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Wolstanton

"Wolstanton is a large and well-built village, on a lofty eminence, one and a half miles N of Newcastle-under-Lyme, and the same distance SW of Burslem. It has a cotton mill, and is the head of a populous and very extensive parish, which abounds in coal, clay, and ironstone, and includes the large pottery town of Tunstall, and about twenty villages and hamlets, divided into twelve townships or liberties, and comprises about 11,000 acres of land, and more than 18,000 inhabitants.
Wolstanton is in the manor of Newcastle-under-Lyme, which belongs to the Duchy of Lancaster. Chesterton is a separate manor, belonging to T Kinnersly, Esq, and Knutton & Chatterley form a manor, of which L Bennett, Esq, is lord. The other eight townships of this large parish are in the manor of Tunstall Court, of which Ralph Sneyd, Esq, of Keele, is lord, but a great part of the soil belongs to HH & R Williamson Esqrs, Smith Child Esq, Messrs W & A Adams, JH Clive, Thomas Peake, and many smaller owners.

Townships & Villages in the parish of Wolstanton
Tunstall, a modern, well-built, and rapidly improving market town, is the most northerly town in the Staffordshire Potteries, pleasantly seated on the declivity of a bold eminence, overlooking the vale of the Trent, about two miles N by W of Burslem. Its township contains about 800 acres, and has risen during the present century from the rank of a small village to that of a town with about 10,000 inhabitants. In its vicinity are many extensive potteries, and several coal and iron works. Greenfield and Sandyford are two hamlets, about half a mile north of the town.
Brerehurst, or Brieryhurst, is a liberty of 922 acres, and 1518 inhabitants, from four to six miles N by W of Burslem. The land belongs to T Kinnersley Esq, Mr Lawton, and a number of smaller owners. It includes Dales Green, Oldry Lane, and part of Kidsgrove and Mow Cop.
Chatterley liberty, from two to four miles NW of Newcastle-under-Lyme, has 1563 acres and 374 souls. It includes Red Street and High Car, and belongs chiefly to R Sneyd, Esq.
Great & Little Chell form a liberty of 740 acres, and 737 souls. Great Chell is on an eminence two and a half miles N by E of Burslem, and is occupied chiefly by potters.
Chesterton is a large village, on a pleasant declivity three miles N by W of Newcastle-under-Lyme. Its township comprises about 1090 acres of land, belonging to T Kinnersley, Esq, and several smaller owners. Here are several extensive brick and tile yards, and at Apedale are large iron furnaces.
Golden Hill, about a mile N of Tunstall, is a village in the township of Oldcott, which contains 714 acres and 1295 inhabitants. Here is a large colliery, belonging to Rt Williamson, Esq, and two potteries.
Kidsgrove, or Kidgrew, is a considerable village on the high road, two miles N of Tunstall, in the townships of Ranscliff, Brerehurst and Oldcott. Many of the inhabitants are employed in the collieries belonging to Thomas Kinnersly, Esq, of Clough Hall, and J Sutton & Co, of Trubshaw.
Knutton, one mile NW of Newcastle-under-Lyme, is a township of scattered houses, with 1388 inhabitants, and about 1700 acres of land, including an enclosed and fertile heath, where Newcastle Races were formerly held.
Mow Cop, or Mole-Cop, a mountainous ridge, extending more than three miles along the borders of Staffordshire and Cheshire, and rising in one part to 1090 feet above sea level, gives name to a church district which comprises parts of the townships of Brerehurst and Stadmoreslow, and part of Biddulph parish. This district comprises many scattered houses on the picturesque declivities of the hill, extending from three to five miles N of Tunstall.
Ranscliff, or Rainscliff township is about four miles N of Newcastle, and contains 375 acres, 967 souls, and the greater part of Kidsgrove village. T Kinnersly, Esq, owns most of the soil.
Red Street, three and a half miles N by W of Newcastle-under-Lyme, has a number of scattered houses on a commanding eminence, extending into the twonships of Chesterton, Chatterley, and Talk-on-the-Hill. It is one of the oldest seats of the earthenware manufacture, and probably has its name from the red pottery formerly made here, though some authors think it had it from a bloody conflict between the Saxons and Danes. The last pottery in Red Street was deserted some years ago.
Stadmoreslow, or Stadmereslow, four miles NNE of Burslem, is a township of 309 souls, and about 600 acres of land, including part of Mow Cop, and a number of scattered houses.
Wedgwood township or liberty, three miles NNE of Burslem, has only about 430 acres, and 132 inhabitants, and is probably the place where the Wedgwood family was seated at an early period.
Newchapel formed a chapelry to Wolstanton parish and details of the chapelry can be found on the Newchapel page. "

[From History, Gazetteer and Directory of Staffordshire, William White, Sheffield, 1851]

Bibliography

'Wolstanton (Wolstan's Town), a Brief History of the Ancient Church, Parish, and Village'
by Percy Walter Lewis
Published 1908 (2nd Edition), by EH Eardley, Tunstall.

