The Sanderson Family
LINKS: Lancashire BMD Lancs Birth/Marriages/Deaths updated frequently
Dunbar family Society - very useful site for Dunbar research
In general, the Sanderson family originates from the name Sander, a Danish medieval form of Alexander.  Sanderson is literally "son of Sander or son of Alexander".   Alexander and Sanderson are Septs of Clan
MacDonnell of Glengarry.
However, or Sanderson branch have been trace back to the mid 1600s in Leigh, Lancashire. No links with Scotland have been found as yet.
Most of the early part of the family tree has been pieced together from the help of Ron Harrison and  the Leigh parish records, although there are sketchy patches that still need to be confirmed.  I would also like to thank Sandie Hammer and Beryl for their help with certificates and other information on their branches.

The head of the family tree is
Gyles Sanderson of Astley.  He married Ellin Sale on 4th Feb1645 at Leigh.
Unfortunatley, the Leigh baptism registers, at his time, do not give the parents of the child being baptised.
There are a couple of Gyles Sandersons baptised in the early 1600s that could be the one we are looking for; the most likely is the one baptised in October 1625.
Gyles and Ellin had at least one son:

Gyles Sanderson bp 21.4.1626 Leigh
They could also be the parents of:

Gyles Sanderson bp 8.2.1646 Leigh
Henry Sanderson bp 4.11.1648 Leigh
and possibly a
John Sanderson mentioned in an Admon of Gyles Sanderson died 1696

In turn
, this Henry Sanderson and (possible wife Elin) had the following children:

James Sanderson bp 7.5.1676 Leigh
Susan Sanderson bp 16.2.1679 Leigh
John Sanderson of Bedford bp 6.5.1688 Leigh
                                                    m 31.1.1714 Leigh to
Martha Dunster (bp 6.1.1679? Leigh)
Henry Sanderson bp 24.8.1690 Leigh
                               ??m 14.5.1717 Leigh to
Mary Edwards??

John Sanderson of Bedford, born in 1688 married Martha Dunster (daughter of Giles Dunster)  on
31st January 1714 at Leigh.  They had at least two children:

Henry Sanderson bp 21.12.1715 Leigh
Alice Sanderson bp 30.8.1717 Leigh
and possibly
Giles Sanderson bp  ? Bedford? (no baptism mentoned in Leigh Registers)
                                                       m 16.4.1745 Leigh to
Rachel Derbyshire (bp 2.2.1725 Astley)

Giles Sanderson's birth and parentage is not certain, from here on, the descendants are known.
Giles Married
Rachel Derbyshire, daughter of James Derbyshire on 16th April, 1714 at Leigh.  They had the following children:

Martha Sanderson bp 19.5.1745 Astley
                                    d before 1754
Ann Sanderson bp 12.7.1747 Astley     )    
                                d before 1762              )  twins
Alice Sanderson bp 12.7.1747 Astley    )     
Margaret Sanderson bp 22.10.1749 Astley
John Sanderson bp 5.4.1752 Astley
Ellen Sanderson bp 21.7.1754 Astley
Martha Sanderson bp 21.7.1754 Astley
Giles Sanderson (weaver) bp 25.12.1759 Leigh
                                                m 8.2.1780 Leigh to
Betty Wainwright
                                                bur 17.5.1827 Leigh
Ann Sanderson bp 16.5.1762 Astley
Rachel Sanderson bp 14.4.1765 Astley

There is a Removal Order for
Giles and his wife Rachel filed in 1754 which removed them from Astley to Bedford.  As removal orders usually sent people back to their parish of origin, it appears likely that Giles was born in Bedford and that John of Bedford may well be his father.  This entry also reveals that their first child Martha, born in 1745, had died some time prior to 1754. [The order, held at Lancashire Record Office ref. QSP/1693/8 - date: 1754 3 Jan].

Giles Sanderson born in 1759 was a weaver. He married Betty Wainwright, on 8th February, 1780 at Leigh.  They had the following children:

Lydia Sanderson bp 4.6.1780 Astley
John Sanderson (cotton weaver) bp 8.12.1783 Leigh
                                                            m 3.1.1811 Leigh to
Betty Heys
James Sanderson (Farmer/Silk weaver) bp 9.4.1785 Astley Chapel
                                                                         m 10.6.1813 Man Cath to
Mary Clark
                                                                         d 18.12.1855, bur 22.12.1855 Astley
Rachel Sanderson bp 30.4.1791 Leigh
Sarah Sanderson bp 20.9.1794 Leigh
Jane Sanderson bp 20.5.1797 Leigh

Betty was buried on 10th October, 1826 and Gyles died in 1827 and was buried at Leigh on 17th May.

