James Adams was born in Oxford 14 March 1827. He was christened at St Mary Magdalen, Oxford 14 March 1827. He had 6 siblings. His parents were James Adams and Mary Anne Perkins. His father James (1790-1850) was Butler at Worcester College, Oxford between 1817 and 1841.

He was already farming and living at the Manor House, Hampton Gay when he married Jane Mathews at Hampstead Norris, Berkshire on 21 June 1858. Jane’s family were first noted in Hampstead Norris in the 1400s. James & Jane had 7 children. Unfortunately, Jane died of Nephritis on 1st February 1871.

At the time of the 1871 census on 2nd April Elizabeth Jeken Elwin was staying at the Manor House, presumably to help with the children. I believe that Elizabeth was related to Jane (Her mother’s maiden name was Mathews) but I have yet to find the connection. James and Elizabeth married at St Giles on 5th March 1872. Elizabeth was the daughter of Jeken Elwin, a London Surgeon.

The marriage was not to last long as James died of Gout on 28th September 1872. He was buried at Hampton Gay on 4th October 1872. This left Elizabeth running the farm and bringing up the children. His will was proved by his brother Frederick and his wife Elizabeth. Effects under £3,000. The only thing that my mother knows of her Grandfather is that he was known as a ‘Gentleman Farmer’ and that he rode around in a phaeton (An open four-wheeled carriage for one or two horses).

Eldest son James was born at the Manor House, 20th March 1859 and Christened at St Giles on 17th April. He lived at the Manor House until at least 1881.  My Grandmother told my Mum that he sang in the Church choir until he was 21 years old. He didn’t get on with his step mother. James married May Violetta Amanda Hutt late 1896 in the Woodstock area. May was the daughter of Joseph Thomas Hutt of Kidlington and Frances Caroline Smith. Joseph at some time worked on the farm at Hampton Gay. James & May eventually moved to Hampton, Middlesex, where James died of ’flu’ in January 1922. James & May had 7 children. Second son Frank was born 25 September 1860 and christened at St Giles of 21st October.

The 1871 census finds him staying with his uncle William Adams, an Ironmonger in Chipping Norton High Street. By 1881 Frank was in Leicester, occupation listed as Ironmonger. He married Sarah Louisa Coles of Leicester in 1883. They had 5 children. By 1911 his occupation was described as “ironmonger’s Manager”. Frank died 4th March 1936. Mary Anne Adams was born at the Manor House 16th April 1862 and was christened at St Giles on 11th May. 1881 sees her at Halidon House School, Upton cum Chalvey, Slough, listed as a scholar. At the time of the 1891 census she is visiting James & Elizabeth Mathews in Chieveley, Berkshire. Her occupation was listed as ‘Ladies Companion’. Between 1901 & 1911 she was living at Newick Rectory, Lewes, Sussex. Occupation in 1911 was Housekeeper. Mary seems to have been the one to hold the family together. She certainly maintained contact with the family in Leicester and with my Grandmother in Hampton. She paid for my mother to go to a private junior school. She died on 15th May 1944. Frederick was born 12th July 1863 at the Manor House.

His Christening was on 9th August. At the time of the 1871 census he was with James & Elizabeth Mathews, in Chieveley, Berkshire. By 1881 he was living in High Street, Eton, an apprentice furniture dealer. Family records show the cause of death as Scarlet Fever. He died on 2nd November 1882. Elizabeth Jane was born on 8th September 1867 at the Manor House. She was christened on 4th April at St Giles. She died of Scarlet Fever on 9th November 1870. Percy Adams was born on 26th April 1865 at the Manor House. He was christened 21st May. He was at the Manor House in 1871. By 1881 he was living in Finsbury Square, London. He emigrated to New Zealand, where he stayed initially with his step mother’s brother William Jeken Elwin. He married Bridget Meagher and they had 2 children. He died 25th September 1954 in New Zealand.

Henry Adams was born on 4th March 1869 at the Manor House. He was christened 4th April at St Giles. He was at the Manor House until at least 1881. By 1891 he had moved with his step mother to ‘Fir Tree Villa’, Hermitage, Chieveley, Berkshire. Elizabeth was ‘living on her own means.’ Henry was a Dealer. By 1901 Henry had moved to Elm Farm, East Woodhay, where he is shown to be married to Edith and a Farmer & Coal Dealer. He suffered from night blindness. By 1911 he was the owner of a General Stores in Hermitage.

I can’t find a record for his marriage. They didn’t have any children. Henry died in 1927. James, Jane and their daughter Elizabeth’s grave can be seen in the Churchyard.



Special thanks to Shelia Chessman for the above information.