This page for my Families of Winster book was probably the hardest to make so far because I know so little about Thomas Boam , my 5x G Grandfather - he is the last generation before civil registration and censuses teach us so much more about our ancestors.
He probably was a Lead miner, like his sons and grandsons but I can find nothing to confirm that. He may have lived in Woolleys Yard as his descendants did, but again, nothing I have found confirms this - so the page below is simply what I know of him and his family and Winster, where he lived his whole life.
Thomas Boam was born in 1768, and baptised on 23rd October 1768 at St Johns the Baptist Church in Winster, the son of James Boam and Ann Allen. He was the 4th child and second son of the couple. Little is known of his early life, however a large proportion of the population of Winster was employed in the nearby Lead Mines. Certainly Thomas’ sons James and Thomas and those of several generations following him, were Lead Miners.
On 29th June 1790 Thomas married Martha Walker, who was the daughter of Adam Walker and Sarah Ohme, also of Winster.
Very soon after their marriage their first son James was born, and was baptised on 28th December 1790 .
Thomas and Martha went on to have at least 6 children including one who died as an infant in 1808.
Both Thomas and Martha died in the same year 1822 . Martha died first on the 4th June and was buried in St John the Baptist churchyard 2 days later on 6th June of that year.
Just a few months later in October, Thomas also died and is buried in the same churchyard as his
Winster changed considerably during the term of Thomas’ life. Mining had brought immense prosperity. Between 1720 and 1770, Winster's population had grown to more than 2,000 and over 20 inns had sprung up. Most of the houses, now standing in Winster, date from those times. But the huge amounts of ore extracted eventually rebounded on profitability. By the late 18 century, the London Lead Company found their Derbyshire operations too costly and sold their Peak District concessions in 1778.
By the end of the 18th century, most of the mines had closed, with only two continuing to operate into the 19th century. Population returns dramatically reflect the industrial decline. In 1789 the population had declined to little more than 1000 and by 1801 there were only 750 people in the village