands, Witton.

The Oaklands

John Henry became a wealthy man through the Salt industry. The above portrait, owned by David Bradley, grandson of Neville, has kindly been photographed for me by David. The portrait was presented to John Henry by his employees on his retirement. John Henry became a manager/owner of Chapel Bridge Salt Works and then owned Bradley Salt Works in Hanbury Road, and Droitwich Salt Works, Droitwich. He eventually built and lived in the Oaklands, a large and impressive house which was at a later date used as a nursing/convalescent home and then a children`s home in 1920. It has now been pulled down and is part of a housing estate. He became a prominent member of the community and was Mayor of Droitwich in 1848 - 1850, 1853, 1855, 1858 and 1859. His eldest son John took over the Salt interests, and it seems that John Henry then arranged for Samuel and Frederic to start up in the Iron Foundry business, Samuel in Blakedown and Frederic in Kidderminster. He died in 1880 while living at The Oaklands (Will). Susannah died in 1886.

Daughter Elizabeth died age 29 in 1860.

The first Benjamin as mentioned above, died in infancy.

Jane died age 10 in 1845.

The second Benjamin died in 1852 age 15.

John was born in 1836. In 1851, according to the census for that time, he was staying with his Uncle Benjamin in Rusholme, Manchester. He went on to become an accountant and took over the Saltworks business from his father. He too became Mayor of Droitwich for a number of years in 1875, 1876, 1882, 1883, 1904, and 1905. He was a member of the town council and served continuously for 46 years from 1867. He became an Alderman in February 1884. In 1900 he became a county magistrate. He managed the design and erection of the Droitwich Covercroft Works. He became a member of the first County Council in 1889. He was also on the management committee of the St Johns Brine Baths, a Coventry Almshouse Trustee, Vice President of the Primrose League and ensign of the local company of the Worcestershire Rifles. He married Kate Nash and had a daughter Kate (remained a spinster), and three sons, Benjamin George, Herbert Frederick and Grove. He lived at the Oaklands after his father died. Kate died in 1911 (Will). John died in 1916 (Will) . Benjamin George died 8 March 1929 at Tallow Hill, Worcester. Effects £611 10s 4d.

John`s sister Mary Emma died in 1852 age 14.

Samuel, (born 1839), a younger brother of John, married his first cousin Sarah Oldham from Dublin and they married in Ireland 1868. There are further Bradley/Oldham connections in other generations which prove interesting - the first that we know of is Mary Anne Bradley (this Samuel`s aunt) marrying Thomas Wilson Oldham. Also Benjamin William Smith Bradley`s daughter Lucy married James Oldham.  Samuel`s father John Henry acquired the Springbrook Forge in Blakedown for Samuel in 1856. More Information on Samuel


Charles (born 1844) was an accountant/merchant. His address on his marriage in 1874 was Charlton Kings, Glos. He married Florence Augusta Abell, a solicitor`s daughter from Gloucester and they lived in Twigworth House, Twigworth, Gloucester. In 1872 he was an agent of the Droitwich Salt Co. They had one son Charles Howard b. 1875 in Gloucester.  In 1881 the family are living in Twigworth, Gloucester and Charles snr is a merchant. Charles jnr married Alice Mabel White 19 April 1900 in Richmond, Surrey.  Charles and Alice had  a daughter Muriel Florence b. 1901 and son Charles b. 1908, both in London. The family appears in the 1911 census at 26 Vale Court, Marylebone, London. Charles is a Hall Porter at some flats. Florence his mother is a visitor. Family rumour had it that these children emigrated to Australia about 1919. Charles (snr) died 1898 in Richmond, Surrey (Will). On further investigation it has now been confirmed that Alice and her 2 children emigrated to New Zealand - Alice and Muriel appear on the ship`s passenger list 'Geelong' in 1914 sailing for Victoria, Australia but obviously they travelled onwards to New Zealand.  Son Charles (b.1908) appears as a passenger age 10 on the 'Ramuera' sailing March 17th 1919 to Lyttleton, New Zealand.  This was as a 'Special arrangement with the New Zealand Shipping Company', supposedly because of his age.  His address in London is given as 21 Elm Grove, Hammersmith. Question is, where was father Charles?  I then have a marriage certificate for Muriel Florence dated 25 July 1923 to William O`Grady, 36, a farmer from Ashburton. Muriel is a spinster age 22 living in Timaru.  She gives her father as Charles Howard Bradley a Clerk, so is he still alive in 1923 or has she perhaps given her brother who of course was only 15 at the time?  Her mother is now Alice Mabel Borton, formerly Bradley.  Muriel and William were divorced two years later in Wellington.  I have a death certificate for Charles age 67 (b.1908) dated 11 July 1975 at the Public Hospital, Timaru.  He was a retired Hardware Manager (ex Serviceman).  It appears he had married Ellen Lindsay Mabel Henderson and they had 2 children, a son 23 and daughter 20 (I have names but they may be living).

Back to Top

John Henry was one of 6 children born to:

BENJAMIN (1765-1848)

John Henry was born to Benjamin and Eliza (Baker) and was the fourth child of six. His older siblings were Benjamin, Samuel and Elizabeth. There were two younger sisters Jane and Mary Anne and a half sister and brother Helen Sarah and Henry Anthony, by Benjamin`s second wife Mary Anne Wild. Elizabeth`s birthplace is unknown as yet. Benjamin (jnr) was born in Derby in 1801. The remaining children were all born in Birmingham. John Henry, Jane and Mary Anne were all  baptised in the Carrs Lane Independent Chapel, the two girls being baptised by 'Mr Bradley'. This turns out to be their father Benjamin`s brother the Rev`d Samuel Bradley. Eliza died in Birmingham 1811 and Benjamin remarried to Mary Ann Wild  16th August 1817 by licence in the parish of Middlewich, Cheshire, witnesses were Mary McEvoy, John Augustus Nisbitt McEvoy, Mary Rimer and Anthony Wild.

