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The Family of Jacob Walter of Charlton Adam, London and Liverpool

Jacob Walter (1819-1861) was the son of Philip Walter and Susanna Trotman. He married Caroline Swayne (c.1820-1848) the daughter of James and Maria Swayne, in Bloomsbury in 1840. Jacob and Caroline had children including: Fanny Caroline Walter (1842-1919) and Jane Matilda Walter (1844-1901), both girls being born in Holborn. Jacob was a legal clerk who went into business as 'Swayne and Walter' with his father-in-law. However, by January 1843 the business was in trouble. Jacob appeared before Edward Holroyd at the Court of Bankruptcy in Basinghall Street on 27th April 1843 and was eventually imprisoned in the London and Middlesex Debtors Prison in August 1844. He appears to have worked spasmodically in the intervening period and to have been in prison for about a year. Jacob's frequent changes of address as his situation deteriorated are recorded in court proceedings: "24 months at 2, Red Lion Passage [off Fleet Street] then 2, Museum Street, High Holborn; 2, Charles Street, Commercial Road; Boswell Court, Queen's Square; 10, Warwick Court, Holborn and 2, Princes Street, Bedford Row."

At that time the London and Middlesex Debtors Prison was located in Whitecross Street (on the corner of Fore Street) in Cripplegate. Built on the site of the former Peacock's Brewhouse between 1813 and 1815, it segregated debtors from convicted felons. It closed in 1870. It seems that James Swayne had a history of insolvency. The Law Advertiser of 1830 cites 'Swayne, James, the elder (sued as James Swayne) formerly of No. 8 New Gravel-lane, Shadwell, afterwards of No. 9, New Gravel-lane, chandler and coal-undertaker, afterwards of the George public-house, George-yard, Whitechapel, victualler, afterwards of No. 56, Silver-street, Stepney, and late of No. 4, Coleman-street-buildings, assistant to a sherrif's officer. At the Court, in Portugal-street, Lincoln's Inn Fields, Middlesex.

After Jacob was released from prison, the family moved to Liverpool, and Jacob seems to have obtained employment in the same department as his brother Henry Walter (the Court buildings in Dale Street). Caroline died in 1848. In 1851 Jacob (listed as 'Samuel') was living with Fanny and Jane and Susan Walter [his mother Susannah visiting from Somerset]. A Susannah Walter died in West Derby district in 1854. Jacob married Jane Owen (1833-1892) from Flintshire in 1852 and had a daughter Emma Elizabeth Walter (b.1853) {and possibly a son Edwin Jacob Walter (1855-1856} . Jane was probably the sister of Henry Owen a licensed victualler living in Crown Street.

Unfortunately Jacob's difficulties did not end with his move from London. He was dismissed from his position with the Corporation in 1855, following which testimonials were organised for him. The reason for his dismissal is not known, but his imprisonment may have come to light and been deemed incompatible with his role within the criminal prosecutions department. He may have been an embarrassment to his brother Henry. However, placement of advertisements in the Liverpool Mercury inviting contributions to his testimonials suggests he was was well-thought of, and/or that he had been unfairly treated.

Jacob is listed as a victualler living at 2 Mulberry Street in a Liverpool directory for 1857. By 1859 he had become an estate agent specialising in licensed premises, with office premises in Atherton Buildings,19 Dale Street and advertising regularly in the Liverpool Mercury. One such advertisement in 1860 was for the Temperance Hotel in Cheltenham, which was taken over by his brother George Walter. Jacob was visiting Stanney Grange, Cheshire as an estate agent at the time of the 1861 census. He died in Liverpool later that year. Probate on his estate of < £300 was awarded to his widow, Jane. She became a lodging house keeper in Birkenhead in 1881 and 1891, living with their daughter Emma who was a music teacher.

Jacob's daughter Fanny Caroline Walter (1842-1919) married John Grice (c.1841) in 1863 and had children. including: Walter James Grice (1864-1951). Alfred Tillotson Grice (1867-1917), Emily Constance Grice (b.1869), and Margaret Grice (b.1872). Walter James married Sarah Emma Maylor (1864-1937) in 1890 and had children including Eustace Maylor Grice (b. 1894) married Alphonsine Boirot in 1921 in Bourges, France; Stella Grice (b.1897). Alfred Tillotson married Edith Woollam (1874-1940) in 1894 and had children including Nellie Grice (b.1897) and Arthur Grice (b.1901). In 1911 the widowed Fanny Caroline was living in one room at 127, King Edward's Road, Swansea with her daughter Emily Constance who was Laundry Superintendent at Swansea Hospital.

Jacob's daughter Jane Matilda Walter (1844-1901) married Thomas Hart in 1865. By 1881 she had been widowed and was a lodging house keeper living in Bishopwearmouth, Durham with her son, Edwin James Hart (1866-1928). Edwin James Hart married Frances Emma Trewhitt (1866-1947) in Sunderland in 1893. She was one of a number of children born to Benjamin Trewhitt (a pawnbroker) and his wife Mary Ann.

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