The History of Streatham and the families from the area.

The area being discussed are the suburbs lying south of the River Thames opposite the City and Charing Cross.  From West to East these are the areas included in the Boroughs of Lambeth and Southwark.

Streatham is the birthplace of Frank William Jefferies actually at 135 New Park Road, Streatham Hill.  His ancestry shows that Streatham was the meeting place of two groups of families, the Jefferies from Essex and the Staceys from Kent. Both sets of grandparents came from outside the area; the Jefferies from Essex and the Staceys from NW Kent.

However the earliest contacts for the families from Kent were to the Borough Market, on and then later south of London Bridge.  In his family memoir Edward Titchener describes our ancestor, William Titchener from Wiltshire meeting the carter from Park Gate Farm, Chelsfield at an inn by the Borough Market around 1810.  The carter would have brought up goods for sale such as fruit, eggs, butter and live lambs and probably did several days a week as would other farms in the area. John Stacey records being taken to the Covent Garden Market one day by his uncle Thomas Titchener (who also helped family members move house) around 1862. Chelsfield to the Borough Market is 21.5km or 13 miles in a straight line and took about 6 hours one way apparently for a dray with 2 horses.

We also know that there were strong connections between the Lanes with Newington, an area just south of Borough Market where the oldest two daughters of James Lane and Dinah Streatfield were married in 1823 & 1824 respectively. However none of these families stayed there but went back to Farningham and Eynsford, the home villages of that branch of the Streatfields.

For the basic history of Streatham itself I suggest the article on Wikipedia HERE.  This is a good summary of the area with lists of various items of interest. As the article says it was a village on an old Roman Road from London to the Channel coast near Brighton.  Later it was on the main coach road to Croydon, East Grinstead, Newhaven, Brighton & Lewes.

Streatham became a place for rich Londoners to have a country house in the 1700's and had some famous residents.  In the late 1700's mineral springs at Streatham Wells were exploited and so more wealthy families were attracted including Ratph Trale who built Streatham Park House.  His son, Henry and his wife Hester were close frinds of Samuel Johnson, the lexicographer who spent a lot of time with the Thrales.

The first persons in this family history who moved or lived there were the Carlls, Titcheners, & Bunce's, followed later by the Staceys and Wansburys from Kent.  The earliest records are from the 1840's and before the village started to change from large estates to more urban development enhanced by the arrival of the railways in the 1850s. John Bunce is the earliest and was a grocer in either Clapham or Lambeth in 1839. He married Ann Meekhams, sister of Fanny Meekhams from Shoreham.  Their 3 youngest children, John, Caroline & Ann, drowned on Clapham Common Pond in January 1842 after falling through the ice while skating.  This event is held in the family histories shoing ongoing links between the Meekham sisters and their families.

The move by the Jefferies around 1865 is dicsussed on This Page.

The move of John Stacey to London is discussed later.

Revised 3 July 2021.