John CASTELL (1791–1873)
His wife Mrs Hannah CASTELL, née Carpenter (1805–1859)
Their son Henry Thomas Stamp CASTELL (1846–1896)
With a mention of their daughter Miss Hannah CASTELL (1832–1878)
St Paul section: Row 21, Grave E19 [St Paul ref. Q18]

John Castell

 

IN
LOVING MEMORY OF
JOHN CASTELL
WHO DIED JAN 31, 1873
AGED 83 [actually 81]

 

ALSO OF
HANNAH HIS WIFE
WHO DIED FEB. 8 1859
AGED 54

 

ALSO OF
HANNAH THEIR DAUGHTER
WHO DIED AT NASSAU, BAHAMAS
JAN. 10 1878
AGED 42 [actually 45].

IN SPE CERTISSIMA

 

[Bostock was also able to read
an inscription to
HENRY THOMAS STAMP CASTELL

Archdeacon of Demerara
who died in 1896 aged 46]

 

The headstone must have been erected after the death of John Castle in 1875, 25 years after his wife was buried here. It matches exactly that of his sisters Anne & Maria Castell, and also that of Sarah Maria & Mary Castell (Mrs Bellamy), who were probably his great-nieces)

John Castell was born in Holywell, Oxford in 1791 and baptised at St Cross Church on 21 December. He was the son of John Castell senior and Hannah Hanks, who were married at St Cross Church on 8 December 1787. His six siblings were also baptised at that church: George (1788), Richard (1790), Anne (1794), Jane (1796), Hannah (1798), and Maria (1800).
For more on his sisters Miss Anne Castell and Miss Maria Castell, see their separate grave.

Hannah Carpenter was born in Churchill, Oxfordshire in 1805 and baptised there on 29 January. She was the daughter of James Carpenter and Elizabeth Stamp, who were both living in Sarsden when they were married at the church there on 9 April 1799. Hannah's sister Maria Elizabeth Carpenter was baptised at Churchill in 1800, and her brother James in 1802.

On 6 September 1831 at Churchill, John Castle of St Michael's parish, Oxford married Hannah Carpenter of Churchill. They had the following children:

  • Hannah Castell (born at 37 St John Street on 9 July 1832 and baptised at St Giles's Church on 5 August)
  • Maria Castell (born at 37 St John Street, Oxford in 1834 and baptised at St Giles's Church on 27 April);
    died aged 13 in 1847
  • John Castell (born at 37 St John Street, Oxford in 1836 and baptised at St Giles's Church on 31 July);
    died aged one year five months in 1837
  • Ellen Castle (born at 37 St John Street, Oxford in 1841 and baptised at St Giles's Church on 31 May)
  • Henry Thomas Stamp Castell (born at 37 St John Street, Oxford in 1846 and baptised at St Giles's Church on 3 June).

The couple settled at 37 St John Street in St Giles's parish, where the family was to live for the next forty years. By 1834 John Castell was a college servant, and Gardner's Directory for 1852 confirms that he worked at Balliol College.

Their elder son John Castell junior died aged one year five months near the end of 1837 and was buried in St Giles's churchyard on 5 December. (St Sepulchre's Cemetery did not open until 1848.)

At the time of the 1841 census John, described as a servant, was living at 37 St John Street with his wife Hannah and their three surviving children Hannah, Maria, and Ellen, plus his mother-in-law Elizabeth Carpenter and his sister-in-law Maria Carpenter.

Their youngest son Henry Thomas Stamp Castell was born in 1846.

Their daughter Maria Castle died in 1847, and her death notice in Jackson's Oxford Journal read: “Dec. 20, Maria, second daughter of Mr. John Castell, of St. John-street, aged 13.” She was buried in St Giles's churchyard on Christmas Eve.

At the time of the 1851 census John (59), still a college servant, was living at 37 St John Street with his wife Hannah (46) and their youngest children Ellen (9) and Henry (4), plus his widowed mother-in-law Mrs Elizabeth Carpenter (86). Their eldest daughter Hannah (18) is hard to find.

Mrs Hannah Castell died in 1859:

† Mrs Hannah Castell née Carpenter died at 37 St John Street at the age of 54 on 8 February 1859 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 12 February (burial recorded in the parish register of St Paul's Church).

Her death notice in Jackson's Oxford Journal read: “Feb. 7, aged 54, Hannah, the beloved wife of Mr. John Castell, of St. John-street, in this city.” The family appeared to favour St Paul's Church and were evidently allowed a plot in its section of the cemetery, even though they had always lived in the parish of St Giles.

