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Ephraim RANDELL 1820

Ephraim Randell was the second child in the marriage of Thomas Randell and Mary Ann Gray. He was born 24 April 1820 in Cromer but doesn't appear with his parents in any census. Ephraim Randell was a Master Mariner or colloquially, a Sea Captain. Of all the Randells he is possibly the most well documented. Cromer Museum hold several of his personal effects, including a well constructed wooden model of a sailing ship called 'The Studley'. This was hand made by Ephraim. The display case that holds it also contains his Octant and a book "The Boatswains Mate" inscribed by "Captain Randell" and presented as a gift to an award student in 1889.
Ephraim doesn't appear in the Census of 1841, I assume this is because he was at sea. Several references to a Captain E Randell are recorded around this time in ports on the east coast of America but whether they are one and the same, I have no idea. By 1851 he was recorded with his first wife, Susan, at home in Garden St, Cromer. On the following two occasions 1861 and 1871 Ephraim Randell was at sea. Fortunately, as Master of a vessel, it was his duty to fill out the census forms, in doing so leaving examples of his handwriting.

On the first occasion he was the Master of the 'Mary', a vessel crewed by four men and a cabin boy. On the second occasion, in 1871, he was the Master of 'The Studley' a vessel he seemingly had a long association with. The Studley had a slightly larger crew which included Ephraim's younger brother John as Mate.
Records of 'The Studley' show that it was build in 1829 in Selby. It weighed 110 tons, was 70 feet in length, almost 20 feet across the deck and displaced 11 feet of water. In Lloyds Register it was classed as a Brigantine, which was loosely defined as "a merchant-ship with two masts but not a vessel of a particular construction." Cromer Museum describe the model they hold as a faithful copy of a 'Collier Brig'. These were a class of solid sailing ships used primarily to carry freight up and down the east coast of England. They were constructed with a flat bottom which allowed them to be beached and unloaded on the sands. By far the most common run was from the coal fields of the north east to the south. By all accounts this was dirty, hard and unpleasant work.

Cromer has no harbour, yet considerable trade is carried on and much coal, oil cake, Porter &c., is imported in vessels carrying from sixty to hundred tons. These vessels lie on the beach and at ebb tide carts are drawn along side to unship their cargo: when empty they anchor a little distance from the shore and reload by means of boats, a measure attended with much inconvenience and expense as the carts though drawn by four horses, owing to the steepness of the road up the cliff, can only carry half a ton at a time.
In this manner they continue passing and repassing until the water flows up to the horses bellies when the are obliged to desist until the turn of the tide. The scene is much enliven by the trade from Newcastle, Sunderland and the Baltic.

An extract from "A Norfolk Tour" circa 1825

Of course, The Studley was equally suited to transporting luxuries from the continent and beyond. It's easy to imagine Ephraim and John Randell sipping 'Singapore Slings' in the Far East but all evidence points to the nautical coalman option and the fact that Ephraim was a Director and substantial shareholder of Cromer Coke & Gas, slightly undermines my Exotic East Theory.
Ephraim Randell married twice but produced no children from either union. He married his first wife Susan Burton, 23 December 1845 at St Peter and St Paul's Church, Cromer. Their first home was in Garden Street but by 1861 had moved to Tucker Street. Their final home together was in Brooke Street which ironically was where Susan was first recorded living next door to Ephraim's brother Thomas. Susan Randell died, 2 January 1880, aged 61.
A year later, 25 January 1881, Ephraim married his second wife Honor Love. They continued to live in Brooke Street for a short period but moved to Hans Place and named their home 'Studley House'.
Ephraim Randell died, 7 December 1896, he was aged 76. His passing was widely reported in the local newspapers and the funeral was a substantial affair, held it would seem in the pouring rain. The funeral cortege left Hans Place at 2.30pm and made it's way to the Wesleyan Chapel and then to the Cemetery. The floral wreaths were described as "many and beautiful" and the procession "a considerable following." The mourners included the family and several significant figures, the most notably amongst this group, Henry Broadhurst MP, a prominent Trade Unionist and Member of Parliament. Henry was the Secretary of State for the Home Department in Gladstone's Liberal Government and the first person from a working-class or labour movement background to hold a ministerial post.
An equally significant name identified in the mourners was Robert Laurence Randall who represented the Holt Randall family. His attendance adds to the list of connections between the two seemingly separate families.

