Alfred Newell – 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 23

In life some people go well and beyond what is expected, some love whole heartedly and some are our own personal heroes, that knight in shining armour whom we all dreamed about as children.
I’m extremely lucky and proud to have an ancestor who gave all he could, loved with every inch of his heart and changed life’s of many by just being him.

This week I’m especially proud to tell you all about the life of, my Great, Great-Grandfather, Alfred Newell, our very own knight in shining armour.

Alfred Newell was born on the 5th January 1864 at Awbridge, Hampshire, England, to Joseph Newell and Jane Newell nee Wilton.
Little did Alfred’s Father Joseph and his Mother Jane know, their new-born son would be the saving grace to my Great, Great-Grandmother Estella Rudgley and her children.
That baby that laid in their arms, would change the lives of so many. His love would entwine, radiate and humble the descendants yet to come. He would be remembered for the love he gave and for his wonderful soul.
Alfred already had three brothers, Edward, Frederick, Harry and one sister, Ellen. You can read more about them here.
Joseph was working as a Farm Labourer.
Jane registered Alfred’s birth on the 5th February 1864. She signed with an X.

Birth Cert

Joseph and Jane, baptised Alfred on the 14th February 1864, at St Mary’s, Michelmersh, Hampshire, England. The perfect date, for a soul so full of love.

Alfred Newell, Christening

Sadness and heartbreak filled the hearts of the Newell family when Alfred’s, one year old Brother Harry died on the 10th April 1864.
He died from Bronchitis, at Awbrigde, Michelmersh, Hampshire, England.
Jane registered his death on 11th April 1864. She signed with an X.

Harry Newell, Death Certificate.

Harry was buried at, St Mary’s, Michelmersh, Hampshire, England, on the 15 April 1864.

Harry Newell Burial

I’m pretty grateful that Alfred would have been to young, to remember the pain, the heartbreak, his Mother and father were living through. To watch your parents grieve for the loss of their second child, must have been horrific for those older enough to understand.
And while they lived through the darkest of day, time kept ticking and the world kept  turning, life had to go on not matter how much pain they would have been going through.

Life did continue and on the 9th of January 1866, Jane gave birth to their third daughter, Rose Newell, at Awbridge, Hampshire, England.
Joseph was working as a Farm Labourer.
Jane Newell nee Wilton, registered Rose’s birth on the 17th March 1866. She signed with a X.

Rose Newell, Birth Certificate.

Rose was baptised at St Mary’s, Michelmersh, Hampshire, England, on the 13th April 1866.

Rose Newell, Christening

Jane gave birth to their 5th son, Ephraim Newell, on the 26th April 1867.
Joseph was working as a Farm Labourer.
Jane, registered Ephraim’s birth on the 25th May 1867.
She signed with a X.

Ephraim Newell, Birth Certificate.

Ephraim was baptised on the 16th June 1867 at, St Mary’s, Michelmersh, Hampshire, England.

Ephraim Newell, Baptism

Janes childbearing days were still not over, as on the 20th October 1868, Jane and Joseph welcomed their 4th daughter into the world.
They named her, Emmeline Newell.
Emmeline was born at Awbridge, Hampshire, England.
Her mother Jane Newell nee Wilton, registered her birth on the 1st December 1868.
She signed with an X.
Joseph was working as a Farm Labourer.

Emmeline Newell, Birth Certificate.

Emmeline was baptised on the 22nd January 1864, at St Mary’s, Michelmersh, Hampshire, England.

Emmeline Newell, Christening

On the 2nd of April 1871, the census was taken, which finds, Alfred, his Father Joseph, his Mother Jane, and his siblings, Rose, Edward, Ephraim, Frederick, Emmeline and Ellen, residing at Upper Ratley, Awbridge, Hampshire.
Joseph was working as a Agricultural Labourer. Edward and Frederick were working as Shepherd’s.
Their neighbors were James Terry, his wife Elizabeth and their daughter Elizabeth A Terry.

Name Age
Joseph Newell 23
Jane Newell 39
Edward Newell 18
Frederick Newell 16
Ellen Newell 11
Alfred Newell 7
Rosa Newell 5
Ephraim Newell 3
Emeline Newell 2

Joseph Newell 1871 Census

Joseph and Jane welcomed their, 6th son into their household. On the 2nd March 1872. Jane gave birth to Robert Newell, at Awbridge, Michelmersh, Hampshire, England.
Joseph was still humbly working as a Farm Labourer.
Jane, registered his birth on the 4th April 1872. She signed with an X.

