last updated 27 June 2015


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(Madras & England 1700s to early 1900s)




Earlier Middlecoat ancestors in Tregony & Bodmin, Cornwall



on the previous page







and on this page - the West Country, Dublin, 1800s British India









Cornwall - Tregony, Falmouth & Bodmin 1600 - 1840



North Devon & India - Webbers, Incledons, Fanes, Despensers, Mildmays



Dublin then Madras - Burtons






Recent Ancestors (with photos)        census page links        all bmd links



Ancestors of Lt Col John Adolphus and Georgiana ("Gem") Burton


An overview chart linking five generations of Burtons, Middlecoats, Lockes & Hamptons in the 1700s / 1800s in British India.



The direct (*) ancestor line back to Charles Hampton (early 1700s): 


- Adrian Fletcher* (1943 -    )

- Col Michael Fletcher* (1918 - 2007 (89)) (British Army) and Peggy Fletcher (Sproule) (1917 - 2005 (88))

- Ethel Fletcher* (Burton) (1890 - 1968 (78)) (c Madras) and Dr Frank Rex ("Jimmy") Fletcher (1890 - 1974 (84))

- "Gem" Burton (Middlecoat)* (1871 - 1953 (82)) and Lt Col John Adolphus Burton (1854 - 1924 (69)) (Indian Medical Service)

- Col Francis Middlecoat* (1839 - 1922 (83)) (Madras Army) and Mary Henrietta Locke (1850 - 1928 (78))

- Susannah Palmer Middlecoat (Hampton)* (1808 - 1870 (61)) and Capt George Middlecoat (1802 - 1845 (43)) (Madras Artillery)

- Capt James Hampton* (1784 - 1821 (drowned) (37)) (Madras Army) (brother-in-law of John Palmer) and Mrs Mary Forster (1786 - 1855 (69))

- Col Samuel Hampton* (1735 - 1786 (51)) (Bengal Army Officer) and Margaret Hick (1748 - 1784 (36))

- Charles Hampton* (EICo Bengal) and Martha Vesey, Adrian's 6xGreat Grandparents



1752 - New Year's Day moves to January 1st


New Year's Day for 1752 in England was reset to January 1st - up until this time it had been on March 25th.  So there was no January 1 - March 24 1751 (aka 1751/52) !  The first three months of years before this are sometimes shown with two year numbers - eg Jan 1550/51 - for clarity.  Amongst other things, zodiac versed readers will see that the concept of a two or three headed "Janus" looking back on the old year and forward to the new in the month of January was looking at life through an agricultural rather than calendar lens.


Also, in order to effect the change to the Gregorian Calendar, the English days September 2 - 14 1752 were disappeared - Nick Middlecoat jnr  (b August 1752) damn nearly arrived on earth in a calendrical black hole !


More about this



The Lock(e)s



Recapping the direct (*) ancestor line back to Thomas lock, a London Mercer, who died in 1507. 


- Adrian Fletcher* (1943 -    )

- Col Michael Fletcher* (1918 - 2007 (89)) (British Army) and Peggy Fletcher (Sproule) (1917 - 2005 (88))

- Ethel Fletcher* (Burton) (1890 - 1968 (78)) (c Madras) and Dr Frank Rex ("Jimmy") Fletcher (1890 - 1974 (84))

- "Gem" Burton (Middlecoat)* (1871 - 1953 (82)) and Lt Col John Adolphus Burton (1854 - 1924 (69)) (Indian Medical Service)

- Mary Henrietta Locke* (1850 - 1928 (78)) and Col Francis Middlecoat (1839 - 1922 (83)) (Madras Army)

- Samuel Richard Locke* and Charlotte Jane Sophia Nosky Locke (Jansen / Rehling)

- Adrian's 4x Great Grandparents - Capt Thomas Locke* (Madras Army) and Indiana Laura Locke (Shaw - second of 3 wives)

- Thomas Locke Snr* and Elizabeth Locke (Lang)

- Thomas Locke Snr Snr* (Taunton Maltster) and Amey Locke (Warren)

- Allen Lock* and Susanna Lock (Elworthy)

- Allen Lock Snr* and Rebecca Lock (Creed)

- Lewis Locke* and his 4th wife who may have been Catherine Lock (Somerset)

- Christopher Lock of Pilrow* and ? (10x Grt Grandparents)

- Matthew Lock* and Eleanor Lock (  )

- Michael Lock* and Jane Lock (Wilkinson)

- Sir William Lock* and Catherine Lock (Cooke)

- Thomas Lock* and Joan Lock (Wilcock)






The nave of St Mary Magdalene, Taunton - the church of Angels (and many Lockes).



"Lewis Locke (1606 - 1692 (86)), baptized 13th July 1606, was buried at Taunton Saint Mary Magdalene on March 27, 1692 .  He had 4 wives and  thirty-five children, most of whom lived to be men and women.  What is more remarkable, his eldest son John, born 1625, was fifty-nine years of age, when his youngest son Christopher was born at Taunton, anno 1684. It is reported in the family that John had a great-grandson as old as his younger brother; which is, perhaps, the chief reason why this branch of the family cannot truly ascertain their respective degrees of kindred. It is, however, generally believed, that all the Lockes of Somersetshire and Devonshire derive themselves from this Lewis


but whether so or not, we know that Allen (snr), one of the younger sons by the last wife, was father of


another Allen (jnr) was father of


[Allen Locke (jnr) m Susanna Elworthy in St Mary Magdalene, Taunton, on 20 November 1730]


the present Mr. Thomas Locke (snr snr) of Taunton, Maltster, who has six sons, three of whom are settled in London and three in Taunton, the youngest being a Master of Arts of the University of Oxford, also one daughter not yet married." 


[Thos Lock Snr Snr, a Taunton Maltster, and his wife Amey Warren, were married in St Mary Magdalene, Taunton on 1 June 1757.  They had 6 sons and 1 daughter].


Extract from article about the Locke family in England in “The Gentleman’s Magazine” (1792 - Vol 62, Part 2, page 798)



Lewis Lock was christened in July 1606.




"Spaxton weaver" bench end and some corbel fun outside


His first bride was Bridget Coombe, and they married in the beautiful full-of-light Quantock Hills (Somerset) church of St Margaret, Spaxton, on 20 January 1620/21.  Lewis was to enjoy 4 wives in all before his death in March 1692 at the age of 85.  35 children emerged from these marriages, with our ancestor Allen snr coming from marriage number 4 (mother's name not known). 


7 March 1692 - Allen Locke Snr



marries Rebecca Creed in St Mary Magdalene, Taunton. 


20 November 1730 - Allen Lock Jnr


marries Susanna Elworthy in St Mary Magdalene, Taunton.  They have at least three children - Allen Jnr jnr (1731), Thomas Snr Snr (1733), William (1736)


23 May 1733 - Thomas Locke Snr Snr



is christened in St Mary Magdalene, Taunton. 


1 June 1757 - Thomas Locke Snr Snr


marries Amey Warren of nearby Bishops Lydeard in St Mary Magdalene, Taunton.  They have six sons and a daughter, mostly christened in  St Mary Magdalene, Taunton.  Thomas Snr (1750), William (1762), Richard (1763), James & John (1766), Rev Dr Samuel (1768) and a daughter. 


Thomas Locke Snr is christened in St Mary Magdalene, Taunton on 19 February 1760.


27 March 1785 - Thomas Locke Snr marries




Original Register



Elizabeth Lang in St Luke, Old Street, Finsbury (London) by Banns.  Witnesses Edward Dobson and nnn Aaron Harris.


16 March 1788 - Thomas Locke Jnr christened




in St Anne's Soho, London - his parents are Thomas Snr and Elizabeth Locke (Lang) and there are also IGI records for the births / baptisms of siblings Amey (1786), Elizabeth (1790) and Jno (John) (1793).  The children seem to have stopped a bit early for those days - possibly Elizabeth died.   Thomas Snr was still around to sign off Thomas jnr's birth record confirmation in 1807.




