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Jack Priestley’s Family History

This site is a work-in-progress. There is a massive amount to cover. I have included both male and female lines. Keep coming back for more.
I have numbered the generations working backwards from Jack’s as (1)

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ELIZABETH HADWIN. We know that Christiana Hadwin who married John Dinsdale in Fewston, Yorkshire, was born in Whitehaven, Cumberland. The censuses and her age at death put Christiana’s birth at 1809-10.

It is an unusual name, so it is highly likely that her baptism is the following, 5 years later.

Baptism. Whitehaven.
1815 Jan 8  Christian daughter of Elizabeth Hadwin.

Elizabeth may have been reluctant to bring her child for baptism and confess that she was born out of wedlock, but been persuaded later that she needed to be baptised.


There are two possible baptisms for Elizabeth in the Whitehaven area.

Baptism. Whitehaven
1786 Apr 2  Betty daughter of James and Mary Hadwin

Baptism. St Bees.
1788 Elizabeth daughter of Joseph and Mary Hadwin

If it was the former, then she was the middle of five children. Her elder brother John became a tailor, so that may be her father’s trade.

The second Elizabeth was the eldest of 4 children.  A brother was baptised in St Bees in 1790. Then the family moved to Whitehaven, where twins were born in 1794.

Joseph Hadwin of St Bees, who is probably related, was a rope-maker in 1841.


Whitehaven is a largely Georgian port on the NW coast, west of the Lake District. Its prosperity was founded on the mining of coal nearby and the shipment of it from Whitehaven. By the 19th century it was being overtaken by other ports with deep-water facilities, like Bristol and Liverpool.

Whitehaven [1]

St Bees is a village on the coast, 4 miles south of Whitehaven. It is dominated by the ancient Priory, the nave and transepts of which are still used as the parish church.


Five years after Christian’s baptism, Elizabeth had another daughter baptised.

Baptism. Whitehaven
1820 Jan 16  Mary daughter of Elizabeth Hadwin

Repeated births of children out of wedlock may mean that the mother was a prostitute.


We have found no further records we can confidently link with Elizabeth. There was a death of Elizabeth Hadwin in the Whitehaven district in the third quarter of 1850, but no age is given and Elizabeth is a common name.

If this is the same Elizabeth, then she was aged 62-4.


[1] Whitehaven.org.uk





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