On the 1851 census there is this family which, with eldest child born 1841, is probably the Joseph who married in 1840, and wife is Mary.
CLIFT, Joseph Head Married M 38 1813 Gun Butch Forger Dudley, Worcestershire CLIFT, Mary Wife Married F 36 1815 Studley, Warwickshire CLIFT, Ann Daughter F 10 1841 Birmingham, Warwickshire CLIFT, Joseph Son M 4 1847 Birmingham, Warwickshire CLIFT, Benjamin Son M 3 1848 Birmingham, Warwickshire CLIFT, Rosanna Daughter F 1 1850 Birmingham, Warwickshire Piece: 2057 Folio: 384 Page: 24 Registration District: Birmingham Civil Parish: Birmingham Municipal Borough: Birmingham Address: 2, Court Lench Street, Birmingham County: Warwickshire
1861 census: It took me a while to find this family on the 1861 census. They have been recorded/transcribed as CLEFT.
CLEFT, Joseph Head Married M 46 1815 Gun Brick Forger Dudley, Worcestershire CLEFT, Mary Wife Married F 46 1815 Studley, Warwickshire CLEFT, Ann Daughter Unmarried F 18 1843 Birmingham, Warwickshire CLEFT, Joseph Son M 14 1847 Birmingham, Warwickshire CLEFT, Rosanna Daughter F 11 1850 Birmingham, Warwickshire CLEFT, Mary Daughter F 9 1852 Birmingham, Warwickshire CLEFT, William Son M 6 1855 Birmingham, Warwickshire COOK, Lucy Visitor Married F 65 1796 Studley, Warwickshire Piece: 2154 Folio: 115 Page: 3 Registration District: Birmingham Civil Parish: Birmingham Municipal Borough: Birmingham Address: 5, Court 1, Price Street, Birmingham County: Warwickshire
Clearly the same family. However, there is NO son Thomas. Nor can I find a likely young Thomas elsewhere, e.g. with grandparents.
I cannot find this family in subsequent censuses, so they may have emigrated. Worth looking for them in the States? Name Rosanna is the most unusual, but could be married by 1870 of course ...
Gives you something to work with anyway.
On the other hand, another scenario is possible: A previous researcher in your family may have checked out the 'Jun' 1859 birth registration, found parents to be Jospeh Clift and Mary Blake, and recorded these facts. However, possibly that child Thomas died in DEc 1859, so that Thomas was NOT your Thomas ....