Robert Newell, Birth Certificate.

Robert was baptised on the 27th October 1872 at, St Mary’s, Michelmersh, Hampshire, England.

Robert Newell, Christening

The 1881 census shows, Alfred, his Father Joseph, his Mother Jane, and siblings Robert, Rose, Ephraim and Emmeline residing at Ratley, Awbridge, Hampshire.
Alfred and his Father were working as General Farm Labourers, Rosa was a, General House Servant and Ephraim was a Post Boy (C S Man).
Their neighbors were, Alfred’s Great-Uncle, George Newell, his Great-Aunt Sarah Newell nee White, and their 7 children, Alan, Leonard, George, Florence, Ernest, Margaret and Truman.

Name Age
Joseph Newell 52
Jane Newell 49
Alfred Newell 17
Rosa Newell 15
Ephraim Newell 13
Emilene Newell 12
Robert Newell 9

joseph Newell 1881

There is no trace of Alfred until the next census. I wonder what he was doing? How was his free time was spent ?

The 1891 census was taken on the 5th April, which shows, Alfred still living with his parents Joseph and Jane and his Brother Robert. They were residing at Ratley, Awbridge, next door to the Vicarage.
Joseph, Alfred and Robert were all working as General Labourers.
Their neighbours were, George H Jones (Vicar), Mary Roud, Charles and Jane Jopp. Also James Terry, his Wife Ellen Terry nee Ventham and their children, Walter, Edith and Arthur also Ellen’s father, James.

Name Age
Joseph Newell 62
Jane Newell 59
Alfred Newell 27
Robert Newell 19


Between the 6th April 1891 and the 20th of November 1890, Alfred moves out of his parents home and moves into a new home with a lady called Estella Rudgley. They were living at 10 Pound Street, Shirley, Southampton with Estella’s two daughters Alice Louisa and Florence Ellen and her son Frank, my Great-Grandfather.

On the 21st November Alfred and Estella got married at The Register Office, South Stoneham, Southampton, Hampshire, England.
Estella was the daughter of Andrew Rudgley and Maltila Rudgley Nee Rudgley.
Alfred was 29 years old, Estella was 30.
Alfred was working as a Gardener and his Father Joseph, was a Labourer. Estella’s Father Andrew, was a Carter.
Their witnesses were Daniel Boys and Mary Barfoot.

Marriage Certificate

It was not long before Alfred and Estella, were expecting.

Alfred Newell was born on the 3rd February 1893 at Cherville Street, Romsey, Hampshire, England.
Alfred was working as a Gardener.
Estella registered Alfred’s birth on the 13th March 1893.

Alfred Newell 1893

Shortly after, Amy Kate Newell was welcomed into the family, on the 6th August 1894. She was born at Cherville Street, Romsey, Hampshire.
Alfred was working as a Gardener Labourer.
Estella registered her birth on the 18th September 1894.

Amy Kate newell 1894

Alfred and Estella, welcomed Edith Maude Newell into the world on the 6th September 1896. She was born at, 11 Cherville Street, Romsey, Hampshire, England.
Alfred was still working as a Gardener Labourer.
Estella registered her birth on the 13th October 1896.

Edith Maud Newell 1896

Alfred than faced one of the worst heartbreaks known to man, when his Mother, died. I can only imagine the feelings he must have felt, loosing his mother. To lose either one of your parents is excruciatingly painful, it rocks your world at the core, a heartbreak you can never recover from, the pain never leaves and will haunt you until the day you join them in the afterlife.
Jane Newell nee Wilton died on the, 11th December 1897, at Awbridge, Hampshire. Jane was 65 years old and died from Phthisic and Morbus Cardis.
Alfred’s Father Joseph, was present at Jane’s death. He registered it on the 13th December 1897. He signed with an X.

Jane Wilton Dearh Cert

Life would have had to, return to normal, there were mouths to feed, and a roof to keep over their heads but I wonder if Alfred would have found peace and tranquillity in the gardens he worked? If he stopped to watch the beauty unfold in front of his eyes as the roses blossomed, as the earth came alive around him. I really hope he did, we all need that inner peace at one time or another.

