Families associated with the Stainforth Waterside
1800 - 1930

It seems many visitors to this site are interested in their family origins, especially those who's ancestors were keel folk and canal folk.
This is a list of names and details I have come across while searching for information about the canal and the people who lived there at the turn of the 19th century. This list has come from various sources, including Fred Schofield’s book, "Humber Keels and Keelmen".
If you have information which could be added to this page, then please write to me with the details.
I give my utmost thanks to all those who have already taken the time to write and share their family history with me.
Many thanks to those who have added to this list, particularly Peter Dumville. I will credit those parts submitted to this list to those who are kind enough to send me their information.

mailto: Stainforth waterside info

Barrass, Campbell, Carter, Chester, Dearnaly, Downing, Dyson, Fowler, Hastings, Hinchcliffe, Holmes,
Jackson, Jolliffe, Lillford, Moxon, Parish, Peck, Rhodes, Rowbottom, Schofield, Shirtcliffe / Shirtliffe, Silvester,
Wadsworth, Whiteley, Wilburn, Wilson, Worfok, Whitehead

PORT OF GOOLE REGISTER Some of the ships built in the Stainforth area with Turgoose connections


Keels on the canal - The story of Stainforth's waterways.


Richard and Samuel Barrass were the first members of this family to join the waterside community. They were allocated a strip of land near Stainforth Bridge, on the West Bank, over which they later claimed ownership by means of the enclosure award.
In 1840, John Barrass was apprenticed to John Dearnaley, a sailmaker of South Bank.
John Barrass’s son, George, was the last Stainforth sailmaker. He died in 1907.
Ernest Barrass was a man of many means. He started work as a joiner, later becoming an undertaker, and then finished his working days as a shopkeeper.
Aaron Barrass was a local preacher after he retired from being a keelman.
There was also Fred Barrass, of whom I know only that he too was a keelman.

Peter Dumville:
(From an article in Doncaster Gazette 1967)
Long John Silver makes leg from Driftwood
In this interview with Horace Barrass (78), Horace tells Joan Dean how he became known as "Peggie" to his closest friends, through his preference for a self carved wooden leg over a NHS prosthetic limb. Horace goes on to recall his childhood as a member of one of Stainforth's keeling families, with his three brothers and three sisters, who spent most of their young lives afloat.
"We would set off at 3 a.m., and by the time we reached our destination, the school was closed. I never attended day school, but a little mission Sunday school on Sheffield Wharf used to take us in. I can write, but the spelling is my own. I put it down as it sounds".

(From an article in the Doncaster Star 1994)
Residents hope for a village after hooligans
Under a banner headline reading "On a more even keel", (pun intended) Peter Tuffrey interviews Norman Barrass.
After a brief Stainforth history lesson, Norman tells of his father's hardship as a keelman on the Stainforth waterway. Remarking on his father's appalling eyesight, Norman says, "He and his brother would haul the keel themselves to save the expense of hiring a horse. While father was hauling the keel, his sister or someone else would lead the way so that he didn't fall in the water".

His father went on to be a boiler fireman at the newly opened colliery, an employment no easier than that of a keelman.
In the interview, much too long to print in full here, Norman goes on to tell of his own life and the changes he noticed within the village.

Linda Pellatt wrote with the following info:
I have a Barrass who was a keel man and sailed with his family from Stainforth to Hull. His Keel was Thomas and his son Leslie was born aboard her in 1914 while at Queens Dock Hull. His name was Walker Barrass mother Sarah (nee Laycock).
Walker was born 1865 Stainforth son of George and Mary Barrass.
George was born 1828 Stainforth and they also had the following children.
Fred b 1862 Stainforth
Jane 1865 Stainforth
William b 1858 Stainforth.
In the 1881 census Walker is on the vessel Exert.
If by any chance you come across any pictures of either vessel I would appreciate a copy if possible.

