Thursday, June 14, 2012

Amos from Tring

In spite of being over ninety years old, Amos Crockett's granddaughter still has vivid recollections of her grandfather. She remembers him as being crippled, stooped over, and needing two canes to walk across the room. She thought of him as a very old man, yet he was only sixty-eight when he died.

At one time he ran three outdoor ice rinks in Edmonton and Ev remembers at the end of the evening when it was time to close the rink his voice would come over the loud speaker: "Get hoff the hice". Ev worked for her grandfather at the arena when she was twelve years old, starting at fifty cents per evening but soon she was earning the same as the rest of the concession staff:  $1.00 per evening.

Amos was born at Tring, Hertfordshire, England on May 19, 1865. He was born to James Crockett, a jobbing labourer, and Annie Fitkin, a straw plaiter. He was born at home on Harrow Yard on Akeman Street. At the time of his birth, his siblings James 7, Amelia 5, Rebekah 3, and David 1, were at home.

Akeman Street runs north/south through Tring and is one of the original Roman roads that run through Britain. Tring is about 35 miles north of London.

The Crockett family were among the illiterate working class in Victorian times. The men had to find jobs labouring on the farms or in the textile mills. Women often had more income than the men by plaiting straw for the hat industry. Straw plaiting was done at home and the women took their finished work to market on Wednesday mornings to sell to the buyers from the hat factories nearby. The picture below depicts women working at home plaiting straw while watching their young children. Children as young as seven were put to work, adding to the family income.

1 comment:

  1. I started a blog on Amos in 2008, before I had this one on the broader subject of genealogy. I have combined the bits and pieces from that blog and entered them on this page before deleting the other blog site.