PART SEVENTEEN

 

The Maldon Essex & Kent Line – 1550 to 1930

 

Updated July 2016

 

This is the family line of Clara Elizabeth Collett (Ref. 17O5)

Some of the members of this family used the single T spelling of the surname

 

The majority of the material used in the July 2015 update of this family line was generously

provided by George English and by Elliot Dawson of Day’s Bay, Eastbourne in New Zealand

 

 

17D1

RICHARD COLLETT was born in either Essex or Kent around 1500 and he died in 1557

 

 

 

17E1

HENRY COLLETT

Date of birth unknown

 

17E2

John Collett

Died in 1588 at Maldon

 

 

 

 

17E1

HENRY COLLETT was an ironmonger and glover in London and from 1562 was an apprentice to John Carre of Essex.  He served as a burgess on the Maldon Town Council and in 1567 he married Barbara Gilson who died in 1571.  Henry died in 1588.

 

 

 

17F1

HENRY COLLETT

Born in 1570

 

 

 

 

17F1

HENRY COLLETT was born in 1570 and was an ironmonger like his father.  He later became a freeman and cutler of Canterbury.  He married (1) Ann Turner a widow and (2) Agnes who died in 1620.  He then married (3) Margaret Sharp on 19th November 1620 with whom he had a daughter Mary Collett, while his two sons were a product of his first marriage.  At the time of his third marriage the church record at St Paul’s In Canterbury stated that Henry Collett Of St Andrew’s in Canterbury was a cutler and a widower aged about 50, and that his bride Margaret was from St Margaret’s in Canterbury, a maiden of about 43, and at her own govt.  Lynsted, where one of his children was born, lies midway between Sittingbourne and Faversham.  Henry Collett died at Canterbury in 1651.

 

 

 

17G1

Thomas Collett

Date of birth unknown

 

17G2

HENRY COLLETT

Born in 1596 at Lynsted, Kent

 

17G3

William Collett

Born circa 1600

 

The following is the only child of Henry Collett by his third wife Margaret Sharp:

 

17G4

Mary Collett

Date of birth unknown

 

 

 

 

17G1

Thomas Collett, the son of Henry Collett and Ann Turner, may well have married Joan Adams since, upon the marriage of their son Samuel, consent was given by his mother who was named as Joan Adams alias Collet.  With the knowledge that his son Samuel was a blacksmith at Faversham, where he raised his family, it seems likely that the Thomas Collett who was buried at Faversham on 12th February 1688 was his very elderly father.

 

 

 

17H1

Anne Collett

Date of birth unknown

 

17H2

Samuel Collet

Born in 1616

 

 

 

 

17G2

HENRY COLLETT was the son of Henry Collett and was baptised at Lynsted in Kent on 22nd August 1596.  He was 21 when he married Christian Granger of Eltham in Kent on 1st December 1617 at St Margaret’s Church in Canterbury.  It was also recorded at Canterbury that Henry Collett the younger was an apprentice cutler to his father Henry Collett.

 

 

 

17H3

HENRY COLLETT

Born in 1618 at Canterbury

 

17H4

John Collett

Born in 1620 at Canterbury

 

17H5

Isaac Collett

Born in 1623 at Canterbury

 

17H6

Daniel Collett

Born in 1624 at Canterbury

 

17H7

Mary Collett

Born in 1625 at Canterbury

 

17H8

Margaret Collett

Born in 1626 at Canterbury

 

17H9

Anne Collett

Born in 1628 at Canterbury

 

 

 

 

17G3

William Collett was born around 1600 or during the few years thereafter.  He was very likely the son of Henry Collet, although by the time he became a married man for the second time, both of his parents had died, and is was his older brother Henry Collett (above) who was the bondsman.  It was on 4th August 1628 at Canterbury Cathedral that blacksmith and widower William Collet of Faversham married Marian Nutbrowne of the Precincts in Canterbury, who was a maiden of 30 years, while Henry Collet junior of Canterbury, a cutler, was named as the bondsman.   William’s children were still very young when he died at Faversham, where he was buried on 1st March 1639.

 

 

 

17H10

Robert Collet

Born in 1629 at Faversham, Kent

 

17H11

Anne Collet

Born in 1632 at Faversham, Kent

 

17H12

William Collet

Born in 1634 at Faversham, Kent

 

 

 

 

17G4

Mary Collett was the daughter of Henry Collett by his third wife Margaret Sharp, and she later married Kendrick Lake

 

 

 

 

17H2

Samuel Collett was born around 1616 and possibly at Faversham, the son of Thomas Collet and Joan Adams.  It is possible that he was married twice, the first time to Parnell Woodcocke, the daughter of Mary Woodcocke of Ashford in Kent on 16th November 1640 when he was 24 and she was 25 or 26.  The record of their marriage at the church in the Kent village of Selling included the facts that Samuel was a blacksmith from Faversham who had the consent of his mother Joan Adams, while Peter Ellis, a shoemaker, testified that Parnell was the daughter of the widow Mary Woodcocke.  The bondsman for the wedding was Edward Pennyall of Selling, who was also a blacksmith and very likely the employer of Samuel Collet.  However, it seems that shortly after they were married Samuel’s wife may have died, allowing him to marry for a second time, as the parents of all his known children born at Faversham were recorded as Samuel and Anne Collet.  Anne Collet died at Faversham where she was buried on 10th May 1674.

 

 

 

17I1

Mary Collet

Born in 1646 at Faversham, Kent

 

17I2

William Collet

Born in 1647 at Faversham, Kent

 

17I3

Elizabeth Collet

Born in 1649 at Faversham, Kent

 

17I4

Robert Collet

Born in 1651 at Faversham, Kent

 

17I5

Samuel Collet

Born in 1654 at Faversham, Kent

 

 

 

 

17H3

HENRY COLLETT was born at Canterbury during 1618, where he was baptised as Henrie Collet at St Margaret’s Church on 29th November 1618, the son of Henrie Collet.  He later married Elizabeth Harrison, the daughter of Lancelot Harrison the Rector of Orlestone in Kent.  Henry Collett of Stepney was initially an ironmonger and followed in his father’s and his grandfather’s footsteps as freeman and cutler of Canterbury.  He became citizen and white baker of London and later died at Stepney in 1676.

 

 

 

17I6

JOHN COLLETT

Born in 1642

 

17I7

Lancelot Collett

Born in 1652

 

17I8

Mary Collett

Born in 1656

 

 

 

 

17H4

John Collett was born at Canterbury where he was baptised as John Collet, the son of Henrye Collet on 4th March 1620.

 

 

 

 

17H5

Isaac Collett was born at Canterbury and baptised at St Andrew’s Church on 25th May 1623, the second son of Henry Collett.

 

 

 

 

17H6

Daniel Collett was born at Canterbury and was baptised there at St Andrew’s Church on 29th August 1624, the son of Henry Collett.

 

 

 

 

17H7

Mary Collett was born at Canterbury where she was baptised at St Andrew’s Church on 23rd January 1625, the eldest daughter of Henry Collett.

 

 

 

 

17H8

Margaret Collett was born at Canterbury and it was there at St Andrew’s Church that she was baptised on 13th August 1626, the daughter of Henry Collett.

 

 

 

 

17H9

Anne Collett was born at Canterbury and was baptised at St Andrew’s Church on 27th February 1628, the youngest of the known children of Henry Collett.

 

 

 

 

17H10

Robert Collet was born at Faversham in Kent, where he was baptised on 3rd May 1629 the eldest child of William and Marian Collet.

 

 

 

 

17H11

Anne Collet was born at Faversham and was baptised there on 23rd September 1632, the daughter of Willyam and Maryan Collet.

 

 

 

 

17H12

William Collet was born at Faversham and it was there also that he was baptised on 14th September 1634, the son of William and Maryan Collet.

 

 

 

 

17I1

Mary Collet was born at Faversham, where she was baptised as Marie Collett on 18th August 1646, the daughter of Samuel and A Collet.  A Mary Collet was buried at Faversham on 4th December 1688, and she may have been the spinster Mary Collet.

 

 

 

 

17I2

William Collet was born at Faversham, where he was baptised on 23rd March 1647, the son of Samuel and Anne Collet.  It was also at Faversham that a William Collet died and was buried on 9th January 1687.

 

 

 

 

17I3

Elizabeth Collet was born at Faversham and was baptised there on 21st May 1649, the daughter of Samuel and Anne Collet.

 

 

 

 

17I4

Robert Collet was born at Faversham and it was there that he was baptised on 10th November 1651, the son of Samuel and Anne Collet.  It was also at Faversham that a Robert Collet died and was buried on 16th June 1698.

 

 

 

 

17I5

Samuel Collet was born at Faversham where he was baptised on 16th July 1654, the son of Samuel and Ann Collet.  It was also at Faversham that three Samuel Collets died and were buried there, one of which was very likely this Samuel. The earliest was buried on 2nd December 1677, the next on 20th November 1678, and the third on 11th May 1725.  The record of a later Samuel being buried there took place on 2nd December 1746.

 

 

 

 

17I6

JOHN COLLETT was born in London during 1642, the son of Henry Collett and Elizabeth Harrison.  He later married Mary Holloway the daughter of Nicholas Holloway, a cloth merchant and citizen of London.  John Collett was a glover of St Leonard’s in Shoreditch, and was also a wealthy dyer and was able to give his children a good education.  He was a member of the Petty France Church and had been one of the original trustees of the Particular Baptist Fund.  John Collett died in 1698 and at the time of the birth of his son Joseph his occupation was that of a glover.  His will was also proved in 1698 and he and Mary lived at Hoxton Square in Shoreditch, while one source believes that John was descended from the Collets of Wendover.

 

 

 

17J1

John Collett

Infant death

 

17J2

Sarah Collett

Infant death

 

17J3

Joseph Collett

Born in 1673

 

17J4

SAMUEL COLLETT

Born in 1682

 

17J5

John Collett

Died in 1720

 

17J6

Mary Collett

Date of birth unknown

 

 

 

 

17I7

Lancelot Collett was born in 1652, the son of Henry Collett and Elizabeth Harrison.  He later married Elizabeth Blanchard of St Dunstan’s in East London, but sadly was not married very long, when Lancelot Collett of Stepney died in 1682.

 

 

 

17J7

Henry Collett

Date of birth unknown

 

 

 

 

17I8

Mary Collett was born during 1656, the daughter of Henry Collett and Elizabeth Harrison, and she later married James Pope in 1678.

 

 

 

 

17J3

Joseph Collett was born in 1673, the son of glover John Collett and Mary Holloway.  He was around twenty-one years of age when he married Mary Ross in 1694 with whom he had five children before Mary died.  Following the death of his wife in 1710, Joseph accepted an appointment by the East India Company as Deputy Governor at Fort York in Sumatra.  He sailed on the ship ‘Jane’ in 1711 which fell into French hands on its way to Rio de Janeiro.  He did however secure his release and that of the ship and its cargo and crew by means of a ransom bill payable from London.  This portrait of Joseph Collett was painted on enamel around 1721 by Christian Friederich Zincke, four years before he died.

http://www.portraitminiatures.com/images/brits/bp-Zincke%20Joseph%20Collet%20c1720.jpg

 

 

 

The following year (1712) he arrived at Madras on 24th May, at Bantal on 23rd July and eventually at York Fort at Bencoolen in Sumatra on 1st September 1712.  It was there that he was appointed Governor of Bencoolen, a position that he held until 1717, during which time he was instrumental in restoring order and arranged for a new fort to be built.  Towards the end of 1712 Joseph wrote to Sir Gilbert Heathcote, the Lord Mayor of London, one of many letters that he wrote.  The book “The Letter Books of Joseph Collett” written by Clara Collett (Ref. 17O5) was published in 1933.