Campbell / Eastwood My great-great-grandfather, Mark Campbell was a waterman (master mariner). He was born in Brotherton in Yorkshire in 1821 and died in 1885. In the 1861 census he was the master of the Alice,1 which was coasting off Goole. His wife and two children were also on board and two crewmen (mates). In the 1881 census he is on board the Villliage Flower No 58726 in London Middlesex. On board are his son Mark jnr (Bargeman Mate Mariner) and another seaman together with his wife and four children. The census shows that seven other vessels were moored here. They were 'sailing barges' with one or two men on board. I found a sloop named Alice on your Records in the Port of Goole Registers and wondered if this was the same as the Alice 1. Mark's first wife Mary Eastwood came from another Brotherton barge family. The name of the vessel Alice indicates that Mark or his family may have owned this vessel as his mother and one of his daughters was named Alice but this may have been a coincidence. I wondered if anyone in Stainforth could shed any light on the vessels or the Campbell/Eastwood families. Any information would be most welcomed.
Margaret Gill - Fremantle, West Australia

The following was sent in by Anne Murch:
I am descended from a John Carter 1791- 1841 who was decribed as a waterman and mariner of Stainforth. He had a son William born Hatfield 1818 who became a master mariner owning his own ship the sloop Currier built at Worbro Dale by Abraham Windle and registered 1842 at Goole. By that time he was living at Thorne and later left there for Hull before becoming a Humber and Goole Pilot, eventually drowning in the Humber in 1869. I hope this is of interest. I believe there were still Carters who were associated with the river and canal living in Thorne in the 20th century.


The Chester brothers, Albert and George lived on the East Bank.
Albert was the owner of the keel, "British Oak", and George was master of the keel, "Parade 7", which was based at Thorne.

Peter Dumville:
George Chester lived in the detached house on the left hand side of the road as you go down East Bank. His brother Albert lived in an adjoining house which has been demolished. George had 3 sons; George, Ernest and Bernard. When Bernard left the property the Phillips(coal merchants) eldest daughter acquired the property.

Dearnaley John Dearnaley set up his sail making business in premises on the South Bank in 1840.
Downing Ernest and Robert Downing were brothers who lived on the South Bank.
Ernest was the local preacher, and was well known as an adept fiddle player. He owned the keel, "Samaritan".
Whereas Robert was not well known for his talents with a musical instrument, he was regarded as something of a maestro when it came to whistling a tune, hence his nicknames of "Whistler" or "Whistling Bob". Robert owned the keel, "Welfare".

John Dyson

My maternal side were Dysons (farmers). The family linked by marriage to John Dyson the keelman. Tessa Fifield

Fowler Sam Fowler lived on the West Bank and had a keel called, "Alpha". His eldest son, Clarence, lived in the old sail loft on Stainforth Landing, but in 1930 he became the owner of a fish & chip shop on Station Road. In 1958 the ownership of the shop was passed down to Clarence’s son, Gordon, who ran the shop for many years until his retirement in the early 1980’s.

John Hastings retired from being a keelman to take up residence at Stainforth High Bridge, where he was Bridgekeeper.

Peter Dumville:
Mr Jas Hastings died in July 1932, aged 90. He was a keelman, as was his father before him, and between them they worked the canal between Sheffield and Hull for more than 100 years.

aso see Jackson

Brothers Herbert and Jack (Backa Jack) Hinchcliffe resided on the East Bank with their father. Herbert owned the keel, "Tibby", and Jack owned the keel, "Unique".

Hi my name is Karen Lonsdale. My great grandmother was Ann Fish born 1841 at Thorne. She married William Hinchsliff in 1863. Her parents were Thomas Fish and Sarah?. I have found her on the 1851 and 1861 living in Back Street Thorne with her grandmother Sarah Chambers (pauper). I would like to know her mother’s maiden name. I believe it may be Sarah Chambers, same as her grandmother. I believe her grandmother was a Turgoose who married Robert Chambers. Can you help at all

Holmes William (Billy) Holmes lived on the East Bank. He owned the sloop, "Shamrock".

Can anyone help? I'm looking for relations of my grandma Nellie Jackson b1911, East Bank. Her father was Arthur Hinchliffe Jackson, a waterman, and her mother was Florence Evelyn Pepper. I believe my grandma was one of possibly 13 children and I'm trying to trace any relatives in any of these families. At one time Arthur lived at the Carpenters Yard and later in life worked as a keeper on a lifting bridge on the canal. Just as a matter of interest, my grandma Nellie worked in service locally for the Whitehead family. Does anyone know where this might have been and who the family were? Any information very welcome.

