Henry Green (1801 – 1873)


    1. His childhood

Henry Green, my husband’s great-great-great-great-grandfather, was born on 23 June 1801 at Penshurst, Kent, England as the eldest child of Ann Turner (1773 – 1859) and John Green (ca 1771 – 1854).1-4 His siblings were John (*1803), Ann (*1806), Emily Jane (*1808), Charles William (*1811), Maria Louisa (*1812) and Elizabeth (*1814). His father was a papermaker who owned the Hayle Mill near Maidstone, Kent where the family lived since 1817.3 The Mill was profitable and one can assume that, as the children grew up the family had adequate resources to have a decent life, in spite of the poverty and hardship that the majority of British population had to endure.

It is uncertain where and how the children completed their schooling but it seems as if they were well-educated. Henry received his Unitarian theological training from 1819 to 1822 under Rev George Harris at Renshaw Street Chapel, Liverpool, Lancashire, England. From 1822, he continued studies at the University of Glasgow in Scotland as the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge in England didn’t accept students from a non-conformist background. Henry graduated with a Masters of Art (MA) degree in April 1825. He was a distinguished student in classical literature, logic, moral philosophy and physics,2,3 and won several prizes, such as Best Poetical Essay on the Pleasures of the country, and for General Eminence in the Logic Class for Advanced Students, both awarded on 1 May 1823, as well as for Best Translation of the Phaêdon of Plato, Best Translation of the Table of Cebes and Best Essay in the Private Greek Class on the topic of the Dionysian Criticism and how useful it is to Modern Writers, awarded on 30 April 1825.5 It is here in Glasgow where Henry met fellow students, William Gaskell and John Cropper, and they became life-long friends and colleagues. The estimated cost to study was between 16 and 17 pounds per annum and covered class fees, books and accommodation which was either lodging at a boarding house in town or boarding of campus with a professor. Henry supplemented his study money by taking services at Unitarian churches as opportunities presented itself.2,3

Henry lived during the Victorian era when Queen Victoria, a Protestant by faith, reigned from 1837 to 1901. This time period is also referred to as Britain’s ‘golden age’, an era of peace and prosperity, industrial, engineering and technological revolution, as well as medical discoveries and religious revival. Living and health standards improved, although social inequality continued to exist.6

   2. His wife

Henry married Mary Brandreth, the daughter of Anne Grundy (? – 1874) and John Brandreth (1771 – 1845) from Lees, Cheshire (now Greater Manchester), England. Mary was born on 28 May 1803 at Bolton, Lancashire (now part of Greater Manchester).2-4,7-9 READ MORE on the Brandreths.Henry and Mary were married on 26 June 1827 at St Peters, Parish Bolton Le Moors, Lancashire by Curate Thos Fogg. Witnesses at their matrimonial ceremony were Mary’s father, John Brandreth, cousin John Brandreth, and sisters Hannah and Jane Brandreth, as well as Emily Jane Green, sister of Henry Green.2,3,10

NOTE: Sarah Tanner (see reference 3), who has transcribed a large portion of correspondence and other documents of the Green family spanning over two generations, is the wife of a descendant of Emily Green. Tony Jamison (see reference 6) is the great-great-grandson of Henry and Mary Green and has in his possession copies of the memoirs of Isabella Green, their daughter.

Mary died at the age of 68 on 14 June 1871 at Knutsford and was buried in the Brook Street churchyard on 17 June 1871. Mary’s mother Anne Brandreth, who came to live with the Green family after her husband John Brandreth’s death, continued to live with her granddaughters, Emily, Mary and Isabella until her death in May 1874. She was suffering from dementia for some time before her death.2,3,9

One of Mary’s closest friends was Elizabeth Gaskell (1810 – 1865), a renowned novelist and biographer who gave Jane Austin (1775 – 1817) credit for her influence on her own writings. Elizabeth considered Mary as an intimate friend “to whom I can open my mind to”. Elizabeth was born on 19 September 1810 in London as Elizabeth Cleghorn Stevenson and grew up with her aunt, Hannah Lumb (née Holland), in Knutsford. She was a devout church member at Brook Street Chapel. Even after Elizabeth married Rev William Gaskell (1805 – 1884) in 1832, and moved to Manchester where he was vicar at Cross Street Unitarian Chapel, Mary and Elizabeth kept contact through correspondence and regular visits. Elizabeth most likely met William through Mary’s husband, Henry. Henry and William were colleagues and lifelong friends since their days as Glasgow students. The Green and Gaskell daughters also became good friends – their many letters to each other were evident of their close friendships. Both William and Elizabeth were buried at Brooks Street Chapel.2,3,11-15

