Welcome to the Irwin-Carruthers family history website.

Only 10 individuals worldwide have ever had the surname Irwin-Carruthers, so as you can imagine this site is not all about them! (Click for the origins of the hyphenation.)

Instead this site is for anyone who is investigating their Cumbrian family history, and contains transcripts of documentation handed down over a period of four centuries centred on parcels of land at Little Corby in Cumberland, and coming primarily from my paternal grandmother's family - the Irwins/Irvings of Hallfoot (Kirklinton) and Little Corby (Hayton).

The main family name is Irving/Irwin, but Graham, Harding and Reed also occur frequently, and all appear with different spellings, sometime varying in the same document. Some of the documents raise more questions than they answer, the Last Will & Testament of Henry Langhorne for example, and particularly letters between various members of a Graham family - how did they come into the Irwin family's possession?

The documents were transcribed from the originals (which were deposited with the Cumbria County Archive during the 1980s) by my mother after my father's death in 1981 and are grouped in two main areas:

  • Document Catalogue

    A catalogue of all the transcribed documents in numerical and date order, with links to the relevant documents

  • Biographies

    Profiles constructed from both family documents and census data, arranged alphabetically

Sources are acknowledged, together with websites which I found useful, on the Links page.

If you have any queries or comments, or can identify any of the individuals as ancestors or relatives of yours, please contact webmaster@irwin-carruthers.co.uk


Irwin-Carruthers: My grandparents, who married in 1896, took my paternal grandfather's surname Carruthers,  and all four of their sons were registered at birth with that surname, but with my paternal grandmother's surname Irwin as a second given name. At some point after 1905 the last two names of the sons (but not of the parents) became hyphenated. It may well have been that the change stemmed from a need to re-assert the family's Cumbrian roots as the parents moved further away from the county of their birth.