Heritage Open Day. Crowdfunding success.

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

@heritageopenday
THEIR NAMES LIVETH FOR EVERMORE
1914-1919
SOUTH STAFFS REGT
Lance Corporal PITT, ALFRED 240255
Private CRIBB, HARRY 9205
Private NOLAN, JAMES 32058
Private EVANS, WILLIAM HENRY 8686
Private DONNELLY, JOHN 6002
Private DUNN, GEORGE 16310
Private MULLIN, MARTIN 31221
Private EDGE, JOSEPH 203383
Private BEARDS, EDWARD 9470
Private MOORE,  WILLIAM HENRY 26769
Private CONNOLLY,  WILLIAM 9206  
1ST S DEVONS Private MALE, HARRY 9825
13TH YORKS Private MOOGAN, EDWARD 29451
RN Ordinary Seaman Bristol McNISH, JOHN Z/9961
   
Poor institute Memorial
ROLL OF HONOUR
FOR THOSE OFFICERS WHO LEFT THE WOLVERHAMPTON
 POOR LAW INSTITUTION TO SERVE THEIR
COUNTRY IN THE GREAT WAR 1914 – 1918
 
GEORGE WILLIAN CALDWELL S.STAFFS.  KILLED IN ACTION
CALDWELL GEORGE WILLIAM Private 36086 
1st/4th Bn King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry 
Killed in Action 09/10/1917 Age:19 
Son of Mrs. E. A. Caldwell of 11 North Villa Rd. Hereford. 
Grave/Memorial Reference: Panel 108 to 111 
Cemetery: TYNE COT MEMORIAL
 
J. BARNHAM Gren Guards
L. BURTON R.Engineers.
W. COLBOURNE  ASC.
A. DUNN S. Staffs
R.W. EDGE R Engineers
T. FOSTER North Fusiliers
A.J. LLOYD Royal Navy
H. PRICE R.A.M.C
W. ROBINSON R.G.A.
J. SHINGLE R.A.F
W. SIMPSON RAMC
G.P. STOCK S.Staffs
T.S TOKER N. Staffs
F. TEW S.Staffs
F. TOOTH S.Staffs
A. TRAVES R.A.M.C
J.E. WILLIAMS R.A.F
R.E. WRIGHT R.G.A
DR H.C. CRAWFORD. M.C. R.A.M.C
Metal ‘Roll of Honour’ plaque
Production Date: 1918 – 1925
Production Period: First World War (1914-1918)
Object Name: Plaque. ObjectNumber: M909
Summary: Metal plaque with a ‘Roll of Honour’ of the names of men from Wolverhampton Poor Law Institute.
Description: The flat metal plaque commemorates Officers who left the Wolverhampton Poor Law Institution to serve in the Great War 1914-1918.
Colour: Grey. Technique: Cast
                        Tags: First World War (1914-1918) War Memorial inscriptions Wolverhampton Miscellaneous Historical Objects
Wolverhampton Arts and Museums Service

On Friday 13 September 2019 for our National Heritage Open Day Event in the Wolverhampton City Suite we celebrated our Crowdfunding success.
This afternoon-tea event hosted by the Mayor of Wolverhampton celebrated the Wolverhampton Civic and Historical Society (now The Wolverhampton Society – WS) and Outside Centre, ‘crowdfunder’ project, that successfully raise over £3000 to restore three WW1 memorials in the City of Wolverhampton.

Club Memorial
Do you know which club this is from? Please help us to trace this memorials origins…

IN MEMORY OF
EDWIN READ COLLISSON
CAPTAIN & ADJUTANT 1/6TH BATTALION.
SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE REGIMENT
KILLED IN ACTION AT THE BATTLE OF LOOS 13TH OCTOBER 1915

WILLIAM MILLNER
CAPTAIN 1/5TH BATTALION.
SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE REGIMENT
KILLED IN ACTION AT THE BATTLE OF LOOS 13TH OCTOBER 1915

GERALD HOWARD SMITH
CAPTAIN 1/6TH BATTALION.
SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE REGIMENT
DIED OF WOUNDS RECEIVED NEAR NEUVILLE ST VASST 29TH MARCH 1916
 