Rose Whitfield - (see STH Forum - Family History section)
Jolliffe William Jolliffe - owner of the keel, "Garland"
Lillford Hello, I am looking for information about the Lillford families in Yorkshire. I know that some of them were keel folk and wondered whether you had any information on them. Kind regards, Yvonne Taylor (email address supplied)

I don't have much information about the Moxon family, other than they lived and worked on Stainforth's waterside.

Christine Hemsworth:
The Moxon's are associated with Stainforth from way back and are mariners, Some lived in Thorne but there are plenty of them on the census returns right back to 1851 and probably before, there are some in the cemetery there. They, along with the other oldies, the Hinchcliffe and the Shirtliffes, were sail makers and all intermarried at some point. You find children such as Alsop Moxon and Hasting Hinchliffe keeping the two names together. In Thorne cemetary you can walk around the graves and you can pick out the ones with anchors on them.


The Parish’s were a large family who lived on the waterside for a great many years. I believe the eldest of this family was John Parish, who lived on Fishlake Nab.
William Parish was known around the canal and riverside as "Old Bill", or "Whisker Parish".

Peter Dumville:
Mr John Thomas Parish of Osborne House, Field Road died in October 1930, he was a keelman for years and had 4 sons and 4 daughters.

I knew that my family, the Parish's, came from Stainforth. My great grandfather owned two Humber keels and when he died they were passed to two of his sons. One, the 'United' went to his eldest son Alfred, my grandfather. I have a black & white photo of the United sailing on the Humber on my bedroom wall. I was told the photo came second place in a photography competition at the time. My grandfather sold the United and bought a house in Hull with his proceeds and became a coal shoveller on Hull docks. I come from Hull, but have lived up in Scotland for the last 20 years. I was excited to see your references to the Parish family on your website, and especially to see Christine Hemsworth's brief reference to the building of the United - I assume that the Alfred Parish she makes brief reference to was my great grandfather. Nick Parish


Walter Pexton Peck (Peckerson?) - owner of the keel "Faith"

I am a direct descendent of William Walter Pexton Peck of Stainforth (I am his great great granddaughter), I believe that you have his name down as Peckerson? I thought you would be interested to know that he married a Harriet Rusby and that the reason for his name being double barrelled was that his mothers name was Pexton and his fathers name was Peck. He was also the owner of the Humber keel ‘the Faith’. Emma Williamson


Brian M Schofield wrote in November 2006

Just returned to your site after a long break.
I am William Walter Pexton Peck's ggrandson
1901 census lists him as an "Oil miller" And he was a Keelman and owner - see Fred Schofield's book. Family history yields the following :-

Jehovah's Witness, well known for leaving behind literature after a visit.
Originating from Beverley(?) 1901 census b Sculcoates Hull . His wife Harriet was from Stainforth.
Pupil at Hull Trinity House Navigation School.
Very deaf. later known as "Peck"
Possibly the first person to fit an engine to a dumb barge.
In later life, lived with daughter Annie.
4 older sisters and 4 younger sisters

I remember him quite well. I once met him in the middle of Hull by Queens Gardens and had a long chat, plus several visits to Stainforth to him and his daughter Annie.
Most family histories miss out his daughter Lydia 1900-01.
I cannot recall meeting his sisters.
I attach a photo, I believe at Thorne Fair.
(click on picture for larger image)

Brian M Schofield CITP MBCS MSc
web: http://www.bmschofield.com


William Walter Pexton Peck
Rhodes I am researching my grandad's family tree. "Rhodes" i have found through the census returns from 1841 to 1901 that they were Foreman Barge ? Dredgers & living on East Bank at Stainforth at various times from 1841 to 1901. There would always be at least one family living there & another in the centre of Doncaster, Frenchgate. The head of the family was William Rhodes born about 1761, whose son's were John, Robert & William, (that i know of). John, born 1810 had a son Robert, born 1845, who married Mary Sales & had 10 children. One of whom was my Gt grandfather, George Rhodes, born about 1901/02. He married Matilda Orton & they had 13 children. Almost all of the male members of the Rhodes family at some time or another worked & lived on the canal.
Carol Bilton

