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Close up of Tijou Screen at Hampton Court Palace

Holland family


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Part 2: Ann Holland (c1812 - 1875)


Ann Holland was born in Pembridge, Herefordshire, and baptised there 04 October 1812, almost certainly at St Mary’s Church in their font dating back to the 13th century. She was the fourth child of Richard Holland and Mary Hill. She would not have received any schooling and it is not known what sort of work she might have done to help support her family in her teenage years. When she was about 23, she married agricultural labourer James Higgins (c1810 - 1896) at St Michael and All Angels Church, Lyonshall, 20 August 1835 (more information about him and their children appear in the Higgins section).

Ann had eight children and all survived infancy and childhood which was remarkable for the time. In England in the mid-19th century, a woman would lose on average one in four of her children before the age of five [1]. Although infant mortality for the ‘unskilled labouring class’ was about twice that of the middle and upper class, those people living in rural areas fared better than urban areas [2] and Herefordshire’s rate was lower than the English and Welsh average [3].

Ann was in poor health later in life: at the time of her death she had been suffering chronic bronchitis for ten years and rheumatism for six years. She died at the family home in New Street, Lyonshall, 17 June 1875, aged 62.



[1] ‘Child and Infant Mortality’ by Max Roser, Hannah Ritchie and Bernadeta Dadonaite, 2013 (

[2] ‘Infant mortality in Victorian Britain: the mother as medium’ by Robert Millward and Frances Bell (2001), Economic History Review, LIV, 4, p699 (; Public health in the 19th century, Herefordshire Through Time website (

[3] Herefordshire Infant Mortality Rate, A Vision of Britain Through Time website (