Thursday, 25 October 2012

Chynoweths in Mexico

This week I've gone off on a tangent but it has taken me to Mexico and back so it has been interesting!

While hunting Chynoweths I spotted one Maria Chynoweth born in Mexico about 1830. This sparked my interest and I resolved to find out more.

In 1841 census she is living in Helston with William and Mary Allen and their children at the New Inn. I suspect they are relations.

In 1850 she marries Thomas Priske of the Railway Inn in Penzance and in 1851 census they are living in Penzance where he is an innkeeper.

By 1861 she is a widow with 2 children and is an innkeeper at the Red Lion back in Helston.

In 1871 she is the manageress of the Metropol Tavern in London which is owned by her older brother William Chynoweth.

In 1881  aged 50 she is described as a bargirl back in Helston at the New Inn owned by cousin Lavinia Lory. This is where she was in 1841 and Lavinia turns out to be daughter of William Allen and Mary Harris born 1841 after the 1841 census. More of Lavinia in a future post.

Now to work out who her parents are.  Her  mother must be either an Allen or a Harris. Being born in Mexico there is no birth record.
But her brother William was born in Cornwall about 1824.
Using Cornish Parish Records online I find  William Chenoweth born 1824 in Helston to John Chenoweth carpenter and Grace (no maiden surname) but with Helston it sounds good.
I look for other children of John and Grace and find several with the middle name Harris. I think she is Grace Harris! The oldest is Grace Harris Chenoweth born 1819. I look for a marriage prior to 1819 and find it in December 1818.  She is from Helston but he is from Breage. And two witnesses are named Mark Shephard and John Chynoweth. I file this info away in my head!

Now to explore the Mexico connection.  Some  judicious googling leads me to find out he worked at the Real del Monte silver mines in Mexico and died there is 1837. His wife and 5 children come back to Helston. Grace died in 1839 in Helston. You can see the family tree here

 Their daughter Grace (b 1819)  married and stayed in Mexico. Son William (b 1824) went back as a civil engineer before becoming a pub landlord in London.

I love that you can get Cornish pasties in  Real del Monte (now called Mineral del Monte  twinned with Redruth.)

The Cornish in Latin America project

BBC story from 2008

Maria's family tree

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