Benjamin and Eliza(beth) Baker were married by licence at St Martin`s Birmingham on the 23rd July 1799.  Benjamin stated he was from the parish of St Alkmund, Derby and he was an oilman.

Witness on the Licence is William Nevill, Benjamin`s brother-in-law having married Benjamin`s sister Catherine a few years earlier. William was a plater.

'Mr Benjn Bradley and Mrs Benjn Bradley' are mentioned in the Carrs Lane Church minute book 1783-1810 on the 15 May 1805.

Sept. 8 1805 the entry reads ' Mrs Jane Bradley was admitted into full communion with this Church in virtue of a regular and honourable dismissal from the Church in Derby under the pastoral care of the Rev`d James Gawthorne.' This Jane Bradley is Benjamin (snr)`s mother, who is obviously moving from Derby to Birmingham.

Feb. 26 1806 '4) That Mr Orme be requested to converse with Mr and Mrs B. Bradley (who were proposed for admission into this Church at a former meeting) in place of Mr Tutin.'

June 4 1806 ' ...Mr and Mrs Benjamin Bradley unanimously admitted as members of the Church'.

October 1809 ' Mr and Mrs Thornton proposed, also Mr Bradley snr...'

Benjamin (senior) appears to have been a wharfinger in Birmingham at this time and possibly an agent to Francis Egerton, Duke of Bridgewater who was heavily involved in canal building.

Benjamin Bradley is listed in Trade Directories in 1808 - 1821. It is possible he then moved to Manchester and then arrives in Liverpool where an 1839 Directory lists him as 'Gentleman, of Summerseat, Bootle Marsh'. He appears in the 1841 census at Bootle Summerseat with Mary Ann (2nd wife) and Helen and Henry. He is listed in the Trade Directories until 1845 and then Mary Ann is listed until 1851 in Richmond Vale. There are entries in Manchester directories in Pendleton and Salford but whether these are for him or his son Benjamin is not known. Here he is described as a Dry Salter ('dealer in chemical products used in the arts, drugs, gums, etc.; occas. also in oils, sauces, pickles etc. Hence Drysaltery, the store or business of a d.; the articles dealt in by a d.') He appears in the Trade Directories from 1824-1836, his house address being 2 Aldred St. Crescent, Salford and his business at Ridings Court, St. Mary`s Gate. He died in Liverpool in 1848 and is buried at St Mary`s Church, Walton-on-the-Hill, Liverpool.

In the notes I was given there was reference to a sister of John Henry who married a Figgis, and this turns out to be Elizabeth. She died in 1849 in Dublin. (See information on the Figgis Family). In the book 'Figgis of Brighton' there is reference to Elizabeth visiting her father in Liverpool in 1843.

Benjamin and Eliza`s eldest son:

Benjamin William Smith (son of Benjamin) appears in 1841 in Park Place, Highbury Vale, Islington with his wife Emma and children Charles, Lucy and 4 day old Samuel Messenger. Benjamin is a Commission Agent and I think was probably working in Islington when he met and married Emma Johnson. Marriage licence applied for 27 January 1835. In 1851 he is in Birch Lane, Rusholme nr Manchester together with wife Emma and four children, Charles Howard, Lucy Jane, Samuel Messenger and John Bellhouse. This is from the 1851 census for that area and Benjamin`s birthplace is stated as Derby, and his children and wife Emma were all born in Holborn, Middlesex. So it seems that for a period of at least ten years he moved to the London area. After Birch Lane we find him in the 1861 census at 5 Queens Terrace, Moss Side with only son Samuel at home and he is a medical student. He then lived in Longsight Old Hall, Longsight where he is registered as being a cashier/bookkeeper. Emma died in 1869 in Bray Co. Wicklow, and in 1871 Benjamin is a widower living with just his servant Mary Harding at 177 Plymouth Grove, Manchester. Benjamin died (Will) in 1876 at 177 Plymouth Grove, Manchester.

The eldest son Charles Howard (born 1836) appears in the 1851 census with the family in Rusholme and is a scholar at home aged 15, but I can find no trace of him after that.

Lucy Jane has proved another link with the Oldham family by marrying James Oldham, a Dublin merchant in Manchester 1859. They had James Howard, Benjamin, Ernest, Walter F. Winifred, and Lucy. It is presumed they lived in Dublin.

Samuel Messenger (born 1842) was a highly respected doctor in the Manchester area. Click the link for more information.He married Annie Gertrude Cope 11th November 1869 in Ashton Upon Mersey, in the County of Chester. He was a member of the Royal College of Surgeons in 1862 and in 1869 became an FRCS. He worked at the Royal Infirmary and then ran a private practice for a time in Bowness, Windermere. He also made several transatlantic trips between Liverpool and New York while working for Cunard. It appears he was a bit of an artist and showman as he had been known to deliver a lecture in rhyme! He made it known that he was very much against women becoming doctors. It appears he did not enjoy good health and he died while 'resting' and visiting his two sons in 1880 in Ramsgate. He left a widow Annie Gertrude, two sons John Mackenzie and Richard Walter, and a baby Gertrude. His personal estate was 'under £8,000'.  Annie Gertrude died 1884 leaving Gertrude age 4 who probably was then brought up by her mother`s sister  Edith Penelope Friederson and her husband Ernest.  In 1909 there is a marriage for Gertrude to the divorced William Thomas Cope (any relation?) who was 22 years older than she. Alice Maud D'Auquier, the third Cope sister, was a witness at the marriage.  Gertude Cope died 6 August 1910 at Oakfield, Ealing Rd. South Ealing.

