William Smith (William 1)
William Smith (1) from was from Walsingham. He was resident in Dersingham as early as 1837 from the Poll Book but evidence we have found so far suggests he was the first publican here in 1858. He was also a pig dealer and farmer. We also find him here in the 1861 Census, 1864 White's, 1871 Census and 1877 Harrod's Directory. A William Smith was buried at Dersingham Church on 17th October 1876 aged 65 and this aligns as he was born about 1812. However, in 1871 he gave his age as 54 which is wrong. So it is very likely that William Henry Smith, William (2), his nephew, took over around the time of his death.
I note that in 1874 a John Smith is at the Dun Cow but it appears there is no connection between them.
William Henry Smith (William 2)
William Henry Smith, or William (2), was born in Dersingham and was living at the White Horse in 1871; his father (William 1's brother) was also living here at that time. William 2 will have taken over from his uncle, William 1, at the age of about 30 in 1876. He is also here in 1881 with sister Eliza Smith (32) and baseborn nephew Harry.
Robert Jenks Rolfe
Source Kelly's Trade Directory 1883
William Henry Smith
William (2) returns and is the 1883 and 1890 White's Directory, he also appears later in the 1896 Post Office Directory. William (2) died in Dersingham on February 12th 1935 in his 85 year. His wife, Rosanna, passed away at the age of 91 on February 1st 1954. (Their grave is at Section B, Plot 34 of the churchyard).
George Kiddle from Middleton married Eliza Louisa Smith, sister of William Henry Smith 2. He was living here in the 1881 and had his name over the door in 1892, 1896 and 1900 Kelly's.
Charles Henry Sayer
Charles is here aged 38 in the 1911 census.
In the Lynn Advertiser dated 9th September 1910 their appeared a record of the Petty Session Reports at Grimston. "On Monday Charles Henry Sayer, innkeeper, Dersingham, summoned for keeping a carriage without a licence on 11th May. Fined 20s with 10s costs or 14 days."
He also appears in the 1908 and 1912 Kelly's.
Frederick William Hartley
Frederick was aged 65 in 1911, he only appears here in 1916 Kelly's
I have only found Frederick Houchen here in 1922 Kelly's.
His occupancy was found on the marriage certificate for his daughter, Elsie Eleanor Secker to Frederick Harry Batterbee, on 22 January 1927 in Dersingham Church.
Henry and Harry Chester
1929 - 1962 Henry is to be found here in 1929, 1933 and 1937 Kelly's and in the 1939 Register with his wife Mabel Annie Rolfe. When Mabel died in 1982 she was living at 17 Post Office Road. Harry Chester was also Treasurer for Dersingham Rovers Football Club in at least 1931-32 (from a photograph).
I have a problem, Dick Melton (below) advises me that Henry Chester handed over to a son Harry Chester in 1937 but there is no evidence of Harry in the 1939 Register; neither is there a record of any children born to Henry and Mabel. In 1939 Amelia's mother (Amelia Rolfe, nee Carbis) is living with them at the White Horse, she died here in 1950. To add more confusion, in both the 1968 and 1975 records the only Chester living in Dersingham was a Harry Chester at 7 Hunstanton Road yet both Henry and Mabel died here in 1975 and 1982 respectively and are buried here; they must have lived elsewhere. It would appear that Harry was still at the pub building; when was it demolished? Today, 'Cutting Heads' and 'Geoffrey Collings Estate Agents' are at 7a and 7b Hunstanton Road; the address for Boots etc is Jubilee Court .
……. More to be found!