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Ann Nancy Parish

Ann Nancy Parish

Female 1806 - 1909  (102 years)

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  • Name Ann Nancy Parish 
    Birth 11 May 1806  Cotton End, Bedfordshire, England, United Kingdom Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    • Date of birth in newspaper source is consistent with date of death on death register. Notes on FamilySearch record:
    Gender Female 
    Death 1 Feb 1909  Cardington, Bedfordshire, England, United Kingdom Find all individuals with events at this location  [3, 4
    Ann Nancy Parish obituary
    Ann Nancy Parish obituary
    Ann Nancy Parish death record
    Ann Nancy Parish death record
    Person ID I164  Mouchet-Roberts genealogy
    Last Modified 23 Jun 2017 

    Father James Parish 
    Mother Abigail Burrows,   b. Abt 1779, Haynes, Bedfordshire, England Find all individuals with events at this locationd. Yes, date unknown 
    Marriage 15 Jun 1800  Cardington, Bedfordshire, England, United Kingdom Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F2997  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family John Berrington,   b. Abt 1801   d. Yes, date unknown (Age ~ 82 years) 
    Marriage 24 Dec 1822  Cardington, Bedfordshire, England, United Kingdom Find all individuals with events at this location  [5
     1. Joseph Parish Berrington,   b. 11 May 1828, Cardington, Bedfordshire, England, United Kingdom Find all individuals with events at this locationd. 12 Jan 1916, Cleveland, Cuyahoga, Ohio, United States Find all individuals with events at this location (Age 87 years)
     2. Emma Berrington,   b. 1823   d. Yes, date unknown
     3. Mary Berrington,   b. 31 Aug 1825   d. 2 Nov 1908, Sharon Center, Cuyahoga, Ohio Find all individuals with events at this location (Age 83 years)
     4. James Berrington,   b. 4 Jul 1830   d. Yes, date unknown
     5. William Berrington,   b. Abt 1837   d. Yes, date unknown
     6. Charles Berrington,   b. 18 Jun 1839   d. 17 Nov 1910 (Age 71 years)
    Family ID F3126  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart
    Last Modified 26 Feb 2021 

  • Photos
    Ann Nancy Parish
    Ann Nancy Parish
    Ann Nancy Parish
    Ann Nancy Parish
    Ann Nancy Parish fourth from left. Other people unknown.

  • Notes 
    • The following was Emailed to me by Cindy Maloof, a descendent of Ann via her daughter Emma (another paper about Ann follows):

      Cindy's notes:
      This article is a little hard to follow because it jumps around talking about Ann and her daughter Emma. The names in parentheses were added by me to make it a little easier to follow. Ann was very well known for her lacemaking and it is said that Emma helped make the lace for Queen Victoria's wedding (based on a family letter).

      Article from Cindy:

      Mrs. Ann Berrington
      of Cardington, England
      who is in her 103rd year

      In the course of a number of interviews in the year 1908 with aged men and women living in and near Bedford, we first made the aquaintence of Mrs. Nancy Berrington (Ann Nancy Parish), who headed, the list, and still occupies that honourable position, as regards longevity. At that time there was some uncertainty as to her exact age, but there was no doubt that she had long been a nonagenarian.

      Our representative found this young lady skipping about the garden, cutting flowers and making up a nose-gay for a visitor. Mrs. Berrington was laughing and talking gaily and evidently thought nothing of getting over a fence to save herself a few steps in passing from the flower beds to another part of the ground. Could we have a little conversation? Certainly. Intruding? Not at all--she was accustomed to receive visitors. The first thing that struck one on entering Mrs. Berrington's neat and cleanly kept cottage was the inevitable pillow for making lace. For it was a fact that at that age and for several years since, Mrs. Berrington still pursued her favourite craft. On the pillow was a length of recently made lace of elegant design. To look into her clear, intelligent eyes one could not doubt that she could see to make lace, and her manner and appearance was twenty-five years younger than she looked. When she was about 70 her eyesight faculties seemed good all round, and she conversed in a lively manner that soon put the stranger at ease. There could be no doubt as to her advanced age, for other elderly persons in the parish remembered her as old Mrs. Berrington all their lives.

      Such was the substance of the introductory remarks in our description of a very interesting interview with Mrs. Berrington ten years ago. The old lady is still living in the same cottage, grown a little feebler perhaps, and suffering last week from a chill that she caught in the recent snap of cold weather, but on Sunday she was recovering, and looking, according to one report, as well as she had done any time these last ten years.

