Showing posts with label Royal Navy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Royal Navy. Show all posts

Saturday, 1 January 2022

Thomas Jones' goes to war in the Baltic 1854-1856

HMS Duke of Wellington in drydock at Keyham, Devonport Dockyard, 5 Mar 1854

Thomas Jones, I imagine, must have been happy to get the equivalent of a desk job - or at least become captain of his own rowing boat - for the Coast Guard Service, which allowed him to stay at home and have some family life. It cannot have been easy to marry in 1844, then go off to sea for three years. He won't have seen his daughter, Mary Ann, until she was around 2 years old. 

At Sutton Bridge, in 1849 and 1850, Thomas and his wife Mary had added two sons and, in Ireland, while at Baltimore, West Cork, they added another daughter and son, in 1851 and 1853, respectively. Then along came the Crimean War

Whether he volunteered or was required to do so, Thomas Jones then joined the crew of HMS Duke of Wellington (1852) on 14 Feb 1854, as a Petty Officer First Class - sufficient to distinguish him from ordinary ratings. (The timing of which means that Thomas could well be 'in the photo' (somewhere inside the ship) at the time the above photo was taken on 5 Mar 1854.)

Thomas' 4th son and namesake was born, in 1854, after he'd sailed, so he won't have met this child either until he was around 2 years old. And, one must remember, Thomas was going to war: no guarantee he ever would. 

On 11 Mar 1854 Duke of Wellington, it's reported, departed Spithead (which infers that she had sailed from Plymouth to Portsmouth during the intervening six days), with the fleet, for the Baltic, where, on 15 Apr 1854 she captured Russian brig Patrioten [Prize Money per London Gazette of 21 Jul 1857].

On 13 Jun 1854 the French fleet joined the British in the Baltic at Baro Sound

On 10 Aug 1854 guns were landed and sent up to the British battery, in charge of men under officers from the EdinburghDuke of Wellington, and Euryalus.

The Bombardment of Sveaborg, 9 August 1855 by John Wilson Carmichael
Duke of Wellington is 2nd from left, with Thomas' previous ship, from his expedition to China during the First Opium WarHMS Belleisle (1819), alongside on the far left.

On 9-11 Aug 1855Duke of Wellington was involved in the Bombardment of Sveaborg, a.k.a. Battle of Suomenlinna, during the Åland War:

"British and French naval forces consisting of 77 ships arrayed for the long-expected battle on 6 August 1855. They formed into a battle line more than 3 km off shore beyond the range of the defenders' obsolete artillery. Three days later the bombardment commenced. It continued for 47–48 hours. All the while, the attacker sat beyond the range of the defenders' guns. The British and French bombarded only the fortress of Viapori and avoided firing at the town of Helsinki directly. While the bombardment caused damage to the structures above ground, including to several gunpowder magazines which exploded, the bulk of the defending forces survived unscathed with their weaponry intact, leading to a draw stalemate." 

After the bombardment, the Anglo-French fleet sent no troops ashore and instead set sail for Kronstadt. Then, with little more fanfare, Duke of Wellington is listed, on 4 Feb 1856, "At Spithead".

Review of the Fleet at Spithead by the Queen, April 23, 1856

On 23 Apr 1856 Present at Fleet Review, Spithead; under Captain Caldwell CB.

From February until April, one can imagine, were several weeks of scrubbing, polishing and painting every component of the vessel until it was 'shipshape'. 

In April 1856 the first recorded evening illumination of the fleet took place.

The Illustrated London News, 26 April 1856 reported the event:

"On Saturday, after some days spent in evolutions of a preparatory nature, the fleet anchored in a stately line, with the Duke of Wellington at its head, bearing the Admiral's (Vice-Admiral Sir Richard Saunders Dundas, KCB) ensign." [...] "At the head of this imposing squadron was the Duke of Wellington, her 131 ports shining in the sun, which showed her chequered sides, bright with paint."

"The Queen's yacht, emerging from the surrounding smoke, proceeded rapidly past Fort Monckton, meeting everywhere the same enthusiastic reception, and, having rounded into a position to return down the centre line, entered the squadron of gun-boats, disposed in double rows on each side of her course, and majestically proceeded on her way. She glided past the small vessels of the flotilla, passed steam-frigates of various strength and speed, passed the giant screw line-of-battle ships, till she reached the Duke of Wellington, greeted in all directions by the most enthusiastic cheers." 

What a finale for such a fascinating career. It will have been a proud moment.

Further reading: 

  1. Star of the show: HMS Duke of Wellington (1852)
  2. HMS Duke of Wellington (launched as Windsor Castle, 1852)
  3. Royal Navy ranks, rates, and uniforms of the 18th and 19th centuries
  4. Life at sea in the age of sail

Friday, 31 December 2021

Thomas Jones' in the Pacific Northwest 1844-1846

[A] view of Maitavie Bay, [in the island of] Otaheite [Tahiti], William Hodges 1776

There's a note under entry for the marriage of Thomas Jones and Mary Harty, on 7 Jan 1844, which looks like it relates to this marriage. It's not clear, but seems to say something about a ship sailing. Thomas was, at that time, assigned to HMS Caledonia (1808), as Captain's Guard, however, on 1 Mar 1844, he joined HMS America (1810), again as [part of the] Captain's Guard.

HMS America, a 74-gun third-rate ship of the line, since 22 Feb 1844, had been under the command of Captain John Gordon and, it appears, personal influence - with brothers in the cabinet and the Admiralty - got Gordon this command on the Pacific Station, and "could expect his appointment to prove lucrative". 

