Thorne, John

Collection date: Jan 1906

Area: Somerset - West


John Thorne of Alcombe (1836-1916): age 70, 2 Mummer’s songs (FT768,9) on 12 Jan 1906: John sang 2 songs extracted from the Minehead Mummer’s Play (one in key G, one in key D). John later provided the text of the play to Clement Kille, a local journalist and folklorist. The play was published in 1908 and revived in Minehead public hall in January 1909 by the newly formed Guild of St George (West Somerset Free Press Jan 16 1909). The President of this Guild was Rev Frank Etherington, the vicar of Minehead and one of Sharp’s intermediaries:

John Thorne was baptised on 14/2/1836 at Carhampton church, son of John Thorne, a stone mason and his wife Betsy. On 24/4/1858 in Minehead church John married Sarah Morgan, daughter of Thomas Morgan, a watchmaker. They settled in Alcombe and had six children. John was a stone mason all his life. His wife Sarah died in 1887 and John’s daughter Betsy stayed on as his housekeeper in subsequent censuses. In 1901 John was listed as aged 65, living in Stanton, a nearby hamlet (ref RG13/2262 f32 p31). He was back in Alcombe by 1911 and probably died there June qr 1916 (Williton 5c 342).

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