 

 

 

Two years later in 1714 Joseph moved to Fort Marlborough on the west coast of Sumatra and, after a further two years, he was based at Fort St George in Madras where he was eventually he was appointed the President of Madras on 8th January 1717, a title he held for three years.  During his tenure as Governor of Bencoolen he is believed to have made the infamous remark on the Rajas of Indonesia by saying “I treat them as a man treats his wife, very complaisant in trifles, but immovable in matters of importance”.

 

 

 

Immediately after his assumption of the Presidential chair for Madras, Joseph was entrusted with the responsibility of tackling an irksome situation.  The last days of Harrison's Presidency had seen some intense communal clashes between the Komatis and the Chetties.  A settlement had been reached, but the terms of the settlement were not adhered to and the Chetties deserted the British and moved out of Madras in large numbers.  When Joseph took over as President he was faced with the task of curbing the exodus.  Accordingly he ordered that the belongings of the deserted Chetties be confiscated.  At the same time he issued a proclamation which forbade individuals from the left-hand castes to worship in temples belonging to those of the right-hand castes and vice versa.

 

 

 

On 24th July 1717 the issue of a firman (an official order) in the name of the British East India Company was celebrated with an elaborate ceremony.  Under the terms of the firman, the Presidency of Madras occupied Divy Island off the coast of Masulipatnam.  Meanwhile, the British once again sought out the Nawab of Carnatic, demanding that he hand over the village of Tiruvottiyur under his occupation to the british, in accordance with the imperial firman issued by the Mughal Emporer Farrukh Siyar.  The Nawab refused to yield, stating that he had no faith in the words of the President as he had not seen the provisions of the firman.

 

 

 

However, a compromise was eventually agreed upon and the President wrote back informing the Nawab that he intended to take over Tiruvottiyur by 23rd September 1717.  In return, he promised to gift the Nawab 500 pagodas and a piece of fine scarlet cloth, with 200 pagodas being offered to his son-in-law Dakhna Roy.  On 23rd September, as per the plan, Joseph travelled to Tiruvottiyur and took possession of the place but six days later the Nawab's representative at Poonamallee blockaded the road to Fort St George advising the British that the Nawab would not accept anything less than 1,000 pagodas in return for Tiruvottiyur.

 

 

 

Fresh threats soon arose to the British occupation of Divy Island.  Struck by financial crisis, Joseph Collett decided to rent five villages obtained by the firman at the rate of 1,200 pagodas per annum each for 12 years.  On 18th October 18 when the demands had not been met, an enraged Dayaram, the Head Renter of the territory who was subordinate to the Nawab of Carnatic, marched to Tiruvottiyur with an army of 250 horse and 1000 foot, where removed the British flag and took possession of the village.  A subsequent consultation was held according to which the members of the Board pressed the President to remove Dayaram and his troops by force

 

 

 

On the 19th of October, Lieutenant John Roach marched into Tiruvottiyur at the head of 150 men and drove away Dayaram and his men.  Dayaram's men resisted but Roach inflicted a crushing defeat upon them and pursued them in their flight to the plains surrounding Madras.  A fresh body of 500 men were sent by the Nawab to attack the Company's troops from the north, but Lieutenant Roach and his men were saved by the arrival of timely reinforcements from Madras.  Lieutenant Fullerton arrived on the scene with 100 men and the combined forces defeated Dayaram and pursued the fleeing troops up to Sattangodu. Their mission accomplished, the Company troops made a quick retreat to Fort St George

 

 

 

When Lieutenant Roach arrived at Madras, the Muslim inhabitants of the town rose in rebellion against the British.  After a battle lasting six hours, the forces of the Carnatic and supporters of the Nawab were flushed out from the city and its environs.  This was an overwhelming victory for the heavily outnumbered forces of the British East India Company against a much superior power.  Lieutenant Roach, who had commanded the operations in Fort St David, as well as Tiruvottiyur, was rewarded with increase of pay.

 

 

 

The Nawab proposed peace to the President and accordingly, on the 15th of December 1718, peace was concluded between the Nawab of the Carnatic and the British East India Company.  Joseph Collett agreed to pay 2,000 pagodas to the Nawab and 1,000 pagodas to Dakhna Roy in return for the outlying villages.  Since the conclusion of peace, cordial relations existed between the Nawab of Carnatic and the British East India Company.  When Dakhna Roy, the Prime Minister to the Nawab visited Madras in February 1719 he was given a grand reception and was allotted a fine house in Black Town for his stay.

 

 

 

On 27th May 1717 a proposal for the inauguration of two Charity schools for slaves of the English inhabitants of Madras, one in Black Town and another in White Town, was approved by Joseph Collett.  Two years after in April 1719, Joseph Collett issued a proclamation authorising severe measures against Portuguese Roman Catholics of St. Thome marrying Protestants from Madras.  On 25th May 1719, Joseph recruited one George Foriano to translate Portuguese documents into English and vice versa making him the first translator in the Company's service at Madras.  On 9th July 1719 the Honourable Court of Directors voted to reduce the garrison at Fort St George to 360 and the garrison at Fort St David to 340.

 

 

 

In November that same year, Joseph Collett issued a proclamation changing tax laws on the registration of land and slaves.  In the very same month, registration of all houses and gardens in Black Town was made compulsory by another proclamation.  However, when the extremely poor complained to the President regarding their inability to pay such high rates for registration, Joseph issued an amendment by which all houses valued at less than 50 pagodas were exempted from taxation.  Joseph Collett then founded a new colony for weavers and painters of cloth near Tiruvottiyur, and that village was named Collettpettah in his honour.

 

 

 

According to a report submitted by Joseph Collett to the Directors of the British East India Company on 28th December 1719, the hamlet had a population of 489, inhabiting 105 houses.  Two months earlier In October 1719, Joseph proposed to resign and return to England expressing his inability to bear the harsh climate of the city during the previous month.  He proposed the name of Francis Hastings of Fort St David as his successor, but the Directors chose Nathaniel Elwick instead. Accordingly, Joseph Collett resigned and almost immediately set out for England, to be replaced by the aforesaid Nathaniel Elwick

 

 

 

Over those years he made a substantial fortune through his trading and business dealings and was able to make allowances for his daughters.  The girls were educated and supported in England all this time by Joseph’s sister-in-law Mary Collett, the wife of Samuel Collett (below) his brother.

 

 

 

Joseph’s son John Collett sailed out of England in 1714 to join his father, but tragically died two years later.  Four years after his loss Joseph returned to England on 8th January 1720 and settled in the town of Hertford with his daughters Henrietta and Mary, where he rebuilt Hertford Castle – a former royal residence, to where he retired in 1721.  It was also slightly earlier than that when Mary Collett nee Curtis, the wife of Joseph’s brother Samuel (below) suffered a premature death leaving her husband with four young children.  Of those four children, the two daughters remained with their father, while the two older children, John and Joseph Collett were adopted by Joseph.  For the next five years the brothers lived with their uncle until Joseph Collett died at Hertford Castle on 13th June 1725, following which he was buried at Bunhill Fields Cemetery in the London Borough of Islington, where his monument still stands today.  Just a few years before he died the Hertford parish overseers approached him as the local landowner, to seek a plot of land on which to erect a workhouse, and it was during 1723 that the new Union Workhouse was built in Ware on a street later named Collett Road in his honour.

 

 

 

He was referred to in the book ‘The English Baptists’ by Underwood as follows.  Joseph Collett was a close friend of Nathaniel Hodges with whom he went to school.  He inherited his father’s dyeworks and he and his family moved to the Artillery Lane Church where Hodges had become pastor.  Due to the wars around that time the dyeworks business collapsed and his creditors had to accept seven shillings and two pence in the pound.  He became Governor of Madras, a post that enabled him to earn a considerable fortune.  By the time he was 47 he had made enough money to give each of his daughters five thousand pounds as a wedding gift, and to purchase a country estate, and to stand for election to the British Parliament.  He retired in 1721 and, back in London, he transferred his membership to the Barbican Church.  He died four years later leaving fifty pounds each to Joseph Burroughs and Isaac Kimber.  The self-penned inscription on his tomb at Bunhill Fields reveals his semi-Arian sympathies in the phrase, ‘The gift of the only and only supreme God the Father, by the ministration of His Son Jesus Christ’.

 

 

 

The clay statue (above) of Joseph Collett, by the Chinese artist Chinqua and created in 1716, stands in a collection at the National Portrait Gallery in London.  The artist of the enamel miniature of Joseph Collett, Christian Friederich Zincke was certainly the most important and prolific enamel miniaturist working in England during the first half of the 18th century.  Born in Dresden around 1683, he was trained as a goldsmith before moving to London in 1706 to study with Charles Boit.  His own pupils included Jeremiah Meyer, William Prewett and Jean Rouquet.  Zincke's distinguished clientele included George II, Frederick Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Marlborough and the Duke of Portland.  Today his work is represented in virtually every major museum collection around the world.

 

 

 

17K1

John Collett

Born in 1696 in London

 

17K2

Elizabeth Collett

Born in 1699 in London

 

17K3

Mary Collett

Born in 1702 in London

 

17K4

Ann Collett

Born in 1703 in London

 

17K5

Henrietta Collett

Born in 1705 in London

 

 

 

 

17J4

SAMUEL COLLETT was born in 1682, the son of John and Mary Collett.  He was a skinner by trade who married Mary Curtis.  Mary Collett nee Curtis died in 1720, while her husband Samuel Collett had lived to be over 90 years of age, when he died in Newbury during 1773.  Samuel and Mary had four children, listed below, before the premature death of their mother, following which Samuel, who was known as The Patriarch and a citizen of London, married for a second time but without giving birth to any further children.  It is understood that the two eldest children of Samuel and Mary Collett, that is their sons John and Joseph, were adopted by Samuel’s older brother Joseph (above) after their mother passed away.

 

 

 

17K6

John Collett

Born in 1708 at Newbury

 

17K7

Joseph Collett

Born in 1709 in London

 

17K8

Mary Collett

Born in 1715 in London

 

17K9

Samuel Collett

Born in 1717 in London

 

 

 

 

17J5

John Collett was the son of John and Mary Collett who was a merchant and he died in Persia sometime between 1712 and 1720.

 

 

 

 

17J6

Mary Collett was the youngest known child of John Collett and Mary Holloway and she later married Doctor John Quincy to become Mary Quincy.  Dr John Quincy was the author of several works including a medical dictionary that was published in 1719, and more significantly he dedicated his Dispensatory of 1718 to Mary’s older brother Joseph Collett (above).  Their marriage produced two daughters, Mary Quincy (born 21st February 1706) and Ann Quincy (born 29th July 1709).

 

 

 

 

17J7

Henry Collett was the son of Lancelot Collett and Elizabeth Blanchard, whose father died when he was still a child in 1682.  Henry later married Elinor Howard the widow of Mr R Howard.  Henry was of the Bank of England and a dyer who died in 1738.  Elinor Collett nee Howard had died six years earlier in 1732.

 

 

 

 

17K1

John Collett was born in London during 1696 and was fourteen years old when he mother died, after which john and his sisters (below) sailed to Sumatra with their father to live at Fort Marlborough.  Two years later in 1714 John moved to Madras with his father Joseph who had then been appointed President of Fort St George.  Tragically John died at Bencoolen in Sumatra during 1716 when he was around 18 years of age, following which his father and his sisters returned to England after a further four years.  During his short life John wrote many letters to his older sister Elizabeth back in England, who he referred to as Eliza.  Those letters feature in a book compiled by authoress Clara Elizabeth Collett (Ref. 17O5).