Initially, I found scant details of this voyage, other than that "during the rising tensions with the United States over the Oregon boundary dispute, HMS America was dispatched to the Pacific Northwest in 1845"; that circa to Jun 1845, she was reported to be on the California coast and in 1846: was at the Pacific and Otaheite [TahitiStation, until I found Gordon's biography

Also on that voyage was Lieutenant William Peel (later Captain Sir William Peel VC KCB), son of then British prime minister, Sir Robert Peel, 2nd Baronet. Peel had "ship-hopped" to the Pacific, eventually to the frigate America, in which he voyaged to Puget Sound. [Source: Lieutenant William Peel, British Naval Intelligence, and the Oregon Crisis by Barry Gough PDF]

The ship was to give naval support to the Hudson's Bay Company and Peel became involved in a secret mission: to investigate the state of affairs of the besieged British interests at the Columbia River. Record tells us that HMS America arrived off Cape Flattery on 28 Aug 1845. They left Port Discovery on 26 Sep 1845, bound for Honolulu and reached England on 19 Aug 1846.

"As for Captain Gordon and the further voyages of America, it may be observed briefly that after reaching Honolulu and sailing for Mexican harbours he dallied taking on board a lucrative shipment of silver for the Bank of England, from which he stood to gain personally. His superior, Admiral Seymour (Admiral of the Fleet Sir George Francis Seymour GCB, GCH, PC), charged him with dereliction of duty and he was court-martialled on his return to Portsmouth."

These events were, I feel, not without consequences for Thomas Jones' career. 

Thomas stayed on HMS America, but on 1 Oct 1846, obtained a "sideways promotion" to Boatswain’s mate and, quite soon thereafter, on 30 Nov 1846, was made Ship’s Corporal. These promotions coincide with the appointment, on 10 Nov 1846, of Captain Thomas Maitland (Admiral of the Fleet Thomas Maitland, 11th Earl of Lauderdale, GCB) and it probably stands to reason that there would be a clean sweep and changing of the Captain's Guard. It's reported that Maitland commanded HMS America off the coast of Portugal in November 1846, but I've not found any further reference to explain in what capacity. 

Thomas Jones remained Ship's Corporal on HMS America until 20 Oct 1847, after which, he was appointed Coast Guard Boatman on 28 Dec 1847.

Thursday, 30 December 2021

Thomas Jones' Expedition to China 1841-1843

The Port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife before 1900

One-hundred-and-eighty years ago, on 30 Dec 1841, three troop ships, the Belleisle, Apollo and Sapphire, of this Britsh naval expeditionary force, put into the Port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife. They'd left Plymouth Sound on 20 Dec 1841, bound for China, during the First Opium War (or First China War).

The Canary Islands, whose strategic position in the Atlantic, between Europe, Africa and America, then made it a mandatory refuelling stop for ships.

After only just over a month, from 14 Oct 1841 to 21 Nov 1841, aboard HMS Caledonia (1808) - a 120-gun first-rate ship of the line - my 2x-great-grandfather Thomas Jones, had joined the 74-gun third-rate ship HMS Belleisle (1819), in Plymouth, on 22 Nov 1841, as an Able Seaman, but was assigned as Captain's Guard, on 4 Sep 1842, presumably somewhere up the Yangtze, as this was ten days before the force began to withdraw from the area. 

The captain of the Belleisle at that time, who they will have been guarding, was John Kingcome (Admiral Sir John Kingcombe - 1794-1871).

On 18 Nov 1841, the Belleisle had been in Plymouth, being fitted out for sea, and as a troop ship. Two days later, Lieutenants George Winsor. D. Ferguson, J. Risk, and Philip De Saumarez, were appointed. On 28 Nov 1841, they went out to Plymouth Sound. A company of artillery brought to Plymouth by the steamer Alban, embarked on 5 Dec 1841, and the 98th was reported to be embarking shortly. On 7 Dec 1841, the ship's company was paid advance of wages, which will have been useful on their first stop off en route if they were allowed off the ship to enjoy the sights. How many will have availed themselves of the services of the the notorious dock-women of Tenerife, I cannot possibly surmise.

1 Jan 1842 [Belleisle] is reported to have been at Santa Cruz for the last 2 days, with the troop ships Apollo and Sapphire, and schooner Wanderer. The Belleisle arrived Teneriffe (sic) [...] where the officer commanding of the troops, at the request of the locals, allowed the band of the 98th Regt to go on shore and play on the Mole, where comparison was made to Nelson's welcome some 40 years previously, and his unsuccessful attack. The ships took the opportunity to top up with water and fresh provisions, with prices reflecting the demand for 2,500 men on board the ships.

The ships left Tenerife on New Year's Day and continued their voyage. On 2 Feb 1842 the Belleisle, Apollo and Sapphire arrived Rio de Janeiro en route for China with reinforcements. They were there until 28 Feb 1842, when she departed Rio de Janeiro in company with her consorts, for China. On 14 Mar 1842 she arrived at the Cape of Good Hope, in company with the troop ships Sapphire and Apollo and departed for China on 22 Mar 1842. It took them until 2 Jun 1842 before they arrived in Hong Kong, from England, with part of the 98th Regt. On 5 Jul 1842 they were stationed at Chusan (Zhoushan). And from 16 Jun - 29 Aug 1842, made their expedition up the Yang-tse-Keang, to the end of hostilities and signing of the Treaty of Nanking. Following the signing of the Treaty, the force began its withdrawal on 14 Sep 1842; by 6 Oct 1842, the expeditionary force had completely withdrawn from the Yangtze River
"Shanghai was evacuated on June 23rd, and the troops and vessels fell back to Woosung. The expedition into the Yangtsekiang proper was then promptly organised. The European  troops which took part in it were the 18th, 26th, 49th, 55th, and 98th Regiments, with some Royal Artillery and Engineers, the whole being under Sir Hugh Gough, Major-Generals Lord Saltoun, Schoedde, and Bartley, Colonel Montgomerie, R.A., and Captain  Pears, R.E. Besides about forty transports, the following vessels of the Royal Navy and H.E.I. Co.'s marine participated :— H.M.S. Cornwallis, Blonde, Calliope, North Star, Dido, Modextc, Endymion, Clio, Columbine, Ahjerinc, Bellisle (sic), Apollo, Sapphire, Jupiter, Rattlesnake, Plover, Starling, and Vixen, paddle. H.E.I. Co.'s Sesostris, Auckland, Queen, Tenasserim, Nemesis, Phlegethon, Pluto, Proserpine, and Medusa — all paddle steamers. North Star, Modeste, Clio, and Columbine."
HMS Belleisle later as a Hospital Ship in the Crimean War Edwin Weedon, CC BY 4.0
HMS Belleisle, a 74-gun third-rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, launched on 26 April 1819 at Pembroke Dockyard, was converted to serve as a troopship in 1841.