Dr Samuel Messenger Bradley (picture from Manchester Archives and Local Studies)

It would be interesting to find out the origin for the 'Messenger' name. Samuel`s wife Annie Gertrude was a daughter of Richard Cope a Manchester merchant. Her younger sister Alice Maud married Emile Cornet d'Auquier, who became headmaster at St Lawrence College, then known as South Eastern College, Ramsgate, Kent. This school appears to have survived a few generations of Bradley attendance! After Samuel`s death in 1880 the two boys remained at St Lawrence under the guidance of their uncle. Sadly both boys died through tragic circumstances - John Mackenzie died age 17 whilst on a walking holiday with his uncle in Switzerland, and Richard Walter died in the Jamaican earthquake in 1907.

Samuel is buried in Ramsgate Cemetery along with his wife Annie who died in 1884 (graves BC 224/225). The grave has a kerb and low railing but is now in a poor condition.

John Mackenzie (Jack) born in Manchester 1870. He was one of the first five pupils at St Lawrence College, Ramsgate (formerly South Eastern College). The following is an extract of the description of the accident in Switzerland,  from the school magazine December 1887 which the school have very kindly allowed me to reproduce:


Those of our readers who are not already acquainted with the news will share in the sorrow universally felt and expressed by all who have learnt the sad intelligence of Jack Bradley`s death.  He was one of the very first pupils of this College, having entered it only a few days after its foundation in 1879, when he was almost a child barely 9 years old, and he continued a pupil until his death.  No boy ever was more popular.  Of a singularly loveable nature, gentle, pure, unselfish, winning in all his ways, of great promise intellectually and, both morally and spiritually such that those who most deeply mourn his loss can feel the deepest consolation, in the knowledge that he has gone up to the Master whom he loved and served upon earth.

The following details have been supplied by one who was with him up to the moment when he was last seen alive.

 'Jack Bradley had gone to Switzerland, where he had been invited to spend his holidays with his uncle, the Headmaster. The party had been at Finshauts only 3 days when the sad accident occurred. During those three days Jack had been full of fun and merriment. On the 3rd August some time in the afternoon, a walk was proposed as far as the Hotel de Tete Noire a distance of not much more than an hour from Finshauts. The party consisted of Mr and Mrs d'Auquier, Mr Montgomery, Jack and Walter Bradley and Haire. Every one was in the highest possible spirits and Jack contributed his full share to the merriment of the party.

Having arrived at Tete Noire someone suggested that the return home should, if possible, be made by a different route. The picturesque little village of Littroz, which lies on the other side of the wild and brawling Trient, and which we had never explored looked very inviting in the bright summer light. We decided at any rate to go as far as the the hamlet.

When we reached it we asked a woman if there was a path to Finshauts. She said 'Yes, but it is not very well marked'. Accustomed as most of the party were to mountain paths, we did not hesitate, but went straight down. After a few minutes however, we reached a meadow surrounded by a dense forest, where all traces of the path disappeared. I ought to explain that between us and Finshauts lay a deep ravine, with a brawling torrent rushing below, and surrounded by jagged rocks and tremendous chasms, which, however, present no danger to one accustomed to Alpine climbing. We scattered in various directions in the hope of finding an easy way down. After a few minutes every one returned into the meadow, with the exception of Jack, who called out to Haire, 'Go on, I am going down a few yards to try and find an easy path for Aunt Alice.' Those were the last words he was ever heard to utter. A few moments after, as he did not come back and we were beginning to get anxious, we shouted for him; but the noise of the torrent made it impossible that he should hear us, or perhaps the poor fellow had already met with his death.

Whether he first fell into one of the crevasses and from this into the river, or whether he reached the side of the water safely and was carried away in attempting to cross, we shall never know.

As the night was coming on fast, and nothing could be done without guides, Mrs d'Auquier and Haire went back to the village whilst the rest of the party continued to shout and to search. Men soon came down and began to explore. One of them guided us home, where we hoped that perhaps Jack might, somehow or other, have made his way. We reached the chalet about 11 at night when we heard that Jack had not been seen. Mr d'Auquier at once organized a party of twenty-five men, who, armed with ropes, lanterns, etc. went down to the ravine and, at the risk of their lives, searched all the banks and crevasses. They were accompanied by a young French doctor, who took his instruments in case of need. All night, we watched from the chalet in the most terrible suspense, but no signals came from the opposite side of the valley to tell us that the searchers had met with any success.

At daybreak the next morning we started again to join the searching party, who had worked all night. We had several men and women carrying provisions for the brave fellows. When we reached the bottom of the ravine they all assembled on the banks of the torrent and had some refreshments. I shall not soon forget the scene that took place soon after, when a Protestant pasteur, who had now joined us, offered up a prayer that our search might be successful. On the banks of the wild Trient, surrounded by towering mountains, in a valley so narrow that only a strip of the blue sky could be seen above, Pasteur Dubois stood on a huge boulder, and offered to God an earnest and solemn prayer, rendered still more impressive by the wild grandeur of the scene and the terrible disaster which had brought so many together. The rugged, sympathetic faces of the peasants, who all remained bareheaded; the evident sorrow shared by all, the solemn voice of the pasteur as it rose even above the roar of the torrent - the whole made a scene which thrilled us with emotion, and which none of us who saw it will ever forget. One of the honest fellows who had been listening most attentively to the pasteur`s prayer was so carried away by his emotion that when he wanted to express his assentiment he forgot the usual Amen or ainsi soit-il of the Roman Catholics and came out with a loud Bravo!

