Colin Russell gave us his notes on his viewing of the Potton parish registers that have been very useful. Transcriptions of the registers are available on line on a number of websites including familysearch.com. The source for the following list is the Potton History Society’s website that includes this page listing all the main families featuring in the parish registers of Potton and the neighbouring hamlet of Sutton, so scroll down for Russells, Wagstaffs and connected families. Link to Society’s main page.
[NB permission to copy material from Potton History Society’s website not yet sought.]
Comment on the Russell family from the Potton History Society’s site:
From the middle of the 19th century the owners of the Potton Tanyard were a family named Braybrook, they came from Spaldwick in Huntingdonshire. The business was sold, I believe in the 1950s, to the firm of Garners who owned the tanyard in Hitchin in Hertfordshire. Potton’s tanyard eventually closed in about 1970, I don’t know whether any of the Company’s records have been preserved but if they have they will probably be in the Hertfordshire Record Office. It seems as if fellmongers moved between the various sites as is shown by the Russells in the list below. Some of the early parish register entries below may not be to do with the same family as the one you are interested in which probably starts with the William & Hannah in 1777. The name Frances is most likely a transcription error in the lists produced from the original registers, a not uncommon occurrence. I believe it should be Hannah which would make more sense.
Russell with spelling variations where appropriate.
P = Potton. S = Sutton.
c = baptism, m = marriage, b = banns 3rd reading, d = burial or death.
(w)= widow or widower.
Dates pre-1752 changed to new style.
* indicates trade of fellmonger.
Pm 17 Nov.1723 William & Sarah MERITON.
Pm 31 Dec.1727 Richard & Elizabeth BARTLE.
Pc 26 Mar.1731 Richard s/o Richard & Elizabeth.
Pd 03 Apr.1731 Richard s/o Richard & Elizabeth.
Pm 26 Dec.1731 Mary & Thomas JACKSON.
Pc 13 Feb.1732 William s/o Richard & Elizabeth.
Pd 21 Dec.1732 William s/o Richard & Elizabeth.
Pc 10 Nov.1734 Elizabeth d/o Richard & Elizabeth.
Pd 26 May.1738 Richard labourer.
Pd 29 Oct.1748 Elizabeth widow.
Pm 29 Oct.1751 Elizabeth & John GREGORY of Dunton.
Carolyn’s comment: There is a break here. William and Sarah Meriton have moved away. The two male offspring of Richard and Elizabeth Bartle died in infancy and Richard and Elizabeth died in Potton. There is a very very slim possibility that William and Sarah Meriton were the grandparents of William Russell whose second child is the next entry in the Potton records following his move from Shefford where he married ‘Ann Mary’ Gregory. Looking at the final entry above it is interesting to note that about 25 years earlier Elizabeth Russell, surviving daughter of Richard and Elizabeth had married John Gregory of Dunton, a nearby village and appears to have moved away from Potton (or stayed childless).
Pc 20 Dec.1777 Sarah d/o William & Hannah, sojourners (visitors).
Pc 22 Dec.1779 Rebecca d/o William & Hannah.
Pc 01 Aug.1782 Anna Maria d/o William & Frances.
Pc 13 Apr.1785 Martha d/o William & Hannah.
Pc 29 Apr.1787 William d/o William & Frances Maria.
Pc 15 May.1789 Jacob s/o William & Hannah Maria.
Pc 06 Mar.1791 Joseph s/o William & Hannah Maria.
Pd 16 Oct.1791 Joseph infant.
Pc 18 May.1794 Mary d/o William & Hannah Maria.
Pm 16 Jan.1803 Hannah & Thomas DARTS of Wrestlingworth.
Pm 22 Mar.1808 William & Elizabeth TAYLOR.
Pd 22 Nov.1808 Hannah aged 58.
Pc 01 Jan.1809 Eliza d/o William & Elizabeth.
Pm 18 Jun.1811 Jacob & Mary RICHARDSON.
Pc 12 Nov.1815 Mary d/o William & Elizabeth. *
Pc 12 Nov.1815 William s/o William & Elizabeth. *
Pc 12 Nov.1815 John s/o William & Elizabeth. *
Pb 26 Jun.1816 Ann of Everton & Joseph ROBERTS.
Pc 27 Apr.1821 Mary (7) d/o Jacob & Mary. *
Pc 27 Apr.1821 Hannah (5) d/o Jacob & Mary. *
Pc 27 Apr.1821 Ann (2) d/o Jacob & Mary. *
Pc 27 Apr.1821 Jacob s/o Jacob & Mary. *
Pc 07 Apr.1824 Fanny d/o Jacob & Mary. *
Pc 10 Jul.1826 William s/o Jacob & Mary. *
Pd 09 Apr.1828 Mary
Sm 27 Apr.1830 William & Ann COXALL.
Pm 15 Aug.1830 Jacob (w) & Susanna Townsend (w)
Pc 05 Jul.1831 Emma d/o Jacob & Susanna. *
Pc 16 Feb.1834 George Wagstaff s/o Jacob & Susanna. *
Pc 11 Jul.1841 George Wagstaff (8) s/o Jacob & Susan.* (8) = eight years old
Pc 11 Jul.1841 Louisa d/o Jacob & Susan.* (born 2 Nov.1836)
Carolyn’s query: why was GWR senior baptised twice? Ask local family history gurus.