The Captain’s Guard

"In addition to their combat role, Marines also acted as a vaccine of sorts against the infection most feared by ship’s captains: mutiny. Armed with muskets and bayonets, they served as the captain’s personal guard and moved quickly to quell any hint of insurrection on the lower decks. It certainly was not lost on sailors that Marines were billeted between the sailors and the captain’s quarters. Fully armed sentries were posted at key points around ships, including captains’ cabins, powder magazines and spirit lockers. In battle, Marine sentries stood guard at the entrance to the companionways to prevent any less-than-stalwart sailors fleeing to the relative safety of the lower decks." 

It's interesting that Thomas was in a role that was more normally carried out by the Marines. We did wonder if this was because there were no Marines on this troop ship, however, Thomas was also part of the captain's guard on his next two ships, before he then joined the Coastguard service.

Thomas Jones remained as Captain's Guard on HMS Belleisle until 28 Sep 1843. He went back to HMS Caledonia, then under the command of Captain Alexander Milne (Admiral of the Fleet Sir Alexander Milne, 1st Baronet), again as Captain’s Guard, on 29 Sep 1843, in which capacity he was still serving at the time of his marriage to my 2x great-grandmother, Mary Harty, on 7 Jan 1844.

Wednesday, 29 December 2021

Thomas Jones' Cruise off West Africa 1841

An 1850 map showing the Akan Kingdom of Ashanti within the Guinea region in West Africa
Rev. Thomas Milner, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

On 29 Apr 1841, Thomas Jones joined HMS Forester (1832), as an Able Seaman. Whilst there is no image online of Forester, she was a Royal Navy 10-gun Cherokee-class brig-sloop of the same era and ilk as HMS Beagle

"Per a report made to Parliament in 1842, at some time during 1841 [Forester] was involved in combatting the Slave Trade". And just two days prior to Thomas joining this ship, the following entry appears, which certainly explains why they will have suddenly needed men to replace those lost: 
27 Apr 1841 [Forester] proceeded up the River Pongos with the ship's boats to ascertain the state of the slave trade in the river. Early next morning the boats of the Termagant joined the party, and as soon as the flood tide commenced at 7.00 am, they boarded several boats while proceeding up the river to Mrs Lightbourne's slave barracoons, which were burnt. However following an explosion, as they were departing a number of men were killed and wounded, and several went missing, in particular one man who would appear to have found alcohol in the barracoon, which he consumed to excess, and was awaiting punishment.
Forester had arrived at Accra (Kingdom of Ashanti - Ghana), from Whydah (Kingdom of Whydah - now Benin) on 28 Apr 1841, and departed on the 29th on a cruise. (It's only a guess, but I doubt they mean pleasure cruise.) 

Thomas had presumably arrived in Accra on some other vessel, however, there's a gap of some 4 years, from when he was paid off from HMS Sparrowhawk on 4 Feb 1837, until joining Forester in 1841, where no ship assignments are listed for him, so I have [so far] not discovered how he got to Accra.

One theory that's been suggested to me is that, at that time they signed on each voyage rather than permanent navy, so he could well be merchant navy in the intervening time. There is always a danger in accepting a theory, just because it fits, but this time it does, on several levels. One, because that would adequately explain both the gap and provide a means by which he could have got to Accra on a commercial vessel. Also, because, while his son David followed him into the Royal Navy, his son Nicholas had a long career in the Merchant service. It hadn't occurred to me before that both of them could have been following in their father's footsteps. There are, however, at last count over 900 records for Merchant Seamen named Thomas Jones, born around 1817, in the relevant timeframe, so I think finding proof will be, shall we say, 'challenging'.

Being on this cruise does explain why Thomas was not on the Census of 6 June 1841 as he was at sea. Seamen on shore on census night were enumerated in the same way as the general public, in the place where they spent that night. There was no provision made for recording seamen at sea on census night. 

There are no more details of what this cruise aimed to achieve - besides bringing the ship back to England - or where it went either, merely the notice that, on 17 Sep 1841, it arrived Plymouth Sound from the coast of Africa. And on 29 Sep 1841 Plymouth, was paid off, which is the date Thomas left this ship.

Tuesday, 28 December 2021

Thomas Jones' Voyage to South America 1834-1837

HMS Sparrowhawk by William Smyth, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Built by Matthew Warren, Brightlingsea, Essex, launched 20 August 1807 (Sold 1841)

Thomas Jones' naval pension record begins on 11 Feb 1835, when he will have been 18, where he's listed as being on HMS Sparrowhawk (1807) - an 18-gun Cruizer-class brig-sloop - as a Boy 2nd Class. Still on this ship, he is made an Ordinary Seaman on 1 Mar 1835 and an Able Seaman on 1 Aug 1835

After spending the second half of 1833 being fitted out as a brig, on 1 Feb 1834, Sparrowhawk was reported at Portsmouth, expected to sail for the South America Station shortly and departed Spithead for the South American station on 13 Feb 1834. As I don't imagine Thomas was flown out later, I think it safe to assume that the then 17 year old will have left with the ship on this voyage.

Commanding the Sparrowhawk, between 9 Nov 1833 and 4 Feb 1837, was Commander Charles Pearson, veteran of the Peninsular War (father of Lieutenant General Sir Charles Knight Pearson KCMG CB), who was employed, 1830 to 1833, in the Coast Guard at North Yarmouth.

Around 24 Mar 1834, Sparrowhawk touched at Madeira en route for South America. Then on 17 Aug 1834, she rescued the crew of the Mars (en route from Launceston to London, foundered on the Falkland Islands 3 July).