My Great G Grandpa was John Rowbottom who in the 1881 Census appears as a keelman with his wife and some of his children on board the Vessel the Nancy in port at Hull. John was born in Stainforth and the children were born between Hull and Wakefield.The family kept using the canals until 1930. John was also a canal boat proprietor. One of John's sons was my great grandpa Hugh, who lived with his aunt and uncle the Dennatts in Wakefield in 1881Census. As there was no room on the boat. Hugh went to work on the railways, and so did my Grandfather John Jennings Rowbottom and the rest of the family.
Please could anybody help me find out more aboat the bargee side of my family . Marie Clark nee Rowbottom

Hi my name is Ann Walden nee Rowbottom, My father William Herbert Rowbottom was born in 1917 and died 1966. His father was Herbert Rowbottom born 1869 died 1941 approx. His grandfather was John rowbottom born on the Nancy . His great grandfather was John Rowbottom, his great grandmother was Heneretter no maiden name. John came from Stainforth Yorkshire .


Fred Schofield’s book, "Humber Keels and Keelmen" is indeed a wonderful piece of work. Anyone who has even the slightest interest in this subject won’t find a better source than this. Filled from cover to cover with anecdotes and observations, and packed with diagrams, drawings and photographs, this book is a delight to read and the most comprehensive source of information anyone could wish for.
ISBN 0-86138-059-2
In his book, Fred tells of Stainforth during his childhood, at the turn of the last century, and of his family who lived and worked on the Stainforth & Keadby Canal.


The Shirtliffe family ran their sail making business from their East Bank premises.
William, their eldest son, became landlord of the Station Inn.
Tom Shirtcliffe lived on the east bank and owned the keel, "Primrose".

Christine Hemsworth:
Olive (nee Hastings) was buried on the 19th of January and the passing bell was rung for her. This was done at the cost of one shilling an hour. D. Gambles a local builder opened the vault which incurred another five shillings, with two shillings and fourpence being charged for the grave digging,and one extra shilling for the extra work involved in this, the total came to nine shillings and fourpence
the memorial reads:
In affectionate rememberance of William Shirtliffe of Stainforth who died December 20 1875 aged 71 years. Also of Olive beloved wife of the above who died January 15th 1876 aged 70 years.

Graham Jones
William Shirtliff (not Shirtliffe) , born 1805 in Hull was my great great grandfather and married Olive Hastings of Hatfield at Hatfield Church , April 23rd 1830 .   I believe they had 9 children including William, my great grandfather, who was born at Goole, February 7th 1833 .  He married Elizabeth Duckles Cawood at Mexborough Church in 1856 and they had 9 children, one of whom was Tom Shirtliff (not Shirtcliffe) as mentioned in the Keel family website.  Tom, obviously my grandfather, was a keel owner and one of his first vessels being Primrose which was launched at Stainforth in 1903.  Attached is a photo of the launch.  In the Post Office Directory of 1857 William is listed as being a sailmaker and also the licensee of the Station Hotel, Stainforth.  In the 1851 Census his father William is listed as being a sailmaker.

The Shirtliff family lived at East Bank, Stainforth, but Tom eventually moved to Hull and expanded his keel business.  He subsequently moved on to lighters and one was called "Annie" built about 1876, another was "Cupero" built about 1900, a third one was named "Ellen" built in 1904 and in 1914 he had a steel vessel built known as Shirtliff's No. 4.  Tom died in 1946 but the business continued under his son, Edgar.  One of their employees was Joe Brackenbury who I believe came from Stainforth but also moved to Hull .

Tom had a brother, William Cawood Shirtliff, born in Stainforth 1866, and who married Adelaide Silvester who I believe was one of the Silvester family mentioned in the Keel Family web site.  Her parents were Tomas and Maria and I would welcome any information there may be on them.  William had three sons, William Victor Shirtliff, Clarence, and Jesse Silvester Shirtliff all of whom were born at Stainforth but subsequently moved to Hull .

