From our Journal

April 2007

Focus on Whaddon - Part 2

Stan Ralls

A Sunday School is Set Up

In 1797 Robert Allen Hurlock was appointed Vicar and served Whaddon for 55 years until his death, aged 81 years, in 1852. He also held Shepreth but lived in Whaddon serving the Churches alternately on Sunday morning and afternoon. His wife, Elizabeth, died in 1845 aged 77 years and their grave is to be found on the north side of the Church adjacent to the road. He was keen to set up a Sunday School in 1835 and duly applied to the Dean and Chapter of Windsor for help in setting up such a school. He said that the children in the village were attending a Sunday School in a different parish and he was afraid that future generations would be influenced by the Dissenters or Nonconformists and therefore be lost to the established Church. A contribution of £2 per annum for the purpose was allowed. Sunday Schools had become popular at the end of the eighteenth century. They were set up to counter illiteracy and ill-discipline amongst children. The idea swiftly became popular and gained the backing of the upper classes and philanthropists and by the mid nineteenth century about one and a half million children were attending Sunday Schools. A further communication in 1841 with Windsor was from his Curate, Arthur Thomas, whom he employed from 1840.He wished to set up a clothing club in connection with the Sunday School and wanted the £2 to be raised to £3. He was of the opinion that 

"The people of the Parish are generally very poor and many of the children are unable to derive any benefit from the Sunday School from want of clothing."

Rules. Whaddon Sunday School Clothing Club

  1. Each child shall pay One Penny every Sunday.
  2. One Halfpenny out of School funds to be added to each penny.
  3. Only articles of USEFUL clothing, and subject to the approval of the Minister, to be bought by the Parents of the Children.
  4. A person to attend at Whaddon to sell the clothing some day in the second week in November.
  5. Each child to give it's OWN penny at the time it's name is called.
  6. No child to be allowed to pay up arrears, unless it's absence has been caused by sickness or by the permission of the Minister.
  7. The pence to be taken always in the afternoon after Divine Service or School.
  8. No penny will be taken from any child who absents itself from Divine Service.
  9. If the Parents have any complaint to make, they must make it to the Minister ONLY, and it will be attended to.
  10. No child admitted to the School under Five years of age.

1d. paid every Sunday makes 4s.4d. at the end of the year. 1/2d. added to each penny makes 2s.2d. at the end of the year. So, a child that pays a penny every Sunday will have 6s.6d. to spend on clothes at the end of the year.

Lin Coe

Further extracts from the Diary of Elijah Larkin

Sunday 19th July (1857)

Went by counsel of our beloved President G. Teasdale with him to Litlington and held meeting at Bro. Weeb's (Webb) house and spoke upon the duties and privileges of the saints and the necessity of paying tithing if we wanted the smiles and approbation of our God to rest upon us, and exhorted all the saints to pay it if they wanted to have confidence in the Lord, live their religion and be gathered to Zion. Saints that had been re-baptised and covenanted to do so were re-confirmed and blessed under the hands of President Teasdale, Elder Jacklin and myself. I was mouthpiece over JEREMIAH WHITE,ANN WHITE, GEORGE EAST and HANNAH WEEB (WEBB). Had a first rate time in the afternoon. President Teasdale addressed the meeting. The Spirit and power of Israel's God truly rested upon him, and the saints took tea at Bro. Thos. Weeb's (Webb's). The brethren went to Orwell to hold meeting there where they had a first rate time. On their way others were re-baptised and confirmed. ...

Monday 20th July.

Returned with George to Whaddon, and visited the saints. Found them going on well. Talked with Bro. Jacklin's wife (EMMA NOBLE) and told her true position and what her future prospects were if she would be baptised and hold faithful to the end. .. Went to Orwell according to appointment. On our way Bro. Teasdale re-baptised 5 others and 2 joined the Church, namely Sister Clark's daughter, aged 10 years, and Sister Wilkin's daughter aged (no age mentioned) years. They were confirmed by the waterside by Bro. Teasdale, Jacklin and myself. It is interesting to note that John's wife Emma had not been baptised into the LDS Church by 1857. John was re-baptised by George Teasdale that year and became President of the Bassingbourn Branch the same year. Craig Shelley (at has researched this part of John's life and discovered that 

"when John Jacklin was Branch President, many new members of the Church were baptised because of his teachings. He performed a large number of the baptisms, confirmations and priesthood ordinations in the Bassingbourn and Whaddon branches. He often walked many miles to attend church, preach and then walk home. These meetings were held in the homes of the church members".

The Mormon Church had it's first branch in the region in Whaddon. It was part of the Bedfordshire Conference. John and his family were not living in Whaddon at the time of the 1861 Census. despite an extensive search I have been unable to find their whereabouts, but in 1871 they are living on The Green, Whaddon. John was an agricultural labourer, as were most of his family and neighbours and, although a fund to assist converts to emigrate was established by the Mormons (known as the Perpetual Emigration Fund it paid convert's passage to America. It had to be repaid once the Saints gained employment in Salt Lake City in the Mormon state of Utah) John did not have sufficient money to pay for himself and his family to emigrate. Instead he sent his eldest son, George Jacklin (1852-1906) ahead. George went in 1862. It was about this time that John began working as a coprolite digger to fund his journey to Utah. I have a copy of the "Memories of George Jacklin" written by his great granddaughter, Ellen Jacklin Tracey who writes that

"John continued digging fossils and his pay check(sic) was used sparingly so that every penny possible might be saved".

According to Tracey, John's wife, Emma, was the financial head of the family. She saved as much as possible to fund the trip to Utah. Meanwhile John was actively preaching and baptising people into the Mormon Faith. In 1873 John sent two more sons to Utah, Moses (eighteen) and Enos Noble (twelve), and two years later John, Emma and their unmarried daughter, Sara Ann, departed from Liverpool on the S.S. Wyoming. The ship reached New York on the 26th September. On the 27th they passed through customs at Castle Garden. The transcontinental railroad was completed in 1869 and Mormon emigrants coming after 1869 were called "Pullman Pioneers" because they came by train rather than travelling with the earlier "handcart companies" or on covered wagons. John Jacklin arrived in the Salt Lake Valley, in Utah twenty-nine years after converting to Mormonism. The 1880 US Census shows John, Emma, Moses and Enos (recorded as Noble) living at East Mill Creek, Salt Lake, Utah. John is now a "farmer". He died 14 years later at Mill Creek. Sources. (Craig Shelley), Memories of George Jacklin by Ellen Jacklin Tracey, 1841-1871 Census returns, Diaries of Elijah Larkin.


Royston and District Family History Society