Your great grandfather Thomas Brooks was my great great grandfather! He was born in Tattershall, Lincolnshire in 1866 before moving to Warrington. My Grandad, Bert Stanway, told me the names of his mother (Milly Brooks), her parents (Thomas & Frances Brooks) and her siblings (Ernest, Fred & Elsie Brooks), and I have since found more information. I found them all in the 1901 census, living on Forshaw Street, Warrington, and I found Thomas, Frances & Ernest Brooks in the 1891 census too, confirming Thomas Brooks had been born around 1866 in Tattershall. I also found Frances, her four Brooks children, her last husband, William Appleby and his daughter, living on Amelia Street, Warrington in the 1911 census, a few years ago, but like you, I got stuck.
I had known that Thomas Brooks must have died after the 1901 census and before 1909, when Frances Brooks married William Henry Appleby, but had been unable to find any record of a Thomas Brooks, having been born around 1866, dying in Warrington in this period, however. I then searched the BMD index for deaths in Lincolnshire, but the only death record between 1901 and 1911 for a Thomas Brooks who had been born within a few years of 1866 was for a “Thomas Carter Brooks” who died in the Sleaford district, Lincolnshire, aged 41 years in the 3rd quarter of 1907.
Your Grandfather must have been Fred Brooks (1892-1964), my great great uncle. My great grandmother was his sister Milly (1896-1970). According to my grandparents, her father, Thomas Brooks, became seriously ill and left Warrington to recover where his family lived in Lincolnshire, where he later died.
My grandparents told me my great grandmother Milly was sent to Lincolnshire on a train by herself to be with him when she was only seven, though they could have got confused and meant 1907. She stayed with an uncle Benjamin Brooks and his wife who lived in Billinghay. After her father died, they wanted to adopt her as they had no children of their own, but her mother, Frances, insisted she return to Warrington. My grandparents tell me they still have the letters all about this, between our distant uncle Benjamin Brooks and our ancestor Frances somewhere in their loft. They think Frances and her other children never went to Lincolnshire for Thomas Brooks' burial.
With this information, I then searched for a Benjamin Brooks living in Billinghay around this time on the census records, and found a Benjamin Brooks living in Billinghay with his wife Mary Jane and no children in both the 1901 and 1911 censuses. Both censuses said he had been born around 1873/4 in North Kyme, Lincolnshire, and so I searched for him again, with this information, and found him living with his parents in North Kyme in 1881. However, there was no mention of a brother “Thomas Brooks” on this census. The census did say, however, that Benjamin did have a brother “Carter Brooks”, who had been born 14 years earlier (ie. c.1866) in Tattershall, Lincolnshire.
Keeping in mind the only matching death record I found was for “Thomas Carter Brooks”, I then began to suspect that Carter Brooks and Thomas Brooks were one and the same. This was confirmed as there was no record of anyone named Carter Brooks after the 1881 census; From then on, Carter seems to disappear, at least until the death index entry for “Thomas Carter Brooks”. (Also, Billinghay is in the Sleaford registration district).
Carter Brooks was baptised in Tattershall in 1866, son of Thomas and Elizabeth Brooks. His father Thomas Brooks was born in Ewerby, Lincolnshire, around 1836 and died in the Sleaford registration district in the 1st quarter of 1913, aged 76 years. In 1860, he married Elizabeth Brown, in the Gainsborough district. She had been born in c.1834, Fillingham, Lincolnshire. After her marriage, she moved from the Gainsborough district to the Sleaford district, where she died in the 2nd quarter of 1911, aged 76 years.
According to the 1911 census, Thomas & Elizabeth Brooks had 9 children, 5 of whom were still living in 1911. The 7 that I have found are listed as follows:
1. Jane Ann Elizabeth (1861-1889),
2. John Thomas (1864-1917),
3. Carter “Thomas” (1866-1907),
4. Willie (b.1868 ),
5. Annie (1871-1890),
6. Benjamin (1873-1944), and
7. George (b.1876).
Thomas/Carter Brooks’ widow Frances married William Henry Appleby, a widower from Stoke in 1909, Warrington. According to the 1911 census they lived at 8 Amelia Street, Warrington with her children, Ernest (1889-1970), Fred (1892-1964), Milly (1896-1970) & Elsie Brooks (1898-1957), as well as his daughter Sarah Ann Appleby (1899-1972). Frances Appleby died, aged 77 years, in 1939, Warrington. On census records, her birthplace is given as Aston, Birmingham, Warwickshire, but I don’t know her maiden name or much else about her.
Uncle Ernie had one daughter Marian (1919-2012) who my grandparents saw quite a lot of. Her widower, Jim Taylor, died last year, aged 92. She never had any children; that’s why I assume uncle Fred Brooks was your grandfather. Elsie Brooks was a spinster who I think lived with my great grandparents, Milly & Richard Thomas Stanway (1898-1967). They had two sons, Eric Thomas Stanway who died as a baby in 1925, and Herbert Stanway (my Grandad), born 7th April 1937. He had 4 children and 7 grandchildren.
I hope you find this information helpful.
Have a good weekend!
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