Looking to connect up with other researchers interested in this Best Family.
I want to discover more about my Best family (see details at the end of this message) in Sussex during the period 1730 - 1870. I am especially interested in finding out more of what they did and why two brothers (James b.1788 & Charles b. 1790) took the bold action of migrating with their young families to northern Tasmania in 1828.
Also there seems to have been significant movement by the family away from Beeding. The Upper Beeding Census Returns 1841 to 1891 support this assertion. Some of the lack of "Best" listings are explained by the girls marrying but we still had any other issue from Charles (born circa 1735) and Elizabeth, and Phillip who was baptised on the 6th January 1800 that I had expected to see show up in the census. In a letter (see below), on 19th March 1846, from James (b. 1788) he writes of his connection to Beeding - "...... The Church yard ......... contains many of my Ancestors" Given this information and that most (one birthplace unknown) of his brothers and sisters were born in Beeding, and that many of his and his brother Charles's children were also born in Beeding it seems that it is a reasonable assumption that my Best family had a strong connection with Beeding prior to 1828 and after that at least through the Blann connection.
It is reasonably certain that James (1788 - 1868) had been a prisoner of war in France early in the 1800s and after returning he married in 1815 and found employment with a Squire Bridgers on Horton Farm near Beeding. Then in 1828 he was hired by a Colonel Latour of the Van Dieman's Land Establishment to oversee the management of the sheep and cattle on their large property in Tasmania.
His brother Charles (1790 - 1868) appears to have been known as "Lincoln Charlie" married in 1809 in Hamsey, Sussex. His mother's family the Lillywhites had strong connections with Findon and I have found that in 1823 a Charles Best of Steyning (about one mile from Beeding) was trying to sell a windmill that had been built at Findon. I am wondering if this is my Charles.
In several documents I have found references to both brothers being Yeomen and I am wondering if this provides a further avenue for my research. (any thoughts or suggestions?)
Sorry about the rambling notes but I wanted to convey some of what I have pieced together.
I would appreciate any information on this family that others are able to provide or any suggestions on possible research lines.
MY GGGG PARENTS – THE BEEDING BEST FAMILY
1. Charles BEST. Son of Charles BEST & Elizabeth. Born 9 Jun 1757 in Beeding, Sussex. Baptism 25 Aug 1768 in Beeding. Died 31 Jul 1818 in Beeding. Occupation Shepherd. Ref Number m. Vital Records Index FHL No 1067105.
He married Elizabeth LILLYWHITE, daughter of Thomas LILLYWHITE & Jane, 7 Jan 1779 in St Nicholas, Brighton, England. Born 7 Apr 1761 in England. Baptism 7 Apr 1761 in Washington, Sussex. Died 16 Apr 1835.
From Saltlake City Archives – Baptisms for the Dead Sep 23 1924 – 34177Elizabeth Lillywhite, b. 1761, md. 25 mar 1785, rel.
They had the following children:
2 i. Elizabeth BEST
ii. Charles BEST; Born 11 Aug 1782 in Beeding. Died 11 May 1783 in Beeding.
iii. Kitty BEST (Twin); Born 8 Feb 1784 in Beeding. Baptism 22 Feb 1784 in Beeding. Died 22 Jun 1804.
iv. Martha BEST (Twin); Born 8 Feb 1784 in Beeding. Baptism 22 Feb 1784 in Beeding.
3 v. James BEST
4 vi. Charles BEST
vii. Charlotte BEST; Born Circa 1792 in Beeding. Baptism 16 Jan 1793 in Beeding. She married James RIDDLE, 27 Nov 1821 in East Grimstead.
viii. George BEST; Born 30 May 1793. Died 11 May 1794.
ix. Philip (?Phillip) BEST; Born Circa 1799 in Beeding. Baptism 6 Jan 1800 in Beeding.
MORE ON CHARLES & ELIZABETH’S CHILDREN
2. Elizabeth BEST. Born 17 Dec 1780 in Beeding. Baptism 24 Dec 1780 in Beeding. Died 1859.
She married Benjamin BLANN, 25 Nov 1800 in Beeding. Born 16 Aug 1778 in Beeding. Occupation Bargeman.
1841Census - Beeding Street.
Benjamin Blann 60 Bargeman. B. Sussex
Elizabeth. 60 "
Philip 20 Bargeman "
Timothy 15 Bargeman "
1851Census - High Street
Benjamin Blann 72 Bargeman. B. Beeding
Elizabeth 70 wife.
Edmund Blann 41 Sawyer. B. Beeding
Mary 43 wife. B. Poynings
Philip Blann 32 Bargeman
1861 Census - High Street.
Benjamin Blann widower, 82. Pauper.
Philip, still a Bargeman.
Benjamin and Elizabeth had the following children:
i. Benjamin BLANN
ii. Elizabeth BLANN
iii. Francis BLANN
iv. John BLANN
v. Benjamin BLANN (Twin)
vi. James BLANN (Twin)
vii. Charles BLANN
viii. Edmund BLANN
ix. Peter BLANN
x. Philip BLANN
xi. Timothy BLANN
3. James BEST. Born 6 Mar 1788 in Beeding, Sussex. Baptism 20 Mar 1789 in Beeding. Died 4 Sep 1869 in Sheppards Folly, Branxholme, Victoria. Buried 8 Sep 1869 in Branxholme Cemetery. Occupations Mariner, Shepard, Farmer.
