Thomas P & E Potter page 3








The Oylers, from Kent to London 1800 and 1900s

Thomas Pettit Oyler 1791 (eldest son of Samuel and Elizabeth Oyler) my great x3 grandfather  was christened 17th Dec 1791 in Winchelsea, Sussex. Although his father Samuel was a farmer and several of his brothers were also farmers Thomas was apprenticed to a William Redman, a linen draper in Hawkhurst in 1807 at the age of 16.

Thomas was married on 29th Nov. 1817 to Elizabeth Potter of Cranbrook (She was born 1793, died 1840 in Shoreditch, London). Daughter of Samuel and Mary Ann Potter, Cranbrook.  Thos Oyler of Hawkhurst yeo bach (25) & Eliz Potter of Cranbrook sp (24), at C. 29 Nov 1817”.  (IGI) Ref: (Kent, Surrey, London: - Canterbury Marriage Licences, 1810-1837   1817  Surrey.)

Thomas moved to Newington on the outskirts of London some time before 1827 where his daughter Frances Matilda was born. Thomas and Elizabeth (Potter) Oyler had five daughters and one son.


  • Caroline Oyler – birth at Sandhurst 12th July 1818. Died 1822. Buried in Cranbrook, Kent
  • Potter Samuel Oyler - Born on 2nd Feb 1821. Baptized in the church of St Nicholas 1822 in Sandhurst, Kent. On his marriage certificate to Mary Ann Hales in 1841 his father is listed as a draper. Here is the origin of the name Potter used as first name in the generations that followed.
  • Mary Oyler - Born 4th Oct 1822, Sandhurst, Kent.
  • Frances Matilda Oyler born 1828 in St. Mary, Newington, Surrey, England. She Married William Doeg Jackson in 1847. He was the son of William Jackson and Rebecca Doeg. He was born 1823/1824 in St. Giles, Cripplegate, London, England. (Her grandmother, Elizabeth Oyler was living in St. Mary, Newington, Surrey in 1841. Could this be why Frances was in the same town?)

In the 1841 Census both Elizabeth and Frances Matilda Oyler are living in Romney Place with their aunt and uncle James and Frances Richardson. Her mother died in 1840 and her her father's death date is unknown.

In 1851 Frances Matilda (Oyler) Jackson is living in Whitechapel.

1861 she is living in the Strand (Central London),

1866 her son Robert Jackson is born.

1871 she lives in Upper Holloway.

1881 she is back in Islington. William Jackson dies in 1882.

1891 she is still in Islington, living with her son Robert Jackson, his wife Fanny and their child Matilda.

1901 census, she was living in Lewisham at 54 Bovill Road and her son Robert was in the adjoining road at 6 Ebsworth Road. Frances was ‘living on her own means’.

March 1911, Frances Jackson dies in Croydon at the age of 83 years of a Cerebral Haemorrhage.

  • Elizabeth Oyler born 1829 in Newington, married John Hobson in 1848.
            In 1851 Elizabeth and John Hobson are living in Spitalfields where John is a "Car Man" (modern day equivalent: delivery man).
            In 1861 they are living at 10 Fashion Sq in Spitalfields, John (a fruit salesman) with their children
    • John William Hobson 9,
    • Lousia Hobson 5,
    • Potter Hobson aged 2, died of Whooping Cough in 1862
    • Fanny Hobson, 1 month.
Also living with them is Elizabeth’s nephew James Senior Richardson (eldest son of John Richardson and Mary Potter). 

By 1866 Elizabeth (Oyler) Hobson is widowed and had married Thomas Charles Freeman (a draper) 14th May 1866, in Hoxton, Middlesex. Her sister, Frances Matilda Jackson was a witness. Her father was listed as Thomas Pettit Oyler, draper. By 1871 Elizabeth and T.C Freeman are living Hackney where Thomas is a draper. Thomas and Elizabeth had two sons:
    • Charles Freeman born 1872
    • Frederick Freeman born 1873

1891 Elizabeth (Oyler/Hobson) Freeman is living with her two youngest children: Charles and Frederick, in Woolwich. Elizabeth (65) is working as a "sick nurse"; Charles (19) is a "plumber's labourer" and Frederick (18) is a porter.