RICHARD FERRAND AMPHLETT
SECOND LIEUTENNANT 1/8TH BATTALION
WORCESTERSHIRE REGIMENT
KILLED IN ACTION AT HARGICOURT 5TH APRIL 1917
 
EDWIN LEWIS
MAJOR 1/6th BATTALION
SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE REGIMENT
DIED OF WOUNDS RECEIVED AT THE
BATTLE OF BELLENGLISE 29TH SEPTEMBER 1918
 
MEMBERS OF THIS CLUB WHO FELL IN THE WAR
1914                                                                1918

Two of the memorials from the City Art Gallery archives have been restored and the third, the Street Shrine memorial in Thornley Street, is in the process of being restored. This National Heritage Open Day Event, celebrated the City treasures in the Mayoral Suite as well as saying thank you to those who engaged and contributed to this WW1 commemoration project and events. Friday’s event included an exhibition, a walk and presentations on the all restored memorials: Wolverhampton City Council’s Head of Arts and Culture Marguerite Nugent spoke as well as University of Wolverhampton PhD student Claire Jones. Claire shared her research on the Street Shrine, this research will be published in a book later in the year.

Big thank you to The National Heritage Fund and Awards For All for their support in funding projects, enabling the development of a map of war memorials across the city and tree planting – follow this link to see the City map: an exciting chance to learn and discover the history of Wolverhampton’s World War One story and how it has been incorporated into our city’s landscape.

Wolverhampton City Council’s Head of Arts and Culture Marguerite Nugent talking about the restorations.
Memorials Cleaned. Wolverhampton Chronicle 29Sept2019
‘Little Lanes” memorial (now Thornley Street),before the clean up.
Special thanks to University of Wolverhampton PhD student Claire Jones for sharing her research on the Little Lanes’s Street Shrine (now Thornley Street),

Friday’s event included an exhibition, a walk and presentations on the all restored memorials

Big thank you to everyone who came along, especially the Mayor and Mayoress of Telford who presence very much added to the occasion.

Charles William Dunn

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

Charles was born in Wolverhampton in 1882, the son of Charles and Mary Ann Dunn. In 1891, they were living at Dean Road, Wednesfield, along with his siblings Thomas and Hannah. He married Phoebe G. Willetts in Wolverhampton in 1911, and the couple went on to have seven children: Alexandra M. (1911), Annie (1913), Price William (known as Sonny – 1914), Ellen (1920), Mary (1922), Eileen (1928) and Jean M. (1933). Unfortunately, their only son, Price, died in 1930 at a young age after falling down a mine.

At the age of 16, Charles lied about his age to join the Staffordshire Cavalry, and was later in the Infantry. He served in the Siege of Cape Colony and the Siege of Mafeking, as well as being a guard at Queen Victoria’s funeral in 1901. He served during the First World War, including in the Battle of the Somme in France.

After leaving the Army he worked at the “Five Field” mines, due to his knowledge of explosives. Charles died on 12 May 1941 of pneumonia in Moseley Village, Willenhall.

Thank you very much to Edith Geurts-Schreuders for the information concerning her grandfather. Her mother Eileen married a Dutch officer in 1948, and they moved to the Netherlands. She is keen to find out more about the family, including a brother of Charles’s who apparently died in the First World War, so if anybody has any further information, please get in touch!

 

 

Harold Bagley

Tags

, , , , ,

Harold was born in Wolverhampton in 1893, the son of Amelia and John T. Bagley. By 1901, he was living with his widowed mother at 102 John Street, Bilston.

Harold enlisted with the 8th Service Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment (number 15456). On 14 May 1917, his name was listed in the Express & Star as having been wounded. Unfortunately, this information was incorrect, as he was killed in action on 15 February 1916. He is remembered at the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial in Belgium

‘Old Bill’ – a message from our ANZAC past

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

Information for the following post has been provided by Bill’s descendant, Steve Dean.

