Whilst researching my own family tree during lockdown I stumbled on the Jeffreys family who lived at The Weston Cross in the 1900’s. Being nosey like I am I decided to dig a little further and it’s a fascinating story. Grab a cup of tea because this is quite a story.........
The Jeffreys Family - A history of The Weston Cross
The Jeffreys family came from Little Dewchurch and took up residence at the Weston Cross in the beginning of 1881 and held a housewarming supper on the 4th January 1881. Im unsure if it was a well attended event as it was advertised as “supper on the table at 7.30pm, and tickets were 2s 6p. I think they must of been entrepreneurs of their day as in the 1881 census both Mr and Mrs Jeffreys were living at two seperate business addresses - either that or they didn’t much like each other! But then again perhaps they had the secret to a happy marriage and they ended up married for over 46 years and had 6 children.
The Weston Cross 1881 census
Mr Edward Jeffreys (head) age 56.married Innkeeper and Blacksmith
Catherine Jeffreys (daughter) age 24 Single
Frederick Jeffreys (son) age 9 scholar
Elizabeth Longford (lodge) age 66
Post Office and Smithies Shop 1881 Census
Elizabeth Jeffreys (wife) age 43 married Post Mistress
Adelaide Jeffreys (daughter) age 14 Assistant post office
Herbert Jeffreys (son) 6
Robert Jeffreys (son) 4
Amos Weale (journey man) 21 Blacksmith
Henry Blewitt (apprentice) 15 apprentice blacksmith
William and Elizabeth Watkins (lodgers) agricultural labourer
The Jeffreys also had another daughter aged 23 who was working as a young lady’s maid in Staunton Park, Staunton on Arrow
They certainly had large households which included servants. From 1881 they are only listed at The Weston Cross so I assume they decided it was wasn‘t working out running two businesses.
In 1889 their daughter Catherine married Amos (a blacksmith who actually was living with them as an employee in 1881) in the parish church at Weston under Penyard. So Catherine became Catherine Weale. In 1901 Catherine and Amos were living in Gloucester Road, Ross on Wye and from there they moved to Much Birch where they raised 3 children.
The Jeffreys continued at the pub through to the 1900’s and when the 1901 census took place sadly Mr Jeffreys was a patient at The Ear and Eye hospital Hereford. Elizabeth was still at the pub and assisted by Adelaide who was listed as an assistant housekeeper at the pub. Both Herbert and Robert were single and living at home working as blacksmiths. Unfortunately Mr Jeffreys didn’t recover well and he passed away at the pub in around 1905
Adelaide took over the license of the pub around 1905 and both she and Elizabeth continued on running the business. Although Adelaide held the licence Elizabeth was always the “landlady”. Both Elizabeth and Adelaide were extremely popular custodians of the pub and they ran a very successful business,, they hosted meetings and dinners for Weston under Penyard cricket clubs, the mutual benefit society, and various other clubs and societies. Mrs Jeffreys went on to out live two of her sons Herbert and Robert who passed away in 1913 and 1918.
Elizabeth Jeffreys passed away in July 1918. Adalaide was still unmarried at this point but surprisingly she married William Andrews on the 20th November at the age of 51. The two of them very happily continued to reside at The Weston Cross until Adelaide passed away in April 1932 at the age of 66. The Jeffreys had been in residence for a grand total of 51 years,....... what an achievement to be celebrated.
Weston under Penyard Crossroads 1900
Mrs Jeffreys can be seen in this photograph in the doorway 1890
Weston under Penyard school around 1880. Some of the Jeffreys children may well be in this picture as they attended the local school.