CFHS code : AS132

Parish : All Saints

Inscription : CHARLES HENRY COOPER d [2]1 March 18[66] aged — ——– JANE wife of CHARLES HENRY COOPER d date & age illegible HARRIET ELIZABETH daughter of CHARLES HENRY and JANE COOPER d date & age illegible ELIZABETH THOMPSON widow of JOHN THOMPSON of Prickwillow d 12 August 18[58] aged —

Monument : Celtic cross/Kerb stones

Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey

Lat Lon : 52.203395, 0.1366895 – click here for location

This monument is to the west of the western path. The inscription is now hard to read. Photo 2016
Cooper and Thompson monument  2016


This monument, in the parish area of All Saints, is to the west of the western path. The inscription is now difficult to read.


CHARLES HENRY COOPER died 21 March 1866 aged 58

JANE wife of CHARLES HENRY COOPER died Nov 1890 aged 85

HARRIET ELIZABETH daughter of CHARLES HENRY and JANE COOPER d date & age illegible

ELIZABETH THOMPSON widow of JOHN THOMPSON of Prickwillow d 12 August 18 58] aged 82

NB The parish record was used to fill in the dates that are now illegible.

Jane Mary Cooper died Dec 1862 age 20 is also buried here but no inscription has been found.

Charles Henry Cooper (20 March 1808 – 21 March 1867)

Charles was born in Great Marlow and was the eldest son of lawyer Basil Henry Cooper and his wife Harriet (née Shoppe).  He moved to Cambridge in 1822 to study Law, but it is thought that this was arranged privately, rather than via a University degree. He married Jane Thompson on 17 September 1834 in Ely and the couple had four children: Thompson (1837-1904), Harriet Elizabeth, Jane Mary and Dr. John William (1845-1906). The family lived at 29 Jesus Lane where Charles was a solicitor, borough coroner (1836-) and town clerk of Cambridge (1849-1867).

Although he was an able lawyer, he was better known for his writing and journalism.  He wrote extensively about the history and topography of Cambridge and also wrote biographies of many important people related to the University. In 1841 he published his first edition of ‘Annals of the University and Town of Cambridge’.  It was printed in five volumes and had taken Charles 14 years to research and was said to cover ‘an immense body of facts, connected with the academical and general history of Cambridge, from the earliest period to the present day’. It was an ambitious publication and Charles found some opposition to its printing.  In 1858 he published the first volume of  ‘Athenae Cantabrigienses’ which was written jointly with his eldest son Thompson Cooper. It contained the biographies of notable Cambridge graduates.  The first volume covered 1500-1585, the second volume 1585-1609 and the third volume had been written but not published by the time Charles died in 1866.  He also contributed to news publication such as ‘Gentleman’s Magazine’ and ‘Notes and Queries’ through his life.

Charles died at Jesus Lane aged 58 years old and was buried at Mill Road Cemetery on 26 March. His friend John Mayor wrote an obituary in the Cambridge Independent Press which said ‘the void which Mr Cooper has left behind him cannot be filled.  Cambridge never had, nor will have a town clerk so entirely master of its achives, or more devoted to its interests…we have all lost perhaps the most perfect example of unflagging diligence which Cambridge has seen during this century.  One need not be a prophet to foretell that 200 years hence Mr Cooper’s works will be more often cited than any other Cambridge books of our time’.

Jane Mary Cooper (25 July 1842 –  17 December 1862)

Jane died at Jesus Lane aged 20 years old.

Jane Cooper (née Thompson) (1805 – 15 November 1890)

Jane was the daughter of John and Elizabeth Thompson and was born in Ely. She was baptised in the town on 18 July 1805 and married Charles Cooper when she was 29 years old.  She remained living at Jesus Lane after she was widowed with daughter Harriet and died there in November 1890 aged 85 years old.

Harriet Elizabeth Cooper (1840 – 9 March 1909)

Harriet lived at Jesus Lane with her parents and was still living there in 1901.  She then moved to live with her sister-in-law Charlotte Cooper and niece Beatrice at 6 Gresham Road.  Harriet died at Gresham Road aged 68 years.

Elizabeth Thompson (c.1776 – 12 August 1858)

Elizabeth was the wife of John and mother of Jane Cooper.  She was born in Ely and lived in Prickwillow when married. Prickwillow is a small hamlet five miles east of Ely.  By 1851 she was widowed and living at 8 Jesus Lane and was described on the census as a ‘proprietor of houses and annuitant’. She died at Jesus Lane aged 82 years.



Newspaper archives

by Claire Martinsen

[If you have any further  information about this family, please contact us at]

Charles Henry Cooper; Harriet Elizabeth Cooper; Jane Cooper; Jane Mary Cooper; Elizabeth Thompson