Rowden Photo Board

This page gives the opportunity to show some of your latest - and not so new - Rowden family photos. If you have a suitable photo then please email them to me.

April 2023
At the crossing of many roads in the county of Devon in England, the junction is often given a name. As can been seen in this photo, this crossroads is called "Rowden Cross". Click on the menu right, for more Rowden places.
March 2023
In 1851 Robert Rowdon, aged 30, was the innkeeper of the Roughwood Inn, Babbacombe, Devon. The Inn is now a pub and called The Divers Arms - it has also been know as the Coach House. Robert was born in London but married in Devon and then lived there for 20 years or so, before returning to live near London.
February 2023
George William Rowden (1864-1917) was born in Ringmore Devon. He became very good at the high-jump and was AAA Champion for a number of years in the late 1880s. He even demonstrated his skills in music halls. He suffered an injury to his thigh in 1891 and this may have been the end of his 'jumping career'.
January 2023
This flagon has the name of Henry Rowden stamped in the glaze. There were Rowdens living in Christchurch, Hampshire briefly in the 19th century, but Henry's name is not found within that family. Any help in identifying Henry very welcome.
December 2022
Walter Rowden (1841-1922) was a master saddler who lived and worked in Tiverton, Devon. With horses being a main mode of transport in the 19th century I suspect he would rarely have been out of work. He had a saddler brother John, who lived in the same town - maybe they worked together.
November 2022
The Battle of Britian Memorial in Westminster, London commemorates those airmen who died serving their country. John Hampton Rowden was a spitfire pilot who lost his life when his aircraft was shot down near Dunkirk, France. More about John can be found at the BBM website ?.
October 2022
This is a Rowden headstone in North Tawton churchyard. I've suspected it was here but in spite of many searches never found it. Then by chance, I discovered it this summer. Both born and bred in North Tawton, George lived there all of his life; Mary only moved to Exeter to live with her son, after George died.
September 2022
Another CDV (see March this year). This shows Jack Rowden, who looks quite young to have used one. Maybe he is older than he looks! If in his late teens, probably taken about 1905.
August 2022
This photo of Stanley Rowden was kindly sent to me by Aileen, his daughter. Stanley lived for most of his life in Liecestershire.
July 2022
This interesting magazine cutting, from Country Life, shows that a residential, sporting and farming estate, known as Rowden, was up for sale in 1945.
June 2022
This hip flask was presented to Captain W C Rowden by sections of the Royal Corps of Signals during WWII. It is not clear who 'W C' was - possibly William Charles Rowden, who was born 1915 in Kent and served in India.
May 2022
Charles Rowden was born and lived all his life in Stapleford, Wiltshire. He grew up to be a clock and watch maker. This is one of his long case clocks.
April 2022
Signatures are very personal and may indicate something of the bearer's character. This is the signature of John Rowdon who signed a Settlement Examination in 1794. Sometimes documents may be linked to the same person by careful comparison of the signatures.
March 2022
Carte de Visite were 19th century visiting cards and maybe the equivalent of present day LinkedIn. James Rowden was a Baptist Minister who spent much of his life in Jamacia and this was his card. Possibly taken near the end of his life - he died aged 57. Find more about James on the Notable Rowdens page.
February 2022
This is the front page of William Rowden's strawberry grower's catalogue, probably from the 1960s. He lived in Combe Martin, North Devon, which is famous for it's strawberry fields.
January 2022
This marriage, between James Rowdon and Elizabeth Harris, took place on New Year's Day January 1856. Not a common day to get married but there are at least 6 other Rowd*ns who married on this day, the last being 1983.
December 2021
This gravestone tells the painfully tragic story of a Richard Rowdon and his wife Mary from the town of Chulmleigh, Devon. It shows the names of 10 of their 11 children, all who died very young. The stone was presumeably errected before John, the last, died and he died just 27 years old leaving parents with no children.
November 2021
With the popular use of social media today birth announcements in newpapers are fewer than they used to be. In 1904 newpapers were probably the best means of letting people know of your new baby. This birth in Plymouth was announced in the Devon and Exeter Gazette.
October 2021
Robert Rowdon (1852-1915) was born in Devon but some time after he married, moved to Lyndhurst, Hampshire where he set up a coach building business. In the early days car manufacturers built the engine and chassis and coach builders would add the car body.
