My great-grandmother Alice Sophia Steward, in her manuscript memoir 1, says that her father James STEWARD (123) married Alice LACELL(124) of Prittlewell, Essex. I have so far found no record of this marriage which, again according to Alice Sophia Steward, took place at Gretna.

There are birth or baptismal records of the children of James STEWARD and Alice LACELL, the first being that of James Dick STEWARD born in 1818 at Paglesham, Essex. The wedding of James STEWARD and Alice LACELL will therefore probably have been in or before 1817, and Alice herself would probably have been born say around twenty years earlier, in 1797 plus or minus a few years. Of the many LACELL/ LASELLs baptised at Prittlewell in Essex between 1760 and 1810, there is only one Alice. She was baptised in 1795 (a more exact date is not given), the daughter of John LASELL and Sarah2.

There is a marriage record of John LACELL (133) and Sarah FIRMAN (134) in 1787 at Prittlewell3. I have taken these as Alice's parents, and 1795 as the year of her baptism. It would be nice to have clearer documentary evidence that these are all the correct people.

Alice Sophia BRIGGS (nee STEWARD), in her diary4 says that her mother died shortly before the family left Dover. Alice died on 22 Apr 18445, and the cause of death is given as "congestion of the lungs", presumably TB. The place of death is given as "Extra Parochial, adjoining the Parish of St James", which seems a little odd. She was only 48.

Alice and James had 11 children.

Children of Alice LACELL(124) and James STEWARD(123)

Name Notes
James Dick Steward (181) born at Paglesham, Essex, on 02 Mar 1818 and died 25 Mar 1885. On 26 May 1853 he married Mary Louisa Harris(439) (1829-1899), the eldest daughter of his aunt Charlotte Lacell, wife of the Rev. George Harris, a Wesleyan minister according to ASB. (The Harris family was at Ringwood when the Stewards moved to Bitterne.) James Dick was a Captain in the P&O and he and Charlotte had eight children ( see separate page).
Kate Manning Steward (182) 1820-1829 (no information on the IGI)
Alice Steward (183) 1821-1829 (IGI entry for christening on 27 Jul 1821 at Hadlow, Kent).
Elizabeth Steward (184) 1822-1860 (IGI entry for christening on 16 Feb 1823 at Hadlow, Kent). She married a Col. Towers and they went to Australia and were lost sight of, according to ASB.
Charlotte Steward (185) 1825-29 (IGI record for christening on 6 Mar 1825 at Hadlow, Kent). Charlotte died "accidentally killed from a blow on her head against a beam when her father was playing and tossing her".
Mary Catherine Manning Steward (186) 1827-60 (IGI record of christening on 4 Feb 1827 at Hadlow, Kent). After her mother’s death Mary, as Alice Sophia writes, "had a hard life managing the household and all the young ones and especially trying to keep father from spending money uselessly. She never married, feeling she could not leave him and died shortly after I was married".
William Morton Steward (187) 1829-87 (IGI record of christening on 18 Mar 1829 at St. Olave, Hart Street, London). "Sent early to the Blue Coat School. The very harsh treatment then in vogue permanently injured his hearing. Later on, proving rather a dullard and shewing no leaning to any intellectal pursuit, but being very fond of gardening, he was apprenticed to a nurseryman, and later shipped off to Australia for sheep farming, but being bitten with the gold fever, he left farming, and was for many years entirely lost sight of." Did not marry.
Louisa Lacell Steward (188) 1831-59, born at Woodfield Park, Blackburn, Lancashire. There is also an IGI record of a baptism of a Louisa Saule Steward, with parents James and Alice, at Effingham, Surrey, on 12 June 1842 so perhaps she was another who was baptised by a relative later in life as the Stewards had connections in Effingham. There could easily be a transcription error in the middle name.
Jane Stringer Steward (189) Born 17 Apr 1833 at Liverpool, according to the IGI. No record of her christening. On 05 Jan 1853 she married Philip Henry Rathbone(752) (1828-1853) and had 8 sons and 3 daughters. Jane died on 14 Oct 1905 according to a member submission to the IGI for which no source details are given. There is an entry for her in the GRO deaths index for the Dec quareter of 1905 (Toxteth Park, 8b, 122). The 11 children of Philip and Jane are listed in the Rathbone pedigree given on pages 72 to 77 of Foster (1890), and for further details see the Rathbone page.
John Steward (190) 1836-66, born at Dover, Kent. Alice Sophia refers to him as John Clarke Steward, and says he married Léonie Gogael whom he met at Algiers where he came to visit Alice Sophia and her husband.
Alice Sophia Steward(6) 1841-1931, born at Dover, Kent. See her entry above.


1) This is an undated manuscript likely to be by Alice Sophia Briggs, nee Lacell, of which there is a transcription which I have made. This is different from the book, see note 4 below.
2) Familysearch, based on FHL film 6035499. This, so far as I can make out, is a microfiche of a book by J. H. Burrows, published in 1921. This would appear to be a printed register of St Mary's church, Prittlewell, Southend-on-Sea, of which a copy is in the Essex Record Office, Chelmsford ( These printed transcripts contain baptisms 1649-1812, marriages 1645-1812 and burials 1645-1812. The original registers are also in the Essex Record Office, and have been microfilmed by the LDS on film 571188, item 9, which the notes say contains baptisms, marriages and burials 1645-1812. Also filmed have been Bishop's transcripts, on film 1702507, item 3, containing baptisms and burials 1800-1820, 1842-1849, 1856-1865, and marriages 1800-1820.
3) Familysearch, based on the printed register, see note 2 above.
4) Leaves from the Diary of A.S.B. - For her Family, by A.S.B. (Alice Sophia Briggs), privately printed, 1917. This book is about 320 pages long. I have scanned it and it is available as a pdf document, but not on the web.
5) Death Certificate.

© John Stowell 2011             This file last edited on 19 June 2011.

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