10 July 1803 - Indiana Laura Shaw



Christened at age one in Vepery (Madras) by Missionary Rev Gericke.  She will witness Thomas' first marriage and later become his second wife.  As shown in the records, her parents (to be Adrian's 5xGrts) were John and Margaret Shaw.  In 1822 John is described as "the late J Shaw of the Bengal Establishment" - but we have yet to track him down.  Indiana (b1802) had at least three siblings whose Christenings also took place in Vepery, Madras - Henrietta (b1801), Margaret (b1803) and Edmond (b 1804).  There may of course have been others. 



1806/7 - Thomas Locke (18) Jnr applies




to be a cadet in the Bombay Army, then changes his preference to Madras.  The process involves a rather complicated  gift from his uncle the Rev Dr Samuel Locke of Farnham School, as explained in the House of Commons Hansard record



ie Lady Lumm sold for 200 shillings her (Madras?) cadet nomination right, using Thomas Watson as a commission agent, to Rev Dr Locke, which then got swapped for one of James Patterson's Bombay Army nominations ..... no, that doesn't work ..... whatever, Team Ciaofamiglia, unused to English patronage market manipulations, got lost between who was buying and selling what and clipping the ticket on the way, and gave up ...


This did, however, via the Church of England Clergy Data-Base (Winchester Diocese) and the Oxford Graduates' list, lead us to establish that Samuel & Thomas Locke snr's father was yet another Thomas (Locke), Gentleman of Taunton (Somerset).  He had six sons and a daughter - mostly christened in Saint Mary Magdalene, Taunton, between 1760 and 1770.  We have since then uncovered a couple of earlier Locke marriages in St Mary Magdalene, Taunton - these are shown earlier.


Indeed, it is possible the Locke line can be traced back to Henry VIII days, when a London City mercer, Sir William Lock, had nice lines in cloths of gold and silver.  Sir William was buried in St Mary le Bow in Cheapside in 1550.  As London grew bigger, it was said that to be a cockney you had to be born within earshot of the bells of Bow.


Amongst other things the Rev Doctor, graduate of Wadham College, Oxford, was Chaplain to the Duke of Kent - what were the connective implications of that?




Despite all this Thomas' first go at Madras military life did not work out, which we know because in  .....


1809 Thomas Locke Jnr



successfully reapplies for a Madras Army cadetship ..... he is listed as a Madras Cadet in 1809, and by 1810 or 11 he is an ensign with the 7th Madras Native Infantry.


1819 East India Register



Lieut Thomas Locke and Capt James Hampton both listed as officers in the 7th Regiment Native Infantry (Madras).  In 1866 their grand children Mary Locke and Francis Middlecoat are to marry and live unhappily ever afterwards.



2 May 1820 Lieut Thomas Locke (32)




7th Reg NI (Madras) marries Helena Francis Frederica (De) Sadlo


This extract is from Volume 11 of the Asiatic Journal and Monthly register, which was published from 1816 to early 1845 and contained the voluminous records of everyone in the East India Company and its armies.  Quotes below are from later volumes, and have been restricted to highlight the relevant event.



This is the India Office record of the marriage.  The witnesses were Thos R G Huntell, Mary Shaw, Anne Sharpe, Indiana Shaw, and Mary Aiskell. 


Sadly Helena only outlived the birth of their first child by a month, dying on 12 December 1821.




8 June 1822 Thomas Locke marries



Original Register


for the second time - Indiana Laura Shaw (of Madras), who had been a witness at his first wedding two years' earlier.  The wedding was in Quilon, Madras, as reported in Vol 14 of the Asiatic journal.



Just two witnesses this time - R.McNicoll and Margaret Shaw - either Indiana's mother or sister.  Indiana (sometimes named "Laura" in the birth registers) is to be Adrian's 4xgreat grandmother.



1823 Lieut Locke as an officer in the




Twenty-Fifth Native Infantry, as recorded in the 1823 in the East India Register and Army list.



29 March 1825 Samuel Richard Locke born







The marriage to Indiana also produced two surviving daughters - Harriet Amelia (to be Young) and Jane Catherine Theophilia (to be Beaver) who interestingly both married much older men - see below.


1827 East India Register



Captain Thomas Locke in the Fiftieth Regiment, Native Infantry (Fort St George, Madras)


17 April 1827




No idea why, but it looks like a good skive - he skived on as a member of the Invalid Establishment in Madras until his 1850 death 23 years, another wife, and 10 more children later in 1850 - at which time he was financially insolvent! 



17 Aug 1827 4xGrt Indiana Laura Locke dies suddenly









A Cougar family gene?


Children of Capt Thomas Locke (1788-1850 (62)) and his second wife Indiana Laura Shaw (1802 – 1827 (25)),


Adrian's 4x grt grandparents.


Harriet Amelia Locke, was born on 8 April 1824, and was 31 when she married widower Retired Lt Col Charles Wallace Young at St Thomas Mount, Madras, on 3 July 1855.  He was 52, and they had 2 surviving children.


The witnesses at the Young's 1855 wedding were mostly children of Capt George Middlecoat who had died in February 1845.  The Lockes were not related to the Middlecoats then.


G B Prior (Capt George Boyes Prior 1829-1859)

L H Prior* (nee Lucy Hambly Middlecoat Dec 1835 – Dec 1872)

F Middlecoat* (Francis Samuel Middlecoat born Jun 1839 (to marry Samuel's daughter Mary Locke, then just 5))

A S Middlecoat* (Anna Sophia Middlecoat (to be Berkeley) born Apr 1841)

A Burgess


Samuel Richard Locke, was born on 27 Feb 1825 (see record above), and was 23 and an Indigo Planter in Nellore when he married widowed Dane Charlotte Jane Sophia Nosky Rehling (nee Jansen) on 9 March 1849 somewhere around Madras. They were Adrian's 3xgrt grandparents.  She was 34 and they had 3 surviving children including Mary Henrietta (to be the very unhappy Mrs Francis Middlecoat) Adrian's 2 x grt grandmother.


Jane Catherine Theophilia Locke was born on 23 December 1826, and was 22 when she married twice widowered Capt John Napleton Beaver (48) in St Mark's, Bangalore on 6 August 1849.  He had joined the invalid establishment in 1836, and like his contemporary and friend (and now father-in-law) Capt Thomas Locke there was a positive fecundity impact.  He and Jane produce 5 little Beavers who, along with their descendants, are the only "non-direct" rellies shown on our (Gem's?) mostly Middlecoat hand drawn family tree, so the families were probably close. 



11 December 1828 Thomas marries wife No 3




Justa Jacobina Hoff Wodschow (22) (born in Frederiksberg, Denmark).



They have ten children (give or take), and Justa would have been mother to Helena's child and Indiana's three children also.


1836 - Capt Thomas Locke



features in the East India Register and Army List as a member of the Madras Invalid Establishment.


1845 - Capt Thomas Locke



again in the East India Register and Army List as a member of the Madras Invalid Establishment (/ 1st NVB) - immediately above him in the list is Capt Napleton Beaver, serial breeder, who is still four year's short of marrying Thomas' daughter Jane Catherine Theophilia.


9 March 1849 - Samuel Richard Locke,




Indigo Planter, marries Charlotte Sophia Jane Nosky (sometimes Nasky) Rehling, the widow of Augustus Johan Adolph Rehling in Madras.  She is some 10 years older than Samuel.  Charlotte's maiden name was Jansen and she was Danish.  We also have a copy the record of her first marriage to Adolph in Calcutta Cathedral in 1837.  She and Adolph had 3 boys together before he died. 



9 March 1850, Mary Henrietta Locke (to become Francis Middlecoat's desperately unhappy wife) born in Nellore.





Nellore is quite a bit to the north of Madras.   



31 July 1850 Capt Thomas Locke





dies in Madras aged 62, leaving a short will.  Not a lot of point as he was "deeply insolvent".  Friends rallied round and collected money for Justa, who died in 1857 from Cholera aged just 51yrs 2mths 2daysJusta also left a will


October 1865 - Bankruptcy for Samuel



Poor Indigo Planter / Magistrate Samuel Richard Locke avails himself of the British India equivalent of Chapter 11 bankruptcy after 16 years of Cougar marriage .....Samuel Richard Locke was described as "Deputy Collector" in the Times of India report of Francis and Mary's Madras Cathedral wedding in 1866.


