Sergeant C. Ellitts
An article in the Express & Star dated 8 June 1915 gives details of a Mrs Ellits, of 81 Pearson Street, who has received official notice of the death of her husband, Sergeant C. Ellitts [sic], aged 23, of the C Company, 2nd Battalion South Staffordshire Regiment.
Further details in the article include the fact that he had been in the army five years, and had been a gymnasium instructor at Aldershot before going to the front. Sergeant A. Busby, who wrote to Mrs Ellits, had also forwarded a photo of herself together with a five-month-old baby, who had been born after Sergeant Ellits departed for France so had never seen.
I believe that his birth is that of a Cornelius Edward Ellis, whose birth was registered in Wolverhampton in December 1892. The marriage of this man was registered in Jun 1913 to an Annie F. Abbott-Nicholls. I have also found the birth of what is presumably his daughter, a Cornelia E. Ellitts, registered in March 1915 in Farnham, which would tie in with the Aldershot connection. On the 1901 census he is listed at Pearson Street, together with his parents (Joseph H. and Annie M.), his four siblings, and the family of Joseph’s brother. By the 1911 census, Cornelius is based at Whittington Barracks in Lichfield, already with the 2nd Batallion of the South Staffordshire Regiment.
The National Archives has the medal card of a Cornelius Ellitts of the South Staffordshire Regiment (number 8904), although he is a Corporal rather than a Sergeant. He could have had a field promotion from Corporal to Sergeant due to the heavy casualties suffered by the 2nd Battalion in the Battle of Festubert. This medal card shows he entered the War very early on, entering France on 12 August 1914. He was awarded the Victory and British War Medals and the 1914 Star. The Wolverhampton Roll of Remembrance lists a Sergeant Cornelius Edward Elliott, but does not have his Regiment detailed. He is also listed on the memorial to employees of Daniel Smith Ltd. This website suggests that he was killed in action on 16 May 1915, and confirms that he was the son of Joseph and Mary Ann Ellitts of 81 Pearson Street. His wife is given as an Annie Frances Meller (formerly Ellitts) of 283 Great College St. Camden Town, London, so she has clearly remarried. He also appears on the St John’s Church War memorial.