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CATHARINE WALSH JONES

Catharine Walsh Jones is one of the shadowy figures from the tree and yet I would love to find out more about her. There is so little information about her and yet by patiently looking at all of the details on various certificates, you can deduce certain information.

She was born in Halstead, Essex in the year of 1830. We don't know if Walsh Jones is a maiden name or if she was married previously.


Pictured above is a painting of Halstead, Essex - completed in approx 1830

I don't know for sure, if she actually married Robert Halford Abbott or not. The only hint that they may have been married is the fact that when he remarried, his status was put as widower. This may have just been his opinion based on a common law status. In those days no proof needed to be provided for the statements made on official BMD certificates.

She was known to the family as Kate. The first time she appears on a census result that I can find is in 1860. She along with Robert Halford Abbott were lodging at Holborne, apparently with performers of a travelling circus or fair. Her occupation was listed as clairvoyant. At that time she already had five children but they only had the baby with them. So far, I can't see where any of the other children were.

She couldn't read or write but by the fact that she was in the circus indicates an outgoing personality.

She and Robert travelled the west of the country through to the midlands but in 1863 they had made their way to Newport, Isle of Wight.

In August of 1863 she lost two of her little daughters (Alice aged 2 and a half and Julia aged 4 and a half) within days of each other, both from croup. She was also managing to cope with a four month old baby.

Robert, her husband was the proprietor of the Grapes Inn by 1870. Kate would have helped him, you would think in these tasks, perhaps as a barmaid.

On the 16th June 1872 she and Robert lost another little daughter - 3 year old Julia -to whooping cough.

Kate herself, passed away about two weeks later from phlebitis. Her death certificate states that she had been ill for the past 18 months.

View Catharine's family group on the tree