Sunday’s Obituary

Sunday’s Obituary – Norman Thornton (1912-1937)

Norman Thornton is my 3rd cousin 1x removed. His parents are Thomas Gawthrop Thornton and Ellen Quinliven. Our common ancestors are my 3x great parents Martin Gawthrop and Ann Kighley.

Norman was born in Keighley, West Yorkshire – his birth is registered in the September quarter of 1912.

I don’t have any information about Norman until his marriage to Mary Burland in Sheffield sometime in the September quarter of 1935.

I recently found the following report in the Sheffield Independent on 22 May 1937

Norman Thornton - 22 May 1937.png

GAS SUICIDE

Pincers Used To Turn Bracket Tap

Suicide during a state of depression due to domestic unhappiness, was the verdict given by Mr Alan P Lockwood, Sheffield Deputy Coroner, on Norman Thornton (24), grocers’ assistant, who was found gassed at his home in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Thornton, who was employed at Glossop Road branch of Sheffield and Ecclesall Co-operative Society, had not been at work this week. The branch had been closed Monday and Tuesday, since when Thornton had not been seen.

Thomas Thornton, 63 Ronksley Road, Shiregreen, said that his son was married in September, 1935, but they had not been happy. They had been separated, but came together again five months ago. His son’s wife had been in a convalescent home for the past fortnight.

Police-sergt, W Parnham said he went with the last witness to his son’s house, and by means of a ladder got to the bedroom. He found the young man dead. He had a flexible gas pipe in his mouth, connected to a gas bracket. Near him were a pair of pincers which he had evidently had to use to turn the tap on.

A sad end to a short life and what seems like an unhappy marriage.

I haven’t yet been able to find what happened to Norman’s wife Mary.

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Sunday’s Obituary – Arthur Frederick Lord (1906-1946)

Arthur Frederick Lord is my 4th cousin 1x removed. His parents are Charles Lord and Sarah Lonsdale. Our common ancestors are Isaac Kighley and Ellen Jackson, my 4x great grandparents.

Arthur was born on 20 January 1906 in Rochester, Kent. In the 1911 census he is living at 190 High Street, Rochester.

As far as I can establish Arthur joined the Merchant Navy as a cadet in June 1921. His identity certificate number was 209328 (see below) and he was serving on the SS Gothic Star (Official No. of ship 108793).

Arthur F Lord - Cadet Certificate.png

I don’t have a comprehensive record of Artur’s service in the Merchant Navy but I do know that he obtained a Certificate of Competency as Second Mate on 11 May 1927.

Arthur F Lord - 2nd Mate Certificate.png

On one of his stays back in the UK Arthur married Hazel Walkem sometime in the March quarter of 1934 in Woolwich, London. Later that year their only child, David, was born on 28 December, also in Woolwich.

When the 1939 Register was taken in September that year Hazel and David are living at Lee Mount, Shoreditch Road, Taunton, Somerset. Arthur doesn’t appear in the register – he was presumably away at sea.

Moving forward seven years to 1946 we find Arthur working as a Chief Officer aboard Screw Steamer Rembrandt – a ship built by Lithgows Ltd in Glasgow, Scotland. The Rembrandt was launched as a cargo ship on 30 August 1940, its first owner was the Bolton Steam Shipping Co. Ltd in London.

201608302116290.2. Capetan-antonis ex Rembrandt 1940-8-30

Screw Steamer Rembrandt

Now this is where my story about Arthur Frederick Lord reaches its conclusion. According to the Deaths at Sea Register Arthur disappeared on 19 November 1946 sometime between 11.30am and 4.00pm. He was presumed to have fallen overboard. The latitude and longitude co-ordinates given in the register – Latitude 36º 26´N : Longitude 18º 19´E – put the ship in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea – somewhere between Greece and Malta and North of Lybia.

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In his will Arthur left effects totalling £1241 11s 3d to Albert Leslie Binns, chartered accountant. This was his brother-in-law, husband of his sister Florence May.

Arthur F Lord - Probate.png

Sunday’s Obituary – Joseph Musgrove (1866-1933)

Joseph Musgrove is my great grandfather. He was born on 1 December 1866 in Kendal, Westmorland, to parents Harrison Musgrove and Jane Rooking.

Joseph was the youngest of eight children. He was baptised on 21 April 1867 in Kendal. Less than a year later his father (Harrison) died on 16 April 1868. Then when Joseph was six years old his mother (Jane) died on 12 April 1873.

I guess that Joseph would have been looked after by his older siblings after the death of their parents. And in the 1881 census he is boarding with his eldest sister Agnes and her husband David Hutchinson at Albert Hill in Settle, West Yorkshire.

By the time of the next census on 5 April 1891 Joseph was back in Westmorland working as an agricultural labourer and living on a farm in Duke Street, Holme – about 10 miles south of Kendal.

Just over two years later Joseph married Elizabeth Ann Turner on 12 April 1893 at Settle Register Office.

Not sure what it is about the month of April but all the previous significant events happened in that month!!!

Anyway, Joseph and Elizabeth journeyed south to Clitheroe in Lancashire – stopping off on their way for three or four years at Horton in Ribblesdale, West Yorkshire, where Joseph worked in the limestone quarry. Their first three children were born and baptised here.

