Sunday’s Obituary – Joseph Musgrove (1864-1948)

Joseph Musgrove is my great grand uncle – in other words, brother of my great grandfather. His parents are John Musgrove and Catherine Ainsworth – my 2x great grandparents.

Joseph was born on 13 April 1864 in Darwen, Lancashire.

I have Joseph on all the census returns from 1871 to 1911 and in the 1939 Register. For most of these years his occupation was given as “labourer”. So I am guessing that he had a very hard working life.

On 16 May 1891Joseph married Bridget Maria Grainger at St. James Church, Clitheroe, Lancashire.

James and Bridget had eleven children between 1892 and 1911. The local paper published a story marking their golden wedding anniversary in 1941 – see blog post here.

Joseph passed away on 3 June 1948 and details of his death were published in the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times on 11 June 1948.

Joseph Musgrove Obituary - CAT 11 Jun 1948.png


Mr Joseph Musgrove of 66, Wilkin Street, Clitheroe who died yesterday week in his 85th year was one of the town’s best known characters.

He was a native of Darwen, but had spent most of his life in Clitheroe and a for a long number of years was employed in the Highways Department of the Corporation, retiring in 1932. For many years he was one of town’s halberd bearers.

Mr Musgrove was keenly interested in cricket and football and in April travelled to Rochdale to watch Clitheroe Football Club’s last away match of the season.

He was a member of the Royal Castle Lodge Ancient Order of Foresters and members of the order were present at the interment on Tuesday at St Mary’s Cemetery, conducted by the Rev J T Hall.

Mr Musgrove leaves a widow, three sons and three daughters who will have general sympathy in their bereavement.


Sunday’s Obituary – John Robert Turner Musgrove (1891-1944)

John Robert Turner Musgrove is my grand uncle – in other words my grandmother’s brother. His parents are Joseph Musgrove and Elizabeth Ann Turner, my great grandparents.

John was born on 2 November 1891 in Giggleswick, Yorkshire. He was baptised almost two years later on 5 October 1893 at Horton in Ribblesdale, Yorkshire. He was the oldest of at least ten children.

By the time of the 1901 census the family had moved south to Lancashire and were living in Clitheroe. When the next census was taken in 1911 John was working as a “bleacher” in a calico cloth print works.

In 1915 John married Phoebe Scott. They had three children:-

John Robert Turner Musgrove – 17 July 1916
Greta Musgrove – 2 May 1918
Joseph Frank Musgrove – 2 November 1925

When the 1939 Register was taken John’s occupation is given as “shoe repairer”. The family were living at 32 Hayhurst Street, Clitheroe.

John died on 27 February 1944 and his death was reported in the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times on 3 March 1944.

John Robert Turner Musgrove - Death Notice CAT 1944.png


The death occurred on Sunday of Mr John Robert Turner Musgrove, 32 Hayhurst Street, Clitheroe, at the age of 52. A native of Giggleswick Mr Musgrove came to Clitheroe when in his teens, and for some time he was employed at Barrow Printworks. Later, he began business as a clogger in Shaw Bridge and in recent years he had worked in the quarry. Mr Musgrove, who was wounded in the last war, was a member of the British Legion. Another brother, Thomas, made the supreme sacrifice, whilst a younger brother is serving now. Mr Musgrove’s two sons are both in the Forces.

Sincere sympathy will be given to his wife, sons and daughter in their bereavement. Mr Musgrove was associated with the Moor Lane Methodist Church, whose minister, the Rev J E Storey, officiated at the interment, yesterday, at St Mary’s Cemetery.

Military Monday – Henry John Grainger Musgrove (1892-1917)

Henry John Grainger Musgrove is my 1st cousin 2x removed. His parents are Joseph Musgrove and Bridget Maria Grainger. Our common ancestors are John Musgrove and Catherine Ainsworth, my 2x great grandparents.

Henry was the first of ten children by Joseph and Bridget. He was born on 9 April 1892 and baptised at St. James church, Clitheroe, Lancashire on 29 May 1892.

In the 1911 census Henry’s occupation was given as “baker”.