 

 

 

 

17K2

Elizabeth Collett was born in London on 9th April 1699, the second child and eldest daughter of Joseph Collett and his wife Mary Ross who died in 1710.  She later married George Sawbridge Littell in 1718 with whom she had two daughters, Rebecca (who never married and died in 1779) and Elizabeth who went on to marry Sir Robert Clarke from Freckenham in Suffolk, with whom she had a son John Clarke (1763-1782).  George Sawbridge Littell, sometimes written as Little, was a citizen and an iron merchant of London and of Stoke in Suffolk, who was born around 1690, the son of John Eden Littell of Hackney.  Elizabeth Littel nee Collett died in 1766.

 

 

 

 

17K3

Mary Collett was born in London on 23rd January 1702.  Following the premature death of her mother in 1710, Mary and her siblings were looked after by their father in Sumatra, where her older brother John (above) died when he was eighteen and four years later Mary and her sister Henrietta (above) accompanied their father Joseph back to England.  Mary later married Richard Warren of Marsden in Hertfordshire in 1728 and the married produced two sons, Arthur Warren and Collett Warren.  Like her mother Mary, Mary Warren nee Collett also suffered a premature death when she died on 28th December 1733, perhaps even in childbirth, following which she was buried at Tewin Church near Welwyn (Garden City) where there is a memorial tablet.

 

 

 

 

17K4

Ann Collett was the fourth children of Joseph Collett and Mary Ross and was born in London during November 1703, just seven years before her mother died during 1710.  She later married the much older Edward Leeds from Croxton near St Neots during 1719, the son of Edward Leeds and Elizabeth Woodley, who was a member of the Inner Temple and at sergeant at law.  Ann Leeds nee Collett died in 1757, while Edward died in London on 5th December 1758, having been born in March 1692.  The couple had four children: Anne Leeds who married John Barnardiston and had a son Nathaniel; Henrietta Leeds who married John Howard who had a son John; Edward Leeds who died in 1803; and Joseph Leeds whose own son became Sir George Leeds.

 

 

 

 

17K5

Henrietta Collett was born in London on 6th February 1705, the last child of Joseph and Mary Collett.  Following the death of her mother in 1710 Henrietta was living with her father in Sumatra and returned to England with him and her youngest sister Mary (below) in January 1720.  She later married William Blackford of Holyncote Court at Selworthy in Somerset, just west of Minehead, on 17th August 1726, the eldest son of William Blackford and Elizabeth Dyke of Pixton.  Their daughter Henrietta, who was born on 13th September 1727, died on 16th December 1733 at Selworthy aged six years.  The date of birth of the child coincided with the death of Henrietta her mother and a tablet in the Selworthy Church records her passing as 13th September 1727.  The same tablet also lists the passing of her husband William Blackford on 20th March 1730, together with their daughter Henrietta who died on 16th December 1733.  The tablet also refers to Henrietta’s father as Joseph Collett, late of Hertford Castle.

 

 

 

 

17K6

John Collett was born at Newbury on 24th June 1708, although shortly after his parents moved into London where his three known siblings (below) were born.  He became a doctor and was recorded as Dr John Collet, M D, Leiden University 1731, Extra-Licentiate of the College of Physicians, and General Practitioner of Newbury.  He married Sophia Brice on 23rd January 1733 at Speen in Buckinghamshire, after which they lived at Leyden Hall and Newbury in Berkshire.  They had four children, all of whom tragically died as infants.  The death of John Collett was recorded at Newbury on 9th May 1780.

 

 

 

17L1

Sophia Collett

Died at 4 months at Newbury

 

17L2

Ann Collett

Died at 6 weeks at Newbury

 

17L3

Mary Collett

Died at 2 months at Newbury

 

17L4

John Collett

Died at 15 months at Newbury

 

 

 

 

17K7

Joseph Collett was born in London on 27th September 1709 and was baptised at St Giles in Cripplegate on 30th September 1709, when the church record confirmed that he was the son of Samuel and Mary Collet.  During his life he married three times, his wives being (1) Dorothy Turner, (2) Sarah Morson, who died in 1778, and (3) Ann Moreton, whom he married at Cheshunt on 15th June 1779.  Ann Moreton was considerably younger than Joseph, having been born in 1739, who died at Newbury in 1828.  Joseph Collett never had any children from his three marriages and died in 1785 and his Will dated 17th November 1785 includes the following passage.  I give the said house and garden, etc, to my niece Sarah Barker, and on her decease to her son Collet Barker.”

 

 

 

 

17K8

Mary Collett was born in London on 20th May 1715, where she was baptised at St Giles Cripplegate on 31st May 1715, the daughter of Samuel and Mary Collett.  It was on 20th June 1732 when Mary was seventeen that she married Richard Neave who died in London during 1763, followed by his wife Mary Neave nee Collett who died during March quarter of 1778.  The marriage produced no children for Mary and Richard.

 

 

 

 

17K9

Samuel Collett was born in London during 1717, and was baptised at St Giles in Cripplegate on 29th April 1717, the son of Samuel Collett and his wife Mary Curtis.  He later married Sarah Lasswell at Wallingford in Oxfordshire on 11th August 1752.  Sarah was born in 1719 and was the daughter of Joseph Lasswell and Jane Goodeve and she died in 1781.  Samuel was a merchant of Leadenhall Street in the City of London and had died seven years earlier at Newbury during 1774.  Their son Samuel was baptised on 22nd October 1754 at the Independent Chapel in Aston Tirrold, Berkshire (today in Oxfordshire), and he died in 1755.

 

 

 

17L5

Samuel Collet

Born in 1754; died 1755 at Aston Tirrold

 

17L6

Sarah Collet

Born in 1755 at Aston Tirrold

 

17L7

Sophia Collet

Born in 1757 at Aston Tirrold

 

 

 

 

17L6

Sarah Collett was born on 11th August 1755, the daughter of Samuel Collett and Sarah Lasswell, who was baptised on 2nd September 1755 at the Independent Chapel in Aston Tirrold.  She was very young when she married William Barker on 19th March 1771.  He was the son of Doctor John Barker and his wife Mary Bakewell and was born in 1748.  Sarah gave birth to thirteen children, of which only three survived beyond infancy.  The youngest child was sixteen years old when Sarah Barker nee Collett died at Lee, Lewisham in Kent on 10th May 1808, and William Barker survived for a further twenty-four years, when he died at Greenwich, London on 10th November 1832.  It was their daughter Elizabeth Barker who in 1810 married her cousin John Dobson, the son of Sarah’s sister Sophia (below), the union giving rise to the Dobsons of New Zealand and Australia, some of whom later took up the Collett surname.

 

 

 

17M1

John Collett Barker

Born on 06.10.1772; died 29.09.1775

 

17M2

Mary Barker

Born on 09.11.1773; died 02.01.1774

 

17M3

William Barker

Born on 27.07.1775; died 03.10.1778

 

17M4

Mary (Maria) Barker

Born on 17.09.1777; died June 1780

 

17M5

Samuel Barker

Born in 1778; died 1780

 

17M6

John Barker

Born in January 1781; died 22.03.1782

 

17M7

Jemima Barker

Born in 1781 at Hackney

 

17M8

Sarah Barker

Born in June 1782; died 12.07.1785

 

17M9

Collet Barker

Born in 1784

 

17M10

Elizabeth Barker

Born in 1787

 

17M11

William Barker, born Hackney, London

Born on 26.11.1789; died Sept 1791

 

17M12

Mary Barker

Born in 1792

 

17M13

Rebekah Barker, born Newtown, Hants.

Born on 12.04.1792; died 29.01.1798

 

 

 

 

17L7

Sophia Collett was born during March 1757, another daughter of Samuel and Sarah Collett.  It was at Cheshunt in Hertfordshire on 18th June 1774 where she married Charles Dobson of Stow-on-the-Wold in Gloucestershire and was still only thirty when she died on 14th July 1787 at St Georges, Hanover Square in London, leaving a husband and five surviving children, although it is now confirmed that Sophia actually gave birth to a total of eight children before her untimely death.  Genealogist Clara Elizabeth Collett (Ref. 17O5) described Charles Dobson as an ‘entirely irresponsible man’ who deserted his children when his wife died.  Charles Dobson, who was baptised at Long Horsley in Northumberland on 23rd November 1742, died during 1801 and was the son of George Dobson of Northumberland and the brother of George Dobson (1748-1818) of Quy Hall Farm in Cambridgeshire.

 

 

 

17M14

Sophia Dobson

Born in 1775 at Stow-on-the-Wold

 

17M15

Charles Collett Dobson

Born in 1776 at Stow-on-the-Wold

 

17M16

John Dobson

Born in 1778 at St Mary Axe, London

 

17M17

George Dobson

Born in 1779; died 27.09.1779

 

17M18

Ann Dobson

Born in 1780 at St Mary Axe, London

 

17M19

Henry Dobson

Born in 1781; died 20.03.1782

 

17M20

Emily Dobson

Born in 1783; died 24.06.1783

 

17M21

Edward Dobson

Born in 1784 at Cornhill St Peter, London

 

 

 

 

17M9

Collet Barker was born at Hackney on 31st December 1784, the eldest of the three surviving children of Sarah Collett and William Barker.  He became Captain Collett Barker and was murdered by aborigines on 30th April 1831 at Encounter Bay in South Australia, where Barker Mountain (Mt Barker) was named after him, plus another in Western Australia.  A memorial tablet can be found in the Church of St James in Sydney.  He completed journals which have since been published as ‘Commandant of Solitude’ - the journals of Captain Collet Barker, 1828-1831.  Many years later, during one of The Charles Darwin Lectures, the topic was "Who was Collet Barker?"  Professor John Mulvaney subsequently presented a lecture “In Search of Collet Barker of Raffles Bay”.  That lecture put flesh on the bare bones which history, at least history up to that time, has left us.  From this we see an officer and an able administrator, a kind and sensitive soul, and arguably one of the very first white men to accept Aboriginal society for what it was, who made no attempt to 'civilise' or Westernise the Aborigines in the neighbourhood of Fort Wellington.

 

 

 

 

17M10

Elizabeth Barker was born at Hackney in London on 23rd August 1787, the daughter of Sarah Collett and William Barker.  She married her cousin John Dobson (Ref. 17M6) at Chelsea Old Church in the St Lukes district of London on 30th June 1810 with whom she had seven children.  John, who was born at St Mary Axe in London on 14th May 1778, died in London during August 1827 having contracted typhus fever in the course of his work as an estate manager.  Curiously it was after the death of their father, and during a period of fifteen months in 1841 and 1842, that records of the baptism or confirmation of the seven children have been discovered, although not all of the names correspond exactly with those listed below.

 

 

 

After fourteen years as a widow Elizabeth Dobson was 53 when she was living in the Islington area of London with just two of her children in June 1841.  Her son Collet Dobson was 28 and her daughter Sophia Dobson was 19.  By the time of the next census in 1851 it was just unmarried Sophia Dobson who was still living at Islington with her mother Elizabeth who was 63.  For a short period in their lives together Elizabeth and Sophia were recorded residing within the St Pancras and Regent’s Park district of the city in 1861, by which time Elizabeth was 73, but ten years later they were once again living in Islington at the time of the census in 1871 when Elizabeth was 83.

 

 

 

It was just under two years time that Elizabeth Dobson nee Barker died at 3 St John’s Grove in Upper Holloway on 22nd January 1873, her death recorded at Islington (Ref. 1b 194), and following which she was buried at Highgate on 27th January.  Her Will was proved on 20th February that year when she was described as a widow formerly of 5 Judd Place and afterwards of 11 Rothwell Street in Primrose Hill, but late of 3 St John’s Road (Grove), Upper Holloway.  Her eldest son Collet Dobson was named as the sole executor of her personal effects valued at under £300.

