• Ann’s People

    (Aunt) Mary Walker

    A look into the life of the lesser known of Ann Walker’s paternal unmarried aunts, Mary Walker. She spent her life living at Crownest and Cliff Hill. In this blog, we separate the two Ann Walker’s (niece and aunt) by using the names Ann Walker and Aunt Ann Walker. Family Mary was the oldest child of William & Elizabeth Walker, born in 1747. Her siblings were :1   Her brother, John, was Ann Walker’s father. She was baptized 17 September 1747 at St Matthew’s Church in Lightcliffe.2. The Walker family were wealthy wool merchants and owned a vast amount of property. Elizabeth, Mary’s mother, was born a Caygill. Her brother…

  • About Ann

    Ann Walker’s Giving

    While Ann Walker was away in the Russian Empire over the winters of 1839 and 1840 she wrote back three times to England to David Booth to give instructions on what to give to her tenants/people she knew. This blog looks at Ann Walker’s giving in these letters and discusses what they contain. Note the bolded names in the letters have been done so by the author to emphasise that there is more information in the blog about these individuals. Ann Walker (St Petersburg) to David Booth (Halifax) 7 October 1839 Ann wrote to David Booth to explain her wishes for her tenants and people she knew. Booth was described…

  • Ann’s People

    Ann Walker Stansfeld (née Sutherland)

    (Updated 6/7/2023) Ann Walker Stansfeld (née Sutherland) was Ann Walker’s niece, Elizabeth & George’s youngest daughter. She signed her name as Annie in letters and was identified as such in some other documents. So, I will be referring to her as Annie in this blog. Early Years Ann Walker Sutherland was the 6th child of Capt. George M and Elizabeth Sutherland (née Walker), was born on 17 September 1837 and baptized the following month in Scotland.1 Anne Lister first mentioned her in her diary entry of 1 October 1837, when Ann Walker received a letter from her sister Elizabeth announcing her birth: “…dinner at 6 ¾ – coffee read the…

  • About Ann

    Ann’s Artwork

    By Ivana Nika and Diane Halford There is much talk in both Ann Walker’s and Anne Lister’s diaries about Ann sketching, painting and having drawing lessons (usually with Mr Browne or Mr Horner). There are no sketchbooks belonging to Ann known to have survived, although the hunt for one continues. There has also been no discovery of any proven images of Ann Walker herself yet. There are, however, several sketches, doodles and drawings known to have been completed by Ann Walker that still exist. This short blog will show you those images and the context in which they were created. Family History In the 1830s and 1840s Ann took a…

  • Ann’s People

    Samuel Washington

    By Deb Woolson Early Years Samuel was born and baptized in 1797, the youngest of the five children of Esther (née Mann) and James Washington. The Washington family were tenants in a home owned by Ann’s grandfather William Walker, which would have then passed on to Ann’s uncle, and James was the bookkeeper for the Walker business per his death notice in 1839. Sam’s mother, Esther, died in 1842. In 1822, prior to his marriage, Sam was mentioned in the History, Directory & Gazetteer of County of York with his occupation being listed as schoolmaster & land surveyor.1 Where he was schoolmaster is unknown to date. Marriage Sam married Hannah…

  • Ann's Places

    The Piece Hall – Halifax Landmark

    A short blog on the events at the Piece Hall in Halifax and the connection to Ann Walker and Anne Lister. In 1779, the Piece Hall in Halifax was built on land donated by John Caygill, a wealthy merchant, replacing the original Cloth Hall of 1572. It was designed by Thomas Bradley with a large courtyard surrounded by over 315 small rooms on three sides, north, south and west. Due to the slope of the ground, there were three levels on the eastern side that taper to two levels to the west. Cloth piece trading, 30-yard length fabric, would take place every Saturday for two hours of each week. Ann…

  • Ann’s People

    Lydia Fenton (née Wilkinson)

    Updated 3/7/2023 This research blog post explores the long-standing friendship between Ann Walker and Lydia Fenton (née Wilkinson). Early Years Born in 1796, Lydia was the fourth daughter of Rev. Robert Wilkinson and his wife Sarah Robinson, of Heath, just outside Halifax. They had a large family of eight children, five daughters and three sons. The sons and one daughter never lived to adulthood. Rev. Robert Wilkinson was the curate of Lightcliffe from 1782 and Master of Heath Grammar School. He baptized Ann Walker in 1803. Lydia was educated at Crofton Hall near Wakefield where she was a childhood friend of Elizabeth Firth, who would become Anne Brontë’s godmother. She…