   3. His career

After Henry completed his Unitarian theological training Renshaw Street Chapel, Liverpool in 1822, he continued with further studies at the University of Glasgow. In between he delivered sermons where needed. In 1822, he conducted a a sermon at Unitarian Baptist Chapel in Bessels Green, Kent, where his uncle Samuel Green was a member. For six months (May to October 1824), he also assisted for 21 Sundays with services at Earl Street Unitarian Chapel in Maidstone in Kent where his parents were members. Here he earned 22 pounds for his ministerial work, which could come in handy while studying at the University of Glasgow. John and Ann Green must have felt much pride seeing their son standing in the pulpit! After he graduated in April 1825, Henry went on to teach at the school of Unitarian Reverend John Relly Beard in Greengate, Salford, Lancashire and by 1826 was vicar for one year in Hanley, Staffordshire, England. While there, he also helped out at the congregation in Diss. In early 1827, Henry moved to Knutsford in Cheshire to commence his full-time ministry on 7 January 1827, where he remained for 46 years as the local minister at Brook Street Chapel.2,3,7,9,15,16The Brook Street church building looks more like an old farm house or a school hostel than an archetypal church. There was a very valid reason, though, why the building was designed to be as inconspicuous as possible when it was built in the late 1680s. The dissenters (non-conformists) had a genuine fear that freedom of persecution and the right to public worship could be withdrawn at any time, even though the Declaration of Indulgence was passed in 1687. This declaration allowed dissenters, such as Unitarians and Baptists (Reformed Calvinists), to appoint their own pastors and meet in legal places such as licensed homes. Before this, and particularly after the passing of the 1662 Act of Uniformity which promoted one political allegiance and one church, non-conformists had to meet and worship in secret. Being caught could result in being fined, imprisoned or exiled. People were forced to attend the services of the state’s Church of England or risk prosecution. In 1689, the Act of Toleration allowed dissenters to leave the Anglican Church of England and become a member of a non-conformist church.15,17

Unitarians specifically, believe in God as one entity, thus the concept of a Triune God (one God in three persons, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit) is rejected. Furthermore is Jesus Christ seen as a mere man inspired by God and in service of God. His divinity and holiness are denied. The infallibility of the Bible is repudiated and various views of God are accommodated. Unitarian beliefs originated in Poland in the 16th century and spread to Transylvania (Romania), England, Wales and the United States of America. The Unitarian church was declared a formal denomination in England in 1774.17

Ministers always played a significant role in town affairs. Apart from ministering to their congregation, their involvement could extend to social, musical and literary events, teaching and education and philanthropy. Some would even explore the politics and sciences. Henry was certainly a busy man, too. In 1838, Henry moved his family to a larger premises with a barn, known as Heathfield House at Tabley. This he did because the supplementary income he received from the family business, Haley Mill in Maidstone, Kent, ceased. His father and brothers, who were running the business were declared bankrupt and the mill had to be sold. By converting the barn into a school room, he could generate more income and for the next 20 years he ran a successful school for boys. When he retired from teaching, his daughters opened a school for girls that operated for 10 years.2,3,15,18

During his time at Brook Street Chapel, Henry developed the Sunday school. He also wanted a hall to be added to enhance the teaching and social activities of the chapel, but this only materialised in 1886 after his death. Henry Green was one of the chief townsmen of Knutsford and inspired local people to read and study, and encouraged the donation of books to the borrowing library at the chapel which was opened in 1833. He also gave free lectures on natural science and other interesting topics. He was a trustee and vice-president of the Literary Institute, endorsed the Working Men’s Library and was one of the promoters of the Savings Bank in Knutsford. He was also an examiner to the Unitarian Home Missionary Board (later called the Unitarian College Manchester), where the working-class could be trained as Unitarian ministers. This College was founded in 1854 by Rev William Gaskell and Rev John Relly Beard, Henry’s good friends. Henry had a specific interest in emblematic literature and wrote and edited many articles and books related to this topic. In 1859, he also published the book Knutsford, Its Traditions and History.2,3,14 His last work was published in 1872. He was the author of several works and editor of many. His total amount of writings comprises 57 works in 308 publications in 6 languages available in 3 136 library holdings. Many of his writings have been reprinted in the 20th century.7,16,17,19

