Keighley

Military Monday – Arthur Dawson (1879-1944)

Arthur Dawson is my 1st cousin 2x removed – our common ancestors are my 2x great grandparents John Dawson and Ellen Gawthrop.

Arthur is the brother of Prince Dawson and John Dawson – his parents are John Dawson and Elizabeth Bradley. He was born 18 July 1879 and lived at Steeton with Eastburn about three miles from Keighley, West Yorkshire.

Before I found his WW1 service records I knew that Arthur married Lily Cockshott sometime in Q2 1906 and their marriage is recorded in the Keighley registration district. They had one child – a son, Eric born in 1909.

Arthur enlisted on 30 August 1916 in Keighley and was assigned to 7th West Yorkshire Regiment. His service number is 238029. He was 37 years old. At the time of his conscription he was living at 19 School Street, Steeton with Eastburn. His trade is given as ‘mason’.

The enlistment documents also show that Arthur had previous service in the Royal Engineers.

His service papers provided confirmation of the date of marriage to Lily – 10 April 1906. They also give Eric’s date of birth as 21 October 1909 – so more information for my tree. However his service record through up a bit of surprise. There is another son shown – Alan with a date of birth of 3 March 1911.

I have the 1911 census record for Arthur, Lily and Eric – but no Alan.

I have been able to find a birth for Alan Dawson at the right time and in the right location but no trace of him in the 1911 census. So, I searched for a death and found a record for Alan Dawson who died in Leeds in 1977 with a date of birth given as 3 April 1911.

Could this be the answer to my conundrum?  Maybe 3 March 1911 was incorrect. The 1911 census was undertaken on the night of 2 April 1911. So Alan could have been born the following day and that is why he is not recorded. I’m happy with this solution and have now added Alan to my family tree.

Anyway, back to Arthur and his war service.

It seems that Arthur was at home until 3 January 1917. The following day he embarked for France, returning home again after 105 days on 18 April 1917. There is reference to him serving in the Royal Defence Corps (RDC) – the role of this regiment was to provide security and guard duties inside the United Kingdom.

Arthur was finally discharged on 23 March 1919.

Sunday Snap – Railway Posers?

This is a photograph from my own collection – yet another of the many unidentified subjects.

Across the bottom right corner is the name Bruce Johnston, Keighley.    I can find a couple of references to this firm of photographers on local family history message boards.

The chaps in the photograph are obviously in some sort of uniform.  I think that there are some clues that suggest they are railway workers.

I can read the initials MR on the cap of the man on the right of the photograph.  I suspect that this is the Midland Railway company.  The visible pocket watch chain worn by the man second left indicates to me that he is probably a railway worker.

I don’t recognise anyone in the photograph.  However my grandfather, Joseph Dawson, worked for London, Midland & Scottish Railway company and may well have worked for the predecessor the Midland Railway company.

I am really hopeless at trying to date photographs.  But if there is a connection with my grandfather I guess it would have been taken around the 1920 period and before MR became LMS.

If anyone has any other suggestion I would be happy to hear it.

Ancestor Profile – James Buckley (1838-1896)

James Buckley is my 2 x greatgrandfather.  He was born on 23 April 1838 in Keighley, West Yorkshire.

In the 1841 and 1851 census returns James is living with his parents, Thomas Buckley and Henrietta Buckley (nee Mason) at an address in Fleece Street, Keighley.

James married Sarah Tattersall three days after his 19th birthday on 26 April 1857 at the Parish Church of Bingley.

Bingley Parish Church

By 1861 James and Sarah are living at an address in Green Street, Keighley.  I don’t know  the house number but Green Street is a small unmade road consisting of terrace houses.  James is shown as a “mechanic” in the census return that year and Sarah is described as a “house wife”.

Ten years later in 1871 James and Sarah have moved to Wellington Street, Keighley.  James is still working as a “mechanic” and they have had five children:-

Joseph (1858-1861)

Elizabeth – born 1858

Emma – born 1863 (my greatgrandmother)

Prince – born 1865

Samuel – born 1869

By the time of the next census in 1881 Sarah had died and James had remarried.

I haven’t got Sarah’s death certificate so I don’t know the cause of death but she died at the age of 46 on 24 January 1880.

Later the same year James married Ellen Spedding on 30 October.  They had one daughter, Annie, born in 1882.

On the 1881 census James and Ellen are living at 5 Smith Street, Keighley together with James’s four surviving children from his marriage to Sarah and with William Spedding (84) who is Ellen’s father.

James has had a career change and his occupation is described as “iron fitter”.  Three of his children, Elizabeth, Emma and Prince are working in one or more of the local textile mills.  His father-in-law also worked in the textile mills and is a retired warpdresser.

At some point in the next ten years James had another career change and in the 1891 census he is “landlord and licensed victualler” of the White Bear Inn at Steeton with Eastburn – about three miles outside of Keighley.

I used to have a photograph of James and his family sitting outside the inn but I can’t find it anymore.  The inn has had a recent name change is now called The Eastburn Inn.

Coincidentally in the 1891 census James’s brother Mason was also a licensee at The New Inn, Cononley, about five miles from Steeton with Eastburn.

James died sometime in Q4 of 1896.  I haven’t got a death certificate yet so have no information as to the cause of death.

I have found Ellen Buckley (widow) in the 1901 and 1911 census returns living with her daughter Annie at 1 Thomas Street, Keighley.  Ellen is working as a charwoman in 1901 and Annie’s occupation on both returns is “milliner”.