The ELWELL & CLARKE families


Ann Shirley "Yorkie" Swales, is an inhabitant of South Yorkshire, but is descended from good Black Country stock. Her most recent ancestor from the Sedgley area was grandmother Mary Elizabeth CLARKE from Woodsetton. For more details see Yorkie's website

This picture is of Joseph and Maria ELWELL.  Which one is Joseph I am not too sure but both men look like ELWELLs.  The two children I don't know either but they may be their grandchildren.

The 1881 census of Sedgley gives their address at that date as 2 Vale Street.   Joseph is aged 32 making him born 1849 which would make him a likely candidate to be my great great grandfather William ELWELL's nephew, the son of Samuel ELWELL who married Elizabeth ROBINSON who lived at 94 Hermit Row in 1851 and at 16 Windmill Street, Ruiton in 1870.

In 1878 Joseph lived in Hill Street, Ruiton (Occupation: Bricklayer) where his daughter Winifred (see next photo) was born on the 30th October. (He also had two other daughters named Alice and Martha)


This one is of my great grandfather WILLIAM HARPER CLARKE and his family.

On the left is Abraham CLARKE brother of my grandmother Mary Elizabeth CLARKE and son of William's first wife Phoebe ROOKER.   Apparently Uncle Abe was a bit of a lad and sowed a few wild oats before getting married.  Unfortunately he, his wife and all his daughters died during World War II from T.B.

Next is Winifred CLARKE nee ELWELL with her daughter Margaret Lydia CLARKE on her knee.  Between her and my great grandfather William HARPER CLARKE is their son Joseph CLARKE who was a bare knuckle fighter and good at it or so I am told.   Note the pansy in great grandfather's button hole.  He was a very keen gardener and I believe the photograph was taken at the back of the house they finished their days in - No. 9 Pool Street, Woodsetton.   It's still there slap bang in the middle of a terraced row.   A couple of years ago I went and stood on the opposite side of the road trying to pluck up courage to knock at the door and ask if I could go into the back garden.  But I didn't.  That back garden was one of my few memories of Pool Street as a child.


This picture is of St. Chads and All Saints Roman Catholic School in Sedgley.  It was taken during the First World War  and my great aunt Margaret Lydia Clarke is ringed (see enlargement above.) 

Aunt Marge as we always called her was the daughter of William HARPER CLARKE of Woodsetton and Winifred ELWELL (daughter of Joseph ELWELL and Maria TOMLINSON).



Search the whole Sedgley site