The Charles Family and Pelsall Hall
The Charles Family and Pelsall Hall book was published after a rather unusual chain of events.
I began research on the history of the Charles family and Pelsall Hall back in 2003 when publishing Pelsall Times.
Despite having this fascinating glimpse into the world of the Charles family and despite extensive research at the time I was unable to locate any photographs of the Charles family to allow me to see what they looked like. Hence in 2004 despairingly frustrated I had to leave the Charles family behind and what I considered to be an unfinished project.
On 5th September 2011 I received a call from Andrew Weller, Chairman of Pelsall History Centre who told me that he had been contacted by descendants of the Charles family who would be visiting the centre the following day. He had contacted me to ask if I would be able to come along to meet them since I had researched and written such a lot about them when I was publishing Pelsall Times.
Due to unavoidable commitments at the time, regrettably I was unable to meet the descendents.
The following day the descendants arrived at Pelsall History Centre and stayed for several hours, during which time they poured over issues 23,24 and 25 of Pelsall Times which told the story of The Charles family and Pelsall Hall.
When the descendants visited the history centre, they bought with them two photographs of Charles family members which Andrew very kindly emailed to me. It was then that I saw some of the Charles family members for the first time.
Both photographs were clearly taken in the grounds of Pelsall Hall.
Shortly after ‘meeting’ the Charles family for the first time another familiar photograph appeared on the internet so I decided to contact the seller to find out if he had any more photographs connected to Pelsall Hall.
The seller did write back to me and informed me that he had three ‘badly broken’ albums containing a number of very poor and faded photographs which had once belonged to Beatrice Ethel Charles of Pelsall Hall.
When I received the photographs I was delighted by what I found. There were a number of loose pages and an old album which had lost its cover. The green coloured inner page read: Beatrice Ethel Charles, Amateur photos of home scenes Summer of 1894. Not only did I have the loose pages and a photograph album, but absolute proof of who the photographs belonged to, Beatrice Ethel Charles of Pelsall Hall.
Many of the photographs I now have in my private collection are very poor quality, very faded, and beyond repair, but nonetheless tell a fascinating story of one generation of the Charles family of Pelsall Hall.