Judith Walker's Holiday 1830 - 7 and Epilogue
Mary left Worcester a day or so earlier than she had planned, but she was very much in need of getting back home. However, she did seem to enjoy her time here, and Little Harry was so pleased to have her here. She had hard work to tear herself away from him. That little fellow was quite broken-hearted. When she left he was almost in fits.
She sent us a letter here telling us about her trip home. She set off to Birmingham about about half past 1 and got there at half past 5. She said it was rather a wet drive. Henry and Charles met her there. As it was fine in the evening, she and Charles went with her to see the different churches and chapels and other buildings which she thought were worth seeing.
They stayed at at the Albion Inn which she found very comfortable, and slept well, and is where the Liverpool coach leaves from. They saw her safely off after breakfast on Monday. Henry was then intending to go to York where my son Charles was also going. Because some orders came in on Saturday, he then fixed to meet with Charles on Sunday or Monday in Birmingham, which is why they were both there. They thought it best that Mary should get on and not wait to travel with them the rest of the way. She was very anxious to get home. Charles rode with her a little out of the town, giving her directions as to what she had to do, and wrapping her up in a famous manner. It was a fine morning but cold, such a change from the previous week.
She reports that from Warrington to Liverpool they had a miserably cold ride, but happily her father was there to meet her at the Bell, and she got home about half past 7 o'clock. Her sisters had gone to take tea with William Holt's aunts, so she got her own tea, unpacked, and settled back, and then wrote her letters.
She writes that her parents appear to be thinner and far from well. Agnes, although she is stouter, is still coughing and looks ill. She wishes that Agnes had been able to come to Worcester instead of Nottingham. Mary herself has had her headaches, as she often did when she was here. I expect it is related to her eyes.
I am about to commence my journey home to York, so will end this journal of our summer adventure.
This book is fictionalised but based on real events. Most of the information was conveyed between Mary and William through letters to each other. All the trips and people were as they were listed in the letters, but I have no idea whether Mary shared her thoughts and plans to such an extent with Mrs. Walker. Some of the dialogue that I have given to Mrs. Walker was actually Mary's voice from her letters.
As far as the rest of the story goes, Mary and William (who went home to Liverpool in December 1831) were married in 1832. They had 10 children: William F, Mary, Thomas, Theodosia, Ellen, George, J Russell, Agnes, Edith and Isabel. The eldest daughter, Mary Holt, married Robert Hall, who was the father of Lawrence Hall, who annotated the letters. There is a collection of 199 letters – dating from 1790 to 1890, and between many others as well as Mary and William. Many of the notes on the letters deal with details of the leaders of the chapels of the Unitarian church that the family were attending at the time. It was written up by Lawrence as a history of the chapels, as much as anything. Mary Cox Holt died in 1875 (aged 68). William died in 1848 (aged 41).
I think Judith Walker died in 1849 in Stockton, and that her husband John had died several years earlier. Her son George and his family did return to York, and lived there the rest of their lives. Mary Ann died in 1857, but George Walker (father of my diarist) didn't die until 1880, and after his wife died, one of his nieces from Worcester went to York to keep house for him.
Henry and Hy Walker continued to live in Worcester and had five more children Jane, John, Maria, Eliza and Fred.
Harry Walker (the child in this book) continued to live in Worcester. He wrote poetry, and I saw a copy of one of his books in the Worcester library.
The other Walkers I know details of from the Diary of Charles Walker, 1851, which is in my possession. Charles was the only child of George and Mary Ann Walker.
Maria Walker Cox and her husband Charles, had the two boys, Edward and Charles, and then had a daughter, Mary Lucy in 1834.. Her son Edward became quite a well known artist.
Charles Walker lived first in Stockton, and later in York – and had just the two children – Charles George and Lilla.
Jane Walker, I think, married William Chephan, and had at least two children, Thomas, born in 1851 and Eugene, who was older. They lived in Stockton.
Mary Ann Walker was married to James Thackray, and they lived in York. They had two sons, Edward and George.
Edward Walker married Eliza, and they had a son, Edward. They lived in York.
Letters from Mary Cox to William Holt, and from William Holt to Mary Cox, from the collection of Lawrence Hall, who transcribed them and made appropriate footnotes. Sent to me by Janet Hall Sayer. I have written up most of the letters and put them in some sort of order, and published them in Lulu, under my control, but with the author being Lawrence Hall, who was the family member most involved with the storing and research on them. I wrote this book as the author because so much of it was creative writing. There were only two or three brief references to Mrs.Walker in the letters.
Emails from Janet Hall Sayer and Gwen Rankin.
Christopher Hibbert, George IV: Regent and King 1811–1830
Pigot's Directory of 1828-29.