View Full Version : Sad twist of fate

11-06-08, 19:48
My three times great gran was born and spent her early years in Leek Workhouse, left to go into service, married etc, and lied on every census about her birthplace, only found out when someone found her in 1841 as a 4 yr old in Leek Workhouse.

Just got her death cert today, she died in Oldham Workhouse aged 65, felt sad that she still could not escape the stigma of the Workhouse no matter how hard she tried.

I know the Workhouse was often used as a hospital, but still of all the places for her to die.

Really sad


Little Nell
11-06-08, 19:55

Poor dear! How sad that our ancestors lived in fear that their "shame" would be uncovered. And dying in a workhouse infirmary was probably fairly grim.

I found one of my gt gt gt grandmothers died in a workhouse even though she had children around. I just hope she was in the infirmary and not there as a permanent residence.

11-06-08, 20:01
My gg grandad was the informant, obviously for one reason or another he could not care for her himself,

At some point I will have to find out if the Oldham Workhouse records have survived so I can discover how long she was in there.

The Leek early ones had not survived so frustratingly I could not find out why her, her mother and aunt were in there.

Merry Monty Montgomery
11-06-08, 20:06
At some point I will have to find out if the Oldham Workhouse records have survived

www.workhouses.org.uk - The Workhouse Web Site (http://www.workhouses.org.uk/index.html?Oldham/Oldham.shtml)

There's a link about Records at the bottom of the page.

11-06-08, 20:43
It is always sad knowing people have been born and then died in the workhouse. One of my most poignant finds was a young lad whose father died, aged 32, when he was 8 and he was apprenticed to a shoemaker. He had his own "business" living with his mother, never married and when she died he died not long after, age 48 leaving all his money £33 4 shilllings to the local Workhouse Master. I found all this in a will he had written. He had nothing else to leave and nothing was left to siblings. That got me thinking.


Val wish Id never started
11-06-08, 23:02
I found myself crying today when somebody I am researching was on a census described as no occupation paralysed.
isnt it silly but I felt so upset for the life he must have led.

11-06-08, 23:09
I've got quite a few that died in the workhouse but as it was the only infirmary around - which if you look at modern hospitals you often find buildings or walls that belonged to the original workhouse.

I was up in Berwick upon Tweed a few years back and looked at some workhouse records and found a child who had been with her elderly grandmother in the 1851 census but by the next census she was in the workhouse and shortly after had been placed with two lots of employers and had absconded twice - the second time was the last they'd heard of her. Still haven't found out what happened to her.

Olde Crone Holden
11-06-08, 23:12

Try to look at it this way....death in the workhouse infirmary was probably preferable to slowly dying at home without any care or attention.

At least in the workhouse they got basic nursing care and food and someone with them when they died.