The Watt family are first known in Stafford in 1844. Some of the family integrated but most proved to be long-term transients in the Stafford area. They came from Ulster and were Protestants.
William Watt was born in Bannbridge, Co.Down, in 1812. He began work as a gardener and coachman and in the early 1830s married Phoebe Ann (surname unknown), a local woman who had been born around 1815. Their first child, David, was born in Co. Down in 1834 but in the mid-1830s William got a job with the new Liverpool police force. The couple had three more children in Liverpool but William then moved to the new Staffordshire force in 1844. He became the local constable in the Weeping Cross/Baswich area. They lived a steady life and were respected in the locality but there were incidents that suggest William pushed the rules in his younger years. They had four more children in the Stafford area. In 1876 William retired from the police after nearly 33 years service. The Watt’s children intermarried largely with local people but most subsequently left the locality, though there were many descendants in the mid- and east-Staffordshire area. Phoebe Ann died in 1880 but William’s death has not been traced. He presumably went to live with one of his children elsewhere.
The history of families like the Watts do not conform to the common image of Irish immigrants and their story is often overlooked.