John Foulkes, my 3x-great-grandfather, was born in April 1840 in Stone, Staffordshire, England. His parents were migrants, too - both originally from Guilsfield, Montgomeryshire (now Powys), Wales. They moved often as his father was a timber carrier. He married Ann Hobson at St. John the Evangelist, Trent Vale, Stoke Upon Trent, 16 November 1861.
He worked as a grocer, and also a plumber and glazier. By the time he immigrated, he was working as a china painter. He immigrated with his family to the US from Glasgow in the early 1870s. They settled in NYC for a brief period, but wound up in Jersey City by 1880. He continued decorating, dealing, and painting china in the USA - apparently amassing a small fortune. (Of course, none of it made it down to the descendants!) He apparently retired by 1891 - the business must have been quite profitable! He and his family bought what seems like half of Jersey City - there were dozens and dozens of deeds to be found in the Hudson County Recorder of Deeds office. After Ann died, he married Sarah (Wells) Hoesley in 1894. According to local newspapers, John had a Boston bulldog of "aristocratic pedigree" that caused some problems with his neighbors. He was also apparently a prominent yachtsman, and owned and rode thoroughbred horses, receiving numerous awards. He died 15 January 1915 in Jersey City.
Are you ready to meet your immigrants? Let's work together to find your roots.
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