Emily Martha Punch (b 1838)

parents Thomas Punch & Ann Brown

born 25 October 1838, Limehouse, London, England[1]
baptised 26 October 1838, St Anne's Church of England, Limehouse, London, England[1]

Emily Martha Punch was baptised on 26 October 1826 at St Anne's Church of England, Limehouse.

From St Anne's, Limehouse C of E Parish Register[1]
Growing Up

Ref 2 has Emily's parents, Thomas and Ann and their young family, living in Tower Hamlets, London, Parish of St Dunstan, Stepney in 1841.  

With them are their children:- (Thomas) James (16 yrs), John (14 yrs), Sarah (12 yrs), William (10 yrs), Charles (8 yrs), Eliza (6 yrs), Louisa (4 yrs), Emily Martha (2 yrs) and Maria (1 yr).

Google Maps - Stepney, Limehouse, Poplar Locations

From the 1841 UK Census

In 1851, the Punch family was living at 1 Ratcliff Street, Parish of St Anne's, Limehouse.  Thomas worked as a Shipwright.  Ann was noted as a Storekeeper, General Goods[3].  The children mentioned now are:- Sarah (22 yrs), Charles (18 yrs), Eliza (16 yrs), Emily Martha (12 yrs), Maria (10 yrs), Helena (8 yrs) and Andrew (6 yrs).   That's a total of 12 children that have been found.

From the 1851 UK Census

Robert Martin

Robert was born in Denbury, Devon and his father was Thomas Martin and he was a Carpenter.

Robert Martin had been married before and had 4 children with Sara ? -- Albert, Arthur, Emily and Elizabeth. 

Marriage to Robert Martin
Emily married Robert Martin on 18 July 1869 at St John's Church of England, Stepney, London[1].  She was 31 years old. 

from St John's parish register[1]

In 1871 the family lived in The Village, Charlton, Kent (at that time, now part of Greater London).  With Robert and his children from his first marriage are Emily Martha and her daughter, Louise, only 6 months old[4].  

Robert is a clever guy and owns his own Mechanical Toolmaking business which employs 6 men and 7 boys.

from 1871 UK Census

In 1881, the family still lived in The Village in Charlton.  Now there are two more children, Robert (7 years) and Ida (2 years)[5].  Robert's business had grown and he employed 12 men and 5 boys.  It appears that the family was quite well off since they employed 4 live-in domestic servants.  The main manufacturing business is making Horse Clippers.  One of Robert's sons from his first marriage, Arthur, lives with them and has learned the trade of Toolmaking from his father.

from 1881 UK Census

In 1891, Robert is still running his toolmaking business and 2 domestic servants remain.  Robert is 68 years old and Emily Martha is 56 so they must be looking towards a comfortable retirement.  Louise, Robert and Ida are still at home[6].

from 1891 UK Census

They still lived at 1 The Village, Charlton in 1901.  Robert's older children are gone, young Robert has left but Louise and Ida are still at home.  They have 2 servants but also 3 boarders - presumably to fill all the bedrooms[7].

from 1901 UK Census

Emily Martha and Robert Martin probably died sometime before 1911 but no death entries have been located.

Charlton is in the south-east London metro area, not very far from Emily Martha's birthplace of Limehouse (near Poplar).
Images from Google Maps

Sally Jenkinson has produced a beautiful manuscript which describes The Village in Charlton from a late 1800s perspective.  I hope she will not mind if I use some extracts which are relevant to Emily Martha and Robert Martin[9].

Next to the church stands Robert Martin's house.  In 1881 it was newly built and Mr. Martin has recently moved in with his wife, five children, two servants and two nurses to look after the children.  He was born in Devon but has done well for himself since coming to Charlton.  Ten years before this he was living in one of the small cottages in the village but his toolmaking and mechanical horseclipping business was already thriving, for he employed five men and seven boys even then.  By this time he was employing thirteen men and five boys with a workshop behind the house.  Three old cottages next to the church have been pulled down to make way for his new house with its large front door and wrought iron weather vane to proclaim his success.  Inside it would probably have had a bathroom which was still a rarity in those days and the ground floor would have been lit by gas-light.  A gas-fitter had been living in the village as far back as 1851 and old postcards show the gas-lit lamposts along the street.  Go down by the side of the R.A.C.S. supermarket and walk along Fletching Road so that you can see the back of his house with its tall four-storey tower which must still have a fantastic view.

Google Maps

Emily and Robert's house is No 1
"A" is St Luke's Church

Also, I have found a letter from Nick Martin to the Editor of the Greenwich Industrial History Society, Vol 5, Issue 4, July 2002, in which he seeks further information regarding the Martin family and he includes some additional interesting information about the children of Robert Martin's first marriage.  

Nick - if you are out there - please contact me!


I have just come across your website and your email address. I wonder if you have any information on the following.

I am trying to trace details of my great-great-grandfather's company "Martin & Co".  It was started by Robert Martin with his two sons Alfred and Albert.  Albert left it to his son Ernest, in 1932.

They were manufacturers of Horse Hair clippers, later becoming hairdresser's clippers, from about 1875 until at least 1927.  Robert Martin lived at No 1, The Village, Old Charlton, Woolwich from 1881 until 1906 and with his sons, had several business addresses over the years, including:

1861 - 4 Upper Market Street, Woolwich

1873 - Old Charlton, Kent

1881 - 15 Rectory Place, Woolwich, Kent

1890 - Charles St, Plumstead, Kent (from Patents)

1891-1900 - 229 Burrage Road, Plumstead, Kent

1893 - North Kent Works, Charles Street, Plumstead, Kent (from Patents)

1910-1928 - 4 Nightingale Place, Woolwich Common, Woolwich (business address? - printed on hair clipper sales pamphlet and from patents)

1913 - Owned factory and adjacent land in Woolwich Dockyard. Owned freehold property, address 9, Gildersome Street, Woolwich (from Will)

  Albert Martin (born ca 1853, Woolwich, Kent) married Charlotte and had (at least one child), Ernest W Martin -- probably the Ernest referred to in Nick Martin's letter[10].

Children of Emily Martha Punch and Robert Martin

These children were probably all born at home at 1 The Village, Charlton.

1.  Louise Martin was born ca 1870 in Charlton, Kent.  In 1911, she was visiting with a friend, Lena Draper at 26 Leinster Avenue, Mortlake[8].  Lena  Draper was a visitor at the Martin's house on the night of the 1901 Census 10 years earlier[7].  It appears that Louise never married.  Nothing more is known.

2.  Robert Martin was born ca 1874 in Charlton, Kent.  Nothing more is known.

3.  Ida Martin was born ca 1879 in Charlton, Kent.  Nothing more is known.

London Docklands ca 1904

St Anne's, Limehouse

  1. Ancestry Parish Records - www.ancestry.com
  2. 1841 UK Census, HO/107/701
  3. 1851 UK Census, HO/107/1551
  4. 1871 UK Census, RG 10 / 774 page 6
  5. 1881 UK Census, RG 11 / 740 page 30
  6. 1891 UK Census, RG 12 / 527 page 21
  7. 1901 UK Census RG 13 / 563 pages 63 & 64
  8. 1911 UK Census
  9. "The Village Old Charlton", A Local History Booklet by Sally Jenkinson.  Approx 1984.  Designed and produced at the Gordon Teachers' Centre in conjunction with Greenwich Local History Library.
  10. Mullan Family Tree - www.ancestry.com - Public Trees