24 years later Adrian's3x Grt







Grandmother, Charlotte Sophia Jane Nosky Locke, dies from a stroke in Palamcottah (Madras) on 2 April 1889 aged 74, and the impoverished Samuel Richard eventually retires to Chiswick (London), where he dies in 1894 aged 68 and worth just £93.






The Middlecoats, Hamblys, Demountfryarts & others from Bodmin,Tregony, Falmouth et al







Recapping the direct (*) ancestor line back to Dr Vinsent Demonfryart (aka de Monfryart) (early 1600s Bodmin): 


- Adrian Fletcher* (1943 -    )

- Col Michael Fletcher* (1918 - 2007 (89)) (British Army) and Peggy Sproule (1917 - 2005 (88))

- Ethel Fletcher* (Burton) (1890 - 1968 (78)) (c Madras) and Dr Frank Rex ("Jimmy") Fletcher (1890 - 1974 (84))

- "Gem" Burton (Middlecoat)* (1871 - 1953 (82)) and Lt Col John Adolphus Burton (1854 - 1924 (69)) (Indian Medical Service)

- Col Francis Middlecoat* (1839 - 1922 (83)) (Madras Army) and Mary Henrietta Locke (1850 - 1928 (78))

- Capt George Middlecoat* (1802 - 1845 (43)) (Madras Artillery) and Susannah Palmer Middlecoat (Hampton)* (1808 - 1870 (61))

- Nicholas Middlecoat jnr* (1752 - 1844 (92)) (Tregony Political Agent & All Round Rogue) and Ruth Middlecoat (Hambly) (1760 - 1825 (64))

- Jane Middlecoat* (Saunders) (1721 - 1801 (83)) and Nicholas Middlecoat snr (1718 - 1801 (83)) (Tailor)

- Elizabeth Saunders* (Demountfryart) (1692 - 1730 (38)) and Aaron Saunders (1696 - ?) (Tregony Joiner)

- Adrian's 7x Grt Grandparents - Dr George Demountfryart* (1652 - 1717 (65)) (Physician and 5 times Bodmin Mayor)

      and Anna Demountfryart (Howard) (? - 1722) - married in St Menefreda (see below)

- John Demonfryart* (1627 - ? ) and Mary ( ? ) ( ? - ? )

- Dr Vinsent Demonfryart* (c1600 - 1652 (52)) (Bodmin Physician) and Jone Demountfryart ( ? )  (? - 1642) Adrian's 9xGrt Grandparents



24 February 1675/76


Dr George Demountfryart marries Anna Howard in the church of St Menefreda (aka St Minver) over the river from Padstow.  In those days the spire would not have been quite so bent, and the tombstones would have been different, but the feeling would have been very much the same as they approached the church.






1600 - 1825 Nicholas Middlecoat jnr and





four even earlier generations of Cornish ancestors in and around Tregony - back past Dr George Demountfryart (aka de Monfriart etc), Bodmin physician - see his name as 1700 Bodmin Mayor on a fresh water outlet in Bodmin's Bell Lane - to his parents John and Mary, and his grandparents Vinsent (another Bodmin doctor) and Jone.




1752 - Nicholas Middlecoat Jnr





 is Christened on the 25 August 1752 in Cuby with Tregony, Cornwall.




23 November 1760 - Ruth Hambly





baptized in the Church of St James, Cuby with Tregony, Cornwall. 








Tregony High - 2011.  In the early 1800s Nick Middlecoat Jnr's Queen's Head Inn stood where the white building on the right now is  The reason why the road is unusually wide is that in the middle there was a market hall, and above this was a meeting room (for the "council") - Nick went one stage further and put a substantial arch over the road between his inn on the right and the meeting room in the centre.  Substantial, because on top of the arch linking the inn and the meeting room was a drinking lounge run by Nick (a sort of Cornwall Vasari Corridor with bar)


The tower on the left was built much later when the middle-road markets were removed, but the large stone house (the Rectory) and the coaching inn next door (The King's Arms - an excellent lunch spot and now sole survivor of Tregony's 30 - 40 inns and pubs) on the left would have been familiar sights to Nick.  Many many thanks to Frank Grigg, local historian, for helping interpret all of this.


Detail from a 1787 map held at the Cornish Archives



6 July 1779 - Nicholas Middlecoat Jnr (27)




marries Ruth Hambly (18) in the Church of St James, Cuby with Tregony, Cornwall.








in preparation




William Hambly (b1758), Ruth's older brother,




was also an interesting entrepreneurial character.  He set up some profitable trading deals using the "Falmouth Packets", but then these started to go pear shaped and he went bankrupt.  He was Mayor of Falmouth in 1799, and shared his wheeler dealer interests with his more domestic wheeler dealer brother-in-law Nick Middlecoat jnr.  And he is the only cast member of Ciao Famiglia who can boast that he got



a letter from George Washington!



Mount Vernon, September 1, 1799.


Sir: I have been favoured with your favour of the 13th. of April from Falmouth, accompanying what I persuade myself will (when opened) be found to be, a very fine Cheese, as all which I have had from you, have proved.


For this additional evidence of your kind, and polite attention to me, I pray you to accept my gratitude and thanks.


Unsuccessful in my first attempt to get a few (Virginia) Hams to you I am making another trial through the medium of Messrs. Thompson and Veitch, and hope they will meet a better fate than the last.


For your obliging wishes respecting me I feel very sensible. I reciprocate them cordially, and am Sir etc.



Extract from "Old Falmouth" by Susan Gay (1903) which may partly explain William's enthusiasm for sending cheese to George Washington!




1 September 1802 George Middlecoat born.



Copy of the 1802 page of the register of the Bethesda Independent Chapel, Truro (Cornwall). George was child 12 of 13 who were all baptised in the Bethesda Chapel.  His father Nicholas Middlecoat Jnr was a political fixer and Licensee of the Queens Head Inn, Tregony (Cornwall) - there is a lot more here about Nicholas Middlecoat Jnr and Tregony in the 1750 - 1850 period.


12 July 1808 - Susannah Palmer Hampton



- to be Mrs George Middlecoat, born at Sankerrydroog.  The surname of her uncle-in-law, the mega-wealthy John Palmer (husband of her father's sister), now adopted as a "family" Christian name.  No church record yet.


14 July 1819 - Nick Middlecoat convicted .....



The Times reports that Nicholas Middlecoat jnr and four others were found guilty of attempting to rig an election by bribing the voters of Grampound - an odd prosecution and verdict as bribery of this sort was rampant and, apart from this event, was ignored in Cornwall and elsewhere!  The court report gives a fascinating insight into the conversations and comings and goings around the "Bell and Crown" coaching inn in Holborn - a 24 hour coach ride from Exeter on the Royal Auxiliary Mail - in June 1818.  Grampound later became the only rotten borough to be disenfranchised before they all fell over in the wake of the Great Reform Act of 1832.  We have not yet been able to find out what punishment was meted out to Nick and his mates.


Grampound High in October 2011


10 February 1820 - George Middlecoat (17)



lodges a £500 bond (number 2349) on becoming a Cadet in the Madras Army.  This would have been a sort of insurance policy with a cover of over £20,000 in today's pounds!  His original application papers are still filed in the India Office Records section of the British Library, and are available on lds film 1951826.  The IOR cadet application collections are of particular interest because they are original documents, not "head office returns" like many of the church records.


George entered the East India Company's Addiscombe (Croydon) Officer Training Seminary on 11 February 1820, graduated on 10 May 1822 and on the following day was appointed a Lieutenant in the Madras Artillery.


14 January 1823 - George M arrives in India -



more detective work needed to establish what boat he arrived on


1822 - The 1823 East India Register



shows George Middlecoat as a Cadet (in 1822?) in the Fort St George (Madras) Artillery.