The exploring party divided into bands of five or six, and the search continued the whole day, for no one of our party would believe that Jack had fallen in the torrent. We clung to the hope that he might have fallen down into one of the many crevices which abound among these rocks, and that he might even then be found alive. I myself went over the path described by the woman as 'not very well marked', and found it exceedingly difficult and dangerous for all but the most experienced mountaineers. We discovered no trace or sign which could give us any clue as to how our poor Jack had met with his death. A little moss scraped off a rock at the spot where he first began his descent was all that we found.

Hope was gradually abandoned; but advertisements were put in all the papers, large rewards offered for the recovery of the body, and the search was continued day after day. Many a time we risked our own lives in the fruitless attempts to discover some sign which might explain the mystery. We never had any success.

It would be impossible to express the sympathy, the gentleness, and the affection shewn by the people of Finshauts to our bereaved party. Everything that it was in the power of man to do they did most generously and ungrudgingly. Even the Roman Catholic cure with a generosity which Protestant people are not accustomed to expect from priests (and which they do not always shew themselves) came at once to offer us the best place in the cemetery if God willed that we should find the body. All the inhabitants expressed a wish that we should bury him there.

Time went on and we began to despair of ever finding any trace. On the 6th September however, one of the brothers Chappex (the proprietors of the little hotel at Finshauts) organised another exploring party. They came back with two very sad relics. In the torrent, at a distance of two hundred and fifty yards below the spot where Jack had disappeared, they found the coat which he had worn on the fatal day. It was rent in pieces, the collar intact, however, and there was no mistaking the garment. A little further down they found a piece of his sock, the tape still attached to it with his name on, written by Mrs d'Auquier. A small piece of flesh still clinging to it floated away when Mr Chappex took the sock out of the water. There can be no doubt that, whether he fell from the rocks or reached the river side safely, and was drowned in trying to cross over, the mighty rush of water must have swept his body away in a moment and that death must have been instantaneous.

Up to the present day nothing further has been found. It may be that during the winter, when hard frosts come, the waters of the Trient may go down so much that the body may even yet be recovered, this sometimes occurs many months after accidents happen.

We can only bow our heads, and hope that this sad consolation may eventually be ours. But we have a better and a higher consolation in the knowledge that Jack Bradley was a true servant of Christ, and that he has left behind him the memory of a singularly sweet, gentle and unselfish nature. 'Therefore we sorrow not, even as others which have no hope; for if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. Wherefore we comfort one another with these words'.'

Cari`s note - For those Bradleys who were pupils at St Lawrence - did you ever notice the memorial brass which is in the passage at the entry to the present Chapel (1927)? Dr D A Scales, Senior Classics Master and de facto archivist has been most helpful in supplying all this information after my initial enquiry some years ago. On reading the above, my father Howard, recalled from his school days, a talk mentioning the recovery of a body many years later.

Richard Walter, the second son, attended St Lawrence College and was school captain in his uncle`s last year as headmaster (1888-1889). In 1891 he went to Magdalene College, Cambridge to read Maths. He died in the Jamaican earthquake in 1907. He had married Flossie Ivy Louis Verley and lived at Bamboo Cottage, Kingston. On his death his effects totalled £45.19! In January 2010 I was contacted by Andrew Fleming who has been researching his wife`s Verley ancestors and he has informed me that 'Flossie' survived the earthquake.  He in turn has been in touch with other Verley descendants and although no blood relative,  Nonnie Kristina Bailey from Southern California has connections and has very kindly given permission to show some of the photos she has of Flossie, who incidentally does not appear to have been known by that name in later life - but rather as Ivy de Verley. Ivy returned to England after the earthquake and studied art, then moving to the US where she worked as an artist and married Vesey O'Davoren, an actor who appeared in many films.  Ivy died in 1963 and Vesey died in 1989 aged 101. There was no issue from either marriage.

            Ivy De Verley

Gertrude age 1 and born in Manchester on the 1881 census, a visitor with her mother in the household of James Blain a farmer of Washway Road, Sale. On the 1891 census Gertrude is living with her aunt (mother`s sister?) Edith Penelope Findersen and her husband Ernest, also in Washway Road. In 1901 Edith and Gertrude are living in Duke Street, Southport.  In 1909 Gertrude Messenger Bradley married William Thomas Cope in Brentford Register Office, Middlesex. William was a Foreign Banker and 12 years older

Benjamin`s youngest son John`s second name of Bellhouse was the maiden name of his Uncle Samuel`s wife.

Samuel (son of Benjamin and Eliza) born 1802, married his first cousin Jane (daughter of Rev`d Samuel). They lived first at Grosvenor St. Manchester and then 14, and later 24 Nelson Street, Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester where Samuel was, in the early days a Timber Merchant (1843-52). Then he is listed as an Iron Founder in connection with Edward T Bellhouse (connections with his mother-in-law`s family). Samuel and Jane produced seven children, Frederick, John Samuel, Eliza, David, William Milne, Louisa Jane and Russell.  Jane died 1854 and Samuel married again to a widow Mary Hodges (formerly Mary Oldham). There is reference to a Coat of Arms on a watch presented to Samuel - a talbot passant! (See reference in 'American Connection'). Samuel died in 1861 (Will). Mary survived until 1888 (Will).

