Grace Sampson 1822-1886 & John Hicks 1823-1883
Married on 27 Dec 1845 St Just in Penwith, Cornwall. Witnesses John Hicks Snr and John Tregear.

Grace Sampson

Seventh child of John and Grace Sampson

Baptised: 19 May 1822 Perranuthnoe, Cornwall

Died:  At the age of 63 on 21 Apr 1886 Church Town, St Just in Penwith, Cornwall

Buried: 24 Apr 1886 St Just in Penwith, Cornwall (No headstone sighted in 2015)

John Hicks

First child of John & Ann Hicks

Baptised: 12 Mar 1823 St Just in Penwith, Cornwall. Residence Bosvargus.

Died: At the age of 63 on ? Sep 1883 St Just in Penwith, Cornwall

Buried: 24 Sep 1883 St Just in Penwith, Cornwall (No tombstone sighted in 2015)

Occupation: Tin miner




It is assumed that Grace was named after her mother. Grace was 8 years of age when her mother died in 1830. Research thus far has not been able to determine what happened to her father John Sampson. It may be that Mary, her older sister has a level of resposibility to caring for her younger sisters in Christiana, Grace and Elizabeth (The 1841 census lists Mary Sampson as the head of house). In 1839, a seventeen year old Grace Sampson appeared at Bodmin assizes on the charge of ‘Larceny by a servant’. She was found guilty and was sentenced to prison at Bodmin Gaol for three months. Her record there says she was admitted 2 Aug 1839 (Her number was 6091). Her occupation was given as servant and her abode as ‘Perran’. Her crime: Stealing at Marazion Sundry Articles of Apparel the property of George Seeley. Grace was committed to trial at the Summer Assizes 1 Aug 1839. 3 Cal Mos H L, first and last weeks in Soly. No previous. This record goes on to describes Grace as aged 17, height 5-4¼, eyes dark, hair brown, complexion fresh, can read, single. Scar over left Eye, little fingers crooked. Freckled. Grace was discharged 1 Nov 1839. Remarks Behaviour ‘Orderly’

The 1841 English census found Grace living with her sisters Mary, Christian and Elizabeth in Goldsithney. Next door was the family of her eldest brother John.  At this time these siblings were all employed in the Cornish mining industry. The years to follow would see them moving to various locations. The sisters moved to Carnyorth most probably for employment reasons working as bal maidens until they were married. Christian and her elder brother John made the big decision to migrate to the Colony of South Australia in 1847. Elizabeth died in 1849 and their brother in Thomas migrated to the USA in 1848. Grace married John Hicks in 1845.  The censuses indicate that John & Grace Hicks lived in  Letcha for the remainder of their lives. John’s parents lived at Letcha as did a number of his relatives. Both John and Grace could not write(as shown by their marriage certificate where they signed their names with a mark) as in their childhood there was no law requiring primary aged children to attend school. That law would not arrive till many years later in 1880. Of their seven children only three made it to adulthood.

The 1841 Census finds Grace living with her sisters and next door to her eldest brother’s family in Goldsithney. The census does not indicate where in Goldsithney they were living but it is assumed to be the Gears (a small collection of homes found along Gears Lane) as this was where their mother was living at the time of her death in 1830.
The 1851 Census for Letcha appears to have errors in that it gives the name Mary when it should be Grace and the place of birth is given as St Just when it should have read Perranuthnoe for Grace.
John & Grace Hicks in the 1861 Census for Letcha, St Just in Penwith, Cornwall. Error in place of birth for Grace is given as St Just when it should read Perranuthnoe.
John & Grace Hicks in the 1871 Census for Letcha, St Just in Penwith, Cornwall
John & Grace Hicks in the 1881 Census for Letcha, St Just in Penwith, Cornwall

Grace Hicks 1886 death certificate. Her son Thomas present at her time of death.

The Hicks family lived in Letcha. Here is a view of Letcha in 2015. It comprises of three stone cottages and it is assumed that John & Grace lived their lives from one of these. St Just in Penwith can be seen from the property as can Land’s End. The sea is witin walking distance and is behind these buildings.