George Foreman 1802 – 1870?

Emily Foreman married John Gray on October 21st 1883 at St Philip’s Church Camberwell,when he is 63 and she is 25. George Foreman Senior is Emily’s grandfather.

George Foreman Snr was born in 1802,  in Warminster, Wiltshire,and christened on the 9th May, 1802. His father was Emmanuel Foreman, and his mother was Mary Homes. They appear to have been married on 12 Jan 1789 in Warminster.


Holy Trinity, Froome

George Senior was a wheelwright, and married Eliza Laverton on 15 Dec 1825 at Holy Trinity, Frome, Somerset. Eliza Foreman was born in about 1804, in Shepton Mallet,Somerset. Eliza died between in the autumn of 1860. They are my great great great grandparents. (breaking the rule here ‘cos I wanted to work out exactly who they were.)


George and Eliza had nine children.

  • George Foreman Jnr. b. 1827
  • Walter Foreman b.1829
  • Seleana Foreman b. 1833
  • John Laverton Foreman b.1834
  • Richard Foreman b. 1835
  • Josh Foreman b. 1837
  • Albert Foreman b. 1840
  • Alfred E Foreman b.1844
  • Sophia A Foreman b. 1847

All the children were born and christened in Bristol, apart from George Jnr who was born in Warminster, and Walter who was born in Frome. So for about 17 years they were in the parish of St Mary’s Redcliffe, and then briefly in the parish of Bedmington. The first record we have is the 1841 census where the family are living in Nelson Place in Bristol.

By 1851 the family had moved to Nursery Row, Mimms Side, Barnet in Hertfordshire.  Where George Foreman Snr was working as a wheelwright, and George Jnr, then aged 24, as a coach wheelwright. 18 year old John was a labourer,  and Josh (Joseph) Foreman was a14 year old errand boy. Albert, Alfred, and Sophia were all at school.  There is no trace of Seleana, Richard, or Walter, though Walter re-surfaces again in 1871.

By 1861, 22 year old Albert has joined the army and is serving as a gunner in the Royal Artillery, and is in Woolwich Barracks.  George Senior is living in Southwark with Joseph, Alfred, and Sophia. Eliza died the previous year.  JLF is married, living at 17 White Place, Bermondsey with 2 year old Emily, and his 71 year old widowed mother-in-law. It is not clear where George and Walter are, though both reappear in 1871. There is no evidence at all of Seleana  after 1841.

There is no real evidence of George Senior after this, so he is likely to have died prior to the 1871 census. He would have been 69 years old by then.  The only possible, but highly improbable, record is of a George Foreman, born in 1805 who died in Lewisham in 1896 aged 91.


John Laverton Foreman 1833 – 1885

Emily Foreman marries John Gray on October 21st 1883 at St Philip’s Church Camberwell,when he is 63 and she is 25, and are both shown living at 746 Old Kent Road. George (Laverton) Foreman III, her brother, is one of the witnesses not John Laverton Foreman, Emily’s father.

St Mary's Redcliffe Bristol
St Mary’s Redcliffe Bristol

John Laverton Foreman was born in Bristol and baptised on 28 Apr 1833 at St Mary Redcliffe. So he is my great great grandfather. He is the son of George and Eliza Foreman.

He is the third son of nine children

    • George Foreman Jnr. b. 1827
    • Walter Foreman b.1829
    • Seleana Foreman b. 1833
    • John Laverton Foreman b.1834
    • Richard Foreman b. 1835
    • Josh Foreman b. 1837
    • Albert Foreman b. 1840
    • Alfred E Foreman b.1844
    • Sophia A Foreman b. 1847
St John the Evangelist, Lambeth

John Laverton Foreman married Catherine Montgomery on 26 Dec 1857 at St John the Evangelist, Lambeth. His father George Foreman was a wheelwright Her father Thomas Montgomery was a watch finisher, and watchmaker originally from Dublin.

His father George Foreman Snr was born in 1802,  and christened 9 May 1802 in Warminster, Wiltshire. His father was Immanuel Foreman, and his mother was called Mary. George was a wheelwright, from Warminster in Wiltshire. George married Eliza Laverton on 15 Dec 1825 at Holy Trinity, Frome, Somerset. Eliza Foreman was born in about 1804, in Shepton Mallet,Somerset. Eliza died between Oct and Dec 1860. They are my great great great grandparents.

Prior to their marriage Catherine is living with her parents in Shoreditch. In 1851 they are at 49 Mary Street, Shoreditch. Thomas Montgomery was born abt 1790 in Dublin. Ellen Montgomery seems to have been born in Liverpool in about 1791.

