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  • Writer's pictureJessica Feinstein

Susan Davis of Imber, silk-spinner

Susan Davis was Ari’s 4x great-grandmother. She was born in about 1832 in the now-deserted village of Imber on Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire.


The story of the village is told on this website, which includes photos of the people who lived there.

This is Susan’s baptism record from 26 Feb 1837:

susan davis bap

(Source: Wiltshire, England, Church of England Births and Baptisms, 1813–1916 [database on-line].)

Her sister Charlotte, also “B.B” (base-born, or illegitimate), was baptised on the same day.

In the 1841 census the three of them are living in Marsh Alley, Warminster. In 1851 Susan and her mother are in nearby Chapel Street, and Susan (now 19) is listed as a silk-spinner. (Silk spinning was one of Warminster’s major industries.) The following year Susan married, and children Sidney, Henry, Harriet and Albert quickly followed.

A married daughter, Emily, born in 1864, is living with them in 1891. (Emily married naval stoker Frank Whatley on 22 Jul 1890 and was widowed in 1914 when his ship, HMS Aboukir, was sunk by a German submarine in the North Sea.)

The last census for Susan shows her in 1901, living at 41 Brook Street in Warminster at the age of 70. She died two years later and was buried at Christ Church.

susan davis bur

(Source: Wiltshire, England, Church of England Deaths and Burials, 1813-1916 [database on-line].)

Four years later, Susan’s husband married again at the age of 75 but he will have his own page to tell his story!

Ari, this shows how you are related to Susan:

Screen Shot 2017-10-21 at 09.24.07
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