********************************

  • A young Frederick William (Bill) Dean arrived in Albany, Australia, from Wolverhampton a couple of years before the outbreak of WW1.
  • He was one of the original Gallipoli ANZACs serving throughout all of that campaign in 4 Field Ambulance and later on the Western Front as an infantry Sergeant.
  • Following the evacuation of troops at the end of the Gallipoli campaign he became seriously ill with ‘Jaundice’ (possibly hepatitis) and was shipped back to Australia for three months ‘debility’. Discharged as medically unfit upon arrival back in W.A.
  • Reenlisted (somehow) just a few weeks later and served as an infantry Sergeant on the Western Front (16 Battalion) until the end of the war. Wounded (Gas) in 1918 losing partial sight in one eye.
  • Married the girl from down the street (Gatis Street in Wolverhampton) and returned to Australia living in the wheatbelt towns of Bruce Rock, Goomalling and Northam where he operated small businesses, was a JP and an RSL member.
  • Had two children Betty (dec) and Bob (now 85 years of age).

Recollections

deanBill’s grandson Steve clearly recalls conversations with him about the war. Although like most war veterans reluctant to recount his experiences, he would recount them in some cases. They tended to be phrased in a ‘parable’ like way always with the intention of making a compelling point (the war being a disaster, a catastrophe….).

Steve recalls his grandfather talking about that very first day at Gallipoli and commenting along the lines of “We’re in a real spot of bother here – I’m going to have to be lucky to get out of this alive and probably won’t.”

Stretcher Bearers at Gallipoli were unarmed, often fully exposed to the enemy and defenceless. It was a job that demanded cold hard courage day after day, along with the demands of looking after men who were all too often beyond help. Not surprisingly their casualty rate was very high, even by the awful statistics of WWI. Steve recalls him mentioning that you just had to carry on never knowing when a sniper’s bullet might come your way.

It doesn’t pay to be too tall in war!

One day a sniper’s bullet did come Old Bill’s way just touching the top of his hair. The fellow next to him was not so fortunate. “It doesn’t pay to be too tall in war”!

The truce at Gallipoli

Steve also remembers his grandfather talking about the brief truce at Gallipoli on 24th May 1915 where fighting was suspended for a brief period so the dead could be buried. He expressed great respect for the character and decency of the Turkish soldiers (a sentiment still strong today between the two nations), sitting with them sharing rations and so on. The brutal truth though was that the ground was so littered with putrifying corpses that it was impossible to keep fighting.

Don’t hesitate – not even for a second!

Another ‘parable-like recollection’ was that of leading a patrol later in the war on the Western Front. Resting with his patrol quietly against a stone wall he heard footsteps approaching along the other side of the wall and German voices. Two bombs (one in each hand apparently!) were immediately thrown over the top. Old Bill found a photo on the body of the German soldier who had been leading that patrol. It showed a happy family scene – the tall fellow in full uniform, one child sitting on his shoulders, wife standing alongside with another child. Many years after the war Bill recounted this event to Steve – showing him that very photo. A message about the futility of war, his disgust at it and profound sorrow followed. Also delivered at the same time was a message about “not hesitating even for a second in war – that’s why I’m alive and he’s not.”

Why I lived in the wheatbelt after the war

Old Bill recounted that he suffered from bad bronchitis after the war and that a doctor advised him to live in a dry, warm climate. The W.A. wheatbelt fitted that bill. The reality was far more harsh than that – most men gassed on the Western Front did not live much past 50 – such were the injuries inflicted by this terrible new form of warfare. The wheatbelt must have helped as Bill died not far short of his 89th birthday.

So what would Old Bill’s message be to us today?

Probably pretty similar to what grandson Steve recalls from the 1960s & 70s i.e.

  • WW1 was a disaster, a catastrophe in fact with too many good men on all sides dying, being maimed and so on.
  • Our nations should be able to settle their differences peacefully, and whilst we must always be capable of defending ourselves, war must be a final resort.
  • We need to learn as a nation to keep our noses out of other people’s bloody business (an oft expressed sentiment of his).
  • A good first port of call might be to set up a boxing ring in the middle of a paddock and have the leaders of quarrelling nations fight it out themselves without involving others (a frequently expressed sentiment of his during the time of the Vietnam War – he felt our involvement in it was a mistake although he admired the people we sent there to fight).

Like most surviving WW1 veterans, Bill was a man profoundly affected by his experiences and struggled with his demons for the rest of his life – and he was one of the lucky ones.