  • 1851 census
  • Thomas Montgomery 61 watch finisher
  • Ellen Montgomery 60.   Ellen was born in Liverpool.
  • Catharine Montgomery 19,  she is John Laverton Foreman’s first wife
  • Joseph Wilkes 26.  Joe is Tom’s son in law, and is a gun maker
  • Anna Wilkes 26.  Ann is Catherine’s sister
  • Joseph Wilkes 2.  Joseph Jnr is Catherine’s nephew
  • Emma Wilkes 3 months. Emma is Catherine’s niece
  • Matilda Burney 33.  Both Catherine and Anna are waistcoat makers as is Matilda.

Thomas has died by 1861, and Ellen then lives with JLF, and Catherine. In both 1861,and 1871, she is living with them.

In 1861, John L Foreman, 27, is living at17 White Place, Bermondsey, and working as a boilermaker in Hammersmith.  Catherine, 28, is working as a waistcoat maker, and in this census is shown as born in Liverpool; like her sister Anna. Ten years later, her birthplace is given once again as Dublin, which is what it was in 1851, and 1871. Emily aged 2 is living with them, and Catherine’s mother, aged 71 is also living with them.

By 1871, they have moved to 27 Mint Street, Bermondsey. John Foreman, aged 38, is shown as a smith in Hammersmith, born in Bristol. Catherine, aged 39, is still a waistcoat maker, but once again born in Dublin. They now have two children, Emily aged 12, and George (L) Foreman III, aged 9. Ellen Montgomery now aged 81, is still living with them.

Catherine has died somewhere between the 1871 and 1881 censuses, and JLF is living with 19 year old George  who is described as a Teacher (Unemployed  Schoolmaster), and Emily who is 22. They are living at 12 Darwin Street in Bermondsey, at the far end of, what is now, Tower Bridge Road. John describes himself as an iron smith, and widower. He is 48 years old.

John Laverton Foreman  remarries in 1883 on 11th  January as a 47 yo widower to Eliza Sparrow, 39 at St Mary Magdalene, Southwark. Her parents are witnesses. his father’s profession is a wheelwright, and her father Elijah Sparrow is a gardener.  Both are living at 12 Darwin Street, which just off the Old Kent Road, and Tower Bridge Road.

John dies between Oct and Dec 1885 aged 52 in Camberwell.


We regret to announce the death, on December 31, at 10.30 a.m. at St. Peter’s Priory, Hinckley, of the Rev. Wilfrid Lescher, 0.P., P.G., aged sixty-nine. He was buried. at Mount St. Bernards, Charnwood Forest, on January 5, the Requiem being celebrated at Hinckley by Very Rev. Father Bede Jarrett, 0.P., while Father Laurence Shapcote, Father Vincent McNaliob, Father Lewis Thomson, Father Michael Browne, 0.P., were present in the choir. The chief mourner was his nephew, Mr. Edward Lescher. Father Wilfrid had been a well-known figure in English Catholic. life for many years. He came of the old Lescher family, of Boyles Court, Brentwood, a younger son of Joseph Sidney Lescher and Sarah Harwood, but was born at 17, Church Row, Hampstead on October 2, 1847. His school days were spent at the famous Catholic Academy of Mr. James Butt, at Prior Park and at Ushaw, whence he passed to join the Dominican Order at Woodchester, September 3, 1864. Ordained priest on March 8, 1873, he was stationed successively in various Dominican Priories, besides remaining for nearly seven years as chaplain to Mathew Liddell, Esq., of Prudhoe Hall. Later he obtained leave to study theology at Louvain, under Father Lepidi, 0.P., at present Master of the Sacred Palaces in Rome, and returned to England in 1884. In 1889 he was elected Prior of Woodchester, and in 1910 Prior of Pendleton. He also was for three years chaplain to the contemplative Dominican Nuns at Carisbrooke. But his main work consisted in preaching and writing. In the latter field he was a strenuous fighter, especially for the Anti-Vivisection Society (on the general committee of which he served for some years) and in Catholic controversial literature. But of late years he has been especially prominent in the discussed authenticity of St. Dominic’s founding of the Rosary. Following the Papal tradition he defended the conservative view in letters, pamphlets and articles, which exhibited his dogged loyalty of character and the warmth ‘of feeling which lay behind an exceedingly impassive appearance and manner. After three months of general enfeeblement resulting from a slight paralytic shock, he died of suffusion of blood to the head on the last day of the year. Those who followed his intense devotion to the Rosary will notice with a sense of fitness that his last Mass was said on the octave day of Rosary Sunday. A staunch friend, a just and fatherly ruler, his going will be felt by a wider circle than his own Order.—R.I.P.

