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John Tompkins “of Ambrosden”

Ambrosden Church

Until we find the marriage of John and Mary, the following is conjecture, but 90% likely! His age as given at burial would fit the John Tompkins who was born in Arncott (in Bucks) or Blackthorne (across the River Ray in Oxfordshire) in 1763 and was baptised on 9th January 1763 at Ambrosden Church.

John was the only son of Joseph Tomkins (age unknown) of Arncott and the then 21 year old Anne Hopcraft, also of Arncott.

When Joseph married Anne on 11th October 1760 at Ambrosden she was still a minor. Joseph and Anne signed the register with crosses The witnesses at the wedding were John Ellitt and Edwin Winslow.

Childhood Relatives

Joseph’s parents (John’s paternal grandparents) and any siblings and their children (possible aunts and uncles and cousins for John) are not recorded. Anne’s parents (John’s maternal grandparents) were John and Catherine Hopcraft. Anne had two sisters: John’s Aunt Catherine would have been 22 when he was born and his Aunt Sarah would have been 14. Catherine and Sarah’s possible marriages, dates of death or children (further possible cousins for John) are not recorded on the tree

John had an older sister Mary, born 20 September 1761 who died 14 October 1761 and a younger sister, Elizabeth, born in 5 October 1766 (both at Arncott). The dates of Elizabeth’s possible marriage and children and death are not recorded.

John’s mother Anne died at Arncott when she was 38. She was buried at Ambrosden on 25 August 1770. John would have been 7 and his sister Elizabeth 4 (if still alive).

His father remarried the following year on 29 January 1771 to Elizabeth King at Ambrosden Church. The witnesses were Jono King and Henry King (the latter witnessed other marriages so possibly not a relative).

John’s grandfather John Hopcraft died in 1771 and was buried on 25th April at Ambrosden.

In 1772 Joseph and Elizabeth had the first of John’s four half-brothers and sisters (recorded as Tomkins). Sarah was baptised at Ambrosden on 29 March 1772.

John’s grandmother Catherine Hopcraft died in 1773 when John Junior was 10.

In 1774 Joseph and Elizabeth had John’s first half-brother Thomas. However, having been baptised on 22 October at Ambrosden, he died, and was buried 9 days later. In 1776 another half-brother, also Thomas, was born and baptised on 21st January at Ambrosden. This second Thomas Tomkins survived only until 1782 (when John would have been 19) and was buried on 30 October. A second half-sister, Mary, was baptised on 21 September 1778 at Ambrosden.

In 1799, when John was 36, his half-sister Mary (then aged 21) married William Newton Purcell Beaill (!) at Ambrosden Church on 5 August. The witnesses were James Cross and John Shouller (the latter was a regular witness).

Later that year John’s father died at Arncott and was buried on 11 November 1799 at Ambrosden.

Descendants of Joseph and Anne Tomkins


In the Hearth Tax 1662 Official Returns for Blackthorn, there are two entries for Tompkins: William Tompkins, John Tompkins 2.

In the Hearth Tax 1662 Petty Constables Returns for Noke: Widow Tomkins

Source: The 1662 Hearth Tax Returns for Ploughley Hundred area in Oxfordshire

Kathleen Mary “Molly” Tompkins

Kathleen Mary “Molly” Tompkins

From Buckinghamshire to Essex via Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire.The Tompkins were tenant farmers in Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Essex.The Gilletts and Godfrees and Baylis families were farming in Gloucestershire.Kathleen Mary “Molly” Tompkins (left), was the...

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John Tompkins, grandfather of Molly and Leigh de Fraine

John's first wife, Sarah Jane Godfree, was baptised on 20 May 1829 in Great Rissington. In 1841, she was with her grandparents George and Mary Godfree and in 1851, she was with her maternal aunt, Jane Smith, in Bourton on the Water. She married John Tompkins of...

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John Tompkins of Oddington

John Tompkins, great x2 grandfather of Molly Tompkins, presumably married Mary, but we have yet to find the marriage. In 1791 they had their first son, William, at Swanborne in north Buckinghamshire. The following year they had a daughter called Anne and in 1794,...

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Auctioneer of Reading

Robert Tompkins, a resident of Reading, Berkshire, was the second son of Robert Tompkins and Ann Osborn and seemed to have  led an interesting life. While browsing through some 19th Century newspapers recently, looking for a different surname entirely, I vaguely...

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Schooldays

The de Fraine, Tompkins and Gillett families often sent both their sons and daughters away from home for a few years of education, and I have several times spotted familiar surnames on lists of pupils, which when I have tracked them through other census returns and through birth registrations have turned out to be related to the name I was originally looking for.

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