WILCOCK OF STANNINGLEY
Sarah Wilcock, wife of Joseph
Sowden, is shown by census returns to have been born at Stanningley
about 1805. A key document for identifying her origins is the will of Samuel
Wilcock of Dewsbury, dated 27 November 1861 and proved on 4 September 1867.
Samuel leaves legacies to “my Nephews and Nieces hereinafter mentioned namely
To George Carter of Sheffield Stone Mason Mary the wife of William Wilcock of Stanningley near Leeds Slubber Joshua Wilcock of Rickardshaw in the township of Pudsey Innkeeper David
Wilcock of Humanbee near Burlington Farmer Ann the
wife of the said James Greenwood of New Wortley near Leeds aforesaid William
Sowden of Dewsbury aforesaid Weaver John Sowden Son of Joseph Sowden New
Wortley near Leeds aforesaid”. An investigation of these individuals indicated
that as well as having a brother Samuel born at Stanningley
about 1796 (the testator), Sarah (Wilcock) Sowden had a brother John Wilcock
(father of Joshua and David) and a sister Hannah Wilcock who married William
Sowden in 1804 and then George Carter in 1810.
The records of Pudsey old
Independent (Congregational) chapel show the birth in 1796 of Samuel Wilcock,
son of John and Hannah of Stanningley, and the birth
in 1804 of Sarah Wilcock, daughter of John and Hannah, as well as that of John
Wilcock, son of John and Hannah of Stanningley, in
1793. It is therefore apparent that Sarah (Wilcock) Sowden was a daughter of
John and Hannah.
Two possible marriages for
John and Hannah are John Wilcock and Hannah Raynor at Calverley on 16 May 1785,
and John Wilcock and Hannah Hargreave at Calverley on 31 December 1787.
The latter is less than a week before the birth of Samuel Wilcock as recorded
in the Pudsey chapel registers. Whilst a marriage so shortly before the birth
of a child is by no means unprecedented, in this case it seems that Samuel was
probably not the first child as the ages given for Hannah (Wilcock) (Sowden)
Carter suggest that she was born about 1785. Therefore the 1785 marriage is
perhaps more promising. It may be relevant that a John Rayner was one of the
witnesses to the marriage of Benjamin Wilcock and Martha Smith.
It is presumed in the account
below that there was only one couple named John and Hannah Wilcock who were
having children registered at the Pudsey chapel in the 1780s, 1790s and 1800s,
although as noted above, Hannah (ca 1785-1863), John (b 1793), Samuel
(1796-1867) and Sarah (1804-1883) can be shown to be siblings, and one of the
witnesses at John’s marriage was a Benjamin Wilcock, which lends some support
to Benjamin’s inclusion in the same family.
John Wilcock, husband of
Hannah, may be the one of that name buried at the Pudsey chapel on 20 March
1815 aged fifty-four, but it is not clear as there was also a John Wilcock
married to an Elizabeth recorded in the registers in the same period.
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JOHN WILCOCK of Stanningley,
Yorkshire, clothier, married HANNAH.
Children of John and Hannah Wilcock:
iv GEORGE WILCOCK.
viii WILLIAM WILCOCK, b 27 Jan 1802.
 Another John and Hannah Wilcock couple is suggested by the baptism entry of a Susanna Wilcock in the Batley parish registers on 2 Jul 1786, which indicates that her parents were John and Hannah (Smith) Wilcock of Gildersome.
 1851 census returns, Pudsey (National Archives, HO 107/2313, fol. 531).
 Grant of probate.
 Will of Samuel Wilcock. They may be the Samuel Wilcock and Mary Ward married on 11 Apr 1836 at Huddersfield.
 Death certificate.