   William Milne and son Russell.                   David Bradley (William`s brother)

 These photos from Kathleen, William`s granddaughter.

Frederick died age 6 and John Samuel died age 20.

Eliza married Henry Fuller an architect in 1864 and they had one son and three daughters, Wilfred, Mabel, Jessie and Janet. She was a widow by 1881. Wilfred became a clergyman and married Ana Carlotta, who was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Wilfred was curate of St George`s, Newcastle Under Lyme, Staffs. They had 3 children: Mary Charlotte,  Gardner Henry and Hilda. In 1861, before she married, Eliza was acting as housekeeper to Robert Milne, widower of her aunt Catherine. Robert was an Independent Minister in Tintwistle, Cheshire. I think Eliza died 1919 while living in Lichfield, Staffs.

Eliza Fuller (nee Bradley) with daughter Janet about 1875.

David never married and emigrated to America (via Canada) with his younger brother William in 1860, not long before their father Samuel died. It appears he might have qualified as a teacher. He died in 1899.

William Milne also emigrated to America (see American Connection). The second name of 'Milne' has proved intriguing as again referring to the notes I was given, it was stated that Milne was a colleague of Rev. Robert Morrison who was a well known missionary to China. It was discovered that the Robert Milne mentioned above was the son of the missionary William Milne (born Aberdeenshire 1785) who accompanied Robert Morrison on his travels and became an eminent translator of parts of the Old Testament into Chinese.  Robert had an older brother, William Charles, also a missionary to China. The puzzle that still remains is that William Milne Bradley was born in 1842 in Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester and his aunt Catherine did not marry Robert Milne until 1845.  Were the Bradley and Milne families acquainted earlier on perhaps.

Russell, on the death of his father Samuel in 1860, Russell was taken to Ireland by his step-mother Mary where he was educated.

  Rev. Russell Bradley (photo from Bill Miller).

From a biography written about Neville Figgis mentioning that a relative had become 'Canon Bradley of Limerick' set me off on another trail of investigation that confirmed this was Russell and he was actually a Church of Ireland Minister in Cashel, Newport and Waterford. Russell married Mary (Ellen) Burkitt (3rd dau. of Dr Robert James Burkitt of Waterford) October 20 1875. They had one son Samuel Robert and a daughter Mary Susan Ann. Russell died in Dublin 1937. (See the American Connection for more details on Samuel Robert.) Ellen died in 1917 in Rathgar and Russell died 1937.

Letter from Russell in Rathgan, Dublin to his son Samuel Robert in Woodruff Ave, Flatbush, Long Island, New York dated March 24th 1831.

'My Dear Sam, I recd your welcome letter of the 14th inst today and am glad to learn that you are all well and happy. I am sorry that business is so bad in New York but hope it will improve before long. As you want information about my father & mother I will give you some. My father Samuel Bradley was born in 1802 and died in 1861 when he was 59. He died of pleurisy 4 years after his 2nd marriage to Mrs Mary Hodges who brought me over to Ireland and educated me. He was a partner in an iron foundry, Eagle Foundry in Manchester. My mother, his first cousin Jane Bradley was born July 25th 1809 and died in Sept 1854 aged 45, of consumption. They both died at 40 (12) Nelson St. Manchester where I was born on June 2nd 1850. My fathers father Benjamine Bradley was agent to the Duke of Bridgewater. My mothers father Samuel Bradley was an Independent Minister. He was 84 when he died. My father and mother had 7 children in all, of whom only your Uncle Willey, now 88, and myself survive. With best love in which Mary joins me. Your ever affectionate father Russell Bradley.'

On the bottom of this letter is a PTO, and overleaf it states 'In a later letter Mr Bradley adds that his father Samuel was a partner with Edward Bellhouse in the Eagle Iron Foundry and mortgaged his house in order to buy in. Edward Bellhouse was a very extravagant and reckless man and nearly ruined the business. Samuel had a brother John, a successful man and manager of the Droitwich Worcs. Salt Works. He married and had sons, John, Samuel, Frederic and Charles.' It goes on to give a brief description of Droitwich and its parishes and then a short piece about Francis Egerton, Duke of Bridgewater.

John Henry.

Jane married Robert Smythe 19 November 1846 by licence in the parish of Dodderhill, Worcester.  On the marriage certificate her father Benjamin is ranked as 'Gentleman', Jane`s residence is Rashwood and Robert (widower) is of Monkstown, Dublin and he is a Merchant.  The witnesses were T W Oldham (Thomas William - brother-in-law) and Elizabeth Bradley (who is this?? - sister Elizabeth was by this time married to John Figgis).

Mary Anne married Thomas Wilson Oldham from Dublin. They had eleven children Mary, Elizabeth, Jane, Frances Jane, Stanley, Christina, Jessie, Ellen Eliza, William Benjamin, Sarah Anne (who married her first cousin Samuel Bradley) and Marianne.

Benjamin and his 2nd wife Mary Ann Wild had issue: (these families are not complete on the outline descendant tree - the information is as below)

Helen Sarah appears on the 1841 census in Liverpool with her mother Mary Ann and father Benjamin and again on the 1851 census with her mother and with her brother.

Henry Anthony born in Birmingham and baptised in Manchester at Moseley St. Chapel. He was admitted to the Manchester School 1833. He became an Architect. He moved to Liverpool where he married Margaret Clay in St Mary`s Chapel, Bootle in 1854. He appears on census returns in 1851, 61 and 71 in Liverpool and the 1881 census in Claybrook Road, Fulham, London along with his family Charles (age 21), Benjamin (20), Annie (18), William (17) and Elizabeth (14). All these children born in Liverpool. No trace of any of them after this. Another son Henry Wentworth Bradley married Jessie Clay (cousin!) in 1885. They are living in Chorlton on Medlock, Lancs. in 1891 and Henry is an engineer.