'A History of Tunstall'
by MW Greenslade
Published 1981, by Staffordshire County Library, Stafford.

'The Story of Christ Church, Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent, 1832-1982'
by John G Llewellyn
Published 1982, by JG Llewellyn, Tunstall, Staffordshire.

'Kidsgrove as it Was, a Short History'
by Philip R Leese
Published 1984, by Staffordshire County Library, Stafford.

'The Trent & Mersey, Kidsgrove's Canal'
by Philip R Leese
Published 1978, by Staffordshire County Library, Stafford.

'Kidsgrove, Talke and Mow Cop, a Portrait in Old Picture Postcards'
by Roger Simmons
Published 1987, by Brampton, Loggerheads.

'Primitive Methodist Church Centenary Celebration, May 25th-27th, 1907
Souvenir Programme of the Camp Meetings & Other Services, Mow Cop'

by TH Hunt
Published 1907, by Rev E Dalton, London.

'The Secret of Mow Cop, A New Appraisal of the Origins of Primitive Methodism'
by William Edward Farndale
Published 1950, by Epworth Press, London.

'Mow Cop after 150 Years, Its Spiritual Significance'
by William Edward Farndale
Published 1984, by Epworth Press, London.

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Census

The population of Wolstanton parish, including Newchapel chapelry was as follows:
1801 -- 4,667
1831 -- 10,853
1841 -- 16,575

A surname index only of the 1851 census for Wolstanton parish is included in the 1851 Staffordshire Census surname index Vol 4, Wolstanton, published by the Birmingham and Midland SGH.

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Church History

"Wolstanton Church, St Margaret, is an ancient red freestone edifice, with a lofty spire that may be seen at a large distance. It contains several monuments of the Sneyd family, and a handsome stone pulpit, erected in 1848. The vicarage is in the patronage of R Sneyd, Esq, and incumbency of the Rev John Tyson, BA.

Christ Church, Tunstall, is a handsome fabric, built in 1832, in the syle which prevailed in the reign of Elizabeth. The perpetual curacy is in the patronage of Ralph Sneyd, Esq, and incumbency of the Rev Samuel Newall, MA.

Golden Hill Church, St John, is a neat structure, in the Norman style, erected in 1842. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Bishop of Lichfield, and incumbency of the Rev Frederick Wade, MA.

Mow Cop Church, St Thomas, is a plain Gothic fabric, erected in 1842. The Bishop of Lichfield is patron of the perpetual curacy, in the incumbency of the Rev John James Robinson, BA.

In the parish there are many dissenting chapels. The Wesleyans and Primitive Methodists have chapels in the village of Wolstanton.
In Tunstall are chapels belonging to the Wesleyan, New Connexion, and Primitive Methodists. Tunstall is noted as the place where the Primitive Methodists originated. Their chapel, erected in 1821, and enlarged in 1833, is a large and commodious building. The Primitive Methodists also have chapels at Great Chell, built in 1823, Chesterton, Knutton, and Mow Cop.
The Wesleyans have chapels at Kidsgrove, built in 1849, Knutton, Chesterton, and Red Street, built in 1833. The Unitarians have a small chapel at Stadmoreslow, and the Methodists have chapels at Golden Hill and Stadmoreslow."

[From History, Gazetteer and Directory of Staffordshire, William White, Sheffield, 1851]

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Church Records

Church of England Registers
The register of the parish church of St Margaret commences in 1628. The original registers for the period 1628-1966 (Bapts), 1628-1953 (Mar) & 1628-1952 (Bur) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.
Bishops Transcripts, 1662-1881 (with gaps 1668-72, 1721, 1763-65, 1826-27, & 1838) are deposited at Lichfield Record Office.

A transcript of the registers of St Margaret for the period 1624-1769 (Part1) & 1769-1812 (Part 2) was published by the Staffordshire Parish Registers Society in 1914, and both parts have been reprinted by the Birmingham & Midland SGH.