5 January 1826 - George Middlecoat (23)







marries Susannah Palmer Hampton (17), grand-daughter of Col Samuel Hampton, at St Thomas' Mount, in Madras.  George and Susannah are to return to England at least twice before George dies in 1845 aged just 42.



1827 - The East India Register - Lieut George





Middlecoat appears in the "Quartermaster / Interpreter / Paymaster" group in the Madras Artillery.


1836 - The East India Register - Captain





Middlecoat artilleries on.


27 July 1839 - Francis Middlecoat





is christened in St Mary Haggerston, Hackney, Middlesex.  The fact that George's name is not filled in is odd because he would have been around as he and the missus (and weenie Francis) sailed back into Madras on the 25 January 1840 on the ship "True Briton".  Perhaps he could already sense what a ghastly little shit he had sired.



1844 - A Middlecoat goes to Sydney




"Departures from Sydney 18 April 1844 on the MEDUSA

Captain Purdy for Madras with horses



Capt. Mackenzie

Dr. Baki

Messes. Mark Dixon, Horace Gooch, William Bunny and James May

Mr. Middlecoat and two native servants"


Was this our George (without military title - unlikely) helping Cap'n Purdy buy Australian (gun) horses ?  Or having a well paid leave (Indian Army Officers remained on full pay on furlough in Oz, half pay in England) with servants & without family (again unlikely).  Could just have been George's eldest son James Hampton Pinson but he was only 16.  


4 August 1844 - Nick Middlecoat, aged 92,


is buried in the churchyard of St James, Cuby with Tregony, after a very long and very eventful life!!  Sadly no gravestone survives.

1844 - East India Register


List of the Officers of the Madras Artillery

1844 - Cap'n George commands the



artillery which smashes a breach or more in the walls of Samanghur and gets several mentions in The London Times of 5 December 1844.


1845 - Captain George Middlecoat's last


entry in the East india Register.


"Madras Artillery Records"


Captain George Middlecoat



Captain George Middlecoat (Madras Artillery) was a Cadet of 1821, and arrived in India 14th January 1823, date of Commission as 1st Lieutenant 11th May 1822; promoted to Captain 29th May 1832.


Served with the South Eastern Division of the Army in 1824 and 1825, and was present at the taking of Arrcan.


Served in the Southern Mahratta Country from the 16th September 1844, till the early part of 1845, under the command of Major General P. Delamotte, C.B.; was present at, and commanded the Artillery at the siege and capture by storm of the Fort of Samaghur on the 13th October 1844; at the surrender of Budderghur on the 10th November 1844; and the siege and capture by storm of the Fort of Punalla; and at the taking possession of the Fort of Powenghur on the 1st December 1844. Received the thanks of Lieutenant Colonel Wallace, commanding Field Force before Samaghur, dated 20th September and 9th October 1844, and of Major General P. Delamotte, C.B., commanding Southern Division of the Army, dated 14th October 1844. Received the thanks of Lieutenant Colonel Lloyd, C.B., in common with the Officers and men composing the force before Punalla.


Captain Middlecoat died* at Belgaum on the 14th February 1845.

*of heatstroke we think


Madras Artillery Records Vol. 12 (1849) p. 1637 - thanks to Jane Ellis for this.


14 February 1845 - after his all-too-brief moment in the sun in 1844 (see above),



Madras Artillery Captain George Middlecoat (42) spends too long in the next lot of sun, and he apparently dies from sunstroke in Belgaum (near the mid-west coast of India) leaving wife Susanna (née Hampton) and around 5 kids aged between 3 and 17 behind (at least as many again had died in infancy).  The Madras Military Fund would have paid pensions to Susanna, George's unmarried daughters, and sons under 21.


1857 - 58 Indian Mutiny et seq



in the wake of which the British Raj took over from the East India Company, which was originally set up in 1600 at the end of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I.  One consequence of this was that Addiscombe House, the Company's Officer Training Seminary south of London (today's Croydon), where George Middlecoat was a student from 1820 to 1822, was closed.


Susanna's brother Lieutenant General (eventually) William Philip Hampton, in 1855 a 45 year old Major in the 31st (Bengal) Native Infantry, was one of the very few native infantry commanders whose troops did not join the mutiny.


1858 Francis Middlecoat (19)



lifelong nastie, commissioned in the Madras Army (Infantry).


10 January 1866 Francis Middlecoat (26)



marries Mary Henrietta Locke (15) in St George's Cathedral, Madras.  Who paid for the tiffin ? - her dad Samuel had been bankrupted in 1865.  It was to be a sad sad marriage for her from night one.


28 March 1870 George Middlecoat's



widow Susanna Palmer Middlecoat (Hampton), dies in Surrey, England aged 61.  She is buried on 1 April in Norwood (now West Norwood) Cemetery.  Her grave plot has probably been recycled as there is no record of it in the cemetery records now.



3 April 1871 (UK Census) - Francis Middlecoat




on home furlough is head of household at 2 Laburnum Cottages, Bank Street, Great Malvern (below), with wife Mary Henrietta and daughter Lottie (Charlotte Lucy Hampton) (whose names are swapped over in the hand written census form).



Next door at 3 Laburnum Cottages is Lucy H Prior (35), a widow and annuitant of the India Office who is living with three daughters (Louisa, Susanna and Mary) and one adopted daughter (Martha) (and a servant of course).  Lucy is Francis' sister - daughter of George Middlecoat - so that's probably why he was there.  Great Malvern  is close to Tewkesbury, home to the grandfather and great grandfather of Lucy's late husband Capt George Prior.


Lucy's husband Capt George Boyes Prior (Bombay Cavalry) had died in India's North West Frontier area in 1859, and she herself is to die in Great Malvern aged just 36 in December 1872, just over a year after the census.  Probably the three (or four) girls went back to relatives (the Middlecoats?) in India, because they all married out there.  Mary's husband died young on the North West Frontier, and she went to Edinburgh, eventually to marry a knighted ex-doctor ex-Provost and become "Lady Mary". 


Susanna married Samuel Archbald Locke - brother of Mary Henrietta and eldest son of Samuel Richard Locke - who became chief judge of Cochin, though at some stage it seems that Susanna herself might have decamped to live in Edinburgh near her sister - her name was certainly absent from the memorial tablet erected for Archbald in the Franciscan church in Cochin after his death in 1912.  Another generation shift but there was more to come when the awful Col Francis later accused his wife Mary and Samuel Archbald of committing incest ....



And Louisa married (1879) Jakob Steiner from Winterhur where they then lived, and around 1911 had their portraits painted by Wilhelm Balmer.




24 December 1871 - Georgiana Ernstin Middlecoat born in 2 Laburnum Cottages, Bank Street, Great Malvern (photo above).




Like several of his home furloughs Capt Francis Middlecoat's 1870 leave was a relaxed affair timeline wise - from 7 July 1870 to 5 June 1872 (1 year 334 days the service record says).  This comment is possibly a little unfair as his first long furlough seems to have been unpaid, and later he was granted at least one extended furlough for unrecorded medical reasons (maybe extreme paranoia!).  Notwithstanding this, one gets the feeling that he was very good at playing the system!


As an unrelated aside we heard an interesting story that some Madras army officers discovered Australia as an attractive furlough destination, because when there they remained on full pay whereas the Old Country meant half pay.


What did officers on extended furloughs do to keep themselves amused one wonders?  Francis did not even register Georgiana's birth - that was done by Mary!  


Georgiana Ernstin (Adrian's great grandmother) was the only one of her many siblings not to have been born in India.  Some sources have her as Georgina Ernestine, but we know that was not what was on her birth certificate.  She was called "Gem".