Additional information as at June 2012, given below, very kindly provided by Simon Green (no relation!) who contacted me via this website some time ago.  His mother-in-law is the link to the Bradleys.  Interestingly we have also found that both Helen Sarah and Henry Anthony were re-baptised 1848 and 1850 resp. at Holy Trinity, Hulme, Cheshire.  Unfortunately the page for Henry is missing but the entry for Helen Sarah states her birth as June 21, 1818 (adult) baptised May 7, 1850 Helen Sarah Augusta. Benjamin is a Carrier of Bootle, nr Liverpool and the godparents are Mary Jane Todd, Eliza Keighley and Henry Anthony Bradley.

'Henry Anthony born in Birmingham and baptised in Manchester at Moseley St. Chapel.  He was admitted to the Manchester School 1833.  He became an Architect.  He moved to Liverpool where he married Margaret Clay, daughter of William Clay and Ann Kissock, in St Mary`s Chapel, Bootle in 1854.  He appears on census returns in 1851, 61 and 71 in Liverpool and the 1881 census in Claybrook Road, Fulham, London along with his family Charles Kissock (age 21), Benjamin (20), Annie (18), William (17) and Elizabeth (14).  Other children included Alice born 1855 and Henry Wentworth born 1857.  All these children born in Bootle apart from Alice, who was born in Edgbaston.  Henry Anthony emigrated with his family (apart from Wentworth) to South Africa after the 1881 census and died there some time after 1903.

Alice Dorothea Bradley - appears to have died after the 1871 census.

Henry Wentworth Bradley married Jessie Clay (cousin?) in 1885.  They are living in Chorlton on Medlock, Lancs. in 1891 and Henry is an engineer.  Wentworth registered a number of patents in his name and two other engineers in the early 1900s, relating to the internal combustion engine.

Benjamin Bradley.  Together with his brother Charles Kissock Bradley and Wentworth Norris Clay (brother of Jessie Clay, Henry Wentworth`s wife), Benjamin Bradley was recruited in 1890 into the Rhodesia Pioneer Corps, all becoming Troopers in "C" Troop, which was the artillery unit.  Prior to this they were all resident in Cape Colony.  they all survived the trek into Mashonaland, but Wentworth Norris is recorded as having died shortly afterwards in 1893.

In 1899 Benjamin married Kathleen Fitzpatrick, daughter of James Coleman Fitzpatrick, a Cape Colony Supreme Court Judge and ex-Governor of the gold Coast (Ghana).  Kathleen`s brother James Percy Fitzpatrick became the celebrated author and businessman. who wrote Jock of the Bushveld and instigated the Armistice Day 2 Minutes Silence, among other things.  His descendants are citrus fruit farmers in South Africa.

Benjamin and Kathleen had a son, Benjamin Gerald Bradley, born Bulawayo 1899 and daughters Geraldine, Jeannette (Jenny) and Lillian all born Transvaal.  Benjamin and his family returned to the UK in 1908, living in Eastbourne, with Benjamin listed in the 1911 census as a Director and manager of the Bradley-Williams Ore Extraction Company.  On the outbreak of WW1, Benjamin became a Special Constable in St. Albans and later a Captain in the 9th Batt. Somerset Light Infantry.  Presumably due to his age, he did not see overseas service, and was demobbed in 1919 from the Labour Corps with the rank of Major.  He died at sea in 1927, returning from Gibralter.

Charles Kissok Bradley - stayed in South Africa as a farmer, marrying Edith Warren, daughter of a Colonel Warren.  They had 5 daughters, Edith (Gibby), Greta, Kathleen, Mary and Ruth.

William Bradley - stayed in South Africa, running a coal business.  Married Beryl Barker and had 2 daughters Doris and Elizabeth and one son, William.

Ann (Annie) Bradley - married J. R. Williams, a metallurgical chemist, in South Africa.  No children.  J.R.Williams is the "Williams" in the Bradley-Williams Ore Extraction Co.

Elizabeth (Daisy) Bradley - married Hugh Stevenson in South Africa.  No children.

"Sept 28 at St Mary`s, Bootle, by the Rev. John Crump, incumbent, Henry Anthony Bradley, Esq. architect, Portsmouth, near Todmorden to Margaret Ann, eldest daughter of the late William Clay, Esq. of this town, and grand-daughter of the late Richard Clay, Esq. of Rose-villa, Almondbury, Yorkshire."

Following biographical details were published by the Historical Society of Zimbabwe

Bradley Benjamin 1860-1928 No: 141

Attested into the Pioneer Corps, 7th May, 1890.  Trooper.  Appointed to "C" Troop, 21st June.

Born in Bootle, Lancashire, 1860, the son of an architect.  Emigrated to South Africa (with father, mother, two sisters and brother, Charles) in 1880.  Farmed near Kei river Mouth until 1886.  On the Rand, 1886-1890.

Travelled from Beira to Cape Town, June 1891, and returned by same route with a party sent by Rhodes to cut a road from Beira to Umtali.  Prospected and mined in Penhalonga area.  Carried despatches from Rhodes to Dr. Jameson during 1893 War.  Subscribed, together with A. Tulloch (see below), £3 to the Umtali North Landowners' Association, 1895.  Owned and settled Inyanga Slopes and Inyanga Valley Farms (with Tulloch and C. K. Bradley (see below)).

