Cheesefactor and brewer Thomas Earp the elder married Mary Cockayne. They had a number of children including: Thomas (born in Derby, c.1799), Sarah (bap. 9 November 1800), Mary (bap. 3 November 1802), John (bap. 24 August 1809), Maria (bap. 17 October 1813), and Jane.
Parson’s and Bradshaw’s 1818 directory lists Earp and Lassetter as cheese factors with a business in High Street, and Thomas Earp as an ale and porter brewer, cheese factor and spirit merchant, also in High Street.
Upon Thomas the elder’s death in 1831, his probated estate amounted to £200. As the sole beneficiary and executor of his late-father’s estate, he was tasked with making appropriate provision for his mother and his siblings. In 1833 Thomas the younger was involved with a property transaction involving the Croft of the White Hart, Uttoxeter, with Michael Clewley (see separate biography).
On 21 November 1825 at Uttoxeter, Wesleyan Methodist Thomas the younger married Sarah Jane Salt (1804–1856) who was born in Liverpool. They had a large family: Thomas (b.1828), Jane (b.1830), Ann (b.1832), Mary (b.1834), Sarah (b.1836), Edwin (b.1839), William (b.1841), Maria (b.1843), Henry (b.1847), Charles (b.1848), and Eliza (b.1849). For much of their married life Thomas, Sarah Jane and their family lived in High Street.
At the time of the 1851 Census Thomas employed eight men. Thomas and Sarah Jane were living with children Jane, Ann (a teacher), Mary, Sarah, Maria and Henry (the last three described as scholars at home), Charles and Eliza.
By 1861 Thomas Earp, now a widower, and his family had moved to Burton-upon-Trent. He is listed simply as an ‘agent’ with an address in Horninglow Street in White’s 1857 directory. The family unit now comprised Thomas, and his children Jane, Mary, Maria, Sarah and Eliza, his niece Louisa Ann (aged 13) and his nephew John B. Earp (aged six). Mary, Maria, and Sarah were all governesses, and although his niece Louisa had been born in Uttoxeter, his nephew John had been born in America. Also in the household were Mary A. Eddes (17), a teacher born in St Pancras, London, and Ann Calvert (31), a servant born in Uttoxeter. Louisa’s and John’s parents John, a brewer and Emma Brindley had married on 28 July 1846 at St Peter’s, Fleetwood, Lancashire.
Both Thomas Earps supplied the overseers of Uttoxeter with cheese, but not on a regular basis. This was probably because the workhouse was also in receipt of substantial amounts of milk from the likes of George Hartshorn, suggesting that the workhouse was also engaged in producing cheese.
In the late-1820s Thomas [the younger?] and Edward Saunders established the Uttoxeter Brewery Company. Thomas’ business was sufficiently prosperous for him to be able to invest in railways and to be a member of the Provisional Committees for the Leeds, Huddersfield, Sheffield and South Staffordshire, or Leeds, Wolverhampton and Dudley Direct Railway and the Tean and Dove Valley and Eastern and Western Junction Railway.
In May 1854 Thomas’ and Sarah Jane’s daughter Ann married George Jones. At some point they emigrated to Mossel Bay, South Africa. They had three children: Charles Earp Jones, Sarah Jane Jones, and George Alliebrooke Jones. George Jones died 23 May 1890, and his widow Ann on 27 November 1896 aged 62.
Bradshaw’s Railway Gazette vol. 1, (London: William James Adams; Manchester: Bradshaw and Blacklock, 1845)
Census 1841 HO107/1007/14
Census 1851 HO107/2010
Census 1861 R.G.9/1965
England and Wales Civil Registration Marriage Index 1837–1915
Herapath’s Railway Journal, 28 June 1845
Lichfield Record Office, BC11 Will of Thomas Earp, 26 October 1831
Parson, W. and Bradshaw, T., Staffordshire General and Commercial Directory presenting an Alphabetical Arrangement of the Names and Residences of the Nobility, Gentry, Merchants and Inhabitants in General (Manchester: 1818)
Poll Books and Electoral Registers 1538–1893
Francis Redfern History and Antiquities of the town and neighbourhood of Uttoxeter
RG4/2701 England and Wales, Non-Conformist and Non-Parochial Registers, 1567–1970
SRO, D3891/6/36/8/11a–d, Uttoxeter Poor Law Vouchers, George Hartshorn, 31 July 1830
SRO, D3891/6/37/2/7, Uttoxeter Poor Law Vouchers, Thomas Earp, 26 Mar 1831
SRO, D3891/6/37/4/3, Uttoxeter Poor Law Vouchers, Thomas Earp, 23 July 1831
SRO, D4452/1/15/2/14 abstract of title of Thomas Earp to the White Hart Croft Uttoxeter 1833
SRO, D4452/1/15/2/15 Lease and release of part of White Hart Croft Uttoxeter 1833
White, William, History, Gazetteer and Directory of the County of Staffordshire and of the City of Lichfield (Sheffield: 1834)
White, Francis, History, Gazetteer and Directory of the County of Derbyshire with the Town of Burton-upon-Trent (Sheffield: 1857)
N.B. This biography is a work in progress and will probably be amended as further information from vouchers and other sources becomes available.