The Life Of Alice Southwell, 1861-1915, Part 1.

When we were young aging seemed like fun
We couldn’t wait until the age was done
We then hit our teens and with life came
Some responsibility but still lots of games.
And so the twenty’s were realized
And we found we had to get organized.

And before you knew it we hit the big three o!
A party was had, the energy was glad, oh, what a show
Before you knew it they were saying over the hill
 You hit the age of forty and had responsibility for all the bills
Fifty crept up ever so slow
But you wonder where did the years go?

With 60 approaching you look back and see
How fast the years went by, oh, you need more coffee
70 flys by in a blink of an eye
You just grin and kiss the years goodbye.
Then 80 arrives with a blast
With family around you wondering how long you will last.

The Years Go By
Poet: Catherine Pulsifer, © 2020

Throughout my family history research, I often come upon a soul whom, pulls deeply on my heart strings. They drive a need in me to dig deeper and harder than ever before to uncover their lives and secrets. It’s not always an easy task but a journey I give my entire being to. 
If you know the right places to look and have the subscriptions to gather the documents, piecing together their lives, can be very straightforward but delving into their personality isn’t as easy. It’s only through the documentation that you can start to form snippets of their character, their will, their strengths, their struggles and their determination.
You start to begin to understand a very small amount about how they must have felt and understand a little of how their life’s must have been. 
It’s extremely hard to fully know what they would have actually been like as a person but still a bond is somehow formed. 
Alice Southwell, the next ancestor we have been hard at work researching, is one of those souls. She’s pulled on every emotion, she conquered a piece of my heart, she’s drawn me to suspicion and she’s definitely driven my eyes to well on numerous occasions, as we discovered gut wrenching sadness throughout her life. 
I am 100% sure, Alice is forever embedded in my heart and memory and I soulfully wish I could have met her. I wonder if she will captivate you as she has Sarah and I?
Before I begin to share her life journey with you, let’s take a look at her surname SOUTHWELL.
The surname Southwell is a locational surname of Olde English and Anglo-Saxon pre 9th century origins. It derives from former residence at the town of Southwell in Nottinghamshire, or possibly from a place or places called originally ‘sud waella’, translating as the ‘spring to the south’. The surnames of Northwell and Norwell, Eastwell, and Westell, also exist in small numbers to confirm that the origin is correct. The town name is a very early recording being found in the charter rolls for the year 958 a.d. in the spelling of ‘Sudwellan’ and then again at the time of the famous Domesday Book in 1086, where the spelling is given as ‘Sudwelle’.
The ‘d’ in these ancient spellings gave a sound similar to the modern ‘th’ or the Welsh ‘dd’. Although arguably the name is from Nottinghamshire, the earliest church recordings are in London. The reason being that people who travelled away from their home area, were most easily identified by their new neighbours by the name of the place from whence they came. Early examples of the surname recordings include John Southuell of Babworth, Nottinghamshire, on January 27th 1639, and (another) John Southwell, but from a century later, who married Mary Barlow at St Lukes, Nottingham, on August 19th 1735. The name has six entries in the National Biography, the most famous, or perhaps infamous being, Sir Robert Southwell, who perhaps more than any other person, was responsible for the destruction of the monasteries under the command of King Henry V111. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Sir Robert Southwell, which was dated 1504 – 1564, privy councillor and master of the ordnance, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st, known as ‘Good Queen Bess’, 1558 – 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to “develop” often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
More information about the Southwell name, occupations etc, can be found here.

Right lets get to it shall we,
without further ado, I give you,

The Life of,
Alice Southwell,
1861 – 1915.

It was the year 1861, Queen Victoria was on the throne, Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston (Liberal) was Prime Minister, about 350 convicts held on St Mary’s Island at Chatham Dockyard took over their prison in a riot, the American Civil War breaks out, leading to Lancashire Cotton Famine (1861–1865), the British government resolves to remain neutral. The British Empire establishes bases in Lagos to stop the slave trade. The HMS Warrior, the world’s first ocean-going (all) iron-hulled armoured battleship was completed and commissioned. Lord Palmerston completed his 77th year. His Lordship was born on the 20th October 1784 and on Thursday the 19th of December 1861, in Wellow, a village and civil parish in Hampshire, England, George Southwell, a Wood Dealer, Son of Joseph Southwell and Hannah Southwell nee Long, and Sarah Southwell nee Reeves, daughter of John Reeves and Mary Reeves (nee Friend or Rose), welcomed a baby girl into their family of 5 children, Martha, Emily, Emma, Ellen and George Southwell.
They named her, Alice Southwell.
Alice, was born at East Wellow, Romsey, Hampshire, England, on Monday the 9th of December 1861.
Alice’s Mother, Sarah, travelled to the town of Romsey, from their home in East Wellow, on Saturday the 11th of January 1862, and registered Alice’s birth.
Sarah signed with an x (most likely due to illiteracy.)