Tom married Ada Jane Kitchin of Stainforth whose father, Elijah Pickles Kitchen, his father and grandfather, all being farmers from the Kirk Bramwith area.  In the 1881 Census E.P. Kitchin was living at Trundle House, Fishlake.   

The Schofield book on Humber Keels shows several photos attributed to Miss E. Shirtliff who was my mother's sister.

I hope the above information is helpful.  If anyone in Stainforth has any further information about any of the Shirtliff family it would be appreciated.

Graham also sent this photograph of the keel 'Primrose' being launched in Stainforth in 1903. (Click to enlarge)
Graham's email is available upon request if you would like to share information with him.

Tom Silvester was the last landlord of the "Ship Inn", which was part of one of the cottages on the Fishlake side of the Don bridge. He left the Ship sometime around 1910 to take over at the "Anchor Inn" at Fishlake, and the Ship reverted back to being a residential cottage.

(The following information was researched by Eric & Patricia Wilburn) (See Wilburn)
Our ancestors Thomas Silvester b.1771 Barnby Dun who married Susannah Oughtibridge had 11 known children and his 3 surviving sons and their children who went on to work on the waterways were:

William Silvester b.1799 who married Sarah Styring had a son Richard b.1827 Stainforth
?on board 'Ann' a 46 ton sloop in 1860

Edward Silvester b. 1803 in Stainforth married Elizabeth Hastings, she was the daughter of George Hastings & Elizabeth Ripley. George Hastings and Edward Silvester were recorded on board 'Three Betseys' a 40 ton sloop in 1838 at Goole. Edward was also the landlord of the 'Rising Sun' at Thorne.

John Silvester b.1801 in Stainforth who married Sarah Hartley (our ancestors) was recorded as a Waterman / Coal Merchant. Two of his daughters married into the Wilburn family, Mary Ann Silvester b. 1824 married Charles Wilburn b. 1822 who was recorded as a Shipwright / Coal Merchant. And Ann Silvester b. 1838 married our ancestor Mark Wilburn b. 1835 in Stainforth, (Mark was recorded as a Grocer in Doncaster. )
John Silvester's only son John Silvester (jnr) b. 1836 married Ann Turgoose of Goole, daughter of Capt. William & Ann Turgoose, who was a ship owner and a member of the well known Goole family. John moved to Goole and managed the 'North Eastern Hotel' there where they lived for many years and raised their family, it is still there today and is now a town centre pub.

Wadsworth William Wadsworth, (Billy Waddy) had a keel called, "Energetic".

Sam Whitehead lived on the East Bank and owned the keel, "Blanche".

Sam Whitehead

Having found this site I would like to give some additional information about Samuel (Sam) Whitehead my grandfather who was born on 3 July 1873 at Swinefleet, Yorks and died on 26 December 1942 in Stainforth, Yorks.

It is very interesting to note how the keel family members married into other keel families.

He married Annie Elizabeth Shirtliff, daughter of William Shirtliff on 5 July 1897 at Stainforth, Yorks.

Sam and Annie had six children, Sam, Ernest, Arthur who was my father, Frank, Shirtliff, (always known as Tom), and Annie.

When Sam retired from working the keel Blanche he sold her on to Arthur Whitehead his son and moved from his home on East Bank to a house in Oldfield Lane , Stainforth. Arthur Whitehead later sold Blanche and purchased a steel hulled keel, Evangeline, from Albert Sutton of Thorne. It was in this keel that the first two cylinder Lister diesel engine in the North East of England was installed.

I give here two examples to illustrate the intertwining of keel families by marriage. My father Arthur Whitehead married Nellie Hinchliffe of a keel family recorded above and his brother, Ernest Whitehead married Rebecca Peck daughter of Walter Pexton Peck.

It intrigues me to read on this website how many distant relatives of my father and therefore myself that there are. My father often spoke of his cousins and half cousins such as the Shirtliffs and Sylvesters.

There are other keelmen relatives on my mothers side of the family that I ought to research into such as her sister Ethel who was married to Albert Chester and Florrie who married Albert Sutton of Thorne, but that is for another day.

