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Site last updated on 19th November 2013 - for details click here
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Dedication and Acknowledgements.
This website is dedicated to the memory of Geoffrey Price Gowlland (1908 – 1974), who for more than fifteen years, during war-time and afterwards, devoted literally hundreds of hours of work to compiling the most complete Family Tree of the Gowllands ever assembled.
Some fifteen years ago his daughter Rosemary took up the task of carrying on his work, using the more up-to-date resources of a computerised database (“Family Tree Maker”), and obtaining information from archives, both national and private, and from the internet.
Additional information has been kindly provided by John Hollingsworth Gowlland (1940 - ), Neil Gowlland (1939 - ) and Juliet Phillips (1940 - ).
The website has been put together by Geoffrey’s son John Gowlland.
If you would like any further information regarding anything to do with the Gowlland Family, please contact by e-mail Mrs Rosemary Milton-Thompson (née Gowlland).
If you are seeking magnifiers or inspection mirrors, please e-mail to Gowlland Optical Limited, or visit their website; and if you need medical and surgical instruments, please e-mail to Gowllands Limited, or visit their website.
The Gowlland Family, and in particular the direct descendants of the correspondents included herein, assert their rights to the copyright of this web site and all its contents: unauthorised reproduction by any media is specifically forbidden without the written permission of Rosemary Milton-Thompson and/or John Gowlland.
19th November 2013
Book launch of “My dearest Gennie” took place in Australia. Jo Vink reported “ . . it was a great success. Over eighty people, a lovely afternoon and a great setting at Masalou, Francias Lord’s old home, now part of Monte Sant’Anglo Mercy College”. For the invitation click here and for Captain Beard’s speech click here. Photos to follow.
30th September 2013
Agreement from 1892 added to Henry Gowlland’s biography – click here.
24th September 2013
Henry Gowlland’s obituary published – click here.
27th August 2013
Reference to Henry Gowlland’s 1917 patent cited in 1999 American patent – click here. Burial sites in Canada, Australia and USA for eight Gowllands may be found here -
21st August 2013
A very comprehensive article from 1974 added to the biography of Henry Orford Gowlland – click here.
15th August 2013
In July 2013 Joanna Vink, Jack's great grand-daughter published a fascinating book "My dearest Gennie" based on John Thomas Ewing Gowlland's letters to Genevieve, and his journals, and containing much else of great interest. The book (SBN 978-0-9873463-8-4) may be bought from Jo at firstname.lastname@example.org.
12th August 2013
Incomplete reorganising of biography of Henry Orford Gowlland – click here.
30th July 2013
Further work on the Patents – click here.
25th July 2013
Further work on the Patents. Including the remarkable discovery that Henry Orford Gowlland (b 1865) took out his first patent on a multifocus lens (using the name “Henry Orford”) in 1909, more than one hundred years ago, and thus considerably earlier than had hitherto been thought - click here.
16th July 2013
First steps towards publishing a detailed summary of the Gowlland patents – click here.
14th June 2013
Baptism record of 1823 published for Alice Maud Gowlland, sixth child of Richard Gowlland (1823 – 1863) – click here.
6th June 2013
Some very evocative photos of Captain Peter John Riber Mathieson and his wife Gertrude née Gowlland (Gladys’s half-sister) on board the Antiope have become available through the kindness of The Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney – click here http://www.flickr.com/photos/anmm_thecommons/sets/72157633894557686/.
20th May 2013
Two original birth certificates (below) published, of 1771 for Richard Symons Gowlland, and 1795 for Richard Gowlland. Intriguingly these were passed on to us with the explanation that they were discovered in 1940 in a solicitor’s office which has been destroyed in the Blitz – hence the water damage.
7th April 2013
Further information added to biography of Alfred Gowlland (b 1839) – click here.
4th March 2013
Details provided of the existence of a further Gowlland microscope – click here.
18th January 2013
Further media interest in Geoff Gowlland’s cine films and photographs – click here.
14th January 2013
Newspaper report on his February 1916 divorce added to biography of Edward Lake Gowlland – click here.
2nd January 2013
20th December 2012
18th December 2012
Evidence against John George Blantyre Gowlland in his divorce case published in 21st February 1897 edition of “Lloyds Weekly Newspaper” – click here. Presence of Louisa Mayes Gowlland in the British Orphan Asylum in Slough – click here. Appreciation conveyed to Rosa Gowlland at 1869 meeting of supervisory board of St Mark’s Hospital – click here. Announcement in “The Reading Mercury and Oxford Gazette” of 26th January 1884 of wedding of Rose Grace Gowlland and Douglas Heron Barry – click here.