I can picture Sarah, in her Sunday best, wrapped in a cape protecting her from the cold with babe in arms, and pride in her heart, as she made her way, most likely by horse and cart, along dirt roads to register her baby girl. I’m sure she would have been showing off her wee girl to all she came across on her travels.
I’m sure that pride continued when George and Sarah, baptised Alice at Saint Margarets Church, East Wellow, Hampshire, England, on Sunday the 05th of January, 1862.
I wonder how and if they celebrated, would it have been a family celebration, or just part of their normal Sunday service and normalcy commenced afterwards. I like to think, the whole family got together to celebrate the miracle of life.

The parish church of St. Margaret of Antioch is a flint-faced stone structure consecrated in 1215, and the interior contains some wall paintings from this period. Archaeological evidence suggests the site was previously home to a Saxon church and its possible that one of the arches in the chancel dates to around 1180.
In 1251 Henry III of England granted a charter to Wellow to hold an annual fair on the eve of St Margaret’s Day. A chancel was added in the 13th century and a south aisle in the 15th. A number of internal fittings come from a now demolished church at Sherfield English from where they were moved in 1860.
The church is notable as the burial site of Florence Nightingale, whose family home was the nearby Embley Park, now a private school. St Margaret’s is a destination for many visitors interested in Nightingale and the history of nursing. The church is some distance from the majority of the modern housing, and there is no archaeological evidence that there was ever a substantial settlement close to the church.

Over the next ten years Alice and her family welcomed two siblings into the family.

Esther Southwell, was born on the 19th February 1866, in the Romsey district of Hampshire. The census give her birth location as  East Wellow.
Ester, was baptised on the 25th of March 1866 at The parish church of St. Margaret of Antioch, East Wellow, Romsey, Hampshire.
Ester later married George Richard Webb, son of Joseph Webb and Mary Webb nee Gear. She lived a long life and died in the December quarter of 1945 in her home town aged 79.

And Walter Southwell (My hubbies Great Great Grandfather and my 2nd Cousin 5x removed) was born on the 28th October 1869, at Shotash, East Wellow, Romsey, Hampshire.
Their mother Sarah, registered his birth on the 28th November 1869.
She signed with an X.
George Southwell their father, was working as a Wood Dealer at the time of Walters birth.
Walter was baptised on the 5th December 1869, at The parish church of St. Margaret of Antioch, East Wellow, Romsey, Hampshire.
Walter went on to marry, Ellen Moody and lived to a grand age of 81. He died on the 27th October 1951. 
Walter was laid to rest at, The parish church of St. Margaret of Antioch, East Wellow, Romsey, Hampshire.

Jumping forward to the year 1871, Queen Victoria was still on the throne, William Ewart Gladstone (Liberal) was Prime Minister, Britain, Russia, France, Austria, Turkey and Italy agree to abrogate the 1856 Treaty of Paris ending Black Sea neutrality, and the census in the United Kingdom, was taken, the first to record economic and mental status.
It was taken on the eve of Sunday 2nd April 1871, and shows, Alice residing at, the Angel Inn, Bell Street, Romsey, Hampshire, England with her maternal uncle William Reeves, her aunt, Georgina Reeves nee Cole and her cousins, Mary Ann, Frederick and Charles Reeves.
William was working as an Inn Keeper and Fly driver (A one horse lightweight carriage driver), Mary Ann, Frederick and Charles were scholars and 9 year old Alice was a domestic servant.

In the year 1872, at East Wellow, Alice’s sister, Kate Southwell, was born, on the 6th November 1872.
Kate was baptised at The parish church of St. Margaret of Antioch, East Wellow, Romsey, Hampshire, on the 29th December 1872.

She went on to marry, Ralph Henry Moody, son of Henry Moody and Ann Bessant. (My hubbies 3rd Great grand Parents.)
Kate died on the 9th July 1964, aged 91. What fantastic innings.

Around the year 1880, when Alice was 19 years old, she met a man called Mr. Teddy Taylor, from Windsor, fall in love and got engaged. 
Their banns of marriage were called at, The parish church of St. Margaret of Antioch, East Wellow, on the 9th January 1881, but at some point after, Alice made the wise decision to call of the marriage, because of Teddy’s behaviour towards her. He was a heavy drinker and assaulted her.
Sarah came up trumps and found their marriage banns. Grand job Sar.

On Sunday the 3rd of April, 1881, the Census was held which shows, Alice residing at number 2, Shootash Cottage, East Wellow, Romsey, Hampshire, England, with her parents, George and Sarah and her siblings, George, Walter and Kate.
Her father George was working as a, dealer and small farmer of 3 acres. Sarah was a farmers wife, George junior a Agricultural Labourer and Walter and Kate were scholars.

Over the next few year, Alice moved to Southampton to live and work at the the “Anchor and Hope” Beer House, in Foundry lane, Millbrook, Southampton, Hampshire.(now the coop, we believe)

Mr. Charles Burden, was licensee at the time. He was a widow and father of 10.

