Welcome to the Ives family web site. This branch of the family originates from the town of Bacup in the Rossendale Valley, Lancashire. Our ancestor William Ives and his family arrived in the Stacksteads area of Bacup sometime between 1876 and 1878. William and his ancestors came from the Burnham area of North Norfolk and his wife Clara came from Ely, Cambridgeshire.
It must have been in the pursuit of employment that led William to the Rossendale Valley. There could not have been a greater contrast between the thriving industrial town of Bacup with its coal mines, quarries and cotton mills and rural Norfolk. Nevertheless, William and his family would have felt at home, as they were one of many North Norfolk families to find a home in 19th century Rossendale.
The prospect of steady work in the cotton mills must have been attractive to those engaged in the poorly paid seasonal agricultural labour of East Anglia. There appears to have been migration schemes to keep the cotton mills of Bacup supplied with labour as the Bacup Times of 20th November 1875 reports:
Importation of Millhands
Not everyone welcomed these strangers. A research paper that can be found in Bacup Library titled Ordinary People (Bacup) by Jeanette Edwards 1990 describes the feelings towards the migrant families from East Anglia. The following is attributed to a Mrs Jones (b.1898) of Bacup:
They were brought in by the trainload to work in the mills... they were called yellow bellies. Why? Because they were foreigners - they worked for less. Some people say the Hoyle family (mill owners) ruined the town because they lowered the wages... bringing in these people.
I cannot help think that William and his family would have been better off in his native Norfolk. William's brothers appeared to have fared much better continuing in the family occupation of brick making. By 1883, William's eldest brother Edward was the managing brick maker at Great Bircham and he probably provided the headstone for the grave of his parents Edward and Celia Ives. William died a poor man and he was buried in a public grave in Bacup Cemetery.
My Father, Frank Ives snr. has compiled a short history of our Ives family from the time William arrived in Stacksteads. With the help of genealogy resources available on computer and the various records available in Norwich it has been possible to draw up a family tree that takes us back into the 18th century.
One of the best genealogy resources available is the 1851 census for Norfolk on CD-ROM. This web site includes a map of Norfolk showing the distribution of the Ives surname throughout Norfolk in 1851.
Researching family history often turns up the unexpected. One such incident has been the discovery of a set of old photographs that may have once been in Williamís possession. Apparently, they were taken in Norfolk at one of the many country houses that can be found in the county. After a search, lasting two years it has been possible to identify Merton Hall as the location of the photographs. We have yet to discover the connection with Merton Hall and find out who are on the photographs.
There already exist a number of published Ives family trees. The most notable one I have found is the Ives of Norwich pedigree with several members of this family serving as mayors of the city. They appear to have been part of the 18th century nouveau riche, obtaining their wealth from the woollen trade. This wealth enabled them to build Catton Hall on the outskirts of Norwich in 1780 and is situated in Catton Park, which was the first commission of Humphry Repton (1752-1818), the leading landscape gardener of that time. Although this Ives family is not related to ours, I have include their family tree on this site as a matter of interest.
I hope you find this web site both informative and interesting.
Frank Ives jnr., March 2002
Maintained by Frank Ives
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Copyright © 2007 Frank Ives
Last revised: January 2007
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