10 May 1835 was at Valparaíso (Chile).

30 Oct 1835 reported to be off the coast between Callao (Peru) and Mexico.

17 Apr 1836 is reported to be calling at Guayaquil (Ecuador) and Coquimbo (Chile), prior to returning to Valparaiso to meet HMS Blonde (1819).

20 Aug 1836 is reported to be due at Valparaiso shortly to relieve HMS Rover (1832), and to sail for Rio de Janeiro and England in Oct.

Thomas remained with this ship until the end of this voyage, on 4 Feb 1837, when he was paid off. Quite a journey for a young man, in those times, when most ag labs never left their village. This may not have been his first trip either - by the standards of the day, he could have been at sea for five+ years already - but, sadly, I don't [yet] have any records of his earlier service as a boy.

Friday, 20 August 2021

Frederick Joseph Archer and Emma Sarah Bridle

The Royal Standard, Wandsworth
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Derek Harper - geograph.org.uk/p/262334
A pub at the corner of Podmore Road and Ballantine Street (the houses on the right). Behind the camera is the embankment of the railway line east of Wandsworth Town station.

Emma Sarah Bridle, eldest daughter of Edwin Symons Bridle and Lucy Lindsey, married Frederick Joseph Archer in Wandsworth in 1902. 

Frederick and Emma had four children, all born in Wandsworth:

  1. Emma Phyllis May Archer born 1902
  2. Leslie Percy William born 3 Oct 1903
  3. Elsie Winifred Archer born 1911
  4. Reginald Charles Archer born 12 Mar 1913

In 1911, Frederick Joseph Archer (30) Coach trimmer, Emma Sarah Archer (30) and two of their children, Phyllis May (8) and Leslie Percy William (7) were living at 8 Calder's Row, Wandsworth. On 28 Nov 1914, Frederick Joseph Archer, enlisted in the Royal Navy for the hostilities. He served, as a mechanic, on HMS Ark Royal from 21 Jan 1915 until 13 Nov 1917, in the Mediterranean - at that time she was supporting the Gallipoli campaign - after which he appears to transfer to the R.A.F. Emma S Archer died in 1918, aged 38.

Frederick J Archer remarried to Edith E B Mullins, in Wandsworth, in 1919. 

In 1939, Fred J and Edith E Archer were living at 107 Deer Park Gardens, Mitcham, with Leslie P W Archer and Reginald C Archer. 

Frederick J Archer died, aged 76, in 1957, in Surrey North Eastern.

Thursday, 19 August 2021

William C J Truscott and Beatrice Gwendolen Kerslake

Beatrice Avenue, Plymouth
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Derek Harper - geograph.org.uk/p/1776659

Whilst neither of these are blood relations, having discovered that Beatrice lost her mother at the age of two and knowing of the tragic circumstances of the death of her half-brother (who was my cousin), I couldn't help wondering, what happened to Lewis William Kerslake's daughter. When the 1921 census is published next year, we may get clues as to who brought her up.

Beatrice Gwendolen Kerslake, daughter of Lewis William Kerslake and his first wife, Beatrice Hoare, married William Clarence James Truscott, son of Willie James Truscott and Eleanor Hilda Warren, in St Thomas, Exeter, in 1933. 

William Clarence James Truscott was born on 24 Dec 1909 and baptised, on 10 May 1910, at St Mark's, Ford, Plymouth. His parents had married, on 11 Mar 1909, at The Anglican Church of Saint James the GreatDevonport, Plymouth. Their marriage certificate shows that Willie James Truscott, Shipwright RN, was the son of James Robert Truscott, a fitter at the RN Dockyard, whilst Eleanor was the daughter of William Henry Warren, Pensioner RN.

HMS Thunderer 1912

Willie James Truscott (b. 7 Jul 1883) enlisted in the Royal Navy on 11 Jul 1899, just after his 16th birthday. He was assigned to HMS Thunderer on 15 Jun 1912 - the day she was commissioned - and remained with this ship right through until 24 Jan 1921, which means, of course, that on 31 May - 1 Jun 1916, Willie James Truscott, Shipwright 1st Class, took part in the Battle of Jutland.

From 25 Jan 1921 to 28 Feb 1922 Willie James Truscott was assigned to HMS Colleen depot ship at Queenstown (Cobh), Ireland - at the same time my grandfather was at this same establishment. Small world. Again. Although, even if they met, they'll have had no idea of a family connection in the future.

Willie James Truscott retired from the Navy on 6 Jul 1923.

There was a strong naval tradition in this family: at the time of the marriage of Eleanor Hilda Warren's parents, William Henry Warren (b. 29 Jun 1857 in Maker, Cornwall) and Jane Ann Pearce, in Stoke Damerel on 8 Nov 1882, the groom was listed as Seaman, HMS Agincourt (1865) - which allowed me to find his naval record from a Boy on 1 Jan 1873 through until 30 Jun 1895). It also lists the bridegroom's father as a Pensioner (unlikely to be anything other than military at that time) and the bride's father, Charles Pearce, as a Seaman.

Could these even be related to Admiral William Truscott (1734 - 1798)?

Bonhay Road houses, Exeter
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Jaggery - geograph.org.uk/p/4698532

In 1939, Beatrice G Truscott was living at 91 Bonhay Road, Exeter, with the couple's two children (still living), while her husband, William C J Truscott was lodging with his uncle and aunt, Alfred C and Phyllis Warren (his mother's younger brother) at 95 Beatrice Avenue, Plymouth. William Clarence James had followed in his uncle's and grandfather's footsteps as an engine fitter.

Beatrice Gwendoline Truscott died in 1974, in Plymouth, aged 65.

William Clarence J Truscott died, also in Plymouth, in 1981, aged 71.

Friday, 13 August 2021

Frederick Southcott and Eliza Harris

Tiverton : Former Belmont Hospital
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Lewis Clarke - geograph.org.uk/p/4587272
Now known as Perreyman Court, this used to be a hospital and workhouse.

