THE GOODLIFFE FAMILY OF BATTERSEA>
Maria Fanny RUSHTON (1851-1903)
Maria was the wife (or probably the common-law wife) of James Goodliffe. Her story starts in late 1851 when she was born to Charles and Maria RUSHTON (Marylebone Dec 1851 1/166).
Her father Charles RUSTON was born about 1830 in Staines, London
In the 1851 census the young couple were living at 14 Beaumont Mews, where Charles was a coachman.
Charles and Maria had 7 children:
In the 1861 census Charles and Maria are in Portland Palace, Marylebone where Charles was a "carman".
In 1871 they were living at 17 Beaumont Mews, Marylebone, and Charles was still a carman:
After the 1871 census, Charles and Maria seem to vanish. I cannot find them in any other census. Perhaps they emigrated.
Maria, born in 1851 (Dec qtr Marylebone 1/166) was the oldest child of Charles and Maria: see above). She is not listed with them in the 1871 census, as she was in the St Marylebone Workhouse for young mothers. She has her daughter Maria, aged under 1 month with her. In fact the young Maria was only 3 days old - the 1871 census was taken on the night of 2 April 1871 and Maria was born on 30 March 1871:
I cannot find any further reference to the younger Maria. She is not listed under that name in the 1881 census, so perhaps she was adopted and changed her name.
Relationship with James GOODLIFFE
On 13 July 1872, Maria gave birth to a son, Joseph James GOODLIFFE at 11 Lizard St, St Lukes, London. This is about 16 months after having Maria. Although she had given her name as Maria Goodliffe, I cannot find any records of a marriage, so I suggest she was James' common-law wife.
Maria and James went on to have 4 children (Joseph 1872, Emily 1874, Charlotte 1875 and Florence), before James died after apparently falling off scaffolding in early 1877. Maria had Florence Maria several months after James had died.
The census records are of little help with James' family. He "married" Maria soon after the 1871 census and died in 1877, well before the next census in 1881.
Relationship with William ARNOLD
By late 1877, Maria was widowed and had 4 young children. In the 1881 census she and the children are living with William ARNOLD. Although Maria and the children are listed under the surname of ARNOLD, again I cannot find a marriage record:
In 1891 we see the correct relationship being recorded - well almost. James, Emily, Charlotte and Florence are step children to William Arnold, but William and Charles are his full sons.
In 1901 the correct names and relationships are finally recorded:
Maria died on 31 January 1903 at the Horton Asylum, Horton Epsom. Her oldest son, Joseph James was the informant and he recorded her surname variously as "Rushton otherwise Goodliffe otherwise Arnold". Intriguingly, he gave the same story for his own name.