Descendants of John Burgar (1742-1797)

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Second Generation

 John Burgar (1787-1816) - son of John Burgar (1742-1797)

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John Burgar28  was born on 11 May 1787 in Bishopsgate, London.51 He was baptized on 3 Jun 1787 in St Botolphs, Bishopsgate, London.51  The following is a summary of the entry in the Baptism Register:

John, born 11th May 1787, son of John and Catherine Burgar, was baptised on 3rd June 1787.

He died of yellow fever on 1 Aug 1816 at Kingston Jamaica.2

Between 1807 and 1813 he was a Shoemaker, Minister.2,72,73
Between 1813 and 1816 he was a Methodist Minister.2

As we shall see, John Jr. eventually became a Methodist Minister, so in order to distinguish him from the many others with the name John Burgar he will be known as John the Methodist (somewhat like John the Baptist of Bible fame).

One of the first records that we found concerning John is an entry in the Register of Parish apprentices for St Leonards, where he removes his brother, Joseph, from the workhouse.

28th September 1809, Joseph Burgar male age 15 years 9 months Orphan
is bound to his brother John Burgar Boot and Shoe Maker No 26 Land of Promise in the Parish of St. Leonards until he is 21 years at a fee of £4-2-0.

Joseph was born on the 25th January 1794 so in September 1809 he would have been 15 years 8 months, which agrees almost exactly with Joseph's date of birth in the Parish register.

From this we know that John the Methodist was a Boot and Shoemaker.

We know quite a lot about John because he was later a Methodist Minister and there is a long Biography about him in two articles in the Methodist Magazine.  This biography is based on the diary that John kept. Although the diary was mainly to do with his spiritual and religious life it also includes details about his early family life.

See excerpt taken directly from the biography.

In 1809 He met Mary Gough at the church and they were married on 16 Apr 1809 in St Dunstans, Stepney, London.56 The following is a summary of the entry in the Marriage Register:

John Burgar, bachelor of Mile End Old Town and Mary Gough of Mile End Old Town and both of this Parish were married by Banns on 16th April 1809 at St Dunstans Stepney, by G. Nathan, Rector. Both John and Mary signed the register. The witnesses were John Cresswell? , Charles Roberts and J.C. Roberts.

In his diaries John talked often about the conflict of interests between his business and his religion. We have found an item to this effect independent of his diary. In the Minutes of committee of the Methodist Sunday school Society for 3rd July 1809 there is an entry

The following persons were considered as withdrawn according to the Rule having been absent three weeks: …. John Burgar……..{ + other names )

This was soon after he married so perhaps the pressure at home and at work prevented him from going to the meetings.

John and Mary had their first child, Mary, in 1814.

Mary, born 14th April 1814, daughter of John and Mary Burgar, Shoemaker, of 76 Tooley Street, was baptised on the 24th April 1814 at St Olaves Bermonsey.

Despite all his problems, John was eventually ordained a Methodist Minister in October 1814. Soon after, on the 1st December 1814, he and his family set sail for Jamaica. After much bad weather and sea sickness they arrived on February 11th at Kingston, Jamaica.

Although he suffered from poor health most of the time, he seems to have worked unstintingly. He increased the number of congregation from 625 to 952, and started 2 new churches on the island. However his diary continually records that he had great trouble with doubts about his vocation. The exact reason is unclear. After an attack of yellow fever he died a week later on the 1st August 1816, just 2 years after reaching Jamaica. As a unique tribute to him the Parish Vestry voted a gift of £100.00 to his widow.

His son John Wesley Burgar was born 2 months later and baptised at the Methodist Chapel in Kingston. ( see details on John Wesley Burgar below).

See Tree for Descendants of John Burgar and Mary Gough.

John Burgar and Mary Gough had the following children:



Mary Burgar was born on 18 Apr 1814 in 76 Tooley St Bermondsey.72 She was baptized on 24 Apr 1814 in St Olaves, Southwark, London.72

Mary, born 14th April 1814, daughter of John and Mary Burgar, Shoemaker, of 76 Tooley Street, was baptised on the 24th April 1814 at St Olaves Bermonsey. John is recorded as being a shoemaker.

She died in 1835 at 24 Banner Sq Finsbury.31 She was buried on 18 Jul 1835 in City Rd. Methodist Finsbury.31 The following is a summary of the entry in the Burial Register:

City Road Chapel Burials: Mary Burgar, age 22 years, of 24 Banner Square, was buried on the 18th July 1835, Burial Number 4451, Undertaker West £1.1.0, 24 Banner Square.

Mary Burgar and the undertaker, West, are both living at 24, Banner Square. It is possible that the undertaker was maybe her stepfather, Andrew Wood West, or perhaps John West, who appears in the 1841 Census as an Undertaker.

See 1841 Census for John West



John Wesley Burgar.

Mary Gough (daughter of John Gough and Lydia ) was born on 18 Nov 1788 in Mile End Old Town, Stepney, London.56 She was baptized on 7 Dec 1788 in St Dunstans, Stepney, London.56 The following is a summary of the entry in the Baptism Register

Mary, born 18th November 1788, daughter of John Gough, a weaver, and Lydia Gough, was baptised on 7th December 1788 at St Dunstan Stepney.

She probably died in 1866 assuming that the following reference applies to her.  It needs to be checked. Civil Registration reference is Mar 1866, vol 1c, p 96, Shoreditch.  Aged 77 years.

After the death of her husband John Burgar in Jamaica, Mary (Gough) Burgar then returned to England with her 2 children to start a new life for herself. She remarried:

Mary Burgar, widow and Andrew Wood West, bachelor, both of this Parish were married on the 20th June 1822 at St Giles Cripplegate . Both signed the Register. The witnesses were Mary Barrat, Charlotte Crossfell and Elizabeth Yelf,

All of the witnesses turn up in later Wesleyan Methodist Registers.  Charlotte Crossfell is really Charlotte Cressall who is the sister of Mary Gough.  She married Thomas Cressall in about 1810.

There is a portrait of Mary (Gough-Burgar) West and her husband Andrew Wood West.  The photocopies photos shown below were provided by Felicity Brown, a descendant of this couple. 161

See Photo of Andrew and Mary West

Mary (Gough Burgar) and Andrew Wood West had a daughter, Charlotte West 161, 78

In the 1851 Census Mary and Andrew West are found to be still living at 24 Banner square. It would seem that Andrew Wood West was now a Tax Collector (presumably he collected the Poor Rates)

See 1851 Census

Andrew's brother, John West, was a watchmaker. It is presumed that his step-nephew, John Wesley Burgar, learnt the trade from him since John is later recorded as being a watchmaker.  

In the 1861 Census, Andrew West is recorded as a 'retired undertaker', suggesting that it was probably he who buried his step-daughter, Mary Burgar.

See 1861 Census

Andrew Wood West was born in 1790 11 and died in 1862.  Civil Registration reference is Jun 1862, vol 1c, p 120, Shoreditch, London.16

Andrew Wood West's Will was proven in 1862 where he leaves his estate to his wife Mary, and then to his daughter Charlotte, wife of Alfred Hudson Leather.

See transcript of Will

Details of the Charlotte (West) Leather and the Leather family have yet to be finalised.


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