Updated 4th March 2010

Sarah, the nurse in the 1901 census, and her family in Manchester went to New Jersey.  One journey they made was on the Teutonic leaving Liverpool on 20th September 1899.  Her sister, now a Mrs McCLELLAND and American,  was going to join her husband.  Only brother George was with them on this occasion and presumably stayed there because he is not on the 1901 UK census.  This comes from the Ellis island web site and those records include crew members; Alfred is listed several times on different ships in 1918/19.

An analysis of the US 1920 census on the Ancestry.com site  for the exact spelling of our surname shows four familes in New York state, and one each in Connecticut, Maine, Nevada and Michigan.

A1790  “Enumeration of the inhabitants of the town of Boston” USA  shows very clearly that one of them was “Mrs Gidman”; she was living by herself.   I have no further information about her but she may not have been from the UK.  Certainly at a later date we have the same spelling for a few people from Russia, Germany and Holland.

Perhaps one of the earliest  families from the UK to settle in the United States was in and around Warren & Barkhamsted, Litchfield, Connecticut after arriving in New York on 8th April 1849.  The family was Henry and Ann with  their children.   I tell their story on the page “Henry 1810”.

The only Australian ones I have any details of were in Victoria.  Joseph died in Northcote on 29th January 1928 age 72 giving a birth year around 1856.  His death register entry states his parents were Daniel, a coal miner, and Hannah nee LONGSHAW.  In 1875 he married Emma nee JOHNSON who also died in Victoria, aged 74 in 1930. They are in the 1901 UK census with their family at Kidsgrove, Staffs but  the couple emigrated in October 1913.  Their two youngest sons had left the country together exactly a year prior to them -  Walter born 1886 and William Henry born 1888 - and lived to a good age, both of them dying in Victoria in 1971.  Joseph’s death register states the names and ages of his children, including  deceased Daniel and James  - see the Miners page under Deaths below.. 

The late Robin Carroll in Brisbane sent me this picture of a workshop for  “Gidman Tyres” at Hatton Vale, fifty miles west of there.  She located a relative of the owner in Brisbane.  They are from Victoria and so they may be descendants of Joseph.


There are two Attestation papers for volunteers to the Canadian Overseas Expeditionary Force in World War 1.

One for  Sidney Herbert Pownall on 10th May 1915 when he was 37.  His wife was Elizabeth and she lived in Montreal.  He also stated on his Attestation Paper that he had previously served in the 8th Imperial Yeomanry for 1yr 199 days.  His birth was registered in Macclesfield and, although I do not have him on the 1901 census, he married Elizabeth Ann PAGE 3rd Qtr 1903 in Prestwich district.    His father Alfred married Elizabeth POWNALL in 1876.  Two of his brothers also carried the middle name Pownall although one died in infancy.  I should like to know if Sidney went to Europe and returned safely.

The other Paper is dated 4th September 1915  when Joseph Hamman  enlisted aged 20 [he returned to Canada on 25th Feb 1919, described as a Farmer].  His next of kin is his mother Sylvia living in Purple Springs, Alberta.  She and her two children, Joseph and Sylvia, went to Canada on 2nd June 1910 to join her brother Alfred HAMMAN.  Her husband Joseph had died in England in 1903 at 39.  For more on this branch see the Canada and Knutsford pages.


Roller skating had it’s introduction in America some time before the outbreak of the Civil War. An American article says in 1852 a Joseph patented a skate with coupled wheels in the middle and single wheels at each end.   However another article says he was English and had to wait 30 years to see them in use on skates. The London Gazette of 7th January 1853 contains a Provisional Patent Protection No 1176 given to Joseph of Prescot [Lancashire], House agent, for a “skate”.
In 1851 there is no one with that employment but in Prescot a Joseph 28 was an Attorney’s clerk; in 1861 it is probable he was a Watchmaker in Liverpool.  So it is likely that he was not in America as I had assumed from the article.

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