Frederick Southcott, son of William Southcott and Temperance Cosway, married Eliza Harris in Tiverton, in 1879. They had five children: 

  1. Lucy Southcott b. 30 Aug 1880, bap. 13 Sep 1880 at St Peter's Church, Tiverton. (Died in the first quarter of 1881, aged 0.)
  2. Alice Southcott b. 22 Mar 1882, bap. 14 Apr 1882 at St Peter's Church, Tiverton. (Died at the beginning of 1885, aged 3.)
  3. Arthur Southcott b. 30 Jul 1883, bap. 9 Aug 1883 at St Peter's
  4. Frederick William Southcott b. 27 Feb 1886, bap. 28 Mar 1886 at St Peter's Church, Tiverton. (Died in the 2nd quarter of 1886, aged 0.) 
  5. Bessie Southcott b. 1889, bap. 12 Feb 1892 at St Peter's, Tiverton.

In 1881, Frederick Southcott (29) and his wife Eliza (25) were living in Kiddles Court, Tiverton - off Fore Street - and he was employed as a Milk Carrier (these listings of Victorian Occupations 'helpfully' lists this as "Someone who carries milk" - no doubt from dairy to customer in a hand cart as shown here.)

However, already on the 1886 baptism, under what is usually the father's occupation, was listed "Inmate of Workhouse". And on Bessie's baptism in 1892, their address was given as Tiverton Union, i.e. Workhouse too. 

In 1891, Frederick, Eliza, Arthur and Bessie had all been Inmates at The Tiverton Union Workhouse. It becomes clear why they were there, as the records explain that Frederick Southcott, former milk carrier, had become "Blind not from birth".

Without buying all the death certificates, it's not possible to know for sure what it was, but clearly something happened within the five years between 1881 and 1886. The fact that two of the children died around the same time, in 1885 and 1886, tends to suggest - to me anyway - that disease, rather than an accident, was implicated. Smallpox was a common killer in nineteenth century Britain, and was responsible for a third of all human blindness. The risk of death after contracting the disease was about 30%, with higher rates among babies.

Unsurprisingly, Arthur went to sea, joining the Royal Navy in March 1899, when he will have been 15½. While Bessie was enrolled in Elmore School in 1899, with her address on the school records once again listed as "Workhouse".

Bessie and her parents were still in the Workhouse in 1901, after which she just disappears. Art Southcott (17), in 1901, was a Boy 1st Class, part of the crew of HMS Nile, while she was the coast guard ship at Devonport

Frederick died in 1906. Arthur served in the Royal Navy until 4 Jun 1908, when he was Invalided, so by 1911, Arthur Southcott (27) was back in the Tiverton Union Workhouse. Eliza was still in the Workhouse in 1911 and died in 1913. 

Utterly heart-breaking that accident or illness had consigned them to what was undoubtedly a miserable existence for the rest of their lives. 

Friday, 30 July 2021

George Burt and Fanny Jerwood

Tiverton : St Peter's Church
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Lewis Clarke - geograph.org.uk/p/1654824

George Burt married Fanny Jerwood on 25 Dec 1884 at St Peter's Church, Tiverton. George Burt's Rank or Profession was given as Sailor. Fanny Jerwood was the daughter of John Jerwood (b. 1830), Labourer and his wife Sarah Davey (who had also married at St Peter's on 31 May 1853). George Burt's father is listed on the marriage certificate as William Burt, Labourer, however, this looks like an error as records suggest George's father was Edward Burt. As his father had died when George was two, he would never have known him.

On 26 Nov 1837, Edward Burt (b. 1816), son of Richard Burt, had married Mary Ann Prescott (b. 1821), daughter of John Prescott and Ann Warren, also at St Peter's Church, Tiverton. In 1841 they were living in Bampton Street, Tiverton with son George Burt (b. 1840). By 1851, Edward Burt (34) Labourer and Mary Ann (30), had added Edward (b. 1842), John (b. 1846), Richard (b. 1848) and William (b. 1851). Living with them was Mary Carter (71) Lodger. 

In 1859, the son George born in 1840, died, aged 19.

George Burt, born 1863, was actually registered as Sidney George Burt.

Their father, Edward Burt, then died, in 1866, in Tiverton, aged 50. 

In 1870, listed simply as George Burt (Sidney is never used again), son of a widow from Bampton Street, he was registered at Heathcote School.

In 1871, Mary Ann Burt (50) Widow, Seamstress, was still living in Bampton Street with her children: John (25) Mason's Labourer, Lucy (19) Lace Hand in Tiverton Factory, Charlotte (17) Laundress, James (11) and George (7), both at School. Emily Peters (19) also Lace Hand in Tiverton Factory and her son Berty Peters (2) were Lodging with them. Mary Ann Burt died in 1877, aged 56.

And so, George Burt, born 4 Nov 1863, enlisted in the Royal Navy, at 15, as a Boy 2nd Class on 8 Apr 1879. He served until 1 Nov 1901 and joined the Royal Fleet Reserve on 18 Aug 1902. He was brought back into service on 2 Aug 1914 until 18 Jul 1917, although at shore establishments HMS Vivid (II and III). 

HMS Superb (1875)

In 1881, George Burt (17) Boy 1st Class was with the 1st Class Iron Screw Ship HMS Superb (1875), moored in Valletta (Grand Harbour), Malta.

George and Fanny's only child, Charles Edward Burt, was born on 4 Dec 1887.

In 1891, Fanny Burt (27) with son Charlie (3), were living at 150 Pembroke Street, Devonport, while George was with HMS Amphion (1883) in the Pacific.

Young Charlie was then enrolled at Heathcote School in 1894 and at that time, his mother's address was Melbourne Street, Tiverton, even though George was predominantly in Devonport in 1894, first with HMS Himalaya (1854) and then at HMS Vivid II, joining HMS Grafton (1892) on 23 Oct 1894.

In 1901, George Burt (38), now a Leading Stoker, was again at HMS Vivid II, before being pensioned on 1 Nov that year. Fanny (37) was living at 2, Wellbrook Street, Prospect Place, Tiverton, with Charles (13) now a Silk lace maker and Sarah Jerwood (70) Widow, Boarder (Fanny's mother.)

