52 Ancestors #29 – Music – Margaret Williams

Margaret Cripps nee Williams

Music…this weeks prompt has me thinking (with a hint from a friend) about all the music played at church…weddings…funerals…and Sunday service hymns. A place where a bible and a prayer book would be used. I’ve already written a newsletter about the only musical ancestor that I know of in Alice Zenobia Lymburner nee Campbell here and here. So this week, I want to tell you about a Bible that I recently acquired, thanks to my 2nd cousin Alison Wood nee Gregory.

A genealogist/family historian’s dream is to be given a Bible from the past as often in the early years, they were used to record the births and deaths of family members and can be a boost to one’s research. So I went all gah gah, when I was given this Bible. It is a treasure to have and I will treasure it.

This Bible belonged to my great grandmother Margaret Cripps/Haigh nee Williams. Margaret is the 3rd child of Owen (1826-1888) and Mary Williams nee Jones (1831-1909), a mine manager brought out from Wales to manage the Wannernooka mine in the district of Northampton. Owen and Mary arrived on the Hamilla Mitchell 6 April 1859, with two sons, Thomas (1854-1927) and John Owen (1856-1918). Margaret was born soon after their arrival on 3 September 1859. It has been said she was born in a cow pen as there was no ready accommodation for them when they first arrived and was the first white girl born in Northampton.

Margaret first married to Allen Haigh in 1876 and they had 3 children, Mary Ann (1877-1877), Elizabeth (1878-1962 – married George Bandy) and Selena (1878-1949 – married William Drage). Allen died of pneumonia while working on the railways, 3 August 1880. Margaret met and married Charles Cripps on the 25th January 1882 at the Gwalla Church in Northampton. He was 28 at the time and Margaret 23.

The Bible was given to Margaret before she married Allen Haigh if the date on the inside front cover is correct; Northampton, Dec 24, Margaret Williams her Book Given to her By her Mother for a Christmas Box in 72. On the left, someone has rewritten the words in pencil, adding ‘ in the year 1872’.

Inside the back cover the entries read:
Elizabeth Haigh Born on the 11 April 1878
The next word is hard to read, it appears to be “lanor”. (From the family history we do know that there is a Selena Mary so maybe this is “Salanor”. Margaret is also of Welsh descent, so that could be the reason for the spelling)) Born on the 29 June 1880
Tomas Charles, Born on the 5th December 1882, Tuesday ten oclock am. (Great to have a day and time of birth!)
Hannor Cripps Born on the 16 June 1884 (This would be Hannah)
David W Cripps Born on Sunday 23 May 1886
Sarah Jane Born Sept 9, 18 (1888 as per my records)
Sunday …. oclock.
The right had page reads:
Miss M A Williams was Born July 14 1863
Miss M A Williams was Born July 14 1863 (repeated) and again in pencil.
A quirky note in pencil reads Miss M Williams was Born Sometime.
This entry is repeated again: Miss M A Williams was Born July 14 1863
The next entry is hard to read but looks like Elizabeth Cripps El January 5 1895
January 5 1895. Was there another child born and died after Ernest J Cripps 1893 and Maggie in 1896 named Elizabeth? I do not know of this and it does not show up in the registrar’s records.

Cripps Williams Bible 24 Dec 1872 inside back cover (2)

Inside the back cover, the page, although jagged around the edges, is reasonably decipherable. It reads:
Mr Allan Haigh the Husband of Mrs Margaret Haigh now died the 6 of August 1888 age 26. Mary Ann Haigh the child of A and M Haigh now was Born on the 18 of March 1877 now died on the 6 of April 1877.
The last entry is a little harder to decipher, it looks like:
Rebecca Cripps (only because I know that to be a name of a great aunt) and maybe it’s been repeated on the next line, Rebbeca Em Cripps Born 20 December 1890. (we know her name to be Rebecca Emily)
Ernest C Born March 9, 1893.

Cripps Williams Bible 24 Dec 1872 inside back cover

Lying loose within the pages was this little snippet. It reads:
James Glass Married April 28, 1913.
Eaton married 8 May 1913
(in pencil E Lucas married 29 January)
?? left home 11 June (in pencil – marid on the 30—)

Cripps Williams Bible 24 Dec 1872 piece of paper insert

Sue White nee Hasleby has helped with the following information:
James Glass married Annie Shreeve 29 April 1913
Frank David Eaton married Hilda May Hosken 8 May 1913
Ethel May Lucas married Herbert Victor Johnson 29 January 1913

Whether any of these names meant anything to Margaret or perhaps Elsie Normington, I can’t be sure. We believe Elsie was the owner of this Bible after her mother passed away and passed it on to Elsie Gregory nee Rayner, a granddaughter of Margaret.

Another item that fell out of the Bible when I was leafing through the pages, was this photograph of the grave and headstone of Charles Cripps and Margaret. They died within 6 months of each other in 1923 and this photo shows that it was taken soon after the placement of the headstone and rails as there are no other graves in the picture. Their grave is in the Northampton Cemetery, Onslow Street. Charles and Margaret Cripps have entries in the Midwest WA Heritage Death Register here.


So even though I have been researching the family history for well over 30 years, I always get a buzz when something new comes ‘out of the blue’.

About Jenny MacKay

Just a person who is looking forward to retirement and enjoying the golden years!
This entry was posted in 52-Ancestors-52-Weeks, Blog, Cripps, Williams and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to 52 Ancestors #29 – Music – Margaret Williams

  1. Renae says:

    Thanks for the info, I’m also one of Owen and Mary’s descents and our family has lived there since.

  2. Well done proud owner…. and thanks for my input too. The photo of the new grave is a treasure especially with so few other headstones around and the fence in the background. We were always told (or at least I think we were) not to venture into the cemetery and certainly not take photos but I always loved wandering around. Nowadays it is quite accepted but I think there was a period when it was considered taboo unless you were visiting a relative in remembrance. My children say they remember having picnics in cemeteries as I traced ancestors….We certainly did have our picnic lunch at the Jarrahdale cemetery one day when they were kids.

  3. tstatton says:

    How exciting for you to get that Bible! Amazing what people write inside the covers – especially in old Bibles. An interesting read once again Jenny.

    • Jenny MacKay says:

      It certainly was and to find that there may have been another baby, Elizabeth. I hadn’t seen that until I zoomed in on the photo when writing this today. So it paid big dividends to blog this.

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