      On the same day, in 1898, when we saw Mrs. Berrington, we paid a visit to her daughter, Mrs. Emma Thompson(Emma Berrington), who was living at Cotton End, and was then 75 years of age. We found her on the allotment digging potatoes--Ashleaf Prolifics, which she and her husband had grown for the last eight and thirty years, and they would grow no other. Like her mother, she had had ten children, and seven of them were living--there are now six. She could count up 22 grand-children, but was a little uncertain about the number in the next generation. Mrs. Thompson was looking robust, and seemed to carry her years better than most people her age. She had then been living at Cotton End 56 years, and was of opinion that people lived to a great age in those parts, because it was a pleasant country and a nice air. Her husband, a shoemaker by trade, planted the orchard on the acre allotment some sixty years before.

      Ten years have passed by, and the scene shifts to a house in Houghton-road, Bedford, the residence of Mr. and Mrs. T. Litchfield, a very respectable and worthy couple, with whom Mrs. Thompson has been living for some years. Mrs. Litchfield is one of the children of Mrs. Emma Thompson. Last week we recorded the death in America of Mrs. Mary Thompson, another daughter of old Mrs. Berrington, and mentioned then that the two sisters married two brothers, hence the name. The American paper stated the age of Mrs. Berrington as 108, but it was estimated on this side of the water that she could not be so old as that, and we were informed that her daughter, Mrs. Emma Thompson, possessed documentary evidence of her correct age. This was forthcoming this week in the form of information derived from the church register. It states that Ann Berrington, daughter of James and Abigail Parish, was born on May 11th 1806, was baptised in Cardington Church, Nov. 3rd, 1811, and married John Berrington, on December 24, 1822. Her two sisters, Mary, born June 5, 1801, and Susanna, born Dec. 6, 1802, were baptised at the same time. From these dates it appears, then that she was baptised at the age of five, was married in her seventeenth year, and will be 103 years old if she lives to the 11th May next.
      To return for a moment to her daughter, Mrs. Thompson, now 85 years of age, we found her no longer the active woman of ten years ago, but bed-ridden, which has been her condition for four years, but with her intellect and memory wonderfully clear. She was delighted to have a visitor, and in a feeble, but clear and sweet voice, recalled at some length reminiscences of her life, but it was even more charming to witness the Christian piety of the old soul, her undoubted happiness, and her profound thankfulness for her blessings and consolations. Such a frame of mind under the circumstances would have seemed incredible if we had not seen her and heard her conversation. She spoke very highly of Mr. Whitbread, whom she described as a "very sensible man indeed". She has had a few visitors, but there can be no doubt that she is well-cared for by her daughter. Ours was a surprise visit, but the air of cleanliness and cheerfulness in the room was unmistakeable. Over and over again the old lady reiterated that with all the riches in the world she could be no happier, which is obvious enough, but--twelve months ago she received poor relief to the extent of 7/6, and this has barred her from the old age pension, which would have been very welcome in this case.

      The centenarian,(Ann Berrington) whose portrait shows her sitting at the door of the cottage where she has lived so long, was born at Cotton End, the daughter of a small farmer named Parish, who went to live at Hitchin for three years. His daughter, Ann, went with him, and this was the only time she was long away from Cardington. When the family returned, and the father died, it became necessary, in order to fulfill some legal-requirement, that the children should be baptised at the church. Hence the baptism of the three sisters at the same time. The two sisters have long been dead, and her brother died at Little Staughton 40 years ago. All ten children of Ann Berrington were born in the cottage where she is now living, and which she has steadily refused to leave, although she has been offered better accommodation. The old lady still has her young man lodger, who, by this time, must have lodged with her sixty years.

      Lace-making, she told us, she learned before she was five years of age, and she could sell it as fast as she could make it. Her husband was a gardener, and he was three days short of 80 years of age when he died 21 years ago. Mrs. Berrington said she remembered Samuel Whitbread, the old one of all, whose portrait in the Shire Hall at Bedford was just like him--had just his big eyes. Recalling the Waterloo days, she said that bread went up t 2/6 and a penny the peck loaf, as she remembered paying those coins; pickled pork was 15d. and 16d. per lb.; loaf sugar 14 d. and 15d. lb., and beef they never knew the price of. Yet, added the old lady, she had been the mother of ten children Mrs. Emma Thompson is the oldest, and Mr. Charles Berrington, of Waterloo road, Bedford, the youngest. The only other survivor is Joseph Berrington, of Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., and he is well in his eighties.