17th December 2012
Newspaper extract concerning commissioning and installing of a stained glass window dedicated to Peter Yeames Gowlland and his son, by Rosa Gowlland, his widow – click here.. Also a newspaper report of 1842 concerning Richard Gowlland’s capture of a smuggler – here.
16th December 2012
Additional biographic information published for George Castle Gowlland [1804 – 1890] (here), Alfred Gowlland [1839 – c1911] (here) and Arthur Gowlland [1832 – 1904] (here). Also an announcement of the proposed sale in 1807 of the windmill belonging to Richard Symons Gowlland (here)
6th December 2012-12-06
A new correspondent in China has very kindly sent us a Family Tree, and some notes, concentrating on the descendants of George Castle Gowlland (1804 – 1890), and these will be published over the next week or so - for the Tree, click here.
23rd November 2012
Extracts from UK Poll Books and Electoral Registers added to biographies of George Gowlland (1878) (here), Alfred Gowlland (1878) (here), Josiah Gowlland (1808) (here) and Richard Symons Gowlland (1802) (here).
22nd November 2012
Photos of John Thomas Ewing Gowlland’s headstone, as it used to be, and as it is now, added to his biography – click here.
16th November 2012
Link to State Library of Queensland added to biography of John Thomas Ewing Gowlland – click here.
9th November 2012
Additional information published regarding the descendants of the mysterious Richard Symonds Gowlland (click here).
7th April 2012
Note added re transcription error in IGI record of Josiah Gowlland’s baptism – click here.
6th March 2012
Letter of 1938 from Geoffrey Gowlland written from hospital when he was recovering from typhoid – click here.
3rd November 2011
Details of TV programme using some of Geoff Gowlland’s cine film of the Battersea Pleasure Gardens in 1951 – click here.
7th May 2011
Portraits of Henry Orford and Jane Orford née Goffée from about 1865 added to article on the Orfords – click here.
5th April 2011
More complete address information taken from England 1911 Census Summary Books added to certain entries in the 1911 census index.
3rd March 2011
Partial List of Gowllands Limited agentsd and buyers from about 1970-1980 added to notes on Gowllands Limited – click here.
22nd February 2011
William Gowlland Ltd catalogue of 1912 available – click here.
14th January 2011
Poll list of 1705 mentioning a John Gowland of St Clement’s parish, Middlesex (London) added to Loose Ends record of John Gowland’s 1716 apprenticeship – click here.
10th January 2011
Clarification of speculation regarding parentage of Richard Symonds Gowlland – click here.
6th January 2011
Further information regarding the dating and provenance of the Gowlland Clock added to Glossary – click here. Also notes added re John Gowland of Frindbury (b 1702) and his apprenticeship in 1716 to Henry Thornton of Rochester – click here.
18th November 2010
Additional details regarding the final years of George Castle Gowlland added to his biography – click here.
7th November 2010
Surname of bride in 1934 wedding of Dennis Geoffrey Warren Gowlland amended to Wenham.
23rd October 2010
7th October 2010
20th September 2010
1883 portrait of George Gowlland 1838 – 1911 published after restoration – click here.
14th September 2010
In September 2010, in a bound volume entitled "Revenue Cruisers 1671 - 1928", held at the National Archives, Kew, within their Customs records, was found a mention of Richard Gowlland 1795 - 1865 as former commander of the Vigilant - click here.
24th August 2010
Probate of 1898 for Richard Symonds Gowlland published – click here.
5th August 2010
Loose Ends reorganised and re-indexed – here. Also section added dealing with John Gowland and family of Frindsbury, Rochester, North Kent.
15th June 2010
Record published (here) for the conviction in 1831 at Canterbury Assizes of a Henry Gowlland on two counts of larceny. At present we do not believe that this person belongs to our line.
11th June 2010
The search for the seventeenth century forebears of Joseph Gowlland has reluctantly been brought to an end, since all available possibilities seem to have been exhausted. A pity. Should any more clues emerge, the search will, of course, be resumed.
One final possibility, so far with no established connection, which is being borne in mind is this entry:
Indexed transcript of Frindsbury baptisms, marriages and burials 1669-1812 for Gowland and variants:
1702 May 6 John son of John Gowland, Excise man of Frindsbury, and Catherine bapt.
1704 Aug 21 Elizabeth dau of ditto bapt.
1707 Nov 30 Elizabeth dau of John Gowland buried.
1710 May 30 John Gowland buried.
1713 Aug 28 Katherine Gowland, widow, buried.
Frindsbury is a suburb of Strood, which, for administrative purposes, is now amalgamated with Rochester. The above five entries are apparently the only Gowland mentions in the records of The Medway Studies Centre (Strood) between 1669 and 1812, but I shall double-check this when possible.
