V4.12 – James, Ellen and Walter Law, and Sarah Ellen Magson

A grand grave for a family who weren’t wealthy – who were the Laws?

James Law was born in Todmorden in 1845. Ellen Sutcliffe, his wife to be, had been born the previous year and in the same place. Both of their fathers were overlookers in local mills, and when they married in 1867 James was working as a mechanic. He worked as a mechanic and millwright going forward, and Ellen as a housekeeper for at least the first few years of their marriage. In 1871 they were living at Temperance Street.

The pair had at least six children that we’re aware of. Two are buried here, Walter and Sarah Ellen. Sarah was their second child, born in 1873, and Walter their last, born in 1884. By 1891 the family had moved from Todmorden to Littleborough, living in Calderbrook on Halifax Road.

James died first in 1904, followed by Walter in 1909. We couldn’t find any information in the newspapers about their deaths.

Sarah Ellen married Charles Magson in 1899 but their marriage was short lived. Charles, aka Charlie, was a fuller in a woollen mill who later became a butcher, and in 1901 he and Sarah Ellen lived at 25 Todmorden Road. Their marriage was short-lived however, as Charlie died in 1908 – again, no newspaper record to give an indication of how. Sarah Ellen moved in with her younger brother John and his wife and young daughter and either kept the home for them or for someone else. John was an insurance agent and perhaps could have afforded to keep and pay a wage to his sister.

Ellen meanwhile had moved in with daughter Eliza and her husband and young daughter, in likely a similar arrangement. Eliza’s husband George David Booth would later be the beneficiary of Sarah Ellen’s estate. Ellen died in 1920, and Sarah Ellen many years later in 1941, neither having remarried after their bereavements.

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