The Tathams of County Durham
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Maxwell Frederick Deppeler & Mabel Florence Ladner
Maxwell Frederick Deppeler & Mabel Florence Ladner
These pages are a record of the Tatham family of County Durham. Most of the family migrated to the south of England from the mid 1700s onwards, and their north country origins were gradually forgotten. By the end of the 19th century there were Tathams all over the world - in Australia, Canada, Ceylon, China, India, New Zealand and USA, as well as the long established colony in South Africa.

The idea of this website is to raise the family's awareness of our shared history, and to encourage interest and discussion about our heritage.

Feel free to wander around this site and explore. There's a basic guide to the contents at the What's Here page.

Enjoy your visit!

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If you have any questions or comments, or would like to share research, please contact us.

Family members are encouraged to register as users, which lets them view details of living persons.

Status of this website
Update Apr 2020

Meaburn Tathams, four generations (2nd photo)The Tatham Family History website has unfortunately not been regularly maintained for some considerable tine, owing to family circumstances and pressure of other commitments.

Starting May 2019 it is gradually being brought back to life. This is taking some time, as there is much work to be done: responding to several hundred messages and requests, relearning and sharpening website skills, updating the software, learning and respecting the new regulations about consents and data protection, and no doubt many other tasks and obstacles we haven't yet thought about ...

Members and visitors are thanked for their patience and forbearance during this period.

Update March 2020: It looks as if the coronavirus restrictions announced by the British Government will keep the author of this website under effective house arrest for a period of at least 12 weeks. That should provide a welcome opportunity to bring the project back up to date.

Tatham of the Week
Robert Bristow Tatham (1824-1881)

Robert Bristow Tatham One of the more colourful members of the family, Robert Bristow Tatham was the 12th of 12 children of the architect Charles Heathcote Tatham. Brought up in the elegant family home by Regent's Park, he was a pupil at St. Paul's School. Then his mother died and his father's business failed. Sent to sea at the age of 13, he was shipwrecked on his first voyage. Back in London, he obtained a post as a clerk in the tax office. At 18 he married Eliza Carey; a son was born but died after a year. By then Robert had moved on and enlisted in. the Dragoon Guards. Four years later, he followed his brother Edmund to South Africa.
He joined the Cape Mounted Rifles and served for 9 years, winning his sergeant's stripes 5 times, and 5 times being demoted. In 1860 he was made manager of the new Durban-Point Railway and painted the well-known watercolour of the first train. Next he became a surveyor, then turned to the sugar business.
In 1861 Bob Tatham married again, to Susan Noon, from a family of sugar planters at Isipingo. Ten years later they set out with their young children for the diamond diggings at Kimberley. They stayed for a year but had little success. Finally he settled down as a law clerk in Pietermaritzburg. There he died in 1881, leaving a widow, 8 children and no money.
[Grateful acknowledgements again to Gill Tatham]