The IGI shows a marriage on 14th January 1700 (two years before the first of the two births recorded above) at St Nicholas, Rochester, between John Gowland and Catherine Harriett. This also needs investigation.
The main interest is the profession of “Exciseman”. They would move from port to port; and Joseph’s family, of course, was established in Dover in the 1730s. Probably nothing significant, but worth noting . . . .
30th April 2010
Hypertext link (here) added to Glossary section regarding Freemen of Canterbury for University of Berkeley’s on-line transcription of J M Cowper’s “The roll of the freemen of the city of Canterbury from A.D. 1392-to 1800". Also reference (here) from 1351 to “John Goland” of the manor of Wolford, co. Warwick, from “Grantees etc of Office 1350 – 1354”, from the Patent Rolls (the Chancery enrolments of royal letters patent) from the reign of Edward III.
26th April 2010
Publishing of page from parochial register of St Mary the Virgin, Dover, listing Dissenters, and naming nine births to Sampson and Susanna Pierce (née Reading) between 1713 and 1730 – here.
16th April 2010
Settlement Certificate IN for Joseph Gowland and family added to Loose Ends – click here. Ten baptism entries from Eyethorne Chapel for children from several Peirce families added to notes on Baptists – here. Did they move en masse to a different chapel in 1805?
7th April 2010
Edward Lake Gowlland’s entry in the 1926 “Directory of Medical Practitioners in the Provinces” published – click here. 1934 entry in Army List added to Geoffrey Cathcart Gowlland’s biography – click here.
2nd April 2010
1675 Notice of Intended Bridegroom (Marriage Licence Application) for Archdeaconry of Lewes (East Sussex) published in name of Robert Gowland of Crowhurst – click here. Note that Crowhurst is about three miles north-west of Hastings, and about seven miles south-west of Udimore and Brede. Geoffrey Cathcart Gowlland’s entry in the Fettes School record for 1896 entrants published – click here.
30th March 2010
Old Bailey record from 1845 published showing conviction for larceny of Thomas Gowlland (born c1821), son of Josiah Gowlland – click here.
28th March 2010
Extract from Post Office Commercial and Professional Directory of 1856 published mentioning James West Gowlland and Peter Yeames Gowlland – click here. Also Merchant Taylors’ School register from 1875 mentioning Peter Yeames Gowlland – click here. And listing of Customs’ Establishment at London Docks in 1858 mentioning Richard Gowlland – click here.
27th March 2010
Further information regarding the Settlement Certificate in the name of Joseph Theophilus Gowland and family added to the notes about him in “Loose Ends” - click here. Additional records added to Glossary item on Polls – click here.
26th March 2010
New portrait of George Gowlland (1838 – 1911) published – click here. This is the painting which Melissa Gowlland, in a letter to Geoff Gowlland dated 8th January 1942, so memorably described as “I have an oil and water colour of our grandfather George you might care to view, looking like the King of the Cannibals – sports an outsize in black whiskers and beard – very fierce all together” and, in a letter dated 5th April 1942, “It belonged to Margaret [George’s oldest daughter, born 1860], and Charlie [Charles Septimus, the youngest child, born 1878] being a younger brother could hardly refuse to let me have it when she died”.
18th March 2010
Link to The Surman Index Online of Congregational ministers (here) added to notes on James Fenn - note there is no reference to Stephen Gowlland.
14th March 2010
Details added of three marriages and twenty-nine (!) children of Thomas Sankey (b 1738), father of Sarah Sankey (b 1771), wife of Richard Symons Gowlland (b 1770), married 1792 – click here and here. Also details of Sarah’s brother’s having organised a collection for the families of survivors of the Battle of the Nile in 1798 – here.
8th March 2010
1871 census record published for Louisa Mary Yeames Bouverie – click here.
3rd March 2010
Settlement record for 1821 in Edmonton published for Josiah Gowlland – here.
23rd February 2010
Second Letter of Recommendation from James West Gowlland published – here.
19th February 201
Note of Letter of Reference for a police recruit provided by James West Gowlland added to his biography – click here.
16th February 2010
Additional biographical details added for Eliza Jane Gowlland (b 1847) – click here.
