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Forum Home > Can you Help ? > Haden Hill House and Alice Cockin

Katharine
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Posts: 4

I'm interested in finding out more about the circumstances of adoption of Alice Cockin and Bertha Emily Bryant by George Alfred Haden-Best at Haden Hill House.  Does anyone have any suggestions about where to look?

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March 8, 2014 at 3:11 PM Flag Quote & Reply

jaykay
Member
Posts: 3

Very potted history. Alice adopted aged four along with my 2x great aunt Bertha Emily after their fathers died. Had good education, toured europe. Alice married a local business man named Shaw, and they started married life in a restored part of old Haden Hill Hall, only moving out to Blakedown on the death of George Haden Haden-Best. She had 2 sons,George and Reggie. Bertha died aged 93, still a spinster, Hope this is of use to you.

December 11, 2016 at 9:18 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Katharine
Member
Posts: 4

jaykay at December 11, 2016 at 9:18 AM

Very potted history. Alice adopted aged four along with my 2x great aunt Bertha Emily after their fathers died. Had good education, toured europe. Alice married a local business man named Shaw, and they started married life in a restored part of old Haden Hill Hall, only moving out to Blakedown on the death of George Haden Haden-Best. She had 2 sons,George and Reggie. Bertha died aged 93, still a spinster, Hope this is of use to you.

Thanks so much for this info. I was intrigued as to how he came to adopt these two girls and what the circumstances were. Do you happen to have any details about Alice's education? Did she attend a school or college or was it a governess at Haden Hill Hall?

Did Emilay and Alice keep in touch after they married?

June 9, 2017 at 6:05 PM Flag Quote & Reply

jaykay
Member
Posts: 3

Hi Katherine. Alice and Emily both lost their father at the very young age of four.  In those days, adoption was very informal and I believe both girls still had regular contact with their families as neither mother was prepared to let them go completely.  They had governesses for home schooling and travelled extensively abroad.  when George HH Best died, Alices husband moved them all out to Blakedown, Emily included, and that is where they lived till death. Bertha Emily died in 1960, John Shaw {Alices husband} died in 1963. Hope this is of help. If you type in Haden Hill House on your browser and follow the links from Sandwell council site, you will find "Bests Angels" where there are photos of both girls, and I hope to go up and see in the very near future. 

July 30, 2017 at 12:34 PM Flag Quote & Reply

jaykay
Member
Posts: 3

Hi Katherine.  An update on Alice and Bertha. On re-reading very carefully my aunts "jottings", I have come to the conclusion that both girls were in fact around the age of fifteen when they were "adopted", and as they lived on opposite sides of town, it would be speculation to say that they knew each other. The possibility  that they both attended the same church is the most promising.  I have been up to Haden Hill House and found it fascinating. It is well worth a visit.

November 20, 2017 at 3:41 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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