Why did my relatives end up in jail?

1.The Paull story begins with a fluid plan – where ideas are gathered to highlight actions and situations that will hook the reader – These include the pain of reflection. Anguish. Despair. Questions. How the actions of one person affect another…

2. Conflict – William (Bill’s) attitudes which affect the family.

3. Disaster – the beer flood – what this foretells

Plan, imagine and compose, keeping ideas fresh, based on the conclusion


1.Reaction – work challenges, poverty, anger, anguish, and how the male protagonist deals with hard situations. What about his wife?

2. Dilemma – what to do? Who pushes for change. And why?

3. Decision – The only way forward is… but is this possible? What follows is from actual situations within my family, to be brought to life as if the reader is right there in the midst of every situation.

With these ideas in my mind, I begin –

Firstly, who was the patriarch who first went to jail in the late 1700’s?

Where did his story begin? Is there a genetic disposition, a weakness in the menfolk of the family line as history is to repeat over the centuries …..

The Paulls of Stanwell Moor

It was in the English town of Staines that John Paull was born. It is presumed he became a Mason; Master Bricklayer and eventually handed these skills onto his sons.

In 1783 John married Scottish lass, Jane Muirhead in the spring of 1783 at St Mary, Ealing, Middlesex.

They were married by bands by a Charles Sturges, vicar, and both made their mark, as they were illiterate. The witnesses were a Daniel Ginger and Richard Attlee.

Together they had several children, the first being William, born in 1784. The youngest being Joseph born in a cold winter February in 1803. Our focus will be on this child – Joseph.

Joseph was a bricklayer, stone mason and met and married a Caroline Miles in autumn of 1828 at St Nicholas Church, Guildford, Surrey, England.

One daughter, Jane, and six sons were born between 1830 and 1847 in the county. They lived at Bates Cottage, upper Mill Haven, on the Stanwell Moor, and later at the Paull’s Cottages, Stanwell Moor.

In 1871 Joseph lived at the Staines Union Workhouse, where the employees are called inmates and lived on the premises. Caroline was listed as an annuitant. Joseph died at the workhouse in 1877

On the other hand, at least one of the Stanwell Paull’s, John, became a master builder with 16 employees and another. A warrant was issued by the Board of Governors for the apprehension of John Paull of Stanwell for the desertion of his wife and six children, whereby they became chargeable to the Union. John had several court appearances for neglecting to send his children to school.

Another son, Richard, is said to have worked on the construction of Holloway College at Ethan and, on that occasion of its opening by Queen Victoria in 1888, being given the honour of presenting Her Majesty with a silver trowel.

Also, there was William; also a bricklayer, who married Martha Sara. William’s claim to fame came after emigrating to New Zealand. His name appeared in commercial and social newspapers; first in a report reporting the death of his young son after contracting an illness on the ship The Charlotte Gladstone, while sailing to the new country.

Later his behaviour was reported in court reports and the socially scandalous newspaper – The Truth. Jail time followed. Also financial success. Quite the business man, I believe, but as far as being a loving husband – this I doubt. It is his story we are to follow. And that of his wife, Martha Sara.

So, what is it with these male Paull men? Chauvinism? Selfishness? Pride? Fun lovers?

Now, I am ready to make the characters come alive. Their emotions will become yours if you have empathy. You may become angry when you are aware of the heartless mannerisms, cold hearted behaviours. Sympathy and concern will come from the empathetic reader, and ‘served her right’ from the reader without.

The most important factor I need to keep in mind, is to keep the story moving forward, show the events and places rather than telling.

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Published by Glennis Browne (Annie Browne)

New Zealand author, blogging and researcheing family trees. I write fiction ally about historical families, focusing on the challenges, social issues and indiscretions that caused major disruptions in ancestors lives. My aim is to create realistic reality by bringing greater understanding to our generation. Follow The Fortune Seekers Series of novels- Dan and Charlotte and Power and Authority. Books 3 and 4 underway. I also write as Annie Browne.

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