In 1861 John (69) was home at 37 St John Street with his three surviving children: Hannah (26), who doubtless kept house for him; Ellen (20), who was a teacher; and Henry (14), who was a pupil teacher (and future Archdeacon of Demerara). They also had a lodger.

His daughter Ellen was married in 1865:

  • On 24 July 1865 at St Paul's Church, Oxford, Ellen Castell married Arthur Henry Thomas of the London & County Bank, Sittingbourne, Kent, the son of the printer Francis Thomas. The parish register oddly records that she lived in Upper Walton Street, but the announcement in Jackson's Oxford Journal stated that she lived in St John Street

In 1871 John (79) still described himself as a college servant, and was living at 37 St John Street with his eldest daughter Hannah (37), who was described as his housekeeper, plus a servant and an undergraduate lodger. His son Henry (24) is hard to find in the census and may already have gone abroad.

John Castell died in 1873:

† John Castell died at 37 St John Street at the age of 81 on 31 January 1873 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 6 February (burial recorded in the parish register of St Paul's Church).

His death notice in Jackson's Oxford Journal read simply: “Jan. 31, at 37, Saint John's-street, Mr. John Castell, aged 83 [actually 81].” His effects came to under £300, and his executor was his daughter Hannah.

Hannah Castle, the unmarried daughter of John & Hannah Castle (who had been her father's housekeeper at 37 St John Street in 1871) did not marry, went out to Nassau in the Bahamas at some time after her father's death in 1873, presumably to work with Addington Peel Venables, the former Curate of St Paul's Church, Oxford who had been Bishop of Nassau since 1863. He paid a visit to the Jericho area of Oxford in the early summer of 1875, and her decision may have been made then. She died at Nassau in at the age of 45 on 10 January 1878, and although she is not buried in St Sepulchre's Cemetery, she is mentioned on the family grave. Her personal effects came to under £450, and her executor was her sister Mrs Ellen Thomas of Surbiton.

Henry Thomas Stamp Castle, the youngest son of John & Hannah Castle (who disappeared from the British censuses after 1861) served as Archdeacon of Demerara in British Guiana and lived in its capital Georgetown. He came to London for his health around the beginning of December 1895 and stayed with his father-in-law, Jacob Henry Webb, a retired civil servant residing at 93 De Vere Gardens, Kensington. This shows that Castle was married, but the ceremony appears to have taken place abroad.

The Archdeacon was found drowned in the Serpentine in London a month later:

† Henry Thomas Stamp Castell died in London at the age of 46 on 5 January 1896 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 18 January (burial recorded in the parish register of St Paul's Church).

His hat was spotted in the Serpentine on 7 January, but his body was not found until after over four days of dredging, and the body was identified by his father-in-law.

An inquest was held at Westminster, and it was reported that as the gates of Kensington Gardens were closed at 4.30pm before the Archdeacon went out, which mean that he could only have got into the water off the bridge, or waded out through one of the arches through shallow water to where he was found. The Coroner stated that there was “a strong suspicion of suicide, but no direct evidence to that effect”, and the jury agreed to the open verdict of “found drowned”.


The only other surviving child of John & Hannah Castle
  • Ellen Castle, Mrs Thomas (born 1841) was the only child of the Castles who married, and in 1871 she was living at Canal Street, Leighton Buzzard with her husband Arthur Henry Thomas, who was a banker's clerk, and their 16-year-old servant girl. They went on to have four children: Gertrude Eleanor Thomas (born in Andover, Hampshire in 1875), Margaret Jane Thomas and Francis Arthur Castell Thomas (born in Surbiton, Surrey in 1877 and 1879 respectively), and Hilda Frances Thomas (born in Eastbourne in 1881). At the time of the 1881 census Ellen (39) and Arthur (40), who was now a bank manager, were living at 69 Terminus Road, Eastbourne with their first three children, plus a cook and housemaid. They were still at that address in 1891 with their four children. In 1901 they were at 10 West Terrace, Eastbourne with their three daughters, and in 1911 they were living at 3 Arlington Road, Eastbourne with all four of their children. Ellen's husband Arthur died in 1918 at the age of 77, and Ellen died at 3 Arlington Road on 26 October 1924. Her effects came to £7,799 17s. 5d., and her executor was her son Francis, who was now himself a bank manager.

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