13th January 1917



It is well nigh the universal custom now to place the arrangements for formal dinners, suppers, etc., in the hands of caterers, for experience has conclusively proved that in this way only can the most desirable results be attained. Of course the success of an occasion in which a collation bears a prominent part is dependent directly upon the quailty of the refreshments and the efficiency of the service, and therefore the selection of a caterer is a matter calling for no little care and discrimination. The residents of East Orange are excellently well served in this respect, for in Messrs. Purssell Brothers they have a firm of caterers who have few equals and no superiors. gentlemen are natives of New York city, and were formerly connected with the celebrated ” Purssell Company ” of Nos. 910, 912 and 914 Broadway. They utilize spacious and finely-appointed premises at No. 561 Main street, and do a general catering business, besides carrying on a first-class bakery. The main floor is 25 x100 feet in dimensions, and every facility is at hand to insure the comfort of patrons and render it easy to fill orders promptly and accurately. The bill of fare is very extensive and varied, comparing favorably with those offered at the leading New York establishments, and as the cooking is excellent and the service remarkably prompt and efficient, it is natural that this establishment should enjoy a large as well as a select patronage. A great varietv of creams and ices are obtainable here, and are furnished by the quart and delivered at residences at moderate rates. French, Vienna and American bread and rolls will be delivered every morning, and patties, pastry, etc., are made fresh every day. Some of the specialties of this concern are fine assorted cakes, Dundee, lady and wine cakes, gingerbread, birthday cakes, Purssell’s English plum cake. plain or decorated, English plum pudding, English mince meat, and Purssell’s calves’ foot jelly for invalids. The finest quality of French fruit is always in stock. Dinners, wedding breakfasts, suppers, etc., will be supplied with every requisite, and orders by telephone (No. 316), are assorted prompt and careful attention.

Purssell Brothers – New Jersey

The name of Purssell is prominently connected with bakery interests in the east, and, as associated with any enterprise in that line, is a guaranty of the excellence of the articles manufactured by the house. James Purssell, the father of the Purssell Brothers, was born in London, England, and made his home in his native city until 1859, carrying on business as a baker and confectioner at Cornhill for many years.

Crossing the Atlantic to the New World, he established himself in the same line of business in Broadway, New York City, near Twenty-first street, and his superior knowledge and understanding of the business soon brought him a constantly increasing trade. His growing patronage from time to time necessitated the enlargement of his facilities in order that he might meet the demands of his patrons, for the excellence of the articles manufactured soon won him a most enviable reputation, and the name of Purssell connected with pastry or confectionery was taken as a guaranty of superior quality. Mr. Purssell continued to conduct a large and profitable business in New York until his death, which occurred March 4, 1887. Previous to that time a stock company was formed, which uses the name of the Purssell Manufacturing Company. After his death, however, the family had no further connection with the corporation, the new company simply securing the right to use his name, which they found gave their business a prestige otherwise unattainable.

Mrs. Purssell bore the maiden name of Eliza West, and she is still living. Their children, in order of birth are as follows:

  • James,
  • William A.,
  • Arthur J. ;
  • Eliza C, wife of J. Louis Kight, of London, England;
  • Francis J.,
  • Charles,
  • Charlotte J.,
  • Mary L.
  • and George.

In 1887, after his father’s death, James Purssell, Jr., established a bakery business in East Orange (N.J.), continuing the same until 1889. when the business was reorganized under the name of Purssell Brothers, the partners being Francis J. and Charles Purssell. Their mother still resides in East Orange.

Francis J. Purssell, who is the managing director of the firm, was born in New York city, April 19,1863, and his brother, Charles, who is financial manager of thebusiness, was born in New York, May 31,1865. Both were educated in the Catholic schools in the city of their nativity, and in early life began working in their father’s establishment, so that they are fortified by practical experience and long training for the work they now have in charge. Their business in East Orange has assumed extensive proportions, and they employ a large force of competent men at the head of the various departments. The place is characterized by a neatness that would be difficult to improve upon, and the artistic manner in which they put their products upon the market is one of the attractive features of the enterprise, and combined with their honorable dealing, has brought them a very gratifying success. The brothers are both energetic and enterprising business man, whose careful oversight of their interests has made them prosperous, and Essex county numbers them among her most reliable and highly respected businessmen.

