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Deaths in the Workhouse

ral91

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#1
Hi, I have someone who died in the Bethnal Green Workhouse, but cannot find any records regarding this. Are there any workhouse records available?
 

p.risboy

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#3

ral91

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#6
have a look at this web site.

www.institutions.org.uk/workhouses/.../bethnal_green_workhouse.htm

if you have a date of death the death cert might help establish which institution they were living at.

I think otherwise you will have to visit the records office. the address is on this web site


dochines
Hi,

I'm afraid that is the problem. I have tried to find the Death Cert to order form GRO but cannot, so was hoping that I could narrow it down in the Workhouse records. I know the year, but not the date.

Ryan
 

dochines

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#7
At the risk of stating the obvious have you looked in the following year for the GRO record. It is perfectly possible to die in say November or December and not be registered until the 1st or even 2nd quarter of the following year! If there was an inquest into the death that can delay things as well .

The deaths in workhouses particularly in the first half of the 19C may not all have been reliably registered just to add to you difficulty.

If you have found an entry for him in a census it might indicate which of the 5 workhouses used by Bethnal Green to look in

Dochines
 

ral91

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#8
Hi, I've checked all of the surrounding years, and thus far nothing. When I look at his Census entries, he is at the Bethnal Green Workhouse in the Ecclesiastical Parish of St John, in the borough of Tower Hamlets. Does that reveal which workhouse he as in?

He spent the vast majority of his life in there, from as early as 1846 up until his death in 1880. His wife's death certificate is illegible but I can work out that in the informant box the words "Workhouse Bethnal Green".
 

dochines

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#9
Hi,
I still seem to be able to log ito the site I posted earlier. There were 5 different workhouse sites used by Bethnal Green.

Waterloo Rd
Well St Work house actually in Hackney
Bethnal Green infirmary Cambridge heath rd
Leytonstone house Childrens Home.
Hare Rd

The parish of St John only covered the area of Cambridge Heath Rd So I imagine it is the infirmary you are looking for,

After serving as a workhouse it became a proper hospital in 1908 with at peak over 600 beds,
I knew it in the early 1970s and used to take patients there . By then it was running down. It closed and was demolished about 1990. There are pictures on the web

The fact your relative was there so long suggests infirmity so he was most likely there.

The records will either be at the Metropolitan Archives , 40 Northampton Rd London EC1R 0HR or the Cooporation of London PO Box 270 Guildhall EC2 2EJ

It would be worth contacting them to see if they can confirm they hold the record you need.

I aldso knew the Leytonstone house unit. By the 1970 it was unit for the subnormal although some residents were there just because they had been abandoned. I remember one lady being discharged from there having been an inpatient for 68 years. Two members of staff had married and after their first child decided to adopt her as a grandmother . A lovely gesture.

Hope that helps a bit more to track you man down

dochines
 

ral91

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#10
Hi,
I still seem to be able to log ito the site I posted earlier. There were 5 different workhouse sites used by Bethnal Green.

Waterloo Rd
Well St Work house actually in Hackney
Bethnal Green infirmary Cambridge heath rd
Leytonstone house Childrens Home.
Hare Rd

The parish of St John only covered the area of Cambridge Heath Rd So I imagine it is the infirmary you are looking for,

After serving as a workhouse it became a proper hospital in 1908 with at peak over 600 beds,
I knew it in the early 1970s and used to take patients there . By then it was running down. It closed and was demolished about 1990. There are pictures on the web

The fact your relative was there so long suggests infirmity so he was most likely there.

The records will either be at the Metropolitan Archives , 40 Northampton Rd London EC1R 0HR or the Cooporation of London PO Box 270 Guildhall EC2 2EJ

It would be worth contacting them to see if they can confirm they hold the record you need.

I aldso knew the Leytonstone house unit. By the 1970 it was unit for the subnormal although some residents were there just because they had been abandoned. I remember one lady being discharged from there having been an inpatient for 68 years. Two members of staff had married and after their first child decided to adopt her as a grandmother . A lovely gesture.

Hope that helps a bit more to track you man down

dochines
Hi dochrines,

I've been searching for info on the Cambridge Heath Rd Infirmary/Workhouse and cannot find anything of much weight or significance. As you said, considering his location and what is mentioned on the Censuses, I think the one my ancestor was in was the Cambridge Heath Rd. You mentioned that the length of time he was in there suggests an infirmary. What exactly was the difference - if you know - between an infirmary and a workhouse? I know an infirmary was pretty much a hospital, but it is listed as a workhouse on records I do have for him from Censuses to his wife's death cert. Do you know anything about this particular workhouse/infirmary as you said you knew it.

