Lady Charlotte, the Gunnings, and Aynho

August 18, 2013 at 10:57 pm (carriages & transport, diaries, history, london's landscape, news, people, research) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

Oh my gosh…

Doing just a little digging through Lady Charlotte Bridgeman’s journals, I have come across even more family — and I’m quickly learning why she knew so many whom the Smiths & Goslings knew:

Lady Charlotte’s grandfather, Orlando 1st Earl of Bradford, had a sister named Elizabeth Diana Bridgeman (1764-1810). In 1794 she married Sir George Gunning, bart. Among their children is one in particular who shows up in the diaries of the Rev. Richard Seymour of Kinwarton: Orlando George Gunning, RN. In 1830 he married Richard’s sister, Mary.

Richard’s existing diaries begin in 1832 (designated as volume 4) — so too late to comment on his sister’s courtship and wedding. Reading about Orlando Gunning’s siblings, on the Bridgeman website, made sense of so much: the estate Aynho, in Northamptonshire, was staring me in the face! (I wrote about Aynho last year.)

Published in 1989, Lili at Aynhoe: Victorian Life in an English Country House features drawings of the house by Lili Cartwright (1830s & 1840s); some of her diary entries (how I wish there had been a companion volume with MORE!) are included so that family life is fleshed out. I’ve used this book when discussing naive women artists.

Aynho_colored

Looking it up tonight, I see Elizabeth Cartwright-Hignett included some GUNNING material — for one of Orlando’s brothers, the Rev. Sir Henry Gunning married (in 1827) Mary Catherine Cartwright, one of Lili’s sisters-in-law! So, by 1830, with Orlando Gunning’s marriage to Mary Seymour, the Cartwrights were “family”. In Richard’s earliest extant diary is notation of a visit from Orlando, Mary and baby (the future Di Gunning / Di Liddell).

A quick perusal and I see mention of Orlando’s youngest siblings, Octavius (born 1804) and Elizabeth (born 1803).

Richard mentions the death of “Miss Gunning” — which is one piece from Lili’s diary published in Lili at Aynhoe, from the 17th of March: “This morning’s post brought us sad news! Lizzy Gunning died in London yesterday during the aftermath of the operation which was performed on her eight days ago…”

Richard simply mentions hearing about the young woman’s death, so I have NO idea at all about “the operation”. There is much “trimming” of Richard’s diary, but what is left has this to say about Lizzy Gunning: “This morning {19th} we learnt from the Paper the death of Miss Gunning – an account which I fear will cause much deep affliction to poor Orlando and her other brothers–”

Lizzy Gunning had seven brothers!

She would have been close in age to Richard’s own wife, Fanny (who was born in October 1803).

The Gunnings had lost a young son at the Battle of Waterloo; now Miss Gunning. And in 1852, Lady Charlotte’s diary, as well as Richard’s, discusses the accident of Orlando Gunning, who was riding in company with his daughter Di.

Read Lady Charlotte’s journal, May 1852

Richard’s comments, which last for days, has much of the same information – but I have found out WHY Mrs Vyse (Richard’s sister, another “Lizzy”) is able to open the door to Lady Charlotte: it was the Vyse home (in Chesham Street) that Orlando Gunning was brought to: The Vyses were in Windsor at the time.

Lizzy returned first, then George — both to the news of the death of their brother-in-law.

Di Gunning’s marriage – on December 8, 1852, which took place at Coolhurst (the Dickins’ estate in Sussex) – is the event which opens Richard’s twelfth volume of journals.

I’m off to search for more “familiar” names in the Lady Charlotte Bridgeman journals.

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Rev. Richard Seymour: 16 Feb 1832

January 16, 2011 at 1:55 pm (books, people, research) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Reading through letters and diaries for the early 1830s (I know, I know; I should be working about 15 years earlier than this!! I will get back to the 1810s…), I came across some exceptionally interesting news about Tring Church (St. Peter and St. Paul) and an 1832 connection with the four unmarried Smith sisters. This news I save for later, however…

But in looking through other diaries for the same year, I was searching through Richard Seymour’s published extracts (found in The Nineteenth Century Country Parson (1954), ed. by Hart and Carpenter), and just have to share two particular entries.

Richard, born in 1806, was therefore in his mid-20s in 1832; his diary shares many thoughts on the privileges his family enjoyed, contrasted to his desire to live a Christian life of duty and sacrifice. Was he idealistic, or simply young? His self-examinations can make for exhilarating reads, as in these entries (especially the second) from February 1832:

February 11: Drove Frances and Lizzy [his sisters] out to Codlington [sic: Cadlington]. Mrs. Morgan’s children’s dance. My conscience not at ease. Doubtful therefore whether I should have been there. I feel a great and I hope proper fear of being thought not to live up to what I preach. Shall avoid such things in future. May God mercifully guide me in my participation of those things which are perhaps lawful but not expedient.

February 16: While in the workhouse [his curate’s duty took him there] this evening the thought struck me, how different this scene from that of last night! [he had attended a ball at his father’s house in Portsmouth] There the handsome, well furnished and well lighted room. Here a cheerless, comfortless space with one small candle to throw its light on my book. There Youth and Beauty and affluence and careless hearts. Here the maimed, the blind, the halt, the aged, the sick, the deprived of reason, all, too, poor and destitute but for the aid of others. There the sound of music and revelry, mixed with the happy laughs. Here, the crying infant or the moan of the more aged. Most different indeed! His blessing upon my ministry, that these may become poor in spirit, as they are poor in this world’s goods, and that their heavenly and eternal prospects may grow brighter and clearer as their earthly hopes wax more dim and dismal.

Richard’s diaries are those which exist only on microfilm; I’ve blogged about them a couple times as they are among the great “missing” items; he married Emma’s sister Fanny in 1834. His sister Frances married Fanny’s brother Spencer the following spring; and eldest brother John (the Rev. Sir John Culme-Seymour, bart) later (in 1844) married the baby of the Smith of Suttons family, Maria. He and Fanny would live in the “remote” north — Warwickshire; Kinwarton to be specific.

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