My search for my Merry ancestors started many years ago when I asked the record office to do some research for me to find the marriage of my GGGGrandfather Ezekiel Walker to Anne.  At that time I only knew Ezekial's wife as Anne Walker no maiden name from some original burial deeds from Maryport in Cumberland, England dated 1871, which are very, very old and now very, very frail, pictured left and reads...

Crosscannonby Burial Board

30th Day of October 1871

Mr. Ezekiel Walker for internment of his mother aged 81 years who died on the 29th day of October 1871 to be buried at 3 oclock on Wednesday the 1st day of November 1871 in unconsecrated ground by the Rev. Mr Winsthrop

Digging grave 81/2 feet gravespace L 135 cost was 9 shillings and sixpence.

I had searched myself for many years for their marriage with no luck.   Then I decided to ask the record office to do a search to find the marriage for me.  I received a reply some time later with the answer that the office had found the marriage on 6 July 1815 in Annan in Scotland where Ezekial and Anne eloped and were married legally in Scotland but the marriage would have been illegal in England and was what they called an 'iregular marriage' and that 'Ezekial Walker married Anne Nellie' and were both of Cumberland, England.



Many frustrating years went by and had no luck tracing any 'Anne Nellie of Maryport' who married my Ezekial Walker, until a stroke of luck when I was at the record office doing some research on the IGI when the records were on CD only and typing in Ezekial Walker up came his marriage to 'Anne Merry'on 6 July 1815 in Annan in Scotland, her surname had been transcribed incorrectly by the record office.  Obviously the records had been transcribed and added to the IGI in the years since the research had been done at the office and the surname transcribed correctly as 'Merry' not 'Nellie'.


It felt somewhat like winning the lottery when I found out this information and started my following Merry research in the years after.  The early registers for Maryport are very patchy and I suspect some entries and pages missing but have managed to peice together the following information on the Merry families of Maryport from the IGI, parish registers and other records.

There is more information on the Merry surname to be found at David Sylvester's site:

The Merry Family Network Homepage


The registers for Maryport in Cumberland, England show that Thomas Merry had eight children.  There is a Thomas Merry and Mary Smith noted in the Maryport registers, they had a son Thomas Merry born 23 July 1778 at Maryport.  To date I have not been able to find a marriage for the couple and  I suspect it could be the same Thomas later married to Anne Dawson and Sarah Millican and Thomas was married three times but have no proof of this therefore have not included this.

Thomas Merry and Anne had 7 children.  Thomas was noted as a mariner in the registers and to date have been unable to find a marriage for the couple, Anne's maiden name was Dawson.

Generation No. 1

1. WILLIAM MERRY, b. 29 June 1777.

2. MARGARET MERRY, b. 27 February 1780, Maryport, Cumberland, England.

3.  JANE MERRY, b. 13 March 1785, Kirk German, Isle of Man, England.

4. DAVID MERRY, b. 19 March 1788, Maryport, Cumberland; d. 28 June 1802, Maryport,  Cumberland.

5. ANNE MERRY, b. 31 January 1790, Maryport; d. 29 October 1871, Maryport, Cumberland.

6. MARY MERRY, b. 16 February 1792, Maryport, Cumberland.

7.  JOHN MERRY, b. 17 May 1795, Maryport, Cumberland; d. 2 June 1795, Maryport, Cumberland.

Anne died before 1797 and Thomas remarried to Sarah Millican 21 April 1797 at Crosscanonby, Cumberland, England.

"Marriages April 21st 1797 Crosscannonby Parish Registers
Mirria Thomas  Widower and Mariner both of this parish by Banns
Millcan Sarah her mark and widower
Witnesses:  William Corkindale and William Mackey".

Children of Thomas Merry and Sarah Millican were:

JOHN MERRY  b.  5 November 1797, Maryport, Cumberland, England

SARAH MERRY b.  29 December 1799, Maryport, Cumberland, England

BARNS MERRY b. 11 April 1802, Maryport, Cumberland, England

BARNES MERRY b. 22 April 1804, Maryport, Cumberland, England

I have not been able to find any information about Barnes Merry so presumably he died in infancy.