   4. His death

Henry resigned in June 1872 and finally retired on 31 December 1872 at the age of 71 years. By then his eyesight deteriorated to near total blindness. Henry received an eye operation to improve his sight and was recovering well, when he suddenly died on 9 August 1873 at 12:30 pm. Reverend Henry Green was buried in the Brook Street Chapel churchyard, Knutsford on 13 August 1873 in the same grave-site as his wife. He was succeeded in 1873 by Rev J.B. Lloyd, who ministered at the Chapel for 12 years.2,3,15,16,20   5. His children

5.1 Emily

Emily was born on 10 August 1828, Knutsford. She was christened by Rev William Gaskell at Bolton Le Moors, Bolton, Lancashire. Emily and her sisters ran a popular school for girls on her father’s property from 1857 to 1867. After the death of her parents and her grandmother, Emily together with her sister Mary Ellen, moved to London where she died in 1915, aged 87. Emily never married and had no children.3,75.2 John Philip

Henry and Mary’s second child, John Philip, was born on 2 January 1831 at Knutsford and baptied by Henry’s friend, Rev John Cropper, at Bolton Le Moors. He was educated at his father’s school at Heathfield, Knutsford. Thereafter, at the age of 16, he enrolled at the newly established University of London in London in 1846. Just as his father was prohibited to study at the Universities of Cambridge and Oxford and the basis of his non-conformist religious background, so was Philip. He obtained a BA Law degree 1849. In March 1850, Philip left for the University of Heidelberg in Germany where he attended lectures on Roman Law for three months. Philip embarked on a tour to Italy in June 1850 returning via Austria back to Germany, before departing for Knutsford.  For the duration of 1851, John taught at the Heathfield boys school. 2,3

He returned to London in January 1852 to commence working towards being called to the Bar. He completed his LLB degree in 1853. Around 1855 Philip converted to Roman Catholicism, which caused much disturbance in his family. He was called to bar on 17 November 1856.  Still, it took several years to gain a foothold in the profession. Philip finally left for Bombay in British India in 1860 to take up the position of advocate. In 1868, he was appointed Barrister-at-Law, by 1869 he served as Acting Remembrancer of Legal Affairs until 18 May 1871, and by 1873 he was Judge of the High Court in Bombay. Philip served in the latter position until his serious stoke on 9 December 1879 which affected his speech ad left him paralysed on one side. After serving 16 years in India, he was forced to retire at the age of 48 years. 2,3,7,8He married Theresa Herbert (ca 1840 – 1872) on 29 Dec 1868 at Lady’s Chapel Roman Catholic Church, Marylebone, London. The couple returned to Bombay on 23 Nov 1869. Due to continuous ill health after suffering a miscarriage, Theresa returned to England.  Phillip accompanied her, but had to return to India due to his responsibilities there. He left on 1 January 1869 on the Tantallon Castle, a three-masted sailing ship that was built in 1865 by Robert Steel & Co. at Greenock, Renfrewshire, Scotland – Phillip kept a journal of his sea voyage back to India. Theresa, however, never returned to India but remained in England where she died childless in 1872.2,3,7,8,21,22Philip remarried on 26 June 1874 in Benevento, Kingdom of Italy (now Italy Republic), a city that lies 50 km northeast of Napoli (Naples). His second wife was Cecilia Anna Maria Guisippe Ternsas Marcellini Pacca. Her father was Marquis Pacca, member of an ancient aristocratic Neapolitan Italian family. Philip and Cecilia had three sons, Charles Francis (Joseph) “Carlo” (*2 April 1875, Bombay, British India), Henry Edward (Joseph Bartholomew) (*19 March 1876, Benevento, Italy) and Philip Anthony (Mark) (*19 October 1877, Bombay, British India).2,3,7-9After his stroke in December 1879 in India, Philip returned with his family to Naples in Italy on 21 January 1880, where Cecilia continued to care for him. In July 1883, they traveled to Casamicciola on the Island of Ischia – a volcanic island in the Gulf of Naples – to spend some time at the special baths there, for the benefit of Philip’s health. The baths contained mineral-rich thermal waters coming from hot springs. On Saturday in the evening of 28 July 1883, while the family were in the lobby of Hotel Piccola Sintinilla, an earthquake hit the volcanic island, situated on the eastern coast of Italy in the Gulf of Naples.  The lobby’s roof caved in on top of the people. Cecilia and the three boys miraculously survived but the 52-year old Philip didn’t. His body was not recovered until late Monday afternoon on 30 August. His widow continued to stay in Italy until the boys had to go to school and then returned to England. She died on 26 September 1925 at West Bridgford, Nothinghamshire, England.2,3,23

5.3 Baby boy (twin)

He was stillborn as a one of a twin on 26 August 1833. His sister, Louisa, survived.2,3