Thanks for any help
Ryan
 

duckweed

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#11
If you went into the infirmary it was due to chronic illness not just poverty. There was no other alternative if you weren't wealthy you went to the infirmary attached to the Workhouse that was free. You didn't have to be destitute,
 

dochines

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#12
Hi, Ryan,

I have had another think about this and wonder if your ancestor was in the Waterloo rd Workhouse, long since demolished but was near Bonnar Rd That is also in the Ecclesiastical parish of St John which I had not realised. the residents are listed clearly in the 1881 census. there are several references and other family history references on the Web.

The records for the Bethnal Green hospital are all held at the archives of the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel

You ask about the diference between a hospital and an infirmary. the short answer is not a lot! Some places notably Bristol still refer to their hospital as an Infirmary as in Bristol Royal Infirmary.

All work houses segregated their residents into men , women and children, even breaking families up. They were then devided again; the able bodied who could work, the idle who would not work, and the infirm who could not work. Each resident was allocated a category on admission by the Medical Officer. The infirm were therefore cared for in the infirmary. In a way it was a bit like a sick bay in a boarding school or other institution. It housed the elderly infirm as well as the mentally ill and physically ill with conditions like TB and bronchitis

The modern term hospital is I think well understood!

Which census did you find your relative in ? It may be possible to use the refernce to find the location of the workhouse

I have a variety of search subscriptions so can try a look up if you PM me the details

Best wishes

dochines
 

ral91

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#13
Hi dochines,

Thanks for that, I have found him in the 1851, '61, '71.

From what I can gain from them they say

Parish/Township: Bethnal Green
Ecclesiastical Parish: St John
Borough: Tower Hamlets

He's listed as an 'inmate' and the institution is referred to as a Workhouse and not an infirmary, although I'm not sure if they just used 'Workhouse' as a reference for infirmaries.

This is the link to what I have

http://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/...3d-84329427z0q26pgz0q3d32768z0q26pgPLz0q3dpid

Ryan
 

dochines

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#14
Hi Ryan

I am still trying to mke sense of this for you. I strongly suspect he was in the Waterloo Rd Workhouse . I found him listed and looked back in the images in FMP to see the staff and in 1851 and 1861 the master was Theobald Meyrick. Try googling him he featured in a few newsworthy incidents. There was also a ballad written about life in the Bethnal Green workhouse look up the "Out of silence Choir" who have a cd "songs for the workhouse" Track no 14 relates to Bethnal Green workhouse.

St Matthews church is nearby. I note his date of birth is wrong in the 1851 census I think the original is aged 50 not 56 which makes date about 1801. This matches nearly with 59 in the 1861 census . These are so often innacurate

However the baptism record for St Matthews has a William Bridges baptised 17 Oct 1798 son of John and Sarah Bridges john being a weaver. it also give a birth of sept 27th (presumably 1798)

The silk weaving trade had been brought to the Spitalfields , Brick lane and the Bethnal Green area when the Hugenots came to that area in the 1750s as refugees. your William was also a silk weaver in 1861 census.

There is a public members tree on A...y owned by Graham Petley called the Slater family Old which seem to have your William in it as all the dates fit .

If this is your tree and you know all about it fine..... If not do have a look. It suggests his wife was a Charlotte who died in 1846 just before his admission to the workhouse.

it lists his children as Louisa born 27 2 1830, Wlliam 1833, William 1835, Sarah 1837, and Joseph 1839

William died in 1880 which is why he is not in the 1881 census. I was able to do a search for a William Bridges born and died in Bethnal Green

There is one that fits nicely 1880 4q Bethnal Green 1c 137. Is this the same one you have or is this another possibility

Hope there is something new here. Just to confirm this was a workhouse but with an infirmary wing, there were resident nurses with the master and a visiting Medical officer

best wishes

dochines
 

ral91

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#15
Hi dochines,

Everything you said makes sense, and a lot of info you have correlates to what I have. I similarly found the baptism in 1798 and was largely convinced by the occupation of John. William's wife, Charlotte, was also listed as a Silk Weaver I think as were an awful lot of their neighbours in the 1841 Census, which leads me to believe that they are descended from Huguenots; although, of course, nothing's definitive.

The children you listed are the same as I have, as is the death. I shall have a look at that public tree - sounds interesting. I also have Charlotte's death cert from 1846. Although I'm a bit perplexed by that as the informant is largely illegible but I can work out the words "Workhouse Bethnal Green".

You've been of immeasurable help - I can't thank you enough. :)

Ryan
 

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