A short year later, Alfred became a father again when Estella gave birth to Beatrice Dorothy Newell,
She has born on the 18th December 1898, at 11 Cherville Street, Romsey, Hampshire.
Alfred was still working as a Gardener Labourer.
He registered Beatrice’s birth on the 2nd February 1899.

Beatrice D Newell 1898

It’s wasn’t long before they were welcoming another daughter into the world. Ella Gertrude Newell was born on the 21st October 1900 at 11 Cherville Street, Romsey, Hampshire.
Alfred was still working as a Gardener Labourer.
Estella registered Ella’s birth on the 11th December 1900.

Ella G Newell birth 1900

Estella must have been absolutely exhausted. How did she find the time, let alone the energy to get jiggy with it with Alfred, with all those children to look after. I just get a feeling that he helped Estella out around the home.

By the time the 1901 Census was taken, Alfred, Estella, and their 7 children, Amy, Edith, Ella, Florence, Beatrice, Frank and Alfred were still living at number 11 Cherville Street. The occupy 4 rooms.
Alfred was now working as a Nursery Gardener. Florence was working as a general servant – domestic.
Their neighbors were, George Putnam, his wife Emma and their children William, Emily and Elizabeth.

Name Age
Alfred Newell 37
E Lalla Newell 39
Florence R Newell 15
Frank R Newell 11
Alfred Newell 8
Amy Newell 6
Edith Newell 4
Beatrice Newell 2
Ella Newell 5/12


1905 welcomed a new daughter, Eveline Winifred Newell.
She was born at 9 Cherville Street, Romsey, Hampshire, England, on the 26th April 1905.
Alfred was working as a Gardener Labourer.
Estella registered her birth on the 13th May 1905.

Eveline Newell Birth 1905

Just a few short years later, their home, their hearts and their souls were filled with grief, when Alfred and Estella’s daughter, Edith Maude Newell died, on the 26th September 1907 at 9 Cherville Street, Romsey.
She died from Diphtheria (10 days) and Cardiac Failure.
Poor Alfred was present at her death, and he registered her death on the same day, the 26th September 1907.

Edith Maud Newell Death

I dread to think what was going through Alfred’s mind when he traveled to the registers office? How he would have managed to say the words that nightmares are made from? How he kept standing? And how on earth, did he have the strength to organise his daughters funeral.
Somehow, I really don’t know how, he managed to. Alfred and Estella buried their 11 year old Daughter, just a day later on the 27th September 1907.
Edith Maude Newell, was buried at Romsey Cemetery, Botley Lane, Romsey, Hampshire, in Grave S179.

edith maud newell Cemetery Plan

How do you come back from that? How does any parent get over loosing a child?
In Alfred’s wife, Estella’s case, I believe she didn’t, as on the 21st December, the same year 1907, Estella died at her home, 9 Cherville Street,Romsey, Hampshire.
Estella died from Heart Failure, consequent on long standing disease of the organ.
An inquest into her death was held on the 23rd of December 1907.
Estella was only 45 years old, that’s only a few years older than I am, no age to die.

Estella Death Certificate

Did she die of a broken heart?
Her life was hard, the judgement that would have been thrown at her for having three illegitimate children. The struggle of bringing them up on her own, until her knight in shining armour Alfred, walked into Estella’s and her three children’s lives and took care of them, loved them as any father and husband would. He’s a hero in my books.

Alfred, buried his wife on the Boxing day, 26th December 1907 at Romsey Cemetery, Botley Lane, Romsey, Hampshire, in Grave S180, next to his their daughter Edith Maude Newell.

edith maud newell Cemetery Plan

On the 13th February 1909, Alfred’s Father, Joseph Newell, died at Romsey Workhouse, Romsey, Hampshire, England.

He died from, Congestion of the Lungs and Heart Failure.
E Simmonds, Matron of the workhouse Registered his death on the 15th February 1909.

Joseph Newell Death Certificate

Poor Alfred must have felt very alone in the world after losing his daughter, his wife and his father in such a short time period. Thank goodness he had so many children around him, to lift his spirits and help around their home.

The 1911 census shows, Alfred and his children, Alice and Frank Rudgley/Newell, Alfred, Amy, Dorothy, Gertrude and Eveline Newell, residing at 9 Cherville Street, Romsey, Hampshire.
Alfred was working as a Gardener in a nursery, Alice was a Housekeeper for her Father, Frank was a Porter at a grocers, Alfred (Junior) worked in the Romsey Jam Factory, and Amy was a Domestic Servant.
They occupied 5 rooms.

