Diss

Thomas Clarke: Brought to Life by Bells

On Monday evening last the Diss Company of Change Ringers rang on the bells of the Parish Church …. with the bells half muffled, as a last tribute of respect to the memory of Thomas Clarke…”

About Thomas Clarke

Thomas Clarke was born 1825 in the small rural English village of Palgrave, Suffolk. Census records revealed that Thomas worked as an agricultural labourer, married late in life, and had no children. The newspaper report of his death in 1902 was more informative, and helps bring Thomas to life.

According to his death notice, Thomas had been a member of the change bell ringers’ company of nearby Diss, Norfolk, since his youth.

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John Nunn was one of my great-great-great-grandfathers. He was called to a settlement examination in Diss, Norfolk, England on 13 January 1798 before John Frere, Justice of the Peace. He was living in Diss at the time, and must have found himself in financial need, otherwise there would likely not have been an inquiry into his place of settlement.

Thanks to John Frere, the examination record is a small trove of genealogically useful information. He starts by telling us that John Nunn was a linen weaver. The settlement examination record also states that John was 21 years of age and up, and that he was born in Palgrave, Suffolk.

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