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I'm not sure being a traveller is actually an occupation, but as my ancestor classed himself as a traveller on one of his children's baptism records maybe it is.

I long heard rumours that I had traveller roots and upon further research it would appear I did.

I wonder if my ancestors The Stanley's and The Johnson's were from well known extensive travelling families. In most censuses they classed themselves as basket makers or hawkers ( apparently these are common occupations of travellers)

If anyone could give me any info on traveller communities in Victorian England particularly around the London, Buckinghamshire areas or just how to research them or any info at all it would be greatly appreciated

Many Thanks!
I too come from Romany roots but through Ireland my grandma came over here in 1889,she did`t marry into a Romany family infact she married a srgt in The Essex Battalion,she lived a good life and had 7 children,her 7th being my mum Kaitlin
Kaitlin also did not marry into a Romany family instead she married my dad (a cockney)
I am their 7th child and I did marry into a travelling family ,some 35 years ago,my father in law was the last rag and bone man around here

There is a lot of help out there with your travelling family research
I have helped to research for over 30 years
post names -dates- areas or feel free to private message me
Take care
Romany Rose
Be careful of the terminology.
The modern day Traveller or Gypsy is likely to be termed Egyptian in census and earlier records.
The term traveller in census and early records is more likely to refer to a commercial traveller or company rep.
Hi Romany Rose. Any help you could give me would be great.

The main family branch are the Stanley's
- I have Peter Stanley who was born c.1797 possibly around Croydon and he married Rebecca who was born in 1796. They moved around the Putney area.

There children were Sarah (1817) Diverus (1820-1888 ) Lucy (1823) Olive Mary Stanley (1825-1908 ) Peter (1828 ) Pamella/Penelope (1830-1920) John (1830)

Olive is my relative and she married Daniel Johnson (1826-1901) I'm not sure if the Johnson's were travellers but as in most censuses they were either basket makers or hawkers.

It's the baptism of Lucy Stanley in 1823 that Peter Stanley classes himself as a traveller.

If you need any more info I will give you as much as I can.
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I have found that the Peter Stanley born 1797 Croydon was married to Rebecca born circa 1790 at Putney this was Peter`s 2nd marriage his 1st was to Sarah born 1797 Surrey
so Peter and Sarah had 2 children 1/Sarah Stanley born Putney St Mary 1817
2/Diverus Stanley born Putney St Mary 1815,baptized 1820 and died in the Croydon area 1888.

Peter Stanley`s (2nd) to Rebecca thy had the following children
1/Lucy Stanley born 10th October 1823 at Oakham in Surrey
2/Olive Maria Stanley born 1825
3/Peter Stanley born Shinfield Berkshire 1828
4/Pamela Penelope Stanley born Shinfield Berkshire 1830,baptized 1831 died Surrey 1920
4/John Stanley born Berkshire 1830

Romany Rose
with Regards to DIVERUS STANLEY son of Peter Stanley
I have found the following:)
Diverus Stanley born 1815 ,baptized 1820 died 1888 he married at Putney to Rebecca Wellings born Putney 1820
they had the following children
1/Sophia Stanley born Ore.Hastings 1840 ,baptized 1842 she died at Battle,Sussex 1940
2/Frances Stanley born Kingston-upon-Thames 26/11/1842
3/Moses Stanley born 1 Lawrence Yard Chelsea on the 16/4/1844
Diverus married again in 1847 also at Putney to Naomi born 1827 at High Wycombe,baptized 1829(so we can assume that Rebecca had died sometime between 1844-1847)

Romany Rose
Children of
Diverus Stanley and Naomi
1/Divern Stanley born Croydon 1846 he married Louisa Ann born 1828 and they had 6 children(will post if you require the names and dates of children)
2/John Stanley born Hadlow in Kent 1847
3/George Stanley born 16/11/1848 at Kingston-upon -Thames his death occurred in December 1901 and is recorded has Greater London he married a Cinderella Cooper(This is a well known Gypsy family)
4/Sarha(note the spelling)Stanley born Croydon 30/11/1851
5/Rebbekka(spelling)Stanley born 1854 at Clapham and she died 1907 Croydon
6/John Divour Stanley born 1857 at Croydon he died Camberwell 1903 he married Annie O Donovan she wa sborn 1861,together they had 2 children(will post if you require details)
7/William Stanley born Norwood 1860:)

