Cornish lad Tom found work
in Redruth town at the inn as
an ostler like his horse loving
forefathers. They were drivers,
stable boys, ostlers working
with horses, teaching their
sons their horse loving skills.

Young laundry maid Bessie at his
inn caught his eye, his fancy,
his love. Soon she was pregnant,
they wed. Later little Tom was
joined by a sister, and a brother.

Hard times came to Cornwall.
Unemployed Tom joined the
desperate ranks at the mine
head daily, grasping odd
days of work as two more
babies arrived. In despair
at the mines’ darkness, in
grief for his stable days,
Tom wallowed in alcohol
blotting out his pain.

His sisters in New Zealand
married to farmers, set up
his family’s passage there.
But alcohol now gripped him
hard despite his new job in
the livery stables, caring
for horses. His drinking
continued, cost him his life.

His widow and children now
faced life in a new land without
him after two months in their
distant new homeland.



In 1689 French state and
monarchy aligned with the
Catholic church yet to
their fury urban artisan
classes sought God and true
faith in their own beliefs
and own church worship.

These skilled tradesmen and
workers with no wealth or
power owed no allegiance to
landowners, living simply
off daily earnings from
their own tools and labour.

So soldiers and populace
were stirred up to slaughter
these simple folk living and
worshipping their own way
………… in a bloody massacre
on Sain Bartholomew’s day.

Some escaped over borders,
jumped aboad foreign ships.

Young Thomas the lamp maker
sole survivor of his family
sailed into Falmouth to
start life again, in Cornwall.


Out Of The Workhouse

As Victorian Britain’s empire
prospered in trade from its
scattered colonies those distant
governments sought European
settlers to clear and farm
rich soil for crops and herds
offered assisted passages for
labourers and families to
cross the vast oceans.

Scandinavian councils cleared
parishes of surplus young
men and couples prolifically
breeding dependent children
forcing them to acccept passages
with deposits paid to a distant
land or accept harsh living
at home. Fare deposits cost
less than a lifetime’s upkeep.

For three months they sailed
to a distant land with a foreign
language to hack out farm
clearings from thick forest
on allocated land living
in rough shacks, tents,
toiling awn to dusk daily.

No fares were paid to
return to families, homes
or a familiar tongue
in their own home land.

Out Of The Workhouse