ANCESTRY ~ Clement / Thomas / Ephraim

Susan BURTON 1818

In census of 1841 Susan Burton was a resident of Brooke Street, Cromer living next door to Thomas Randell and his wife Judith. Inconveniently she was alone, giving no immediate insight into her original family. However, her husband Ephraim left a Will which bequeathed money to her brothers James and William Burton and her sister Elizabeth. In turn I was able to conclude that Susan born, 12 February 1818 and baptised, 15 March 1818 at St Peter and St Paul Church, Cromer. She was the daughter of George Burton and Elizabeth Storey who married in Cromer, 4 November 1808. George died prior to the 1841 census making it difficult to identify his occupation but the parish register at the time of Susan's birth, records "fathers occupation - Fisherman". Elizabeth Storey was born 1787 in Cromer and died age 85 in early 1872. She was the immediate neighbour of Susan and Ephraim in Tucker Street.
Susan Burton married Ephraim Randell 23 December 1845 and they lived together until her death, Boxing Day 1879, aged 61.
Susan Randell appeared in every census, as 'Mariners wife' born Cromer, but despite 34 years and 2 days as Mrs Randell, I'm unable to offer any significant information about her, except that she left a Will.
Enticingly titled 'The Will of Susan Randell, wife of Ephraim Randell - Sailor Merchant Service', itemised a bequest of £200 seemingly to Ephraim, who given the times was presumably the sole breadwinner. Probate was granted 27 January 1880.

Honor LOVE 1822

Honor Love married Ephraim Randell in 1881, two years after the death of his first wife. Honor, who was marrying for the first time, was 57 when she walked down the aisle with 61 year old Ephraim. The marriage was celebrated, 25 January 1881 at Holy Trinity Church, Runton, Norfolk.
Honor Love was the sister of John Nave Love, who many years before had married Ephraim's sister younger Mary. Honor was born, 19 December 1822 in Runton and christened three days later in the same church she was eventually married in. Honor was daughter of Fisherman, Clement Hammond Love and Rachel Neave.
Prior to marrying Ephraim, Honor Love had spent her entire working life in the employ of Mrs Juliana Calvert, who in 1871 described her occupation as "daughter of Sir Charles Watson". The Calvert Watson families ran two substantial properties, an estate in Buckinghamshire and a town house at 9 Northgate Street, Bury St Edmunds. Honor was recorded at both properties over a thirty year period. It seems likely, that the death of Mrs Calvert in 1877, was instrumental in closing that chapter of Honor's life and engineering her return to Cromer and her new life as Mrs Ephraim Randell.
Honor's first Will of 1901, later revoked, still exists and refers to a 'Marriage Settlement' with Ephraim in 1881. It makes provision for brother-in-law James Randell, nephew Alfred Ernest Vial Abbs, and neice Rachel Elliott. It mentions freehold property in Cromer and is signed Honor Randell.
One of the news articles relating to the funeral of Ephraim, notes a major floral tribute from "Aggie", I think this is most likely to be Honor's personal homage to her husband, using her familiar rather than formal name.
Honor Randell out lived Ephraim by 13 years and died 10 February 1908, aged 86. She was buried in Cromer New Cemetery.

Ephraim had no children from either marriage.

The 1892 Will of Ephraim Randell

In the simplest of terms, Ephraim Randell left cash, shares and property.
He made provision for his wife Honor, to live comfortably during her lifetime by allowing her to continue living in their home and provided an income for her in the form of dividens from his shares.
Following her death he arranged to sell the family home and apartments in Hans Place and divide the proceeds equally between his own brothers - Thomas, Nathaniel, James, John and his sister Mary Love plus his wife's brothers and sisters John Love, George Love, James Love and her sisters, all married, Elizabeth Were, Jemima Abbs, Rachel Moss, Phillis Mayhoe and Leah Chaplin.
All his remaining real estate, personal trust funds and assets with the exception of his holding in Cromer Gas and Coke Company Limited were to be sold and the balance after attending to any costs of sale and upkeep were to be equally divided between his brothers and sister plus on this occasion his first wife's brothers, James and William Burton and their sister Elizabeth Amis.
Ephraim was a Director of Cromer Coke & Gas and held a portfolio of shares with the company. The implication from his Will, is that they represented a large percentage of his wealth but unfortunately no value was assigned to them. He left half his Cromer Gas and Coke portfolio to his nephew and namesake Ephraim Randell and the other half to his niece, Alice Susan Billham.
Alice was for many years the immediate neighbour of Ephraim and his first wife Susan Burton. She was the daughter of Susan's sister Elizabeth and lived seemingly as a companion to Susan's mother.

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