An interesting aside – fast forward to 2012

During early 2012 an interesting artefact was found in the linen cupboard of Bill’s daughter Betty (now deceased). In amongst the contents of her linen cupboard was a long piece of cross stitching carefully folded with a stainless steel needle still embedded in it., bearing the words Egypt 1916, the Pyramids & Sphinx, the words ‘Advance Australia’ and the flags of a number of nations. Steve believes that this work was completed whilst Bill was a patient in hospital shortly after the completion of the Gallipoli campaign. It was probably quite a brilliant idea of the nursing staff to occupy traumatised minds for extended periods with few available resources.

A coincidence

Grandson Steve’s wife, Catherine, is the grand daughter of Harold James (Sam) Bacon – a Queenslander, also one of the original ANZACS who served as a runner with the 9th Battalion throughout the Gallipoli campaign and on the Western Front until the war’s end.

 

 

 

Charles Henry Lack

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

Charles was born in Wolverhampton on 5 November 1896, the son of Emma G. and Thomas H. Lack. In 1901 they were living at 30 Paradise Street, Wolverhampton, with Charles’s sister, Emma. From 1906 onwards, Charles attended Dudley Road Primary School, and from 1907 until 1909 he was at Causeway Lake School. By 1911, they were at 5 Bromley Street, Wolverhampton, with an additional three children – Edith, John and Lily. Charles was working as an errand boy for a grocer.

In 1913, he enlisted with the Kings Own Scottish Borderers at the age of 17 (service number 11627). In 1916, he joined the 5th Battalion of the Bedfordshire Regiment (number 19083). At some point he also transferred to the Royal Defence Corps (number 45200). Charles died on 12 November 1918 in Wolverhampton, and is buried in Wolverhampton Cemetery. He is also remembered at St John’s Church.

Frederic John Iliff

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

The son of Fanny and John Spencer Iliff, Frederic was born in Burton-on-Trent in 1884. In 1901 they were still living in Burton, together with Frederic’s sisters, Margaret A. and Helen H. By 1911, he had moved to Wolverhampton, and was living on his own at 199 Lea Road. He was working as the manager of a gear cutting works for a motor manufacturer.

Frederic enlisted in the 6th Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment as a Second Lieutenant. His name was listed in the Express & Star on 30 October 1914 as one of the local men who had signed up to serve his country, with his address now being 3 Goldthorn Hill, Penn Fields, Wolverhampton. However, he was killed in action on 13 October 1915. He is remembered at the Loos Memorial in France, as well as in the Lady Chapel of St Peter’s Church and on the memorial at St Philip’s Church, Penn.

Charles Frederick Badham

Tags

, , ,

The son of Elizabeth and Lewis William Badham, Charles was born in Wolverhampton in 1894. By 1911, the family were living in St Albans, Hertfordshire, along with Charles’s siblings Joseph William and Hubert George. Charles was working as a milk carrier on the milk rounds.

In 1914, Charles enlisted in the 2nd Company, 1st Battalion of the Hertfordshire Regiment (number 2676). He was wounded, and died of these wounds on 28 May 1916. He is buried at Abbeville Communal Cemetery in France.

Bertram Callear Burgess

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

Bertram was born on 12 August 1888 in Wolverhampton, the youngest child of William Burgess and Ellen Hill Callear. Bertram’s middle name Callear came to be spelt many different ways! Bertram grew up in 9 Tower Street, Wolverhampton. William, his father, was described as a coal dealer, and more often as a carter. On the 1911 census he was a carter working on his own account and Bertram was also a carter, presumably working with his father. Bertram had a sister, Mary Elizabeth, born 1884 (ruler at a printer’s in 1901), and a brother, William, born 1886 who was a railway clerk on the 1901 census. Another sister, Mabel Fanny, was born in, and died in 1883. Bertram was the only child living with William and Ellen in 1911.