Romany Rose

Thought that I would include for you the following

George Stanley(son of Diverus and Naomi) married Cinderella Cooper
on their marriage cert it states that George`s occupation was a basket maker and the occupation of Cinderella was a flower seller they married at Battersea in 1875-note Cinderella was born Battersea 1850
together they had the following children
1/Fred Stanley born Mitcham Surrey 1870
2/Daylia(note the spelling) Stanley born Hadlow Kent in 1873
3/Sarah Stanley born Norwood Surrey 1876
4/Rebecca Stanley born Mitcham Surrey 1880
5/George Stanley born Kingston-Surrey 1881
6/Edward Stanley born Woodford Green Essex 1886
it is worth noting that the Cinderella`s family the Coopers were well thought of for their hop picking and would return yearly to the Surrey /Kent areas


Romany Rose
Romany Rose thank you so much for your help.
From the info you've uncovered do you think I was right in guessing they were traveller families? Let me just digest all the info you've uncovered and if it's ok ask any questions I may have.

Thank you so much again.
Romany, do you have any knowledge of Cromwell or Bowes travellers or hawkers in Scotland of Irish extraction? I have some who keep changing their names in different census.

I have an Edward Cromwell in Newcastle born around 1806, a hatter by trade and his wife Jane. Sons William and Edward all born Ireland. These Cromwells seem to visit Kirk Yetholm a lot but more as visitors not residents, and also have relations in the Lanarkshire area. But they were all born in Ireland. I was more wondering if you had come across the name Cromwell in Romany circles. It doesn't seem to figure as a surname in any of the books I have on the Kirk Yetholm ones.

thanks for your assistance.

Hi Romany Rose.

I've been going through the information you've got for me. Do you have any information on Peter Stanley's first wife? and Diverus Stanley's first wife? The christening arecords I have for both Sarah and Diverus say Rebecca as mother.

Also I was wondering if you could recommend any books I could read or websites that may give me a little more insight into the traveller communities and the lives my ancestors may have lived. I am guessing the Coopers were quite well known within the travelling community, do think it possible that for my ancestors to have married into a family like that, that they too may have been a well respected travelling family?

Thanks for all your help
The R&TFHS is very good and have a website easily found on google.

Romany and Traveller Family History Society is the full name. I have been buying some old journals which give you a lot of info and arrive incredibly quickly. They sell an index for a nominal fee which has the names and areas which are in the journals.

I have had a real time of it with the Stanley family.....I'm glad I appear to onto the right track.
Diverus Stanley did have 3 children with Rebecca Wellings and I have 2 of the birth certificates showing this (Moses & Sophia). My family comes down through Sophia Stanley. I have her down a little different to you guys. I'm happy to be proven wrong. I just want to get this right :)
I believe that Sophia married a Fredrick Goldsmith and lived most of her life in the Croydon area and died in Croydon in 1888. There is another Sophia from Brighton born around the same time who pops up and people seem to mix the 2 up. There's a Sophia Stanley and a Sophia Gillette. Sophia Gillette is not our lady, I've spent many an hour proving that she's not. I think Sophia Gillette may be the one who died in Battle in 1940. I could be wrong though!

Now I did find an old news paper article a few days ago, and I will try to find it again, and it showed Naomi, Diverus second wife as being called Naomi King. I have yet to find anything else on her or Rebecca.

From the previous posts by the wonderful Romany Rose, it's mentioned the marriage between Rebecca & Diverus in Putney. Are you able to tell me where this info comes from? I am desperate to find out more about the Wellings and have drawn a complete blank

I hope some of this helps

V x
hlouisew you're very welcome to nose around at my tree on Ancestry. I have loads on there regarding the Stanley's. My tree is the Brown Tree and my user name is vickyb31. I hope it helps :)
Hi Vicky!

Wow just reading the article, it's brilliant. I don't know why but of all my family tree branches the Stanley's have really captured my imagination and I'm desperate to know more about them. I find them fascinating and am really proud of my traveller heritage. My family link comes through Mary Olive Stanley, Diverus' sister. It took me ages to find something to link her to the other Stanley's. I'll have a look at your tree and I'll look forward to comparing notes!