Email from Steve May 2015. "This is an edited essay relating to the Gibbs, I suspect it could be further edited, but haven't attempted to edit it too much for fear of leaving out relevant information".

Editor's (Rob Forsyth) notes:
Some changes have been made to the layout of Steve's excellently researched article in order to adapt it for browsing on screen. Any comments in (italics) are mine.

William Gibbs (1808-86)

Our story now moves onto William Gibbs, b.1808, who lived in Deddington, as seen in the Census records, but William's birth is not shown in the Deddington Parish registers in 1808, and here lies a mystery as there now appears several options. To explain this, William may have been baptised outside of Deddington.

Jill Adams has kindly researched William Gibbs's parentage. There is a record of a William Gibbs b.1808, and baptised in 1810, at the Independant Church of Banbury, which is close by. The parents are William and Mary. It would appear that parents waited before baptising, so that they could be done in groups in a single day. There appear to be other siblings, but research shows these are relevant only to Banbury, and only William relates to Deddington, so we can assume two sets parents named William and Mary.

There is a marriage of a William Gibbs and Mary Pargeter in Banbury in 1804, but there is also a William Gibbs marrying a Mary Gibbard (b.1784) in 21/12/1802 in Deddington, and it is this marriage which appears the most likely. Mary died of Dropsey in 1849 aged 65, as the death is witnessed by Hannah Gibbard, so we can be fairly sure this is our Mary Gibbs (née Gibbard). William (b.1778) died of Dropsey in 1854 aged 76, again the death is witnessed by Hannah Gibbard.

Jill Adams has found that in the Deddington Parish registers there is a baptism of a William Gibbs baptised 7/3/1779, which ties up with the birth of William Gibbs b.1778. His parents would be Samuel Gibbs and Ann, although no marriage for them can be found at present. William would have siblings James b.1781, and Samuel b.1783.

Jill also found Mary Gibbard was the daughter of William Gibbard and Jane Stephenson who married in Deddington in 1772, and that William Gibbs and Mary Gibbard had Samuel b.1805 d.1836, Jane baptised in 1808, probably born 1807. William previously mentioned b.1808, James and John baptised 1812, although John died1815 aged 2, Elizabeth b.1816, Ann b.1820.

William Gibbs, b.1808, married Charlotte Eaglestone b.1810, in Steeple Barton, Oxford, in 1830. With various spellings of the name Eaglestone research is difficult, but interesting.

Her father was William Eaglestone, b.1771, in Oxfordshire living in Steeple Barton in 1841, aged 70, employed as a mason, with his 2nd wife Kitty (Catherine) 70, Emma Chilton 17, and Elizabeth Brooks 22. Charlottes mother and Williams first wife was Anne.

In 1851, though they are living with the Mathews family, (their daughter Mary had married into the Mathews family.) as mother and father in law, (listed as paupers, both 80,) to Stephen Mathews 62, an agricultural labourer, and Mary 48. They have children Eleanor ,14 , Elizabeth, 12, and Edwin, 5. William died in Woodstock in December, 1851. Kitty died in Woostock in March, 1854.

In 1841, William Gibbs and Charlotte live in Pilcock (sic) Street, Deddington, and their family is made up of William, 33, a Blacksmith. Charlotte, 31. Thomas, 9. Charles, 7. Joshua, 5. Ellen, 3. Elizabeth, 1. William though went on to be employed at 'Masons Axletree Factory' in New Street, (see history of Royal British Legion's building) one of 28 employee's. There was also a George Gibbs b.1816, and John Gibbs b.1821(Barford in Warwickshire, according to the census), who also worked at the factory.

In the diaries of William C Risley, the Vicar of Deddington, mentions that on October 3, 1845 'I buried another child of W Gibbs at the factory which had died of fever' This was Samuel and was the third to die in three months. The Gibbs subsequently went on to have more children and another Samuel was named and survived. There are other Gibbs families close by, one family though is listed as not of England so possibly Scottish. They are Thomas and Sarah Gibbs whose children are also in their neighbour's house. And in the other direction a few houses away is Ben Gibbs a labourer with his wife Jan.

In the 1847 Directory, William Gibbs is listed as a Baker, and this is explained by the fact that when housewives made bread, the dough would be taken to the Blacksmith to be cooked.

In 1851 The Gibbs family are now living in Earls Lane. The family are as follows: William, 43, journeyman axle maker. This is  'Masons' Axletree factory, who made axles for the royal coaches. Charlotte is 41. Charles, 17, is a journeyman stone mason. Joshua, 15, is an errand boy. Elizabeth,11, is a scholar. Ann, 6, is a Scholar. Ellen, 4, is a Scholar. Samuel,1.

In 1861, the family are back in Philcot Street. The family is: William, 53. viceman at factory. Charlotte,51.Ellen Jane, 14. Samuel, 11. Caleb, 9. Frederick William, 5. Born 23rd December 1855. Elizabeth will have married in 1865 Edward Harris, they go on to have a son Fred (who will later marry the daughter of Frederick William Gibbs, Ethel Ellen in 1905).

There is another family of Gibbs back down the road being that of another William Gibbs (of Barford St.John), his occupation is that of vermin killer, and his wife Elizabeth (Pritchard), and their son in law Edward Peckover. In the other direction can be found Joseph Gibbs, 32, an apprenticed labourer, and his wife Mary,28, Henrietta, 4, Annie, 3, Emily, 1.

In 1871, the address that is given in the Census return, for our Gibbs family, is 'Bottom of Town, Deddington.' Further on in the Census it states South End, then later Philcot Street, so they appear to have moved, but not very far. William is now 63, and he is still working in the axle making factory, he appears to be a Viceman.

Charlotte is 60, Anne, 26. Samuel, 21, shoe maker. Frederick William, 15. Ellen J Elliot, 24, is visiting with her son Ernest, 2. Ellen is their married daughter. Ellen married in 1868 to Benjamin Henry Elliot, in Woodstock. Further down the road in Oxford Road, Elizabeth Gibbs has a visitor Cathy Gibbs, 5.

In 1881, the name of the Street has changed to Philcock Street. William 73, is indicated as an axlemakers vice man (Late), so would presume he has retired. Charlotte is 70. They live next door to a lodging house run by John and Elizabeth Fetcher, both 28. Along with three sons it holds sixteen lodgers. John is also an agricultural labourer as are some of the lodgers.

1886  William died on 6 September, aged 76, a Viceman in the Axletree Factory*, death by Paraplegia, with Joshua Gibbs in attendance, registered 17th September, 1886.

* Between 1820 and 1895 the present day Royal British Legion Club building was an axle-tree factory belonging to the local firm of Mason & Hard

In 1891 Charlotte, 80, is living without William in Oxford Rd, and has a visitor, Rose A Cowley, 11 years old, who is the daughter of the family next door. Charlotte is living as a lodger in the house of Martha Satchel, who is a tayloress and staymaker. There do not appear to be any other Gibbs living in the area. Charlotte died in Woodstock aged 82 in 1892.

The children of William Gibbs b.1808

Thomas 1832-1910
Charles 1834-1916
Joshua 1835-1916
Ellen Jane
Elizabeth 1839-1894?
Ann 1844-1919

Ellen Jane*



Caleb 1852-1939
Frederick William 1856-1934