FRED OSMAN
Lower Bartley

Fred Osman (pronounced Osman as in Woe not Osman as in Was) was born in November 1848, the eldest son of William and Sarah Osman of Bartley, in the New Forest, Hampshire. (William was a Timber Hewer and had at least four siblings).

Fred married his wife, Fanny, in 1875 at Netley Marsh Church and they lived in a little cottage called "The Nook" in White House Lane, Bartley (now known as Bourne Road.) They had seven sons and a daughter.

Fred was a General Labourer mainly working in the Forest and is it possible that he spent time at sea. At this moment little else is known about him.

He sang Dr Gardiner five songs on the 3rd November, 1908 – All Fours, Jovial Butchers, Willie O'Winsbury, Lovely On The Water, The Fair Maid of Bristol.

He died in October 1925 aged 77 and is buried in Netley Marsh churchyard.

Fred Osman.
Photo taken c.1924
One of a set of postcards showing Charcoal Burning in the New Forest during World War 1.
Fred Osman can be seen on far left leaning on a stick.

Thanks to the Wingham family of Copythorne for information and photos

George Gardiner visited the Bartley/Cadnam/Lyndhurst area of the New Forest with J.F. Guyer in 1906 and again in 1908 and collected a large number of songs. In Bartley they collected 39 songs, in Cadnam 9 songs and in Lyndhurst 51 songs.

Note: Bartley is approx 1 km from Cadnam and 10 km from Lyndhurst. Even today in the depths of the Forest it would be very difficult to be sure which you were nearest to.
In the period Gardiner was collecting people such as Fred Osman and Harry Purkiss were involved in charcoal burning, and similar jobs and when engaged in such activities often lived in temporary dwellings deep in the Forest.
The trade was practised by the Purkiss family at Castle Malwood right up to the end of last century when another local family the Tinsleys, took over most of the production. Now, however, the old encampments at Castle Malwood ( near Stoney Cross) and Mark Ash have disappeared, and a new era of charcoal burners hold sway, their mode of life more in keeping with the 21st century.

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