Joseph BunnView full burial details
in the cemetery
JOSEPH BUNN; 1817-1850
Joseph was born in Berkhamsted on 13th June 1817 and baptised on 27th July that year. His parents were John and Sarah Bunn. John was a timber carrier and Sarah a straw plaiter. Joseph had an older brother, James, who was born in 1815. It appears that he also had a twin, brother, William, and whilst we do not have William’s exact date of birth, we do know William was born in 1817. William was baptised a week before Joseph on 20th July 1817. William died shortly afterwards and was buried on 3rd August 1817 in St. Peter’s churchyard.
More siblings followed. Sarah gave birth to another son in 1819, who was also named William. Thomas followed in late 1826 and was baptised on 31st December that year. Like William he too died soon after he was born and was buried at St Peter’s on 20th January 1827. Elizabeth, the couple’s first daughter, was born in 1828, Eliza in 1830, Emma in 1832 and finally the youngest, Edith, was born in 1836.
We know from the 1841 census that the Bunn family was living in Berkhamsted’s High Street, but Joseph, who would then have been 24 years of age, was not with the family. He may have been absent on the date of the census, or perhaps more likely, given his age, he had moved out of the family home. Frustratingly he can’t be found in the 1841 census which would give us his occupation, but his death certificate from nine years later in 1850 tells us he was a labourer.
We do know that Joseph was living in Berkhamsted in 1838, as we have a certificate recording his conviction on 3rd April 1838 before a Justice of the Peace sitting at Berkhamsted and Joseph is noted as being of the Parish of Berkhampstead St Peter. His offence was poaching; he had trespassed on land in Northchurch in search of game. He was ordered to pay a fine of 10 shillings and an additional 19 shillings in costs. He may have only been a labourer, but the certificate shows that he had the means to pay the fine and costs immediately. Of the 10 shillings fine, five shillings was paid to the Overseer of the Poor, no doubt to help meet the costs of Poor Relief in the parish.
We also know that Joseph was in Berkhamsted in 1842, as in that year he married Charlotte Potter and the marriage was registered in the town. The 1851 census reveals that Charlotte, like many other poor women in the area, including Joseph’s mother Sarah, was a straw plaiter.
Joseph and Charlotte did not enjoy many years of matrimony together as Joseph died eight years later in Berkhamsted on 31st May 1850, just short of his 33rd birthday. A little over a year later the widowed Charlotte remarried.
Joseph’s death certificate tells us that he died of “Morbus Bryghtis” – inflammation of the kidneys. Joseph was laid to rest in Rectory Lane cemetery in the same plot in which his father, Joseph, had been buried three years earlier.