Charles May was the fifth child of Elizabeth Agent & John May christened October 24th, 1813 at East Grinstead, Sussex .
Charles married Lydia Dunford on January 27th, 1839 at St Mark's, Kennington, London. Lydia was the daughter of Lydia Dunford & Robert Walker, a shoemaker, who had married in 1813 at Croydon. Lydia was christened Lydia Walker on November 25 th 1817 at St John the Baptist, Croydon, Surrey. It is unknown why Lydia gave her mothers maiden name at the time of her marriage.
By 1841 Charles & Lydia had 2 children - Elizabeth (2) & Mary (6 months). The family were living at Mitcham Lane, Streatham, Surrey in 1841 & Charles was a horse keeper. Living next door were Lydia's parents, her father being described as a shoe m; they had 2 gardeners living with them.
In 1851 Charles & Lydia were living at Leyham Lane , Streatham & Charles was now described as a stable man. They now had Elizabeth, Mary Ann & Lydia (5) at home. Charles' mother-in-law, Lydia Walker, aged 79 was living with them. She was described as a pauper, gardener's widow.
In 1860 Charles, an ostler at the Swan Inn, Kennington Rd, was charged with having received a quantity of horse food knowing it to be stolen from Messrs. Ind, Coope & Co, brewers of Whitechapel. Charles admitted his guilt & was sentenced to 3 months hard labour at Wandsworth House of Correction. (Bell’s Weekly Messenger, January 14th, 1860)
By 1861 Charles had become a potter & he & Lydia were living at 1 Spencer Place, Kennington, Lambeth, Surrey . At home were 3 children – daughter Mary Ann (listed as Margaret in census), a servant & sons John (7) & William (3). Daughter Elizabeth was now married to her cousin William Mays, the son of William May [m.4] & they had a 2 week old son Arthur. They were living at Chiddingstone, Kent where William was a carter. Daughter Lydia, now calling herself Caroline, was a servant for David Heron & family, a publican in Kennington.
Daughter Mary Ann married Richard Cole, a private in the Grenadier Guards in 1864 at Lambeth.
There is a death for Charles William Mays recorded in Lambeth in July-September 1865.
In 1871 widow Lydia , now a laundress, was living at 3 Milford Place , Kennington, Lambeth with sons John, a cowman, & William, an errand boy. Visiting was Sarah Barrister, a 34 year old dressmaker. Also listed with them was Frank Marks, a 3 year old nurse child.
In 1881 Lydia had returned to Streatham & was living at 2 Lanes Cottages, Croydon Rd. She was still working as a laundress & had 3 boarders living with her. Son William had joined the Royal Navy by this time & was a gunner in the Royal Marines on board ship ‘District Monarch' on the night of the census. Daughter Mary Ann & husband Richard Cole, now a dock policeman, were living at Poplar, London in 1881 & by this time they had had 5 children.
In July-September 1884 son William Frederick married Mary Ann Evans at Portsea, Hants.
Lydia was still at Lanes Cottages in 1891 & with her was son John, a labourer. Son William & his wife Mary were living at 11 Sibthorp Rd, Mitcham, Surrey & William was now a firework maker & Mary was a laundress. They had a 2 year old daughter Beatrice.
Lydia died in April-June 1897, aged 79, the death being registered at Croydon.
In 1911 daughter Mary Ann was widowed & living at 7 Charlwood Place, Pimlico St, St George, London.
The children of Charles May & Lydia Walker were:
m.5.1 Elizabeth Mays born March 26th, 1839 at Streatham & christened April 28th, 1839 at St Leonard 's, Streatham, Surrey; died Oct-December 1918 at Cuckfield, Sussex
m.5.2 Mary Ann Mays christened July 9th, 1843 at St Leonard 's, Streatham, Surrey
m.5.3 Lydia Caroline Mays born January 3rd, 1846 at Streatham & christened May 8th, 1851 at St Leonard's, Streatham, Surrey
m.5.4 John Charles Mays born April 11th 1854 at Streatham & christened September 10th, 1854 at St Leonard's, Streatham, Surrey; died Oct-December 1896 at Streatham
m.5.5 William Frederick Arthur Mays born July 1st, 1858 at Lambeth, Surrey; died Jan-March 1900 at Croydon, Surrey