John and Sarah Merry, brother and sister, never married and are on the 1851 Census for Maryport in Nelson St, Maryport.


Merry  John  66  Head Bread Baker Isle Of Man, ?         
Merry  Sarah  50  Sister Bread Baker Maryport,

John Merry died in September of 1851.  Sarah stayed in Nelson St, in Maryport and on the 1861 Census her stepsister Jane Merry reappears. Jane had been on the 1841 census with her sister Sarah in Nelson St, then disappeared on the 1851 Census to be back in 1861.


31 Nelson St, Maryport
Merry  Jane  76  unmarried Head Bakehousekeeper , Isle Of Man
Merry  Sarah  60  unmarried Sister Assistant Mary Port, Cumberland
Drummond  Jane  55  Daughter widow Assistant Mary Port, Cumberland
Drummond  Ann Jane 18  unmarried Grand Daughter Nurse Mary Port, Cumberland
Mulholland  Margaret  2 Months  Great Grandaughter Infant Mary Port, Cumberland
Mulholland  Sarah  28  Grand Daughter married Lodger Mary Port, Cumberland
Drummond  Tom  20  unmarried Grand Son Sailor Mary Port, Cumberland

SARAH MERRY b.  29 December 1799, Maryport, Cumberland, England was on the 1871 census as Servant to Margaret Drummond wife of Ship's Carpenter and in 1881 was living with her great nephew Joshua Bell at 110 Church St, Birkenhead, Cheshire, England.

3.  JANE MERRY, b. 13 March 1785, Kirk German, Isle of Man, England was never married and had two illegitimate children:

THOMAS MERRY b. 5 July 1811 Maryport, Cumberland, England by Daniel McKean and JANE MERRY b. 1 December 1805 Maryport, Cumberland, England by Robinson Penny.

Thomas Merry married Mary Coulthard 25 October 1832, Crosscanonby, Cumberland, England.

Marriages Parish of Crosscannonby
25th October 1832
Thomas Merry and Mary Coulthard both of this parish
In the presence of Daniel Coulthard and Agnes Shaw

The couple had four children Jane 1833, Agnes 1835, Richard 1838 and John 1847 only two survived Jane and Richard.

Thomas Merry is on the 1841 census as a Shipwright and married to Mary both aged 30 they had two children Jane aged 5, probably named after Thomas' sister Jane and Richard aged 3, after Mary's father Richard and on "A List of the Cumberland Shipping, corrected to
1840, by William Sawyers, Comptroller of Her Majesty's Customs at the Port
of Whitehaven'. Thomas is given and the master of the brig Lady Anne, the owner was William Bowman.

In 1851 the family were living in King St, Maryport then Thomas was 39 and a ships carpenter his wife Mary was 43 and by then Jane was 17 and son Richard was 13 both scholars.

By 1861 I could find no trace of the rest of the family but did find Thomas Merry on board the HMS Indefatigable as Master.  Ships were converted into floating schools for training boys. The training ship Indefatigable was for poor and orphaned boys whose fathers were seamen.  They helped the poorer boys, who otherwise may have never gained any skills to gain the skills necessary for a life at sea.

In 1871 Mary was on her own on the census night, still wife of a master mariner by this time her daughter Jane was living with her married to Charles Watson a mariner who was probably at sea and was not at home that night.  Jane and Charles Watson had two children Thomas b.1861 and Charles Watson b. 1864 who were both with there mother and grandmother on the night.

By 1881 the family were living at 117 Nelson St, Maryport.  Mary is 74 and still married to Thomas Merry.  Jane Watson her daughter is now a widow and only Tom Watson her son, and Mary's grandson age 20 is living with them and noted as a mariner.