However I should add that my first job on leaving school was as mate with Albert Chester on the wooden dumb keel, Kathleen, carrying coal from the Denaby Main colliery to Flixborough on the River Trent.

Arthur Whitehead (jnr)


James and Martha Whiteley

Have you come across a James and Martha Whiteley, both born 1848 registered in Stainforth as were their children. James Whiteley's occupation was Keel Man. Most interesting to us was their dwelling place "Silvery Wave Port Doncaster River Keel". What is this? Where is this? Do you have any information how I find out. In anticipation of you being able to help with my research I have given you my email address.
Susan Brian (nee Whiteley)


While researching our family history of William Wilburn of Stainforth who married Mary Ambler 1751 and the Silvester family of Barnby Dun we have discovered that many of them lived and worked on the Stainforth waterways. They were originally farmers and landowners, and their descendants moved onto the canals and waterways of the Stainforth area.
( Eric & Patricia Wilburn)

These are three of William Wilburn's grandsons:
John Wilburn b.1787 Stainforth who married Ann Silvester of Barnby Dun (our ancestors) lived on one side of the Lock House on the Stainforth Canal in 1841, next door to their nephew John Wilburn b.1818 (the son of his brother William Wilburn b. 1794 married to Ann Allen of Stainforth) and his brother George Wilburn b.1790 married to Mary Dyson, who was born in South Elmsall, lived on the other side.

John Wilburn's descendants who were all born in Stainforth and went on to become involved on the waterways and were known mariner members of our Wilburn family are as follows:

Keels/Sloops etc.
Harriett Wilburn b.1821(daughter) who in 1842 married Richard Barrass Master Mariner of Stainforth.

Charles Wilburn b.1822 (son) married Mary Ann Silvester b.1824,
Charles was robbed of all his possessions while on board the 'Wonder' in Hull 1842, the court case resulted in the felon being transported to the colonies for 7 years!
Charles became a Shipbroker / Coal Merchant and moved to Hull.
(Charles's brother Mark b.1835 married Mary Ann's sister, she was called Ann b.1838. So two Wilburn brothers and two Silvester sisters, who were also cousins, married each other. They were all descendants of Thomas Silvester b.1771 married to Sarah Oughtibridge, Sarah's grandfather was Thomas Oughtibridge b.1699 who had been an Architect & Surveyor engaged on the surveys for the River Don Navigation in about 1742. Mark was our direct ancestor, but he did not work on the canals as he was a Grocer and Importer and they had property on St. Sepulchregate in Doncaster until about 1920. )

George Wilburn b.1824 (son) who married Susannah Trolley was Master of 'Young Richard' in 1861. His son George Wilburn b.1855 was owner of the keel 'Aimwell' and in 1901 was on board the 90 ton trading keel 'Bethel'

His son John Thomas Wilburn b.1863 was Master of the 40 ton keel 'Lapwing' in 1901. Another of George's sons was Willoughby Wilburn b. 1869 who was a Barge Horse Driver in 1901 living at Naylor's Yard, Marshgate, Doncaster.

Willoughby Wilburn b. 1826 (son) who married Eliza Alsop was Mate on 'Joseph' in 1881 they lived at South Bank, Stainforth, in 1901 Willoughby was a Pilot on the canal still living at Stainforth. (Alsop family were also mariners)

Willoughby's son John Wilburn b.1850 who married Ann Matilda Setchell of King's Lynn, John was the Captain of 'Speedwell' in 1881, they went to live in King's Lynn.

Thomas Wilburn b.1828 (son) who married Ann….. was recorded as Master of the 'Rose' in 1881when it was berthed at Goole, in 1901 when it was berthed at Station Road, Kellington, Thomas was age 73, his wife Ann age 74 and also on board 'Rose' is William Shaw age 74! Thomas's twin brother Henry had died an infant.

Edwin Wilburn b.1831 (son) who married Ann Hastings (daughter of George Hastings and Ann Dyson) Edwin was a Ship Owner / Coal Merchant, they moved with their family to Hull and later to Hornsea, East Yorkshire. In 1861 Edwin was Master on board the vessel 'Anns' with his wife and two children. The business was carried on by his sons Henry & Frederick, and Charles who in 1877 was a witness at the inquest of Hannah Raper who was found drowned, Edwin owned the keel of which Michael Raper was the master.

