Yet to be summarised.
Parents and family
The only evidence for John's parents is his Christening which gives
them as John KIRBY and Judith. As John had the same name as his father,
it is reasonable to assume that his parents were likely to have been
married fairly soon before he was born and in a similar location.
Marriages of a John KIRBY and a Judith are rare, the marriage of John
and Judith KENNETT in Rochford, Essex on 1 Oct 1789 being the
only candidate whilst also in the right place and about the right date.
Given John jnr's christening date the timing of the
marriage appears to have been necessitated by Judith's pregnancy
(or only formalised following it, which was sometimes the
On the 1851 Census John KIRBY gave his age as 61 and his place of birth as Rochford, Essex.
A John KIRBY was christened at St
Andrew's Church, Rochford on 9 May 1790 by John and
Childhood and education
His parents were not well off, for in 1805 they underwent a
EmploymentHis employment prior to marriage is unknown.
Marriage to Elizabeth Lee
On 12 Dec 1811 he married Elizabeth LEE in North
Benfleet, Essex, and moved to that
time he was a labourer. Elizabeth appears to have born him three children.
On 13 Sep 1812 his daughter Martha
(1812-1812) was born, she was christened on 15 Sep 1812 (from a fellow
researcher who gave no location).
On 11 Nov1814 his daughter Elizabeth was born (from a fellow researcher
who gave no location).
At some point before 1815 his son John KIRBY
was born at North Benfleet, Essex (from Census data). He was Christened at North Benfleet on 29 Oct 1814.
Marriage to Sarah Wolf
On 1 Dec 1816 John married again, this time to Sarah WOLF (born
in Little Wakering). They married in South
a village some distance further west.
Between 1822 & 1823 there are a few more glimpses of the
John's mother was buried in Downham and a fellow researcher has suggested two children were christened there, William, born
1823 in Downham, and Sarah, born 1824. However I currently have no supporting
evidence for this.
The location of his burial is currently the only
firm evidence that the Shoebury John KIRBY had strong ties with North
Benfleet, Essex. However, John's son John, married Sarah SULLINGS.
About 1826 his daughter Elizabeth KIRBY was born in South
Shoebury, Essex, she later married William WALL. William
reported John KIRBY's death (see below).
About 1827 his son James KIRBY was born in South
The 1841 census shows John and his wife Sarah at Well House in
At which time the family unit comprised:
as elsewhere, the 1841 Census does not show family relationships and
rounds ages over 20 to a multiple of five years. In the
next premesis listed there is a William WALL. He appears single and is
aged either 10 or 18 (the latter seems probable as he is occupied as an
Ag Lab). On the previous page, listed under Cook's Farm, South Shoebury
there is a James KIRBY, aged 40, ag lab and born in county who is on
- John KIRBY, 50, ag lab, born in county
- Sarah KIRBY, 50, , born in county
- James KIRBY, 14, ag lab, born in county
On 17 Nov 1843 his daughter Elizabeth married William WALL. At that
time she gave her father's occupation as Labourer.
Directory of 1848 states that South Shoebury was only occupied
by '164 souls' and also that 'The poor parishioners have an old
building called Well House, with a garden, let for £6.18s., but
the donor is unknown.'
On the 1851 Census he was still at Well House
Later they moved to the vacinity of Shore House, South Shoebury, Essex, possibly the house itself (1861 census).
- John KIRBY, Head family,Mar[ried], 61, Ag Laborer. Essex, Rochford
- Sarah KIRBY, Wife, Mar, 61, , Essex, Little Wakering
- James KIRBY, Son, U[nmarried], 23, Ag Laborer, Essex, Sth Shoebury
- Sam'l RIGHT, Lodger, Widower, 46, Ag Laborer, Essex, Stifford
On the 1871 Census John is still listed at Shore House, South Shoebury, Essex.
- John KIRBY, Head, Mar[ried], 72, Ag Lab, Essex, Rochford
- Sarah KIRBY, Wife, Mar[ried], 72, , Essex, Little Wakering
It was quite an achievement to still be an agricultural labourer at the age of 81!
- John KIRBY, Head, Wdr, 81, Ag Lab, Essex, Rochford
is still there although it has been demolished and re-built
at least twice since John & Sarah's time. At one point it was a
garage, and in its current guise it is a comfortably appointed
The management inform me that all that they know to date from the original establishment are the cellars and the tunnel by which
the beer was brought in from barges. However, some of the central walls
(the bits holding up the greenish brown roof) may still be original (to
judge from a picture of about 1900-1910 in
the catalogue of Footsteps
Last Will and Testament
John died on 24 August 1877 in Shoebury. The death was registered in
registered in the Shoeburyness sub district of Great Wakering, Essex.
The details on the registration are: Age 87, name John KIRBY,
Shoeburyness [=South Shoebury]. Occupation Farm Labourer.
Cause of death: Old age, Natural decay, certified by E Milburn M. R. C.
S. Ed. Reported by William WALL, Son in Law, Jman Lab North
Shoeburyness, who made his mark.
John KIRBY was buried on 4th September
1877 in North Benfleet, Essex.
Descendants and notable relations
Any transcripts and images on this page are Copyright R I Kirby 2008
unless stated otherwise.