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marshThe Midland Counties Express on 13 November 1915 tells of the four sons of Mrs Bullock, of No 3 Court, Walsall Street, Wolverhampton, who were all serving in the army. The newspaper explained that Mrs Bullock had been married twice, hence her sons had different surnames:

  • Corporal David Marsh (top), aged 38 and single. He had 19 years’ experience in the army and reenlisted in the 6th South Staffords shortly after the outbreak of war. He was a forgeman at Walker of Walsall.
  • Private John Marsh (bottom), aged 34, had joined the Northumberland Fusiliers six months ago and was now in training. He had been a boat unloader employed by D. Baker of Willenhall
  • Samuel Bullock (right), aged 29, had been in the Remount Department for about 8 months. He had worked as a striker for Joseph James of Monmer Lane, Willenhall
  • William Marsh (left), a married 40-year-old man with eight children, living at Monmer Lane, Willenhall. He had been in the Militia previously and enlisted in the 6th South Staffordshire Regiment on the outbreak of war.

David was born in Willenhall in 1876, the son of David Marsh. In 1911, he was living with his widowed mother at 66 Monmer Lane, near Willenhall. He was a brickyard labourer. On 29 August 1914, he enlisted in the 4th Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment (number 9704). However, he was discharged on 27 October 1914 for being “not likely to become an efficient Special Reservist (Medical Grounds)”. He appears to have been undeterred, as he enlisted again on 14 November 1914 in the 6th South Staffordshire Regiment (number 3810). This time he was posted, and served for a period in France, until he was discharged on 15 July 1916 due to sickness. He was awarded the Silver War Badge (number 72709) on 22 November 1916. He died in Wolverhampton in 1928.

John Edward was born in 1881. In 1911 he was a brickyard labourer. On 4 May 1915, he enlisted in the Northumberland Fusiliers (number 26085). He was discharged on 22 March 1917, suffering from shell shock. He was awarded the Silver War Badge (number 157928) on 4 April 1917. I have not been able to confirm whether he got married or when he died.

Samuel was born in Wolverhampton in 1885. He married Alice Rose Stonier in Wolverhampton in 1910, and the couple were living at 9 Merry Boys opening, Moseley Village, in 1911. Samuel was a gas fitting makers striker. The Army Remount Service were responsible for the purchase and training of horses for the army. I have not been able to confirm further details of Samuel’s service, however. He did survive the war, and he and Alice had eight children – Joseph (1911), Samuel (1913), George F. (1916), Rose (1921), Mary A. (1923), John H. (1924), Gwendoline (1926) and Amelia (1928). Samuel died in 1931.

William was born in about 1876. He married Eliza Cooper in 1897, and they had eight children – Eliza, Mary Ann, David, Frederick, Amy, John, Martha and Joseph. In 1911, they were living at House 7, Court 5, Monmore Lane, near Willenhall. William was a General Labourer. I have been unable to confirm details of his military service or of his death, but he, too, appears to have survived the war.