5.4 Anne Louisa (twin)

Anne Louisa was born on 26 August 1833 at Knutsford as one of twins. Her brother was stillborn. She was christened at Brook Street Unitarian Church in Knutsford by her father’s friend and colleague Rev. John Cropper.2,3 It seems as if her family called her Annie, but her great granddaughter knew her by her second name, Louisa.24

In February 1863, at the age of 30, Louisa married the widower, Charles Falcon (10 March 1810 – 16 February 1875) at Altrincham, Cheshire. He was the son of Emma Helen Christian (1773 – ?) and Maitland Falcon (1769 – 1848), a banker and insurance broker. Louisa died in 1899 at the age of 66 years, 24 years after her husband had passed away.2,3,9,24

The couple had four children: Maxwell Gordon (*17 November 1863, †30 April 1865, Ω3 May 1865, Brook Street churchyard), Mary Emma (December 1865 – ?), Isabel Maud Mary (June 1867 – 1970, Wandsworth, London) and Charles Gordon (1869 – ?).2,3,7,9,24 Isabel Falcon was engaged trice before she finally – at the age of 35 years – became the second wife of the widower, Henry Montague “Monty” Chevallier-Cobbold (1861 – 1917), a coffee merchant and owner of the Newton Estate in St Andrew, Jamaica. He was the son of Henry Chevallier-Cobbold (1832 – 1902) and Louisa Ann Pocock (1839 – 1861). Monty and Isabel were married at St Mary’s Church, Cadogan St, Chelsea, London, on 17 February 1903. Isabel became the instant mother of five step-children (four girls and one boy between the ages of eight and sixteen years) from Monty’s first marriage. Monty and Isabel also had two sons from their own union, namely Gordon (30 December 1903, London – 2 January 2004, Berkshire) and Maitland “Mac” (1905, London – 2000, Surrey).7,24,25

According to Monty and Isabel’s granddaughter, Gillian “Gill” Oliver (née Chevallier-Cobbold) (*1936): “Grandpa was a complete rogue and went through both of his wife’s fortunes betting on the stock exchange. When he died in 1917 at the age of 56 years, he left Grannie penniless and a friend kindly paid Daddy’s – [Gordon C-Cobbold] – school fees at Westminster School, London. The fees were quite substantial as the school was and still is one of the top public schools in the country.”24

In August 2022, Isabel (Falcon) Chevallier-Cobbold’s only surviving water-colour painting, as far as we know, was united with her granddaughter Gill, the daughter of Gordon Chevallier-Cobbold (1903 – 2004) and Margaret “Rita” Smith (1903 – 1996).25 READ HERE how this came about, in an article published in September 2022 on page 9-11 of the newsletter, Die Genealoog (The Genealogist) of the Gauteng North Branch of the Genealogical Society of South Africa.

5.5 Mary Ellen

Ellen was born on 28 January 1835 at Knutsford and was also christened by Rev. John Cropper in June 1841 at Knutsford. For ten years, from 1857 to 1867, she taught at the school for girls from with her sisters. She died in London in 1921 at the age of 86 years. Ellen never married.2,35.6 Alice

Alice was born in ca 1838 at Knutsford. She died at the age of four years in 1842. Apart from one photo of the lovely, little Alice, nothing more is known about her life.3,4,26,27 It seems as if Alice struggled with her health and that she may not have reached adulthood.

5.7 Isabella

Isabella was born on 13 January 1841 at Knutsford. She also, with her sisters Emily and Mary, taught at the school for girls at Knutsford. All the siblings were avid writers and many of their letters to each other have been preserved. The Green sisters, but in particular Isabella, were very good friends with the Gaskell sisters, Marianne (*1834), Margaret “Meta” (*1837), Florence “Flossie” (*1842) and Julia (*1946). They all grew up together, and even when their ways parted, they continued to correspond extensively with one another. At the time of Isabella’s marriage to Arthur Andrew Jamison on 4 November 1875 at Weybridge, Surrey, England, she was 34 years. Isabella and Arthur became my husband’s great-great-great-grandparents. They had three children. READ MORE on Isabella Green and her husband, Arthur Jamison.2,3,11,14,28


NOTE ON REFERENCES 2 & 3: Isabella’s memoirs as well as an extensive collection of letters, diaries, journals, deeds, inventories, legal papers, family pedigrees, photos, lecture notes and sermons, books and manuscript poems, all related to various Green and Jamison family members and their friends, including the Gaskells, are kept at the John Rylands University Library, Special Collections, at the University of Manchester. These documents are an invaluable treasure of information on the lives of individuals – their social and political circumstances and views, their joys and their challenges – spanning over 140 years from 1830 to 1971. This collection was sold to the university in 2008 on behalf of the Jamison family by Jean Jamison, a great-granddaughter of Dr Arthur and Isabella (Green) Jamison, and my husband’s aunt. Many of these documents have been transcribed by Sarah Tanner and are available to read at http://www.stanner.net/family letters (copyright applies). It is well worth the read!



