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The Hunt for Grandfathers lost brothers continues!
When Great Grandfather Thomas Roberts took off to Llanystumdwy from Llanyblodwel around the early 1880`s he left some of the family behind or to put it another way, three of the sons didn`t go with them for some reason unknown to me.
At the 1881 census the family are still at Abertanat cottage on the farm of Thomas`s sister Mary Hannah Whitfield and the only one missing is Hannah Maria who isn`t born yet.
Great Grandfather and family at 1881


So by 1891 this is the picture below
Great Grandfather Thomas and family in 1891

Which means that Thomas born 1868 and aged 23 at 1891, Edward born 1874 and aged 17 at 1891 and James born 1876 and aged 15 at 1891 are all missing and presumably have gone their separate ways. The search for these three lads began for me about six years ago and as I only had the census of 1891 to help me I struggled to find any of them. By a sheer stroke of luck whilst searching the census I came across a Thomas W Roberts as a florist in Dartford, Kent and almost dismissed it as totally wrong. But I decided to have my 10p`s worth and have a look and discovered that he was of the right age and born Oswestry and married to one Annie from Lewisham and then the bonus came for there was his brother James working for him.
THomas and James in Dartford

What a find this was for me and soon I was able to obtain the marriage certificate for Thomas and Annie and also the birth certificate for the baby Nora. They were married in Lewisham on the thirty first of March 1889, her maiden name was Nora Annie Williams, her father was George Williams a commercial traveller and Thomas`s occupation was Gardener. They were married in a Congregational chapel in Blackheath.
At 1891 they had a shop in West Street, Dartford and by now he was calling himself a florist - (this flower thing must be in the blood!). In between census`s there`s not much to relate but by 1901 they have moved to 19, Spital Street, Dartford and he is calling himself a Florist and Seedsman and the family has increased to Nora Annie age 11, Etty age 9, George Thomas age 6, Jack age 6 and William age 5.

Thomas Roberts and family in 1901
BUT - No James the brother so it meant another search was on and eventually I found him on the 1901 census quite a long way off in Swansea. He was a boarder at the house of who appears to be a workmate. His occupation is that of Railway porter.

James Roberts as a boarder in Swansea 1901

I have been unable to find out any more about James and have absolutely no idea where he went to from there. There are many many ways and means of carrying out a person search and particularly more so now with the internet being so family history orientated these days, but as yet I have had no luck in finding him.

The same may be said of Edward born 1874. I had what I thought was a good lead on him a few years ago when a person of same age and same birthplace was to be found as an Innkeeper in Bala. We went to the village to find out more and also to the record office in Dolgelly and that was when my heart dropped because his father was listed as Thomas Roberts - shoemaker, so that was the end of that search!
Lets get back to the eldest brother Thomas.
I followed him up to 1905 where he was listed in a The High Street in Dartford in the 50`s trade directory as a Master Florist with his shop still at 19, Spital Street, Dartford but in later trade directories there was no mention of him so I presumed that the family had moved on.

Other family history got in the way of this particular search until quite recently (2006) and following a search through a website which lists all the births, marriages, and deaths from registration time in 1837 through to 1984 I discovered that a Nora A Roberts aged 80 had died in Dartford so I took a chance on it being the correct one and sent off for the death certificate and sure enough it was correct and the details turned out to be just a little confusing as she had died at 21, Crook Log, Bexley, Dartford, informant Thomas William Roberts who`s address was 24, The Brent, Bexley,Dartford. I must presume that Nora Annie had died suddenly whilst away from home and maybe in a friend or relatives house.
The memrial chapel outside the Watling Street cemetery, DartfordFrom here I contacted the various Dartford authorities such as the archives, cemeteries department etc and finally got the answer that I wanted and that was that Nora Annie Roberts was buried in grave number 4856, Watling Street cemetery in Bexley Heath, Dartford. So now all I needed to find out was whether there were others buried in the same spot and very soon received the disappointing news that Nora Annie was on her own and the owner of the grave was Thomas William Roberts. So maybe Thomas in his later years went to live outside Dartford with a son or daughter and that he was buried wherever he went to which means that I will need more than a little luck to find him again! The hunt for Thomas, James, and the descendants of them continues but for the meantime I will end this chapter.

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Stop Press news about Grandfathers nephew George Thomas Roberts b 1894

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