Gem Burton (Middlecoat) - early 1920s







The Webbers & Incledons



 Barnstaple & Braunton


Recapping the direct (*) ancestor line back to Philip Rogers Webber (1732 - 1819 (86)) (Braunton landowner) and Mary Webber (Incledon) (1736 - 1807 (71)) (Incledon heiress) 


- Adrian Fletcher* (1943 -    )

- Col Michael Fletcher* (1918 - 2007 (89)) (British Army) and Peggy Sproule (1917 - 2005 (88))

- Ethel Fletcher* (Burton) (1890 - 1968 (78)) (c Madras) and Dr Frank Rex ("Jimmy") Fletcher (1890 - 1974 (84)) (Folkestone doctor in peacetimes)

- Surgeon Lt Col John Adolphus Burton* (1854 - 1924 (69)) (Indian Medical Service) and "Gem" Burton (Middlecoat) (1871 - 1953 (82))

- Priscilla Burton* (Webber) (1826 - 1887 (61)) and Charles Benjamin Burton (1824 - 1884 (60)) (Madras Clerk)

- Henry Webber* (1784 - 1854 (70)) (Madras Clerk) and Jane (Johana) Webber (Dosseyn) (1799 - 1878 (79))

- Maj Gen Henry Webber* (1762 - 1833 (71) (Madras Army) and unknown (Indian) mother

- Philip Rogers Webber (1732 - 1819 (86)) (Braunton landowner) and Mary Webber* (Incledon) (1736 - 1807 (71)) (Adrian's 5xGrt Grandparents)




Delving back even further into the Incledons .......


- John Incledon* (1702 - 1746 (44)) and Elizabeth Incledon (Northcote) (1700 - 1758 (58))


- Henry Incledon* (1674 - 1736 (62)) and Mary Incledon (Davie) (1682 - 1710 (28))


- Lewis Incledon (1636 - 1698 (62)) and Elizabeth Incledon (Fane)* (1648 - ?)


- Hon Robert Fane* (1610 - 1657 (47)) (7th and youngest son of Francis Fane, who occupied the revived Earldom of Westmoreland) and Dorothy Fane (Sedley) (1614 - 1654 (40)) from Igtham, Kent


- Adrian's 10x Grt Grandparents:  Rt Hon Sir Francis Fane, Earl of Westmoreland* (1580 - 1629 (49)) and Mary Fane (Mildmay) (? - 1640).  Mary's grandfather,Thomas Mildmay of Chelmsford, Adrian's 13xGrt Grandfather (one of 32,768 13xGrt Grandparents), was the Royal Commissioner responsible for receiving the assets of the Monasteries closed by Henry VIII in the 1530s - like a third or more of the monetary wealth of England, whilst her father was a major Elizabethan political mover and shaker.  


- Adrian's 11x Grt Grandparents:  Sir Thomas Fane (c1510 - 1589 (79)) and Mary Fane (Neville) Baroness le Despenser (c1554 - 1626 (72)), whose magnificent tomb is in the parish church St Laurence, Mereworth (Kent).  Mary was one of the wealthiest people in England, and Francis was her sole heir.



Tomb of  Sir Thomas Fane (c1510 - 1589 (79)) and Mary Fane (Neville) Baroness le Despenser (c1554 - 1626 (72))

in the beautiful basilica style church of St Laurence, Mereworth (Kent)




More about earlier Incledons, including transcriptions of some of the extensive memorials on the south wall and over the pulpit in St Brannock, Braunton, and tales from Henry VIII's (1491-1509-1547 (56)) England.




St Brannock, Braunton (N Devon)



In the distance behind the bottom of the flag is a fascinating and unusual MI - a family tree of several generations of Incledons including an Earl, and their wives ......




Near this monument are inter’d ye Bodys of


Robert Incledon of Buckland Gent. who married Agnes

ye daughter & heir of John Wolf of this prsh Gent. & was

buried ye 25th day of Decembr 1558


John Incledon Gent. Their Son married Jane daughter

of Lewis Davill of Marland Esq & was buried ye 16th of

Septembr 1570


Lewis Incledon Esq their son married first Grace ye daughter

& heir of Robert Cranberry of Bratton Clovelly Gent.  Secondly

Willmott daughter of Andrew Pomeroy of Collaton Esq.

& was buried ye 21st day of Decembr 1614


John Incledon Esq his son by his first venture married

Philippy daughter of William Glyn of Glynin ye County of

Cornwall Esq.  Lewis Incledon Esq his son by his second

Venture married first Anne Wiot daughter of Phillip Wiot

Esq secondly Eliza daughter of Thomas Collemore of

Lilcott Gent. & was buried ye 6th of Aprill 1657


John Incledon Esq his eldest son by his 2d venture married

Honor daughter of William Pagett Esq & was buried ye 1st of

June 1661


Lewis Incledon Esq his 2d son by ye same venture married

1st Alic daughter of John Addington of Harloberry in ye County

of Essex Esq 2y Eliza daughter of ye Honble Robert Fane

of Combanck in ye Countey of Kent Esq A younger son

to ye Right Honble ye Earle of Westmorland & was buried

ye 2d of February 1698


To whose memory chiefly this monument was erected

by his widow Eliza Incledon & his son Henry Incledon


Transcribed by Adrian Fletcher - January 2013



We have photos and transcriptions of all the Incledon and Webber MIs in the church which may get a separate page some day!  But it would be a shame to move on without remembering Balthazar Beare, who died in December 1682:



More about earlier Incledons, including transcriptions of some of the extensive memorials on the south wall and over the pulpit in St Brannock, Braunton, and tales from Henry VIII's (1491-1509-1547 (56)) England.




As regards "Ye Earle of Westmoreland" the Westmoreland earldom was revived in 1624 in favour of Sir Francis Fane, product of Maidstone Grammar and Queens Cambridge, and later inter alia MP for Maidstone.


The Fane family lived around Ightham (Kent) and were still enjoying what remained of the moolah generated by an earlier Fane, who was involved in the capture and ransom of King John II le Bon of France at the battle of Poitiers in 1356 when he fought with the awful Black Prince in the 100 years' war.


But that was only the start wealth wise, because Francis (1580 - 1629 (49)) was the only child and sole heir of his dad Thomas' second marriage - to Mary Neville, (La) Baroness le Despenser etc and one of England's richest.  Her famous Despenser ancestor Edward, who also fought for the Black Prince, is still kneeling on the roof of his chantry chapel in Tewksbury Abbey.


The worries of administering this super wealth must have worn poor Francis down, because he died at the age of 49.  We have a copy of his will and that of his mother the Baroness.


More about the Fane Family from the UK National Archives


and here is how all this translates into the 1510 - 1736 Fane / Incledon family tree


It also transpires that Francis Fane, 1st Earl of Westmoreland (second time around) was Adrian's 10x grt grandfather.


And wait, there is even more .....



Francis' father-in-law was Sir Anthony Mildmay (d1617) who owned Apethorpe Hall (still there and (February 2013) for sale - without bathrooms and electricity) and other bits and pieces - which Francis inherited.  Apethorpe was one of the favourite haunts of the huntin shootin fishin Stewart monarch James I (1566-1603-1625 (59)).



Sir Anthony was a son of Sir Walter Mildmay and his wife Mary Walsingham (sister inter alia of Sir Francis Walsingham) (Adrian'as 12xgrt grandparents).  Sir Walter ( ? - 1589) was a mover and shaker in Elizabethan England.  At one stage he was Chancellor of the Exchequer, and he also founded Emmanuel College, Cambridge.




Thomas Mildmay of Chelmsford, Sir Walter's dad and Adrian's 13xGrt Grandfather (one of 32,768 13xGrt Grandparents), was the Royal Commissioner responsible for receiving the assets of the Monasteries closed by Henry VIII in the 1530s - like a third or more of the monetary wealth of England!!  We have a copy of his will as well.



Back to the memorial inscription and life after Sir Francis died in 1629. 


Sir Francis and Mary Mildmay had 7 sons and 6 daughters.  Son number 7 (Robert) married Dorothy Sedley of Ightham (Kent).


Their daughter Elizabeth married Lewis Incledon (1636 - 1698 (62)) of Braunton (Devon) making them Adrian's 8xgrt grandparents.