At this time the family lived at Foredale Cottages – in the photograph below you can see the cottages on the hillside below the quarry.

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In the 1901 and 1911 census returns Joseph is still working as a limestone quarryman – now at the local Clitheroe quarry.

Over a period of about 20 years Joseph and Elizabeth had ten children:-

John Robert Turner Musgrove – born 2 November 1891
Thomas Musgrove – born cMarch 1894
Florrie Musgrove – born 6 January 1897
Mary Elizabeth Musgrove – born 22 August 1899
James Musgrove – born 9 April 1901
Joseph Musgrove – born cSeptember 1903
Leah Musgrove – born 28 July 1905
Isabel Musgrove – born 12 July 1906
Alice Musgrove – born 23 August 1910
Joseph Musgrove – born 23 October 1912

Sadly Joseph developed stomach cancer and he died at home on 30 September 1933. He was buried at Clitheroe Cemetery on 4 October 1933.

The archives for the Clitheroe Advertiser & Times have recently been added to the British Newspaper Archives website. I just discovered the following obituary.

Joseph Musgrove - Clitheroe Advertiser Sep 1933.png

A further death we have to record is that of Mr Joseph Musgrove, of 28 Russell Street. Mr Musgrove, who was sixty-six years of age, died on Sunday after a brief illness. Since the war Mr Musgrove had carried on business as a general dealer and was particularly well known among the farming community, his business bringing him into contact with farmers at the Clitheroe Auction Mart. A native of Kendal he had lived in Clitheroe for forty years, and for more than twenty years resided in Salford. At one period he was employed as a quarryman at Bold Venture Quarries. He leaves a widow, three sons and five daughters. The interment took place at St Mary’s Cemetery on Wednesday, the Rev S E Harper officiating.

Sunday’s Obituary – Edward Dixon (1910-1939)

Edward Dixon is my wife’s 2nd cousin 2x removed. His parents are William Rylatt Dixon and Sarah Ann Britliff. Their common ancestors are John Britliff and Sarah Rack, my wife’s 3x great grandparents. See previous posts about John Britliff here and here.

Edward was born on 18 May 1910 in Kendal, Westmorland.

At some point between 1910 and 1939 Edward, together with his parents and sister, moved from Kendal to Grantham in Lincolnshire. Edward’s father was employed as a “railway carter drayman” so perhaps he moved with his job.

I have no more information about Edward until the following report in the Grantham Journal on 15 December 1939 about his death.

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RAILWAY GUARD AT HELLIFIELD

Young Grantham Man’s Death

After an illness lasting some six months the death occurred last week of Mr Edward Dixon, son of Mr and Mrs W R Dixon, of 29 Swinegate, Grantham, at the comparatively young age of 29 years.

Deceased was employed as a guard on the LMS Railway at Hellifield, Yorks.

The funeral took place on Monday, a service at the parish church, conducted by the Vicar, Canon C H Leake, preceding the interment in the cemetery, where the last rites were conducted by the Rev C L G Hutchings.

The mourners were:- Father and mother; Miss A Dixon, sister; Miss Shepherd, fiancee; Mr and Mrs s Dixon, Sibsey, Miss Maplethorpe, Lincoln, cousins; Mr J Shepherd, Burnley; and Mr L Huff, representing the LMS Railway at Hellifield.

The floral tributes were sent by father, mother and sister; aunt and cousins at Sibsey; uncle and cousin at Lincoln; Elenor; Mr and Mrs Shepherd, Burnley; Mr and Mrs Felstead; Mr and Mrs Rowland; Mr and Mrs Woods; Mr and Mrs Harrison, Signal Road; Mr and Mrs Bibby, Eliza and Ethel, Skipton; Miss Staniland, and Mrs Golding; fellow members of the LMS Railway at Hellifield; Mr and Mrs Morris; Mr and Mrs Woolmer and family; Mr and Mrs R W Savage; Phyllis; M A and A E Wilson and Miss Odom; Mrs C G Hardy; Mr and Mrs Thomas and Mr and Mrs Williams; Mrs Walters; Mr and Mrs W W Winn; Mrs Raines and family; Miss M E Barkes; Mr and Mrs Dixon, Kirkby Stephen.

Sunday’s Obituary – William Randles (1877-1939)

William Randles is my wife’s 2nd cousin 2x removed. His parents are William Randles and Sarah J Espley. Their common ancestors are James Espley and Martha Silvester, my wife’s 3x great grandparents.

William was the sixth of eleven children born to William and Sarah. His birth is registered in Q1 of 1877 in Stone, Staffordshire.

Sometime in Q3 of 1901 William married Annie Cliff in Newcastle Under Lyme, Staffordshire. They had two sons:-

Reginald – born in 1902
Harold – born in 1906

In the 1911 census William’s occupation is given as “steam roller driver”. He worked in that same job until his death in 1939.

I recently discovered a story in the Staffordshire Sentinel of 26 September 1939 reporting on the inquest into William’s death.

