The Barfoot family … and a brickwall!

The Barfoot family ... and a brickwall!

My dad’s mother was originally a Barfoot… a name that is fairly common in the SE of England although in various forms that have changed over time (Barefoot, Barefot, Bearfoot etc) and his grandfather, my Great Grandfather, Edward Barfoot, is standing in the centre. My G Grandmother, in the dark dress on the front row, was originally Elizabeth Taylor.

Edward, from a young age, worked in a papermill in Maidstone and then started to work in a local saw mill (probably connected) and possibly was even working at the time of this photograph. He was born in Maidstone on 21 March 1857, although I’ve not been able to find his baptism just yet… maybe he wasn’t baptised! He was from a family who worked on the barges in the town, carrying goods up the Medway to London, and his decision to work in the saw mill broke the family tradition. However, his father had died when he was just eleven and I would think that his mother was pleased to have some money coming in as soon as possible, little caring whether he worked on the barges or not!

Edward married a Louisa Caroline Cook when he was 18 in 1875 but he was widowed the following year. His period of mourning was fairly brief, however, and he married Elizabeth the year after that in 1877 on 14 July in Maidstone. Fanny and Daniel Lambert were the witnesses, Edward’s sister and brother-in-law. Elizabeth gave birth to their first living child in 1879 and they went on to have 8 more with my grandmother, Lilian Lavinia the youngest and last to arrive in 1898. In this photo their fifth child John, known as Jack is standing on the left with his future wife, Jane Clara Boorman, seated in front of him. The other members of the group I’m not sure about… yet!

Elizabeth, Edward’s wife, was born in Royal Tunbridge Wells in 1859, born in the Workhouse there to an Emma Taylor. However, what is strange is that Elizabeth can’t be found on any census records and there is no trace of her until her marriage and from then on she’s there in all the census returns.

She’s my ‘brickwall’ at this stage of the family history… so many questions arise, though…. was Emma her mother’s real name? Was Elizabeth known by another name? If so, what name? Where was she? If I believe the information on her birth certificate and she was born on 19th May… what happened to her from then up to 1877?

One day, I’m sure, the answer will be revealed… but until then she’s someone without a past for me!

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5 Responses to The Barfoot family … and a brickwall!

  1. John Barfoot says:

    The big gentleman in the middle is my g grandfather also, to his right with pipe is my grandfather. So clearly we are related but article says nothing of you ……who are you, I assume maybe my cousin ie a daughter of Jack ( John) and Anne who lived at Bearsted

  2. charts2012 says:

    Hi John! My grandmother, Lavinia, isn’t on this photo, I’m afraid… but Jack was one of her older brothers. G Grandfather Edward is in the middle standing and Elizabeth (nee Taylor) our G Grandmother is seated in the middle. I’ve sent you an email… hope it reaches you!

    • John Barfoot says:

      Hi , Regret no E mail .
      I am trying to think what our relationship is , is it 2nd cousin ?
      You are not who I thought but then I did not know that my Grandfather had any siblings, he died when I was quite young. It is the G Grandfather that gives the clue , I have only a photo of him alone . I think it was possibly taken at the family home in Wheeler Street , Maidstone

  3. charts2012 says:

    I’m guessing that you are John H. Barfoot born to Frederick William Barfoot and Grace (nee Bolton)…. and we are second cousins.

    Actually there are a few mysteries with the family and I’m hoping that you might know something about Elizabeth Taylor’s history or, indeed, something about the relationship between Elizabeth Agnes Barfoot (one of Jack’s sisters) and her husband Llewellyn Israel Prickett… they are so hard to find out anything about. In all Edward and Elizabeth had nine children!

    If you have a family member or close friend with an email address there is much I can tell you about your family history…so let me know in a message and I can send you details. I won’t publish the details of any email address so that the person doesn’t get bombarded with spam. You may even know members of the extended family if you live in the Maidstone area.

    Cheerio for now… Gill

    • John Barfoot says:

      Hi Gill,
      Sorry I did not realise you had replied on this , so apologies for delay .You are spot on as to where I fit in , in the grand scheme of things .
      Alas you know much of my family that I was unaware of .While I know something of my mothers kin, my dad (Fred ) did not have a lot to do with his extended family, He was also enstranged from his brother Jack (John ) for too many years . I am vaguely aware he used to chat to a lady called Crittenden when they saw each other in town . I always assumed she was a relation of some sort .
      My E mail is

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