Reuben Wilburn b.1837 (son) who married Mary was recorded as a Mariner / Publican who travelled the waterways and settled in Hull before moving to Liverpool.


George Wilburn b.1790 who married Mary Dyson was recorded as a Mariner in 1841 living on one side of the canal lock house in Stainforth and his brother John (our ancestor) lived on the other
George had 3 sons who went to work on the waterways were:

George Wilburn b.1820 (George's son) married Eliza Turgoose, In 1871 George was a mariner living at West Bank, Stainforth. They were the parents of Dyson Wilburn b. 1861 who was recorded as a Ship's Carpenter / Keelman, he was listed in Kelly's Directory in 1892 as a Waterman living in Hull.

Willoughby Wilburn b.1822 (George's son) who married Mary Wilson was recorded as living at West Bank, Stainforth in 1861, Black Swan Yard, Stainforth in 1871, and on the East Bank, Stainforth 1881, they lived in the area all their lives, their sons who were mariners were:
William Wilburn b.1846 (George's grandson) who married Betsey Botterill was recorded as Master of 'Wonder' and was on board with his wife and five children in 1881 at Stainforth. ( the same vessel as the one involved in the court case in 1842?) They lived in Orchard Street, Thorne, where William died in 1895.
John Wilburn b.1850 (George's grandson) who married Alice Maria Pyket was recorded as 'Deaf' Mate on 'Two Friends' at Mexborough in 1871, he was recorded as a Keelman in 1881, they moved to Hull.

Master Mariner Alfred Wilburn b.1832 (George's son) who married Elizabeth Alsop (widow) was recorded as a Master Mariner living in Goole in 1881. Their son Victor Alfred b. 1866 who married Ann Martin Cocking was a Ship's Carpenter. They lived in Goole.


William Wilburn b. 1794 married Ann Allen and their son John Wilburn b.1816 who married Rachel Brooks was recorded as a Cordwainer and living next to the Lock House on the Stainforth Canal in 1841, the near neighbour of his uncles George Wilburn and John Wilburn.
William's daughter Hannah Wilburn b.1828 was married in 1849 to Henry Barrass and their address was given as "Canal"

(All information on Wilburn family provided by Eric & Patricia Wilburn.)



The Wilson family took up residence on the East Bank. Jim Wilson, James Dyson Wilson, and James Snowdon Wilson are names I have found from this family. Members of the Wilson family also lived on Silver Street, in adjoining houses


Joseph Worfolk constructed a dry dock at Stainforth and commenced boat building in 1863.
In 1904 the boatyard was taken over by Colonel Elwis, a timber merchant of Doncaster.

Christine Hemsworth:
The Worfolks living in Stainforth were Isaac and his brother Ben: also their sister Lucy. Isaac had four in the family: two sons and two daughters. The sons were named Percy and Phillip and worked in the yard with Isaac and Ben. They only employed one other carpenter, Arthur Woodward. He lived on West Bank and used to ferry to and from work across the canal in a flat......
This item has been added in full to the Contributions section as it is a large and extensive piece of work.

Peter Dumville:
Walter Worfolk was a ships carpenter and secretary of the Stainforth Sports which started in1894. At the 1st Parish Council elections in 1894 he came 4th.He was a member of the School Board. He derived much of his popularity because he was secretary of the New Vine friendly society and the Fox Sick and Dividend Society. He moved to Kings Lynn in 1899 but he must have been held in a very good regard because he was invited back in 1900 to receive an award for his work.