Unfortunately I haven’t been able to find any remaining records of Henry’s military service. However I know from the newspaper article below that he enlisted with the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment on 11 December 1915. His service number was 21851 and at the time of his death on 24 June 1917 he was serving with the 7th Battalion.

The following article appeared in the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times on 29 June 1917.

Henry J G Musgrove - CAT 29 June 1917


“It is my sad duty to write and inform you that I buried your son, yesterday (the 24th inst.). He was killed whilst with a working party, the previous night, and as our battalion is close at hand, Captain Kendall asked me to take charge of the burial. I expect the Authorities will inform you in due course, of the place of burial, and that they will erect a cross over his grave. Captain Kendall spoke in the very highest terms of your son’s bravery and usefulness as a soldier, and his death is much lamented by all his comrades. He has given his life for the greatest of all causes, and he now sleeps in an honoured grave, fondly remembered by all who knew him. May God bless and comfort you and all sorrowing relatives.”

The above letter, signed by the Rev. R. Kelso, Chaplain to the Royal Irish Rifles, has been received by Mr. Musgrove, Wilkin Street, and refers to his son, Private Hy. Musgrove, King’s Royal Lancaster Regt., who was 25 years of age, and enlisted on the 11th December, 1915. Deceased was well known throughout the district, being formerly in the employ of Mr. Dawson, Shaw Bridge. At the time he joined the Army, however, he was engaged as a baker for the Billington and Whalley Co-operative Society. He had been in France 13 months.

A couple of weeks later the following article was published in the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times on 13 July 1917

Henry J G Musgrove - CAT 13 July 1917.png


Official confirmation of the death in action of Private Henry J. G. Musgrove, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regt., was received on Friday last. He was the eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. Jos. Musgrove, 66, Wilkin Street, a single man aged 25, and was, formerly employed by the Billington and Whalley Co-operative Society. He joined the forces in December, 1915, and went to France the following April. The circumstances under which he met death are given by his C.O. in a letter which is appended. Mr. and Mrs. Musgrove, who are to be commiserated with in their great loss, have two other sons in France, and one in training.

The first intimation of Private Musgrove’s untimely end came from Captain Pobert Kelso, Chaplain to the 13th Royal Irish Rifles: “It is my sad duty to wrote and inform you that I buried your son, yesterday (the 24th inst.). He was killed whilst with a working party, the previous night, ands our battalion is close at hand, Captain Kendall asked me to take charge of the burial. I expect the Authorities will inform you in due course, of the place of burial, and that they will erect a cross over his grave. Captain Kendall spoke in the very highest terms of your son’s bravery and usefulness as a soldier, and his death is much lamented by all his comrades. He has given his life for the greatest of all causes, and he now sleeps in an honoured grave, fondly remembered by all who knew him. May God bless and comfort you and all sorrowing relatives.”

Captain Kendall, writing on the 2nd inst., said: “It is with the deepest regret that I write to tell you, in case you have not already heard from other sources, of the death in action of your son, No. 21,851 Private Musgrove, of this regiment. He was killed while working in a trench at night, which work was part of the general operations in the Messines ridge. A shell landed in the midst of his party, causing immediate death to him and one of his comrades. I cannot tell you how sorry I am to lose him from my company, as he had many times proved himself a brave and valuable man. On one occasion, a few days before his death, he had volunteered to carry ammunition through heavy fire, and, altogether, was one of the men whom we could least afford to lose. I can only hope that the fact that he died a noble death, and also the fact that we miss him very much out here, may help to lighten your great sorrow.”

Private Musgrove had been connected with St. Mary’s Sunday School from childhood, and a hymn was sung to his memory and reference made to his death, on Sunday last. A memorial service, conducted by the Vicar, was held in the Church on Wednesday night.

Henry is buried at Wytschaete Military Cemetery in Belgium.

The following information is taken from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) website.