September 2021
There's nothing like a wedding to bring the family together and recently Abi Rowden and Stu Pinckard were married at St Leonard's church in Exeter, Devon. It seems that the last time a Rowden was married in this church was 1914. Congratulations and very best wishes to them both.
August 2021
William Rowden was a surgical instrument maker and cutler. As well as making instruments it appear that he made razors and knives, including fleams. This straight razor was probably made by him - or alternatively its owner wanted to personalise his own.
July 2021
Congratulations to Daniel Rowden who has been selected to represent GB in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Daniel became the British Champion last year, winning the 800m race at the Continental meet in Zagreb with a superb performance. He will now be our hope in the 800m. Possibly the first Rowden Olympian. Bon Courage Daniel!
June 2021
Known as Toby, Cuthbert Roger Rowden was a pilot in the Royal Flying Corps during WW1. He had served in the army and was transferred to the RFC becoming a Flying officer in 1915. He lost his life in April 1918 when his aircraft crashed on a sortie in Essex, Engand, not far from his home airfield. Possibly the first Rowden pilot, he had married only 7 months earlier.
May 2021
Russell Rowden passed away on 10th May 2021, nearly 97 years old, lived a long beautiful life. US Navy Vet fought in WWII and Korean War. Found this beauty of a picture of him, he loved his beer.... rumor has it that "drink like a sailor" originated from him - Tyler Rowden.
April 2021
Diana Hope Rowden was a S.O.E. operative in France during World War 2. In spite of being quite fearless - and a good shot - she was captured and subsequently lost her life in tragic circumstances in 1944. She is remembered at a number of memorials including The Runnymede Memorial in Surrey.
March 2021
Last night the 2021 census was taken in England and Wales and will be available to view in 2121! 150 years ago one of the most commonly recorded Rowden occupations was Grocer. This image from the 1871 census, taken on Sunday, 2nd April in Chilmark, Wiltshire, shows that Elizabeth Rowden was not only a Grocer but sold beer as well.

After rather a break the photos are back online...

Monday, 23 July 2012
Congratulations to Rachel Rowden for her part in carrying the Olympic torch in Cliftonville, Margate. More on Youtube.
Monday, 26 March 2012
Old school photos can be quite revealing especially when they haven't been seen for a while. This one from the mid 1960s shows 'yours truly' as a slip of a lad... (yes, but which one?). Seems like the other day!
Monday, 26 December 2011
James Rowden began work as a Lad Porter in April 1880 on London & SW Railway at 16 years of age. In an era when few photos were taken his employment record includes some interesting personal details. Many years later he became a Railway Inspector.
Monday, 31 October 2011
Rowden Abbey Manor house was built in the 19th century in Bredenbury, Herefordshire, UK but this was some time after the Herefordshire Rowdon family had died out in the area.
Monday, 19 September 2011
Samuel James Rowden was a seafarer from Dublin. His mariner records from the Registrar General of Shipping and Seaman (recently made available) include a photo at the age of 25.
Monday, 22 August 2011
The church most used for the life events (christenings, marriages and burials) of Rowdens in London is probably St Pancras Old Church. The church site is one of the oldest in the UK and is found just north west of the London railway station of the same name.
Monday, 27 June 2011
In 1864 Elizabeth Rowden married James Edward Vicary in Crediton, Devon. During the 1980s I was sent a bottle of perfume which was in current production, by one of Elizabeth and James's grandchildren. This week's image shows the perfume which was named after Elizabeth.
Monday, 23 May 2011
Emigration to 'new lands' was very popular in the 19th century for a number of different reasons. However the regulation of such movements was not as we know it today. This image is an extract from a US passport application for William Rowden whose father Samuel had emigrated in 1852.
Monday, 25 April 2011
In August of 1876 Emma Rowden married John Harnack in Lambeth, Surrey. In Royal Wedding week it seems appropriate to mention that John was a valet to HRH Duke of Connaught, Prince Arthur, the third son of Queen Victoria. This is the census image of the household from 1881.
Monday, 28 March 2011
Last night the 2011 census was taken throughout the UK. 100 years ago the census was taken on the night of 2nd April. The photo this week shows an extract of the census record of my great grandfather's family. He worked as a tailor living in Exeter.
Monday, 14 March 2011
The family name Rowden or Rowdon is derived from two Old English words ruh and dun. Thus the surname was given to people who lived in places know by that name i.e. William of Rowden. There are many places in the British Isles and around the world which are known by this name still.
