George TESTER (1819–1872)
His wife Mrs Charlotte TESTER, née Carr (1820–1877)
Their son Richard Carr TESTER (1852–1877)
St Giles section: Row 2, Grave A28
Front of grave marker
to the Memory of
who died July 5th 1872
Aged 51 years
Back of grave marker
this faces west and is in a
better state of preservation
Caroline Charlotte Tester
wife of George Tester
who died April 12, 1877
Richard Carr Tester son
of George and Charlotte Tester
who died on [April … 1877]
G.T. / 1872
C. C. T. / 1877
George Tester was born at 27 High Street, Oxford in 1819 and baptised at All Saints Church on 26 September, the youngest son of the Oxford fishmonger Samuel Tester (born c.1792) and his wife Susan (born in Uxbridge in c.1790). George’s older brother John was also baptised at All Saints Church in 1817, and his three younger sisters were also baptised at there: Elizabeth (1822), Mary Ann (1824), and Ellen (1826).
George’s father Samuel Tester was a fishmonger at 27 High Street (one of the shops demolished in the mid-1880s to make way for Brasenose College’s High Street frontage) from at least 1816.
At the time of the 1841 census George Tester (21) was still at home with his parents at 27 High Street, and both he and his older brothers Robert and John were working as fishmongers.
By 1843 George was working as a fishmonger in London.
Caroline Charlotte Carr was born in Oxford in 1820 and baptised at St Giles’s Church on 19 May. She was the daughter of the wheelwright Richard Carr and his wife Sarah Towers. Eight of her siblings were also baptised at that church: John Richard Towers Carr (1811), Alfred and Charles Carr (baptised together in 1815, but Alfred born in 1814), President Ferris Carr (1817), Cornelius Vincent Carr (1818), Maria Isabella Carr (1822), Ellen Selina Carr (1824), and Paul Theophilus Carr (1827). Her family’s home was described as being near St Giles’s Church.
By 1843 Caroline was living in London.
On 29 May 1843 George Tester and Caroline Charlotte Carr were both living in London in the parish of St George’s Church, Hanover Square when they took out a marriage licence. They were duly married there shortly afterwards, and had the following children:
- Alice Mary Tester (born at St Giles Road, Oxford in 1846 and baptised at St Giles’s Church on 8 January 1847)
- Samuel John Tester (born at North Parade, Oxford in 1848 and baptised at St Giles’s Church on 16 August)
- Richard Carr Tester (born at North Parade, Oxford in 1850 and baptised at St Giles’s Church on 26 August).
The couple evidently came back to Oxford soon after their wedding, living first at St Giles Road (the south end of the Woodstock and Banbury Roads, and at North Parade by 1848.
At the time of the 1851 census George (30), described as a journeyman fishmonger, was living at North Parade with Charlotte (27) and their three children, plus a 17-year-old servant girl.
The situation was unchanged in 1861, except that George now described himself as a fishmonger.
In May 1868 George Tester complained to the Oxford Local Board about the flowing of the Park Town sewage into the Cherwell.
At the time of the 1871 census their address was given as 2 St Giles Road East, which was the south end of the Banbury Road; but this may be a mistake for 2 North Parade. All the family was at home: their son Samuel (21) was now a fishmonger like his father, and Richard (19) was a medical student.
George Tester died in 1872:
† George Tester died at 2 North Parade at the age of 51 on 5 July 1872 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 10 July (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church).
His death notice in Jackson's Oxford Journal read simply: “July 5, at 2, North Parade, St Giles's, deeply lamented by his family and a large circle of friends, Mr. George Tester, aged 51 years; youngest son of Mr. Tester, of the High-street, in this city.”
His effects came to under £1,500, and his wife and daughter Alice were his executors.
His son Richard Carr Tester passed the Anatomical and Physiological examination of the Royal College of Surgeons in April 1873, but died four years later:
† Richard Carr Tester died at North Parade at the age of 24 in April 1877 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 10 April (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church).
George Tester’s widow died just a week after her son:
† Mrs Caroline Charlotte Tester née Carr died at 2 North Parade the age of 56 on 12 April 1877 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 16 April (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church).
Her death notice in Jackson’s Oxford Journal read: “April 12, at No. 2, North Parade, St. Giles’s. Caroline Charlotte, relict of Mr. George Tester – having survived her youngest son only seven days.” Her effects came to under £200, and her daughter Miss Alice Mary Tester of 2 North Parade was her executor.
George’s father, the fishmonger Samuel Tester
Samuel Tester outlived his son by seven years, dying in 1879 at 27 High Street where he had lived for over 60 years. The Tester family tomb, where George’s parents and three of his siblings are buried, can still be seen in the churchyard of All Saints Church (now Lincoln College library). It reads:
Samuel Tester, died 1 May 1879, aged 86. Susan wife of Samuel Tester died 20 April 1854, aged 67. John son of Samuel & Susan Tester, died 16 August 1845, aged 27. Elizabeth Whiting, daughter of Samuel & Susan Tester, died 25 October 1880 aged 58 years. Also Robert, son of Samuel & Susan Tester, died 30 March 18– aged 68 years.
His effects came to under £1,000, and his son Robert Tester, fishmonger, was his executor.
Surviving children of George & Caroline Tester
- Alice Mary Tester (born 1846) is hard to trace after 1871. She may be the Alice Mary Tester who married John Passmore May in the Winslow district of Cheshire in 1881 (third quarter)
- Samuel John Tester (born 1848) was described as a clerk living at the south end of the Banbury Road when on 15 April 1879 at Ss Philip & James’s Church, he married Elizabeth Lucas, daughter of the printer Thomas Lucas. At the time of the 1881 census Samuel (38), described as an annuitant, was living at Fern Villa, 29 Worcester Terrace (the present Richmond Road) with his wife Elizabeth (28) and their son George (1), plus a boarder and a servant. He died at the age of 67 in 1916 (reg. Headington district second quarter).