Some Carnyorth Homes and Households: 1588 to the early twentieth century
Myrtle Cottage, Newlyn Town
Wellington Place and Wellington Terrace: a Regency Row in Penzance
Three Homes Condemned, Iris Green
The Hamlet of Kerrow in Zennor
Bostrase: The Story of One Cornish Farm and One Cornish Family
Households and the Home Community: Victorian Farmers' Marriages at Rosemodress
Christopher Hawkins and Trewinnard 1750-1767
Industrial Village to Peaceful Hamlet: Halsetown Homes 1832-1950
Sea, Sunshine and Sanitation at St Ives
Master Mariners' Homes in Nineteenth-Century Newlyn
1. Rooms of Distinction by Dawn Walker
During the fifteenth century, carpentry specialists began to appear, to make the more sophisticated designs for testers, tables, benches and the early chests of drawers. The latter were, as their name suggests, chests with one (at first) drawer added at the bottom of the chest. These developed into chests of several drawers in the 1500s but they are not generally documented in Cornwall until 1660. Carvers were employed to decorate the furniture of the better-off, turners began to produce turned furniture legs and chair backs, and joiners to develop the joined or jointed (mortise and tenon joints) furniture that was common by 1560. Cofferers, continuing from the late medieval period, made chairs covered in leather or fabrics, as well as coffers themselves. This meant that many more trades were becoming associated with furniture, such as cordwainers, curriers, weavers and basket makers - the latter made woven cradles. However, from the fifteenth century onwards, furniture making itself had begun to be a specialised branch of joinery.
2. Some Carnyorth Homes & Households from 1588 to the Early Twentieth Century by Carlene Harry
Mary, nee Wall, was born in Carnyorth in 1841, one of 14 children of whom 12 survived. In 1862, she married her first husband William Grenfell, a miner. They had a son and two daughters. Like so many Cornish miners at this time he went abroad to find work, going to Colorado to mine for Gold. Mary worked as a live-in maid in Penzance, only seeing her children, who were with other family members in Carnyorth, on her Sunday afternoons off. She left Penzance after lunch for Carnyorth, walked the six or so miles there and back, getting back in time to do the supper dishes. In 1879, she decided to go to Colorado to join William, it is thought because he stopped sending money home. She was delayed in New York where one of her daughters died of measles, and where she lost her trunk of best clothes. On arrival in Denver, Mary was told William had died the week before of mountain fever. Knowing Mary was on the way, they had tried to delay the burial but eventually had to perform it the day before. Within three weeks of her arrival in Nevadaville/Bald Mountain her second daughter died. The miners from the St. Just area built Mary a shack to live in. With only four and a half sovereigns left in her purse she had to make a living so, from four in the morning until midnight she washed and baked for 24 Cornish miners. After a time, she opened a well-patronised boarding house for miners from St. Just. In 1880 she married Andrew Stevens, a mine captain. They had one daughter, Lillie Evelyn, born in 1882. The family came home in 1892.
3. Wellington Place and Wellington Terrace, A Regency Row in Penzance by Sue Nebesnuick, with Veronica Chesher, Isobel Craig & Dawn Walker
By 1856 and for the next twenty years or so No 4 Wellington Terrace was to be the home of Ann Mitchell a spinster and landed proprietor from Helston and her two domestic servants. Mrs William Bolitho briefly lived in the house in the 1880s until in 1890 it became the home of the artist Norman Garstin. The Garstin family were to live in the house for the next sixty-seven years until Alethea Garstin, the last remaining member of the family felt forced to leave because of the demolition of the painting studio she had shared with her father to make way for the car park for Penlee House where, ironically, Norman Garstinâ€™s most well known painting - The Rain it Raineth - is always displayed. The life and work of Norman Garstin and his family is well documented; Norman was a founder member of the Newlyn School of painters and he made several paintings of both the interior and exterior of No. 4.