In a letter from James to Duncan McIntyre 18/10/1846
...this I have observed during my stay in Aberdeenshire which I visited last in 1807 but afterwards spent many years among the natives of the Orkney and Shetland Islands and whose memory is still dear to me.
This letter raises questions on the validity of the following "family stories" about James being captured during the Battle of Trafalgar which was fought on 21st October 1805.
From Rodger Blaker, Hastings, East Sussex
James was press ganged into the Navy and served on HMS Bellerophon at the battle of Trafalgar. It also appears that he spent seven years as a prisoner of the French at Arras.
(I have not been able to find James name on the index of sailors on the Bellerophon at the battle of Trafalgar)
From Marlene Greiner
James was taken prisoner by the French after the battle of Trafalgar. He spent about six years as a prisoner of war, and during this time wrote a book of references to the Bible. He eventually escaped and returned to England where ironically he was assumed to be a Frenchman. He met Ann working in a field and offered to help. They fell in love, her father did not approve and they eloped. Her father sent detectives after them but once he was found the detectives realised the "Orleans Sheppard" was not a Frenchman after all. This story was told by the Great Grandson of James.
From another family story it seems after his marriage hefound employment with a Squire Bridgers on Horton Farm in Beeding, Sussex.
Around 1828, it appears he was hired by a Colonel Latour of the Van Dieman's Land Establishment to oversee the management of the sheep and cattle on their large property in Tasmania.To take up this position, James, his wife and children sailed from London on the 500 ton "Orelia" (Captain William Hudson in command) in December, 1828.
In May 1829 he arrived at Hobart with his wife and seven children (Mary, aged 13,was the eldest) on board the Orelia, having been engaged by the Van Dieman's Land Establishment (known as the "Cressy Estate") to take charge of the Company's Southdown, Leicester and Merino Sheep.A further four children were born to him and his wife in the first five years after their arrival.In March 1854 - the month of Mary Milbourne's death - he was presented with a gold watch by the proprietors of the Cressy Estate 'in testimony of his valued services', which probably marked the end of his connection with the Company.
When Mary died James Best and his wife took the four youngest Milbourne children (Harriet, James, Alfred Martin and Albert Arthur) and their son Charles from Launceston in the small sailing vessel "Adolphus Yates" of 108 tons to Portland, arriving on 15th February 1856. They went to the Best property at Branxholme where his eldest son, Thomas had been one of the first to settle. It was called Best's Crossing for a while. James bought property there and called his farm "Shepherd's Folly". It was handed down through the family for approx. three generations.
He married Ann GOACHER, daughter of Thomas GOACHER & Elizabeth WATERS, 27 Mar 1815 in Brighton, England. Born Circa 1796 in Ashurst, Sussex, England. Died 30 Apr 1871 in Sheppards Folly, Branxholme, Victoria. Buried in Branxholme Cemetery, Victoria.
Arrived with James in Hobart on the Orelia in 1829
They had the following children:
5 i. Mary Ann BEST
6 ii. Thomas BEST
7 iii. Anna BEST
8 iv. Jabiz BEST
9 v. Kilby BEST
10 vi. Miriam BEST
11 vii. Elizabeth Waterman BEST
viii. James BEST
12 ix. Caroline BEST
13 x. Hannah BEST
14 xi. Charles BEST
4. Charles BEST. [My GGG Grandfather] Born 4 Jun 1790 in Beeding, Sussex, England. Baptism 4 Jul 1790 in Beeding, Sussex, England. Died 3 Feb 1868 in Hagley, Tasmania. Buried in Westbury, Tasmania. Occupation Shepherd, Yeoman. Ref Number d. 35/552.
Charles arrived in Van Diemans Land, with his wife & family on the sailing ship Orelia on the 8th May 1829. He was in charge of Southdown sheep for the Cressy Company and his brother was in charge of Devon cattle for the same company. The ship was Captianed by William Hudson
According to Robyn Morris James was known as "Lincoln Charlie"
After leaving service with the Cressy Company, Charles worked as Overseer atPenquite a property owned by Mr Laurence for some years. Then he bought the property "Vermont", in the Launceston District, and remained on it until failing health forced him to retire. He then moved to his son John's residence where he died in 1868.
He married Hannah (Anne) RUSSELL, 7 Oct 1809 in Hamsey, Sussex, England. Born About 1785. Died in Launceston, Tasmania. Buried 9 Mar 1830 in Church of England, Cypress St., Launceston, Tasmania. Ref Number d. 34/2291.
Died at Launceston Hospital of inflamation
They had the following children:
i. Caroline BEST
ii. Elizabeth BEST
15 iii. Charles BEST
16 iv. George BEST
17 v. John BEST
18 vi. James BEST
vii. Sarah BEST