Wytschaete (now Wijtschate) was taken by the Germans early in November 1914. It was recovered by Commonwealth forces during the Battle of Messines on 7 June 1917, but fell into German hands once more on 16 April 1918. The village was recovered for the last time on 28 September. The cemetery was made after the Armistice when graves were brought in from isolated positions surrounding Wytschaete and the following small battlefield cemeteries:- REST AND BE THANKFUL FARM, KEMMEL: 23 UK burials (13 of them 2nd Suffolks), mostly of 1915. R.E. (BEAVER) FARM, KEMMEL: 18 Royal Engineer and four Canadian Engineer burials of 1915-1917. The CEMETERY NEAR ROSSIGNOL ESTAMINET, KEMMEL: 18 UK burials (11 of the 1st Wiltshire Regiment), of January-April 1915. SOMER FARM CEMETERY No.2, WYTSCHAETE: 13 UK burials made by IXth Corps in June 1917. GORDON CEMETERY, KEMMEL: 19 UK burials (14 of them 1st Gordon Highlanders) of January-May 1915. There are now 1,002 servicemen of the First World War buried or commemorated in this cemetery. 673 of the burials are unidentified, but there are special memorials to 16 casualties known or believed to be buried among them. Other special memorials commemorate casualties known to have been buried at the Cemetery near Rossignol Estaminet, RE (Beaver) Farm and Rest and be Thankful Farm, whose graves could not be found on concentration. The cemetery was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.


Wytschaete Military Cemetery

The article published in the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times on 19 July 1917 refers to three other brothers of Henry – at that time two were already in France and the other was in training.

These brothers were James, Albert and Tom. I am very happy to say that all three survived the war.

The Clitheroe Advertiser and Times published another article about the family on 19 October 1917.

CAT 19 October 1917.png

There are some pleasant incidents even in France, amid all the horrors and suffering entailed by the carnage of war. One such happened last Friday, when brothers Tom and Jim Musgrove (sons of Mr. and Mrs. Musgrove, Wilkin Street), met for the first time in two years. Each has since written to his parents saying how well the other looked, and what a pleasure it was to meet after such a long interval. Jim, who is attached to the Lancs. Fusiliers, has been at the front two years, and Tom, who was on his way to the Blue Cross hospital with a horse when the unexpected meeting took place, has been out with the East Lancs. nine months. Mr. and Mrs. Musgrove lost a son, henry, in action, and a fourth son, Albert, is a driver in the R.F.A., and is also across the Channel.

Sunday’s Obituary – Mary Patricia Lord (1940-1951)

Mary Patricia Lord is my 2nd cousin. Her parents are John Edward Lord and Marjorie Musgrove. Our common ancestors are Joseph Musgrove and Elizabeth Ann Turner, my great grandparents.

Mary was born in Clitheroe, Lancashire. Her birth is registered in the March quarter of 1940.

I already knew that she had died at the very young of eleven. And while researching the newspaper archives for my post about her father (see link above) I came across the following story from the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times of 24 August 1951.

Mary Patricia Lord - CAT 24 August 1951.png

Inquest Verdicts On Victims Of Clitheroe Accidents

Verdicts of “accidental death” were returned at Blackburn inquests on Friday on 11-year-old Mary Patricia Lord, of 5, Beech Street, Clitheroe, who died from injuries received when she fell from her cycle, and on 68-year-old Samuel Cook, a patient of Clitheroe Hospital, who was knocked down by a car outside the hospital and later died in Blackburn Royal Infirmary.

Described by witnesses as “a very careful rider,” Pat, who was given the cycle as a present when she passed the examination for entrance to Clitheroe Grammar School, lost control when her foot slipped from the pedal, while riding in Peel Street, last Tuesday.

She fell, struck her head on the kerb-edge, and died the following day in Blackburn Royal Infirmary.

The jury returned their verdict without retiring.

So Marjorie (my 1st cousin 1x removed) lost her husband in WW2 after less than five years of marriage and then her daughter at the age of eleven.

Thriller Thursday – Graham Dawson – Lucky to be Alive

I have previously posted about my dad being struck by lightning here. This was a brief article in the local newspaper in Clitheroe, Lancashire from 2000 looking back at events that happened fifty years earlier.

As the archives for the Clitheroe Advertiser & Times have recently been added to the British Newspaper Archive website I can now share with you the original newspaper report from 1950.

The following article appeared in the Clitheroe Advertiser & Times on 25 August 1950.

