Mrs Ann HOLLIDAY, née Sellar (1795–1880)
Her son Thomas Henry HOLLIDAY (1833–1893)
St Mary Magdalen section: Row 18, Grave D59½

Ann Holliday



WHO DIED JAN. 25, 1880





WHO DIED SEP. 6, 1893




Ann Sellar was born in Garsington in 1795 and baptised there on 12 July. She was the daughter of Thomas Sellar or Sellard and his wife Hannah, who had seven other children baptised at that church: Mary (1782), Thomas (1784), Hannah (1786), Joseph (1788), John (1789) Samuel (1791) and Edward (1793).

Her future husband Joseph Holliday (not buried here) was the son of John Holliday, Yeoman Bedel of the University, and his wife Jane, and was baptised at St Aldate’s Church on 2 January 1799. He was matriculated by the University of Oxford as a tonsor (barber) on 9 July 1819, around the time he reached the age of 21.
For more on his family, see the grave of his brother Moses Holliday.

On 29 August 1822 at St Michael's Church, Oxford, Ann Sellar married Joseph Holliday, who was described as a hairdresser: they were both then living in that parish. They had the following children:

  • Jane Elizabeth Holliday (born in Oxford in 1823 and baptised at St Michael's Church on 28 December);
    died aged six years five months and buried in St Michael's churchyard on 8 May 1830
  • George Holliday (born in Oxford in 1825 and baptised at St Michael's Church on 18 December)
  • John Holliday (born in Oxford in 1827/8 and baptised at St Michael's Church on 6 January 1828):
    died aged on year eight months and buried in St Michael's churchyard on 12 August 1829.
  • William Henry Holliday (born in Oxford in 1830 and baptised at St Michael's Church on 15 July)
    died aged five weeks and buried in St Michael's churchyard on 23 July 1830
  • Rebecca Anne Holliday (born in Oxford in 1831 and baptised at St Michael's Church on 17 July)
  • Thomas Henry Holliday (born in Oxford in 1833 and baptised at St Michael's Church on 13 April.)

The family lived in St Michael's parish, and Pigot's Directory for 1823/4 establishes that their home was in Turl Street, as it lists Joseph Holliday as a hairdresser in “Jesus College-lane”.

Three of their infant children died in 1829 and 1830, and two more were born in 1831 and 1833.

Ann's husband Joseph Holliday died at the age of 38 and was buried in St Michael's churchyard on 4 December 1835. (All the family burials prior to the opening of St Sepulchre's Cemetery in 1848 took place in this churchyard.)

Ann and her children Rebecca and Thomas are hard to find in the 1841 census, but her son George (16) was apprenticed to the shoemaker William King in St Mary Magdalen parish

Ann's son George Holliday died in Oxford in 1845 at the age of 20 and was buried in St Michael's churchyard on 7 November.

At the time of the 1851 census Ann (55) was a seampstress and living at 2 Joy's Passage, which ran beside the shop of the tailor called Joy in Parks Road, opposite Wadham College. Living with her were her daughter Rebecca (19), who was a seampstress, and her son Thomas (16), who was an apprentice to a bookbinder.

Her daughter Rebecca was married in 1857:

  • On 27 December 1857 at St Bartholomew's Church, Moor Lane, London, Rebecca Anne Holliday (26) of Parks Road married George Best (25), a college servant of Wood Street, St Ebbe's and the son of the shoemaker George Best senior.

At the time of the 1861 census Ann Holliday (65) was still working as a dressmaker and living at 2 Joy's Passage with her son Thomas (27), who was now the sub-librarian of Oxford City Library, which had opened in 1854 in the Old Town Hall (which stood on the site of the present one). In 1867 it was advertised as being open from 9am to 10pm, presumably every day.

By the time of the 1871 census Ann (75), who was still working as a seampstress, had moved to 73 George Street, also in St Mary Magdalen parish, and her son Thomas (36) was still living with her and working in the city library.

Ann died in 1880:

† Mrs Ann Holliday née Sellar died at George Street at the age of 84 on 25 January 1880 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 29 January (burial recorded in the parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).

Her son Thomas Henry Holliday, who never married, is hard to find in the 1881 census.

His sister Rebecca Anne Holliday, Mrs Best and her husband George Best do not appear to have had any children, and George continued to work as a college servant. They remained in St Ebbe's parish where George was born: at 9 Wood Street in 1861; at 19 Cambridge Terrace in 1871; and at 15 Cambridge Street in 1881. Rebecca's husband George Best died in early 1885, and her only surviving brother Thomas came to live with her.

In 1891 Thomas (57), who was still the Sub-librarian at the city library, was boarding at 15 Cambridge Street in Holy Trinity parish, St Ebbe's with his widowed sister Rebecca Anne Best. He died at her house two years later, and was buried with his mother:

† Thomas Henry Holliday died at 15 Cambridge Street, St Ebbe's at the age of 59 on 6 September 1893 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 8 September (burial recorded in the parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).

His effects came to £98 14s. 3d., and his executor was his sister Rebecca.

Rebecca Anne Best (80), the last surviving member of this family, was living on her own at 15 Cambridge Street in the 1911 census. She died there at the age of 86 (not 89 as recorded) on 23 December 1917. She was buried on 28 December, and as her burial is recorded in the register of St Thomas's Church, she was probably buried in Osney Cemetery. Her effects came to £113 12s., and her executor was her relation Thomas Richard Sellar, who was a farmer.



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