Ann Flindell (1804-1881)

Ann was born at Truro, Cornwall on January 30th 1804[1] and was baptised on August 20th, 1804 along with her sisters, Matilda, Elizabeth and Alice. She was the eighth child of Thomas Flindell and Mary Brunton.  In 1803 her father Thomas moved to Lemon Street, Truro and launched The Royal Cornwall Gazette.  The first edition was published on 2 July 1803 and soon became the first successful newspaper in Cornwall. On March 7th 1804 he scooped all the big newspapers with a special edition when he published news of Nelson’s great victory and death at Trafalgar.  In 1821 Ann was to see her father sentenced eight months imprisonment in HM Gaol Exeter for Libel on the Queen.  She was to suffer another setback when her father died on July 11th 1824.

Newspapers and publishing was perhaps not a happy backdrop to Ann’s childhood and emergence to womanhood.  She would have been cosseted by the family during these years, but it was not until 20 years later that the next phase of her life was to start.  On July 19th 1848, Ann[2] married Henry Conquer King at All Souls, Saint Marylebone in London[3].  King was a referred to as “a Navy man”, which has been confirmed by The Royal Navy List.  Henry King Conquer was listed under Paymasters and Pursers, with Dates of their Seniority of 1846 (possibly 31 December).  But what a brave soul she was to marry him knowing he had been through Bankruptcy Court.  The following article appeared The London Gazette of 1847[4]:

WHEREAS a Petition of Henry King Conquer, of Pelham-terrace, Brompton, previously of the Somerset Hotel, Strand, both in the county of Middlesex, before, Jermyn-street, Saint James’s, and before that of Northumberland-street, Strand, both in the said county of Middlesex, previously of Devonshire-place, Dover-road, Southwark, in the county of Surrey, part of the time Clerk in Charge, and then Paymaster and Purser in the Royal Navy, now on Half-pay, an insolvent debtor, having been filed in the Court of Bankruptcy, and the interim order for protection from process having been given to the said Henry King Conquer, under the provisions of the Statutes in that case made and provided, the said Henry King Conquer is hereby required to appear in Court before Henry John Shepherd, Esq. the Commissioner acting in the matter of the said Petition, on the 9th day of March next, at half past eleven in the forenoon precisely, at the Court of Bankruptcy, in Basinghall-street, in the city of London, for his first examination touching his debts, estate, and effects, and to be further dealt with according to the provisions of the said Statutes ; and the choice of the creditors’ assignees is to take place at the time so appointed. All persons indebted to the said Henry King Conquer, or that have any of his effects, are not to pay or deliver the same but to Mr. William Turquand, No. 13, Old Jewry-chambers, London, the Official Assignee, nominated in that behalf by the Commissioner acting in the matter of the said Petition.

Little more is known of Ann and even less of her husband.  The 1881 English Census lists Ann (77) as a Lodger at 39 Regent St, St Pancras and Jane (74) as her Sister.  Under “Occupation” both are listed as “Annuitant”. Under “Condition as to marriage”, Ann is listed as Widow and Jane as Single.  She was mentioned by Francis Richard Flindell in a letter to George Simpson in which he sates, among other things:

In 1879 I was sent to London, and placed under the guardianship of my two great aunts – Aunt Conquer and Aunt Jane who lived in No. 39 Regent Square just off Grey’s Inn Road, by Kings Cross Station.

How was Henry King Conquer received by the Flindell family?  One assumes reasonably well.  Francis Bassett Shenstone Flindell, Ann’s younger brother by almost six years, his last son, born in 1852, Henry Conquer.  That was just four years after Ann married, so was this to honour the name Conquer, which may suggest Henry King Conquer had died prior to March 1852.

[1] IGI British Isles Batch P009361, Source 022623, church records. Location of Birth is based on the family moving to Lemon St Truro in 1803. Letters held in the Historical Collections section of Fremantle Library state Ann was born 10 January 1804; however, the church record date has been adopted.

[2] The marriage and death record lists her as Anna

[3] From letters by Matilda held by Mrs. E. Vagg (nee Flindell) and Free BDM – September quarter 1848 district of Marylebone, Volume 1 Page 183

[4] The London Gazette, Friday, February 19, 1847