Family History Notebook

Susannah Swindle

Daughter of Christopher Swindle and Jane Dover, baptised on the 9th of March 1838 in Crosthwaite (Keswick), Cumberland

Married Robert Holmes 2 on the 16th of December 1860 in Crosthwaite, Cumberland (bmd)


Ann Jane, born 1860
Esther, born 1862
Joseph William, born 1864
Sarah Elizabeth,  born 1868

Robert and Susannah are living in Cockermouth at the time of the 1881 census. Susannah's niece, Ann Jane Wilson, is also living with them (an orphan?)


1    Four other children - John 1869, Christopher 1871, Robert Vickers 1874, Margaret Ann 1878 - are all listed in the 1881 census as Robert Holmes children, but all with the surname Cooper. For the reason see #b below.

2    atDNA match


a)    Robert Holmes, son of John and Ann Holmes, baptised 22nd September 1839 at All Saints, Cockermouth (IGI on-line). Robert marriage entry gives his age as 21, his father John. The 1881 census gives his birthplace as Cockermouth.

b)    e-mail from David Cooper Holmes 20/7/16

Robert & Susannah are my G G Grandparents, so if you are related to Susannah, I guess we share DNA.
I started researching family history 7 years ago when I began to wonder where my double barrelled name came from. I had asked my father several times but never had a satisfactory explanation.

I found the answer by going back to the marriage of John Holmes & Martha Fletcher at Bridekirk in 1784.
John & Martha's second daughter  Esther b1785 had an illegitimate son John Holmes b1809. Two years after John was born, Esther married John Cooper b1781. John then assumed Cooper as a middle name
He went on to Marry Ann Vickers b1809 in 1831. John was a waller/builder, but also a beer house keeper living in "The Harp" on St Helens Street. He was also a keen bell ringer along with his step father and future brother in law at All Saints church. John & Ann had 10 children all baptised Holmes. Cooper seems to have been used as a middle name by them all at some time or other but fairly erratically. Some of the children including Robert changed between Cooper & Holmes on different census. 1841 Robert Holmes, 1851 Robert Cooper, 1861 Robert Cooper, 1871 Robert Holmes, 1881 Robert Holmes, 1891 Robert Holmes, 1901 Robert Holmes, 1911 Robert Holmes.
Throughout all this he was generally known as Bob Cooper. As far as I know all Roberts siblings were baptised, married and buried Holmes but some had spent their whole life being known as Cooper and in some cases even having just Cooper on their headstones. 
This strange mixup of surname goes right down all branches of the tree until some drop Cooper completely, some drop Holmes completely and with my line and another in Lancashire a hyphen joined the 2 together
About as clear as mud, but that's the story
Susannah Swindle/Holmes died young in 1891 after suffering from consumption for a length of time. During her illness she had a live in nurse Jane Millican who Robert went on to marry in 1897
Robert was also a waller eventually becoming a master mason and he like his father was also a publican. The 1881 census shows him in the Cordwainers Arms on St Helens Street, by 1911 he was in the Bowling Green Hotel also on St Helens street. He died in 1919 from gangrene of the foot
If you decide to update your site, please feel free to use any of this which you feel would be of use to you
Kind regardsDavid Holmes, err Davy Cooper hmmmm