The register of Christ Church, Tunstall, commences in 1832. The original registers for the period 1832-1944 (Bapts), 1838-1945 (Mar) & 1832-1929 (Bur) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.
Bishops Transcripts, 1832-1868 (with gaps 1840-1852 & 1854) are deposited at Lichfield Record Office.

The register of St Mary, Tunstall, commences in 1881. The original registers for the period 1881-1978 (Bapts) & 1882-1948 (Mar) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.

The register of St Chad, Tunstall, commences in 1905. The original registers for the period 1905-1944 (Bapts) & 1927-1933 (Mar) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.

The register of St John the Evangelist, Goldenhill, commences in 1841. The original registers for the period 1841-1923 (Bapts), 1849-1919 (Mar) & 1841-1888 (Bur) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.

The register of St Thomas, Mow Cop, commences in 1842. The original registers for the period 1842-1954 (Bapts), 1844-1980 (Mar) & 1842-1913 (Bur) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.

The register of St Thomas, Kidsgrove, commences in 1839. The original registers for the period 1839-1961 (Bapts), 1853-1976 (Mar) & 1853-1993 (Bur) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.

The register of St Mary, Knutton, commences in 1873. The original registers for the period 1873-1936 (Bapts), 1875-1940 (Mar) & 1888-1936 (Bur) are deposited at Staffordshire Record Office.

Nonconformist Church Registers
The original registers deposited at Staffordshire Record Office are indicated below:
Sandyford High Street, Wolstanton, Wesleyan Methodist, Baptisms 1871-1966, Marriages 1924-1965.
Zion Chapel, Sandyford High Street, Wolstanton, Methodist, Baptisms 1879-1940.
Bank Street, Tunstall, Methodist, Baptisms 1864-1887 & Marriages 1949-1963.
Jubilee Chapel, Wedgwood Street, Tunstall, Primitive Methodist, Baptisms 1837-1971, Marriages 1913-1971.
King Street, Tunstall, Wesleyan Methodist, Baptisms 1875-1965.
St Michael's Road, Tunstall, Primitive Methodist, Marriages 1914-1975.
Victoria Terrace, Tunstall, (later Mount Tabor), United Methodist, Baptisms 1823-1952, Marriages 1914-1952.
Wesley Place, Tunstall, Wesleyan Methodist, Baptisms 1787-1966, Marriages 1902-1966.
Hillside Methodist Church, Mow Cop, Wesleyan Methodist, Baptisms 1854-1957, Marriages 1929-1977.
Chell, Wesleyan Methodist, Baptisms 1879-1954.
Brindley Ford, High Street, Chell, Primitive Methodist, Baptisms 1863-1928, Marriages 1914-1976.
Pittshill, Chell, Wesleyan Methodist, Marriages 1931-1954.
Pittshill, Chell, Primitive Methodist, Baptisms 1855-1975.
Zion Chapel, Andrew Street (Dale Street) Goldenhill, Primitive Methodist, Baptisms 1926-1972, Marriages 1919-1974.
High Street, Goldenhill, Wesleyan Methodist, Baptisms 1908-1977.
Kidsgrove, Wesleyan Methodist, Baptisms 1842-1920.
Central Methodist Church, Kidsgrove, Baptisms 1891-1953, Marriages 1955-1979.

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Maps

A map showing the pre-1850 boundaries of Wolstanton Parish & Townships

Poorhouses, Poor Law etc

Wolstanton parish became part of Wolstanton & Burslem Union following the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834.
The Union comprised the two parishes of Wolstanton and Burslem, and had a total population of 32,669 in 1841. It was amalgamated with Stoke Union in 1922.
A large Union Workhouse was erected in Great Chell, with accomodation for 400 paupers.

Stoke-on-Trent City Archives holds some records including:
Westciff Institution, Chell, Registrations of Births, Baptisms, Deaths, 1840 -1940 period.
Minutes, 1854-58, 1901-03, 1914-16 & 1919-22.

The Public Record Office holds:
Correspondence, 1835-1900 (Class MH12/11196-225)
Staff Registers, 1837-1921 (Class MH9/19)

Probate Records

Chris Emms probate pages include a full transcript of the Wills and Inventories of Wolstanton Parish 1600-1650

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[Last updated: 28th July 2014, Mike Harbach.  © 1999 - 2014]

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