 

 

 

17N1

Mary Ellen Dobson

Born in 1811 at Old Jewry, London

 

17N2

Collet Dobson Collett

Born in 1813 at St Pancras, London

 

17N3

Charles Howard Dobson

Born in 1815 at St Pancras, London

 

17N4

Edward Dobson

Born in 1816 at St Pancras, London

 

17N5

Sophia Dobson Collett

Born in 1822 at St Pancras, London

 

17N6

Alfred Dobson

Born in 1824 at St Pancras, London

 

17N7

John Howard Dobson

Born in 1828 at St Pancras, London

 

 

 

 

17M12

Mary Barker was born at Newtown in Hampshire on 27th December 1792, the youngest surviving child of Sarah Collett and William Barker, who died at Bath on 23rd May 1886.

 

 

 

 

17M14

Sophia Dobson was born at Stow-on-the-Wold in Gloucestershire during 1775.  She married William Dyke of Woodborough, Wiltshire on 16th September 1800 and they had two daughters, Mary Dobson Dyke (see below) and Sophia Dobson Dyke (see below).  Tragically it was during the birth of their second daughter that Sophia died. 

 

 

 

Two years after losing his wife, widower William Dyke was married for a second time during 1806 while, according to a letter written on 4th June 1807, his two daughters were being cared for by Mrs Collett.  It was on 20th March 1806 at the Church of St Mary Magdalene in Taunton that he married Hannah Richards who had been born at Chichester.  In 1841 William Dyke was 74 and of independent means when he was living at Northgate Street in Devizes with his eldest daughter Mary.  It was the same situation in 1851, except that by then they were recorded at 16 Beaufort Buildings at Walcot near Bath in Somerset, when William was 82.  His death was recorded at Bath in 1853 when he was 84.

 

 

 

Their eldest daughter, Mary Dobson Dyke was born in 1802 and on the day of the census in 1841 was also residing at Northgate Street in Devizes with her father and in 1851 she was still living with her father but at 16 Beaufort Buildings in Walcot, when she was described under occupation as ‘funded property’.  It was there also that she was living in 1861 when she was described as a ‘fundholder’, while in 1871 and 1881 she was still recorded at Walcot.  For the latter she was described as receiving ‘income from dividends’.  The death of Mary Dobson Dyke was recorded at Bath (Ref. 5c/415) during 1887.  Daughter number two, Sophia Dobson Dyke was born in 1804, the year her mother died, although her birth was registered in 1805, and she died in 1829.  In the letter (above) written in 1807 Sophia was mentioned in the following way.  Sophy is the most lovely child I ever saw.  Fair and delicate, with soft straight silvery locks and the most soft and fascinating voice I ever heard.”

 

 

 

 

17M15

Charles Collett Dobson was also born at Stow-on-the-Wold, where he was baptised on 9th October 1776.  He never married and was a Mediterranean merchant who initially settled on the island of Malta, before venturing to South America where his business was unsuccessful.  However, it was at Copiapo in Chile where he died on 19th January 1827.

 

 

 

 

17M16

John Dobson was born at St Mary Axe in Whitechapel, London on 14th May 1778 and he died in 1827.  He was a parishioner of St Olave Jewry in London and it was on 30th June 1810 at Chelsea Old Church in London that he married his cousin Elizabeth Barker, and their family details are included under Elizabeth’s name (above).  Today the address 30 St Mary Axe applies to the ‘Gerkin’ building, the site of the Church of St Mary Axe.

 

 

 

 

17M18

Ann Dobson was born at St Mary Axe in Whitechapel on 9th November 1780, the daughter of Sophia Collett and Charles Dobson.  She never married and died at Worthing during the first quarter of 1836.

 

 

 

 

17M21

Edward Dobson was born at St Peter-upon-Cornhill in Whitechapel on 9th November 1784.  He was a solicitor in London and was living in the Islington area at the time of the census in 1851.  He died three years later on 5th January 1854 when he was living in the Clapton area of London, while his death recorded at Hackney (Ref 1b 209).

 

 

 

 

17N1

Mary Ellen Dobson was born at Old Jewry in London on 23rd April 1811, the eldest child of John Dobson and Elizabeth Barker.  She was baptised at St Olaves Church on 27th March 1842 and was confirmed at St Mary’s Church in Islington on 11th May 1842.  She was a sister of mercy and in 1881, aged 69 and born in Middlesex, she was the most elderly nun at All Saints Nunnery at 79 to 83 Margaret Street in St Marylebone, London.  However, it was at Bath where Sister Mary Ellen Dobson died on 26th November 1893, although an alternative source claims she passed away on 25th July 1898.

 

 

 

 

17N2

Collet Dobson Collett was born at St Pancras on 1st January 1813, the eldest son of first cousins Elizabeth Barker and John Dobson.  Although he was born as Collett Dobson, he later took the surname Collett name from his two grandmothers; Sarah Collett was the mother of Elizabeth Barker, and Sarah’s sister Sophia was the mother of John Dobson.  He was educated at Bruce Castle School in North London and then studied law at University College, London, where he took third prize in the subject in 1833.  Lacking the independent means that would have enabled him to study at the bar, Collet instead pursued musical studies at the Royal Academy of Music, and was a member of the choir at Drury Lane under William Macready, and then at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. In 1841 he was appointed director of the choir at South Place Chapel in Finsbury Square, where he worked alongside his sister Sophia Dobson Collett (below).  In addition to his singing, he also became an actor.

 

 

 

It was as Collet Dobson that he married (1) M McKenzie at St Pancras during 1838, when he was confirmed as the son of John Dobson and Elizabeth Barker.  It seems unlikely that there were any children arising from the marriage, since within two years Collet was a widower.  That fact was confirmed by the census in June 1841 when again as Collet Dobson he was back living with his mother and his youngest sister.  Elizabeth Dobson was 53, her son Collet Dobson was 28 and her daughter Sophia Dobson was 19.  No record of him as Collet Dobson or Collet Dobson Collett has been found anywhere in England at the time of the census in 1851 when he would have been around 38, so he may have been living in Scotland by then.

 

 

 

Previously it was written here that he was later married to the widow (2) Jane Marshall, the daughter of John Sloan who was born in Scotland in 1820 and the reason for making that assumption was that within the census of 1871 the couple had living with them her son Thomas Marshall who had been born in Scotland in 1847.  However, it is now established that on 3rd September 1854 Collet Dobson Collet, a teacher of singing from London, and Jane Sloan (formerly Jane Marshall) residing in High Street, Dunfermline, had been married following the reading of banns at the parish church in Dunfermline over the preceding three weeks.  The service was conducted by Robert Robertson Merchant of Bridge Street in Dunfermline before the witnesses who were Andrew Fleming, William Allister, and John Tod.  This new information received in August 2013 verifies that Jane entered into the marriage with her son Thomas Marshall, who was seven years old and from her previous marriage, who later became Thomas Marshall Collet.

 

 

 

By the time of the census in 1851 Jane Marshall was 30 when she was living at Kirkgate in Dunfermline with her son Thomas Marshall who was three years.  After they were married Jane and Collet, together with her son, travelled south to London where they were living in 1855 when the couple’s first child was born within the St Pancras area of London.  Over the following years four further children were added to the family at St Pancras and at Islington although, at the time of the birth of their fourth child, that of daughter Clara, the family was living at Sunny Bank in Hornsey Lane at Crouch End in London.  All of the children were given the Collet surname and it was also at Sunny Bank in Hornsey Lane that the family was living in 1873 when Elizabeth Dobson, Collet’s mother died. 

 

 

 

On 26th January 1861 the Reverend John Jenkyn sold one acre one rood and thirty perches of arable land to Collet Dobson Collet.  The land was described in the Middlesex Deeds Registry [Vol 2 No 610] at the London Metropolitan Archives as ‘abutting onto a proposed road’.  Just over two months later, according to the census return for 1861, Collet D Collet was 48 when he was residing within the Islington district of London with his wife and four of their children, plus Jane’s son Thomas.  Jane Collet was 40, their eldest daughter Caroline M Collet was five, son Wilfrid Collet was four and son Harold Collet was two, while the recent arrival, their daughter Clara E Collet was only six months old.  Living with the family was Thomas Marshall from Scotland who was 14.  In a further entry in the Middlesex Deeds Registry in 1864 [Vol 7 No 943] Collett Dobson Collet described himself as a laundryman.  In the Dictionary of National Biography [Page 623] Clara Elizabeth Collet (1860-1948) is described as the second daughter and fourth child of Collet Dobson Collet and his wife Jane, nee Sloane, who ran a laundry in north London.

 

 

 

Jane presented Collet with their last child during the following year and once again the entire family was still living at Islington in 1871.  On that occasion Collet D Collet was 58, Jane Collet was 50, Thomas M Collet was 23, Caroline M Collet was 15, Wilfrid Collet was 14, Harold Collet was 12, Clara E Collet was 10, and Edith S Collet was eight years old.  It was just less than two years later that the mother of Collet Dobson Collet passed away, when he was named as the sole executor of her Will and was described as Collet Dobson, her son, a laundryman of Sunnybank, Hornsey Lane, Middlesex.  He was also named as joint executor for the Will of spinster Mary Dyke of Bath who died in 1887, when his address was recorded as 7 Coleridge Road in Finsbury Park while it was actually 7 Coleridge Road in Crouch End.

 

 

 

In his role as a journalist Collett wrote articles for numerous publications including Musical World, and Vanity Fair.  He became the editor of the radical journal the Free Press and Diplomatic Review.  It may have been the journal that attracted the interest of Karl Marx with whom Collett became a great friend and, from around 1870 onwards, the families often visited each other.

 

 

 

Another entry in the Middlesex Deeds Registry [Vol 38 No 800] in 1879 reveals that a Samuel Baxter sold the land purchased by Collet Dobson Collet from John Jenkyn to the British Land Company Limited ‘together with the messuage or tenement known as Sunny Bank some time since erected by Collet Dobson Collet the former owner of the said secondly described piece of land and late in his own occupation’.  A house labelled Sunnyside figures on the Ordnance Survey map of London 1871 First Edition Sheet 3 close to Hazelville Road, running south from Hornsey Lane which matches well with the plan in the 1861 purchase deed.  That same house, currently No 1 Dresden Road, is certainly older than the rest of the properties in Dresden Road, which the British Land Co Ltd began to sell off to builders from 1878.

 

 

 

In the census return for 1881 Collet was described as a political writer, a teacher of singing, and a musician who was 66 (sic) from St Pancras.  On that occasion he was listed in error as Collet W Collet, and living with him at 7 Coleridge Road in Crouch End was his wife Jane who was 60 and from Scotland.  Living with the couple were two of their three youngest children, they being Harold Collett who was 22 and born at St Pancras, and Edith S Collett who was 18 and born at Crouch End, while their missing daughters Caroline and Clara were both teachers working at a school in Leicester.  The family was supported by one general servant, Annie Weller who was 20 from London.

 

 

 

During the next decade it would appear that he ceased using his initial christian name of Collet since, in the census of 1891 he referred to himself simply as Dobson Collett.  By that time in his life, at the age of 78, he and his wife Jean [Jane], age 70, had settled in the Highbury area just to the north of Islington where his sister Sophia Collett was also living at that time.  Still living with them was their unmarried son Harold Collett.

