Place:Stepney, Middlesex, England

redirected from Place:Stepney, England
NameStepney
Alt namesStepney St Dunstansource: Vision of Britain
TypeParish
Coordinates51.5168°N 0.0416°W
Located inMiddlesex, England     ( - 1889)
Also located inLondon, England     (1889 - 1965)
See alsoStepney (metropolitan borough), London, Englandmetropolitan borough in which the parish of Stepney was located 1900-1965
Tower Hamlets (London Borough), Greater London, EnglandLondon borough to which it was transferred in 1965
source: Family History Library Catalog

The map is based on one in A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 11, Stepney, Bethnal Green from the Victoria County History Series provided by British History Online




Stepney, or Stepney St Dunstan, is one of the ancient parishes of Middlesex. Historically it covered most of the area between the City of London on the west and the River Lea to the east, being broadly similar in extent to the modern London Borough of Tower Hamlets. As London grew outside its city walls eastwards, Stepney was gradually absorbed into the urban area of London. Its various hamlets broke away to become parishes in their own right. In 1889 it was transferred from Middlesex to the newly-created County of London and in 1900 it became the major part of Stepney Metropolitan Borough. Stepney Metropolitan Borough was abolished in 1965, and the area became part of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets - effectively re-uniting the ancient parish (along with the Metropolitan Borough of Poplar and the Metropolitan Borough of Bethnal Green).

The parish church of Stepney is St. Dunstan's and All Saints which stands on a site on Stepney High Street which has been used for Christian worship for over a thousand years. The church is surrounded by a churchyard of nearly seven acres (28,000 m²). In the 1660s the churchyard was enlarged to cope with the massive number of deaths during the Great Plague of London. In one eighteen-month period 6,583 died, with 154 being buried in one day in September 1665. The church also has a long traditional link with the sea and many sailors were buried here. It was once known as the 'Church of the High Seas'.

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Stepney is a district of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets in London's East End that grew out of a medieval village around St Dunstan's church and the 15th century ribbon development of Mile End Road. The area built up rapidly in the 19th century, mainly to accommodate immigrant workers and displaced London poor, and developed a reputation for poverty, overcrowding, violence and political dissent. It was severely damaged during the Blitz, with over a third of housing totally destroyed; and then, in the 1960s, slum clearance and development replaced most residential streets with tower blocks and modern housing estates. Some Georgian architecture and Victorian era terraced housing survive in patches: for example Arbour Square, the eastern side of Stepney Green, and the streets around Matlock Street.[1]

The area has not yet experienced the levels of gentrification seen in nearby Bow, Wapping and Limehouse but some redevelopment has taken place. The former Arbour Square Police Station and the East End Mission building are also being redeveloped.

Stepney is roughly bounded by Commercial Road, part of the A13, in the south, Mile End Road, part of the A11, in the north and the Regent's Canal in the east. The Western Boundary with Whitechapel is rather ambiguous. It is administered by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

As with most of the East End of London, Stepney was sparsely populated marshland until the 19th century, when the development of London's docks and railways, combined with slum clearance, pushed the displaced poor and various immigrants looking for work into cheap housing being built in the area.

The first community developed around the church of St Dunstan's, which was founded in 923. Its name was recorded around 1000 AD as Stybbanhyð, "Stybba's landing-place". The Domesday Book survey of 1086 gives the name as Stibanhede and says that the land was held by the Bishop of London and was 32 hides large, mainly used for ploughing, meadows, woodland for 500 pigs, and 4 mills. There were over 100 serfs, split between villeins who ploughed the land, and cottars who assisted the villeins in return for a hut or cottage.

Bishop William held this land in demesne, in the manor of Stepney, on the day on which King Edward was alive and dead. In the same vill Ranulph Flambard holds 3½ hides of the bishop.

The Manor of Stepney was held by the Bishop of London in compensation for his duties in maintaining and garrisoning the Tower of London. Further ecclesiastic holdings came about from the need to enclose the marshes and create flood defences along the Thames. Edward VI passed the land to the Wentworth family, and thence to their descendants, the Earls of Cleveland. The ecclesiastic system of copyhold, whereby land was leased to tenants for terms as short as seven years, prevailed throughout the manor. This severely limited scope for improvement of the land and new building until the estate was broken up in the 19th century.

In the early 20th century, Stepney was one of the most Jewish neighbourhoods in England; it was eventually replaced by Stamford Hill.

The Siege of Sidney Street took place in Stepney in 1911.

Greater London Research Tips

  • See wiki.familysearch.org under "London" and also under "Middlesex", "Surrey" and "Kent" for key information about Greater London's jurisdictions and records, plus links to indexes, reference aids and Family History Library holdings.
  • The London Metropolitan Archives (40 Northampton Road, Clerkenwell, London EC1R 0HB) holds records relating to the whole of Greater London. Ancestry (subscription necessary) has produced transcriptions and provides images of lists of baptisms, marriages, and burials in churches across Greater London. These lists start in 1813 and stretch into the 20th century.
  • GENUKI has a long list of websites and archive holders in addition to London Metropolitan Archives above. (The list from GENUKI is not maintained so well that there is never a dead link in it. However, it is often worth googling the title given on the page just in case the contributor has reorganized their website.)
  • GENUKI also has a list of the Archives and Local Studies Libraries for each of the boroughs of Greater London.
  • The London Encyclopaedia by Ben Weinreb and Christopher Hibbert. An e-book available online through Google, originally published by Pan Macmillan. There is a search box in the left-hand pane.
  • London Lives. A very useful free website for anyone researching their London ancestors between the years 1690-1800. This is a fully searchable edition of 240,000 manuscripts from eight archives and fifteen datasets, giving access to 3.35 million names.
  • London Ancestor, a website belonging to one of the London family history societies, has a list of transcriptions of directories from the 18th century, listing in one case "all the squares, streets, lanes, courts, yards, alleys, &C. in and about Five Miles of the Metropolis..." In other parts of the same website are maps of various parts of 19th century London and Middlesex.
  • The proceedings of the Old Bailey, London's central criminal court, 1674-1913. A fully searchable edition of the largest body of texts detailing the lives of non-elite people ever published, containing 197,745 criminal trials held at London's central criminal court. This website is free to use.
  • Registration Districts in London, Registration Districts in Middlesex, Registration Districts in Surrey, Registration Districts in Kent, are lists of the registration districts used for civil registration (births, marriages and deaths, as well as the censuses). There are linked supporting lists of the parishes which made up each registration district, the dates of formation and abolition of the districts, the General Register Office numbers, and the local archive-holding place. This work has been carried out by Brett Langston under the agency of GENUKI (Genealogy United Kingdom and Ireland) and UKBMD - Births, Marriages, Deaths & Censuses on the Internet.
  • A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 11, Stepney, Bethnal Green from the Victoria County History Series provided by British History Online.
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Stepney. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at St Dunstan's, Stepney. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.