Blencowe Families' Association Newsletter Vol. 20 No. 4 December 2005


I had a poignant email from Angela Blincoe Nixon: “My father was Robert Blincoe, he was born in 1932 and was murdered in Dec 1967 in Evansville Ind. I was presumed to be the only child but was introduced to someone about 15 years ago saying he was my brother. I was sheltered from a lot of the details about a lot of the things that happened and it has brought a lot of misery in my life because I was, of course, ‘Daddy's li'I girl’”. Angela had an uncle Donald Blincoe who was reluctant to tell her the story of her ancestors. She continued, “1 love my name and will carry it with me always as my middle name. I have no children, so my ancestors are all I have. I would greatly appreciate any information”

I was able to trace Angela's father Robert, the son of Lema Florence Blincoe born in Brooklyn in 1932. The history was complicated because Angela's parents were divorced and then remarried one another. Angela's was only three when her father was killed in Evansville. No one has ever given her a clear idea of what happened. One possible version was that he was shot when he entered a house he had once occupied and to which he still had a key.

A most interesting letter came from Bob Blencowe in Columbia SC, it related to Fran Blencowe's chapter in our book about Thomas Henry Blencowe who emigrated (eventually) to Lynchburg VA. Bob wrote: “The oral tradition of our family history says that our ancestor (not positive about the name) came over to the America's in 1851, possibly through Canada. We've never been able to track down the ship despite searching through many boarding records. We know that Thomas Charles' father was a one-time successful pharmacist in Berryville who later moved to Washington, DC after one of the economic collapses in the late 19th century. He is buried in Arlington (city, not cemetery) and he was also a Thomas. The fact that Thomas Henry was also a ‘pharmacist’ lends a little credence to your thought that this is our line if one assume that a son took after the father in business.

Thomas Charles' claim to fame was as a pilot for the RCAF in WW I. Although he did not become an ‘Ace’, we have a newspaper article that reports his having flown a member of the Paris Peace delegation from England to France in 1919. We have a wonderful collection of photographs that he took during the war of planes and his pilot friends. Several of the pictures are of crashed planes listing the pilot who died. He later married my grandmother (Isabel Chapman from Charlotte, NC) in 1922 and they had two sons. They were divorced in 1932 (quite a scandalous thing back then!) and their first son Thomas Charles, Jr. (my uncle) died in 1942 at 18. Thomas Charles later remarried after settling in Maryland and had a daughter by his second wife. My father pretty much lost touch with Thomas Charles after the divorce (my father was only six at the time), so that is a huge reason why our information is so scant.

Of the present day South Carolina Blencowes, we all live here in Columbia. My two brothers are both married and have two daughters and one son between them. So, it looks like there will only be one male heir to carry on the name unless something unforeseen happens. Hopefully, the name will not die out as we've all had quite a few chuckles throughout our lives trying to spell it for people.”

Bob Blencowe

Question is, which lot does Thomas Charles hook on to? Bob seemed unconvinced, but I think it must have been Thomas Henry Blencowe for, although we know most of his descendants, his settlement in Lynchburg was not his first visit to USA, he had been there for some years before. When he returned temporarily to England I believe one or more of his children stayed behind. It seems beyond belief that there were two different pharmacist Blencowes in Virginia in the 19thC. I asked Bob to send us some of the aeroplane pictures and must remind him!

I had a long letter from Martin Taylor who has done some extensive research of documents relating to the Blinco families of Hedgerley, Slough and Windsor. He pointed out that my reference to the beer house run by William Blinco (B.1814) as at ‘The George Green’, Langley Marish was incorrect. George Green is in fact a hamlet within the parish of Langley Marish (it has a street called Blinco Lane today). The Buckinghamshire Petty Session Records for 1872 record Mary Blinco (presumably William's widow, born Mary Fox) as landlady of a beer house called ‘The Windsor Castle’ in George Green. It was first licensed in 1832.

The Langley Marish tithe map of 1843 marks a house and garden in George Green as occupied by William Blinco. I assume this is ‘The Windsor Castle’. The site now lies somewhere underneath the A412, the main Slough to Uxbridge road. The entire northwest side of the village street seems to have been swept away when the road became a dual carriageway at some point in the 20th century.

I have yet to complete my study of the Petty Sessions licensing records (which in any case are incomplete). I hope I may be able to find out a bit more about Moses Blinco II and The French Horn pub. So far I have learned that the Duke of Somerset sold it complete with lease to Weller's brewery of Amersham, and that the tenants from 1821 onwards were not Blinco's.

Finally, there is a branch of the Blinco's living in Langley Marish in the 1840's/50's and earlier that are no obvious connection to my own line. They have substantial landholdings in the tithe apportionment and are listed under gentry in the trade directories. They are not tabulated in the book but some of the individuals are listed in the appendices. Any ideas? I also have a will of a Thomas Blincow of Chesham who died 1816 which came from the PCC section of the National Archives. I've never been able to place him either. [I can't identify Thomas's origins but he died in 1813 aged 79 yrs and was buried at Chesham on 23 July; he may have been a carrier. He left £I,000 to his wife in trust to go to the children of his daughter Betty. Betty was married to Robert Armstrong of Baldwins Garden, Leather Lane, Holborn. Jack B]

Martin Taylor

John Hunter wrote from Australia; ‘My GG Grandparents are the Thomas and Eliza Blencowe's mentioned on your website newsletter under the “Death of a Mountie” story. It turns out that their daughter Emily Blencowe (b.1870) is my Great Grandmother. All the names tied in perfectly as well as some of the history. My father (Hector Hunter, originally from Lismore) was telling me a few months back that he can recall the Blencowe's coming from Perth (where Ernest Blencowe the Mountie died) and that a street was named after the Blencowe's over in Perth, Western Australia.

My research so far has led me to Gawcott, Buckingham, where both Thomas Blencowe (b. 1836) and wife Eliza Bennett (b. 1835) were both born. From the 1851 UK census records it appears they lived in the same street (High Street, Gawcott) just a few doors apart. I'm fairly certain that Thomas Blencowe's father was a Thomas Blencowe (aka Blenkow) (b.1810, Gawcott). His parents are listed as William Blenkow and Hannah.’

old line
Blencowe Families' Association   Vol. 20 No. 4 December 2005
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updated: 25 March 2006