1901 Elizabeth is living in Plumstead with her grandson Alfred Evans
  • Harriet Oyler baptized 10 Aug 1834 St. Boltophe, Bishopsgate, died 1838 in Shoreditch. On her baptismal certificate her father Thomas was listed as a draper, Half Moon St., St. Boltoph Without, Bishopsgate, London. However, on her death certificate her father Thomas was listed as a labourer of Crown Court, Long Alley, Shoreditch.
  • Matilda (illegitimate child by Sarah Hawkins) April 4th 1822. 

    Thomas Pettit Oyler was also the father of a bastard child Matilda by Sarah Hawkins April 4th 1822 (This was the same year that Thomas Pettit Oyler's daughter Mary was born). He had to pay Sarah Hawkins 40 guineas but it was agreed that should the child die he would get monies back that wasn't used. He later finds out that the child did died at about 2 yrs and promptly wrote requesting his money be returned and that as the Solicitors had had the money for some period of time it would have accrued interest which he felt sufficient to cover their fees. Sarah Hawkins was evicted from Hawkhurst Workhouse in February 1822 to Sandhurst Workhouse.   Source: National Archives

There are records in the National Archives of several properties owned by Thomas Pettit Oyler:

On 29 July 1818 Little further mortgaged the property to John Richardson of Ewhurst miller for 100 and on 20 Jul 1819 Walter Pye, Philip Neve, Alexander Johnson, Thomas Evance and William Randall esqs received a commission of bankruptcy against him. After a creditors' meeting on 7 August James Pigram and John Argles of Maidstone grocers and James Hilder of Robertsbridge banker became assignees and auctioned Little's property on 2 September, when the property in recital was sold to Thomas Oyler of Sandhurst linendraper for 365. The conveyance was executed on 29 Apr 1820 and described the property as two cottages, a saddler's shop and hop ground occupied by Little, Samuel Reeve, Richard Robinson and Thomas Vennall; one cottage, the shop and a piece of land was not part of the copyhold but had been enclosed by Little from the waste and was conveyed to Oyler by Thomas [Pelham] Earl of Chichester at the expense of the bankrupt's estate on 26 Dec 1820. The conveyance was presented at a court held for Bodiam manor on 12 Feb 1821 and the property re-mortgaged to Sharpe for 160 (9/1-4)


In April 1820 “Thomas Oyler of Sandhurst, linendraper, purchased two cottages, a saddler's shop and hop ground for 365 (believed to be part of the Bodiam estate near Sandhurst, Kent). One cottage, the shop and a piece of land was not part of the original copyhold but was conveyed to Thomas Oyler by a court held for Bodiam manor, East Sussex on 12 Feb 1821",


 On 18 Dec 1823 Oyler, now of Maidstone gent, sold the combined freehold and copyhold estate to John Potter of Cranbrook farmer as trustee for his 12-year-old daughter Frances for 400; the mortgage to Sharpe was discharged (9/5, 6, 14). On John Potter's death intestate the legal estate descended to his daughters. On 24 Oct 1837 Frances Potter, then of Cranbrook, conveyed her equitable estate in the freehold to William Frederick Buckland grocer and Walter James Buckland of Biddenden grocer (who purchased in trust for Charlotte wife of William Buckland of Sandhurst) for 250 and covenanted to convey the legal estate as soon as it could be got in; the copyhold was surrendered by Frances (nee Potter) wife of James Richardson on 8 Sept 1843 (9/7-9)


There is a death record for Elizabeth Oyler, Parish of St Leonard, Shoreditch 22nd July 1840, aged 47.

In the 1841 census Frances Matilda Oyler and Elizabeth Oyler (described as nieces) are living with Frances and James Richardson and their one year old son James Senior Richardson. Frances (nee Potter) Richardson was the daughter of John Potter of Cranbrook (Brother of Elizabeth [Potter] Oyler) and Mary Williams who married in Cranbrook 03/11/1817. Frances and Elizabeth Oyler's mother, Elizabeth (Potter) Oyler, was recently deceased.

Also, in the 1841 census Elizabeth (Colville) Oyler (widow of Samuel) is living in St Mary Newington, aged 79 with John Chantler 60, Mary Chantler 58 (Elizabeth’s daughter by her first marriage to James Colville) and their children Samuel 21 and Elizabeth 23.

There was a death registered for a Thomas Oyler in The London Hospital, Whitechapel, Feb 1842 aged 50. However, the occupation was given as ‘labourer’, I cannot confirm that this is the same Thomas Oyler because in 1841, at the marriage of his son, he is listed as a draper. To date, no other death record that matches his occupation, has been found.

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