      I found the paper below in the files of Luceal McGregor Lewis (my mother's cousin). Joseph was her great-grandfather. Her notes said, "I do not know when Frank Berrington wrote this paper. I know that I met him in the summer of 1937 when we were in Cleveland. I was 15 at the time."

      At Cotton End, England a daughter Ann was born to James and Abigail Parrish on May 11, 1806. She was baptized in Cardington Church November 3rd 1811, and married to John Berrington on December 24, 1822, and died February 1, 1909.
      With the exception of three years, Mrs. Berrington spent her whole life, 103 years in the picturesque cottage in the lane where all her ten children were born, at Cardington near Bedford, Bedfordshire, England. It was here that Mary Berrington was born on August 31, 1825. She was married to John Thompson April 15, 1845. Their long and happy wedded life was blessed with 10 children, three of whom died in infancy. In May 1851, he came to America and settled in Cleveland. Six months later she and her two children Anna and Christian, and brother Joseph Berrington joined him in Cleveland where Mr. Thompson was engaged in selling wood and coal, operating the first coal yard on the west side of Cleveland.
      Later they moved to their farm at Middleburg, Ohio, and in 1893, having retired from active labor, they with their son Arthur moved to the farm at Sharon Center, Ohio where they spent their declining years.
      At this old homestead John Thompson passed away March 9th 1905 at the age of 80 years 4 months and 4 days, and Mary Thompson died November 2nd, 1908 age 83 years. 2 months and 2 days, and was buried at Sharon Center, Ohio.
      Their seven children, Anna, Christian, Emma, Fred, Ed, Alfred and Arthur all were living at the time of the death of their parents. Also surviving were 36 grand children and 21 great grand children. If these grand old forefathers were living today they would have 100 great grandchildren and 33 great-great grandchildren.
      At the time of the death of Mary Thompson she left her aged mother in England, one brother, Joseph Parrish Berrington of Cleveland, Ohio, (the father of Charles, Hattie, Sam, Jessie, John and Ella, one brother, Charles Berrington of Bedford, England, one sister in England one year older by the name of Emma Thompson.
      The coincidence of this name is brought about because of the fact that Mary and Emma Berrington married brothers, John and Thomas Thompson, Thomas and Emma Berrington Thompson were the father and mother of John, Mark, Anna, Emily, Joe, Charles, Elizabeth and Mary.

      Obituary - from the Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service. The obituary was in the Whitbread papers and was probably from the Bedford Record.

      We regret to announce the death of Mrs. Ann Berrington, which took place at nine o'clock yesterday morning, at the cottage where she had lived so long in the village of Cardington. As stated in our recent notice of this venerable woman, her age was at least 102 years. Mrs. Berrington herself believed that she was much older, and this belief is shared by her friends, but reference to evidence obtained from register of Cardington Church shows that she was baptised on November 3rd, 1811, and her birth is said to be dated May 11th, 1806, but as she was married on December 24th, 1822, to John Berrington, it would appear that this event took place some months before she had attained her seventeenth year. Hopes were entertained that she would live to complete another year of her age, but she had grown very feeble lately. During the very cold weather of a few weeks ago, Mrs. Berrington caught a chill, but from this illness she all but recovered. However, about ten days before her death, she again took to her bed, and as she seemed quite worn out, there were slight hopes of her recovery, and she passed away on Monday morning, death being attributed to senile decay. Of the ten children three survive, viz., the oldest, Mrs. Emma Thompson, aged 85, now living with her daughter, Mrs. Litchfield, in Houghton-road, Bedford; Mr. Joseph Berrington, of Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.; and the youngest, Mr. Charles Berrington of Waterloo-road, Bedford.
      The funeral is appointed to take place at Cardington Church next Friday afternoon at three o'clock.

  • Sources 
    1. [S12120] Beds Advertiser and Luton Times, A Bedfordshire Centenarian; 22 January 1909.

    2. [S12225] England Births on FamilySearch, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NPVX-S36; 5 May 2016; Birth and Christening of Anne Parish.

    3. [S12121] General Register Office of England, copy of register of deaths; Ann Berrington; 1 February 1909; COL319104; 19 May 2006.

    4. [S12185] Biggleswade Chronical and North Bedfordshire Gazette, 5 February 1909; Death of Mrs. Ann Berrington, Centenarian; death occurred at 9:00 am the previous Monday (1 Feb 1909).

    5. [S12185] Biggleswade Chronical and North Bedfordshire Gazette, 5 February 1909; Death of Mrs. Ann Berrington, Centenarian; Married 24 Dec 1822.