12th February 2010
9th February 2010
1716 Apprenticeship record published (here and here) for John Gowland, “son of John Gowland of Rochester, Gent., dec” to Henry Thornton, Citizen [?] and Clock Maker”. The Thorntons are linked to the known Gowllands from Canterbury and Dover by virtue of (a) Mary Thornton witnessing a birth of one of the children of Stephen Gowlland (b1747), (b) Peggy/Margaret Thornton marrying Josiah Gowlland in 1807, and (c) Elizabeth Thornton’s 1832 burial in the Countess of Huntingdon’s Connexion chapel in Dover (one of the Baptist places of worshhip used by early Gowllands). This is the first time we have established a connection, albeit tenuous, between the known South Kent Gowl(l)ands and the far less well established North Kent Gowlands.
As to the deceased father mentioned above, there is a record of a marriage on 14th January 1700 between John Gowland and Catherine Harnett at St Nicholas, Rochester. The apprentice could have been a child of this marriage, born two years after the wedding. Regrettably there is no trace of the death of a John Gowland between 1702 and 1716.
More investigation is needed . . . . .
Various other apprenticeship records published – click here.
7th February 2010
Entries added to the Glossary in respect of:
a) Privy Council Extracts from reign of Edward VI - click here.
b) Licences for marriages in southern England 1632 – 1714 - click here
c) Freemen of Canterbury - click here
5th February 2010
Licence application found (click here and here) for Robert Gowland and Elizabeth Lucke, both of Crowhurst, East Sussex, dated 10th July 1675. The marriage took place five days later at All Saints, Hastings (here): note variations in both names.
4th February 2010
Record (click here) published of the 1837 imprisonment for six weeks of William Gowland, aged twenty, convicted of larceny at Canterbury Assizes. This might be the fifth child and third son of Josiah Gowlland and Peggy Thornton, or, less probably, the sixth child and fourth son of Stephen Gowlland and Jane West: both Josiah and Stephen originally came from Canterbury, although both left there as their families grew. Equally, it is more than likely that this William Gowland is nothing to do with our line.
2nd February 2010
Details of Baltic Medal awarded to John Thomas Ewing Gowlland in 1854 added to his biography – click here. Details of 1789 apprenticeship of Stephen Gowlland to John Quested added to his biography – click here.
21st January 2010
Latest version of Gowlland Family Tree published – click here. It now runs to eighteen closely-printed A4 pages, and the complete Tree totals 927 individuals. If anyone would like a copy of the fil as a GEDCOM, please email accordingly to john gowlland (email@example.com).
16th January 2010
Photos of two oil paintings signed by Stephen Leversha Gowlland appended to his correspondence with Geoff Gowlland – click here.
15th January 2010
Note included in biography of Josiah Gowlland re Canterbury freehold of Lazarus Thornton – click here.
7th January 2010
A possible third candidate identified for the convicted Richard Gowlland in 1870 – click here. Comment added regarding the 1827 baptism of Charles Gowlland, son of Josiah, with address shown as “The Workhouse, Hendon” – click here. Obituary from 1942 for Edward Lake Gowlland added to his biography – click here.
23rd November 2009
BMD Certificates published over past ten days added to the respective indices.
18th November 2009
16th November 2009
Also published (here) is a baptism record from St Peter, Hammersmith, in the name of “Ada Gowlland, daughter of Frederick and Anne, residence 15 William Street, born August 28th 1882, father’s occupation bootmaker [?]”; but this record should be treated with some scepticism as there is no known Frederick Gowlland and the transcription of the badly written surname is uncertain.
14th November 2009
Burial record published for Leonard Lake Gowlland and Richard Sankey Gowlland – here. Burial record from Saint Pancras Old Church, Camden, London, of Emma Gowland [sic] aged two days, possibly a hitherto unknown child of Charles Gowlland (b1861) – here.
13th November 2009
Marriage record from 1881 published for Rebecca Gowlland (click here). Also for Susannah Gowlland (click here). Record of Stephen Gowlland’s religious interests in 1775 – here. Record of 1936 burial of Mabel Agnes Blanche Louise Gowlland – click here.
12th November 2009
1st November 2009
Baptism certificate for Eliza Jane Gowlland, daughter of Richard “coachpainter” Gowlland, published – click here.
30th October 2009
1882 baptism certificate for George Gowlland (1867 – 1927) added to his biography (here). 1881 census entry for Peter Yeames Gowlland added to his biography (here), and three baptism certificates added, 1825 (himself), 1861 (his daughter) and 1863 (his son) – click here..