Graham Dawson - Clitheroe Advertisr & Times - 25 August 1950.png


A small zig-zag burn above his left eye and a splitting headache are the legacy of a flash of lightning which make 20 year old Mr Graham Dawson who lives at 102, Whalley Road, one of the luckiest people in Clitheroe this week.

Standing on the front doorstep watching Wednesday’s severe thunderstorm, Graham saw a brilliant flash and then went blind.

He stumbled back into the lobby of the house and tried to shout for help but could not speak. Thinking he had gone an errand Mrs Johnson, daughter of Mr and Mrs Musgrove, occupiers of the house, went to the front door and found Graham in a state of collapse.

She shouted to her mother and together they supported him, but his sight did not return so they led him to a chair in the living room.

Mrs Musgrove then ran to inform her husband who works at the Sun Street Mill and he immediately telephoned for the Doctor.

He was attended by Doctor J H Fairweather and within half an hour his sight had completely returned though there was a slight swelling on his forehead and red mark.

Mrs Musgrove said Graham, who was a farm worker, was already convalescing following an operation for appendicitis.

At the time he went to the front door Graham was wearing wellington boots and it was undoubtedly that fact that saved him from more serious injury.

Seen by an “Advertiser and Times” reporter yesterday afternoon, Graham said he went straight to bed after the doctor had been and apart from a bad headache and shock he did not feel any the worse for his remarkable experience.

Funnily enough I thought I’d read the first line of this newspaper report before – but I just couldn’t recall where. Then it came to me in a “flash”. Perhaps the following extract will help you:-

As a souvenir of a traumatic event he would never remember, the boy’s forehead bore the zig-zag of a scar, the only wound that the murderer could inflict on the infant.

Screenshot 2017-10-08 17.08.30.png


So there is the proof – my dad and his zig-zag burn became the inspiration for a certain boy wizard by the name of Harry Potter.


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.


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 – John Turner (1876-1926)

John Turner is my great grand uncle – he is the brother of my great grandmother Elizabeth Ann Musgrove (nee Turner). His parents are Thomas Turner (1848-1916) and Mary Jane Carradice (1854-1917) – my 2x great grandparents.

John was born in Kendal, Westmorland and his birth is registered in the March quarter of 1876. He was baptised on the 2 April 1876.

In the 1881 and 1891 census returns John is living with his parents and siblings in Settle, Yorkshire. In 1891 at the age of 14 his occupation is described as “hawker”.

John married Elizabeth Ann Gornall sometime in Q4 1900 in Clitheroe, Lancashire.

In the 1901 census John and Elizabeth are living at 50 Taylor Street, Clitheroe with his older sister Elizabeth Ann and her husband Joseph Musgrove (my great grandparents). John is working as a general labourer.

Ten years later Johns still working as a general labourer and in the 1911 census John and Elizabeth are living at 13 Grimshaw Street, Clitheroe together with five children:-

Mary Ellen – born 1901
Catherine – born 1902
Annie – born 1905
Maria – born 1906
James – born 1907

They also had two other children who died as babies – John Thomas in 1903 and Elizabeth in 1909.

John and Elizabeth went on to have four more children:-

Winifred – born 1912
Ivy – born 1913
George Henry – born 1914
Florence – born 1915

As far as I can tell Elizabeth Ann died sometime in early 1919 at the age of 37 – her death is registered in Q1 in Clitheroe. I don’t know what happened to all the children at that time – some were still very young. I can only guess that they were cared for by relatives or even entered the workhouse.

I found the following newspaper article in the Lancashire Evening Post of 18 January 1926 detailing the circumstances of John’s death. It’s sometimes difficult to know that you have the right person in newspaper articles, especially with a fairly common name as John Turner. However the report says that he was living at 2 Marlborough Street, Clitheroe. This was the address of his parents in the 1911 census – so I am confident that I have the right person.



The body found in the snow on the roadside at Worston on Saturday, has been identified as that of John Turner, cattle drover, aged about 50, who had been living as 2, Marlborough Street, Clitheroe. He left that address about seven o’clock on Saturday and was found at nine o’clock, it being thought that the severe cold had caused his collapse. The facts of the case were reported to the coroner, who considers an inquest unnecessary.