James Sanderson, born in 1785 was both a silk weaver and a farmer of Sales House Farm, Moss Side. He married Mary Clark at Manchester Cathedral on 10th June, 1813.
According to the 1841 census and the parish registers of Leigh, they had the following children:

John Sanderson bp 19.2.1814 Leigh, d before 1824?
Betty Sanderson bp 1815 (no date) Leigh
                                m ? to
William Rigby Hill
James Sanderson (silk weaver) b 1817 Astley
                                                          m 10.11.1839 St Marys, Eccles to
Pheobe Hayes
                                                          d 1872 Birkenhead
William Sanderson (Agr. labourer) bp 3.10.1818 Leigh
                                                              m 1850 Astley to
Mary Grundy/Greendy
Martha Sanderson b ? bp 18.3.1821 at Manchester Cathedral?
                                    m 1845 Leigh to
George Adamson
                                    d 1846 Leigh
Daniel Sanderson (farmer of Partington Lane Farm, Swinton)  bp 15.6.1822  Leigh
                                                                                                               m 1846 to
Elizabeth Parker
                                                                                                               bur 24.2.1900 Swinton
John Sanderson bp 11.9.1824 Leigh
Thomas Sanderson bp 25.2.1827 Astley
                                      bur 22.10.1828 Leigh
Thomas Sanderson (farmer) bp 4.10.1829 Astley

        In the 1841 census of Astley Green, Leigh, James was an agricultural labourer, but was recorded as a farmer of 11 acres by 1851.     The farm appears to have been  Sales House Farm on  Astley Moss (now known as Moss Side) and  in 1861, after James and Mary had died, 
Thomas Sanderson, their youngest son was farmer.  There were now 54 acres and Thomas employed two labourers.
James died in an accident.  There was a story kept in the family (told to me by Ron Harrison, fellow researcher and descendant of James - thanks Ron!) that he was returning from Bedford Mill in his horse and cart, when he tumbled at Town Lane.  He died at home six days later.  This story was proved to be true when James' death certificate was found.  The certificate clearly states 'died from injuries sustained as a result of a fall from a horse and cart'.
Leigh Chronical ran a short piece on the accident;

"Fatal Accident at Astley  - On the 12th Inst. as James Sanderson,
farmer of Astley, was returning from Bedford Mill, in a state of
intoxication, he fell out of his cart in Town Lane, Astley, and
fractured his skull near the temples.  He died of his injuries thus
received on Wednesday night."

           He had died six days later at his home in Moss Side, Astley, 18th December and was buried at Astley on 22nd December.  James left a will dated 14th December, 1855.  In the will he leaves his youngest son
Thomas the farming stock and management of the house and all others received a total of  �190.
Mary, his widow died the following  6th February, 1856, one day after making her will. Both James and Mary fail to mention a son John in their will and so we can assume, unless he fell out of favour with both parents, that he had died before them.  Mary was also buried at Astley on 9th February, 1856.

James Sanderson, born in 1817 was also a silk weaver.  He married Pheobe Hayes, daughter of Ann Heys at St. Mary's Church, Eccles on 10th November, 1839.    They had the follwoing children:

John Sanderson (labourer) b 20.7.1840,  bp 4.10.1840 Astley Green
                                                  m 12.2.1860 Garston to
Catherine Dunbar (b 1841) dau of George Dunbar
                                                  d 9.2.1880 Tranmere
William Sanderson b 1847 Astley
                                    d 1877 Little Hulton aged 30
Martha Sanderson b 1849 Astley
                                    m 1878 to
Thomas Kavanagh
Joseph Sanderson b 1850 Astley
                                     d 1869 Little Hulton aged 20
Mary Ann Sanderson b 1855 Astley
                                         m 1876 to
James Berry
James Sanderson (workshop labourer) b 1859 Astley

The family were living at Astley Green at the time of the 1861 census.  It is not known when or where
James died, but in 1881 Phoebe was widowed and living with her son James at 15  Manchester Road, Little Hulton, Cheshire (RG11/3818).
It appears that her husband
James had died in 1872 aged 55 at Birkenhead. 
According to the freeBMD but as yet unconfirmed,
Pheobe died in 1886 aged 69 at Farnworth, about 2 miles north of where she was living in 1881.

