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1 Jun 2011

the Wells Tavern meeting

the public house in Well Walk, Hampstead was in the family in the 1881 census and a few years either side of this. If the following headline from the Hampstead Voice spells truth then that well known Irishman President O'Bama has also popped in for a recent schnifter. I can't imagine why. It looks pretty fine at night in winter as you approach it from the west, but the mahogany veneer interior is tinny and oppressive. Despite terrible reviews on findmybeer.com, we had friendly if rather scared-looking waiting staff last night.
Amid our tasty pub grub lay the papers of a hundred years. Death dates were recorded back to dear Mary Tayler in 1835. We had a choice of two baptisms for Mary, 1775 at Mere Wiltshire or 1778 at Leigh in Worcestershire. I had always burnt a candle for the Mere child. She was being carried by her mother at the time of her grandmother's murder in Ansford, June 1775, which is so significant I'd like our Mary to have had that honour. The Leigh baptism is quite likely unrelated though could well be a second baptism for the same child. The evidence was Mary's death listed in Lambeth as 1835 age 59.
Right at the end of the evening cousin Ann remembered something else, as a child she'd had a penpal in Bronte Sydney who was a cousin. Ann even remembered the name. Sure enough Polly Bailey's second son Charles did sail for Sydney in 1914. A profitable evening.

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