 

 

 

It was just over eight years after that when Collet Dobson Collet died at Highbury on 28th December 1898, his death at 85 being recorded at Islington register office (Ref. 1b 249).  He was followed nine years later by his wife Jane Collet nee Sloan who died on 24th September 1908 at 7 Coleridge Road, Crouch End in Finsbury Park, her death recorded at Islington register office (Ref. 1b 175).  Probate of her Will was completed in London on 14th November 1908 when her daughter Caroline Mary Collet, a spinster, and her son Harold Collet, an engineer, were named as the joint executors of her personal estate of £3,100 3 Shillings.  Seven years earlier Jane Collett, age 80 and from Scotland, was described as living on her own means, while she was still living in Highbury with three of her unmarried children, and her first grandchild.  The children were Carline, Harold and Edith, while the grandchild was Howard Collet the eldest son of Jane’s son Wilfrid who worked abroad with the Colonial Service.

 

 

 

At some time in his life Collet Dobson Collet was a Chartist and for twelve years he was Secretary of the Society for Repealing the Taxes on Knowledge.  He published several books, notably on the taxation of knowledge, and numerous articles including one on the invasion of France by Prussia in 1870 featured in the Anglo-American Times.

 

 

 

17O1

Thomas Marshall Collet - adopted

Born in 1847 in Scotland

 

The following are the children of Collet Dobson Collet by his second wife Jane Sloan:

 

17O2

Caroline Mary Collet

Born in 1855 at St Pancras, London

 

17O3

Wilfrid Robert Collet

Born in 1856 at St Pancras, London

 

17O4

Harold Barker Collet

Born in 1858 at St Pancras, London

 

17O5

Clara Elizabeth Collet

Born in 1860 at Crouch End, London

 

17O6

Edith Sophia Collet

Born in 1862 at Islington, London

 

 

 

 

17N3

Charles Howard Dobson was born at Judd Place in St Pancras, London in late 1814 and was baptised at St Pancras on 11th January 1815, the son of John Dobson and Elizabeth Barker.  It would appear that he was confirmed at Hatfield in London on 6th June 1841 before he sailed for Australia two years later.  Three years after arriving there Charles married Frances (Fanny) Eleanor Lapham at St George’s Church in Hobart, Tasmania on 3rd March 1846, Fanny having been born in Ireland on 13th November 1830.  The couple remain living in Tasmania where Charles was the Reverend Charles Howard Dobson.  Just after they were married Charles and Frances were living at Buckland in the Prosser’s Plains district, where their first two children were born, and later at Spring Bay to the east of Buckland where their final three children were born.

 

 

 

They were Alfred Dobson (born on 1st October 1848, died on 25th October 1921), Charles MacLaine Dobson (born on 20th September 1850, died in 1935), John Howard Dobson (born on 16th April 1852, died on 24th June 1924), Lucy Frances Dobson (born on 17th November 1854, died on 5th May 1935) and Edward Samuel Dobson (born on 13th March 1860).  The Reverend Charles Howard Dobson died at Sandy Bay in Hobart, Tasmania on 17th June 1888 and was buried in Queensborough Cemetery.  Just five weeks after his death his widow Frances Eleanor Dobson nee Lapham died on 24th July 1888 and was buried with her husband on 27th July.

 

 

 

Charles was appointed as a religious instructor to the convict department in Van Diemen’s Land on 16th April 1843 by Bishop Nixon and after ordination he received a salary of £200 per year with an extra £150 to cover the cost of clothes and his and passage to Tasmania.  He remained in England for the next few months to complete his studies before sailing on board the Derwent, bound for Hobart, on 19th July 1843.  He became chaplain to the prisons in Tasmania and was the Vicar of Buckland and Prosser’s Plains.

 

 

 

 

17N4

Edward Dobson was born at Judd Place in New Road, St Pancras, London on 8th December 1816, the son of John Dobson and Elizabeth Barker.  He was a civil engineer and on 7th May 1839 he married Mary Ann Lough at Shoreditch where Mary had been born on 29th September 1821, one of the daughters of Joseph and Mary Ann Lough.  It was another of their daughters who married Edward’s brother Alfred (below).  Edward Dobson was confirmed in London on 11th December 1842 and shortly thereafter the couple emigrated to New Zealand and they lived at Christchurch where Edward Dobson died on 19th April 1908.  His widow Mary Ann Dobson nee Lough died on 29th December 1913 at the age of 92 when she was living at 28 Papanui Road in Christchurch.  New information received from June Keating in 2013 provided proof of the existence of three children of the marriage of Edward Dobson, the youngest being his son Collett Barker Dobson who was born at Sumner in New Zealand on 18th November 1861, although further information received from George English in 2015 confirmed that Mary Ann Dobson nee Lough actually gave birth to a total of ten children – see below.

 

 

 

The death of Collett Barker Dobson was reported on page 18 of the Adelaide Advertiser on 9th July 1936, as follows:  Mr. Collet Barker Dobson, prominent in Australian and New Zealand theatrical circles, died suddenly yesterday in his office at the Majestic Theatre in Adelaide when he was found in a state of collapse.  The manager (Mr. Bert Lennon) immediately called in Dr. L. J. Fellew who found that Mr. Dobson was dead.  The late Mr. Dobson, who was 75, had been associated with the Fuller organisation for 26 years, first as a producer of dramas, and latterly as an assistant to Mr. Lennon.

 

 

 

A member of a distinguished New Zealand pioneering family, he was the youngest son of Mr. Edward Dobson, civil engineer and surveyor, of Christchurch.  He entered his father's office but surveying did not appeal to him and he ran away, and went on the stage where he became an accomplished actor.  In later years he produced dramas in New Zealand and Australia. He came to Adelaide 20 years ago.  His wife was Miss Meddings [Harriet Agnes Meddings 1865-1962 was his second wife, the first being Ida Lilian Thornton whom he married on 6th February 1886], daughter of the Inspector-General of Telegraphs in New Zealand.  A daughter, Miss Agnes Dobson, of St. Peters, survives.  Miss Dobson has also been associated with the stage since childhood.  The late Sir Arthur Dobson, of Christchurch, New Zealand, was a brother of Mr. C. B. Dobson, and a sister married Sir Julius von Haast, formerly Professor of Geology at Canterbury University.  In 1886 Mr. Dobson was private secretary to Sir Julius von Haast when he went to England as Commissioner for New Zealand at the Colonial and Indian Exhibition.

 

 

 

He was a grand nephew of Captain Collet Barker [Ref. 17M1], after whom Mount Barker was named.  ‘He was a wonderful friend and colleague, and I shall miss him very much; he came in quite cheerfully as usual at noon today’ said Mr. Lennon last night.  ‘I was often surprised at his wide knowledge of affairs other than the stage, and his wish that he might die in the theatre was dramatically fulfilled.’  It is stated that Mr. Dobson's death was probably due to heart failure.”  His daughter (Agnes May Dobson - 1891 to 1987) has an entry in the Australian Dictionary of Biography.

 

 

 

In addition to this it is now established that the first child born to Edward and Mary Ann Dobson was George Dobson (born on 26th June 1840, died 25th May 1866 in NZ) and that their second child was Arthur Dudley Dobson (born on 9th September 1841, died on 5th March 1934), both of whom were born at Islington in London.  It was when Arthur (later Sir Arthur) was nine years old that Edward and his two eldest sons sailed to New Zealand on board the ‘Cressy’.  However, on arrival Edward decided it was too rough a life for his two boys and sent them off to live with the Reverend Charles Dobson in Tasmania, where they stayed until being reunited with their family on 8th July 1854.  Edward’s wife and the rest of his family followed her husband and her two sons exactly one year later, when Mary Ann Dobson sailed into Lyttelton on the ‘Fatima’ on 27th December 1851.  Accompanying Mary and her younger children was Edward’s younger brother Alfred, whilst it was five years after that when Lucy Lough, Mary Ann’s sister, arrived in Lyttelton on the ‘Egmont’ during December 1856, expressly to marry her brother-in-law Alfred Dobson, which she did in 1858.

 

 

 

The death of Edward Dobson was reported in the Marlborough Express on 21st April 1908 as follows: 

“Edward Dobson, a Pioneer of Canterbury: Mr Edward Dobson, civil engineer, who died on Sunday, aged ninety-one, was one of the Pioneers of Canterbury.  He planned and carried out a number of very important public works in connection with the province.  The principal of these was the Moorhouse Tunnel, connecting Lyttelton and Christchurch — a work which was carried out with wonderful accuracy; and success.  He also laid out and superintended the construction, of the Christchurch-Lyttelton road, the great northern and the great southern roads, and the road to the West Coast over Porter's and Arthur's Passes through the Otira Gorge; the Officer's Point breakwater; the beginning of the extensive Lyttelton harbour works; drainage works in connection with the Rangiora Swamp, and other parts of the province, were carried out by him.  Mr Dobson also planned and carried out the first telegraph line established in New Zealand — that between Lyttelton and Christchurch. Under his direction a complete system of railways throughout the province was surveyed and mapped out.  The portion from Christchurch to Lyttelton, and from Christchurch to the Selwyn, being the commencement of the great southern railway, which ultimately extended to Dunedin, was completed during his tenure of office.  On vacating the Office of Provincial Engineer in 1868, Mr Dobson was appointed Commissioner to report to the Otago Government on the harbours of Oamaru, Moeraki and Waikouaiti.  In 1869 he went to Australia, and was appointed engineer to the Melbourne and Hobson's Bay United Railway Company a position which he held for two years' when the lines of the company were bought by the Government.  Mr Dobson was then engaged in connection with water supply works carried out by the Victorian Government until 1876.  In that year he returned to Canterbury, and resumed the practice of his profession in Christchurch in partnership with his son, Mr A. D. Dobson, now City Surveyor. In the five years, from 1887 Mr Dobson held the position of Lecturer on Engineering in connection with Canterbury College.

 

 

 

The late Mr Edward Dobson was a brother of the late Mr Henry [this was an error and a reference to Alfred] Dobson, the well-known architect and surveyor of Blenheim, whose death occurred in 1887, when he had reached the age of 63.  The widow of the latter who resides in Scott Street, is a sister of the widow of the former, who has survived her husband, having become an octogenarian.  The maiden name of the bereaved sisters was Lough.  Besides Mr Dobson, the City Engineer of Christchurch, the pioneer whose demise has just occurred had three sons — George Dobson, engineer, who fell a victim to the Maungatapu murderers; Collett Dobson, the well-known actor whose association with Mr Kennedy resulted in the production of such successful comedy-drama; and one son who is engaged in farming in Canterbury.  One daughter [Mary Ann Dobson] married Sir Julius Von Haast, the well-known geologist, now deceased; another [Emily Frances Dobson] is the wife of Mr Hogben, Inspector-General of Schools; while a third resides in England and a fourth in Canterbury.  The late Mr Edward Dobson visited Blenheim about thirty years ago.  Until quite recently the deceased allowed his services to be available as a consulting engineer and until ten days ago, when he first became seriously ill, he had all his senses about him, and as keen as ever.

 

 

 

The remaining seven children of Edward Dobson and Mary Ann Lough were Mary Ann Dobson (born on 21st January 1844 at Islington, died on 27th July 1913 in Rome), Caroline Dobson (born on 31st October 1845 at Kingsland, Middlesex, died on 7th July 1932 in NZ), Edward Henry Dobson (born on 2nd October 1847 at Radford, Nottinghamshire, died on 9th October 1934), Maria Eliza Dobson (born on 23rd October 1848 at Nottingham, died on 11th March 1929), Robert Dobson (born on 27th October 1852 at Sumner in NZ, died on 9th June 1893), Emily Frances Dobson (born on 2nd April 1857 at Sumner in NZ, died on 12th February 1943) and Herbert Alexander Dobson (born on 16th March 1860 at Sumner in NZ, died on 7th July 1948).  Curiously the wife of Herbert Alexander Dobson, whom he married on 23rd October 1895, was Alice Caroline Dobson who was born in New Zealand on 2nd November 1868, who died on 5th November 1930.  Alice was Herbert’s cousin and the daughter of his uncle Alfred Dobson (below).