Staffordshire Sentinel 26 Sep 1939.png

A.R.P. WORKER’S COLLAPSE

WHEN GOING ON DUTY

TUNSTALL INQUEST

A Tunstall ARP worker’s fatal collapse was the subject of an inquest conducted by the City Coroner (Mr W M Huntbach) at Tunstall, yesterday, on William Randles, aged 62, of 4, Bath Street, Tunstall, a steam-roller driver.

A verdict was returned in accordance with the medical evidence, that death was due to coronary thrombosis.

Evidence was given that Randles had been employed as a steam-roller driver by the Stoke-on-Trent Corporation for more than 40 years. For the past seven years he had been affected by ill-health, and was recently medically advised not to undertake strenuous work. At 6.50pm last Saturday, it was stated, Randles left his home to attend to his duties as an ARP demolition and rescue worker. In the Tunstall Town Yard he was changing into his protective clothing when he suddenly collapsed in the arms of William Harvey, of 8, Darnley Street, Shelton, another ARP worker.

Randles died before the arrival of Dr Kendall, of Tunstall.

Medical evidence was given by Dr Staub, and a verdict was returned as stated.

Sunday’s Obituary – Hamlet Cocker (1855-1911)

Hamlet Cocker was born sometime in the fourth quarter of 1855. He was baptised on 29 November that year at Royton, near Oldham, in Lancashire.

Hamlet married Grace Greenwood sometime in the second quarter of 1882, the marriage is registered in Oldham. And Grace is my 1st cousin 3x removed. Our common ancestors are Martin Gawthrop and Ann Kighley, my 3x great grandparents.

I have the family in the census returns of 1891, 1901 and 1911 living at 317 Rochdale Road, Royton. Hamlet’s occupation is described as “cotton mill manager”. They had three children – Hannah, Amy Gertrude and Maude. Sadly Amy died in infancy less than a year old in 1885.

Grace was the next member of the family to pass away – she died at the relatively young age of 51 on 29 February 1908.

Incredibly tragedy struck the family again three and a half years later when Hamlet died on 6 August 1911 in “curious circumstances”. His death was reported in the Preston Herald on 9 August 1911.

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DIRECTOR FOUND DROWNED

A SINGULAR FATALITY

Mr Hamlet Cocker, the managing director and salesman of the Woodstock Spinning Company, Royton Junction, and a director of many other cotton companies, was found drowned in curious circumstances. The No. 1 mill of the Woodstock Company was being extended, and Mr Cocker’s body was found in a hole, containing 16 inches of water, in the ground where the work was going on. There was no suggestion of suicide.

At the inquest Mr Cocker’s daughter said that he left home on Sunday morning to visit Woodstock Mill. Mr Granville Tither, the cashier and secretary at the mill, said he concluded that Mr Cocker had been looking to see if the rain had done any damage to the work of extension. The hole was three yards square and two yards deep. He thought that Mr Cocker was seized with dizziness and fell in. He saw him in a fit of dizziness about two years ago at the mill. A police sergeant said he considered that if Mr Cocker had been conscious when he fell in he could have got out of the hole.

The Deputy Coroner said that Mr Cocker was obviously drowned. There was nothing to suggest that he had fallen from any part of the building and there was no suggestion that he had committed suicide.

The jury returned a verdict of found drowned.

In his will Hamlet left effects totalling £8770 3s to his unmarried daughters, Hannah and Maude.

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Sunday’s Obituary – Timothy Eglin (1902-1913)

Timothy Eglin is my 3rd cousin 2x removed. His parents are Thomas William Eglin and Margaret Ann Bancroft. Our common ancestors are John Dawson and Ann Watson, my 4x great grandparents.

Timothy was the fifth of ten children and his birth is registered in the first quarter of 1902. In the 1911 census the family are living at Habergham Eaves near Burnley, Lancashire.

On Christmas Eve 1913 the family were rocked by a tragic accident which ended the all too short life of Timothy. Details of the inquest are reported in the Burnley News of 27 December 1913.

Burnley News 27 Dec 1913.png

BOY’S FATAL FALL – The story of how Timothy Eglin, an eleven-year-old boy met an untimely end at Cliviger, was told at an inquest conducted by the Acting Coroner, Mr D N Haslewood, on Friday morning, at Habergham Farm, Habergham Eaves, Cliviger. Thomas William Eglin, the father, gave evidence of identification, and Mary Eglin, deceased’s four-year-old sister, said her brother had been swinging in the washhouse on Wednesday afternoon, on a rope, which was fastened at one end to the ceiling, and at the other end to the wringing machine. Whilst he was swinging, the machine fell over on her brother’s head. Alice Eglin, an older sister, told of hearing a noise coming from the direction of the washhouse, at 3 o’clock on Wednesday afternoon, and on going there she found the deceased with the top part of the machine resting on his head on the floor. With the assistance of Albert Halstead, she lifted her brother up, and Halstead carried him home. Dr. Hodgson, of Burnley, was sent for, and on arrival he found the boy dead, with the back of his head crushed in, and a cut on his forehead. A verdict of “Accidental death” was returned.

Thomas and Margaret had already experienced the loss of another child when their first born, Robert Watson, died in infancy, less than three months old in 1895.