REFERENCE 24: Gillian Oliver (née Chevallier-Cobbold) of Finchampstead, England, shared photos of family members as well as of priceless heirloom in her safekeeping that belonged to our Green ancestors and some of their descendants. She is the great-great-granddaughter of Henry and Mary Green, and daughter of Gordon and Rita Chevallier-Cobbold. Gillian certainly succeeded in bringing these ancestors to life for me. I am most grateful for her generosity!


  1. Henry Green. England and Wales Non-Conformist Record Indexes (RG4-8), 1588-1977, database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:FWXH-2MG : 11 December 2014), Henry Green, 23 Jun 1801, Birth; citing p. 131, Chelford, Penshurst, Kent, record group RG5, Public Record Office, London
  2. Papers of the Jamison Family (1830-1971), Box 1/2 (etc.), John Rylands University Library, University of Manchester. https://archiveshub.jisc.ac.uk/search/archives/5c8d8d63-e857-3002-b880-f6e317346acf
  3. Tanner, S. 2008. Henry Green 1801-1872: Nineteenth century letters written by the Green families of Knutsford in Cheshire. http://www.stanner.net/Family Letters/preface nineteenth century letters
  4. Rob Jamison: Family portraits 2016. https://www.photobox.co.uk/my/album
  5. The monthly repository of theology and general literature. Vol 18 & 20. https://books.google.co.za/books
  6. Victorian Era. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Victorian_era
  7. Photos, books, certificates and original paintings in possession of Tony Jamison, Randfontein, South Africa, great-great-grandson of Henry Green
  8. John Brandreth. A genealogical survey of the peerage of Britain as well as the royal families of Europe. The Peerage. http://www.thepeerage.com/p51990
  9. Memoirs of Isabella Green. Copies in possession of Tony Jamison, Randfontein, South Africa
  10. Marriage of Henry Green. England Marriages, 1538–1973 , database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NNLK-12W : 10 December 2014), Henry Green and Mary Brandreth, 26 Jun 1827; citing Bolton-Le-Moors, Lancashire, England, reference it5, p74, no220; FHL microfilm 1,966,478.
  11. Elizabeth Gaskell. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_Gaskell
  12. William Gaskell. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Gaskell
  13. Chapple, J.A.V. 1997 Elizabeth Gaskell. The early years. 1Ed. Manchester University Press: Manchester. https://books.google.co.za/books
  14. Letters of Mrs Gaskell’s Daughters, 1856-1914. 2012. Irene Wiltshire, Eds. Humanities-eBooks, LLP: Penrith. https://books.google.co.za/books
  15. Brook Street Chapel. http://www.brookstreetchapel.org/index
  16. Payne, G.A. 1934 An Ancient Chapel. Brook Street Chapel, Knutsford. The Banbury Guardian Office: Banbury
  17. The Unitarian Church. https://www.unitarian.org.uk/pages/history
  18. The monthly repository and review of theology and general literature. Vol 4. https://books.google.co.za/books
  19. Green, Henry 1801-1873. WorldCat Identities. http://worldcat.org/identities/lccn-n85273609/
  20. Death notice of Henry Green. England Deaths and Burials, 1538-1991, database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JC3T-W3T : 24 December 2014), Henry Green, 13 Aug 1873; citing , reference p117 cn2; FHL microfilm 886,623
  21. Tantallon Castle (1). http://www.bandcstaffregister.com/page204.html
  22. Family tree notes by Jean Jamison, made available by Katie Taylor form Germany, October 2017
  23. Ischia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ischia
  24. Information and photos received on 5 February 2021 and thereafter, from Gillian Oliver (née Chevallier-Cobbold) of Finchampstead, Berkshire, England, great-great-granddaughter of Henry and Mary Green
  25. The Cobbold Family History Trust. https://family-tree.cobboldfht.com/
  26. Knutsford. Jane Austen’s World. https://janeaustensworld.wordpress.com/tag/knutsford/
  27. Knutsford Racecourse. http://www.greyhoundderby.com/Knutsford%20Racecourse.html
  28. Marriage of Isabella Green. Weybridge, St James, 1837-1884, p170. Surrey, England, Marriages, 1754-1937. http://www.interactive.ancestry.com/4779/40761_312082/145338