Sarah Jerwood having died in 1910, in 1911, George Burt (48) Grocer and dealer, wife Fanny (47) Assisting in the business and son Charles Edward Burt (23) Lace machine hand, were living at 24 Wellbrook St, Tiverton.

George Burt died in Tiverton in 1937, aged 73.

Fanny Burt died in 1938, aged 74.

Tiverton: Wellbrook Street
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Martin Bodman - geograph.org.uk/p/1993212

Thursday, 29 July 2021

Herbert William Proudlock and Dorothy May Shilcock

Paddington Station
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Malc McDonald - geograph.org.uk/p/5120568

Herbert William Proudlock and Dorothy May Shilcock married, in Portsmouth, in 1922. Herbert William Proudlock's birth was registered in Paddington, London, in 1896. There's no mother's maiden name on the registration, so we must assume that his was an illegitimate birth. But, similarly, it hasn't been possible, without the certificate, to even identify his mother. There's no obvious Miss Proudlock born or living locally, so from what I can find out about him, he may well have been found on said station and have a penchant for marmalade.

In 1911, H W Proudlock (14) from Paddington, London, turns up in the household of a F W Rackley (38) General Labourer, at Westborough Road, Maidenhead, Bisham Bray, Berkshire, described as a Foster Son, but employed as a Page Boy. Not surprising then that he goes to sea. 

Herbert William Proudlock (b. 30 Apr 1896) enlisted in the Royal Navy, aged 15, on 9 Feb 1912. On his naval record, his previous occupation, "House Boy" was later crossed out and expressed as Domestic Servant. On 30 Apr 1914, his 18th birthday, he signed up for a further 12 years and spent the First World War doing short tours on a wide variety of ships. On 29 Apr 1936, Herbert was Pensioned. Then on 1 Apr 1938 - no kidding - he was brought back into service again, served through World War II, being finally released on 17 Sep 1945.

Dorothy May Shilcock, meanwhile, was the daughter of Alfred Eli Shilcock and Florence Ada Poat, who married at St Mary's Church, Portsea, on 6 Nov 1902. Dorothy May Shilcock, born 2 Oct 1901, was baptised on 27 Sep 1908 at St Bartholomew's Church, Southsea (no longer standing?), along with her sister Rosa Louisa and brother Alfred Eli, who had been born on 10 Aug 1908. In 1911, the family, living at 3 Addison Road Southsea, Portsmouth, consisted Alfred Shilcock (38) Engine Fitter, Florence (31), Dorothy (9), Rosa (7), Doris (5), Alfred (2) and Ernest (0). (Although they listed the boys first.)

Herbert and Dorothy had three sons:
  1. Frederick William Eli Proudlock b. 5 Nov 1923
  2. Stanley Victor Proudlock b. 25 Dec 1928
  3. (Further son born 1934 may be still living)
In 1939, Dorothy M Proudlock was living at 75 Lovett Road, Portsmouth with her three sons, while her husband was at sea. Frederick had become a Shop Assistant at a Pawnbroker. (Frederick died, in Portsmouth, in 1997).

Herbert William Proudlock of 34 St. Chad's Avenue, North End, Portsmouth, died on 19 Feb 1970. Dorothy May Proudlock died on 20 Jul 1974.

Wednesday, 28 July 2021

Patrick Michael Clancy and Rosina Kathleen Stone

Looking towards the chapel at Milton Cemetery, Portsmouth
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Basher Eyre - geograph.org.uk/p/1070654

Rosina Kathleen Stone, youngest child of Tom Stone and Margaret Knapman, sister of Frederick Thomas Stone, married Patrick Michael Clancy (b. 16 Sep 1904), son of Patrick Michael Clancy and Elizabeth Flynn, in Plymouth, in 1926. 

In 1901, the bridegroom's father, Patrick Michael Clancy (25), Stoker, from Whitegate, County Cork, was aboard HMS Renard (1892) (an Alarm-class torpedo gunboat), in Devonport, while his wife Lizzie Clancy (27) was boarding at 14, Second Avenue, Devonport along with her two eldest children, Julia Kathleen Clancy (b. 1899) and Mary Elizabeth Clancy (b. 1901).

None of the Clancy family turn up anywhere in the records of 1911.

Patrick Michael Clancy had joined the Royal Navy on 16 Mar 1920, when he was aged 15, as a Boy 2nd Class, he became an Able Seaman on his 18th birthday, 16 Sep 1922, and a Leading seaman by the time of his marriage.

Patrick and Rosina had two children:
  1. Theresa Margaret Clancy born 28 Aug 1927, in Devonport
  2. Patrick Michael Clancy born 1929, in Portsmouth
Yet again, this family seemingly evade the 1939 Register. However, on 1 Sep 1939, Patrick was assigned to HMS Renown, with which he stayed for more than three years. On 10 Mar 1944, he was promoted to Chief Petty Officer and assigned to HMS Cyclops. Patrick Michael Clancy was invalided in June 1945 at Royal Naval Auxiliary Hospital, Southport. He died on 18 July 1946, aged 41, presumably as a result of injuries sustainedChief Petty Officer Patrick Michael Clancy, Son of Patrick Michael and Elizabeth Clancy; husband of Rosina Kathleen Clancy, of Paulsgrove, Portsmouth, is buried in Portsmouth (Milton) Cemetery, Plot M. Row 17. Grave 55.

Then Patrick Michael Clancy, son of Mrs. R. K. Clancy, of Milton, Portsmouth, Constable in the Palestine Police Force, died, on 4 Jun 1947, aged 18. He was buried at Haifa (Sharon) British Civil CemeteryHaifaIsrael, Plot 4. Grave 6.

Both father and son's gravestones are united by the same inscription:
 
"IN THE SHELTER OF THY SACRED HEART, DEAR JESUS, MAY HE REST".

In 1951, Rosina K Clancy remarried, in Portsmouth, to a Cyril West. 

