Early Dollin Family Trees
in Dorset

Early Dollin Family Trees in England > Dorset

An important family of Dollins lived in Lyme Regis, Dorset, in the 1700s and 1800s. This family's ancestors originally came from Ilminster, Somerset. A number of Dollin families in other counties came from this Lyme Regis Dollin family.

lyme regis

Above: The old town of Lyme Regis on the English Channel in southern England

More photos of Lyme Regis

We thank Anita Greene for her valuable insights into this tree. Other important information on this family was supplied by Mary Godwin and Graham Davies from the Lyme Regis Museum in Lyme Regis, Dorset, UK. Also see the detailed information on the Dearnley family website

Some details from the above sources, combined with data from our own research are as follows:

Eli Dollin (senior)
b1783; d 1851

Born in Ilminster, Somerset. Son of James and Betty Dollin.

Married Elizabeth Quick in 1808 in Lyme Regis, Dorset.

Elizabeth Dollin was living in Lyme Regis with her sons, Eli, William and John in 1841. In 1861 'Betty' Dollin was living with her daughter in law, Elizabeth, and her grandchildren in Lyme Regis.

Eli Dollin Senior died in 1851 aged about 68 and Elizabeth Dollin died in 1873 aged 89.

Children of Eli Dollin and Elizabeth Quick

Elizabeth Dollin - b 1808
James Dollin - b 1811; married Elizabeth Hoare in 1834 in Lyme Regis
Samuel Dollin - b 1812; d 1832
Ann Dollin - b 1815; died in infancy
Susan Dollin - b 1817; married William Porter in 1840
Eli Dollin - b 1819; married Martha Carswell Porter in 1841 in Axminster
William Dollin - b 1822
John Dollin - b 1825; married Matilda Fox Martin in 1859 in Southampton

James Dollin
b 1811; d 1896

Born in Lyme Regis, Dorset. Son of Eli Dollin and Elizabeth Quick.

Married Elizabeth Hoare (Betsy) in 1834 in Lyme Regis, Dorset.

In the 1840s-1850s James Dollin was a fisherman and the innkeeper for the 'Ship Inn' in the upper part of Coombe Street that was also called Horse Street.

In the Directory of Dorsetshire for 1848, James Dollin was listed as:
'Ship' Coombe Street.

In the 1851 census, James was listed as a fisherman and inn keeper living in Horse Street, Lyme Regis, with Elizabeth and children Susan (aged 12), Mary Anne (7) and Emily (1).

ship inn lyme regis

Above: Les Dollin visiting the Ship Inn in Lyme Regis where James Dollin was an innkeeper in the 1840s-1850s.

Betsy Dollin (nee Hoare) died in 1869 aged 55.

James remarried in 1871 in Axminster. His second wife was a widow, Harriet Moore.

Harriet's previous husband, William Moore used to run a business in the Old Fossil Shop in Lyme Regis. He sold music and pianos as well as fossils and curiosities from this quaint little shop. James and Harriet Dollin carried on the fossil shop business for many years.

In the 1881 census James was listed as a fossilist living with Harriet in Bridge Street, Lyme Regis.

In the 1891 census, James aged 80, was still listed in Bridge Street with Harriet and his occupation was given as 'Fossil Depot'.

In the Directories of Dorsetshire for 1875, 1880, 1885 and 1890, James Dollin was listed as a dealer in fossils at Bridge Street.

Harriet Dollin died in 1892 aged 61 and James Dollin died in 1896 aged 85.

Children of James Dollin and Elizabeth Hoare

Elizabeth Catharine Dollin - b 1835; married Henry Littlejohn in 1858 in Bath.
Susan Margaret Dollin
- b 1838/9; died 1857
Ann Elizabeth Dollin - b 1842; died in infancy
Mary Anne Dollin - b 1843/4; married William Richard Small in 1865
Julia Emily Dollin - b 1849/50

The Old Fossil Shop or Fossil Depot, Lyme Regis

Lyme Regis is located on a section of the English coastline famous for its fossils. In the early 1800s, a self-educated local woman called Mary Anning searched for fossils in the unstable cliffs behind the beaches on the eastern and western side of Lyme Regis. There she found astonishing fossilised skeletons of prehistoric reptiles (ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs). See photos. Her discoveries led to a radical change in the scientific theories of the time and earned her the respect of laymen and scientists alike.

The lure of fossils attracted many visitors to Lyme Regis. A particularly well known fossil business in the mid to late 1800s was the Old Fossil Shop. This was located in a very old and quaint, lopsided building at the intersection of Bridge Street and Cockmoil Square in the centre of the town.

Above: Lyme Regis - Past and Present by Jo Draper (2006) presents a fabulous treasurehouse of old photographs of Lyme Regis selected from the Lyme Regis Museum archives. The cover of the book features a photo of the Old Fossil Shop with its huge whale bone standing beside the door.
This book is available from Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk

James and Harriet Dollin ran the Old Fossil Shop from about 1871 to 1895. By the late 1890s the Old Fossil Shop was owned by Thomas Seager but the 'late J Dollin' was still mentioned on the shop sign.

A large shoulder bone of a whale had been found on nearby Church Cliff Beach. For decades this bone had been displayed in front of the Old Fossil Shop, as shown in many photos. It is now preserved in the Lyme Regis Museum.

