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Summerhills from Gloucestershire

  • 8 February 2011

I was able to find the link from Charlotte Summerhill to her parents, Stephen and Ann, only because of her younger brother, Isaac, being recorded twice on the 1851 census. He is listed as a visitor at his sister’s, whilst also being recorded at home with his parents.

This led me to Isaac’s baptism in Bilston, Wolverhampton and to other family members, including his parents who were both born in Gloucestershire.

Thanks to the Slimbridge parish register transcripts, FamilySearch and the excellent Forest of Dean Family History website, I’ve been able to get back a couple more generations as far as a marriage of Stephen Summerhill of Frampton to Sarah Cratchley in Slimbridge. I need to try to find Stephen’s birth/baptism.

To-do-list for this

  • Check Frampton parish registers c. mid 1750s for baptism of Stephen Summerhill


  • Hello!! We must be related, my ancestors were the Summerhill’s and were from Wilden. My great great grandmother Ethelinda Hawkins was born in Wilden in 1857 and her mother was Harriet Summerhill who was an agricultural labourer from Framlode and i believe was born in 1826, her dad was James Summerhill. Apart from this information i really dont know anything else about this side of my family, so if you have any idea where this fits in to perhaps your family it would be amazing to find out

    All the best!


    • Hi Lee

      I think I’ve at last found a link to your branch of the Summerhills.

      A researcher has found some SUMMERHILL baptisms in Saul for me, including the baptism of Harriet, daughter of James and Mary. Harriet was baptised on 1 May 1827 and her father’s occupation was given as ‘waterman’. Other siblings found were: Henry James Summerhill (bap. 28 Dec 1817, father’s occupation brass founder) Amos (bap. 6 June 1821, father’s occupation melter at brass works); Elizabeth (bap. 6 June 1824, father’s occupation waterman) and Selina (bap 7 June 1829, father’s occupation waterman).

      I’m not absolutely sure of the link yet, as I haven’t come across the marriage of James and Mary Summerhill. However, I strongly suspect that the James who is the father of Harriet is the same James who is brother to my 4x great grandfather Stephen Summerhill. This James was baptised on 16 May 1785 in Saul and I also have his burial there, aged 48, on 23 January 1834. This fits with Mary appearing as a widow on the 1841 census, living with her children Amos and Harriet.

      Interestingly, the 1861 census shows Richard and Harriet Hawkins apparently living next door to James and Charlotte Williams. Charlotte was a Summerhill, born in Saul, and would have been Harriet’s first cousin as her father was Stephen, brother to Harriet’s father James.

      Hope this helps. If I do come across the marriage of Harriet’s parents, I’ll let you know.

      • Hello there!

        My husband is a direct descendant of Henry James Summerhill (b. 1817) through his son, Joseph C Summerhill (b. 1861). Joseph emigrated to the USA in 1882.

        I’m trying to find info on an Isaac Summerhill, who emigrated to the USA around 1865. He was born about 1852. He lived in the Scranton, Pennsylvania area. Would you have any info on him?

        • Hello Elaine

          I have about 15 people called Isaac Summerhill in my tree, but none of them seem to have been born in the right year. I do, however, have a John Isaac Summerhill, born in Brockmoor, Staffordshire in 1852. I wonder if this could be the correct one? I have come across lots of examples in the family of people being known by their middle names rather than their first names.

          John Isaac was a son of Henry James Summerhill (1817-1897) and his first wife, Sarah Butcher (1822-1859). He was Joseph’s half-brother. I have him on census returns 1861-1871 in Wales, and 1881-1891 in Glasgow, before his arrival in New York in 1897.

          Does this sound likely?


  • Ref: Comment Summerhills from Goucestershire
    In a comment posted on 1st June 2011 there is mention of a Henry James Summerhill
    (bap 28 Dec 1817 father’s occupation brass founder) I think he is my great grandmother, Louisa (not sure of middle name could be Rufer) Summerhill’s
    father. Louisa was born in 1858 in Droitwich, Worcs. She had a sister Polly Alice Born in 1860 in Wolverhampton. My dates are a little hazy as I have not ratified information. That branch of the family remained in the metal industry becoming
    metal refiners, forming two major companies at the turn of the 1900’s. It ceased to be a family business in the 1960’s as it was sold to IMI.

    • Hello

      The only Louisa I have in the Summerhill tree is Louisa Richmond Summerhill, birth registered Jan-Mar 1856 in Wolverhampton. Louisa had three siblings: Thomas Henry (1854-1935), Alice Amelia (1857-1875) and Polly Angelina (1860-1910). Louisa married Henry Thomas James in 1877 and died in 1917.

      Louisa’s father was Henry Summerhill (1827-1907) and her mother was Sarah Richmond (1824-1877). Henry was the manager of the Osier Bed Iron Works in Horsley Fields, Wolverhampton until it closed in the 1880s. Henry appears to have been declared bankrupt in 1895.

      Henry’s father was Isaac Summerhill (1787-1847) who was born in Saul, Gloucestershire. The Henry James Summerhill mentioned in the comment above was the son of Isaac’s brother, James Summerhill (1785-1834) and was, therefore, Louisa’s father’s first cousin, and her first cousin once removed.

      I hope this helps,


      • I have just logged on to see your reply to my mail. Many thanks for the information. Interesting to know that Louisa’s father had been declared bankrupt. Louisa had 10 children with Henry Thomas James (one girl died after three days) the rest three girls and 6 boys all survived. The boys together with their grandfather and I believe their father (to a lesser degree) founded a metal refining business in 1903 initially on the site of what I believe had been a brick works – which came down through the Summerhill family – which flourished and was made a certain contribution in industry in both world wars to the war
        effort. In the second world war it was on a bombing ‘hit list’
        but escaped. I knew my Great Aunts but non of my Great Uncles who had all died including my Grandfather.You have given me the names of Louisa’s siblings some of which I didn’t know. Polly, I think ,was a Matron at Great Ormond Street Hospital. Our family association with the metal industries of The Midlands has come to an end. All very interesting, many thanks.

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