28th October 2009
Section dealing with media interest in Geoff Gowlland’s cine films rewritten – click here. Baptism records published for Peter Yeames Gowlland (here), Louisa Mary Yeames Gowlland (here) and Elizabeth Lyon Gowlland (here).
25th October 2009
Puzzling presence of James West Gowlland at the 1832 wedding of so-far unplaced Jane Gowlland discussed – click here. And publishing of record of calling of banns of the mysterious Richard Symonds Gowlland in 1847 – here.
24th October 2009
Birth certificate and baptism certificate published for Richard Gowlland born 1877 – click here.
23rd October 2009
1836 marriage record found for Ann Gowlland’s marriage to William Fisher, as previously included in “Loose Ends” – click here.
20th October 2009
Baptism certificate from St Mary’s, Hendon, Barnet, Middlesex, dated 1823, published for six children of Josiah and Peggy/Margaret Gowlland - click here.
14th October 2009
Baptism record from St Mary’s, Hendon, Barnet, published for Charles Gowlland, the last child of Josiah and Peggy/Margaret – click here. Why was the family of a schoolmaster in the Workhouse?
Original record of marriage of Richard Symonds Gowlland and Louisa Newell from St Matthew’s, Bethnal Greem published, showing the clerk had trouble with the spelling of the word “Mathematical” – click here.
13th October 2009
12th October 2009
Baptism certificate from St Mary Magdalene, Greenwich, published for twin girls allegedly fathered in 1864 by John Thomas Ewing Gowlland – click here.
7th October 2009
Map showing location of Eyethorne Baptist Chapel added to biography of Stephen Gowlland (1747 – 1802) – click here.
2nd October 2009
Further information concerning Stephen Gowland’s link to the Particular Baptists added to his biography – click here.
25th September 2009
21st September 2009
17th September 2009
Some notes on John Sutton, his apprentice-master, added to biography of Joseph Gowlland – click here.
15th September 2009
Notes on an apparent branch in Paris in 1922 added to information on Gowllands Limited – click here.
10th September 2009
Updated Family Tree published as PDF file – click here.
2nd September 2009
Plan of Newcastle, Queensland, Australia, from 1866, the work of John Thomas Ewing Gowlland, added to his biography – click here.
13th August 2009
Details of the long-lost portrait of Peter Yeames Gowlland added to the correspondence between Geoff Gowlland and A Yakovleff – click here.
7th August 2009
Updated Family Tree published as PDF file – click here.
30th July 2009
Maple and Go(u)lder entries in the list of participants in the 1641 Protestation added to the Glossary – click here – and additional Maple details added to the biography of Joseph Gowlland (b c1714) – click here.
24th July 2009
A list of Maple baptisms for the 16th - 18th centuries, most of them in Bridge (a village a short distance from Canterbury, on the road to Dover), has been added to the Glossary and to Joseph Gowlland’s biography - click here.
21st July 2009
More details added regarding antecedents of Peggy Thornton, wife of Josiah Gowlland – click here.
17th April 2009
Some notes added on Goulder and Golder - here.
11th July 2009
More information on Baptists added – click here.
1st July 2009
Further information, resulting from a visit to East Kent Archives in Dover, added regarding Gowlland Baptist connections, in particular extracts from the Register Book for Dover Baptist Church of St Mary – here.
25th June 2009
23rd June 2009
More information published regarding James Fenn – click here.
22nd June 2009
Joseph Theophilus Gowland added to “Loose Ends” – click here.
12th June 2009
Additional information regarding HMS “Plumper” and HMS “Hecate” added to biography of John Thomas Ewing Gowlland – click here.
8th June 2009
Report on Jack Gowlland’s return after a two-month surveying voyage on HMS “Edith” found in “The Brisbane Courier” for 16th December 1868 - the link is http://ndpbeta.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/1314987
Mention in “Nature” - http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v119/n2993/abs/119389a0.html - of an experiment in the 1920s carried out by “Mr G Gowlland” (thought to be George Gowlland 1867 – 1927) in collaboration with a Mr L G Vedy, on the rotation of bodies with dielectric surfaces in electrostatic fields. If indeed he had shown this experiment at The Physical Society (presumably the American one) it must have been within a few months of his death.
2nd June 2009
Cheriton in Kent identified as location of Stephen Gowlland’s mill in 1769 prior to his move to Canterbury the following year (click here) – more information will be found on this link taken from “Kent Dissenting Ministers’ Declarations 1689 – 1836” by Gillian Rickard B.A. Dip.Loc.Hist [ISBN 0-9521828-3-1]. Available from her at GRKent@aol.com.