William Farmer

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William-4 FARMER (m. Mary ?), John Wm.-3 FARMER (m. Phoebe Cory), Florence Phoebe-2 FARMER (m. Edward L. SHEPPARD), Sidney Wm.-1 SHEPPARD (m. Helen J. Coburn), James Wm.0 SHEPPARD (m. Maureen M. Harding)

Staplehurst, Kent Our Staplehurst roots

William FARMER
1828 Marriage to Mary Aylward
Saint Peter And Saint Paul, Milton By Gravesend 25 Nov 1828 William Farmer mar. Mary Aylward

1833 Tragedy
A Sad Tale Unflolding
Wombwell Hall
Wombwell Hall

In January 1833,at Wombwell Hall the home of Joseph Harman, a young maid said to have been strikingly beautiful was killed by a coachman, William Farmer. Farmer, having shot the girl, attempted to commit suicide by cutting his own throat. As Miss Brabazon in her little book (some editions only) A Month in Gravesend reported gleefully, the blood of murdered and murderer mingled together on the floor.

William, survived; at the subsequent trial by pleading that his pistol had gone off accidentally the charge was reduced to manslaughter; later he was sentenced to transportation for his part in a robbery with his son Tom, only to return years later to Gravesend, where he was regarded as a criminal and public nuisance. Eventually he was taken ill and ended his days in Gravesend workhouse.

1838 Baptism: William
William son of William and Mary born 18 May; baptized June 17,1838 Saint Peter And Saint Paul, Milton By Gravesend

1841 Burial: William
William son of William and Mary 20 May 1841 Saint Peter And Saint Paul, Milton By Gravesend

1840 Baptism: John
John son of William and Mary baptized Dec 30 1839 Saint Peter And Saint Paul, Milton By Gravesend

1841 Census
Ages rounded ±5 years Wakefield Street, Gravesend (ref HO107 458-08 folio 4:)
William Farmer age 25? labourer
Mary do age 25
Mary do age 10
Thomas do age 6
John do age 6 months
all born in county
?Given the age of Mary and Thomas (10 and 6) William's declared age of 25 is suspect perhaps 35 would be realistic.

1844 Baptism: Elizabeth
Elizabeth b 03 Jan 1844, Saint George, Gravesend, Kent, dau of William and Mary.

1848 Burial: Mary (Aylward) Farmer
Mary Burial 5 March 1848 Saint Peter And Saint Paul, Milton By Gravesend

1848 Gravesend-Milton Union Workhouse
Admission 1 September 1848 William and sons, Thomas and John admitted citing "sickness" as the reason for seeking relief.

1849 Conviction: Maidstone, Kent 05 July 1849
PCOM 3/44:Home Office and Prison Commission: Male Licences
Licence number 4862: William Farmer.
Caption order and prison record from when he was convicted of Receiving four shawls, two scarfs, two dresses, one victorine, one piece of cotton print, one piece of calico knowing them to have been stolen at the Quarter Sessions at Maidstone, Kent 05 July 1849.
Then aged 44 years and by trade a Labourer.
Sentence: Life commuted to 15 years transportation.
Licence granted 07 February 1856, for early release from Stirling Castle hulk.
1851 Census
  • Farmer William 42 Prisoner Railway Porter Staplehurst, Kent -, Maidstone HO107/1617/F? CD5 HO1617b.pdf p.579
  • Jno FARMER pauper inmate age 11 b.Gravesend in the Gravesend & Milton Union HO107/1608 folio 177 page 7
  • Elizabeth (bn 1844) is living with her aunt and uncle in Henhurst, Maidstone HO107/1616/F? .
1858 Burial: William Farmer
William Burial 3 April 1858 Saint George Gravesend