Perkins, Mrs


Collection date: Dec 1904

Area: Devon

Mrs (Ellen) Perkin(s) at Coryton, West Devon (1857-1909): age 47, 1 song 'Forty Long Miles' (FT462) on 30 Dec 1904: While Sharp was with Rev Baring-Gould at Christmas 1904, he met up again with John & Eliza Dingle. Then he noted ‘Forty Long Miles’ (FT462) from a Mrs Perkins in Coryton (2 miles away) but there was no-one of that surname in the 1901 census. There was, however, a John James Perkin (no ‘s’) at Coryton in the 1911 census (RG14/13103 schedule 29). John was a farmer, born in Lewtrenchard in 1860 who had only recently married (second marriage Jan 1911) to Clara (née Took).

But it was John’s first wife Ellen who was Sharp’s singer and she died in Jan qr 1909 (5b 275). She was born Ellen Clifton c1857 at Broadwoodwidger, 5 miles NW of Lewtrenchard, 3rd child of Richard Clifton, carpenter then innkeeper of the Royal Oak pub at Stowford (1881). Ellen married John Perkin c1883 and they lived at Milton Abbot (1891 and 1901 censuses), where John farmed and raised their 5 children. Soon afterwards they must have moved the 6 miles north to Coryton village, where Sharp met Ellen.

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