We have seen previously on this blog occasions when the local newspaper printed photographs of groups of brothers who were all serving during the First World War. This instance from the Express & Star on 22 February 1916 (also appeared in the Midland Counties Express on 26 February) is more unique, as it includes sisters as well as brothers. These are the children of Mrs Whitehouse, of 13 Ash Street, Wolverhampton, a widow, who “has cheerfully released her family of five to do their bit for their country”:
- Corporal Jack Whitehouse, in the 1st Field Ambulance, 61st Division
- Private Edward Whitehouse, A Section 2/1st S. M. Field Ambulance R.A.M.C.
- Private George Whitehouse, C Section 1/3rd N. M. F. A., R. A. M. C.
- Alice and Ellen Whitehouse, working on munitions in Birmingham
The family were living at 33 Ash Street in 1911, the children of Sarah Fanny Whitehouse. Their father, Albert Edward Whitehouse, had died in 1903. Jack (listed as John on the census) was a carpenter, Edward was a machinist, and George was a labourer, all three working for a Timber Merchant.
John was born in Wolverhampton in around 1892. He enlisted as a Private with the Royal Army Medical Corps (number 2076), before becoming a Corporal (number 435265). He appears to have survived the war, but I have been unable to confirm further details about his life.
Edward was born in Wolverhampton on 17 March 1893. He was baptised in St Mark’s Church on 6 April 1893. It is unclear which is his military service, as there are three men by that name serving with the Royal Army Medical Corps. However, he, too, survived the war. There is an Edward Whitehouse who married Susannah Stanhope in Wolverhampton in 1928 which may be the same man. This couple had a son, John E., in 1933. Edward died in Wolverhampton in 1970
George was born in Wolverhampton on 10 December 1894, and was also baptised at St Mark’s Church on 3 January 1895. He enlisted with the Royal Army Medical Corps (service number 1658) and first served in France from 4 March 1915. He, too, survived, and died in Wolverhampton in 1971. I have not been able to confirm further details of his life.
Alice was born in Wolverhampton in 1896, and was baptised at St Mark’s Church on 18 October 1896. I have not been able to confirm any further details.
Ellen was born in Wolverhampton in 1898, and was baptised at St Mark’s on 20 March 1898, but again have not been able to ascertain any further information.
If anyone can find out more about this family, we would love to hear it.