Monday, 28 February 2011
The parish church in Bow in the county of Devon, England has hosted the most Rowden life events of any church; including baptisms, marriages and burials. This early colour postcard shows St Bartholomew church as it was some time ago. The yew trees either side of the path now stand high above the headstones which include Rowden burials.
Monday, 7 February 2011
A splendid photo of two brothers Bob and Jim Rowden in the early 1930s. While not a photo of wonderful clarity it portrays a great sense of mischievous boyhood.
Monday, 31 January 2011
Frances Arabella Rowden was born in the late 18th century and appears to have had a privleged life; she married in 1825 in Paris. She wrote a few books on various subjects and this week's photo shows the titile page of her writings on pagan deities. Inside the cover of this book is a hand written date of September 1823.
Monday, 17 January 2011
Wiltshire born William Rowden was a surgical cutler who set up his business in Northampton, England. This photo shows one his fleaming knives which was used by vets and stock owners to bleed animals to release pressure.
Monday, 10 January 2011
Williamstown Dairy was begun by Henry Rowdon about 1900. This photo shows the milk cart used for deliveries. More...
Monday, 3 January 2011
A fob watch, made by William Bayley of London in 1775, for Jasper Rowden. It has been passed on to the eldest son since that time. More...
Monday, 27 December 2010
Thomas Rowden was water colour artist who painted many moorland scenes. His flair for drawing was demonstrated even as a boy; this photo shows a extract from his school geometry exercise book - circa 1858.
Monday, 20 December 2010
Christmas pudding is being prepared 1961 style. My parents are surrounded by my siblings as we all take a turn to stir the pud!
Monday, 13 December 2010
Headstones in cemeteries provide the family historian with very useful information. Often it may be the only remaining source of certain information. This photo is of a headstone in the churchyard at Holy Trinity, Barnstaple. Being made from slate it remains in good condition in spite of its age.
Monday, 6 December 2010
Records show a Rowdon family living in Coberley in Gloucestershire, England for some while during the 16th and 17th centuries. Robert Rowdon was the Rector of the parish and he died in 1712, aged 97. A memorial stone to Robert is set into the floor of the church along side 5 similar Rowdon stones which include an earlier Rowden rector. Robert's life was threatened by Roundheadsoldiers in November of 1643.
Monday, 29 November 2010
In an attempt to prevent clandestine marriages, the issue of banns or licence was a legal requirement in England from 1754. Almost 230 years ago, in July of 1780, James Rowden married Mary Vincent by licence in Honiton, Devon. The marriage licence was issued on 30th July that year and this week's photo shows where James penned his signature at the bottom of the document.
Monday, 22 November 2010
Highworth is a busy little market town near Swindon, in north Wiltshire, England. Edward Rowden was vicar of the parish for many years until his death in 1869. The memory of his family is kept alive by the stained glass windows about the church particularly on the north side of the nave. This pair of windows are in memory of Edward's first wife Elizabeth, who died in 1825 barely a week after the birth of their ninth child.
Monday, 15 November 2010
Arthur William Rowden was born in Whitstable Kent in 1872. He ran a draper's shop in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, England and this week's photo shows it in the late 1920s. A photo of Arthur and his wife Alice may be found in the Sept 51 gallery.
Monday, 8 November 2010
31 Rowden men gave their lives in World War I; 14 in World War II and the photo this week re-
minds us of their sacrifice. Marking the week in which the Armistice was signed this humble, but well cared Briitsh cemetery at Le Vertannoy in France is tucked into the corner of a field. It is typical of many hundreds of burial grounds along the Western Front, which commemorate the loss of so many men in their prime and is the resting place of Sidney John Rowden.
Monday, 1 November 2010
Weddings are usually a great opportunity to bring the family together. Here on their day in 1944 are Michael O'Shea and 21 year old Betty Rowden surrounded by Betty's immediate Rowden family, including Dad and Mum, William and Annie Rowden.
Monday, 25 October 2010
'T S Rowden & Son' was a family grocer and tea merchants in Kingston on Thames, London. It appears that Thomas Rowden opened his shop about 1870 and continued trading for 50 years or so. Eventually he opened a second shop with one in Richmond Road, the other on Kingston Hill. The photo shows a store account book for a customer, Miss Thorn. The book was recovered from a chimney during house renovations in the 20th century and is held by the Kingston Local History Room.
Monday, 18 October 2010
Born last week, Joseph Rowden is the very latest addition to the Rowden family. This photo, taken when he was just one day old, shows him holding his Grandad's hand.