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Sarah Smith. 1850s resident of Arnolds Yard, Oxford.


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My 4xgreat grandmother was Sarah Smith nee Inkpen born in 1796 in Oxford City. She wed James Smith in 1819 and lived just off Queen Street, Oxford.

Her glazier husband James Smith died in 1849 (typical as he said he was not born in Oxford in 1841) of Broadwaters Court, Queen Street, Oxford.

The 1851 census lists Sarah as a 54 year old widow, a Laundress living at Arnolds Yard, Queen Street, Oxford. I think 3 or 4 of her children were with her. One was a tinplate apprentice and another was a servant and the youngest one was a labourer in a cocoa factory.

I luckily found a burial of a Sarah Smith at St Peter Le Bailey Oxford in November 1858 aged 62 of Arnolds Yard, Oxford so have sent for the cert. I wonder what she died of. Probably a lung or heart complaint.

In 1891 census (years after her death) each tenement in Arnolds Yard (renamed Victoria Place) had 3 rooms. So in the 1850s I think Sarah Smith lived in a 3 room tenement. A bedroom to herself, a living room and a room for her children probably. If she was there in 1851 and 1858 she obviously lived there throughout the time inbetween which is good.


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