4. Bostrase: The Story of One Cornish Farm and One Cornish Family by Joan Howells
The farmhouse where the Laitys of the seventeenth century lived was thatched, and built of cob and killas. There are remains of an old killas quarry (Quarry Field) at the top of the hill, which could have supplied the stone. The yard was on an incline, with the farmhouse at the higher end, the farm gate at the lower end, and farm buildings on either side. At the front of the house, separate to the yard, was a small, sunken, formal garden, which remains today. In the garden stands a substantial stone built poultry house, with nesting places for a dozen birds. The garden led into two orchards with native Cornish apple varieties, and pear and medlar trees. Bostrase farmhouse itself was an L-shaped building with two external doors - one at the front of the house leading to the garden, and the kitchen door accessed from a small walled court. The wide front door led into a passage with a room on either side, on one side of which was the parlour, with the other being the dining room. (Bostrase burnt down in 1958 - Ed.)
5. Victorian Farmers at Rosemodress by Sally Corbet
Apparently the social world was rather small in Sally Prowseâ€™s young days (she was born in 1844, ed.). Farm work would bring together those who lived on the â€˜old Manorâ€™ and Methodism created another focus of encounters, centred at Borah after the chapel was built there early in the nineteenth century. By the next generation, the social world had expanded to include Lamorna, Trevelloe and St Buryan, perhaps assisted by the opening of the school in Lamorna and increased school attendance. But that was the last generation in which marriages could be interpreted with the aid of a map of the farms, chapels and schools of West Penwith and a series of census listings. In the 1930s, when cars were widely available, young people from the surrounding villages congregated on Penzance Promenade after attending their local chapel on Sundays, and a man might walk a girl home, even as far as Lamorna. For local people this ritual shifted to St Buryan when petrol was hard to get during the second world war, but it returned to Penzance when the war ended. More recently, social horizons have extended greatly as a result of changes that include the development of transport, higher education away from home, and the internet. For many people, the home community is no longer tied to a piece of land with longstanding family associations.
6. Christopher Hawkins and Trewinnard 1750-1767 by Cedric Appleby
The Trewinnard coach, now in the Royal Cornwall Museum, Truro, must have arrived with Christopher Hawkins from London, at least as early as 1750. There is no reason to doubt the family tradition that it was obtained from the Spanish ambassador by Hawkins, who then passed it to the Sheriff of London. It was built about 1700 and it is probably Spanish or Portuguese in origin. It was expensive to maintain with its coach horses and of very limited use, given the state of the roads at the time. There is evidence from the accounts from 1755 that some effort was made to improve or even build a road from the house to the parish church along what is now Green Lane so that Christopher and Mary could arrive for services in some style in that coach. Francis Coad a leather worker of St Erth worked on the massive springs of the coach. Thomas Hampton the local blacksmith shod the coach horses and dealt with the metal parts of the vehicle. Not surprisingly, the wheels of the coach gave a great deal of trouble and Frances Hale of Wall, Gwinear, worked on them in 1755.
7. Sea, Sunshine and Sanitation by George Care
(In St Ives). The first and limited clearance order or demolition schedule under Part I of the Act was instituted on May 28 1932 on the Norway Square property and more controversial orders followed. The latter covered six areas in Downalong, one at Hellesvean in the Higher Stennack and another in Dove Street. Owner occupation stood at a relatively low level at this time and only applied in these orders to Back Lane (on the front!). Some properties in the previously overcrowded Pudding Bag Lane (also called Capel Court) were owned by the Council and already vacated, like those at Nos. 1 to 4, which were owned by the Rt Hon Earl Cowley, the wealthy Wellesey family member, who also owned a significant number of other parts of St Ives. He acted through his agents who were a firm of solicitors in Truro. In the view of local historian Cyril Noall, in an article the St Ives Times and Echo, June 25 1982, the Town Council helped to accelerate the decline in the close-knit fishing community; it swept away many substandard dwellings without making any attempt to restore or rehabilitate them, and took advantage of the Act to create, at little expense to itself, the present Harbour Car Park on the site of the old Pudding Bag Lane, Church Place and Norway properties.