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Doreen Norton writes:

Ever since I was a young child, I have thought of myself as a member of the Parkhouse family - one of the families from which I am descended. All the women are short, well-endowed, and many, like my mother and my daughter,  inherited auburn hair.

Karen Byrne

Karen Byrne, née Norton

George Long

Ellen Stentiford

I knew for certain that I did not resemble any of my father's family who came from London, but as I grew older, I came to look more like my mother and her younger sisters. My mother's father was John Snell Parkhouse from Ashreigney. He married Elizabeth Ann Long from Chawleigh, the daughter of George and Ellen (née Stentiford) Long.

John Parkhouse

Elizabeth Ann Long


A young second cousin of mine prompted my interest in family history; he was never able to get his head around the relationship between his grandfather and myself.

So I set myself the task of putting it all down on paper with as many photos as I could find of every family member. They say a picture is worth a thousand words so I thought that by doing it that way, he would be able to put faces to names and that the whole thing would be more understandable and a lot more interesting.

Charles Isaacs

Gertrude Parkhouse



It was while I was assembling this collection of photographs and information that I became interested in where the Parkhouse family came from, and who our ancestors were.

Initially I did very well and found that the first relevant record in the Ashreigney Parish Records was dated 1700. The next family that I looked for were the Longs. My grandmother's father - George Long - was born in South Tawton, and it is there that his family can be traced back to the 1700s.

I imagine that it was the search for work that brought him to Chawleigh where he met and married "Ellen" Stentiford.

Reginald Norton

Doreen Isaacs

Now this is where I met my first stumbling block. Every document I examined named my Great Grandmother as "Ellen". So I started to look for "Ellen " Stentiford's birth certificate and it took many hours of searching before I discovered that she was baptised "Victoria Ann Ellen Stentiford, born 1 Dec 1844 in Coldridge - Mother's name Ann".* This was the next stumbling block. Which Ann? The search was frustrating so I put everything to one side.



*You can read more about Ellen Stentiford in Issue 20


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