Name Age
Alfred Newell 47
Alice Newell 26
Frank Newell 21
Alfred Newell 18
Amy Newell 16
Dorothy Newell 12
Gertrude Newell 10
Evelyn Newell 5

Just up the street at, number 9 Cherville Street, Romsey, a widow Sarah Emily Watts nee Tigg, was bringing up her 7 children, Sarah Ellen, Mary Ann, Annie Beatrice, Alfred James, Florence Louisa, Elizabeth Ada and Edith May Watts. 3 of which were living with her, after losing her husband Alfred Watts in the September quarter of 1902.

Alfred Watts, Death Index

Florence Louisa, Elizabeth Ada and Edith May Watts, were all at school and Sarah was working as a Laundress.

Name Age
Sarah E Watts 44
Florence L Watts 13
Elizabeth A Watts 9
Edith M Watts 7

Sarah Watts 1911

Alfred and Sarah, became friends, probably bonding over their grief, fall in love and married.

They married in the January to March quarter of 1915, in the Romsey district. I have ordered their marriage certificate, unfortunately it didn’t arrive in time, as you can only order paper marriage certificates, which take longer to arrive. I will update you with the information as soon as I have it.

Alfred Newell and Sarah Tigg:Watts Marriage Index

Over the next few years, Alfred saw his children marry, welcomed many grandchildren and lost his Sister, Ellen Kemish nee Newell and his Brother, Ephraim Newell.  World War II was looming, futures were uncertain, old age was setting in.

And on the 14th March 1939, Alfred draw his last breath and slipped away from this world, at his home, 29 Cherville Street, Romsey, Hampshire, England.

27B7DE07-B24B-4F02-9AC6-05BF23797F7C©️Rod Briggs

He died from Heart Failure, Acute Bronchitis and Chronic Bronchitis.

Cause Of Death

His Step-daughter, Elizabeth Ada Wheeler nee Watts, registered his death on the 14th March 1939. She was present at his death.

Registy Of Death

Alfred Newell Death Certificate

Alfred’s family buried him on the 17th March 1939, at Romsey Cemetery, Botley Road, Romsey, Hampshire England, in grave number Q244.

Alfred Newell Cemetery Plan

Alfred, throughout his life give life to six children, possibly nine, he brought up those nine children, supporting them, loving them, cared from them, he than welcomed seven more step children into his heart, supporting, loving and caring for them as they were his own.

His heart without a shadow of a dealt was pure and I am internally grateful to him for loving my Great, Great-Grandmother Estella, for loving her children and bringing them up as his own. I have a gut feeling that Frank was his, his own blood, Newell blood and even if he wasn’t it doesn’t matter because this man, gave his all, to give all the children in his care, the best, most loving up bringing anyone could wish for. To me, that’s worth more than blood and DNA.
To me that’s family at its finest.

RIP Great, Great-Grandad
Alfred Newell



I have brought and paid for all certificates throughout
Please do not download or use them without my permission.
Thank you.

Also thank you to Rod Brigg, for allowing me to use his photo of Cherville Street.


11 thoughts on “Alfred Newell – 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 23

  1. Once again Georgina you have really brought life to your family. We have such a link to each other. The Pearce’s the Roud’s The Tutts and now your Great Great grandfather being married to my husbands great grandmother Sarah Watts.
    So much love in your words.
    Val Darke was Roud x


  2. You do such an amazing job Georgina, bringing these relatives to life. You gave me a deeper insight into Alfred’s life (my 3rd cousin 2xremoved). Thank you.
    Luv Lyn x


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  7. Hi my name is Clare – I am Alfred & Estella’s great grand daughter ( Evelyn’s grand daughter). Amazing to find this online as I have just been looking at the family history with my mother ( Evelyn’s daughter). Evelyn lived to the grand age of 106 years so shared many memories of life with family in Romsey. I have many fond memories of her and sisters ‘Nanny’ (Alice), Auntie Doll ( Beatrice Dorothy) & think I met Alfred jr. as a child & Amy – I may have met more of the Newell family but possibly I was too young to remember. I would be happy to share so please feel free to make contact . Best wishes ‘cousin’ .


  8. Hi Georgina my mother and I have family photos and knowledge of the Newell family history handed down by Evelyn that we would love to share with you.
    Take care
    kind regards Clare & Anne


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