BOAT FAMILIES

of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and connected waterways

Burscough Canal


WELCOME to our updated website - launched 6th April 2015.

SITE INFORMATION

At the launch of the site, in March 2010, there were more than 3,000 names, mostly families of canal workers on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, all connected by marriage, in one tree, Canal Family 1.

Since then this tree has grown to more than 44,700 people, and it has spread from Lancashire and Yorkshire into Cheshire, Staffordshire and beyond. Two more trees, Canal Family 2 with 95 people (merged with Canal Family 1 on 6th June 2014 and deleted) and Canal Family 3 with 24 people, were started in June 2012.

A fourth tree, Canal Family 4 (273 people), was created on 3rd October 2013, but was soon merged into Canal Family 1 and deleted. A new tree, Canal Family 5 (120 people), was created on 8th February 2014, and another, Canal Family 6 (124 people), on 8th July 2017. This was merged into Canal Family 1 on 26th Oct 2017 and deleted.

Canal Family 7 (initially containing 523 names) was added on Nov 10 2017 and soon updated to 1,063 people. Another tree, intended to become Canal Family 8 with 952 people, was found to be linked so both these trees were merged into Canal Family 1 on 25th January 2019.

We do not knowingly include living people without family permission. The information has been compiled from the private research of ODFHS members and other contributors, from the websites of Lancashire On-line Parish Clerks, Lancashire BMDs, the Censuses - and increasingly from parish records on Ancestry, Findmypast and FamilySearch (IGI). Some details are inevitably more complete than others, but where copies of birth, marriage or death certificates are held, this is indicated in an individual's Life History by the letters BC, MC or DC.

We welcome contributions to help expand existing trees. Additional data or amendments can be emailed to boatfamilies[at]odfhs.email or by using the contact us link - please indicate sources, especially if you have verification by certificates etc. We can accept data in any form convenient to you, but if you have a tree of three or more generations we would appreciate receiving it as an attachment in GEDCOM format to the same address. (Your family history program will have an option to export a GEDCOM tree, which can be sent as an email attachment.)

SOFTWARE

This website is compiled using The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding, v.12.0 (written by Darrin Lythgoe 2001-2019 ©). Note that clicking the link at the bottom of each page (to the TNG website) will take you away from this site.

Ormskirk & District
Family History Society


Boat Families Website


The Society is indebted to the small group of dedicated enthusiasts who have developed this site. Using this site and the other ODFHS products; such as the CD of Burscough Boat Families, should enable you to discover many of your ancestors.
Bill Huyton, Chairman ODFHS, March 2011.


The purpose of this site is to assist researchers whose ancestors worked on the Leeds-Liverpool Canal & associated waterways, especially in South-West Lancashire and Cheshire, and more recently in Yorkshire east of Leeds. Lower down this column there is more information on how to submit questions and family trees for inclusion.

HOW TO USE THIS SITE

Use the Surnames link (top right) to see a list of main names in all trees, with an option to select a specific name from the alphabetic panel above. You can search for a particular person by using the search box, or you can see names in specific trees by changing 'all trees' to, eg, 'canal family 3' etc. At various places on the site you will see a small tree icon, which will show the family tree of your chosen individual. You can click on any name shown to reveal their details. Once you have chosen the first name it is possible to navigate that entire tree. Returning to the Group Names page will allow you to visit another tree.

PLEASE NOTE: The search box on the right is a simple search on Canal Family 1. For many more options and to search all trees together please go to the Advanced Search page choose from the various drop-down boxes.

UPDATE HISTORY

More information relating to the updates shown on the right can be found in the Update History files which can be viewed by going to the MEDIA link above and selecting DOCUMENTS.

COMMENTING ON & ADDING TO THE SITE

If you have any questions or comments about the information on this site, please contact us. We look forward to hearing from you. Click on Info and Contact Us.

DISCLAIMER

We have spent a great deal of time in building & populating this site. We have made every effort to produce a site that is accurate & easy to use. However No warranty is given, or implied.


SOURCES

We are grateful to have so many free sources of information: Lancashire Archives, Preston; the London FamilySearch Centre, whose microfilms are now at the Society of Genealogists HQ in London; UKBMD; Lancashire OnLine Parish Clerks, and others. Our researchers also subscribe to the Ancestry and Findmypast websites.

Ainscough Flour Mill


LATEST UPDATES

A summary of our newest tree Canal Family 9, developed in conjunction with the Leeds and Liverpool Canal Society, is in Media/Documents/Benjamin Curry Walls.

Canal Family 1:
8 July 2019 . . . V100
New Total: 44,763 individuals
New Names: Briers 12, Wiswall 4
Main increases: Lightfoot +77; Tarbuck +66; Summerfield +37; Webster +26; Jones, Sandbach +22; Hughes +20; Williams +18; Parr, Robinson, Williamson +17; Rowland +14; Hatton, Spencer +13; Bennett +11

The 100th update to our site is one of the largest, adding more than 650 people to our main family tree, with most increases being among canal and river watermen in the Northwich, Runcorn, Warrington and Sankey areas.

Another link between West Lancashire and Cheshire boatmen comes with the marriage in 1880 of William, son of Thomas Webster of Lydiate and Elizabeth Lamb of Ormskirk, to Jane Cattrall, a Runcorn waterman's daughter. Their daughters Florence and Elizabeth Webster married brothers John and Samuel Bennett, Cheshire bargemen.

Our new names involve children of John Briers and Ann Smith of St Helens, whose daughter Ann married John Williamson and whose sons were Liverpool boatmen. Also father and son Francis and Walter Wiswall, canal company engineers of Wigan and Manchester, who connect through Walter's marriage to Blanche Rowland, daughter of a Runcorn waterman and shipowner.

Canal Families 2, 4, 6, 7 & 8 have all now been merged into our main tree, Canal Family 1 (details, see left hand column).

Canal Family 3:
29 June 2012 ... V02
New total: 24 individuals
Main names: Denson, 12, Rimmer 7

Canal Family 5:
22 May 2015 ... V02
New total: 122 individuals
Main names: Ainscough 28, Mason 26, Fairclough 23

Canal Family 9:
2 March 2019 - 45 individuals
Main name: Walls 29



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