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Robert lived with his family in 1861 at 11 Harley Street, Battersea aged 11 but he is missing from the 1971 census. By 1881 he was living aged 31 with his wife Jane Isabella. No occupation is given. He is present with three children: Ethel E (3), Kate Isabella (2) and Alice Eliza a second cousin aged 22 (not yet traced).  His daughter Minnie 1874-1974 has not appeared  in any census , so where was she?

He reappears again in the 1901 census at 39 Gorst Road battersea aged 50 as a diamond merchant with Jane Isabella and with children Harry H (24) diamond polisher, Ethel (23) single, Robert E (18) brass finisher and Dorothy (17) single

So Robert became a diamond cutter and apparently he won and lost several fortunes. He was asked to join a syndicate which set up De Beers but would not join” traders”!  Apparently he and his wife did not get on well and lived in separate rooms . Their children used to run messages between them.  Robert Edwin North junior, their younger son (1881-1969) quarrelled with his father, left home and settled in the Coventry area.  He became an engineer.

So what else happened here ? Any clues, anecdotes, photos please! Contact us