Ruth Brelsford, Primitive Methodist?

One of Ari’s 5x great-grandmothers was Ruth Brelsford, born in about 1824 in Middleton by Wirksworth, Derbyshire. Her father was William, a lead miner, and her mother was Mary Flint. She was their fifth child and first daughter.

I haven’t found a baptism record, so the first time we see her is in the 1841 census, aged 15, living with her parents and siblings in Hillside, Middleton.

On 27 February 1953 she married a hatter called John Wheeldon at St Mary’s in Wirksworth.

Marriage certificate, Derbyshire, England, Church of England Marriages and Banns, 1754-1932 on Ancestry


By 1851 Ruth and John had three children, William, Joseph, and John. They were living at Moorside, Cromford.

Ruth’s widowed mother-in-law, Alice, was living with them.

1861 shows Ruth and John aged 37, with children John (12; working in a cotton factory), Samuel (9), Hannah (8), Mary (5) and Alice (2). They then moved to Holloway, Crich, where they can be seen in 1871. By now daughter Alice was 12 and also working in the mill, and Ruth had had two more daughters, Kezia (9) and Sarah Ann (5), both at school.

In 1881 they are in the same place and a visitor – James Hurd from Frome in Somerset – is staying with them. He was a Primitive Methodist Minister (see this page for his picture and biography).

Derby Daily Telegraph, 6 July 1882 from Findmypast


On former Scarthin Primitive Methodist Chapel, Cromford


Ruth’s husband John died a few months after the 1881 census, and in 1891 we can see her as the head of the household, with three daughters at home.

1891 England census, Ancestry.


In 1901 Ruth was 77, living at Leashaw Rd, Dethick. Her daughter Kezia was still at home and working as a charwoman (she would marry the following year). Sarah Ann was also still single, working as a merino hosiery machinist. And Kezia’s daughter Sarah, born in 1895, was also living with them.

And finally we see Ruth, aged 87 in 1911, living with Kezia and her husband Andrew Lee, a hosiery worker, at Chapel House, Lea, Matlock Bath. She was described as an Old Age Pensioner.

Ruth died in the summer of the following year, 1912.

Ari, this is how you are related to Ruth:

#Crich #Brelsford #Holloway #Cromford #PrimitiveMethodist #Wheeldon #MatlockBath #Dethick #MiddletonbyWirksworth #Flint #Lea

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I started my blog when my grandson Ari was born in Feb 2017. His birth gave me an opportunity to focus on part of what has become an unmanageably large family tree, looking again at all the records I

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