William was the first child of Francis Furness and Margaret Woodmass. Born on 7th May 1797 in Darlington and baptised in St Cuthberts church in Darlington. His brother Thomas was my direct ancestor, my 4th great grandfather.
He married Ann Sidgwick by Licence, on 3rd August 1822, also at St Cuthberts. One of the witnesses was Thomas, his brother. The other witnesses were Ann Atkinson and James Atkinson, Innkeeper, the bondsman on the marriage licence bond. They may have been related to Mary, Thomas's wife as she was formerly Atkinson.
Their first child, Francis was baptised at St Cuthberts on 29th Dec 1824. William was described as a joiner. Another son, Joseph was baptised at St Oswald, Croxdale, an RC church, on 6th Sept 1830.
In the 1841 census, William had a large family and was a toll collector. According to the book "Those boys of Bondgate" by C P Nicholson, the tolls belonged primarily to the See of Durham and were leased to local people who then sub let to the collectors. "Furniss of the Pipe Yard was the collector fron Bondgate and he had two rough and powerful fellows stationed near Greenbank to demand toll from all whose purchases made them liable. In default a portion of the goods would be retained until payment should be forthcoming"
The market toll rights were bought out by the town in 1856. In 1884 a Furniss was still collecting tolls. See "Old Yards of Darlington". As Williams sons, Francis, Laurence, John and William were all dead by then it could have been Joseph, Henry or Frederick or maybe a grandson.
Slaters directory of Durham, Northumberland and Yorkshire listed William as follows: Darlington Shopkeepers and dealers in groceries and sundries. William Furness, Temperance Place.
Wards directory of Newcastle for 1855 for Darlington and neighbourhood recorded, William Furness, pipemaker, 8, Temperance Place.
The following is also from CP Nicholsons book:
"Firniss'Pipeyard and the opening into Windmill Lonnin are now covered by Snaith's joinery works. In Furniss' Pipe Yard, also known as Whitehall Yard, there were made clay pipes of the old public-house types, both shortones and the long variety that was in vogue before "Churchwardens" came out. " Whitehall Yard, Bondgate or FURNISS'PIPEYARD was also described in "Old Yards of Darlington" a LocalHistory Publication sold by Darlington Library. The publication also showed an advertisment from Darlington & Stockon Times "2nd April1892 Freehold houses with Pipe manufactory & other outbuildings occupied by Messrs. FURNESS & HODGSON, with a 24ft frontage to Bondgate for sale.
By the 1851 census, William was living in 8 Archer street, they have 4 working sons living with them so probably a decent standard of living. By 1861 all the sons were living together in Temperance Place but William and Ann were not with them.
Ann died in 1869 and William died on 3rd Jan 1871. His will was proved on 6th March 1872 and named executors Francis Furness, his brother and sons, William and Lawrence. Also mentioned were his son John, his married daughters Margaret Conn and Margaret Howson (or Mary) and Frances Anderson. Grandchildren Lily and Emma (daughter of his late son Francis) and Frederick, son of Frances Anderson.
Marriage "England Marriages, 1538–1973 ," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NNKW-73K : 10 February 2018), William Furness and Ann Sidgwick, 03 Aug 1822; citing St. Cuthbert'S, Darlington, Durham, England, reference p28, index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City; FHL microfilm 1,894,622.
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