William Miles and Hannah May

William Miles, senior, was born in 1769 (according to his age at burial) at Fetcham in Surrey, England.

St Marys Fetcham Surrey

A William Mills was baptised  on 9 April 1769 at St Marys, Fetcham, to parents John and Elisabeth Mills.

At the age of 22, William Miles married Hannah May, at St Nicholas, Thames Ditton, 8 miles from Fetcham on 12 December 1791 by banns.

Both parties were illiterate and made their mark ‘x’. The witnesses were Alice Smith and Jasper Hill. It appears Hannah was pregnant when they married.

Hannah May was born in 1770, and her parentage is unknown, although her marriage register entry does say she was of the parish of St Nicholas, Thames Ditton.

It appears several of her possible siblings were also married in Thames Ditton around the same time – Mary in 1786, John in 1789, Benjamin in 1795, and a Bridget May burial in 1781.

William and Hannah had two children –

  1. William b 1792 Stokes D’abernon d 1866 Great Bookham. Married Charlotte Skilton. 10 children.
  2. James b 1794 Fetcham, d 1836 Fetcham aged 42 years.
  3. Hannah b 1796 Great Bookham, d 1867 Fetcham. Marr James Friday 1817. 8 children.
  4. Sarah b 1813 Fetcham, d 1891 Ewell.  Married George Norman 1846.

After their marriage in Thames Ditton in 1791, the couple lived at Stokes D’abernon where their first child William was born and baptised.

St Marys Stoke D’Abernon Surrey

The church is one of the oldest churches in Surrey. It was built in the 7th or 8th century AD re-using a large number of Roman bricks, probably from a nearby Roman building.

The village is in the Oxshot hamlet in the Epsom district of Surrey and lies on the river Mole, 3 miles from the larger town of Leatherhead. In 1870 it had a population of 368 in 69 houses.

Two years later they were living at Fetcham and William senior, was working as a agricultural labourer on the surrounding farms.

The next two children James and Hannah were both baptised at St Lawrence, Effingham, and then their last child Sarah was baptised at Fetcham in 1813.

St Marys Fetcham graveyard

William’s wife Hannah died in February 1840 in Fetcham, aged 70 years, and was buried at St Mary’s Fetcham on 19 February 1840.

In the 1841 census William senior was living in Fetcham, Surrey by himself, aged 75, a worker and was still working as an agricultural labourer.

William died in June 1841 aged 73 and was buried on 23 June 1841.