Ellen Hill Burgess had become a member of Queen Street Congregational Church in 1900. Bertram appears on the Church’s 1914-15 roll of honour. He enlisted very early, on 9 August 1914, in the 1/7th Battalion of South Staffordshire Regiment (Regimental number 10183). This was a Kitchener’s battalion formed in Lichfield at the outbreak of war. On 21 July 1915 he was sent to Gallipoli. At some point he had been appointed a Corporal. He appeared on the Daily List of 4 September 1915 as one of the wounded. Sadly the effect of a gun shot wound to his left arm had been severe and it had to amputated. He was discharged on 19 May 1916 and was given a pension and a Silver War Badge

Bertram moved to Aston. His pension card has the address 3/32 Upper Thomas Street. In 1918 he married Louisa M Harding and they had two sons and two daughters. By 1939 they had moved to 85 Shortheath Road, Erdington, probably part of the new post WW1 housing. His occupation on the 1939 National Register is difficult to read but could be commissionaire. This was a job frequently carried out by disabled ex-servicemen. Bertram died at the same address on 7 October 1962 and after probate left an estate of £3835 13s.

The research for this blog post was completed by volunteer Susan Martin.

Richard Henry Ridges

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

Richard was born in Calcutta in 1885, the son of Lucy Edridge (from Bilston) and Edward Ridges (from London). Richard had an older sister Lucy born 1882 and a brother John born 1883. By 1891 the family was back in England living at 29 Tettenhall Road, Wolverhampton with Richard’s maternal grandparents. Richard’s grandfather after whom he was named was a former tea dealer. Did this explain the family’s stay in India?

Richard’s father Edward Ridges was now a coach builder. On the 1901 census the family was living at Larches Lane, Wolverhampton. Richard’s sister Lucy was a milliner’s assistant. On the 1911 census she and Julia had no occupations. In 1911 the family was living at Karagola, 12 Crawford Street, Wolverhampton. They had nine rooms and on both the 1901 and 1911 census returns there was a female servant, Martha Walker in 1901 and Annie Bishop in 1911. Richard was not recorded at home on the 1911 census, as he was a pharmaceutical servant in London.

Edward and Lucy Ridges had been members of the Queen Street Congregational Church since 1893 and Richard is on the church’s 1914-15 Roll of Honour. Richard joined the Royal Army Medical Corps (unit number 534488) and served with the 4th London Field Ambulance. He was discharged on 11 April 1918 for ill heath and received a pension from 12 November 1918. He had been diagnosed with tuberculosis of the lower dorsal vertibrae, judged to be aggravated by war service, and neurasthenia judged to be caused by the war. His salary before he enlisted had been £3.50 a week and he was granted £5 a week.

The good news is that Richard’s tuberculosis did not prove to be fatal. He married Hettie Fuller in 1925, and on the 1939 National Register was working as a chemist and living at 42 Ashwood Road, Worcester. Probably after retirement he moved to Leigh-on-Sea where he died on 23 June 1967 at 68 Hillside Crescent, leaving an estate after probate of £9534. He does not appear to have had any children.

The research for this blog post has been completed by volunteer Susan Martin.

John Douglas Rowe

Tags

, , , , , , ,

John Douglas Rowe was born in Wolverhampton on 5 November 1897, the youngest of the four children of William Rowe and Agnes Annie Nevitt. His siblings were William Henry in 1891, Thomas Sidney in 1893 and Gladys May in 1894. William Rowe was a vaccination officer. In 1901 the family were living at 99 Waterloo Road and in 1911 at 88 Waterloo Road. John Douglas was still a scholar on the 1911 census. His brother William was not at home on the census, Thomas Sidney was a paint grinder in varnish works and Gladys a typist for an iron and steel merchants.

John Douglas is on the Queen Street Congregational Church 1914-15 roll of honour. I have not been able to establish his link with the church, although a number of people from Waterloo Road attended. John Douglas joined up on 31 December 1914 (service number 81033) with the Royal Field Artillery 6th Brigade as a gunner. He was just 17. He went to France on 2 October 1915, and was discharged on 6 February 1919. He was awarded a Silver War Badge, having been discharged for illness. He received a pension the same day, and his illness was judged to have been aggravated by the war. He also claimed bad teeth but this was not accepted.

Between 1919 and 1923 he moved to 121 Cambridge Road, Smethwick. In 1922 he married Hilda M Downing and they had a son and a daughter. On the 1939 National Register he is a Superintendent School Engineering Officer living at 3 Benton Road, Middlesborough. John died in Wolverhampton in 1953.

The research for this blog post has been done by volunteer, Susan Martin.