Rosina Kathleen West died in 1979, aged 76, back in her native Plymouth.

Friday, 23 July 2021

Cyril Burrows and Lilian May Manley

Devonport Dockyard - the ropewalk
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Chris Allen - geograph.org.uk/p/3074721

Lilian May Manley, daughter of William Manley and Jessie Hammacott, married Cyril Burrows, son of Henry Burrows and Mary Cock, in Devonport in 1921.

Cyril's parents had married, in Bodmin, in 1895. Mary Cock, daughter of Johnathan Cock and Mary Phillips, was baptised on 21 Aug 1871, in Luxulyan, Cornwall. Henry Burrows, born 13 Dec 1873, was a Blacksmith, listed as born in Whitehouse, Bodmin, Cornwall. Henry Burrows joined the Royal Navy as an Armourer on 19 Apr 1893. Exactly the same career path as Lilian's father.

On 9 Mar 1898, until 15 Dec 1899, Henry Burrows was assigned to HMS Hibernia (1804). Hibernia was flagship of the British Mediterranean Fleet from 1816 until 1855, then she became the flagship for the Royal Navy's base at Malta, stationed in Grand Harbour. On the English 1911 Census, Cyril Burrows is listed as "Malta Resident". What they mean is, he was born in Malta

In 1901, the family were living at 64, Admiralty Street, Devonport, but in 1911, while Mary and the children were residing at 9 Highland Terrace, St Budeaux, Devonport, Henry Burrows was with HMS Monmouth (1901), of the China Squadron, at Colombo (Ceylon, now Sri Lanka). 

Henry Burrows was Invalided on 13 Apr 1916 with the reason given as paralysis agitans, a less common name for Parkinson's disease

In 1939, we find Cyril Burrows (b. 2 May 1899) Inspector Of Shipwrights, with wife Lilian and son Cyril Maynard Burrows (b. 24 Apr 1921) Apprentice Shipwright, living at 35 Oakwood Road, Portsmouth. Cyril's Admiralty appointment was reported in the Portsmouth Evening News of 21 July 1939.

Cyril Burrows died, in Portsmouth, in 1979, aged 80.

Lilian May Burrows died, in Portsmouth, in 1989, at 90.

Cyril Maynard Burrows died, also in Portsmouth, in 2001, also aged 80.

Wednesday, 21 July 2021

John Martin Mullarkey and Elsie Aitchinson

Church of St Jude, Plymouth
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © N Chadwick - geograph.org.uk/p/5813993

John Martin Mullarkey, son of Anthony Joseph Mullarkey and Maria Gloyne, married Elsie Aitchinson (b. 7 Feb 1890), daughter of John George Aitchinson and Emma Bolt, at St Jude's Church, Plymouth on 9 Jul 1918.

Elsie's parents had married, on 29 Jun 1885, at Charles Church, Plymouth. John George Aitchinson of 16 Guldford Street, Plymouth was a Shipwright, son of John George Aitchinson, Petty Officer RN. Emma Bolt was from a few doors down at 10 Guildford Street and her father, John Bolt, was a Shoemaker.

Elsie was baptised, as an adult, on 19 Nov 1905, at Charles Church, Plymouth.

In 1911, the family was living at 59 Knighton Road, Plymouth, with John George Aitchinson (50) employed as a Shipwright at H M Dockyard, wife Emma (52) and both Elsie (21) and her younger sister Lilian (17) described as Tailorists.

John Martin Mullarkey (20) had enlisted in the Royal Navy on 19 Jun 1909 and in 1911, was bobbing about in Malta Harbour on HMS Medea

HMS Tiger in 1917

On 31 May - 1 Jun 1916 John Martin Mullarkey was serving as a Leading Stoker on HMS Tiger at the Battle of Jutlandthe largest naval battle of the First World War. Tiger was hit a total of 18 times during the battle, suffering 24 men killed and 46 wounded. John Martin Mullarkey stayed with Tiger until 30 Sep 1921.

Spoiler alert: John is the first of three family members (that I know of), all from the same street, to have been at the Battle of Jutland. All three survived.

After leaving the Royal Navy on 1 Apr 1928, John Martin became a Merchant Seaman. John's naval record says that he had a scar on his left thigh (inside) and a heart tattoo on his right forearm. His Merchant Navy record states that the top of his left index finger was crushed. It doesn't say when, where or how. 

John and Elsie Mullarkey had three children:
  1. John George Anthony Mullarkey b. 1 Oct 1920. John George Anthony Mullarkey married Lilian K Clarke in 1958. Born Lilian Kathleen May Hood on 18 Apr 1914, Lilian was probably a widow at the time of this marriage. She had previously married Herbert J Clarke in 1933 and potentially brought with her four children from this marriage. John George Anthony Mullarkey of 15 Dundas Street, Stoke, Plymouth, died on 8 Nov 1974. Lilian Kathleen May Mullarkey died on 25 Jun 1991.
  2. Lilian Kathleen Mullarkey b. 15 Oct 1922. In 1945, Lilian Kathleen Mullarkey married William George Matthews. They appear to have had one child later that year. Lilian Kathleen Matthews died in 1996.
  3. Martyn Mullarkey b. 15 Aug 1930. In 1951, Martyn Mullarkey married Margaret A Pepper and they appear to have one child in 1952. Martyn Mullarkey died, in Plymouth, in 2005.
In 1939, living at 54 Ocean Street, Plymouth, John M Mullarkey's occupation is described as "Greaser Cable Ship Maker Louisa Mackay" (Louisa Mackay was the name of his ship). Son John G A was a Turner And Fitter Apprentice; Lilian K a Shop Assistant and Martyn was at school. Living with them was John G Aitchinson, Retired Shipwright, Widowed (who died in 1941). 

Elsie Mullarkey died in Plymouth, in 1963, aged 73.

John Martin Mullarkey died the following year in 1974.