Some of the ships built in the Stainforth area with Turgoose connections:
Researched by Eric & Patricia Wilburn

Builder's name or previous owner
Ann a 46 ton sloop built at Sylkstone 1846
William Turgoose of Stainforth on board 1846
Richard Silvester of Stainforth on board 1853
George Bennett
Alice a 53 ton sloop built at Mexborough in 1842
William Turgoose on board 1853
George Varing
Edward a 62 ton sloop built at Thorne 1844
William Turgoose on board 1871
John Wharley
George & Eliza a 48 ton sloop built at Masbro 1846
William Turgoose on board 1846
Henry Stead
Odd Fellow a 49 ton sloop built at Doncaster 1842
Robert Turgoose of Stainforth - Innkeeper on board 1853
Henry Stead
Olive a 73 ton 2 mast schooner built at Stainforth 1848
William Turgoose on board 1849
John Benson
Black Cat a 98 ton 2 mast Schooner built at Thorne 1869
William Turgoose on board 1869
William & Ann a 43 ton sloop built at Doncaster 1846
William Turgoose on board 1841
George Jackson


Researched by Eric & Patricia Wilburn

'Three Betseys' a 46 ton sloop
Edward Silvester & George Hastings, both of Stainforth
'William & Ann' a 43 ton sloop
William Turgoose of Stainforth
'Odd Fellow' a 49 ton sloop
William Dyson of Stainforth
Robert Turgoose of Stainforth (Innkeeper)
'Currier' a 44 ton sloop
William Turgoose of Stainforth
'William Blagden' a 44 ton sloop
William Turgoose of Stainforth
'Superior' a 55 ton sloop
William Turgoose of Stainforth
'Ann' a 46 ton sloop
William Turgoose of Stainforth
1860 Richard Silvester of Stainforth
'George & Eliza' a 48 ton sloop
1846 William Turgoose of Stainforth
'Forrager' a 40 ton sloop
1847 Robert Turgoose of Stainforth
'Olive' a 73 ton 2 mast schooner
1849 William Turgoose of Stainforth
'William & George' 72 ton 2 mast schooner
1852 William Turgoose of Stainforth & George Blagden of Warmsworth
'Richard' a 60 ton sloop
1854 William Turgoose of Goole (moved when married?)
'Ann Turgoose' a 97 ton schooner
1855 William Turgoose of Goole & Nathaniel Colbridge of Thorne
'Defence' a 37 ton sloop
1856 Robert Turgoose of Stainforth
'Eliza Blagden' a 2 mast schooner
1856 William Turgoose of Goole
'Honour' a 2 mast brigantine
1863 William Turgoose of Goole
'Industry' a 38 ton sloop 1859 William Turgoose of Goole
'Thomas & Ann' a 48 ton sloop 1859 William Turgoose of Goole
'Olive' a 58 ton 2 mast schooner 1860 William Turgoose of Goole
'Mary & Ann' a 51 ton sloop 1861 William Turgoose of Goole
'Tynemouth' 22 ton paddle wheel steamer 1861 William Turgoose of Goole
'Sarah & Martha' 85 ton 2 mast schooner 1861 William Turgoose of Goole
'Scovell' a 95 ton 2 mast schooner 1862  
1875 William Turgoose of Goole
'William & Alice' a 107 ton 2 mast schooner 1862 William Turgoose & John Alsop both of Goole
'Leeds' a 94 ton schooner 1864 William Turgoose of Goole
'Swan' a 60 ton sloop 1864 William Turgoose of Goole
'Prudhoe' a 30 ton paddle wheel steamer 1866 William Turgoose of Goole
'Edward' a 62 ton sloop 1871 William Turgoose of Goole
'Peace' a 93 ton 2 mast schooner 1872 William Turgoose of Goole

I’m still looking for information on these other Stainforth Canal/Keel families.
If you would like me to add a name for your own research, then please e-mail me with the details and I'll add it to this list.

Woodall Sidney Woodall.
Oglesby Darwin Oglesbly


maill to Stainforth waterside info

Barrass, Campbell, Carter, Chester, Dearnaly, Downing, Dyson, Fowler, Hastings, Hinchcliffe, Holmes,
Jackson, Jolliffe, Lillford, Moxon, Parish, Peck, Rhodes, Rowbottom, Schofield, Shirtcliffe / Shirtliffe, Silvester,
Wadsworth, Whiteley, Wilburn, Wilson, Worfok, Whitehead

PORT OF GOOLE REGISTER Some of the ships built in the Stainforth area with Turgoose connections




Keels on the canal - The story of Stainforth's waterways.

Stainforth 2001 Homepage