Not much is known about her other children. Sons
Joseph and William both died in 1869 and 1877 respectivley at Little Hulton.  Martha appears to have married Thomas Kavanagh, a coal miner in 1878. They were living at 18 Stevenson Street, Little Hulton in 1881.
Mary Ann appears to have married James Berry, a cotton sizer, in 1876 . They were living at 20 Booth Street, Farnworth in 1881.  Perhaps Pheobe had been living with them when she died? Mary and James had daughters Mary Ann born in 1877 and Martha born in 1879.

John Sanderson was born on 20th July, 1840 at Astley Green, Leigh.  He married Catherine Dunbar, daughter of George Dunbar and Mary Anne White, on 12th February, 1860 at Garston parish church.  John and Catherine had eight children:

George Sanderson (fireman/Engine Driver)  b 27.7.1861 Meddow Lane, Tranmere
                                                                                m 1887 Tranmere to
Elizabeth Melling
Alfred Sanderson (labourer) b 17.3.1864 Tranmere
                                                     m 1886 Birkenhead to
Annie Reeves
Joseph Sanderson (boiler maker) b 1866 Tranmere
Mary Ann Sanderson (soap packer) b 1870 Tranmere           
                                                                 m 31.8.1891 Tranmere to
John Taylor
Martha Ellen Sanderson b 1873 Tranmere
                                               m ? to
George Telford?
Pheobe Sanderson b 27.5.1875 Tranmere
                                      m 6.12.1896 Liverpool to
Joseph Henry Neil
John Sanderson (soap stamper) b 1877 Tranmere
Louisa Sanderson b 9.7.1879 Tranmere
                                    m 8.4.1907 to
Henry Arthur Yates

In 1871 John and Catherine were living at 14 Pleasant Street, St. Paul's, Tranmere.  John died on 9th February 1880 and in 1881 Catherine was in the Royal Infirmary, Brownlow Street, Liverpool (RG11/3627/45/6/1341868).  Her eldest son
George was in charge of the family at 40 Beaconsfield Road, Tranmere (RG11/3585/26/46/1341858).  Lousia his youngest sister was only 1 month old and it may be that Catherine was in hosptial due to complications with the birth.
However, by 1891 Catherine was back at home with her family at 12 Roslyn Street (late Liverpool Buildings), Birkenhead  (RG12/2891).  At the time of the 1901 census Catherine was 60 and living at 6 Roslyn Street, Birkenhead (RG13/3398/37) with her two youngest children John and Louisa.

George Sanderson born in 1861 was a dockyard fireman at the time of the 1881 census.  He was also in charge of his household of brothers and sisters including his 1 month old baby sister. Their mother Catherine was at this time a patient at the Royal Infirmary hostpital.
George married
Elizabeth Melling in 1887 and they had at least seven children: (info gratefully received by Sandie Hammer, grandaughter of son George born 1900)

Alice Sanderson b 31.10.1887 Birkenhead
Ellen (Nellie) Sanderson  b 27.6.1890 Birkenhead
                                               m 1911 Birkenhead to
John Henry Myers
Elizabeth Sanderson b 11.4.1893 Birkenhead
Louisa Sanderson b 26.2.1895 Birkenhead
                                    m 1917 Birkenhead to
Herbert Atkinson
Catherine Sanderson b 26.9.1897  Birkenhead
George Sanderson b 18.1.1900 Birkehead
                                     m 25.4.1929 to
Dorothy Alma Lucas  (parents of 16 children)

Joseph Sanderson b 28.7.1904 Birkenhead
                                     m 1936 Preston to
Cecilia Agatha Patricia Carter

Elsie Sanderson b 1904 Birkenhead
                                m 1926 Birkenhead to
Alfred Edward Nourse

George and his family were living at 12 Brassey Street, Birkenhead  (RG13/3393/124/9) in 1901.  George was a stationary Engine Driver at the dockyard.

Alfred Sanderson was a dockyard labourer. He married Annie Reeves and they had at least three children;

Agnes Sanderson b 1887
Annie Sanderson b 1890
Elsie Sanderson b 11.12.1904 Birkenhead
                                m 1926 Birkenhead to
Alfred Edward Nourse

Pheobe Sanderson, born in 1875 had left home by the time she was 15, working as a domestic servant at Stoke Upon Trent, Staffs  (RG12/2173/29/9) in 1891.  She married Joseph Henry Neil, son of John Neil and Ann Dixon on 6th December, 1896 at Liverpool. They had 14 children between 1897 and about 1914.
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See also the Sanderson Family Tree             back to top