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James Morris and Catherine Huxley

HUSBAND:
[James MORRIS. [PC M1].
Born (about 1724-S3)(in 1737-S9,S10), of Bunbury, Cheshire, England.

He has in the past been said by various researchers to be named John (S15), but the records at England, Select Cheshire Bishop's Transcripts, 1598-1900 (S12), with the birth of the children in Bunbury, makes it clear that he is named James. There was a John Morris who was christened on 21 April 1737 at Bunbury, Cheshire, England. (Bunbury England Parish Register 1700-1800)(S5,S6). [This is usually taken to be the correct one, but the problem with this record is that our ancestor is named James, not John]. The christening of children in Bunbury makes it clear that their father's name is James. (S12).

It is not clear who his parents were. Possible parents have been said to be:
Son of James Morrie and Elizabeth Rawlinson. (S3).
Son of John Morris and Kitty Hoskins. (S8).
Son of Richard Morris and Mary Owen. (S5,S9). The problem with this is that Richard and Mary were married on 19 September 1748 in Bunbury. If James and Catherine were married in 1749, this makes it an impossibility.

James Morris married Catherine Huxley on 8 October 1749 at Acton by Nantwich, Cheshire, England. (S2,S3,S11,S12,S15). Morris Miles research notes (S15) says that though the marriage was made in Acton, both James and Catherine were of Bunbury. Their children were born in Bunbury, but they were living in Peckforton. This is because there was no parish church in Peckforton.

During the time of James and Catherine's childbearing years, there are a number of children born in Bunbury, as found in the England, Select Cheshire Bishop's Transcripts, 1598-1900. (S12). They include:
Jonathan Morris. (1751-1817).
Catherine Morris. (1754-?).
Elizabeth Morris. (1757-1778).
James Morris (1761-1816).
Joseph Morris. (1763-?).
James Morris. (1765-?).
Joseph Morris. (1765-?) .
Daniel Morris. (1768-1774).
John Morris. (1770-?)
Abraham Morrey (1775-?).
Mary Morris. (?-1776).

The problem is that this source only lists the name of the father, and not the mother. If James and Catherine were the only couple having children in Bunbury at this time the logical assumption would be that these were all their children. However, there was another father named James Morris in Bunbury during part of this time. According to the same source (S12), there was a James Morris in Bunbury who married Elizabeth Ratliff on 25 April 1762 in Bunbury. What this means is that children born in Bunbury before 1762 are almost certainly the children of James and Catherine, but children born in about 1763 and later could belong to either James and Catherine or James and Elizabeth. I list below all these children, pending further information, but only Jonathan, Catherine, Elizabeth and James (the James born in 1761, can with pretty good certainty be considered the children of James and Catherine. The others could belong to either parents.

James was said to have been buried on 3 May 1798 in Burwardsley, Cheshire, England (S3), but this same date is given for Catherine. Obviously further research on their death date is needed.

WIFE:
Catherine HUXLEY. (Hupley-S17). [PC M1].

There are two main records for the Catherine Huxley thought to be our ancestor:

One is U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 (S14), which say that James was born in 1737 and Catherine was born in 1739. The problem is that these dates would make James age 12 at the time of their marriage, and Catherine age 10 at the time of their marriage. Keep in mind that this record, the U.S. International Marriage Records, is a compilation of family history records from various sources, and is not a primary record.

The other, which is a primary record, is England, Cheshire Parish Registers, 1538-2000. (GS Film Number 2147020, Digital Folder Number 004019086, Image Number 00173. https://familysearch.org:/MM9.1.1/F749-LBZ), which says that James Morris and Catherine Huxley were married on 8 October 1749 at Acton (near Nantwich), Cheshire, England. (S2,S3,S11,S12).

There is a Catherine Huxley, daughter of John Huxley who was christened on 25 June 1721 at Christeleton, Cheshire, England. (S13). There is no indication that this may be the correct Catherine. This is probably too early to be correct, and it is noted that Christeleton is a suburb of Chester. While not impossible, the distance also makes me question that this would be the correct record for our ancestor.

There was a Catherine Huxley, daughter of William Huxley, who was christened on 5 January 1678 at Bunbury, Cheshire, England. [SOURCE: England, Select Cheshire Bishop's Transcripts, 1598-1900. Ancestry.com. FHL Film Number: 1655425.]. This is too early to be our ancestor, but I include it here to show that there were Huxley families in Bunbury.

We find several Huxley families in Bunbury during the time that Catherine could have been born there. They include:
James Huxley.
Richard Huxley.
Moses Huxley.
George Huxley.

Unfortunately, so far at least, I have not found a daughter Catherine among them in the records. She has been thought to be the daughter of Joseph HUXLEY [F514]. (S2), primarily because of the marriage in Acton. Further research needs to be made to find convincing evidence of her birth.

Catherine Huxley married James Morris on 8 October 1749 at Acton by Nantwich, Cheshire, England. (S2,S3,S11,S12,S15).

Catherine was buried on 5 November 1775 in Bunbury, Cheshire, England. (S3,S12)(FHL Film Number 1655425). Her death is recorded in the Bunbury Parish records, but a review of the microfilm (1655425) clearly shows that Catherine and James were of Peckforton. Since son Abraham was christened in December of that year, it is very possible that Catherine died from complications due to childbirth.

There is a Catherine who died on 3 May 1798 in Bunbury, Cheshire, England. Many sources (S2,S5,S10) have assumed that 1798 is the correct date because it occurred in Bunbury, but James and his family were living in Peckforton.

CHILDREN of James MORRIS and Catherine HUXLEY:


There are other children who are said to be children of James and Catherine, but the records do not verify that they are. These include:
1. Daniel Morris. Christened on 10 April 1768 at Bunbury, Cheshire, England. (S12). The microfilm (FHL Film Number 1655425) shows that Daniel and his father James were of Beeston. He was buried on 9 April 1774 at (Beeston-S3)(Bunbury-S12), Cheshire, England.
2. John Morris. (Born-S3)(Christened-S12) on 17 June 1770 at Beeston, Cheshire, England. He is not shown to be the son of James of Peckforton.
3. Joseph Morris. (Born-S3)(Christened-S5,S12) on (16-S5,S12)(18-S3) January 1763 at Bunbury, Cheshire, England. The microfilm (FHL Film Number 1655425) shows that Joseph and his father James were of Beeston. The source [Cheshire Parish Register Project. cgi.csc.liv.ac.uk] also shows that Joseph Morris was christened on 16 January 1763 in the Bunbury Parish, Cheshire, England; but his family was residing at Beeston.
4. James Morris was christened on 17 November 1765 at Bunbury, Cheshire, England . The microfilm (FHL Film Number 1655425) shows that James and his father James were of Beeston.
5. Elizabeth Morris. She was christened on 20 December 1757 in Bunbury, Cheshire, England. (S5,S12). The microfilm (FHL Film Number 1655425) shows that Elizabeth was christened by the vicar of Burwardsley. Elizabeth died on 21 May 1778 at Bunbury, Cheshire, England. (S12).
6.. Mary Morris. She was buried on 3 June 1776 at Bunbury, Cheshire, England. (S12). The microfilm (FHL Film Number 1655425) shows that Mary was of Cholmondley.

SOURCES: