Boyce Family History
Ditcheat, a parish in the hundred of Whitstone, in the county of Somerset, 4½ miles S. of Shepton-Mallet, and 2½ North West of Castle Cary station. It is situated on the river Brue, and contains, Lottisham, Alhampton, and Wraxall. A silk-mill employed more than 50 people. The old Roman Fosse Way skirts the parish on the North West. The church, dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene, is in the early English style of architecture, and is built of blue lias stone. It consists of nave, transept, aisles, porch, and tower with six bells and a clock. There is a petrifying spring near this place.
John Boyce was born in 1763 in Ditcheat, Somerset. At this time I don't know the names of his parents, need to go to Somerset Records Office to search the parish records for St Mary Magdalene, Ditcheat. He married Elizabeth Hoare (born in 1766 in Ditcheat) on the 20th June 1784. Elizabeth had already given birth to their first child Margaret Hoare Boyce b. 12th May 1784 before they were married. They then went on to have Jane (16th May 1786), William (25th January 1789), James (16th April 1791), Betty (18th December 1796) and Thomas (22nd March 1799). All the children were born in Ditcheat.
James married Hannah Symes (who was born circa 1796 in Priddy, Somerset) on the 15th March 1812 at St Cuthbert's Church, Wells. James occupation is shown on the census returns for 1841, 1851 and 1861 as a Gardeners Labourer and he was still working in 1861 aged 73. Interestingly enough Hannah is also working in 1861 as a shopkeeper. They were living at St Cuthbert Street, St Cuthbert in Wells, Somerset. Hannah died in 1868. In 1871 James is shown as living at 49 Chamberlain Street, St Cuthbert Wells as an Inmate of Bubsworths Almshouse Age 83 but died later the same year.
I have only been able to find two children for James and Hannah so far. The first one is Isaac b. circa 1826 and Alfred b. circa 1827. In the 1841 Census only Isaac is shown, his occupation being Boot Closer Age 15 and by 1851 he had moved to London was living as a Lodger at 32 Luckworth Street, St Giles Cripplegate, St Bartholomew, London occupation Boot Maker. What made Isaac move all the way to London after 1841. This would have been an epic journey taking several days. Was there some kind of family falling out, or did Isaac move to London to find make his fortune as there was not enough work for a Boot Maker in Somerset. There was probably not the demand for boots in Somerset as most people would have been quite poor and made their boots last as long as possible. At this time Alfred was living at New Street, St Cuthbert, Wells and is shown as a Medical Student age 14.