It looks as if Charles had ran the Anchor and Hope” Beer House, in Foundry lane, Millbrook, Southampton, since 1884. While researching his life we came across a few newspapers articles from his time as landlord.

Alice and Charles, fall in love and we believe they had a son, whom they named Ernest, out of wedlock. Ernest was born on the 12th March 1885, at 30 Cook Street, Southampton, Hampshire, England.
Harriet Bennett, occupier of 30 Cook Street, Southampton, Hampshire, was present and registered his birth on the 20th April 1885.
He was registered in the name Southwell and no father was named on his birth certificate.
Alice was working as a Domestic Cook at the time of his birth. She didn’t name Herbert’s father on his birth certificate.
Was Charles House, his Father?

It’s a possibility that Harriet Cook, helped single mothers, have their baby’s and looked after them until they were ready to go at it alone.
Sarah tracked down Harriet, in the 1881 Census, which leads us to believe that this was true as she had a nurse maid living with her and her husband.
We have come across this situation during our family history research and believe this is the most likely scenario especially as Alice did not return home to her parents, to have her baby boy, Herbert Southwell.

Herbert used Charles surname, House, throughout his life, instead of Southwell which his birth was registered in, which makes us think that Charles was possibly his father. Herbert went on to marry a lady called, Olive Mary Richardson, daughter of Own Richardson and Eliza Potton. They had a son called Eric, who spent a lot of his life in Germany. It is believed that he was a spy. On Eric’s return to England, his father Herbert, brought him a farm in Plymouth, Devon. Unfortunately at present little is know about Eric’s life. Research continues.
However, Herbert lived a long life and died on the 11th June 1965, at The Royal Victoria Hospital, Boscombe, Bournemouth, Hampshire, England.

Anyway let’s get back to  Alice shall we, 

Alice married widow, Charles House, a Dealer, son of Aaron House and Mary House nee Giffee, on the 15th of May 1887, at Christ Church, The Parish Church Of Freemantle, Freemantle, Southampton, Hampshire, England. 
Alice gave her residence as, Southampton and Charles as, Freemantle.
Their witnesses were George and Emma Hedges. 
They named their fathers as, Aaron House, deceased And George Southwell, a Farmer.

Alice and Charles were soon expecting and on the 9th April 1889, in the South Stoneham district of Southampton, Hampshire, England, Alice gave birth to a baby girl, whom they named, Winifred Mary House.
Winifred went on to marry John Hill, Son of Frederick and Mary Hill. They moved to Dorset and lived out the rest of their days there.
Winifred died on the 29th April 1965, at 2, Burnett Avenue, Christchurch.

Unfortunately for Alice, married life didn’t last long as on Friday the 12th of April 1899, at Foundry lane, Freemantle, Millbrook, Southampton, Hampshire,  England, Charles House, Cattle Dealer, died.
His cause of death was Epilepsy and Pneumonia.
Charles’s son, Robert Henry House, was present and registered his death on Monday the 15th of April, 1889.

On Friday the 3rd of May 1889, Charles’s probate was granted in Winchester.

It reads, 

House Charles. Personal Estate £244 15s. 7d. 3 May. Administration of the personal estate of Charles House late of the “Anchor and Hope” Inn Fremantle in the parish of Millbrook in the County of Southampton Innkeeper and Cattle Dealer who died 12 April 1889 at the “Anchor and Hope” was granted at Winchester to Alice House of the “Anchor and Hope” Widow the Relict.

I wonder how Alice felt about now being in charge of the Anchor and Hope Inn, while coming to terms with the loss of her husband, as well as, adjusting to life as a widower and bringing up her two bairns alone.
That is rather a lot to contend with, especially at the young age of 28.
I sincerely feel that Alice, was a rather special soul and I feel great pride in knowing that her dna runs through the blood of my own children and hubby.
Alice’s life hasn’t been the easiest so far, but with one chapter of Alice’s life over and new beginnings to follow, I will leave you for a short while. 

There is so much more to come, so please pop back real soon to find out what happened next to the remarkable lady we are beginning to know, Alice House nee Southwell

I for one can not wait to share the next chapter of her life with you all.


Sarah and I have brought and paid for all certificates,
Please do not download or use them without my permission. 
All you have to do is ask.
Thank you.

5 thoughts on “The Life Of Alice Southwell, 1861-1915, Part 1.

  1. Great research girls !!!
    I love reading all about your family history, and how they lived in those long ago days , well done x c


  2. Really enjoyed reading the first part of Alice’s life. She was my 1st cousin 3xremoved. She has suddenly come to life thanks to your hard work. Looking forward to the next part. Well done girls x


  3. Pingback: The Life Of Alice Southwell 1861-1889 – Part 2. | Intwined

  4. Pingback: The Life Of Alice Southwell, 1861 – 1915, Part 3 – The Final Chapter. | Intwined

  5. Pingback: Chapter Six – July 2022 | Intwined

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