 

 

 

In November 2015 the aforementioned George English arranged a Collett Reunion at Buckland on Maria Island in Tasmania.  The full day event included a welcome meeting with the Friend of the Church of Buckland, followed by a short service and a tour of the church and ground.  The remainder of the day was divided into four lecture session, each on the various branches of the Collett, Dobson, Barker and Lough families, with a break in between for lunch.

 

 

 

 

17N5

Sophia Dobson Collett was born at St Pancras in London in 1822 where she was baptised on 1st February 1822, the daughter of John Dobson and Elizabeth Barker. 

Just like her brother Charles Dobson Collett before her, Sophia also assumed the surname Collett, but only after her mother had died in 1872.  It was with her mother that Sophia was living from 1841 through to her death in 1872. 

 

In each of the four census returns prior to that Sophia Dobson was predominantly living in Islington, although in 1861 she and her mother were residing within the St Pancras & Regent’s Park district of London.

 

 

 

In 1841 Sophia was 19, when it was just her and her brother Collet Dobson who were still living with their mother, but thereafter it was only Sophia and her mother.  In 1851 Sophia was 29, in 1861 she was 39, and in 1871 she was 49.  Unmarried Sophia developed an early interest in music and was associated with Eliza Flower and Sarah Flower Adams in the South Place Chapel musical services under the ministry of W.J. Fox M.P.  Her brother, Charles Dobson Collett (above), was the musical director, while she composed some of the music.

 

 

 

Sophia was one of the ‘Emersonian Circle’ who gathered around the philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson in London in the late 1840s.  With this interest in religious and philosophical subjects, Sophia wrote a number of works in response to the growing atheistic movement of George Jacob Holyoake, culminating in the book ‘Phrases of Atheism, Described, Examined, and Answered’ which was published in 1860.  She was a literary representative and interpreter of religious movements in India and editor of the ‘Brahmo Year Book’.  Sophia also wrote the book ‘Indian Theism and its Relation to Christianity’ which was published in 1870.  She was friendly with many of the leading writers of her time.

 

 

 

She never married and by 1881 she was described in the census that year as Sophia D Collet who was 59 and born at St Pancras in London.  On that occasion she was living at 33 Hamilton Road in Islington, where she was employing a young servant girl, Alice Glass who was 17.  She also had a lodger in 19 years old Robert Harding who was a shop fitter’s clerk who, although born in the Netherland, was described as a British citizen.

 

 

 

Ten years later the census in 1891 confirmed that she had moved to Highbury by then where, as Sophia Collett, she was 69 years of age.  It was almost exactly three years later that Sophia Dobson Collett died at her home at 135 Avenell Road in Highbury Park, London on 27th March 1894, following which she was buried at Highgate Cemetery.  Her Will was proved in London on 28th April that same year when the two executors were named as Harold Collet, an engineer, and Edith Sophia Collett, spinster.  Her personal effects were valued at £3,665 4 Shillings 11d.  As a journalist Sophia worked for ‘The Spectator’ magazine over many years during her life, as well as producing articles and reports for other periodicals at various times. 

 

 

 

Sophia was an authoress and is credited with at least seven books that were posthumously published between 1855 and 1884.  The subjects covered in her books ranged from Atheism to Theism with the final two books being ‘Records of Theistic Churches in India’ and ‘Outlines and Episodes of Brahamic History’.  Amongst other things she also wrote The Almanac of Freedom in 1855 and George Jacob Holyoake and Modern Atheism, a biographical and critical essay, also in 1855. 

 

 

 

 

17N6

Alfred Dobson was born at Judd Place in St Pancras, London on 9th March 1824, the youngest son of John Dobson and Elizabeth Barker.  Like his brother Edward Dobson (above), Alfred also emigrated to New Zealand, but not before he was confirmed in London on 12th December 1841.  It was in New Zealand on 22nd February 1858 that he married his sister-in-law Lucy Lough on her twentieth birthday.  Lucy had been born at Shoreditch on 22nd February 1838, a daughter of Joseph Lough and Mary Ann Welch, and the younger sister of Mary Ann Lough who married Alfred’s older brother Edward (above).  Alfred had travelled to New Zealand on board the ‘Fatima’, which docked at Lyttelton on 27th December 1851, with his brother’s wife Mary Ann (Lough) and her younger children, Edward having arrived there in December 1850.  It was five years later when Lucy Lough sailed into Lyttelton on board the ‘Egmont’ during December 1856 with the intention of marrying her brother-in-law Alfred Dobson.  Alfred Dobson died in New Zealand on 6th September 1887, while his widow survived for nearly another thirty years, when Lucy Dobson nee Lough died in New Zealand on 16th October 1916 at the age of 78.

 

 

 

The following is an extract from his very lengthy obituary published in the Marlborough Express.  “Alfred was educated at the old London University, afterwards proceeding to the Continent and spending a few years in France.  On his return to England he served his articles to Mr Edward Dobson, and was engaged in the survey and construction of the Great Northern Railway, Sir William Cabitt being the principal engineer.  That celebrated engineer sent him to Germany to make a report on the electric telegraph, which had not at that period been introduced into England and he presented a valuable paper on his return, with the result that the telegraph was immediately constructed along the Great Northern Railway.  He was intimately acquainted with Sir Rowland Hill, who engaged him to superintend the stamp-printing presses at Clowes, the celebrated printer in London.  The disease which culminated in his death then began to manifest itself, and like so many more enterprising men, he turned his attention to New Zealand, emigrating there in 1851.  When the Constitution was granted by the Imperial Government to New Zealand in 1853, Sir Edward Stafford, being at that time Superintendent of Nelson, and Doctor Muller, the Provincial Secretary, appointed Alfred Dobson as Commissioner of Public Works.  He later became Chief Surveyor and Commissioner of Public Works for a short period to the Marlborough Provincial Council.  Mount Dobson was christened in his honour by Mr Joseph Ward, who planted a flag on top, and welcomed Mr Dobson, who followed him to the top during one of their survey excursions.”

 

 

 

During their time together the marriage of Alfred Dobson and Lucy Lough resulted in the birth of nine children.  They were (Reverend) Frank Barker Dobson (born on 8th April 1861 at Picton in NZ, died on 5th July 1949), Ernest Douglas Dobson (born on 28th December 1863 at Blenheim in NZ, died on 4th December 1938), Henry Bruce Dobson (born on 22nd August 1866 at Blenheim in NZ, died on 17th May 1936), Alice Caroline Dobson (born on 2nd November 1868 at Blenheim in NZ, who married her cousin Herbert Alexander Dobson), Edwin Howard Dobson (born on 26th November 1870 at Blenheim in NZ, died in 1949), Eleanor Florence Dobson (born on 31st December 1873 at Blenheim in NZ, died on 5th October 1875), Frederick Walter Dobson (born on 2nd January 1876 at Blenheim in NZ, died on 30th June 1952), Katherine Amy Dobson (born on 27th December 1877 at Blenheim in NZ, died on 31st January 1878) and Emily Rosamund Dobson (born on 21st April 1879 at Blenheim in NZ, died on 12th April 1951).  In the 1908 obituary for his older brother Edward (above), Alfred Dobson was referred to in error as Henry Dobson, ”the well-known architect and surveyor of Blenheim”.

 

 

 

 

17N7

John Howard Dobson was born at Judd Place in St Pancras, London on 16th April 1828, and he died on 9th April 1844 when he drowned in the sea at Maria Island, off the east coast of Tasmania, across the water from Spring Bay. 

 

 

 

 

17O1

Thomas Marshall Collet was born at Dunfermline in Scotland on 5th April 1847, the son of Jean Marshall nee Sloan by her first husband John G Marshall who was three years old in the Kirkgate census of 1851.  It was at Dunfermline in 1854 that his mother married widower Collet Dobson Collet from London, where the three of them settled and where Thomas’ two half-brothers and three half-sisters were born.  At the time of the census of 1861 the new Collet family was residing within the Islington area of London where Thomas Marshall from Scotland was 14.  During the next few years Thomas was either of adopted by Collet Dobson Collet or simply added the Collet surname to his birth name.

 

 

 

The change of name was confirmed by the census in 1871 when he was still living with his family at Islington, when Thos M Collett from Scotland was 23.  It was also later that same year that Thomas Marshall Collett married Ellen Yetton.  The banns for their wedding were read out on three consecutive Sundays starting on 17th September 1871 when he was described as bachelor of this parish (Islington) and she was described as a spinster of St Giles in Bermondsey.  Ten years after that the couple was residing at 90 Albert Street in St Pancras for the census in 1881.  Thomas M Collet, age 33 and from Scotland, was employed as a solicitor’s managing clerk, while his wife was simply listed as Ellen M Collet, age 34, and from Bethnal Green in London.  Although they had no children, staying with them was lodger Henry Hurrell who was 40 and a practising barrister from Kingsbridge in Devon.

 

 

 

It was just over six years later that Thomas Marshall Collet passed away, his death recorded at St Pancras (Ref. 1b 9) during the second quarter of 1887.  Probate of the Will of Thomas Marshall Collet late of 29 Mornington Crescent in Middlesex, an electrical engineer, died on 10th June 1887 at that same address.  The Will was proved by Ellen Marshall Collett, his widow and the sole executrix, while his personal estate was valued at £619 10 Shillings.  Following the death of her husband Ellen M Collet from Bethnal Green was eventually living at Barnet in both 1891 and 1901 where she was living on her own means.  She was 57 in March 1901 when she was recorded at Barnet Vale.

 

 

 

Ellen Marshall Collet near Yetton was 80 years of age when she died on 14th September 1925 at 2 Kingsley Villas, Bulwer Road in New Barnet, Hertfordshire.  Administration of her personal effects of £145 10 Shillings 6d was granted to widow Sarah Jane Bentley, while her death was recorded at Barnet register office (Ref. 3a 322).

 

 

 

 

17O2

Caroline Mary Collet was born at St Pancras in London on 27th June 1855, the eldest child of Collet Dobson Collet and Jane Marshall nee Sloan.  It was as Caroline M Collet that she was recorded in 1861 in Islington at the age five years and again in 1871 when she was still living with her family at 15.  Ten years later in 1881 when Caroline was 25 she was employed as a teacher by School Principal Agnes Parker of 50 Saxe Coburg Street in Leicester where she was also a lodger.  Also a teacher and lodger at the same address was her younger sister Clara Elizabeth (below).  The school in question was Wyggeston Girls School.

 

 

 

Caroline was not living in England at the time of the census in 1891, and may have been abroad with her brother Wilfrid, but by March 1901 she was once again living with her widowed mother in London, following the death of her father fifteen months earlier.  By that time in her life Caroline M Collet, age 45 and from St Pancras, was living with her mother and two younger siblings, Harold and Edith (below), when she was described as a retired high school mistress.

 

 

 

With the death of her mother seven year later, Caroline Mary Collet was 55 in April 1911 when she was residing within the Hampstead district of London with her brother Harold, her sister Edith, and their nephew Wilfrid Robert Collet the five-year old son of their brother Wilfrid.  Caroline was still alive in 1936 having accompanied her sisters Clara and Edith and brother Harold to Sidmouth in Devon where they lived for the remaining years of their lives.  It was just eight years after that when Caroline Mary Collett died at Honiton in Devon on 25th July 1944.

 

 

 

 

17O3

Wilfrid Robert Collet was born at St Pancras (Islington) in London during 1856, the son of noted radical reformer Collet Dobson Collet and his second wife Jane.  It was in Islington that he spent his early years, and where he was living with his family in 1861, when he was four, and again in 1871 when he was 14.  He studied music at Trinity College in London, and in 1881 he joined the Colonial Service, possibly the reason why he was absent at the time of the census that year.  In 1886 Wilfrid was the high Commissioner in Fiji.