Richard Merry Son of Thomas and Mary never married and died September 1874 aged 37.

Thomas Merry died in September 1881 and Mary his wife in June of 1886.

JANE MERRY b. 1 December 1805 Maryport, Cumberland daughter of Jane Merry and Penny Robinson and sister of Thomas Merry married John Drummond a mariner 27 March 1830 at Crosscanonby, Cumberland, England.

27th March 1830 Crosscanonby Parish Registers
Drummond John his mark bachelor and Mariner both of this parish by licence
Merry Jane her mark spinster
Witnesses: Thomas Merry and Sarah Drummond.

By 1841 the family were residing at King Street in Maryport, John Drummond was then 35 Jane was 30 and they had John aged 10 (born 1831), Sarah aged 8 (born 1832), Robert aged 5 (born 1834, Jane aged 3 (born 1836) and baby Thomas aged 3 months (born 1841).

In 1851 the family was in Nelson Street, Maryport.  John was not on the census preumably at sea, Jane is now 45 and given as Mariners wife.  Their daughter Sarah is now 18, Tom is now a scholar and aged 10 and they have now added Anne Jane 8 (born 1842) Joseph 4 (born 1847) to the family.  Elizabeth a little girl was born in 1844 but was not on the census so may not have survived.

By 1861 Jane Drummond was a widow and back living with her mother Jane Merry and her aunt Sarah Merry at 31 Nelson St, Maryport.  Jane Drummond was an assistant to her mother Jane and aunt Sarah in the bakers shop.  Her daughter Ann Jane Drummond was umarried and a nurse and in the meantime her daughter Sarah Drummond had married and had a daughter of her own called Margaret.  Tom Drummond was aged 20 not married and now a sailor.

In 1871 Jane was living at 1 Bells Court, Nelson Street, Maryport
was aged 65 and living alone.  Jane died in September 1877 aged 72.  John her husband is registered as dying in June 1853, aged 50.

SARAH DRUMMOND (above) b. 16 December 1832 Maryport, Cumberland married Francis Mulholland in December 1859.  The couple had 4 children, Margaret 1861, John D 1864, Mary L 1866 and Tom D 1869.

In 1861 Sarah Mulholland aged 28 was staying with her mother Jane Drummond at 31 Nelson St, Maryport and had daughter Margaret aged 2 Months she was still married to Francis Mulholland a mariner.

In 1871 Sarah Mulholland is aged 38 a master mariners wife and is living at 3 Bells Place, Nelson St, Maryport not far from her mother Jane.  Sarah has 3 children with her John D aged 7, Mary L aged 5 and born in Liverpool, also the baby of the family Tom D who was also born in Liverpool, Lancashire.

Strangely in 1881 there is no sign of Sarah Mulholland the two children Mary Elizabeth aged 14 and Thomas Drummond aged 12 are on their own and Mary is given as daughter (head) and living at 14 Bells Place, Maryport.

Generation No. 2


2. MARGARET MERRY  was born 27 February 1780 in Maryport, Cumberland, England. She married EDWARD SOUTHWELL 15 March 1801 in Crosscanonby, Cumberland birth unknown.  Edward Southwell was a mariner, noted in Maryport shipping records and he was also a witness at Mary Merry and Robert Munican's wedding.

Maryport Shipping Records
Vessel                 Type                Where Built        Master                    Owner
Mary & Frances   Schooner           Maryport             Edward Southwell   Robert Bell

{Marriages March 15th 1801
Edward Southwell bachelor and mariner
Margaret Merry spinster
In the presence of Joseph Collins and Catherine Biglands}


i. THOMAS SOUTHWELL, b. 29 December 1801, Maryport, Cumberland, England [weaver]; m. MARY WHARTON.

