Guild of One-Name Studies
One-name studies, Genealogy
Variants: Honeysett, Honisett, Hunneysett
Category: 1 - A study where research using core genealogical datasets and transcriptions is in its early stages.
Contact: Mrs Cheryl Hunnisett
This study is still quite young having started in 2017. The current focus is on family reconstruction between 1780-1891, although the main family line has been research backed to the mid 1550s. It started with all the Hunnisett, Honeysett and variants records found in the UK 1841-1881 censuses, then all the births, baptisms, marriages, deaths and burials found in this period of time to build family groups and then to link them together if proof was discovered. The core of the current study is the UK but gentle explorations are being made in the USA, Canada, New Zealand and Australia for this same time period.
Over the winter 2018-19, all those Hunnisett, Honeysett and variant family members that died on war service in World War 1 are being researched and linked back to their family lines. Their stories are being written up here.
Collaboration is invited and greatly looked forward to, please contact me via the email address below.
The research covers a number of different spellings that have appeared consistently within the UK records:
Hunnisett, Honeysett, Honisett, Hunneysett
However there are many, many spellings of the surname in the records, partly because most holders of the name during the years 1780-1881 were dependant on others to write for them and partly because of mistranscriptions from handwritten records. Even in the 1939 "census" I have found 32 different spellings. This is not counting mistranscribed Honeycutts.
Many Honeysetts and Hunnisetts fought in WW1. As stories are unearthed, they are written up here.
Do get in touch if these soldiers, sailors, airmen, etc feature in your family tree.
A good guesstimate of the numbers in the 1841 UK census (based on interpretation of the many spellings available) is 361. By the 1881 UK census, this had increased to 727. these number include anyone using the Hunnisett name (or a variant). Therefore wives and stepchildren are included but married daughters are not.
These have formed 35 separate families to date. Evidence suggests that this number of families will reduce significantly when the research reaches further back and proof of family relationships is established.
Numbers of those who had emigrated and had their families in their new country have not been counted yet but so far emigres have been found to belong to one of the 35 families.
In the 1841 census 115 (32%) Hunnisett/Honeysetts etc were born and were enumerated in Kent and 215 (60%) were born and enumerated in East Sussex. There is also a small established family in London (from Sussex origins) and one in Scotland (from Kentish origins).
In total, in 1841 92% of those enumerated were born and still lived in either East Sussex or Kent.
The Hunnisett/Honeysetts born elsewhere mainly married in. The Hunnisett/Honeysetts found elsewhere had generally travelled from Sussex or Kent for work:
Many of these returned to their home county at a later date.
Family reconstruction has identified 12 families from Kent, 23 from East Sussex. This identification is based on the birth place of the oldest male in the family line discovered to date.
By the 1881 census, 21 different counties are represented by birth place. Again many of these extra counties represent women who married in. Sussex and Kent is still the home of most name holders, 87%, with 67% in Sussex and 20% in Kent. The Scottish branch is represented by 8 birthplaces and other family groupings have established themselves in Cumberland, Middlesex and Surrey.
In 1841, 59% of men (and boys) whose occupations were listed, work on the land or closely associated trades and therefore live in villages, estates or farms outside of the towns. Trades, small shopkeepers and working as a servant are listed as the other main occupations.
By 1881, only 21% of males are still involved in agriculture. Numbers have grown in the other roles listed above and new roles on the railway, in the gas industry, factories and in building are being taken up. This is mirrored by more families living in or closer to a town, albeit still in East Sussex or Kent. Those who have taken up the "modern" occupations have generally moved to Middlesex or Surrey where these opportunities were available.
All the data researched so far has been from online sources, predominantly
GRO, FreeBMD, Ancestry, FindmyPast, TheGenealogist, Sussex Family History Group, FamilySearch, FreeREG, British Newspaper Archives
A small foray into US, Australian and Canadian records has been undertaken as part of family reconstruction.
Search for your family on the Hunnisett/Honeysett website or read the family stories I have unearthed on my blog.
You may find our other Guild websites of interest: