11 July 2012
Family History - Any knowledge of Thomas Law and his wife Christiana?

We have received the following request from Val Slater. If anybody can help, would they please contact Val by emailing her at val.slater@btinternet.com.

Does anyone have information about the life and times of Thomas Law - schoolmaster of Thornton Steward on the 1841 Census - and his wife Christiana, nee Metcalfe? Thomas was the youngest son of Rev James Law of Coverham and he married Christiana at Thornton Steward on 26 October 1837. The space for naming Christiana's father on their marriage certificate is left blank. Thomas was born in 1796 at Horsehouse and Christiana in 1808 - place unknown. They died within 2 weeks of each other in Oct/Nov 1842 - leaving three young children - and are buried in Thornton Steward churchyard. Was there an epidemic of some kind in 1842 to which they might have succumbed? Does anyone know when Thomas became schoolmaster? The Baines Directory of 1823 lists John Story as the schoolmaster.

Their two daughters are also remembered on the gravestone. Ann died in 1845 aged 7 and Margaret died in 1851 aged 12. Months before her death Margaret was a scholar at the Servants' School in Casterton, Westmorland which was linked to the Clergy Daughters' School attended by most of the Bronte sisters.

Happily the son of Thomas and Christiana, James Thomas Law, thrived whilst living with his uncle and after a time in London as a law clerk he returned to Thornton Steward to marry Sarah Jane Atkinson. He is later found in Liverpool as a wealthy manufacturer. Eventually the family moved to California where many of his descendants live today.

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