{Marriage in the Parish of Crosscannonby
Thomas Southwell  bachelor and weaver
Mary Wharton spinster
In the presence of John Murphy and Eleanor Southwell}

ii. MARY SOUTHWELL, b. 9 September 1804, Maryport, Cumberland, England.

iii. EDWARD SOUTHWELL, b. 19 August 1808, Maryport, Cumberland, England; m. MARY ANN HUDDART, 4 February 1835, Maryport, Cumberland, England.; b. 1 May 1810, Dearham, Cumberland.

{Edward Southwell,  Bachelor and shipright,  both of this parish
Mary Ann Huddart, spinster,
In the presence of William Wilson and Jane Merry}

iv. ELEANOR SOUTHWELL, b. 23 October 1811, Maryport, Cumberland, England.

v. JOHN SOUTHWELL, b. 28 December 1814, Maryport, Cumberland; d. 10 September 1816, Maryport, Cumberland.

vi. JOHN SOUTHWELL, b. 28 April 1819, Maryport, Cumberland, England.

vii. MARGARET SOUTHWELL, b. 8 April 1817, Maryport, Cumberland, England.

viii. JANE SOUTHWELL, b. 3 May 1822, Maryport, Cumberland, England; m. JOHN BELL, Abt. 1840, Maryport, Cumberland, England; b. 6 May 1820, Maryport, Cumberland, England.

 1841 Census Maryport
Nelson Lane
John Bell 20 Shipwright
Jane 19

John and Jane's had seven children one a daughter Mary Bell born 12 September 1848 Maryport married Charles Molland 27 June 1869.  Charles was one of three children born to James William Molland a master blacksmith and a ship smith and Rebecca Gallaway. 

Hannah Molland b. 21 July 1838 was Charles younger sister and the only girl in the family of three children they also had a brother John Molland b. 12 April 1840 married Sarah Edwards and had one daughter Rebecca Molland.  

John Molland was by all acounts a "jack of all trades" and could make and assemble a gun or a sailing vessel, including manning the vessel with guns.  He was a fine ship's carpenter.  He was drowned while at work the 28th day of November in 1881.  He was 41 years old.

Hannah went on to emigrated to the USA.  Read the fascinating story of Hannah Molland and her husband Joseph Henry Byington two of the Mormon pioneers, who crossed the plains to Salt Lake City.

4. ANNE MERRY was born 31 January 1790 in Maryport, and died 29 October 1871 in Maryport, Cumberland. She married EZEKIAL WALKER 6 July 1815 in Annan, Scotland, son of HENRY WALKER and RUTH BARWISE. He was born 1795 in St.Bees, Cumberland, and died 1856 in Maryport, Cumberland.

Children of ANNE MERRY and EZEKIAL WALKER are:

i. RUTH WALKER, b. 1816, Maryport, Cumberland, England.

ii. HENRY WALKER, b. 1821, Whitehaven.

iii. EZEKIAL WALKER, b. 1827, Marown, Isle of Man; d. 14 May 1885, Maryport, Cumberland; m. AGNES RANKEN, 1862, Scotland?; b. 1833, Tranent, East Lothian, Scotland; d. 18 June 1890, Maryport, Cumberland.

iv. JOHN WALKER, b. 1830, Marown, Isle of Man.

5. MARY  MERRY was born 16 February 1792 in Maryport, Cumberland. Mary was baptised at Maryport, 16th February 1792 - parents were noted to be Thomas Merry and Anne and Thomas was noted to be a mariner.  She married ROBERT MUNICAN (MONAGHAN) 15 May 1815 in crosscanonby, Cumberland.

Mary and Robert Munican where married in 1815 at Crosscanonby, Cumberland. Anne Merry her sister and Edward Southwell were witnesses. Robert was noted as a mariner.

{Marriage Crosscannonby
Minnican Robert bachelor and mariner
Mary Merry spinster
In the presence of Anne Merry and Edward Southwell}


i. ELIZABETH MUNICAN, b. 7 December 1815, Maryport, Cumberland, England; m. HENRY JOHNSTONE, 27 July 1835, Crosscannoby, Cumberland, England.