Hedgecock Family Tree
Welcome! My name is William David Hedgecock and I am the webmaster of Hedgecock Ancestry web site. This page was created on 05 Aug 2009 and last updated on 20 Oct 2009. There are 1997 names in this family tree. The earliest recorded events are the births of John Hitchcock and Joseph Asbrooke in 1565.The most recent event is the death of Marguerite Leary in 2006. If you would like to find out more about our ancestry please visit the website of our family tree. You can view only deceased people until you register then you can visit both past and living. If you wish to view the current content please contact me for access.
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About The Hedgecock's of Warrington
In the Beginning
Richard & Peter Hitchcock
Every person living in Lancashire or Cheshire, named Hedgecock or Hedgcock and
recorded in the 1881 census, with the exception of two individuals, one born in
Yorkshire, the other in Middlesex, and one family originating in Hampshire, was
descended from or related by marriage to either Peter or Richard Hitchcock both of
whom were living in Warrington, Lancashire in the 1780s and 1790s.
The first record of Richard was his marriage to Esther Winstandly at the Parish
Church of St.Elphin in Warrington on 16 December 1776. Both were recorded as "of this
parish". Between 1778 and 1802 the baptisms of ten of their eleven children were
recorded and unfortunately the burials of six. During this time Richard's occupation
was variously described as fisherman, weaver and mariner. By 1815 all three sons who
survived to marry were known by the name Hedgecock or Hedgcock.
Peter's marriage to Rachel was not recorded in the bishop's transcripts of marriages
at St.Elphin and the date, location and Rachel's maiden name are still unknown. The
first reference to Peter at St.Elphin was the baptism of his son, Thomas, on 3 June
1781 and between then and 1794 a further four children's baptisms were recorded
there, as was the burial of a sixth in 1797. Peter was always described as a nailor.
The burial of Peter was recorded in the bishop's transcripts on 16 October 1810. The
entry is faint but appears to give his age as 54 which would give a birth date of
Early Warrington Records
From the Warrington St.Elphin burial details it appears that Peter Hitchcock was born
about 1756 and if Richard married in his early twenties he would have been born in
the early 1750s but there is no record of either christening at St.Elphin’s.
Peter and Richard and their children however were not the only Hitchcocks living in
Warrington during the 18th.century. The marriage of Elizabeth Hitchcock to Joseph
Rylance, a fisherman and mariner, is recorded at St.Elphin’s in 1771 and they had six
children, including twins, who were christened there by 1780, but four of these died
in early infancy. If we assume that Elizabeth was in her late teens or early
twenties when she married, she was born in the late 1740s or early 1750s and it is
tempting to conclude that Elizabeth, Peter and Richard were siblings. Again there is
no record of Elizabeth’s birth or christening.
The burials of two adults at St.Elphin’s are of interest. John Hitchcock, a
fishmonger, died in 1782 aged 70 and Betty Hitchcock, a widow aged 75, died in 1790.
There is no indication that John and Betty were married and their ages suggest that
they were rather old to have been the immediate parents of Elizabeth, Peter and
A single entry appears for the christening of Mary Ann, daughter of Robert Wilson
Hitchcock and his wife Sarah in 1766. In the bishop’s transcripts of St.Elphin
Robert appears to have the unlikely occupation of “comedien”. There is no earlier
record of this family and the impression is of a family arriving in Warrington about
this time. If there is a relationship between Robert and Elizabeth, Peter and
Richard, is Robert the father bringing with him teenage children or is he an older
brother. Further what if any is the relationship to John and Betty.
In the 1730s Thomas Hiscock and his wife Margaret had a son, Thomas, and five Hiccock
marriages were recorded between 1730 and 1758 but it appears that the baptisms of the
father or fathers of Peter, Richard and Elizabeth must be found outside Warrington or
at least outside St.Elphin’s
The Search for Origins
How then did Richard and Peter, Elizabeth and Robert arrive in the Lancashire market
town of Warrington in the second half of the 18th.century and where were they born?