Biographical and genealogical history of the city of Newark and Essex County, New Jersey .. Volume 1: Isaac T Nichols: published 1907


Page 22, 30th April 1938


Mr. Thomas Edward Lescher, 0.B.E., of Birkdale, managing director of Evans Sons, Lescher and Webb, wholesale druggists of Liverpool, died on April 24th, after a fall, probably caused by a seizure, while skating at an ice-rink in Liverpool on the previous evening.

The elder son of the late Frank Harwood Lescher, his mother was Mary O’Conor Graham, daughter of Patrick Grehan, J.P., of Mount Plunket, Co. Roscommon. He was born on June 12th, 1877, and was educated at Stonyhurst, becoming the thirty-eighth President of the Stonyhurst Association in 1917, and later acting as Chairman of the Stonyhurst War Memorial Council. During the War he was responsible, under the National Health Insurance Commission, for the supply and control of drugs and chemicals needed by the public, and in 1920 his services were recognized by the grant of the O.B.E. From 1933 to 1935 he was Vice-Chairman of the Liverpool Chamber of Commerce, and for the two following years he was Chairman. He was also a Freeman of the City of London.

In matters concerned with the Church he gave unsparingly of his time and abilities, and at various times he was Chairman, and later Vice-President, of the Westminster Catholic Federation, Chairman of the Catholic Confederation of England and Wales, President of the London Circle of the Catenian Association, Vice-President of the Catholic Reading Guild, Vice-President of the Liverpool Archdiocesan Branch of the Board of Catholic Action, and Chairman of the Liverpool Branch of the Catholic Truth Society. In addition to his notable abilities and unbounded energy, he had a capacity for enthusiasm which enabled him to throw himself with gusto into whatsoever he undertook, into games as well as into his business activities, and his work for the Church. At skating, in which pursuit he lost his life, he was particularly proficient, holding the Gold Medal of the National Skating Association, and being a member of the council of that body.

Mr. Lescher married on October 21st, 1903, Ella Mary, daughter of Louis Marino Casella, of Hampstead, who survives him with ten children. His third son, the Rev. Sydney George Harwood Lescher, was recently ordained in Rome.

Peter Pence – Rome, April 1886

The majority of the Roman postings are either events Mgr Henry O’Bryen was at, or things that were happening in Rome at the time. He  moved to Rome in 1873, and lived there until his death in 1895; “Mgr. O’Bryen had the spiritual care of all the Catholics of English tongue, and the Church of St. Andrea della Valle, parochial for the Piazza di Spagna and its neighbourhood, was that in which he heard confessions.”. He became a papal chaplain to Leo XIII (Cameriere Segreto Sopranumerario) in 1881, and also served as a papal ablegate.

from The Tablet Page 17, 10th April 1886 


pope in sala regia
Sala Regia

Yesterday, at the close of the weekly  sermon  delivered coram Sanctissimo, by the Apostolic Preacher, the Rector of the English College, in private audience of his Holiness, made offering of  £100 as Peter Pence from the Bishop of Southwark, being his lordship’s first contribution ; and received from the Pope his thanks and Apostolic Benediction for the Bishop, the clergy, and the faithful of that diocese.

He also presented to the Holy Father a copy of the Leaves from St. Augustine, by Miss Mary H. Allies, in which volume the Pope was greatly interested, making numerous inquiries and listening with pleased attention to the explanation given by Mgr. O’Callaghan ; whom he charged to convey the assurance of his paternal approbation and heartfelt blessing to the gifted authoress.

The English Sisters, known as the Poor Servants of the Mother of God, founded by the late Lady Georgiana Fullerton, have, with the special blessing of his Holiness, and at the express desire of the Cardinal Vicar, opened a House in Rome at 16, Via San Sebastianello, where on the Feast of the Annunciation they held an interesting re-union, presided over by Cardinal Parocchi, who, after the sermon—in English— delivered by Father Whitty, S.J., addressed the assembly in French, and gave Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.

Among those present were the Rectors of the English and Scots College, Mgr. Stonor ; Mgr. O’Bryen, the Guardian of the Irish Franciscans of St. Isidore ; Father Armellini, S.J. ; Fathers Cody and Carney, 0.S.B. ; Mr. A. G. Fullerton ; the Princess Piombino ; the Countess of Denbigh ; the Marchesa Serlupi ; the Sisters of the Little Company of Mary, and many other guests, who at the close of the ceremony were presented to the Cardinal Vicar.