 

 

 

It was also at Fiji on 21st April 1884 that Wilfrid Collett married Mary Ewins, the daughter of William Ewins who had been born at Armidale in New South Wales, Australia on 11th April 1865 but who, with her family, had lived in Fiji since 1875.  The marriage produced three sons, the first of which was born while they were living at Suva in Fiji.  His wife Mary suffered a premature death at Highgate in London on 28th October 1910, her death at the age of 45 being recorded at Hampstead register office (Ref. 1a 402) during the last three months of that year. By the time of the census in March 1911 her son Wilfrid Robert Collett, who was five years old, was staying at the Hampstead home of Wilfrid’s three unmarried siblings Caroline, Harold and Edith.  Two years after that on 9th May 1913 Wilfrid Collett was appointed to the post of Governor of British Honduras. 

 

 

 

He was knighted in 1915 to become Sir Wilfrid Collett KCMG LLb, and was made the Governor of British Guinea on 15th April 1917, a position he held until April 1923 when he retired.  However, three month earlier Wilfrid returned to England from Demerara in British Guiana, when he arrived in London on 6th January 1923 on the steamship Ignoma.  The ship’s passenger list recorded him as Colonial Governor aged 66 years of 81 South Hill Park, Hampstead.  It was just over six years later that Sir Wilfrid Collet passed away at 13 South Hill Park Gardens in Hampstead on 29th June 1929.  Probate of his Will was completed in London on 14th September 1929 when his two siblings Harold Collet (below), gentleman, and Sophia Collet (below), spinster, were named as the executors of his estate valued at £8,392 12 Shillings 2d.

 

 

 

17P1

Howard Barker Collet

Born in 1885 at Suva, Fiji

 

17P2

John Douglas Collet

Born in 1898

 

17P3

Wilfrid Robert Collet

Born in 1905 at Islington, London

 

 

 

 

17O4

Harold Barker Collet was born at St Pancras in 1858, the youngest son and the third of the five children of Collet Dobson Collet and his second wife Jane Marshall nee Sloan.  As Harold Collet he was two years old in the Islington census of 1861, and was 12 years of age in 1871 when he was still living there with his parents.  By 1881 the census that year revealed that he was residing at 7 Coleridge Road in Islington, the home of his parents.  By that time in his life he was working as an accountant clerk, when he was 22 and his place of birth was confirmed as St Pancras.

 

 

 

He was still not married ten years after that when, in 1891 and at the age of 32, he was the only sibling still living with his elderly parents, who by then, were living in Highbury.  Three years later Harold Collet was described as an engineer when he and his sister Edith Sophia Collet (below) were joint executors of the 1894 Will of their aunt Sophia Dobson Collet.  It was also in Highbury that he was living with his widowed mother in March 1901, following the death of his father at Highbury two years earlier when Harold and his sister Edith Sophia were once again named as the executors of his Will.  Also living with them were Harold’s sisters Caroline and Edith.  The census that year described Harold Collett as being 42 and from St Pancras, whose occupation was that of a secretary at a Public Boys’ School in Highbury.  His mother died in 1908 following which Harold and his sister Caroline Mary were both named as executors of her Will.

 

 

 

After the death of his mother Harold and his two sisters Caroline and Edith left Highbury and moved to the Hampstead area of London, where all three of them were living together in the census of 1911.  Head of the household was his eldest sister Caroline Mary Collet at 55, while Harold Collet was 52.  Living with them and sister Edith was the youngest son of their brother Wilfrid, Wilfrid Robert Collett who was five.  Many years later in 1936 Harold and all three of his sisters, Caroline, Clara and Edith, were living at Sidmouth in Devon.  It was eight years later that Harold Collet, age 86, died at Honiton on 7th February 1945, his death recorded at Honiton register office (Ref. 5b 18) during the first quarter of that year, his sister Caroline having died there during the previous year.  One unverified source states that he had a son Peter Collet, even though it would appear that he never married.

 

 

 

17P4

Peter Collet - unconfirmed

Date and place of birth unknown

 

 

 

 

17O5

Clara Elizabeth Collet was born at Sunny Bank, Hornsey Lane in Crouch End, London on 10th September 1860, the daughter of Collet Dobson Collet and his second wife Jane Marshall although shortly after she was born, when Clara was six months old, she and her family were living in Islington.  At the age of 12 she was sent to Calais to learn French and in 1873 she took a place at the North London Collegiate School where she sat her Cambridge Local Examinations in 1876.

 

In 1877 Clara formed The Dogberry Club with Eleanor Marx, the daughter of Karl Marx, whose father often attended the meetings.  The club’s primary purpose was the reading of plays and in particular those written by William Shakespeare, the name having been taken from the character Mr Dogberry in Much Ado About Nothing. 

 

 

 

During the following year her family moved to 7 Coleridge Road in Crouch End, the same year that Clara left London to begin her working life in Leicester.  It was as a teacher at the Wyggeston Girls School where, in the successive years of 1879 and 1880, she achieved her first and final Bachelor of Arts Degrees and three years later passed her teacher’s diploma.

 

 

 

According to the 1881 Census, Clara was living at 50 Saxe Coburg Street in Leicester St Margaret’s where she was a teacher holding a Bachelor of Arts London.  She was aged 20 and born in London and also living at the same address was her teacher sister Caroline M Collett (above).  The house at 50 Saxe Coburg Street was the home of Mr and Mrs Charles Parker, Agnes Parker being a School Principal, so presumably the two Collett sisters worked at the school and were employed by Mrs Parker.

 

 

 

While at Leicester the Gimson family had become Clara’s closest friends.  Josiah Gimson was a successful local manufacturer of machinery.  Despite being rich he had a well-developed social conscience and wished to extend co-operative activities, improve conditions in Leicester and achieve equality without revolution.  He was an ardent supporter of the Secular Society.  His growing family agreed with his views. Clara had become especially friendly, firstly with Sydney Gimson and later with Ernest Gimson, two of his sons, with whom she spent many evenings dancing and socialising at local events.  She was to remain in touch with Ernest for much of her life, and his close family association with William Morris resulted in him securing a good position, later to become arguably the best furniture maker in the Arts and Crafts tradition.

 

 

 

The following was recorded during her final term at the school.  ”The school bell rang out signalling the end of lessons for the day.  Clara Collett, who had been teaching at Wyggeston Girls School for the previous six years, was looking forward to the evening ahead.  William Morris was to give a lecture for the Leicester Secular Society to which Clara had been affiliated through her friendship with the Gimson family.  This was despite her being a believer in God herself, albeit as a non-conformist Unitarian.  William Morris was to give a lecture entitled ‘Art and Socialism’.  It was to prove an interesting talk despite his rather dry delivery, as he read the paper with little expression.”

 

 

 

In 1884 Clara was elected onto the council of the Charity Organisation Society, and that same year attended a lecture given by William Morris.  Shortly after she returned to London in 1885 to begin her MA degree in Political Economy and the following year became a Master of Arts and won the Joseph Hume scholarship to continue her mathematical studies.  That amounted to £20 per year for the next three years and she supplemented the money by giving lectures.  It is worth noting that she was the first woman to gain a Master of Arts Degree in Political Economy.  By 1887 Clara was giving lectures to supplement her studies while it was during the autumn of following year that she took up residency in the East End of London in order to begin collecting statistics for Booth's chapter on 'Women's Work'.  It was also during that same autumn when Jack the Ripper murdered five or six women.

 

 

 

However, before leaving Leicester, Ernest Gimson pursued Clara and despite being four years her junior, asked for her hand in marriage.  After a great deal of deliberation and careful thought, Clara turned him down.  She decided that she did not love him and although he would make an excellent choice of husband in many ways, she was not prepared to compromise love.  She said at that time “It is much better to live an old maid and get a little honey from the short real friendships I can have with men for whom I really care myself, than to be bound for life to a man just because he thinks he cares for me”.  Undeterred, Ernest moved to London in 1886 to be near Clara, where he took up a post with J D Sedding.

 

 

 

From 1889 to 1892 Clara was engaged in 'Balfour's Battersea Enquiry', was elected vice president of Toynbee Economic Club, collected information for Booth's work on Pensions – during which she worked for a while at the workhouse in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, and carried out work as Assistant Commissioner for the Royal Commission on Labour.

 

 

 

In 1892 she was made a Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society and began employment as a Labour Correspondent for the Civil Service at the Board of Trade.  Two years later she moved from living in the East End back to Crouch End, where she took up residence at 36 Berkeley Road and four years after she moved again, this time to 90 Woodside in Wimbledon.  And it was there that she was living at the time of the census in 1901 when she was recorded in error as Clara E Collet, age 40 and from Islington, whose occupation was that of a labour correspondence with the Board of Trade.

 

 

 

She was a major figure in the putting together many reforms relating to the pay and working conditions of women, and during 1903 she was promoted to the position of Senior Investigator at the Labour Department.  That was followed by another move to 4 Vernon Chambers in Theobald’s Road.  During her time as Secretary of The Economic Club in 1905 Lloyd George became President of the Board of Trade to be replaced three years later by Winston Churchill, at which time Clara presented evidence to the Fair Wages Committee.  The following year Clara gave further evidence to the Trade Board’s Act which resulted in improved wages for sweaters.  She then resigned from Civil Service life in 1910 over a disagreement regarding the Labour Exchange Act, which was later withdrawn following a discussion with Llewellyn Smith.

 

 

 

According to the census in 1911 Clara Elizabeth Collett, age 50 and from Islington, was residing in the Holborn district of London.  By 1919 she was living at 81 South Hill Park in Hampstead the home of her brother Sir Wilfrid Collet who was abroad in British Guiana until 1923, while it was during 1920 that she finally retired from the civil service.  Around 1930 she made her penultimate house move to Highgate and 61 Swains Lane from where she had a direct view into the cemetery and the grave of Karl Marx.  It was while residing at that address where she co-wrote “The History of the Collett Family” with Henry Haines Collett which was published in 1935 and “The Present Position of Women in Industry” which was published in 1933 and which later appeared in the Royal Statistical Society Journal in 1945. 

 

 

 

The family of Henry Haines Collett can be found in

Part Four – The Great Western Line (Ref. 4N25)

 

 

 

In 1936 Clara was diagnosed with breast cancer and, following invasive surgery, she and her brother Harold and sisters Caroline and Edith moved to Sidmouth to convalesce.  Over the remaining years of her life she wrote many articles and diaries including “The Letters of John Collett [Ref. 17K2] to his sister Eliza” and “Joseph Collett [Ref. 17J3] Private Letter Books”, the latter being published in 1933 and edited by H H Dodwell who was a leading Indian historian.  Clara Elizabeth Collett died at Sidmouth in Devon on 3rd August 1948 and her body was donated for medical research.  During her life she was a Fellow of University College in London and a Governor of Bedford College. 

 

 

 

The obituary for Clara Elizabeth Collett was published in The Times in London on 5th August 1948, as follows:  “Miss Clara Elizabeth Collet, for many years a tireless social worker, died at her home at Sidmouth on Tuesday at the age of 87.  She was born on September 10, 1860, and after attending the North London Collegiate School worked as an assistant mistress at the Wyggeston Girls’ School, Leicester, for some seven years, and for the remainder of her life her interest in the welfare of schoolmistresses never waned.  In 1885 she decided to read for a London degree, and graduated three years later.  Then came four years as an assistant to Charles Booth, and while working for him she was elected president of the Association of Assistant Mistresses in Secondary Schools.  She was not, however, destined to return to teaching; her research under Booth into labour conditions in London had revealed her vocation.  When she left him in 1892 it was to begin a long series of investigations on behalf of the Board of Trade, by which she was employed continuously from 1893 to 1917.  After a brief period from 1917 to 1920 in the Ministry of Labour she served as a member of various trade boards for 11 years.  She was a member of the Council of the Royal Statistical Society from 1919 to 1935 and of the Council of the Royal Economic Society from 1920 to 1941, a governor of Bedford College for Women, and a Fellow of University College of London.”