It seems logical to investigate the records in those localities close to Warrington
where Hitchcocks are to be found at the same time that Richard and Peter were living
in the town and earlier. The town of Warrington is situated on the north bank of the
Mersey which formed the boundary at that time between the County Palatines of
Lancaster and Chester. It is about midway between Manchester and Liverpool being
about 15 miles from each. The regions adjacent therefore are Cheshire to the south
and the south west corner of Lancashire to the north.
Richard and Peter were raising families from the late 1770s to 1790s. Their
contemporaries included Daniel Hitchcock who married Hannah Martin at the Cathedral
Church of Manchester in 1789, Joshua who married a widow, Mary Sanders, in 1790 also
at the Cathedral where a year later he married Sarah Ogden with whom he had three
children in nearby Wilmslow in Cheshire. The Cathedral records also refer to a
Thomas Hitchcock whose daughter Mary was baptised in March 1793. A Thomas Hitchcock
and his wife Ann also had a child baptised at St.Mary’s Church, Stockport, contiguous
to Manchester, in October of the same year, 1793, and a Thomas and Ann later had five
children baptised at the Cathedral between 1802 and 1811.
Meanwhile in neighbouring Cheshire a John Hitchcock and his wife Elizabeth had a son,
John, baptised at St.Michael’s Church, Macclesfield in 1773, and in the parish of
Acton by Nantwich a Robert Hitchcock married Mary Watkin in 1786. Also about four
miles from Nantwich at St.Margaret’s Church in Wrenbury a Sophia Maria Hitchcock
married Thomas Ashley in 1771. Even closer to Warrington the marriage of Joseph
Hitchcock and Betty Benson took place in 1798 in the parish of Winwick which is
virtually a suburb of Warrington on its northern border. If born about 1778 Joseph
could be an early son of Peter as we do not know the date of his marriage to Rachel,
nor if Thomas, born in 1781, was their first child. Of a similar age to Richard and
Peter would be Elizabeth Hitchcock, baptised in 1757 in Ormskirk, some 20 miles north
west of Warrington, to parents Luke and Jane.
2. Earlier Hitchcocks
When we look for slightly earlier Hitchcocks we find a significant number around the
Nantwich area in Cheshire. Robert and Sophia Maria have already been mentioned. In
the Parish of Nantwich itself an Elizabeth Hitchcock married James Pemberton in 1750
and the baptism of one child was recorded. Mary Hitchcock married John Willett in
1748 and there are two known children of the union. Also Richard Hitchcock married
Elizabeth Savage in 1744 and they had a daughter Sarah baptised in 1750, and finally
in Nantwich Sarah, the wife of John Hitchcock, a soldier, died in 1742.
In nearby Spurstow in the Parish of Bunbury, Thomas Hitchcock, a yeoman farmer, died
in 1744 but while his will refers to several surviving grand-children none bore the
name Hitchcock. It is interesting to note that although in his will he asks to be
buried in Bunbury Churchyard there is no evidence of his burial. A stone confirming
that Sarah the wife of Thomas Hitchcock of Spurstow who died in 1728/9 was buried
there adds to the mystery.
It is also of particular interest that the names John, Richard, Thomas, Elizabeth and
Mary, admittedly common Christian names at that time were all used by Richard and
Peter when naming their children.
Meanwhile in Lancashire, a Thomas Hitchcock had a daughter, Mary baptised in 1740/1
in West Derby, now a part of Liverpool and further north in Leyland in 1727/8 a Mary
Hitchcock had a daughter, also named Mary baptised.
In the City of Chester at St.Peter’s Church a Thomas Hitchcock married Sarah Finchett
An earlier family of Hitchcocks were to be found in Frodsham in Cheshire where Martha
Hitchcock married Henry Abbott in 1722 and where much earlier John Hitchcock married
Anne Astbrooke in 1617 and had a son John baptised in 1620.While there were many
Hiccocks around Chester in the 17th. and 18th.centuries I have not considered these
as possible ancestors. However, in view of the above records the marriage of Ellen
Hiccock and Joseph Asbrooke in Frodsham in 1583/4 may be significant.
Finally in Burton in the Wirral, the strip of Cheshire between the Rivers Dee and
Mersey, a Thomas Hitchcock married a Jahne Meloose in 1686.
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