Above: Les Dollin with the old whale bone that once stood outside James Dollin's Fossil Shop. The whale bone is now in the Lyme Regis Museum.

Unfortunately Bridge Street that ran beside the Old Fossil Shop was extremely narrow - only 8ft 7 inches at one point. It was the only road through the middle of the town and it was far too narrow for motor traffic. So, sadly, in 1913 the well loved Old Fossil Shop and a row of other very old shops beside it were demolished to widen the road.

Elizabeth Catharine Dollin (Eliza)
b 1835

Born in Lyme Regis, Dorset. Daughter or James Dollin and Elizabeth Hoare.

Married Henry Littlejohn (son of Thomas Littlejohn) in 1858 in Bath.

There are records of this family living in Lyme Regis in the 1861 (under the name Littlejohns) and the 1871 census.

Henry Littlejohn had a second marriage later in life. He married Sophia Hoare in 1876 in Axminster. Sophia (born about 1837 in Lyme Regis) was the daughter of Elias and Frances (Fanny) Hoare. Elias was a shoemaker who had a shop in Broad Street.

Children of Elizabeth Dollin and Henry Littlejohn

Susan A (or D) Littlejohn - b 1859
Sarah B Littlejohn - b 1862
Elizabeth Littlejohn - b 1864
Emily Eliza Littlejohn - b 1866
John Thomas Littlejohn - b 1869

Graham Davies of the Lyme Regis Museum gave us a copy of some handwritten information on this family. The author was a child of one of Henry Littlejohn's daughters, so would have been born in the 1880s or 1890s. The author said that his/her mother lived with James Dollin and his second wife, Harriet, in the fossil shop for a while.

When the author was five or six, the mother told a story about her great grandfather, Eli Dollin. She said Eli had refused to answer questions about his life before he was 'brought to England' or about his family. However, when Eli was dying, he gathered his children and told them he was descended from a royal Danish family ('Dolling'). He had been deported from Denmark and landed in Lyme Regis.

Eli Dollin (junior)
b 1819; d 1900

Born in Lyme Regis, Dorset. Son of Eli Dollin and Elizabeth Quick.

Married Martha Carswell Porter in 1841 in Axminster.

Was listed as a tailor living in Lyme Regis in both the 1851 census and the 1861 census.

In trade directories of Dorsetshire, Eli Dollin was listed as:
-- a tailor in Broad Street in 1848, 1851,1852
-- a tailor in Coombe Street in 1855, 1865.

In the 1881 and 1891 census records he was still living in Lyme Regis but was now a coal merchant.

In trade directories of Dorsetshire, Eli Dollin was listed as:
-- a tailor and ship owner in Coombe Street 1867
-- a ship owner in Coombe Street 1871
-- a coal merchant in Coombe Street 1875, 1880, 1885
-- a coal merchant and lodging house at the Cobb 1890
-- a coal merchant and apartments at the Cobb 1895, 1899

Eli Dollin (junior) died in 1900 aged 80.

Child of Eli Dollin and Martha Carswell Porter

Frederick Eli Dollin - b 1848; d c 1910

Frederick Eli Dollin
b 1848; d c 1910

Married Diana Grinter in about 1870.

Frederick Eli Dollin, born 1848, became a ship owner. Frederick Eli Dollin had moved to Plymouth Devon by the 1891 census.

In trade directories of Dorsetshire, Frederick Dollin was listed as:
-- a coal merchant at the Cobb 1871
-- a ship owner at the Cobb 1875, 1880, 1885
-- a ship owner at Coombe Street 1890, 1895

Children of Frederick Eli Dollin and Diana Grinter

Ernest Carswell Dollin - b 1871; d 1899 aged 27
Ada Dollin - b c 1872; d c 1886 aged 13

In the Directories of Dorsetshire, Ernest Dollin was listed as:
-- a coal merchant at the Cobb 1899
-- a coal merchant at 21 Marine Parade 1903

 The Dollin's Schooner called the Majestic

The Dollin family owned a ship called the Majestic. It was a two mast square stern schooner built in 1838 in Newport, Monmouthshire. It weighed 120 tons and its size was length 78.6 feet long, breadth 21.5 feet broad and depth 12.1 feet.

Its registered owners were Eli Dollin and Frederick E Dollin (1869), Eli Dollin (1870) and Frederick E Dollin (1873). This vessel was dismantled at hull and converted into a lighter for harbour use in 1896.
Information courtesy of Lyme Regis Museum.

Above: the harbour at Lyme Regis protected by the famous Cobb sea wall. This is where the Dollin's ship, the Majestic, was moored for many years.

John Dollin
b 1825

Born in Lyme Regis, Dorset. Son of Eli Dollin and Elizabeth Quick.

Married Matilda Fox Martin in 1859 in Southampton, Hampshire.

Was listed as a carpenter in the 1861 census. John and Matilda moved to Southampton, Hampshire, and had eleven children.

Children of John Dollin and Matilda Fox Martin

Susan Dollin - b 1859
Matilda Dollin - b 1862
Frederick Dollin - b 1864
Eli Dollin - b 1866
Albert Dollin - b 1868
John Dollin - b 1870
Anne Dollin - b 1872
Nelly Dollin - b 1874
Harry Dollin - b 1876
Bessy Dollin - b 1878
Tom Dollin - b 1880

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