After that there were:


Henry Incledon 1674 - 1736 (62) of Braunton, m Mary Davie 1682 - 1710 (28)


John Incledon 1702 -1746 (44) of Braunton, m Elizabeth Northcote 1700 - 1758 (58)


Mary Incledon 1736 - 1807 (71) m Philip Rogers Webber 1732 - 1819 (86) son of Alexander the Barnstaple pewterer (see portrait below) ..... the Incledons run out of men, and marry into the Webbers.


A memorial for Philip Rogers Webber his Incledon wife Mary, and sons Lt John Incledon Webber RN and Lt Col Charles Webber, sits over the inside of  the south door of St Brannock, Braunton: 



Over the pulpit is a memorial tablet (shown lower in page) to Maj Gen Henry Webber and his French wife Elizabeth Lucia L’Ecolier - no mention anywhere (understandably) of his earlier liaison with an Indian lady and the birth of Adrian's 3xGrtGf Henry Webber back in 1784!



The Webber Pewterers of Barnstaple -


1600 - 1740





Four Generations of Webber pewterers in Barnstaple


From the Museum of North Devon (Barnstaple) booklet about Pewterers



* Going backwards from 9xGgf Jefferie Webber we also have from other web sources Willyam, Digory, John, John, and John Webber, and their wives - however there are problems in the Jefferie-Willyam-Digory linkages, with a couple of son births being allocated to child mothers - needs checking further!  Here we have just gone back to Jefferie (spelling as per parish reg transcripts).



Jefferie Webber ? – 1677 ( ? )*

m Rebekah Mocke 1599 – 1679 (80) on 22 November 1627 in Barnstaple



John Webber Snr 1633 – 1703 (70)


m1 Dorothy Hawkinge 1630 – 1663 (33) on 25 December 1651 in Pilton St Mary

a Christmas wedding



m2 Mary Nicholes 1642 – 1697 (55) on 20 February 1664 in Pilton St Mary


worked with brother Richard Webber 1637 – 1708 (71)




John Webber Jnr 1653 – 1735 (82)


m1 Mary Fleming 1657 – 1687 (30) on 26 October 1681 in Bratton Fleming, Devon


m2 Elizabeth Schift (Widow) - ? - 1706 on 27 August 1691


Mayor of Barnstaple 1702 & 1719




Alexander Webber 1685 – 1739 (54)


m Mrs* Elizabeth Rogers 1703 -1737 (34) on 25 December 1728

in St Michael & All Angels, Loxhore, Devon

* she is not described as a widow .... at this time "more mature" spinsters were often addressed as "Mrs"

another Christmas wedding



Mayor of Barnstaple 1737



and Adrian’s 6xGrt Grandparents




Alexander Webber's son was Phillip Rogers Webber

He was the one who married an Incledon (see previous panel)



Sources used in addition to the booklet about Barnstaple Pewterers


Various Parish Record data bases including the amazing 530 page book "Barnstaple Parish Register of Baptisms, Marriages and Burials 1528-1812", ed Wainwright and published in 1903.



We were hoping to look for MIs inside the Webber's Barnstaple Parish Church of St Peter & St Mary Magdalene, but in September 2012 it was dark and unfriendly looking and very firmly locked, with no information re keyholders or access (in stark contrast to the Guildhall).



Alexander Webber - Barnstaple pewterer and father of Philip Rogers Webber is christened in Barnstaple on 22 August 1685.  He becomes Adrian's 6xgrt grandfather.






The superbly restored Barnstaple Guildhall with its amazing collection of Hudson portraits.

Many thanks to Denise Holton of the Barnstaple Heritage Centre for organizing us access at very short notice.



Alexander Webber (1685-1739 (53)) leading pewterer, Mayor of Barnstaple and Adrian's 6xgrt grandfather.

This portrait was painted by Thomas Hudson (1701 - 1779 (78)) and hangs in the Barnstaple Guildhall.



Philip Rogers Webber (1732 - 1819 (87))



ch in Barnstaple 10 January 1732-33, marries Mary Incledon (1736 - 1807 (71)) on 26 March 1759 in Barnstaple.


19 July 1762 Henry Webber snr, the third of



the 16 children of Philip Rogers Webber and Mary Webber (Incledon) is christened in St Brannock, Braunton.

To Madras    


1780 - Ensign Henry Webber snr travels



to Madras on the "Belmont" in August 1780.  On 18th July 1784 little Henry Webber jnr (to be Adrian's 3x Grt Grandfather) is born to "an unknown mother" - was he big Henry Webber's only bastard child - unlikely !


10 February 1810 - Lieutenant Colonel




Henry Webber snr (now 48) marries Elizabeth Lucia L’Ecolier in Trickinopoly. 


His bastard son "Little" Henry Webber jnr is now 25 - what had been his growing up arrangements - not with Dad one suspects, but he also does not seem to know who his mother was!!



21 March 1812 Henry Webber jnr marries



c14 year old Jane (aka Johana) Dosseyn in St Mary, Fort St George, Madras.  Johana comes from the Dutch enclave of Hoogland.


13 February 1814 - Henry Webber jnr, the





now married bastard son of ensign Henry Webber and an unknown native lady, gives himself a very adult christening and it is doubtful that his outed dad was there.  It was the discovery of this record that revealed to us what Henry Snr had been up to early on and where Henry jnr emerged from!  Henry snr did not tell anyone in England later!




1819 Maj-Gen Henry Webber snr




and family leave India and eventually move in to Buckland House, Braunton (Devon) after the death of his father Philip Rogers Webber.  Lucia dies in August 1823, aged just 29, in the wake of the birth of her 7th child.  Henry snr dies in 1833 aged 71 (will).  Nobody in Devon knew or knows anything about the existence of Henry jnr back in Black Town, Madras.


Memorial in St Brannock, Braunton



Back in India





21 October 1826 Priscilla Webber,




is born in Madras and christened in Black Town Chapel on 11 May 1828.  She is about the 5th child of Henry jnr and Jane.



Priscilla is destined to marry Charles Benjamin Burton,


Scroll down to see record of the marriage of Adrian's 2x Grt grandparents Priscilla Webber and Charles Benjamin Burton on 20 January 1853 in Blacktown, Madras.


22 January 1854 - Henry Webber jnr



buried - St Mary's church, Madras.  He was 69 and had died from Dysentery. 



9 July 1878 - Jane Webber



(Dosseyn), 80 year old widow of Henry Webber jnr, buried at Washermanpettah, Madras, aged 80.  The poor old lady had mouth cancer.





The British Library glossary of special terminology used in India during the British Administration.


The Burtons



Thanks to Sylvia Murphy of FIBIS and the Family Research Centre at Parramatta (Sydney) for help with all the India Office records, and in particular those revealing the sad story of Dublin Labourer John Adolphus Burton Snr, from the Parish of St Paul, Adrian's 3 x Grt grandfather.


Recapping the direct (*) ancestor line back to John Adolphus and Alice Burton (Hall) in Dublin in the late 1700s.


- Adrian Fletcher* (1943 -    )

- Col Michael Fletcher* (1918 - 2007 (89)) (British Army) and Peggy Sproule (1917 - 2005 (88))

- Ethel Fletcher* (Burton) (1890 - 1968 (78)) (c Madras) and Dr Frank Rex ("Jimmy") Fletcher (1890 - 1974 (84)) (Folkestone doctor in peacetimes)

- Surgeon Lt Col John Adolphus Burton* (1854 - 1924 (69)) (Indian Medical Service) and "Gem" Burton (Middlecoat) (1871 - 1953 (82))

- Charles Benjamin Burton* (1824 - 1884 (60)) (Madras Clerk) and Priscilla Burton (Webber) (1826 - 1887 (61))

- Matross / Conductor John Adolphus Burton (1795 - 1827 (32)) (Madras Artilleryman) and Susanna nnn / Habernack (1791 - 1850 (59))

- John Adolphus Burton snr (1774 - 1832 (58)) (Dublin) and Alice Hall ( ? - ? ) - Adrian's 4xgrt grandparents



John Adolphus Burton snr born c1774, and



on 15 January 1791 marries Alice Hall in the Church of Ireland's (COI's) St Mary, Dublin.


