Family Names

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Who is John Bassett?

Article - 1 John Bassett of Madron (1790- 1868) 

Not much is known about John Bassett before his marriage to Martha Carbis in 1812 in the Paul Parish Church.[i]  The notation for his occupation was listed as sojourner in the parish register.
A sojourner “means someone who is a temporary resident, but in Parish Registers its meaning is a little more precise. When the Hardwicke Act was introduced in 1754, clerks were required to enter the parish for each party to a marriage. If they had been a resident for more than 3 weeks then they were shown as “o.t.p.” (of this parish). However, for someone who had only taken up residence in lodgings to avoid the necessity for banns fees, this was frowned upon and the word “sojourner” was added to the entry to indicate that they had met the letter of the law but didn't really belong.”[ii]
As John Bassett was identified as a sojourner it implies that he had moved into the parish in order to marry Martha and may not have been living in Madron for much longer than 3 weeks. 
The idea that he was not born in Paul is also supported by 1851[iii] & 1861[iv] census which gives John’s birthplace as Madron a neighbouring parish of Paul, Cornwall.


John Bassett was baptised on the 5th Sept 1790 in Madron, this date is roughly consistent with his age at death (80) in 1867, although there is a 2-year discrepancy this is probably due to the rounding up of his age at the time.[v] His father is listed as William and his mother is not given:-. 

"5 Sep 1790 John s/o William Bassett, pauper at Madron"

This could be the John Bassett who married Martha Carbis however on his death certificate it stated that his parents were farmers (which may or may not be accurate).[vi]  If his parents were farmers it is unlikely they would have been listed as paupers on his christening record. The use of the term "farmer” seems to cover pretty much anyone who owned or rented a piece of land on which they carried out some type of farming-like activity or had a small holding. Interestingly on the same death certificate his father is given as William, a farmer, and his mother is listed as Mary unknown, a farmer’s wife.

John's Siblings

After perusing the parish records I have identified John’s possible siblings, below are the transcribed entries
1.   “4 Jan 1784 Anne d/o William Basset at Madron”[vii]
2.   “11 Sep 1785 Francis s/o William Bassett, pauper at Madron”[viii]
3.   “20 Jan 1788 William s/o William Bassett, pauper at Madron”[ix]
4.   “5 Sep 1790 John s/o William Bassett, pauper at Madron”[x]
5.   “8 Mar 1792 Mary d/o William Basset, pauper at Madron private baptism"[xi]
6.   “9 Mar 1794 Mary d/o William Basset, pauper at Madron”[xii]
7.   “13 Mar 1796 James s/o William Bassett, pauper at Madron”[xiii]
8.   “17 Feb 1798 Hanna d/o William Basset, pauper at Madron private baptism”[xiv]
9.   “23 Mar 1800 Jane d/o William Basset at Madron private baptism”[xv]

Therefore we are looking for a William who was living in Madron, who could be John’s father.

Wiki Tree Links for 


Next week I will examine which of the possible Williams living in the parish of Madron is John's father.




[i] FamilySearch, Marriage Banns for John Bassett & Martha Carbis, married 15 March 1812 St Paul’s Church, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," Marriage banns, marriages, 1754-1813, Paul, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro. Accessed 14 April 2015 (image 141 of 143, https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-11130-159580-8?cc=1769414)
[ii]  Found in the Glossary of the website belonging to West Penwith Resources which can be found at  http://west-penwith.org.uk/wpenlink.htm
[iii]Ancestry.com. 1851 England Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA. Class: HO107; Piece: 1913; Folio: 245; Page: 14
[iv]Ancestry.com. 1861 England Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA. Class: RG9; Piece: 1585; Folio: 37; Page: 35
[v]Death Certificate John Bassett, Registry of Birth, Death and Marriages, Victoria, Australia. Year 1868, # 8567
[vi]Death Certificate John Bassett, Registry of Birth, Death and Marriages, Victoria, Australia. Year 1868, # 8567
[vii] FamilySearch, Baptism of Anne Bassett baptized  4 Jan 1784, Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro, (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12896-160722-42?cc=1769414  : 14 April 2015, image 2 of 100, also repeated on image 4 & 5 of 100)
[viii] FamilySearch, Baptism of Francis Bassett Baptised 11 September 1885, Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro, (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-XCT7-PBZ?i=7&wc=3CB8-824%3A138123201%2C140336001%2C1582884504%3Fcc%3D1769414&cc=1769414: 14 April 2015,  image 2 of 100.)
[ix] FamilySearch, Baptism of William Bassett Baptised 20 January 1788,  Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro,  (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12896-158019-13?cc=1769414  : 14 April 2015, image 13 of 100)
[x] FamilySearch, Baptism of John Bassett baptized 5 September 1890,  Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro,   (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12896-157190-89?cc=1769414  : 14 April 2015, image 19 of 100)
[xi] FamilySearch, Baptism of  Mary Bassett baptized 8 March 1892, Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro  (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12896-159134-89?cc=1769414  : 14 April 2015, image 22 of100)
[xii] FamilySearch, Baptism of  Mary Bassett baptized 9 March 1894, Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro  (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-XCT7-Y96?i=25&wc=3CB8-824%3A138123201%2C140336001%2C1582884504%3Fcc%3D1769414&cc=1769414 : 14 April 2015, image 26 of100)
[xiii] FamilySearch, Baptism of  James Bassett baptized 13 March 1896, Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro  (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12896-155181-98?cc=1769414  : 14 April 2015, image 30 of 100)
[xiv] FamilySearch, Baptism of  Hanna Bassett baptized 17 February 1798,  Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro  (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12896-154870-92?cc=1769414  : 14 April 2015, 35 of 100)
[xv] FamilySearch, Baptism of  Jane Bassett baptized 23 march 1900, ,  Madron Parish Church, Penzance, Cornwall, "England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010," database with images, Baptisms, marriages, burials, 1784-1810, Penzance Madron, Cornwall, Cornwall Records Office, Truro  (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12896-155106-47?cc=1769414, 14 April 2015, image 40 of 100)

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