Frederick Collins of Bristol (1866-19?) “makes very intelligible signs and gives proof of great thought and memory”
By H Dominic W Stiles, on 13 March 2020
I came across a photostat – I choose that word because of the age of the copy – of a school entry record for Frederick Collins (1866-?), when he went into the Bristol District Institution. The Institution was founded in 1841, and closed in 1907. It moved from Park Row, the address on the form, in 1874, so this form dates from prior to that. The form seems incomplete – unless we suppose it to be a copy?
Frederick and his sister, Charlotte Elizabeth Collins (1871-?), were both born deaf. They both attended the Bristol Institution and we can see them both there in the 1871 census. Frederick became a French Polisher, and married a Deaf lady, Jessie Miller (18-?), daughter of a cab inspector, and they had three surviving children in 1911.
IN all cases of application for Admission into this Institution, Answers are to be made in writing to the following Questions ; to which must be subjoined the attestations of a Medical Practitioner, the Minister of the Parish, or two credible witnesses. This Paper is then to be returned to the Honorary Secretary for the inspection of the Committee ; and should it appear that the Child is a proper object, its name will be inserted in the list of approved Applicants.
1. What is the name of the Child ? Frederick Collins.
2. When was the child born ? Filton, Nr Bristol, Born May 29th, 1866.
3. What is the name and occupation of its parents ? John & Elizabeth Collins, Farmer.
4. Where do they reside ? Filton, Nr. Bristol.
5. Was the child born Deaf, or has become so in consequence of disease ? If, so, state at what age, and by what disease ? Born Deaf.
6. Do the other senses seem perfect ? Yes, in every particular.
7. Has the child ever been affected with idiotcy, or by fits, or with any nervous complaint, and is it free from infectious disorder ? Never has been in any way affected and is perfectly free from infectious disorder.
8. Has the child had the small-pox, or been vaccinated ? And, if so, when ? Has been vaccinated on the 26th of Augt 1866.
9. Is the child generally, healthy ? Yes.
10. Has the child any personal defect or deformity ? No.
11. Can the child dress and wait on itself, and are its personal habits cleanly ? Can dress himself and is particularly cleanly in his habits.
12. How many brothers and sisters has the child ? Three brothers & two sisters.
13. Are any others of the family Deaf and Dumb ? Yes, one. A sister.
14. Were the parents related ‘before marriage’? If so, in what manner ? First Cousins.
15. Does the child make intelligible signs, and give proofs of thought and memory ? Yes makes very intelligible signs and gives proof of great thought and memory.
16. What instruction has the child received, and can he or she form letters ?
17. State the name and address of some respectable Householder or Parish Officers willing to give security for the payment of such sum, for the board of the child (if admitted) as the Committee shall appoint, ( £10 ) and for the fulfilment of the other condition contained in the Extracts from Rules and By-Laws ?
CERTIFICATE OF MEDICAL PRACTITIONER
I, the undersigned, do hereby certify, that the Answers to the foregoing Questions, referring above named Child are true. Witness my hand this day of …… 18….
ATTESTATION OF FRIENDS AND MINISTER, OR TWO CREDIBLE WITNESSES. We, the undersigned, do hereby certify, that the Answers to the foregoing Questions are made under our personal knowledge and are true. Witness our hands this day of …… 18 …….
As we see, Charlotte and Frederick’s parents were cousins so probably had inherited hearing loss. Jessie, Frederick’s wife, was however deaf through illness aged two.
In 1911 Charlotte was living with her unmarried brother and sister at 11 Fairlawns Avenue, Filton, working as an upholstress. Clearly the Bristol Institution equipped the siblings with the skills to have a job with an income that they could live on. I have not had time to discover what became of these three Deaf people in later life.
More ordinary people again! Let us celebrate ordinary lives as well as famous lives.
1871 Census – Class: RG10; Piece: 2573; Folio: 60; Page: 12; GSU roll: 835271
1881 Census – Class: RG11; Piece: 2476; Folio: 119; Page: 19; GSU roll: 1341596
1891 Census – Class: RG12; Piece: 1973; Folio: 126; Page: 29; GSU roll: 6097083
1901 Census – Class: RG13; Piece: 2360; Folio: 74; Page: 41
1911 Census – Class: RG14; Piece: 15091; Schedule Number: 262
Below I give the pupil list for the 1871 census in the Bristol Institution. I find it very interesting that there are so many pupils for whom their birthplaces were unknown – were they foundlings, illegitimate? I have of course not sufficient time to research that…!
|Fanny||Warren||Servant||17||1864||Female||General Serv Domestic||Frampton Cottrell||Gloucestershire|
|Elizabeth||Alsop||Servant||23||1858||Female||General Serv Domestic||Iron Acton||Gloucestershire|
|Elizabeth||Stowell||Servant||23||1858||Female||Domestic Serv Kitchenmaid||Gilivern||Breconshire|
|Phoebe A.||Brown||Inmate||10||1871||Female||Scholar||Bream Westside||Gloucestershire|
|Joshua||Williams||Inmate||12||1869||Male||Scholar||Westbury On Trym||Gloucestershire|
This was the first blog for several weeks – I confess to being rather disillusioned by things, and overwhelmed by events here.