Madder in London - Thomas

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Thomas Madder married Sarah PRIOR on the 26th of September 1814 at St George Hanover Square. Thomas was described as a mechanic at his children’s baptisms and died in 1831, before the birth of his last child.


The loss of a father at an early age would have led to poverty and eventually to crime, as the two eldest children were both to experience the inside of a prison cell.


Mark, born 1815, appears in the Criminal Registers twice in 1837. First in Middlesex for an appearance at the County Sessions at Clerkenwell on 7th February, where he was sentenced to one month’s imprisonment for Larceny. A Statement in the London Metropolitan Archives shows that he had stolen a piece of ham from a shop window. The second appearance was on 29th June at the Kent county sessions in Maidstone for Larceny from the Person – this time he was acquitted.


The second son John Thomas, born 1819, was only 19 when he appeared at the Central Criminal Court on the 25th October 1837. He was found guilty of stealing clothes and books (bibles) from soldiers at the Regents Park Barracks of the 2nd Regiment of Life Guards. He was transported for seven years. He departed on the Bengal Merchant 28th March 1838 and arrived in New South Wales on the 21st July. What happened to him after that, I haven’t discovered. An interesting addition to this affair is that John’s widowed mother Sarah was married on the 4th Jun 1838 to John HIGGATE – a Private in the 2nd Life Guards!


Elizabeth was born in 1821. She may be the Elizabeth NUL(?) visiting John and Sarah Higgate in 1851. She may also be the Elizabeth Madder who had her shawl and handkerchief stolen after getting drunk at the Angel public house in Shadwell in 1840.


The next two children of Thomas and Sarah, twins Samuel (1824-1824) and Charles (1824-1830) both died young. As might have the youngest, posthumous Thomas Clement born in January 1831 – I have found no trace of him.


 Mark seems to have avoided the law (and the census in 1841) and married Sarah ROSS in 1857 at St Clement Danes, although they already had seven children. They went on to have another six.


Only three boys; Mark (1852-1902), John (1857-1926) & Francis (1860-1940) and three girls; Mary Ann (1855-?), Amelia Emily (1862-?) and Hannah (1865-?) survived to adulthood. The girls marry but there seem to be no children from the men.


Mark disappears after 1871 until he dies in 1902 at the age of 52.


John joined the Army in 1878 as a driver in the Royal Engineers, was put on the reserve in 1884 and discharged in 1890. He served at Aldershot & Chatham. John then disappears until 1911 when he turns up in Highbury, as a jobbing gardener. The census says he was a widower, but no wife or children have been found.


Francis (Frank) seems to spend most of his life in Strand Workhouse, but lives to1940 the age of 79.