Captain in 1896 Rebellion.  Took part in defence of Bulawayo.  Left Rhodesia shortly thereafter and lived in Johannesburg for two years.  Returned to Bulawayo, 1898 and lived there until end of Boer War.  Moved to South Africa, 1902, and lived in Johannesburg.

Returned to England in 1908 and set up the Bradley-Williams Ore Extraction Company in Newcastle-on-Tyne.

Served as Major during First World War.  Died at Henley-on-Thames, Middlesex, 1928.

Married Kathleen Fitzpatrick in Johannesburg in 1898.  Had issue, one son, three daughters:

(a) Gerald (born 1899), (b) Jenny, who married Eric Rosenthal, and lives at White Horses, 48 Hillside Road, Fish Hoek, Cape, (c) daughter, (d) daughter.

References: The Umtali Advertiser, 4/6/95, MISC/ED.4/1/1/  Rhodesiana, No. 31 P.37, DA.6/1/1, ff 183-6.'



Back to Top

Benjamin was born to:

THOMAS (1741- )

Benjamin was born to Thomas and Jane Granger. Jane`s parents were Benjamin Granger and Hannah Orme, the Orme surname appearing in the minute books of the Carrs Lane Chapel in Birmingham along with the Bradleys. Benjamin Bradley was the eldest child, his younger siblings being:

Anthony, John, Thomas, Catherine, Sarah, Samuel, Joseph and Harry. All these children were born and baptised at Atlow in Derbyshire. On Benjamin`s baptismal entry his parents Thomas and Jane are 'of Hallfield'. Thomas was a farmer.

Benjamin (bp1765-1848) and Eliza(beth) Baker were married by licence at St Martin`s Birmingham, the licence and obligation being dated 23rd July 1799.

According to the Carrs Lane Chapel minute book entry, Jane Bradley was admitted to Brookside Chapel, Derby 11 October 1787 moved from Derby 4 July 1805, to Birmingham, joining her eldest son Benjamin, in 1805.

Anthony (bp1767 - 1771)and John (1769-1771) both died within a few weeks of each other.

Thomas (bp1770- ?) It is possible this Thomas is the same listed on the 1841 and 1851 census in the Lunatic Asylum in Lichfield, the former census stating he is an 'independent and merchant'.

Catherine, (bp1772-? ) married William Nevill (who was bondsman for Benjamin and Eliza) 8 August 1797 at St Alkmund, Derby.

Sarah  (bp1774-?)

Samuel (bp1777-1860) married Helen Bellhouse. See Rev Samuel Bradley

Joseph (bp1778-1779) survived about six months.  

Harry (bp1780- ?)

I was only able to find out any more about Benjamin`s origins through posting a message on the Derbyshire message board asking if anyone knew anything about the Rev James Gawthorne.  This led to a response from Simon Martin, a professional researcher, who was wholly responsible for leading me to the Derbyshire records for Atlow and Bradbourne and consequently further information about Benjamin and his family.

Back to Top

Thomas was born to

ANTHONY (1695-1760)

Thomas was the ninth child born to Anthony and Catherine Wittaker.  His siblings were:

Henry (bp 1728-1743 Bradbourne)

Sarah (bp1730-1739 Bradbourne)

Anthony (bp Atlow 1732-1743 Bradbourne)

John (bp Atlow 1733-?). He was a Linen Draper in Cornhill, London (mother Catherine`s Obligation 1761)

Anne (bp Atlow 1735-?)

Catharine (bp Atlow 1736-?)

Joseph (bp Atlow 1737-1740 Bradbourne)

Benjamin (bp Atlow 1738-?)

Thomas (bp Atlow 1741-?) married Jane Granger at St Michael, Derby on 13 July 1763 (Jane aged 22). Thomas was a farmer of Atlow in Bradbourne. A Katherine Bradley (possibly his mother?) was a witness at the wedding, also Rebecca Orme.

Joseph (bp Atlow 1741-1772or1774 Bradbourne)

Sarah (bp Atlow 1744 -?) married William Allport of St Chad, Lichfield, Land Surveyor at Atlow 19 March 1775, witnessed by Thomas Bradley. It is presumed she died before 1786 as William married for the second time to Hannah Curzon in Aldridge.

The marriage settlement (copy held) for Katherine Whittacre was between 'Anthony Bradley of Hallfield in the parish of Bradbourne and County of Derby Gent of the first part and Andrew Whittacre of the parish of Sudbury in the same County Gent and Katherine Whittacre spinster Granddaughter of the said Andrew Whittacre of the second part and Thomas Challoner of Lees Hall in the said County of Derby Gent and William Greaves of Mayfield in the County of Stafford of the Third part' and involved the sum of £700 and land at Upper or Over Mayfield in the County of Stafford or commonly known as Nether Lomfield Gate, Lower field gate, the Strongford, the Hasle Rows and the Ottomy Pingle. These lands it appear were acquired for the sum of £990 by Anthony`s brother Henry of Woodhead, Kniveton Gentleman, son and heir of the late Henry Bradley of Bradborne Gentleman in May 1724 from 2 spinster daughters of the late Gilbert Mathon late of the City of Durham, namely Deborah and Eleanor and also their mother Anne, now the wife of George Bowes of Durham, who in turn had made indenture dated 20 March in the same year with Anthony Salvin Gentleman of Durham. In 1727 Henry sold the lands to Anthony for the sum of £1200.