Anthony Joseph Mullarkey and Maria Gloyne

Wyndham Street West, Plymouth
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Derek Harper - geograph.org.uk/p/1777663
With the spire of the 
Roman Catholic cathedral of St Mary & St Boniface

Anthony Joseph Mullarkey, son of Martin Mullarkey and possibly Catherine Loughlin, married Maria Gloyne, daughter of Samuel Pascoe Gloyne and Emma Jane Coombes, on 20 Nov 1887 at the Roman Catholic cathedral of St Mary & St Boniface, Plymouth. On his Royal Marines record, Anthony Mullarkey (b. 5 Dec 1864), said he was from Garston, Liverpool. He had enlisted, in Liverpool, on 5 Jun 1883, his previous job being a Labourer and professed to be Roman Catholic. However, in 1881, Anthony Mullarkey (16) General Labourer, had been boarding at 8, Hughes Street, Garston, along with his father, Martin Mullarkey (40) and Michael Mullarkey (7). All three were said to be from Ireland.

Anthony Joseph Mullarkey and Maria Gloyne had three children:

  1. John Martin Mullarkey b. 10 May 1890
  2. Anthony Charles Mullarkey b. 12 Jan 1893
  3. Kathleen Mullarkey b. 17 Jan 1896
All three were baptised, on 1 May 1896, at St Paul's, East Stonehouse - The Anglican Church, situated at the southern end of Durnford Street. The family's address on these baptism records was listed as 8 Admiralty Street, East Stonehouse, with their father's rank listed as Private RMLI.

Victualling yard at the Royal Naval Dockyard, Bermuda
Captain-tucker, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

On 20 Dec 1895, Anthony had joined HMS Terror (1856) (a 16-gun iron screw floating battery launched in 1856. She became the base ship at Bermuda in 1857), from which he was Discharged Dead (at 32) on 2 Dec 1896. 

In 1901, Maria Mullarkey (36), Seamstress, Widow, was still living at 8, Admiralty Street, East Stonehouse with John (11), Charles (8) and Kathleen (5).

In 1911, and still at 8, Admiralty Street, East Stonehouse, Maria Mullarkey (48) was in receipt of a pension from the Admiralty. Anthony Charles Mullarkey (18) Bugler RMLI was home on leave and Kathleen Mullarkey (15) was an apprentice tailoress to a Military Tailor. John Martin Mullarkey (20) was serving with the Royal Navy on HMS Medea (HMS Medea (1888) was a Marathon-class second class cruiser launched in 1888 and sold in 1914), anchored in Malta Harbour.

Maria Mullarkey died in East Stonehouse in 1924, aged 61.

Monday, 19 July 2021

Frederick Thomas Stone and Kathleen Mullarkey

St Paul Street, Plymouth
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Derek Harper - geograph.org.uk/p/2333440

Frederick Thomas Stone, of 9 St Paul's Street, East Stonehouse, Plymouth, second son of Tom Stone and Margaret Knapman, married Kathleen Mullarkey, tailoress, of 8 Admiralty Street, East Stonehouse, Plymouth, only daughter of Anthony Mullarkey and Maria Gloyne, at the King Street Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, on 4 Aug 1923. Witnesses to the marriage were the bridegroom's first cousin, Charley Stone (undoubtedly best man); Rosina Kathleen Stone, the bridegroom's younger sister (bridesmaid perhaps), and Anthony Charles Mullarkey, the bride's brother, who presumably gave her away. At the time of his marriage, Frederick Thomas Stone gave his rank as Leading Signalman, H.M.S. Sandhurst. Both the bridegroom's father, Tom Stone, and the bride's father, Anthony Mullarkey (both deceased), had been Royal Marines, as were Charley Stone and Anthony Charles Mullarkey. That saved 'em on lounge suits! 

Frederick and Kathleen had two sons: 

  1. Frederick Anthony Stone born 25 July 1924
  2. Douglas John Stone born 27 Sep 1927
Frederick Thomas Stone had enlisted in the Royal Navy as a boy of 15, on 6 Jul 1907 and served until 31 March 1924. He then re-entered on 30 May 1932 as a Signalman. As he was still living in Royal Naval Shore Signal Station Cottages in 1957, I think it safe to deduce that he served through both World Wars.

His naval record lists among his tattoos: an anchor on his right forearm; two female figures and a bird on his right forearm; Eagle, snake, Ensign, rose and thistle. Clasped hands and heart and 8 dots on left forearm. 

Royal Hospital School Bell Tower
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Roger Jones - geograph.org.uk/p/2513717

In 1939, Frederick A Stone was a boarder at the Royal Hospital School (usually shortened as "RHS" and historically nicknamed "The Cradle of the Navy"). I've been unable to locate Frederick Thomas, Kathleen or son Douglas in 1939.

On 11 Aug 1943, Douglas J Stone appears on a "List or Manifest of Aliens Employed on the Vessel as Members of the Crew" of the Marquesa, as an apprentice on his 1st trip to New York. He was 16, 5' 4" and 123lbs.

Part of the old Buckland Hospital, Coombe Valley Road
cc-by-sa/2.0 - © John Baker - geograph.org.uk/p/5105714

Frederick Thomas Stone of 5 Royal Naval Shore Signal Station Cottages, Old Folkstone Road, Dover, died on 11 Nov 1957, aged 65, at Buckland Hospital, Dover, leaving effects of £960 12s 5d to Frederick Anthony Stone, Chief Electrician R.N. and Douglas John Stone, Laboratory Assistant. As she isn't a beneficiary, Kathleen had presumably pre-deceased her husband, but I've [so far] been unable to identify the relevant record of her death.

Douglas John Stone died in 1985 in Kingsbridge, Devon. He will have been 58.

Frederick Anthony Stone died, also in 1985, on 19 Mar, in Newport, Wales. He will have been 60. There is a record of a marriage of a Frederick A Stone in Newport, in 1950, which might explain his presence there. 

Please expect changes to these pages from time to time as we find new data or new records become available. You may like to use Follow That Page, a change detection service that sends you an email when web pages have changed.

If you're related to any of the people written about, I'm guessing you'll recognise them from the surnames. If you are, do please get in touch.