Matthew Darlington was born about 1809 and baptised on 19 February 1809 in Haslington, Cheshire. His parents were John Darlington and Jane Holland. I found nine children born or baptised in Haslington with John and Jane Darlington as parents. However, the baptisms were over a 30 year period (from 1792 to 1822), which seemed unlikely unless the children were baptised as older children. Having said that, I did find the 1851 census (at familysearch) for John and Jane, born in the 1770s listed with a son born about 1821. I haven’t seen the original (no current sub) so can’t confirm.  If so, it was a very long period over which to have children. If it’s the right couple, John was a brickmaker.

Matthew married Elizabeth Malam on 14 June 1829 at Astbury, Cheshire. I don’t know much about Elizabeth. She was born between 1804 and 1807 in Weston or Wybunbury in Cheshire according to census returns. She may have been born in 1805 in Wybunbury to John and Hannah Malam.

A daughter, Jane, was christened just three months after the wedding! Two years later in 1831 a son, John, was born in Haslington. Then three years later another daughter, Hannah, in 1834 (which seems to point to Elizabeth’s parents being named John and Hannah). Two more sons were born in 1835 and 1841 – Thomas and Matthew.

In the 1841 census all the children were listed as well as a two-year old girl called Elizabeth who would’ve been born in about 1839. I suspect she died before 1843 when “my” Elizabeth was born. And indeed, this is confirmed by a burial record at findmypast in which a girl, born in 1838 died in 1841 in Haslington. As I don’t currently have a sub I can’t view it. In any case, the family were living in Haslington and Matthew was a cordwainer.

Three more children that I know of were born during the next ten years: Elizabeth in 1843, Mary in 1847, and Joseph in 1850. The eldest child, Jane, married James Glover in 1850. The eldest son, John, may have died that year according to a burial record at findmypast. Certainly there’s no further sign of him.

In 1851 all the children except Jane, John, and the ‘earlier’ Elizabeth were listed. The family were still living in Haslington with Matthew being a master shoemaker.

In 1861 all the children except Jane, John and both Elizabeths were listed, all living at Haslington. The ‘younger’ Elizabeth was working at Haslington Hall. Matthew was a shoemaker and farmer of 18 acres, employing two men and two boys. He was also a gospel preacher! Son, Thomas was also a shoemaker, and daughter, Hannah, was a boot binder. Son, Matthew was also a shoemaker and “free gospel preacher”(in inverted commas and underlined), age 20.

Elizabeth married John Asher in 1864. Matthew married Hannah Whittaker in 1866. Thomas married Esther Plant in 1867.

In 1871, therefore, only Hannah, Mary, and Joseph were still living with Matthew and Elizabeth.  Matthew was now just listed as a farmer of 39 acres. With the family on census night were grandsons, John Glover, 15, and John Darlington, 5. John was born about 1866 and, I’m guessing, is either the son of Thomas or Matthew.

In 1875 Hannah married a widower with two children, Ralph Allcock.

Sadly, Matthew’s wife, Elizabeth, died in 1879.

In 1881, Matthew lived in Church Coppenhall, farming 35 acres at the age of 72. With him was daughter, Mary, 34, and son, Joseph, 31. John Darlington was also there, age 15, but this time was listed as a “son” not a “grandson”. Also there was Ellen Allcock, age 15.

Joseph married Elizabeth Whittaker in 1882.

I found an interesting article about Thomas Darlington, free gospel preacher and shoemaker in 1884:




“Cheshire Observer”, 26 April 1884

“An ignorant shoemaker”. Oh dear. Go, Thomas.

According to a burial record on findmypast, Matthew died in 1884, and I subsequently found this notice.


Cheshire Observer, 4 October 1884

[I can find no information on Maw Green farm, apart from the fact that a few families lived there over the years, including Richard Lindop.]

So, Matthew died on 19 September 1884, at age 76, a good age.

Sources: findmypast; wikipedia; family archives; familysearch; British newspaper archive; Google.