John Adolphus Burton jnr born 1795 - baptized



5 April 1795 in St Pauls, Dublin (COI).  There is another marriage record in 1800 for JAB snr (to Margaret Tynan) so Alice must have died before then.  There is a burial record for John Adolphus Burton in 1832 aged 58 in St Peter, Dublin (COI).


John Adolphus Burton jnr departs the









More about the "Regent"



and its logs



Chatham Depot along with 360 other recruits on 4 February 1816 in the ship "Regent" bound for Bombay, then Madras (where he got off) and places further east.






1816 - 1817 Madras Muster / Casualty Rolls





John Burton appears as a Matross (gunner's assistant), 2nd (Artillery) Bat Fort St George (Madras) / St Thomas Mount Artillery in the muster lists for late 1816.



Mrs Susanna Habernack ("a native"), who is to marry John Adolphus Burton Snr in 1817,




was possibly married first to John Habernack - a musician from Germany, Viena (sic) who had arrived in Madras from London on 3rd Feb 1804.  In the December 1815 Madras list of residents he lived at 41 Anderson Street, Black Town.  There were no other (adult male) Habernacks in town.  No record of his death in 1816 or 1817 or of little Habernacks yet.



3 December 1817 - John Adolphus Burton






(22) marries widow and "native" Mrs Susannah Habernack (26) in St Mary's Church, Madras - she signed with "her X mark".  Native could mean "native" or "non-British". 


John Adolphus is described as a Matross in the 2nd Madras artilllery, which is about as junior as you can artillery-wise.  Impressive then that on 20 December 1819 (aged 24) he became a Conductor (WO I + equivalent = about as senior as you can get ordnance-wise), Fort St George Arsenal (Madras) - as recorded in the 1820 East India Register & Army List.  He was in the same position in late 1822 as recorded in the 1823 East India Register and Army List (extract below). 




29 April 1824 Charles Benjamin Burton





(Adrian's gg-grandfather) christened in St Mary's Church, Fort St George, Madras.   He was in the end the only surviving child of Conductor John Adolphus and Susanna.  Two little siblings died in early 1824, just before Charles was born, and a third died a few years' later at the age of 3.  Heartbreaking, especially in view of what happened to John Adolphus himself.



St Mary's Church, Fort St George - from "The Story of Madras" by Glen Barlow, 1921



On 3rd November in 1826, things




go pear shaped for Conductor Burton (31).  The 1825 East India Register shows Conductor J A Burton exiled to the Nagpore (now Nagpur) Ordinance Sub-Force, a year later he is still there, then the 1827 edition shows him all on his own back in Madras under a special heading "Reduced" (= "Reduced to the Ranks") effective 3rd November 1826 ....



Then very sadly we discover that at the baptism of John Edward Burton on 23 July 1827 his father has become "the late" John Burton, Gunner.  Thumbing back through the register entries we found the burial of John Burton, Gunner 1st Battalion Artillery, in Nagapore on 26 January 1827. 



Neither age (he would have been c32) nor cause of death are stated.  It is just possible we may discover why he was "reduced" via a regimental court-martial record, but his death within three month's of this is likely to remain a mystery - could it be the grog ??.


Even more sadly John Edward is buried on 1 June 1831, leaving just Charles Benjamin in the care of his Indian mother, almost certainly without any pension.


18 December 1850 Susanna Burton



(  / Habernack), long widowed mother of Charles Benjamin Burton, dies in Madras aged 59 of Atrophy.


20 January 1853 Charles Benjamin Burton (28),





clerk, brought up as an only child by his widowed mother, marries Priscilla Webber (26) in Blacktown, Madras.




10 December 1854 - John Adolphus Burton (jnr) born in Madras - Christened 17 January 1854 Mission Church, Blacktown (Madras)



As per Indian Medical Service (IMS) entry application papers and Crawford's Roll of the IMS


His BMJ obit says he was born in Rajahmundry, which is some 470 km north of Madras, but other records say it was Madras, and he was certainly Christened a month later at the Mission Church in Blacktown (Madras).


John Adolphus' father, Charles Benjamin Burton (30), was described then and later as "a (EICo) writer" (see earlier - not to be confused with novelist!).  By then the EICo was government owned, into administrating rather than trading, so maybe there was a career writers' stream.  John Adolphus is the oldest of 5 children, but 3 and possibly 4 of them die before the age of two.  His father had been the sole survivor of 4 children - a tough country.



1874 - Extract from J A Burton's Indian (Army) Medical Service entry papers (L/Mil/9/407 f344-350)




                       From Revd Charles Cooper MA

I have much pleasure in bearing testimony to the character & acquirements of Mr. John Burton.  I had him for upwards of two years in my Scripture & Latin classes in the Doveton College* as a student.  He did his work faithfully & made satisfactory progress.  His disposition is amiable & his moral character is irreproachable.  If he should succeed in gaining a scholarship in the medical college for which he is an applicant, I am sure he would do his best to deserve it.

                        Charles Cooper

                        F.C. College, Madras

                        30th June 1874


*From "The Story of Madras" by Glen Barlow, 1921 - Doveton College, Vepery, for Anglo-Indian boys was opened in 1855.  It owes its existence to a wealthy Eurasian, (Naval) Captain John Doveton, who obtained his Captaincy in the service of the Nizam of Hyderabad, and who left a large sum of money to an earlier institution, the Parental Academy, which was afterwards called Doveton College in the deceased officer's honour.



22 January 1880 - John Adolphus Burton (25)



is admitted to the British Medical Register having studied in Edinburgh to become a LRCP Edin, and a LRCS Edin in 1879.  How did he fund himself?  Did he get a scholarship?


1881 John Adolphus Burton (26), Surgeon / MD, on board the Indian Troopship HMS Serapis bound for India.




(scroll right down for illustration of ship)



Lots of doctors, officers, other ranks and families were on the well appointed steam / sail combo Serapis on their way to India.  At census time (2 April 1881) the ship was passing through the Suez Canal (opened in 1869) under the command of Capt Guy O Twiss.  In 1875 Serapis had been used by the Prince of Wales to go on a state visit to India hence the "well appointed" description.  An earlier (1779) H.M.S. Serapis had fought and lost a famous engagement with the Bonhomme Richard - the first ship in the "American Navy".



1881 Dr John Adolphus Burton jnr




Admitted to the Indian Medical Service (IMS).



21 September 1884 Charles Benjamin Burton




 (John Adolphus jnr's dad) dies aged 60. He is buried in St Mary's Burial Ground, St Thomas Mount, Madras



8 October 1884 Charles Benjamin






Burton's will proved in Madras.



13 June 1887 Burial of Priscilla Burton




in St Mary's Burial Ground, St Thomas Mount, Madras.






Burtons & Middlecoats join forces




1888 33 year old John Adolphus Burton






marries 16 year old Georgiana Ernstin ("Gem") Middlecoat at Pallavaram which was the major military garrison for the Madras Presidency.  Today it is neighboured (possibly covered) by the Chennai (Madras) International Airport.  John Adolphus, who was "a real gent", must have been such a relief for "Gem" after her daddy Francis Middlecoat who was not.


12 August 1890 - Ethel Henrietta Florence Burton (Adrian's Grandmother) is born in Mangalore, India.






Mangalore is in SW India.  Ethel was christened there on 14 September 1890, sadly too late to ever meet her Burton grandparents.  She was an interesting and outstanding woman, confined in the role of doctor's wife - how I wish I remembered more of the family stories she told me when I was little!


Ethel was the second of three surviving Burton children - older brother Charlie was born in Rangoon on 18 January 1889, and younger brother Cyril was born in Belgaum in 1894.  A girl, Edith Winifred, born in 1891, must have died in infancy.


17 January 1891 - Col Francis Middlecoat (51)



"Commandant of European Veterans, Madras", an excuse for spending a life in the Officers' Mess probably, retires from the Madras Army and eventually heads for London not, one imagines, confident of a warm reception from his separating wife!.


March 1894 - Samuel Richard Locke dies in London.