On 28 October 1743 Anthony was declared bankrupt and an indenture drawn up between William Fitzherbert of Tissington Esq, Francis Higginbotham of Ashborne Gentleman and John Chatterton of Ashborne Gentleman of the one part and Thomas Challoner of Sudbury Wood Gentleman and Joseph Bradley of Bradborne Yeoman both Creditors of Anthony Bradley of Hallfield Cheesefactor and Timber Merchant of the other part.

A lovely descriptive passage taken from 'A Georgian County Town - Ashbourne 1725-1825 Vol. 1 Fashionable Society' by Ashbourne local History Group mentions these Bradleys and many thanks goes to the Group for their hard work and making this available.

'Mercers and drapers were regarded as superior tradesmen and theirs was one of the few retail trades deemed suitable for the sons of the established or aspiring gentry.  Another superior trade also requiring considerable capital but without the same social cachet was that of grocer.  One family involved in both were the Bradleys, one of the best known business names in Ashbourne up to the end of the Victorian period.  Originating from yeomen farming stock in the Bradbourne and Atlow areas, two members of the family probablyt established themselves, like the Longdens, in the cheesetrade; both Anthony Bradley of Bradbourne (1695-1760) and his near contemporary Henry Bradley of Ashbourne were cheesefactors.  Another Anthony (1728-1811) became a mercer in the Market Place, and ventured into banking in the 1780s, to be followed by a partnership in a new cotton mill at Hanging Bridge.  Unfortunately he over-reached himself and was declared bankrupt in the 1790s.  His daughter married into the local gentry, however, becoming the bride of John Hayne of Ashbourne Green Hall in 1795.'

Also from the same book there is a list of those purchasing licences to use hair powder on their wigs (1796) and Anthony Bradley jr and Henry Bradley of Market Place are mentioned.


Anthony died in 1760 and Letters of Administration were granted to his widow Catharine, Samuel Wylde (Mercer) and Thomas Cantrell (cutler). Anthony was described as a Cheesefactor. An inventory of the stock and household goods was taken 8th September 1760 by John Greensmith and Francis Wheeldon.  For example: 10 calves £12 10s, 3 Stirks £6 6s, 71 sheep £63 18s, 19 milking cows and a bull £110 and various other livestock. Also livestock at Leehall (presumable the residence) and this included 200 cheeses £24. It then goes on to list all household goods in the 'garret', 'closet', 'best parlor', 'little parlor', 'kitchen', 'bed chamber', 'little chamber', chamber over house', and 'the next room'

Then in 1761 on Catharine`s death, son John was granted Letters of Administration.

Back to Top

Anthony was born to

HENRY (d. 1720)

Anthony was one of 9 children born to Henry and Sarah (?).

Henry (eldest son according to his father`s Will dated 1720) married Mary Brough (daughter of Mr Samuel Brough Rector of Carsington)and had 3 children Mary (bp.Atlow 1716), John (bp. Atlow 1718-1721 Bradbourne) and Sarah (bp 1719 Atlow-1722 Bradbourne).

Elizabeth (bp Bradbourne 1693 -?) married William Greaves and had 2 children Sara and William.

Anthony (bp 1695 Bradbourne - 1760 Bradbourne) married Catherine Wittaker

Martha (bp 1697) married Thomas Buxton 1719 at Bradbourne.

Sarah (not 21 in 1720, - 1724 Bradbourne)

Joseph (not 21 in 1720, - 1772 or 4 Bradbourne) Yeoman, married Thomasin Beresford of Cold Eaton 6 January 1723 at Alsop en le Dale. Thomasin died 1768 at Bradbourne. 4 children, Henry (bp 1725 Bradbourne - 1784 at Bradbourne, of Ashbourne), Mary (bp 1727 Bradbourne - 1802 Bradbourne, of Ashbourne), Anthony (bp 1729 Bradbourne - 1811), a sister ?

Anice (not 21 in 1720) bur. 1727 Bradbourne)

John (not 21 in 1720)

Benjamin (1707-1780)(not 21 in 1720 re his father`s Will) - according to the Greaves Family History, was vicar at Mayfield 1733-34. Also from the Cambridge Alumni: Coll. Emmanuel entered 1726. B. 1707 died 1780. School Merchant Taylors Matric 1726. BA 1729-30, MA 1737. V. of Mayfield Staffs 1733-5. R. of Knossington Leics. 1736, V. of Stapleford 1768-74. D. Sept. 17 1780 age 72. MI at Cold Orton.  Additionally from the CCED, Rector Thornton-le-Moor 1774-81.  Where was he 1737-68?

My 7xGt.Grandfather Henry Bradley of Bradbourne, Derbyshire in the18th Century.  Henry died in October 1720 and I have a copy of his Will dated July 1720 in which provision is made for his Mother who was obviously living at the time.  It appears he was a man of some property in the surrounding area and into Staffordshire, e.g. Mathfield (to Henry), Hognaston, Turlowfield and Hallfield (to Joseph).  Anthony appears to have been given £50 and John and Benjamin £200? The daughters were also looked after. I have copies of various indentures regarding the transfer of some of these lands.

Joseph, Sarah, Anice, John and Benjamin were all mentioned in their father Henry`s Will in 1720 as being under the age of 21.

In an indenture dated 1725 concerning land at Mathfield, Staffs Henry (jnr) is 'of Woodhead in the parish of Kniveton', and also including George and Ann Bowers, Anne Mathon and Deborah and Eleanor Mathon.

In an indenture concerning land at Mathfield, Staffs. dated October 1727, Henry Bradley (jnr) is 'of Woodhead, Kniveton', and Anthony is 'of Hallfield'.

Back to Top