Bitton Families



by Marion

The CATER family were mainly based in and around Stapleton, but one branch of the family occupied Boyd Mill, Bitton, for several decades in the early 1800s. William CATER (born 1759) and Johanna TYLER (b1761) both of Stapleton, were married in 1788 in St Michael's, Bristol. They moved to Boyd Mill sometime between 1791 and 1816. They had two children, Elizabeth CATER b 1788 (who married Richard BRYANT, a brandy merchant from Bedminster) and John Hinton CATER (b 1791) who married Ann Bush MEERE in 1816. The Hinton middle name came from William's mother Malden HINTON.

John and Ann had 7 children but he died in 1834 when his youngest child was just 2, and Ann remarried to William Hawkins STIBBS in 1837, a farmer at Upper Cully Hall. They had one daughter, Louisa STIBBS.

The eldest surviving son of John Hinton CATER and Ann Bush MEERE, another John Hinton, born 1820, married Elizabeth Hopkins TRIPP, and also lived at Boyd Mill, where 9 children were born. However, tragedy struck in 1858 when their toddler daughter Mary accidentally drowned in the mill pond. Her mother Elizabeth died two years later, and the family moved to Cardiff shortly afterwards. There were many descendants from this branch of the family.

Three younger sons, William, Henry and Edwin, continued to farm in the area throughout the late 1800's; William & wife Ann at Cold Ashton; Henry with wife Elizabeth HANDLY at Marshfield and Edwin and wife Martha RICH at Hollister's Farm, Upton Cheyney, but it seems likely by their census entries that none of them had children.

The Bath grocery firm of CATER, STOFFELL and FORTT was founded by Richard Bryant CATER, the youngest son of John Hinton CATER and Ann Bush MEERE, who was probably named after his uncle. Richard married Hester BRAIN, youngest daughter of James BRAIN (proprietor of Golden Valley coal company) & Hannah; again there were no children from this marriage, but the company continued in business for several decades after Richard's death in 1907.

Hester BRAIN was doubly linked to the family as her sister, Mary Susanna BRAIN, married a man named James HARRIS. After Mary died in childbirth in 1857, James married Louisa STIBBS, Richard's half sister!

The CATER family had a strong naming tradition and used the middle names Wyatt, Hinton (male) and Malden (female) frequently. As far as I am aware, there are no living descendants of this CATER family still in the Bitton area, but the 1901 census and subsequent records show descendants in Cardiff, Essex and Lancashire.


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Marsha, Martin  
We have an indirect connection, via Ann Bush MEERE (1794, Dyrham - 1861, Bitton), eldest daughter of our William/Ann nee BUSH.

Ann m. 1) John Hinton CATER (1791-1834), Feb 1816. They had several children: William (1816, Bristol); Louisa Malden (1818-1839), John Hinton (1829-1879; m. Elizabeth Hopkins TRIPP); William (1822-1877); Henry Wyatt (1824-1872; m. Elizabeth HANDLY); Edwin (1830-1894; m. Martha Unknown); Richard Bush (1832-1907; m. Hester BRAIN; per Marion, changed his middle name to Richard Bryant before 1851 and was the founder of CATER, STOFFELL & FORTT of Bath). Ann m. 2) William STIBBS, abt 1837 and they had a daughter, Louisa (abt 1840; m. 1) James HARRIS; 2) Thomas BENCE).


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