Mary Middlecoat's father Samuel Locke dies in Chiswick aged 68, leaving his entire estate of just £93 2s 9d to his daughter


One of his sons, Samuel Archbald Locke, was on his way to becoming Chief Judge of Cochin and on the way marry Susanna Prior (see above - work that gen-slip relationship out!) - though it seems she might later have developed a preference for living solo in Edinburgh like her sister! 



5 April 1891 to 1894




Mary Middlecoat (Locke) with six children and a servant are censussed in 142 Evering Rd, Hackney - no sign of the Colonel (who interestingly had been christened at St Mary Haggerston, Hackney) ....


Then, on 9 June 1891, the allegedly molto adultera moglie Mary files a petition for judicial separation from the allegedly verbalmente offensivo colonnello ....





Col Francis Middlecoat (? date)                         Mary Middlecoat (Locke) (1912)


The petition was dismissed, but you would have to wonder how they got on for the next thirty-something years living together.


The 90s were not a good decade for Colonel Francis Middlecoat (or probably his family) - in September 1894 he is assaulted in his pad in Shepherds Bush by prospective son-in-law Alfred Perring Taylor.  The subsequent court case is reported in the Times (Taylor was descended from a Lord Mayor of London and a Chief Justice of Ceylon).  Alfred Perring's marriage to Mary Constance went ahead in Kensington (did the Colonel pay?), and by the 1901 census they had produced 4 little children in Fulham.  Shortly thereafter the Taylors moved to spend the rest of their lives a prudently safe distance away - Saskatchewan - where they had 2 more children and in 1913 he became deputy provincial treasurer A P Taylor died in Vancouver in 1955 aged 82.



1892 December




Surgeon Captain John Adolphus Burton promoted to Surgeon Major.






1901 - Georgiana Burton discovered in Bedford with the 3 kids (Charlie 12, Ethel 11 and Cyril) and her sister Lucy Middlecoat.



Temporarily back from India - maybe to settle arrangements for child accommodation / education - why Bedford? ... Ethel (my grandmother) told me that she saw her parents only once between the ages of 10ish and 17ish - I also remember her saying she lived in Bedford (sort of) .... some of the early photos in her album are of Bedford schoolgirls and boys.  Maybe there were other family members around here where she, Charlie and Cyril could go in the school holidays - and where indeed were the schools they were at?..  We just hope she did not have to spend time with her awful grandfather Francis Middlecoat!


In 1900 Surgeon Lt-Col John Adolphus took part in the China War.


1901 - Lt Colonel Francis Middlecoat (61) is living at 148 Addison Gardens, Hammersmith, London.



The good Lt Colonel Francis is living "reunited" with wife Mary and three of their 10 or so children, but there is no servant - bit of a culture shock after India, but one suspects the Middlecoats were not as well heeled as the Burtons, especially after the legal fees involved in the separation that wasn't.



27 November 1906 from Liverpool to India




John Adolphus and "Gem" return from leave in the UK on board the "Castalia" (via Bombay).  Maybe this was the "one time" referred to by Ethel that she saw her parents?



1907 - Gem, a young looking 36, at a picnic in Bellary (India).  Bellary was a major military station in British India.  It is in the middle of southern India - about half way between Chennai (Madras) and Mumba (Bombay) - a hot arid place! 


The handwriting under the photo belongs to daughter (and Adrian's grandmother) Ethel - 17 at the time of the pic.  Was she out in India then?.











3 July 1910





Surgeon Lt Col J A Burton arrives at Tilbury from Colombo on the "China" to start his London based retirement.


A bit later in 1910 he and his family gather at Walton on the Naze (SE Essex - extreme Estuary country).



In the photo: Cyril (16), Ethel (20 and Adrian's grandmother), Lt Col John Adolphus Burton (56 and just retired from the Indian Medical Service), Gem Burton (Middlecoat) (39) and Charlie (21).  Jimmy Fletcher was there as well in the role of Charlie's medical student mate rather than Ethel's future hubbie - in fact he probably took the photo!.



The career of Lt Col John Adolphus Burton




is published as entry 1466 in D.G.Crawford's "Roll of the Indian Medical Service"



1911 - The Burtons have returned from India to live at 21 Victoria Road, Upper Norwood, SE London



Now retired Lt Colonel John Adolphus (56), wife Georgiana Ernstin (Middlecoat) (still only 39), children Charlie (22, a London Hospital medical student and best friend of Frank Rex Fletcher, who is to join the RAMC), Ethel (20, to be Mrs Rex Fletcher) and Cyril (16, to be very very large indeed later in life) and a maid complete the household.


1911 - The Middlecoats have moved in a bit - to 20 Melrose Gardens, Fulham (near Shepherds Bush).




Two Middlecoat "kids" (Lucy - 35 and David - 27) are still at home.


Lt Col Francis Middlecoat dies in Lambeth in 1922 aged 83, and Mary dies in Wandsworth in 1928 aged 78.  They would presumably have been at the wedding of their grand-daughter Ethel Burton in 1915 (see photo of larger group).



1914 Terry Gelardi and Dr Charlie Burton.


Charlie was Jimmy Fletcher's best mate at London Hospital Medical School.  Which was how Jimmy met Charlie's sister Ethel (who he later married).


Charlie used to visit Folkestone with Jimmy, and there they met Theresa Gelardi and her sister "Beadie".  They were the daughters of Ernesto Gelardi, who had a small hotel in Folkestone.


Ernesto's brother Gustav was manager of Folkestone's Grand Hotel, favourite weekend haunt of King Edward VII and, inter alia, Mrs Keppel. It is said that he was "a friend of the King" and that the King was instrumental in organizing Gelardi's move from the London Walsingham Hotel to Folkestone.


Link to today's Grand


Terry and Charlie married on 28 July 1915 -  Terry wore a dress that made her look positively dowdy middle aged, so we opted to use this pic instead!


Charlie was a decorated Captain in an RAMC Field Ambulance Unit on the Western Front - more about him below.





1915 - Marriage - Sunday 15 August




Ethel Burton (25) marries Frank Rex (Jimmy) Fletcher (also 25) - at the unmemorable Parish Church of St Mary Magdalene, Milton, Hampshire. 


The only grandparents still alive were the Middlecoats - our guess is that three generations of them occupy the 4 seats on the left.


We have a bigger version for face spotters !


September 1917




Ethel Fletcher (Burton) and Terry Burton (Gelardi) (Charlie's wife) photographed at breakfast on 6 September 1917,

photo by Ethel's husband Jimmy who had just bought a new camera!



Ethel (left) and Terry (right) with cameras and Jimmy's sister Gwen Fletcher (later Kingdon)

and mother Elizabeth Fletcher (née Procter)



14 August 1922 Lt Col Francis Middlecoat (83) dies in Lambeth


16 March 1928 Mary Henrietta Middlecoat (Locke) (77) dies in Wandsworth




Many of the BMD dates for the Francis Middlecoat family are contained in this Madras Military Fund document.



Charles Frank ("Charlie") Burton (1889 - 1942 (53))

born in Rangoon on 16 January 1889



Ethel's elder brother Dr Charles Frank Burton was serving in Field Ambulance Units on the Western Front when the photos of his wife Terry were taken.  He collected an MC and two mentions in despatches, and stayed in the RAMC after WWI finished (this cartoon of him is dated 1935).  He lost his life during the evacuation of Singapore in 1942.  Terry was evacuated in a separate boat and arrived home with a sole artefact from her earlier life - a silver teapot.




1 January 1924 - John Adolphus Burton dies in Wallington aged 69. 




Link to John Adolphus Burton Obituary in the British Medical Journal.




"Gem" lives on for another 30 years (d 1953 aged 82) - latterly in a cigarette smoke filled basement flat in Dene Court in Folkestone (Jimmy & Ethel's house).  In the 1920s and 30s she looked after Jimmy and Ethel's son Michael, and Charlie and Terry's children Joan and Peter whilst their parents were on overseas army postings. 



"Gem" Burton (1871 - 1953 (82)) at Dene Court, Folkestone, late 1940s



Link to Photos of more Recent Ancestors of Angela Williams (Fletcher) & Adrian Fletcher