 

 

 

Her life was also acknowledged in the December edition of the Genealogist’s Magazine published in London, which read as follows:  “The death of Miss Clara Collet which took place on August 3rd brought to an end a membership of this Society which had lasted for more than twenty-eight years.  Born on September 10th 1860, her life’s work was concerned with the welfare of schoolmistresses.  Early in the nineties she was elected President of the Association of Assistant Mistresses in Secondary Schools, and from 1893 to 1917 she was employed by the Board of Trade.  She was a member of the Council of the Royal Statistical Society from 1919 to 1935, and of the Council of the Royal Economic Society from 1920 to 1941.  She was a governor of Bedford College and a Fellow of University College, London.”

 

 

 

In 2004 a book on her life, entitled Clara Collett 1860 – 1948 by Deborah McDonald, was published which included a forward by Joan Ruddock MP.

 

 

 

 

17O6

Edith Sophia Collet was born at Islington in 1862, the fifth and last child born to Collet Dobson Collet by his second wife Jane Marshall nee Sloan.  It was at Islington that she was living with her family in 1871, when she was recorded as Edith A Collet aged eight years, but by 1881, when she was 18, she and her family were once again living in Crouch End where her family was living two years before she was born.  On the occasion of the census in 1881 the family was living at 7 Coleridge Road where Edith was again recorded as Edith S Collet. 

 

 

 

Sometime after 1881 Edith made her own way in the world and ten years later she was living and working in Hastings in 1891.  The census that year was the only one that recorded her surname with two ts, so she was Edith S Collett, age 28 and from Islington.  With the death of her father at the end of 1899, Edith S Collet was back living with her widowed mother at Highbury, just north of Islington, in 1901 with her two siblings Caroline and Harold, and their nephew Wilfrid Robert Collet, their brother Wilfrid’s youngest child.  She was unmarried at 38 and her occupation was that of a high school teacher.

 

 

 

In 1908 her mother died, following which Edith and her two siblings left Highbury when they moved to nearby Hampstead where they were residing in April 1911.  The census return that year listed her as Edith Sophia Collet who was 48.  In 1929, following the death of both her parents, it was Edith – as Sophia, and her older brother Harold (above), who were named as the executors of their father’s estate.  By 1931 the three siblings of Edith, Caroline and Harold were living at Sidmouth in Devon, where they were joined in 1936 by sister Clara Elizabeth.  Edith Sophia Collet died at Honiton in 1946 at the age of 84, her sister Caroline having died there in 1944 and her brother Harold in 1945, while it was two years later that the last of the quartet of siblings passed away when Clara died during 1948.

 

 

 

 

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Howard Barker Collet was born at Suva in Fiji on 13th April 1885, the eldest child of Colonial Service employee Wilfrid Collet and his wife Mary Ewins who were married abroad in 1884.  It would appear that he was educated in England while his parents were still living abroad because, in 1901 when he was 15, Howard B Collet was staying with his widowed grandmother Jane Collet at her home in Highbury, London.  Three years later Howard arrived in Canada and it was at MacKenzie in Saskatchewan in 1906 that he was recorded as a North Western Mounted policeman from Fiji who was 23.  His father, the Governor of British Honduras from 1913, was knighted in 1915 and during the previous year Howard enlisted with the Canadian Overseas Expeditionary Force at the beginning of World War One, although nothing is known at this time regarding his military service.

 

 

 

Sometime during his years in Canada he lived at Calgary where he trained and worked as a veterinary surgeon and in 1920 he returned to England.  Howard Barker Collet married Lucia Beatrice Bergner at Hampstead in London where the event was recorded (Ref. 1a 1873) during the third quarter of 1920 and during the summer of the following year their son Wilfred Peter Guy Collett was born at Southwark in London.  However, prior to the birth the newly married couple sailed from Liverpool to Montreal towards the end of 1920 when they were recorded as Mr H B Collet, a surgeon aged 35, and his wife Mrs Collet who was 34, who travelled first class.  It would appear that as soon as Lucia realised she was expecting their baby she returned to England where Howard installed her at 81 South Hill Park in Hampstead, the home of his widowed father who was living and working in British Guiana at that time.

 

 

 

Howard later made the same journey alone on board the Canadian Pacific Line ship Minnedosa.  The details on the passenger list confirmed that Howard B Collet, age 36, a veterinary surgeon, sailed out of Montreal and arrived at Liverpool on 16th May 1921, his ultimate destination being 81 South Hill Park in Hampstead.  The birth of his son was subsequently recorded at Southwark register office (Ref. 1d 12) during July-August-September that year when his mother’s maiden name was recorded in error as Bergnes instead of Bergner.

 

 

 

From 1924 to 1936 Howard and Lucia and their son resided at 49 Cambridge Street in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.  Upon his retirement Howard and Lucia left Buckinghamshire when they made a final move to the village of Tredington, just north of Shipston-on-Stour in Warwickshire, where the couple spent the last decade of their life together.

 

 

 

It was at Tredington that Howard Barker Collet was still living at the time of his death on 10th September 1947.  At that time he was a patient at the Ellen Badger Hospital in Shipston on the day he passed away.  The probate of his Will was dealt with at Birmingham on 24th February 1948, which referred to his widow as Lucia Beatrice Collet and his son Wilfred Peter Guy Collet, who was a trainee.  The estate of Howard Barker Collett amounted to £8,116 5 Shillings 1d.

 

 

 

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Wilfred Peter Guy Collet

Born in 1921 at Southwark

 

 

 

 

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John Douglas Collet was born in 1898, the son of Wilfrid Collet, who was knighted in 1915, and Mary Ewins.  He was only twelve years old when his mother died in London, and that tragic event may have had an adverse effect on John since, on the day of the census in 1911, J D Collet aged 12 years was an inmate at the Earlswood Asylum in Redhill near Reigate.  His place of birth was stated as being unknown.  It was just over six years later when the burial of John Douglas Collett was recorded at Reigate in Surrey on 10th May 1917.  At the time of his death, at the age of 18, he was described as living at the Earlswood Asylum.  The Royal Earlswood Hospital in Redhill (aka The Royal Earlswood Asylum for Idiots) opened in 1855 and received a Royal Charter from Queen Victoria in 1862.  It closed in 1997 and for several decades Katherine Bowes-Lyon and Nerissa Bowes-Lyon, nieces of the Queen Mother and first cousins of Queen Elizabeth II, were kept hidden away at the hospital.

 

 

 

 

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Wilfrid Robert Collet was born at Islington in 1905, the youngest of the three known sons of Wilfrid Collet and his wife Mary Ewins.  Following the death of his mother died in 1910 and with his father working abroad, Wilfrid Robert Collet who was five years old in the census of 1911 was living with three of his father’s siblings at their home in the Hampstead area of London.  They were bachelor Harold Collett, who was a secretary at a boys’ school, and his two unmarried sisters Caroline Mary Collet and Edith Sophia Collet.  His father was knighted in 1915.

 

 

 

The following has been written about Wilfrid Robert BA (London), Music B (Cantab), LRAM, LTCL, who was born in London during 1905 and who was more commonly known as Bob Collet.  He matriculated in 1927 and was educated at Bedales School at Steep near Petersfield in Hampshire, University College in London, Fitzwilliam House in Cambridge, and Privately with Frida Kindler.  He married Ruth Isabelle Salaman in Paris in 1932 and was pianist and a piano teacher at Bedales School where he was the Assistant Music Master from 1939 to 1946.  From there he worked for the British Broadcasting Corporation as an assistant in the Music Department from 1946 to 1948.  On leaving the BBC he took up the post of visiting piano teacher at Harrow School from 1949.  Three years later he was a Professor of Piano at Guildhall School of Music & Drama, a role he held from 1952.  He wrote a number of articles that were published including one on the Score on Wilbye and another on the composer Berlioz.  His home address was 13 Roy Road at Northwood in Middlesex and he died there in 1993, where his widow was still living in 1999.

 

 

 

Ruth Isabelle Salaman was born at Barley in Hertfordshire on 15th June 1909, the daughter of scientist Doctor Redcliffe Salaman.  Upon the premature death of her mother in 1924 Ruth was sent to Bedales School in Hampshire when, at the age of 15, she met her future husband.  After Bedales, Ruth entered the Slade School of Art where she became one of the ‘Euston Road School of Artists’.  Her marriage to Bob Collet produced three daughters, Jane, Helen and Naomi.  It was at her Norwood home that the widow Ruth Isabelle Collet nee Salaman died on 15th June 2001, her ninety-second birthday.

 

 

 

It is known that the couple’s youngest daughter, Naomi Roberts nee Collet, has a website on which she writes “My mother, who lived from 1909 to 2001, started making linocuts in the 1950s when she was in her late forties.  Up until then she had mainly been a drawer and a painter, although she had studied etching in the thirties in Paris at the studio of Stanley William Hayter.  To begin with she did prints for Christmas cards, but in about 1960 she started to illustrate Old Testament stories as well.  These bible prints were nearly all made to be place cards for the Seder night supper at the Westminster Synagogue in London, which she attended.

 

 

 

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Jane Elizabeth Collet

Born in 1932

 

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Helen Rachel Collet

Born circa 1935

 

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Naomi Caroline Edith Collet

Born circa 1938

 

 

 

 

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Wilfred Peter Guy Collet was born on 5th July 1921, the son of Howard Barker Collet and his wife Lucia Beatrice Bergner.  His birth was recorded at Southwark register office (Ref. 1d 12) during the third quarter of the year under the name Wilfred P G Collet, when his mother’s maiden name was written as Bergnes.  Around the time of the death of his father at Tredington in Warwickshire in 1947 Wilfred P Collet was listed in the 1948 Electoral Roll for the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham as a resident of the Fulham ward of the borough.  He was also named in his father’s Will, when he was described as a trainee without providing a clue to his profession.

 

 

 

After a further ten year Wilfred P G Collet was recorded living in North Kensington during 1958 within the London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.  Less than thirty years later Wilfred was still living in London, when the death of Wilfred Peter G Collet, age 65, was recorded at Hackney register office (Ref. 12 1400) during January 1987. 

 

 

 

 

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Jane Elizabeth Collet was born in 1932, the eldest of the three daughters of Wilfrid Robert Collet and Ruth Isabelle Salaman.  She married Karl Miller and was the author of Seductions: studies in reading and literature” published by Harvard University Press in November 1991, as well as several other works on women’s studies.  She lived at Worlds End in Chelsea, London, and is an Emeritus Professor of University College London University, as is her husband Karl Miller.  They have three children, Daniel Collet Miller who was born at Kensington in 1957, Samuel Miller who was born at Chelsea in 1962 and Georgia A Miller who was also born at Chelsea in 1964.

 

 

 

 

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Helen Rachel Collet was possibly born around 1935 and she was very likely twenty-one when she married Doctor Jonathan Miller, the neurosurgeon, playwright and actor who performed Beyond the Fringe with Peter Cook, Dudley Moore and Alan Bennett in the 1960s.  Jonathan was born on 21st July 1934 and attended St John’s College at Cambridge University.  He and Helen have three children, two sons and a daughter, and resides in the Camden area of North London.  Helen Rachel Collet was also a doctor.

 

 

 

 

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Naomi Caroline Edith Collet was possibly born around 1938 and it was in 1963 that she married Alan Roberts.  Once married they lived in Bristol where they had a son and a daughter.